Right here in Southern California, in the LA suburb of Downey (a place my father lived during part of his childhood), is the world’s oldest operating McDonald’s. It’s a unique claim to fame, and one some may pay no attention to, but, like it or not, fast food is an invention of America, and thus, part of America’s history. Over the weekend this McDonald’s turned 65, and they hosted a little party celebrating its history. Speaking on its significance included Ambassador of Americana himself, Charles Phoenix, Googie architecture author Alan Hess, and members of the Downey Conservancy.
Opening in 1953, this McDonald’s was the third ever built, and the second to feature the iconic “Golden Arches” that were the product of a combined effort of Richard and Maurice McDonald and architect Stanley Clark Meston.
Besides its spectacular neon sign featuring Speedee, the first mascot of McDonald’s (long before Ronald McDonald) and insane architecture, this McDonald’s also features a little museum.
Visit world’s oldest operating McDonald’s and grab a fried apple pie at 10207 Lakewood Blvd., at the corner of Lakewood and Florence in Downey.