Thursday, September 19, 2013

Signs of the Times: Donahoo's Golden Chicken

I count it as a great advantage to be fluent in sign language.  In today's world it is not only useful, it is downright necessary to be able to communicate in more than one language.  My abilities have made it possible for me to work as a volunteer interpreter; I, for example, can quickly spot the the happy-chef-in-prairie-schooner silhouette and let those around me (who might think that the amorphous shape was a tragic sign-making accident) know that while it may read, "China King," this sign's previous life was lived as the marquee of what was once Southern California's most-popular fried chicken franchise, Pioneer Chicken.

China King/Hefty Burgers nee Pioneer Chicken
(Source: A, BC, D)

What?  This doesn't make me a sign language interpreter???

Okay, okay, so maybe I'm not fluent in the type of sign language that is "certified," "recognized," or "endorsed" by the ASLTA, but I know a good sign when I see one.  A good chicken sign always speaks to me and dadgum if I don't start speaking right back!

Donahoo's Golden Chicken - Pomona, CA

Such was the case when we happened upon the glory of Donahoo's Golden Chicken in Pomona, CA.  The giant fiberglass rooster roosting atop the stacked, light boxes pierced by a faded-red boomerang had me shouting, "Cocka-doodle-doo!"

It's a good thing one of our foursome was a vegetarian; we
couldn't leave Donahoo's without splitting a three-piece
chicken strip meal - chicken, coleslaw, french fries, and a
house-made dinner roll that comes with a mystery "butter"
spot melted in the cleft.
Do you speak in signs?  Is there a fried chicken restaurant in your town with a beautiful sign?

In the absence of a Donahoo's ad, here is 
one from Pioneer Chicken circa 1979.

Donahoo's Golden Chicken
1074 N Garey Ave
Pomona, CA


Mr. Tiny


  1. I forgot about Pioneer Chicken! Hilarious how the sign was adapted to other things overtime but there is no mistaking the old covered wagon!

    1. You're not alone. I think most people forgot about Pioneer Chicken and that is why most of their signs have gotten the "makeover." Hahaha!!! There are so many of the signs left around LA, but nearly all of them are a meaningless outline to a Chinese Buffet or hamburger stand!

  2. i love a good sign! i take sooooo many sign pictures (most of which look terrible since i take them as we are driving down the road, but that won't stop me!)

    1. I do the same thing!!! I have to remind myself to at least slow down...hahahaha!!!

  3. Mmmmmm Mmmmm good! Makes me think of "Chicken Annie's" near Pittsburgh KS! (It's not a chain) but its all that remains of an old minning town, well that and it's rival Resturamt "Chicken Mary's" 2 seperat e family restaurants that have held the test of time and are finger licking good!