Howard Johnson Restaurants Are No More – Remember The One In Binghamton?
It's fun to reminisce. Well, about the good times of the past. I often think about places that are no longer in our area, when I pass by the former locations or restaurants, hotels, and other businesses that closed a long time ago.
I was reminded of a couple of former businesses recently as I was driving through Old Front Street in Binghamton, just off Upper Front Street. For a short time, I had a part-time job outside of radio, working the overnight shift at a Texaco gas station on Old Front Street, which was next to the Howard Johnson's Motor Lodge and Restaurant.
The Texaco gas station is long gone, as is the Howard Johnson's, but the building was remodeled and currently is an Econo Lodge & Suites. According to the Highway Host website, the Binghamton Howard Johnson's opened in 1971 and the site was closed and sold in 1994.
While I never stayed at the motor lodge, I did stop into the HoJo's restaurant for lunch and dinner from time to time. If I remember correctly, it was the first place I experienced a fried clam roll. They were so good, and I still make them myself every so often.
As you know, Howard Johnson restaurants faded away over time, except for one last holdout in Lake George, New York, according to the New York Upstate website through the Albany Times-Union. But the article goes on to mention that the restaurant has now closed, stating that it was open as recently as March according to a Howard Johnson fan group.
While there are still many Howard Johnson Hotels around the country, owned and operated by the Wyndham hotel chain, HoJo restaurants are now a thing of the past. I found a website that has pictures of the old Howard Johnson's Motor Lodge & Restaurant on Old Front Street. Check it out here.