Hundreds of current and past employees got a sneak peak Wednesday of "A Tale of Frisch's Big Boy" inside the original Frisch's Big Boy restaurant in Fairfax, which opened in 1939. The new museum, one section of the Mainliner, will open to the public Thursday.
In a display case there is a Frisch's bowling bag, (yes the restaurant did have a bowling team) cigarette lighters, ashtrays, playing cards and ties, all with the Frisch's logo. There is even a woman's cosmetic case.
CEO Jason Vaughn points out a few comic books. "One of the things a lot of people don't know is there are several editions of a Big Boy comic book. And there's a few editions that we're going to bring out in the summer that Stan Lee actually did the Big Boy comic books."
Vaughn works for NRD Capital which bought Frisch's three years ago. He is determined to carry on the tradition of Dave Frisch. "Not let it anchor us in the past but make sure those tenets were in place to pay the right respects to the past but also be able to move the brand in the future."
Vaughn says he's met with Frisch's granddaughters to determine Frisch was a risk taker, an innovator and cared about family. The CEO says what many people don't know is all the food is made locally.
The museum preview also served as a reunion of sorts for past and present employees. Eighty-six-year-old Paul Schlechty, who cut meat and made soup for 40 years for Frisch's, spotted 83-year-old Dick Mallon, a former division vice president across the room. Schlechty greeted him. "You clean up real good. Daggone. I can't believe this guy's still kickin."
Mallon started working at Frisch's when he was 14, left for the Army and then came back. He worked for the company 45 years.
Both Schlechty and Mallon checked out the memorabilia. Past employees loaned even more stuff to Frisch's. CEO Vaughn got old menus, uniforms and socks.