Shakey’s Pizza was formed on April 30th in Sacramento, California in the year 1954, by Sherwood “Shakey” Johnson and Ed Plummer. Johnson got the nickname “Shakey” because of some neurological damage he suffered as a result of malaria while serving in WWII. During it’s grand opening, Shakey’s only sold beer because the pizza ovens were not yet setup. The profits from the beer sales bought plenty of ingredients for that excellent pizza that was about to be born!
Be sure to add your comments in the “Leave a Reply” section at the bottom of this page
Shakey The Jazzman
Shakey was a huge fan of Dixieland jazz and was a pretty decent piano player himself. He entertained his customers with popular tunes and eventually hired other musicians. He paid them $10 a night and all the pizza and beer they wanted. Not a bad deal back in 1954! Eventually, some of the top jazz acts in the country would find a home at this fine establishment.
Movin’ on Up
Skakey’s began to open more locations and by 1967, he owned 272 pizza parlors in the USA! For cross-traffic, he decided to open stores next to the popular Kinney Shoes. Hey, it worked out well for both companies! In 1968, their first international pizza parlor opened in Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada. By the mid 70s, they also expanded into Asia. Some of those stores are still open over there!
A Family Affair
Going to Shakey’s became a tradition for many families and entire schools would have pizza parties with rows and rows of park benches. Lots of games, pizza and beer for the adults!
Stuckey’s was known for having large windows looking into the prep area so that customers could watch how the pizzas were being made. Kids absolutely loved it!
Shakey Johnson sold his stake in the pizza chain in 1967 for 3 million dollars. The company changed owners a few times and as a result, stores started closing in the USA. Although there was a decline in America, by 1987 Shakey’s Pizza parlors thrived in Asia with almost 200 locations!
The good news is that there are still a few Shakey’s Pizza Parlors open. Below is a current list:
- Culver City
- El Monte
- Huntington Park
- L.A. Cesar Chavez
- L.A. Olympic
- L.A. Sunset
- La Puente
- Monterey Park
- North Hollywood
- Northridge Reseda
- Pico Rivera
- San Gabriel
- Torrance BLVD
- Torrance PCH
San Bernardino County
San Diego County
You can visit Shakey’s website below:
Shakey’s Pizza might have faced some setbacks in the USA, but its unwavering popularity in Asia and few surviving locations in America prove that it is an American classic that is here to stay. With a unique thin crust, a delicious sauce, and a variety of toppings, Shakey’s pizzas have won over the taste buds of generations. And let’s not forget those unforgettable memories of birthday parties and family gatherings at Shakey’s Pizza Parlors, where kids could watch the dough being tossed into the air and eagerly wait for their favorite pie.
If you’re lucky enough to live near one of the few remaining Shakey’s Pizza Parlors, make sure to pay them a visit to experience this classic American pizza joint. Alternatively, you can order online from their website for delivery or takeout. Either way, make sure to indulge in a Shakey’s Pizza, and relive those cherished memories or create new ones that will last a lifetime. Shakey’s Pizza – Truly an American classic.