History: Looking back at South Shore of yesteryear


Publisher’s note: The following is a walk through history by South Lake Tahoe resident John Spinola.

Walk with me … Farfy’s Fundominiums, Cantina Los Tres Hombre (they had one in North Shore, too), The Cook Book, 89th St. Bar and Grill, The Egg Works (hats everywhere), Accurate TV at the Y by what used to be AAA, Marlee Crafts (both at the Y and in the Rural Squirrel building), Al’s Chevron Way, Handy Andy, Frank’s, Straw Hat, Winchell’s, Happy Steak, Tahoe Records and Tapes, Sierra Bookshop, Sports LTD (at the Y only), Lampson’s Plaza, 25 cents ice cream at Thrifty, San Francisco Deli, Nautilus, Sprouse-Reitz, Miller’s Outpost, no Blockbuster, no Staples, 50’s Drive In, Holland’s Donuts (one in Harrah’s too), Kinney Shoes, Los Aquires, Juicy’s Burgers, Tahoe Bike Shop, The Jewelry Factory, The Outdoorsman, the superslide with burlap bag and wax paper, The Cuckoo’s Nest, Long John Silver’s, Flukey’s arcade with highball, Poor Pedro’s, Hoss Hog’s, Rico’s Pizza, Max’s Market (I knew Max), Tep’s (Samurai location), Wienerschnitzel, Orophino’s, Killer Chicken (this was a garage at one time), Lake Tahoe Community College, Bayer’s Bagel Bakery (this was also a hi-fi store, shoe store and auto repair), Chapel of the Bell’s was at one time a fruit stand and record store, only one Red Hut, Whittlesea taxi, Payless/Lucky with the inside connection, The Dead Head, New York Pizza on the end of their building, main post office at Cork and More, STI (South Tahoe Intermediate), Women’s Center was a church, Tag’s Toys, Sutton and Son, Hot Dogger, Steve’s Deli, Tawny’s Naturally, The Fresh Apple, Sambo’s, Lyon’s, Pet N Co, Tahoe Savings, Swensen’s with the indoor connection to the bookshop, Shakey’s (Teps’), The Drive-In (yes kids Tahoe had a drive-in), Fantasy Inn with their “local flood rates”, Chevron and Mc D’s in different locations, Mt. High Records, Bandanas, Two Guy’s from Italy, “Lake Wildwood”, The Tiltin’ Hilton, Keno Bob’s, Crescent V Center, Lawrence’s, Monks Pizza, Greyhound Bus Station(all by itself), Bob’s Big Boy, Cecil’s Deli, Paul Kennedy’s Steakhouse, Harrah’s parking lot on the California side(Embassy), Turtle’s, Sahara Tahoe, High Sierra, Lily’s, Barney’s, Park Tahoe, The Nugget, First Draft Choice, Midnight Mine, After Dark, The Warehouse, no traffic lights at 3rd Street, Black Bart or Al Tahoe.

 

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Comments (27)
  1. Bill Kingman says - Posted: April 1, 2013

    My standing ovation! What a total treat. Thank you, John!

  2. Paula Shirts says - Posted: April 1, 2013

    Fantastic memories! Boy, did I love The Cook Book. There was no better place to go on a snow day once you could get out of the driveway. Some others that I remember: Lakeside Theater (“the show”), The Sewing Urge, Good Omen, the very short-lived Full Moon Restaurant, Levinjo’s Pizza, Snowflake Drive-in (no wait, that’s still there!), The Cheesecake Factory, Baskin Robbins, both Cornets, the chinese restaurant the Wongs ran, Shakey’s Pizza, the old Lawrence’s, Joseph Magnin’s, The Record Shoppe, Martha Washington’s.

  3. Old Long Skiis says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    John Spinola, Bill Kingman, Paula Shirts
    Good list John! I’d like to expand on it a bit and add a few more. Before Scuzas,Hoss Hogs and Poor Pedros there was a basque style resturaunt there that was called Poor Pierre’s that had a thick layer of sawdust on the floor. They had good food as I recall.
    South Tahoe Intermediate was the High School before they built STHS up on Gardner mtn. Sambos was originally called Little Black Sambos and on the sign out front there was a picture of a tiger chasing little black sambo.
    Lake Tahoe Community College was on hi way 50 in what used to be Gerkens motel.
    Paula Shirts, Wally Wong and family owned Mings Chinese Resturaunt. My folks started “The Party House”, a Hallmark card and gift shop, next door on the other side of our store was a butcher shop and next to that was a paint store.
    Before it was a Chevys mexican resturaunt it was Carlos Murphy’s. A long time ago it was Lawrences Economy Store,(School clothes for little bobby!).
    A few new additions to the list. Orange Julius which was roughly in the area here McDdonalds is now by Wildwood. The Rural Squirrel was a Ski Shop which which later became Stuffy’s Deli and then The Penguin, a place for casino workers to buy their black and whites.The short lived Walrus and the Carpenter up on Kingsbury.Texaco Star and Bar where the car wash is now on Reno and 50. Izzy’s burgers was once a pet store with a lion for sale in a cage made out of chicken wire and 2x4s.
    So much more to tell but I gotta run.
    Thank you John for the memories. Take care, OLS

  4. Mama Bear says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    OMG!! The memories! Thanks, John and the others for a trip down memory lane. I have been in Tahoe since 1975. Raised both of my kids here. Left for a while and came back. So many memories!
    WOW!

