SoCal Thanksgiving (pt 1 of 3)

With a four-day holiday weekend (and no family members other than the canine variety to encumber me), off to the L.A. area, Orange County, and beyond for three days.

Let’s start off in Panorama City with this sign which I think is enhanced by the rust:


I thought I’d stop in at Tommy Gelinas’ (Valley Relics Museum) storage place in North Hollywood to see if I could get a peek at one of his latest acquisitions.  I didn’t expect a soul to be there since it was Thanksgiving but I got lucky and a kind woman showed me around.  There it was!  I hadn’t seen the thing since the 1970s.  The hot dog stand originally stood in Hollywood but went into storage in 2005.  Tommy will eventually restore it.  Here’s the scoop:


He’s also got a couple of shish-kebab-ed burgers.  I don’t know where they came from:


And an Arby’s hat sign:


And not one but TWO Helms Bakeries trucks.  Tommy’s sure got a lot of projects!  You bought your bread (and later doughnuts) directly from their trucks since they didn’t sell their stuff in grocery stores.  Here’s what one of these trucks looks like restored:


There were some other goodies there but let’s move back out to the streets.  The top panel of the Kopper Keg Liquors sign in L.A. is obviously adapted but it’s still great:


I went to inspect the tragedy in Glendora.  Sure enough, the neon is gone and some cheap LED rope tubing had replaced it.  How could they!!!!



I can only imagine how horrible it looks at night.  For comparison, here’s a photo I took of the sign in 2013:
And more sorta bad news:  Coates Cyclery in Pomona closed earlier this year and there was talk that the sign would be removed — my photo from a few years ago:

Turns out that the sign was adapted for the new tenant:


Back to the rusty/crusty stuff.  The Cask & Keg Liquor store in Pomona.  Missing most of its neon & painted over a bit but still lots of style:


Last stop of the day was way out in the middle of nowhere in Lake Los Angeles to check out the Four Aces Movie Set (  I’m assuming that the motel signs were brought here from somewhere else:


I don’t know if this sign was originally built for a Four Aces Motel.  I suspect it’s just a mix of old and new pieces:


The diner is very movie set-ish inside and out — surely built on-site to look oldish.


with a classic, vintage bulb arrow:


That’s it for tonight.  I’ll try to get Day 2 up tomorrow.

Happy trails,

dj & the still recuperating dogs

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