Sunday, June 8, 2014

Monday: Tony Martinez is spotted downtown and more readers reminisce about Tiny's restaurant downtown

* … TONY: I ran into retired Bakersfield Police officer Tony Martinez this weekend while viewing a terrific exhibit of Instagram art photos at Metro Galleries. Tony is the former community
liaison officer at BPD who suffered a stroke almost exactly a year ago. He looked terrific and it was good to seem him back in the community.

* … TINY'S: The dispute over the location of the old Tiny's restaurant (southeast or northeast corner of Chester and 18 Street?) is resolved. Randy Fendrick was one of more than a dozen readers who shared this take: "The simple answer is that Tiny's was on both sides of the street.  It existed at least from 1938 until 1962 on the southside of 18th Street but was closed to make room for the construction of the Bakersfield Savings and Loan Building, which I believe became Paramount later. They then opened  on the northside of 18th and Chester in about March 1962 and were at that location until 1970.  There is an excellent article in the Californian dated January 30, 1962, tracing the history of the southeast corner building.  I recall that  on the date our daughter was born November 3, Tiny's was at the northeast location as I had breakfast there that morning.

 * … MORE TINY'S: Greg Baziuk had this take: "Tiny's was on both corners. The southeast was the first location.  In 1952 the earthquake damaged the building and it was eventually taken down and replaced with the existing one. Tiny's moved across the street north, on the east corner.  I have dined in both locations with my father back in the 1950s. His office was a block away from the old clock tower.
The southeast location was next to a bank known as Bakersfield Savings and Loan, where I had my first bank account. The bank would give a child a plastic bank with no way to take the money out.  When the bank was full we would take it to the bank and the teller would smash it to retrieve the loot."

 * … AND MORE: Add this from retired oil executive Lynn Blystone: "When I came to Bakersfield in 1963, I ate many a good meal at Tiny's restaurant on the northeast corner of Chester and 18th Street in what is now the old bank building being remodeled.  A favorite was the 'Chubby Steak;'  featuring a small filet from Willard Gold's Quality Meats with a small baked potato, green peas, a small but tasty green salad, roll and drink for $1.50.  Patti and I had our rehearsal dinner in the upstairs.  Yes, Tiny's was definitely on the northeast corner."

 * … LASTLY: And lastly, Billie Lardy said her mother, Ann Jones, worked at Tiny's for many years.  "Tiny's was located on the southeast corner.  The owner's lease ran out and he moved to the northeast corner of Chester band 18th Street across the street. The restaurant never did as well as it did in the original location.

* … MEMORIES: And Vince Calaustro remembers Tiny's when he used to cruise Chester Avenue. "I used to cruise Chester Avenue, 18th and 19th streets back in the mid to late 1960s and Tiny's was on that cruise route, along with Stan's, Jumbos,Micheners, Warrens, Winchells and Andres. Eighteenth and 19th streets had the night life hang-outs which included the Oahu Club (I believe it was the old YMCA or Boys Club Building) and Billy the Blue Grasshopper club which was towards Union Avenue near the old 7-Up Bottling Co. As real cruisers we came into contact with the local BPD on a regular basis. I still remember Officer Middleton and Officer Cerin the traffic cops who patrolled our cruise routes. They were actually pretty cool (even after receiving citations from both) they would park along with us just to make sure we stayed out of trouble. Great community relations! … Back then, I always thought Bakersfield was the epitome of the American Graffiti culture..... Small town, strong values."

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