AV Diners

While indoor and outdoor dining has been temporarily suspended due to COVID-19, most restaurants are still offering take-out and delivery. Please consider supporting local businesses while having a look back on some of the Antelope Valley’s most popular diners and drive-ins!

In 1929, Guy and Wava May Moore opened a restaurant, next to the Rendezvous Bar, on Antelope Avenue (present-day Sierra Highway) called The Squeeze Inn.


Patrons ate their ten-cent hamburgers on the only three stools that fit inside the tiny five-by-seven foot eating area. Once labeled “the world’s smallest cafe” by Ripley’s Believe It or Not, Guy would often sell and serve food to people waiting outside as even the door was too narrow to accommodate a large number of customers.


The Inn prospered and eventually grew to a ten-stool establishment with five employees. In 2017, Michael’s Beauty Salon and Barbershop along with TVZ4Less stand in the approximate spot of the Inn.

Charles and Ethel Wakefield, who arrived in Lancaster in 1919, opened their brick Jazz Cafe (and later a candy shop) adjacent to Leo Harris’ General Merchandise, on the west side of Sierra Highway. The shop sold an assortment of food along with candies, ice creams, and sodas. In a 1920's issue of the Antelope Valley Ledger Gazette, Charles was described as "the Onlyest Candy Maker in this neck of the woods."

Charles and Ethel Wakefield, who arrived in Lancaster in 1919, opened their brick Jazz Cafe (and later a candy shop) adjacent to Leo Harris’ General Merchandise, on the west side of Sierra Highway. The shop sold an assortment of food along with candies, ice creams, and sodas. In a 1920's issue of the Antelope Valley Ledger Gazette, Charles was described as "the Onlyest Candy Maker in this neck of the woods."


The Jazz Cafe and Candy Shop was the town’s main meeting spot for adults and teens, including frequent customer Francis Gumm (Judy Garland). Unfortunately, business came to an end in 1935, when a fire destroyed this section of the

Lancaster business district.

While young Judy Garland was frequenting the Jazz Candy Shop, Frank Zappa’s preferred spot was old Denny’s (now The Village Grill) where he would meet up with friend Van Vliet, better known as Captain Beefheart, where the two would have a late-night coffee.


Listed on the State Historic Register, this restaurant was one of the earliest Denny’s in California. It was built on Sierra Highway as number thirty in a then-Southland-only chain in 1960. In the 1970s, when a new Denny’s was launched on Avenue I, the restaurant became known as Super Steak and what is presently the Village Grill.

Lastly, one of the Valley’s most popular early hamburger joints was Ted’s Hamburger Drive-In. Ted’s opened in 1955 and charged nineteen cents per burger.

Originally located on the southeast corner of Lancaster Boulevard and Tenth Street West, the drive-in went through many name changes including Kay’s, Jolly Jax, Walz Hr No. 1, Syd’s, and finally the White House when it moved to Division Street.

Today, an Arco AM-PM stands in its original location.


Photos courtesy of MOAH’s Permanent Collection and Google Maps


Mailing Address: 44933 Fern Ave.,

Lancaster, CA 93534

665 W. Lancaster BLVD,

Lancaster, CA 93534

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