When I was a kid, we used to go to the formerly Marriott-owned Roy Rogers restaurant chain at the Meriden Square, near (then) upper-level G. Fox (now "Westfield Meriden", ugh). Sure, it was one of the only fast food eateries at the mall at the time, but they had some distinction over the meganauts McDonald's (never really liked McD's) and Burger King (whose fallen from grace). OK, the large portrait of Roy with a wheat stem in his mouth on the wall kind of scared a tender, younger me but I always dug the unlimited, free fixin's bar no matter how smelly handed/sneezed in sanitary disaster it might've been.
ROY ROGERS LOCATIONS BY NOVEMBER 1980 (courtesy The Hartford Courant). ROCKY HILL LOCATION (NOT LISTED THERE), OPENED LATE DECEMBER 1980.
Ever since the later 1990s, the franchise-run Roy Rogers has been slowly dwindling out of many markets, leaving one oddly-newly built one in (nose-bleed) North Stonington (I know, where?) including the once well-off Connecticut market. Since 2007, free-standing locations have pulled out of Newington (US-5 & CT-15), North Haven (US-5) and Manchester (I-84, Exit 63) to name a few. A good number of former Roy's became home to up-and-coming rival roast beef chain Arby's, whose seen sizable expansion in recent years.
Now, someone go wake up the webmaster at the "hip" newly painted Roy Rogers website, tell them Manchester has been closed for over a year.
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