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HARRY AND ESTHER SNYDER
Harry and Esther Snyder introduced California’s first drive-thru hamburger stand in a space barely 100 square feet at Francisquito and Garvey in Baldwin Park, California. A simple menu was created offering hamburgers, cheeseburgers, fries, drinks and coffee. Harry believed the most important part of the equation was high-quality food, so he visited a nearby butcher and a grocery store every day to supply his stand with fresh meat and fresh produce to serve to his Customers. He and his wife, Esther, hand patted the meat patties that would be assembled into a freshly cooked burger, and served alongside freshly cut fries and a soda or coffee.
From the beginning, the couple’s partnership established a strong foundation, as Esther diligently managed the bookkeeping for the new restaurant while Harry ran the stand.
On October 22, 1948, the humble drive-thru restaurant, then named In-N-Out Hamburger, No Delay, opened its doors to Customers at 4:15 p.m. Selling hamburgers for $.25, cheeseburgers for $.30 and soda pop for $.10, the newly opened stand served 57 burgers on the first night. By the end of the month, they had sold 2,000 burgers.
Double-Double appears on the menu
Costing only 60 cents, the Double-Double was introduced to Customers in 1963, by Bob Lang Sr. when it was displayed on a hanging banner outside of the burger stand. In 1966, the popular item officially became part of the restaurant’s menu.
Harry was always looking for better ways to serve his Customers. His innovative vision of enabling them to order their meals in their car came to its fruition in 1948, when he introduced the Two-Way Speaker. Made with military style speaker cones mounted on poles in the drive lanes, this special introduction allowed In-N-Out to become the first drive-thru in California with a two-way speaker. As Customers entered the drive-thru lane, they viewed a sign that read “2-Way Speaker. For Your Convenience, Driver May Order Without Leaving Car.” Associates then greeted them by their car type as they spoke directly into the speaker to communicate their order with the cook. The importance of quality customer service that Harry instilled via this personable experience then, continues to thrive at all locations today, allowing In-N-Out to offer true drive-thru service worthy of its name.
Willy’s Coupe in Drive-thru at store #1
In-N-Out’s connection with the car culture began back in the 1960s when Harry became part owner of the Irwindale Speedway and then set up a couple snack bars that served burgers for attendees. At the time, the Snyder sons, Guy and Rich, were teens who were very much involved with the tie-in as they helped clean the snack bars and picked up trash around the lot. This caused them to become heavily connected to the unique culture of cars and burgers, which then led them to race cars as they got older. As Rich became more involved with the business, Guy always remained connected to his love for cars and racing them. The 1941 Willy’s Coupe serves as a homage to Guy Snyder, as it is a vehicle he owned, worked on and raced in. The classic California hot rod can be seen on the back of several of In-N-Out’s collector’s T-shirts.
Store Associate Uniform
Having proudly served the country in a military uniform, Harry believed that dressing professionally was important. To show respect for his Customers, he established an In-N-Out uniform that consisted of all white, except for black shoes and belt. He and his Associates wore the same uniform every day, and in 1974, the traditional colors of In-N-Out became a part of each Associate’s uniform as red aprons replaced white.
Since 1948, we’ve always made our hamburger patties ourselves. Every day before dawn, Harry would visit the meat market to not only personally select the front quarter chucks, but also stand and watch as the butchers de-boned and ground the beef. Our meat department continues to uphold the same high standards to this very day, by personally selecting only the highest quality chucks in order to make our ground beef patties. We still hire and train our own butchers, who take great pride in helping us serve the burgers our Customers love.
Since the founding of In-N-Out Burger, Harry strived to provide his Customers with quality meals that were prepared in a sparkling clean environment. Having built our first burger stand with oversized floor-to-ceiling windows, Harry and Esther reinforced transparency for their Customers so they knew where and how their meal was being prepared. Today, an in-house team of Sanitation Associates is responsible for using thorough cleaning procedures to ensure all restaurant locations meet the cleanliness guidelines that Harry instilled from the beginning.
First lapmats printed
Harry first takes the brown wax paper used to package his bakery buns and creates hand-cut lap mats for Customers who choose to eat in their cars. He then switches to pink butcher paper, and in 1970, Harry is inspired to replace butcher paper with printed mats that offer helpful information to Customers. Early lap mats featuring local maps with In-N-Out locations would often wind up in glove boxes to help drivers find their way around town.
As a unique sales technique, Harry begins serving malts at Store #5 in Pasadena, when it opens in 1952. Then later in 1975, real ice cream shakes, in three flavors – chocolate, strawberry and vanilla – officially join the menu at all In-N-Out locations. Today, the sweet treat, served in the iconic green and white palm tree-lined cups, is still made from real ice cream and available in the same three original flavors.
