90 Miles From Tyranny : Big Boy!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Big Boy!

In 1947 Alex “Shoney” Schoenbaum opened the Parkette Drive-In next to his father’s bowling alley in Charleston, West Virginia. Schoenbaum became a Big Boy franchisee on February 7, 1952, now calling his several locations the Parkette Big Boy Shoppes.[1][2] In May 1954 a public "Name the Parkette Big Boy Contest" was announced and in June 1954 Schoenbaum's five Parkette Drive Ins were rebranded as Shoney's.

Shoney's [the Parkette] was originally the Big Boy franchisee for West Virginia; however, Schoenbaum rapidly grew the Shoney's chain through subfranchising, expanding his Big Boy territory through the southeastern United States, excluding Florida only because the rights already belonged to fellow Big Boy franchisee Frisch's.

Schoenbaum's earliest subfranchisees operated under their own name. In 1955...

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