Sandy's in Maquoketa, Iowa opened around February of 1972. One of the last of the Sandy's to ever open, it was located on the edge of the business district on 2nd street. This location was typical of Sandy's locations as it not only bordered the business district but the residential homes as well. Sandy's was one of the first of the fast foods to come to this town of 6,100 people. The location was so convenient that it was certainly warmly welcomed to the community.
Jim Kelley was owner of Maquoketa Sandy's and he explained that Sandy's already had booming business in Davenport, Iowa as well as Dubuque, Iowa and Maquoketa was half way in between the two. He said that it just seemed to reason that the people of this proud town would enjoy eating Sandy's hamburgers in their hometown too just as they experienced in the bigger cities. How right he was! Sandy's exploded in Maquoketa and did incredible business from the start! Business was so good that Jim and his partners opened a pizzaria called "Pizza King" in the heart of the city as well! Pizza hut soon came to town and that was history for the Pizza King.
Jim Kelley was not only owner of Sandy's in Keokuk, he was also the accountant for Sandy's. Business was booming in the mid 1960's for Sandy's and the drive-in had quickly outgrown the bookkeeping system which was at place at the time. Brick Lundberg was famous for bringing in to the corporation nothing but the best and Mr. Kelley was no exception.
Mr. Kelley was a graduate of East Moline High School (U.T.H.S.) and also St. Ambrose University. When he took over, accounting was funneled up to Dubuque, Iowa where an independent firm maintained the numbers. Eventually, Sandy's grew to the point of having their own computer system and the Dubuque firm was no longer needed.
Mr. Kelley and Ted Vlahos, owner of Moline, Illinois Sandy's developed a mutual admiration for each other's hard work ethics and helped each other out while working for Sandy's. That strong friendship continues to this day!
Mr. Kelley has provided pictures of Maquoketa Sandy's which is an important milestone for this website. Apart from a drawing of the last generation Sandy's buildings, the mini and the maxi, no picture appeared on this site of one of these locations (existing as Sandy's, several pictures of what these locations look like today appear on various pages). Not only has Mr. Kelley provided pictures of Maquoketa Sandy's (which was a mini) but he has provided pictures of the original Sandy's sign as well as interior shots!
Mr. Kelley explained that the "mini" concept was introduced especially for smaller cities such as Maquoketa. Sandy's could enter a city at a lower cost yet provide the same great service and product which could be found nationwide! Originally Maquoketa's location, which is on the edge of the residential as well as the business sections, was scoffed at as being a terrible choice. How wrong the critics were as Sandy's exploded from day one, becoming one of the quickest locations to turn a profit!
Sandy's was famous for promotions as can be seen in this advertisement. Special thanks to Sandy's Super-fan Chris Bryant Gerdes who has provided an image of this very cup in the promotion!
Sandy's turned into Hardees in 1973 in Maquoketa along with ninety percent of all Sandy's in the country. Hardees remained in the city but eventually closed when McDonalds came to the area. The location then became home to social services and today in 2004 is alternative school for Maquoketa High School. Here we see in late 1972 Sandy's merger with Hardees resulting in what was to come. Sandy's is welcoming the Sand"ee" which in actuality is Hardees key burger the Deluxe Husk"ee". In 1973 Hardees would purchase Sandy's thus ending one of the greatest fast food drive-ins of all time.
As previously mentioned, Mr. Kelley has provided historic pictures of one of the last Sandy's ever to exist! The Sandy's building show in these pictures is commonly mistaken as Hardees (who used these buildings and design after the 1973 take-over of Sandy's) but they are actually the last generation Sandy's build-outs! Thank you Mr. Kelley for providing these historic shots as these final Sandy's locations only operated in a window of one to two years period of time!
Notice in these pictures the classic Sandy's light globe which has sold for $150 on ebay! The Sandy's light globe is one of the most outstanding pieces of all Sandy's memorabilia! Incredibly, the final Sandy's menuboard is also shown! A duplicate copy of this sign, that miraculously exists today, is on the Columbia, Missouri page! The employees are in full Sandy's uniform including plaid apron and necktie as well as the plaid berets with pom-pom!
