What ever happened to Carrols?

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There were quite a few Carrols Restaurants in Berks County. They were located in Sinking Spring on Penn Avenue. Also on North 5th Street in Reading, 5th Street Highway in Muhlenberg, and on Lancaster Avenue. Carrols was a typical fast food chain that served hamburgers, fries, shakes. Remnants of this chain may be able to be found in your cupboard; the iconic Looney Tune drinking glasses were sold at this establishment.

Carrols Restaurant

Carrols Restaurant Group is an American franchisee company that was founded in 1960. The original Carrols chain ceased operations in the United States by the mid-1970s. It peaked at about 150 locations in New York and Pennsylvania.

The last unaffiliated Carrols Restaurant existed in Finland. The chain name was eventually bought out by another Finnish fast-food chain, Hesburger. In 2012, Hesburger announced that the brand Carrols would be discontinued.

According to its Wikipedia page, Carrols was an offshoot of the Tastee-Freez company, named for the daughter of Tastee-Freez co-owner Leo Marantz.

Herb Slotnick bought the franchise rights for the New York area and started opening restaurants in the Syracuse, New York area in the early 1960s. They expanded over the years throughout New York State and eventually entering the Pennsylvania market as well. During the 1960s, a yellow slug character served as Carrols’ first mascot, replaced in 1974 by a young blonde boy wearing a tweed suit and a Fedora hat.

Most Carrols restaurant locations were converted to Burger King franchises in 1975, with the less profitable stores shuttering. The company is still the largest operator of Burger King franchises in the country.

Looney Tune character glasses from Carrols

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Nanette B Merrill
Nanette B Merrill
6 years ago

I worked at the 5th and Centre Ave Carrols as a high school kid in 1973-74 much to my parents dismay. My dad said “You’ll work the rest of your life, why do you want to work now when you don’t have to?” Kids!

Tim Patton
Tim Patton
6 years ago

There was one in Sinking Spring (across from McDonald’s) at the sharp right turn to go up Mull Ave. The structure still stands but it is a Tag Shop.

Carol Shipper
Carol Shipper
6 years ago

The Carrols on Lancaster Avenue was originally a “Harveys” , probably in the early to mid sixties.

Christine Mabry
Christine Mabry
6 years ago

My first job ♡ I worked at Carrolls at 5th & Centre Ave location, I lost my job due to affirmative action when it became Burger King

Paul
Paul
6 years ago

I worked for Carrols in sink spring

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[…] Berks County, many locally owned fast food establishments were here for years. Places like “Carrol’s” and “Schell’s” on the  Fifth Street Highway, and […]

Brian Z
Brian Z
4 years ago

I remember going to the Carroll’s in Sinking Spring, early 70s. At one time you could pay extra to get soda in a Looney Tunes “real” glass. We collected them and I have a set.

Dennis Thornton
Dennis Thornton
3 years ago

everything that;s good in this world someone either destroys or ruiens. LEAVE SHIT ALONE pepole.

Jim Ahrens
Jim Ahrens
2 years ago

My brother and I preferred Carrols to Micky D’s and went there often (5th Str. Highway in Muhlenberg Township). Another fast food place I liked was the Red Barn on Lancaster Avenue. It is also long gone.

Jack Griffith
Jack Griffith
1 year ago

I ran Carrols restaurants in Brockville Ontario Canada, Watertown and Ithaca New York for Kirby Bennett Corporation in the 70’s

David M Foster Jr
David M Foster Jr
1 year ago

There were a great restaurant way better than McDonald but they couldn’t compete price wise unfortunately wish they had been the winners absolutely loved going there as a child.

Brenda
Brenda
1 year ago

I remember Carroll’s on Rt.32 &i-84 in Newburgh, NY


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Berks Nostalgia