A cartoon fryman designed by Harry becomes the first T-shirt design in a continuing series of popular T-shirts that later becomes a tradition of releasing a new T-shirt annually, or when In-N-Out opens in a new market. Since then, 45 T-shirts have been released. In-N-Out Customers can purchase shirts at all our locations, including company stores in Baldwin Park and Las Vegas, and through our merchandise website at shop.in-n-out.com.
Company store founded
The In-N-Out Company Store officially opens at In-N-Out’s original Baldwin Park location, providing a signature line of products that began with the first In-N-Out T-shirt in 1975. The introduction of the annual T-shirt design begins around 1984. The In-N-Out Company Store now has three locations in addition to the online store: the original in Baldwin Park, California, and two in Las Vegas, Nevada. Today, In-N-Out Customers can purchase everything from shoes and socks to beach towels and blankets.
In-N-Out Funny Car
In-N-Out’s involvement in drag racing is very apparent from the beginning as we sponsored an Over the Hill Gang Funny Car from 1986 to 1997 with drivers including Dale Pulde, Tim Grose, Mark Oswald, and Tripp Shumake. In addition to national event wins, an In-N-Out Funny Car sets the mark as the world’s quickest and fastest funny car in the quarter mile at 5.067 seconds at 294.21 mph in February of 1993. An In-N-Out Funny Car returns to the racetrack in 2010 and is driven by Melanie Troxel.
One of Harry’s favorite movies, “It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World,” features characters racing to find treasure buried under four palm trees planted to resemble the letter W. Because each In-N-Out store was Harry’s treasure, in 1972 he started a tradition of planting crossed palm trees in front of most In-N-Out locations. Today, in his honor, we continue to plant a set of crossed palms at all new locations.
1952 – 1993
As part of Rich Snyder’s commitment to make every Customer’s visit to In-N-Out a great one, a new direct toll-free customer service line becomes available every day to ensure the quality of the In-N-Out experience. Rich’s dedication toward training In-N-Out managers to provide Customers with the highest quality service helped drive the establishment of In-N-Out University. Under his guidance, In-N-Out grows to 93 locations. He and his mother, Esther Snyder, establish the Child Abuse Fund, which later grows to become the In-N-Out Burger Foundation. Rich Snyder tragically passed away on December 15, 1993.
1951 – 1999
During his tenure as Chief Executive Officer, Guy Snyder adds new In-N-Out locations that grow to a family of 140 restaurants. Guy is remembered for his commitment to quality and taste, as well as his passion for drag racing as a car owner and driver. Most of all, his legacy includes his relentless concentration on improving processes and equipment throughout the company to achieve ever-higher levels of quality and service for In-N-Out Customers. He tragically passed away on December 4, 1999.
Situated on the site where the Snyders’ home stood in 1948, In-N-Out University gets its own building in 1984 after operating just around the corner from Store #1. Rich Snyder launches the new facility, ensuring that entry-level managers from all In-N-Out restaurants receive the training that lets guests look forward to the highest quality food, cleanliness and customer service.
First cookout event
A grill loaded onto a pickup truck and accompanied by two of In-N-Out’s earliest Associates launches the Cookout Department in 1974. Today, nearly 20 fully self-supported cookout trucks and 125 Associates serve venues and events, ranging from schools, churches and charities to weddings, birthdays and concerts. Every burger is made fresh-to-order and served by a team of friendly Associates in Los Angeles and Orange County, as well as limited parts of Ventura, San Bernardino and Riverside Counties. Additional service is offered in limited parts of the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex, Denver, Colorado Springs and Las Vegas.
Annual t-shirts started by Guy
Guy Snyder begins the introduction of annual T-shirt designs inspired by his love of cars and racing. Around 1984, announcing a new design from a top artist becomes an annual tradition. Today, Customers can purchase shirts at all In-N-Out locations, including company stores in Baldwin Park and Las Vegas, and through our merchandise website at shop.in-n-out.com
In-N-Out Associates work diligently to ensure that the freshest and highest quality ingredients are delivered throughout the week to all of the company’s locations.
Each department in the In-N-Out Family plays a key role in fulfilling our commitment to providing the highest quality, service and cleanliness support to our stores and Customers.
In-N-Out Burger Foundation established
Driven by Esther Snyder’s belief that every child deserves a chance and a future, the In-N-Out Burger Foundation is established in 1984 by her and her son, Rich. The foundation’s year-round fundraising efforts provide residential treatment, emergency shelter, foster care and early intervention for children in need. With In-N-Out consistently paying 100% of the foundation’s administrative costs, all funds raised go directly to centers providing help to neglected and abused children
First Nevada location opens
In November of 1992, In-N-Out opens a restaurant at 2900 W. Sahara Blvd. in Las Vegas, Nevada. The company’s 80th location becomes the first outside of California to serve the quality and freshness of an In-N-Out burger.
On November 10, 1994, the 100th In-N-Out restaurant begins serving to Customers at 641 Leavesley Rd. in Gilroy, California.
As with all In-N-Out locations, fresh ingredients are delivered throughout the week and supplied to the store from In-N-Out.
