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View Full Version : Being Razed: Little Piece of Studebaker's South Bend (good pic)



BobPalma
06-15-2012, 07:33 AM
From South Bend SDCer Don Galeziewski comes the sad news that the former Toasty Shop, a short half-block east of The Studebaker Administration Building at the corner of Michigan and Bronson, is being demolished. The neighborhood has deteriorated to such an extent, and the population density during the day is such, that it will no longer support that type of deluxe coffee shop and short-order cafe.

I looked through The South Bend Tribune on line this morning but find no mention of the impending demolition. Don says the demolition fence is up and destruction is imminent, so perhaps there will be a small item in "The Trib" when it's actually a pile of rubble.

"Toasty's" was a neat place where many hard-core Studebaker folks frequently dined and swapped lies. Studebaker administrators ate there, too, including Sherwood Egbert.

At the risk of boring "regulars" here, I'll repeat the story of cousin George Krem and I eating a late breakfast at The Toasty Shop one early summer day in 1963. As we paid our checks at the cash register, we saw Sherwood Egbert sitting at the lunch counter, working on what was probably his first pack of cigarettes for the day and who knows how many cups of coffee.

We were no more than 20 feet from him, but were simply too shy to go over, offer words of thanks and encouragement, and perhaps get his autograph on a napkin or something. For my part, I consider that THE missed opportunity of all our adventures in South Bend during the summers of 1960-1963....but at ages 17 (me) and 21 (George), we were simply too reserved of character, as difficult as that might be to comprehend, to approach him. "Mr. Egbert" was by himself, too, so we would not have been interrupting any conversation he might have been having with fellow "execs." Sigh.

Both of us ate there many times, individually and with other friends through the years. I looked forward to meeting my friend Don at Toasty's for lunch in the early 1990s when "on location" for Studebaker facility photo shoots to prepare Turning Wheels articles at that time.

The Toasty Shop was known as The Paramount in later years before closing for good several years ago. Note Dick Quinn's post below as to the eatery's spelling.

It was a classy, homey little eatery, the type of which is disappearing from the landscape too often nowadays for this nostalgic observer. Perhaps someone has a photo of the place and will post, or I can try to find one later in the day as time allows.

RIP, "Toasty's." BP

R_David
06-15-2012, 09:31 AM
That is one of the coolest Studebaker stories that I have ever heard. There should be some sort of effort by us younger SDCers to collect these types of stories, as the folks in my generation weren't born until after Studebaker had ceased making cars we won't have the type of close connection to the company that many SDCers do.

Now if I could just get Ken Burns to do a documentary on the Studebaker corporation and the SDC movement that followed...
Wouldn't that be something!

Andy R.
06-15-2012, 09:37 AM
Toasty Shoppe - One of the best names EVER for a coffee shop/diner.

8E45E
06-15-2012, 01:48 PM
Toasty Shoppe - One of the best names EVER for a coffee shop/diner.

Maybe it will re-open as a tanning salon under the same name.

Craig

Green53
06-15-2012, 01:55 PM
I have stopped there for lunch during past May swap meets. The place does have history.

Denny L

White Hawk
06-15-2012, 03:49 PM
TOASTY SHOPPE has special memories for me and my wife, Mary.

Mary's 1st time driving solo: she and a girl friend went to TOASTY's and as they were leaving, pulling out onto Michighan Steet, the steering broke on the car and it had to be towed. The car was a Chevrolet, so what could you expect.

In the 1960-63 era I went to TOASY'S for their foot-long hot dogs ( almost once a week during the summer). As for a Studebaker connection................we were both clue less!

Chris_Dresbach
06-15-2012, 04:36 PM
I saw the demo fence put up about three days ago. Unfortunately the place has been empty for years. There has never been much of an attempt to open a new restaurant there that I can remember, heck, not even a "for sale" sign in the window. I think my mom used to work there.

Roscomacaw
06-15-2012, 07:29 PM
I made a point of dining there during meets of the past. Sad to hear of it's demise.

