Sandy's Fort Dodge, Iowa

Sandy's Fort Dodge, Iowa

Opened on Friday, January 8th, 1965, the Fort Dodge, Iowa Sandy's location was store number eighty-two in the chain's history. The Fort Dodge location was the first to open in the new year which proved to be a banner one for Sandy's which at the time was exploding with location openings across the midwest. Sandy's was located at 2317 - 5th Ave. South, in the Crossroads Shopping Center area off of Highway 20 and was ahead of its time offering full service until 11 p.m. weekdays and until midnight on the weekends for the hungry customers. Special thanks to Sandy's Super-fan Chris Bryant Gerdes who provided the following incredible images!!!

Here we see Fort Dodge's successful attempt to cater to the communities needs. For those who do not eat meat on Sundays, cheese sandwiches were offered at a great price as a tasty alternative. Later, popular fish sandwiches were introduced (for pictures of the fish sandwich, please see page two of the memorabilia pages which can be found by clicking on the grand opening picture on the home page of this website).

Sandy's strength was found in the founders of the corporation. They were experts at marketing and always had something going on when you visited Sandy's. The following promotion is of a record featuring popular artist of the time for only $1!

Highway 20 had just gone thru a widening project. Sandy's thanked the locals in this ad for patronizing the drive-in during this construction. Incredibly, Fort Dodge Sandy's was giving out hot/cold totes free to customers while they lasted. Also included in the give-aways was the most popular Sandy's item of them all, the Sandy's glass. Before the days of big burgers, Sandy's owners started offering double decker burgers which were not on the menu. Customers knew that they were available and would ask for them for a few cents more. Eventually, McDonald's introduced the double decker cheeseburger, presumably after "discovering" the double-decker burger at Sandy's. The Hi-Lo featured here is Sandy's double decker cheeseburger. Sandy's most famous burger was the Big Scot which was a copy of McDonald's Big Mac, only its topping was something similar to cole slaw and tasted outstanding.

Tenderloins, fish & chips, triple thick shakes and the Big Scot were four of Sandy's claims to fame. As outstanding as McDonalds french fries were, Sandy's was known to have better tasting fries. Come as you are, hungry! was the motto and come they did as Sandy's became more popular with each passing day.

Sandy's always had an incredible promotion going on and Christmas time was no exception. Kewanee, Illinois Sandy's had a letter to Santa promotion in which every child received a free hamburger for sending in their Christmas wish list. Fort Dodge Sandy's gave each child a free candy and toy filled stocking just for stopping by!

Not to be outdone in the summer, one of Sandy's many promotions included their very own firetruck, a true piece of classic Americana!

In 1972, Sandy's was in need of capital for their expansion plans and to keep up with the increasingly fierce competition. Sandy's merged that year with Hardees who had the assets but lacked strong leadership. The two companies were to remain seperate but sadly it was to Sandy's advantage to allow a Hardees buy-out of the company and within a few years, Sandy's would cease to exist. Sandy's Super-fan Chris Bryant Gerdes has allowed us a glimpse of the morphing together of Sandy's and Hardees. This amazing advertisement shows Sandy's new burger, the Deluxe Huskee. Little did unsuspecting Sandy's fans know but the new reality was that this was Hardees signature burger. There was nothing new other than it was new to the Sandy's customer. The changes were subtle but quickly became reality.

Hardees jingle at the time was "Hurry on down to Hardees where the burgers are charco-broiled". Here we see a variation on that theme as the customers are being prepped for the eventual turn-over..."Swing down to Sandy's where the burgers are charco-broiled". No longer "Come as you are, hungry". Goodbye Big Scot burger. So long Scottish dancing girl. The ad featured below is quite possibly the first advertisement ever for Sandy's without the Sandy's Scottish girl featured in the ad. Soon Sandy's itself would never be featured again.