Next is a picture of the outside of Sandy's! One can not help but think of Hardees when viewing this picture. However, the Sandy's light globes on the inside of the building give it away!!!!! Presenting The last generation Sandy's building! Pay special attention to the borders on the top sides of the buildings and you will see that they are Sandy's plaid!
Soon it would all be over. In one and one-half year, Sandy's would sadly be gone forever.
Notice the Sandy's sign now with Hardees inserts.
Finally, Mr. Kelley provides one of the most historic pictures... to go along with the last generation building, a last generation sign in full color! Sandy's was incredible!
One can now see the generations of Sandy's buildings! Sandy's had four generations of the classic buildings. First was the walk-up drive-in which sometimes appears in various pictures surrounded by glass which was known as the winter cover. The classic Sandy's sign appeared as well. If you go to the Sandy's Memphis, Tennessee page, you can make out a stunted variation of this sign.
Second came a completed version of the first, now as a sit down and eat inside restaurant, still with the original classic sign.
Next came what was known as the third generation building which most likely started appearing in 1967 along with a new Sandy's sign.
This was followed by the final Sandy's building which is commonly thought of as a Hardees build-out, even though it was Sandy's. This final edition had two sizes, the maxi, which was for large volume stores and the mini which was for smaller cities and smaller volume stores.
Other variations of Sandy's appeared as well. Mall locations were in existence as early as 1968! Downtown locations, some with breakfast menus were built as well. Peoria, for example, was placed in an existing downtown building with no resemblance on the outside to Sandy's and no parking! Some locations, including Mr. Andris' (who was one of the main players in Sandy's), location in Oklahoma, even had extremely successful drive-up windows!
Mr. Jim Kelley also provided pictures from his stellar Sandy's collection!
The Sandy's smiley sticker "attitude" was actually an advertising campaign in the early 1970s, using the smiley and associating it with Sandy's as a fun place to eat. The smiley is here combined with the motivational word "attitude" for the Sandy's workforce.
Brick Lundberg, founder of Sandy's was a legendary for his gift of motivation. Sandy's had motivational tapes for workers by Earl Nightengale. This binder contains eight motivational tapes.
The Earl Nightengale motivational tapes were also accompanied by the motivational record! Special thanks to Larry Ware of Peoria, Illinois WIRL Radio for providing a scan of this rare album and please visit the Peoria, Illinois page for his comments regarding his fond memories of Sandy's glory days in the Peoria area!
Sandy's had a NBA Shoot Pass Dribble competition and the following are promotional materials from that time period.
Football Hall of Famer Bart Starr appeared at the Sandy's 1968 convention in Peoria, Illinois. Here is his autograph on Mr. Kelley's business card!
If you popped a twelve ounce bottle of pop, you needed a Sandy's cover to cork the bottle!
This unbelievable piece is a Sandy's coin which presented its bearer with a free drink, fries and burger!
Brick Lundberg was a believer in a sound body and highly suggested that every one use this Sandy's excercise machine and cover, especially when travelling.
Sandy's golf balls.
Sandy's ball point ink pen holder
Sandy's key ring.
Every Sandy's had an operating statement book which broke down every aspect of the store into figures and statistics. Here is Maquoketa, Illinois!
Everyone could use a Sandy's ruler.
Sandy's suit cover. Another version is known to have been in existence.
Notice the Sandy's girl icon head at the end of Sandy's swizzle sticks!
Sandy's zippo lighter with your name engraved on the back is one of the great Sandy's promotions. They were for employees as well as special guests of Sandy's.
Many thanks to Mr. Jim Kelley for adding to this site's collection of Sandy's memorabilia!
If you have any memorabilia, pictures or stories of Sandy's in Maquoketa, Iowa or elsewhere, please email me!