SN-60
06-15-2012, 10:53 PM
To: Bob Palma,-----Really not trying to make You feel worse, and of course hindsight's always 20/20, but Your absolutely right... that was a HUGE missed oppurtunity.

wise raymond
06-16-2012, 02:00 AM
thanks Bob Palma what a great story i get goose bumps just reading about it, i have been to south bend 6 times or more over the years drove all over town just soaking up the scenery taken pictures but i must say i must have mist that place sevreal times . thanks again mr Palma. ray

(S)
06-16-2012, 03:26 AM
Come up to the Great Northwest Bob. We have better coffee and there is a LARGE number of Studebaker fans rebuilding the cars and the shelters for them as if it were South Bend. circa 1950-1964

More Studebaker tech, fans, and info lives in the NW than anywhere I have seen. And we have by far the most studes per capita on the road than anywhere.........

Studebaker Wheel
06-16-2012, 03:32 AM
http://i230.photobucket.com/albums/ee285/studeq/newsgroup/toastyshop.jpg?t=1339834868

I ate at The Toasty Shop dozens of times. This photo was taken in July 1983 during the Intl meet week (note sign marquee "Studebaker Week...). The car in the foreground is a 1931 model 90 President Eight belonging to Sherm Merchant of New York. The car in the background my '40 Champion Coupe Delivery. The guy posing I thought was a local street person but he informed me that he worked at Studebaker in the styling department (honest!). In any event this is looking southeast in the parking lot. Note the spelling "The Toasty Shop."

BobPalma
06-16-2012, 05:54 AM
To: Bob Palma,-----Really not trying to make You feel worse, and of course hindsight's always 20/20, but Your absolutely right... that was a HUGE missed oppurtunity.

Ed, you're right, of course. Who knows how that conversation with Mr. Egbert might have gone? And if we did have the "nerve" to approach and converse with him, would we have had the presence of mind to secure an autograph?

But when you're 17, who thinks of what life will be like 50-odd years later, eh?

To the best of our memories, George and I never took a camera with us to South Bend...I mean, like most of the people in South Bend at the time, we just thought this [Studebaker] was going to go on forever, so what's to record for posterity? (And besides, some of the places in which we were caught might have resulted in a given camera being confiscated anyway.)

Good memories, though. 'Twas a privilege to have been there at the time, for sure. BP

BobPalma
06-16-2012, 06:05 AM
Come up to the Great Northwest Bob. We have better coffee and there is a LARGE number of Studebaker fans rebuilding the cars and the shelters for them as if it were South Bend. circa 1950-1964

More Studebaker tech, fans, and info lives in the NW than anywhere I have seen. And we have by far the most studes per capita on the road than anywhere.........

'Don't believe I'd challenge your assertion, Mike, if our SDC Forum is any indication! :cool: BP

BobPalma
06-16-2012, 06:11 AM
I ate at The Toasty Shop dozens of times. In any event this is looking southeast in the parking lot. Note the spelling "The Toasty Shop."

Thanks for the correction, Dick. It seems like a subsequent owner, toward "the end," added pe to the name to augment it with a little class, but I may be mistaken.

'Appreciate the clarification; duly noted in the original post as it was indeed Shop in 1963...and for most, if not all, its life before it became The Paramount ever so briefly. BP

Bordeaux Daytona
06-16-2012, 07:10 PM
Ed George , some friends, and I ate there a few times when we would come out to South Bend. We talked about the story about Egbert eating there. There was pictures from South Bend and Studebaker hanging on the walls inside. They food was pretty good and the staff was very nice there too. I thought I had some pictures but they must be prints. I did find a picture from J.M.'s office of the administration building from the tour in 2007. I noticed the sign in the lot across said toasty shop and you can see the building too. It's a shame it'll be gone.
John V.
http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=15835&d=1339891483

StudeMichael
06-16-2012, 07:49 PM
"But when you're 17, who thinks of what life will be like 50-odd years later, eh"?

That is the quote of the day, Bob!

BobPalma
06-16-2012, 11:21 PM
Ed George , some friends, and I ate there a few times when we would come out to South Bend. We talked about the story about Egbert eating there. There was pictures from South Bend and Studebaker hanging on the walls inside. They food was pretty good and the staff was very nice there too. I thought I had some pictures but they must be prints. I did find a picture from J.M.'s office of the administration building from the tour in 2007. I noticed the sign in the lot across said toasty shop and you can see the building too. It's a shame it'll be gone.
John V.
http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=15835&d=1339891483

John; that's an excellent perspective. Thank you for finding and posting that picture.

To understand this photograph, note the street going from the lower right up to the center of the photo. That is Bronson Street.

At the center of the photo, note that Bronson Street ends at Michigan Street.