  5. 30yrlocal says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    Fun lists! What was the restaurant and hotel (turned timeshare) on Ski Run next to the now expanded marina? Spent many nights after work at the old bowling alley on Kingsbury too.

  6. Toogee says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    30yr, the Fon Du Lac that was on Ski Run?

  7. FUN IN THE SUN says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    TAHOE TOGS CLOTHING STORE, EFFIES DRESS SHOP AT THE CORNER OF SKI RUN AND “50″, YOUNGS VERITY STORE, SKI RUN AND 50 DELBOWS MARKET AT SKI RUN AND “50″ WHERE RED HUT IS NOW, IT USED TO BE A HOTEL AND MARKET, TAHOE SANDS HOTEL, ART AND LOLAS GIANT BURGERS,HAMBURGER HAVEN AT THE “Y” AND BIJOU, AMERICAN LEGION USED TO BE THE HIGH SCHOOL IN THE EARLY 50′S, CARPENTERS HALL USED TO BE THE 5TH & 6TH GRADE SCHOOL AND WAS LOCATED AT THE “Y” WHERE LONDON FOG WAS, HARDING’S BAKERY, THE BAL BIJOU, YOUNGS MARKET, JODY’S DONUT DEN WHERE THE BOTTLE SHOP IS NOW AT PIONEER AND “50″, CRESENT “V” RIDING STABLES AT PARK AND “50″AND ACROSS THE STREET WAS LAKESIDE THEATER, SEAGRAVE’S BEACH AND HARBOR, THE FOND DU LAC LODGE ON LOWER SKI RUN, TAHOE VALLEY DRUG STORE WAS OUR ONLY SCHOOL IN THE 40′S,SPRINGMYERS GARAGE,I COULD GO ON BUT THEIR ARE FEW LEFT WHO REMEMBER,
    THANKS FOR THE MEMORIES

  8. John S says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    Thanks Kae and thanks to all who have commented.

  9. Laketoohigh says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    What was the name of the beauty college down by Wildwood on 50? Cheap haircuts, but you took your chances on quality.:-) The hi fi store was a Lombards stereo. Bills appliance at the Y. El Dorado audio where Round Table Pizza is now was Kevin Cole’s first business in town. Big O tires where the fireplace store is now. The Honda dealership that was then the Charter Cable store. On and on.

  10. Robert Albin says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    Hey Bill Kingman, do you remember St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church where the Women’s Center was? How about Lampson’s Market where McDonald’s is at the Y. I was a butcher there and my boss, Art, open a meat store where Overland Meat is today. Art took the Walk-in and Freezer from Lampson’s and they are still running to this day. Safeway at the Y and Sprouse Riet. Farfies Pizza, the Fish Market and then Jerry opened the first wedding chapel there. It was the first on the CA side. How about the roller rink at Zephyr Cove. The Pot Belly Inn had some of the best live music in town or Jake’s on Ski Run always had live music. Seeing B.B. King at harrah’s for the cost of two drinks.

  11. Old Long Skiis says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    Chris,
    It was a young lion and pretty cool to watch. Confined in a small cage and yes it was made of chicken wire and 2x4s.
    I bought an Iguana at that pet store in the mid 60′s which fell prey to our “lion”, our house cat. God rest yea Col. Sanders the Iguana.
    The lion was real, but I don’t recall the name of the pet shop. Across the dirt parking lot from the pet shop, (which is now Izzy’s), was Springmeyers garage where we had our International Harvester Scout worked on. That building, which is still there, was later occupied by Harrision Radiator Works for several years, dirt floors and all!
    Good times growin’ up in South Lake Tahoe! OLS

  12. Les Wright says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    Don’t forget Jason’s Shingle on Ski Run with the hot tubs in the late 60′s.
    Dr Dave Sorokwasz’s Vetinary Clinic on the street that is no more, next to Fantasy Inn.

    The orginal Fantasy Inn was at the bottom of Ski Run by the marina as well.

    good job everyone.

  13. 30yrlocal says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    The Polar Bear in the motel front at Stateline, Tahoe Teriyaki (next to where Tahoe Tom’s is) and Bella Union (before McPs when it was on the other side of 50). The ski tow at South Tahoe High (I didn’t live here then, but when we came skiing we sometimes stopped there when snowing higher up).

