It’s RIP for Arby’s in Pomona

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The Arby’s at 2250 N. Garey Ave. in Pomona, a location that dates to 1970 and was never updated, closed May 26. Sunday’s column begins with an item on the restaurant.

There were said to be under 10 locations in the United States that had retained the hat sign and the chuckwagon shape. I’m not a big fast food fan or Arby’s fan, but my friends and I loved the building, the sign and the patio. So let’s pay a visual tribute.

Above is the building in 2010. Below is the sign being (say it ain’t so!) dismantled and hauled away on Tuesday, shot by reader David Pinal.


I stopped by on Thursday morning to confirm the location was closed for good rather than for remodeling. Signs in the windows direct patrons to Arby’s in Ontario, Chino Hills, Upland and Covina. The interior is cleaned out.

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There was still one shaded table and one waste receptacle (complete with “tray caddy”) left on the patio. Both look original. I’m assuming they’re gone by now. Click on the thumbnails for a larger view.

Without a neon sign in the shape of a ten-gallon hat, Garey Avenue is a little less interesting.

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  • John Clifford

    Aaaaggggghhhhh. I drove by there today and didn’t even notice. It did seem as if there were an unsettling disturbance in the force though.

    And another one bites the dust.

  • Gae Goodrich Seal

    The one in Grass Valley, CA 95945 also closed recently and the building has been remodeled by STARBUCKS! I can remember eating at the one on Garey when it first opened.

  • Richard Nichols

    It’s truly sad. I used to go there as a kid. Up until two weeks ago I was taking my kids there. Hopefully one day Pomona will get another Arbys.

  • Andy

    When I was in high school, I went to old old Arbys (on Mountain Ave??). The sight of mechanized meat slicing under red infrared heat lamps in the dimly lit old restaurant made a lasting impression on me. That sight left me with no desire to eat what I ordered nor to visit Arby’s again. Despite living nearby on Towne and Arrow, I never visited the Arby’s on Garey Ave even though it was so close by. I wonder what it will become?

  • Andy

    BTW, I was in Oxnard / Port Hueneme about a week ago and passed by a H. Salt Fish and chips. This one appeared to be better condition than the old one you went to. Reminded me of your post and your colleague Wendy L.

    [Who is now in Oxnard, but probably not eating at H. Salt. — DA]

  • Taco Man

    Here comes ANOTHER taco stand to Pomona…

  • Will Plunkett

    One of my earliest memories of being here in the IE is eating at that Arby’s (it was one of the few fast food places aside from McDonald’s that I recognized and liked from Ohio; it was hard to find Wendy’s back then here). Sad to see it go, but unfortunately, it doesn’t surprise me.

  • Danny Mac

    Lived behind “fast food row” on Las Vegas Av growing up and remember the opening of McDonald’s (15cent hamburgers), Taco Bell (fire ring & 18cent chili burgers), Arby’s and McDaniel’s Market (now U Haul). Went by last night and Sizzler had only 3 cars in parking lot probably next to fall. Across street old Stater Bros Market now vacant over 2 years. Foothill and Garey shopping center vacant and on and on vacant, vacant, vacant, throughout the City but building new homes on E. Bonita with already overcrowded schools and no businesses to cater to..ugh.

  • Wendy Leung

    The Arby’s in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada also closed.

    Andy, you must’ve been near the harbor. Let me know the next time you’re in town. We’ll go to Topper’s.

  • DebB

    How sad is it that I drove by there just yesterday and didn’t even notice the missing hat? OK, it was daylight and the hat wouldn’t have been lit, but still…

    Arby’s wouldn’t count among my favorite restaurants, but I enjoyed their sandwiches from time to time. Unfortunately, this economy can’t support “from time to time” businesses of any kind.

    BTW, I saw “The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel” on Memorial Day weekend and loved it! Except that it made me a little sad, I think because I have this fantasy of being like the Judi Dench character, but don’t in reality see myself as that adventurous a person. Oh well, everything will be all right in the end. So if everything is not all right, it is not yet the end.

    [Deb is quoting a signature line of the movie. Everything was all right at the end of the movie, which was how we knew it was the end. That, and the credits. –DA]

  • shirley wofford

    I wonder what has happened to the Arby’s in Spokane WA. When we visited relatives in Chattaroy a couple years ago, everyone wanted quick food, and we drove to the nearest Arby’s–about 20 miles. I had an apple/walnut chicken salad which was delicious. How sad for the rurals there, if they have lost their closest fast food.

    Speaking of the movie, “Best Exotic……….”. Not only did we get to see this marvelous group of British actors together, in the same movie–it also had Dev Patel, the young star of, “Slumdog Millionaire”–and he held his own. I loved it!

  • The New Diner

    There are two other Arby’s location with the hat sign and the chuckwagon shaped building within 40 miles of Pomona.

    Huntington Beach near the Bella Terra Shopping Center and on Lincoln Blvd in either La Palma or Buena Park.

    Hopefully they haven’t closed!

    [I agree. Thanks for the info on the old restaurants, New Diner. — DA]

  • Frank Girardot

    I used to live up the street from there. Wow. That whole stretch of North Garey looks nothing like it did 25 years ago. Maybe it’s a good thing for Pomona, but it’s also a sad thing for us nostalgia buffs.

  • ArchtMig

    re: H. Salt Fish and Chips in Oxnard. The building is still there for now, but not for long. The business was on month to month and had not been granted a long term lease extension and was forced to close their doors last month. The property owner has signed a deal to bring in some other franchise to that location.

    BTW, there is an Arby’s on Main Street in Ventura with an original neon hat sign. I didn’t realize those signs were so scarce. I guess it’s good we have one of the few here in Ventura.

    [The signs are rare, but it’s the signs combined with the chuckwagon building, as in Pomona, that are really scarce. — DA]

  • Matt W

    Hey David just wanted to let you know the Arby’s in Ontario on Milliken has closed as well this week!!!! something must be up with the fast food chain…. It will be replaced by Holiday Cafe and Drive Thru not sure what kinda place that is going to be.

    [With that name, maybe it will be open on Sundays, unlike Chick-fil-A. — DA]

  • Ann Zipser

    We have an original Arby’s Cowboy Hat sign in Traverse City Michigan that needs to be taken down. Anyone interested in having it for the cost of removal?

  • Vicki Bennett

    RIP Arby’s!!! My first job was at that Arby’s many moons ago. Ahhh the memories!!!

  • 1reallytaxed1

    With today’s rules and strict sign regulations the days of iconic symbols of entrepreneurship and true Americana are dwindling away never to be permitted again 🙁