50th Anniversary & Woody
In October of 1998, In-N-Out reaches the half-century mark with 134 restaurants and 5,498 Associates. A commemorative T-shirt bears an image, by artist Mark Davidson, of a classic 1950’s-era Woodie station wagon in front of an In-N-Out drive-thru. After 50 years, the company remains a family business, maintaining the dedication to quality and customer service that the Snyder’s established with their very first store.
Customer service line opened
As part of Rich Snyder’s commitment to make every guest’s visit to In-N-Out a great one, a new direct toll-free line becomes available every day from the time the first door opens until the last door closes. Still staffed by Associates with first-hand experience working in our stores, they are fully empowered to take care of customers. The customer service line makes ensuring the quality of the In-N-Out experience as easy as a call to 1-800-786-1000.
Throughout its history, In-N-Out has been blessed with dedicated Associates who take great pride in providing Customers the highest quality food, cleanliness and customer service.
Managed by Mark Taylor, the 64th In-N-Out location opens in West Covina, California in 1990, and becomes the R&D launching ground for new equipment and customer service innovations. Mark started his In-N-Out career as an hourly Associate, worked his way up to store manager and then earned the opportunity to open this important location that becomes one of the busiest locations in the company. Mark Taylor will later become Division Manager, General Manager, Vice President of Operations, and President and Chief Operating Officer of In-N-Out Burger.
On May 3, 2000, store #143 opens in Lake Havasu City at 81-101 London Bridge Road. In-N-Out now serves guests at locations in California, Nevada and Arizona.
In 2008, Washington City becomes the first community in Utah to become home to an In-N-Out. The company’s 215th location at 822 W. Telegraph Street begins serving Southern Utah on April 22.
In 2005, the grand opening of a second In-N-Out location in Temecula, California marks the 200th restaurant in the family. Welcoming guests on December 30, the store adds to a presence that extends from California to Nevada and Arizona. In keeping with the local spirit of each In-N-Out location, four of the first customers to try the drive-thru arrive on horseback.
Lynsi Snyder is a visionary and servant leader committed to maintaining and enhancing the well-being of the entire In-N-Out Burger family, which now numbers over 36,000 associates. She directs and helps to oversee all of In-N-Out Burger’s philanthropic efforts through the In-N-Out Burger Foundation, which was started by her Grandma Esther, Uncle Rich and Mother Lynda, and the Slave 2 Nothing Foundation, which was started by Lynsi and her husband, Sean Ellingson. Lynsi and Sean are also the founders and visionaries for Army of Love, a nonprofit organization that exists for the purpose of uniting the body of Christ through training tools that will set them free to set others free.
Hot cocoa added
Bringing back a favorite from its early history, In-N-Out once again adds Hot Cocoa to the menu in 2018. First offered in the 1950s, the newly introduced version is made with quality cocoa from Ghirardelli and served with marshmallows. Kids under 12 can enjoy it for free on rainy days. This is the first menu addition since Lemonade was added 15 years earlier.
Texans get two good reasons to celebrate on May 11, 2011, as the state’s first two In-N-Out restaurants open on the same day in Allen and Frisco. A brand new warehouse and patty-making facility also opens in Dallas, ensuring that these new restaurants, and others that will follow, can guarantee the same quality and freshness as stores closer to our original Baldwin Park facilities.
On January 7th, In-N-Out celebrates the addition of its 300th restaurant and its second location in Anaheim, California. Our family of restaurants serves quality burgers, fries, and shakes across five states: California, Nevada, Arizona, Utah, and Texas.
On September 9, 2015, In-N-Out Burger reaches its sixth state and celebrates the opening of the restaurant in Medford, Oregon. In-N-Out now serves quality burgers, fries, and shakes in: California, Nevada, Arizona, Utah, Texas and Oregon.
Coloradoans get double the reason to celebrate on November 20, 2020 as the state’s first two In-N-Out restaurants open on the same day in Colorado Springs and Aurora. Because of a rigorous commitment to quality and freshness, a brand new warehouse and patty-making facility also are underway in Colorado Springs. This ensures that these new restaurants, and others that will follow, can guarantee the freshest, highest quality foods.
Slave 2 Nothing foundation established
The Slave 2 Nothing Foundation was established in 2016 by Lynsi Snyder and her husband, Sean Ellingson, to help improve the lives of individuals and families affected by substance abuse and/or human trafficking. The Foundation helps bring hope to people for a better life, and that is one of the best ways to help our communities become stronger, safer, and better places to live.
With the In-N-Out Burger Family consisting of over 36,000 Associates at nearly 400 locations, each restaurant remains dedicated to the same classic menu of burgers, fries and fountain drinks first introduced by Harry and Esther Snyder – freshly prepared to each guest’s liking and never relying on microwaves or freezers. In-N-Out has locations throughout California, Nevada, Arizona, Utah, Texas, Oregon and Colorado.