Michigan Street is one-way at that point, so you would have to turn left from Bronson onto Michigan. You would then immediately go under the railroad tracks to continue north on Michigan.

Now, if you drove "up" Bronson Street in this photo, toward Michigan, imagine yourself stopping at Michigan and waiting for the light to change so you could turn left and go under the railroad tracks.

While you were waiting at the light, The Toasty Shop is that single story building immediately to your right. It has kind of a beige brick wall facing Bronson Street with no windows along Bronson. Access to the place and its parking lot are on the other side of the building, unless you stopped short of passing The Toasty Shop and went up that fresh blacktop alley between The Toasty Shop and the larger white building along Bronson.

This excellent photo, taken from The Studebaker Administration Building, shows you how very close The Toasty Shop was to The Administration Building. It was indeed a short walk from The Adm Bldg to The Toasty Shop for a cup of coffee or lunch, and many Studebaker executives took advantage of that proximity.

Thanks again, John, for making this so understandable with such an appropriate photo. BP

redbullet
06-17-2012, 08:49 PM
It was also a short walk south from the Studebaker dealer, Newman and Altman. Just the other side of the tracks.
I ate there many times when I worked at Newman and Altman and Avanti Motors back in the 60's and early 70's
Tom Mills

BobPalma
06-17-2012, 09:28 PM
It was also a short walk south from the Studebaker dealer, Newman and Altman. Just the other side of the tracks.
I ate there many times when I worked at Newman and Altman and Avanti Motors back in the 60's and early 70's
Tom Mills

Good observation, Tom; thanks.

Tom is correct: Look at the sliver of street in the picture's foreground, the street going right and left across the bottom of the photograph. You can't see much of it, but it is Main Street.

If you went to your left on Main Street in the bottom of the photo, you'd immediately go under the railroad tracks. As soon as you went back up from the underpass, Newman-Altman would be on your left...as Tom says, just on the other side of the tracks on Main Street. BP

Chris_Dresbach
06-17-2012, 09:54 PM
That's the transpo bus stop now. It's amazing how close N&A was to Sherman Shaus/Freeman Spicer.

BobPalma
06-20-2012, 10:01 PM
New photo from SDCer Bob Dudek:

http://bl153w.blu153.mail.live.com/att/GetAttachment.aspx?tnail=0&messageId=3ab91c85-bb4c-11e1-a35c-00215ad9bcc2&Aux=2814|0|8CF1D702533E570||0|0|0|0|2|3,53&maxwidth=220&maxheight=160&size=Att

DEEPNHOCK
06-20-2012, 10:24 PM
I love this kind of pic!!!!
This is what we all need to do in our Studebaker travels.
Find that connection to the past, record it, and share it with anyone and everyone.
There's a lot of guys smiling down on you for (a) taking that pic, and (b) sharing that pic.
As ol' Dave would say... "Good on ya!"
Jeffhttp://forum.studebakerdriversclub.com/images/icons/icon6.png


http://i230.photobucket.com/albums/ee285/studeq/newsgroup/toastyshop.jpg?t=1339834868

I ate at The Toasty Shop dozens of times. This photo was taken in July 1983 during the Intl meet week (note sign marquee "Studebaker Week...). The car in the foreground is a 1931 model 90 President Eight belonging to Sherm Merchant of New York. The car in the background my '40 Champion Coupe Delivery. The guy posing I thought was a local street person but he informed me that he worked at Studebaker in the styling department (honest!). In any event this is looking southeast in the parking lot. Note the spelling "The Toasty Shop."

Mr Speed 53
07-05-2012, 10:48 PM
I kmow this is an old post but wanted to comment since ii am finnaly back registered on the forum.Many Good Times were had by us at the Toasty ! I read in turning Wheels one year that the Plain Brown Wrapper was going to be displayed ant the old museum and delivered on the day after Thanksgiving. We went to South Bend and met Bob and Georgeat the Toasty by chance,then over to the museum to watch the PBR get put on display after listening to many good stories they shared with us. The weather was mild and no salt on the street so bob asked my son if he wanted a ride in PBR and they took off thru what was left of the the old Stude corridor. I can remember hearing the Wonderful Sound and 2 smiling faces under the train bridge heading towards us. Jr and me will never forget this ! Thanks

Chris_Dresbach
07-09-2012, 04:36 PM
Well I have some unfortunate news. As of today (7/9/12) Toasty's is no longer. :(