  14. Robert says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    Don’t forget the Lean Too at Wildwood!

  15. Bijou Bill says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    The Bella Union/Tahoe Teriyaki(BU-TT) golf tournament for local food and bev employees that required participants to ingest certain party favors and always resulted in outrageous fun in the 70′s.

  16. Old Viking says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    Let’s not forget Zip Zander’s Rents, Pinky’s Pizza, Bubba’s BBQ, Tahoe Burger Bar, the Drive-In or Lakeside Theatre on Friday nights and T-Car Speedway on Saturday nights…

  17. Old Long Skiis says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    One more old timey thing,
    South Tahoe Refuse(STR) first started out with the name as “Serve U Garbage” in 1962(?). Herb Caen even wrote about it in his column for the SF Chronicle. The name was changed to STR but still remains on some papers from way back when. A small start up company with one truck, two guys, one mechanic and a lady answering the phone in the office which also served as the shop and parking garage for that one truck.
    Sorry Jeff and Jon D, I had to spill the beans as I always thought that was a funny name as did many others.
    Once a garbageman, always a garbageman.OLS

  18. LeAnne Kankel says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    Before there was a South Lake Tahoe, we had Tahoe Valley, Al Tahoe and Bijou as separate little “towns”.

    The Al Tahoe post office was where Denny’s is now, and there were pony rides at that same corner about where US Bank is.

    Johnson Boulevard did not extend to Al Tahoe Boulevard, You had to turn down Happy Homestead Cemetery Road (behind the police station now) to get to Al Tahoe.

    The police station was behind the bowling alley.

    Old Safeway. There was a grocery store where TJ Maxx is now, but I can’t remember the name. Sprouse Reitz or Cornet (can’t remember which) was next door where Mikasa used to be. Eagle Thrifty was on Kingsbury Grade.

    Inks Bijou and Al Tahoe.

    Jim Burgett’s Fun House.

    Auto Row: Shehadi Chevrolet, Carroll Shelby Ford, Pardee Volkswagen

    STHS had its homecoming bonfires on the vacant lot where Motel 6 is now, complete with outhouse on top.

    Tahoe was such a great place to grow up!

  19. tahoeadvocate says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    Don’t forget when the post office was located in a trailer where Raley’s parking lot by Park Ave is now and was called “Stateline, California”

  20. Laketoohigh says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    Kennedy’s steak house, John’s Tahoe Nugget($4.99 Prime Rib dinner, $1.00 shrimp cocktail) Cedarwood Lodge, the library where the Attic is now……

  21. Steve says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    Lest some have forgotten, or didn’t even remember, stumbling out of the Snow Goose tavern on upper Ski Run above Pioneer Trail, if it was snowing and slippery, good luck. Preceded by the happy hour at El Pavo’s mexican restaurant and bar with its Thursday night T-Shirt shows, where Marriott is now.

    I must confess, I wish the Cook Book was back with its 500+ different kinds of omelettes.

  22. Passion4Tahoe says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    As Fun in the Sun recalls, I also remember Effies dress shop. I used to walk by there and look at the pretty dresses in the window. There was also Tahoe Togs, Old McDonald’s Farm on Ski Run and the Hogie Hut. Closer to Stateline – Martha Washington’s Ice Cream, Rene the Jeweler and the Donut Deal. And Tahoe Tom’s was a Flying A gas station. Fun trip down memory lane!

  23. Old Long Skiis says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    To all that wrote in with their remembrances of old South Lake Tahoe, I thank each and every one of you. A big thanks goes to Bill Kingman for his “Then and Now” series which started the ball rolling.
    Many of the names listed of old places in town brought a smile to my face! Some I had forgoten about but with a bit of a nudge it all comes back.
    Yes LeAnne, Tahoe was a great place to grow up and it still is! Things are changing for the better around here and we’ll see what happens come this summer.
    Let’s not forget our past because that’s what makes us who we are today as we look into the future.
    Thanks for the memories, Old Long Skiis

  24. David Kurtzman says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    The Schmidt family built Schmidt’s Bakery which became the Swiss Chalet. Cockings Restaurant, after a few changes, became Aspen Realty and now ReMax. Who can forget Poor Pierre’s with the sawdust floor. It became Poor Pedro’s, Hoss Hoggs, and ultimately Scusa. The list goes on.

  25. Laurie Brazil says - Posted: April 2, 2013

    The Captain’s Table before it was The Fresh Ketch, Bueno’s, Midnight Mine, LTCC in the Motel on Hwy 50 and the best having ice cream at the Emerald Bay Restaurant…at the top of EB.. when we were camping with the family at D.L. Bliss.

  26. Dan Stroehler says - Posted: April 3, 2013

    I remember a little motel on lower Ski Run named “Villa Montreaux”. Also, movie theatres at Park Ave. (next to a small Post Office), another at the Y sort of where the import store is now, and in the back corner between the K Mart and Raley’s-all operating at the same time. Certainly not forgetting the little market on what is now the Montbleu property.