Thursday, October 25, 2007

Irvine in the 1970's

An anonymous (or somewhat anonymous) person submits memories of living in Irvine during the 1970's...


I love your website, it made me think of things I hadn't thought about in some time. I'll have to dig through some of the family pictures for old shots of The OC, like Old MacDonald's Farm where the Kaliedoscope Shopping Center is now located in Mission Viejo.

I still remember the first time I visited my In-Laws after they moved to Irvine (we moved down the next year). My father-in-law said we were going to go down and pick up Kentucky Fried Chicken for dinner and he and I piled in the car.

We drove down from Turtle Rock, took Culver Drive back to University Drive and pulled in to the parking lot where Alpha Beta was (remember Alpha Beta's). We parked where years later a Carl's Jr was placed.

We sat there and I asked my father-in-law where the Kentucky Fried Chicken was and he said just wait a minute. I figured he didn't feel well and we'd drive on in a little while.

While we were sitting there a delivery van pulled up with Kentucky Fried Chicken written on the side and the guy stopped and opened up a window and started selling chicken right out of the van.

That's my first memory of Irvine in 1971. That spot later became the busiest Carl's Junior in the entire chain, after McDonald's turned down the location because the Irvine Company wanted too much money for the location. I bet McDonalds kicked themselves a few times for that mistake.

At that time there was Chevron Gas station on the corner there and that was the only gas station in Irvine as well as Alpha Beta being the only market. I think there was a liquor store and that was about it.

Culver and University. If you want to see how things change check what's in University Park Center now with the link below:


  1. Re: Irvine in the 70s: My parents moved to Turtle Rock in 1971 & I've heard many times about that Chevron station near the Alpha Beta at Culver & Michelson. People called that Chevron "Crooked George's" because the owner, George, would ream the customers since he was the only gas station in that area. That shopping center had a MacNulty's ice cream parlor that I loved as a kid.

  2. Yeah! McNulty's! When I was at University Park school in 1st Grade, we would get free ice cream tickets in class and then walk to McNultys! I would always get the Rainbow Sherbet!

  3. Does anyone have any pictures of Irvine in the 1970-1990's?


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