That pizza joint on the hill

Oh, my 40-year-old brain! I have been sitting in the same chair all day trying to remember the name of the pizza place that was up on the hill, I think, across from Shakey’s. It had a weird pizza joint / olde tyme candy shoppe / barbershop quartet theme. The logo was a guy with a handlebar mustache wearing a striped red shirt. My brother remembers enormous jaw breakers. Extra credit to anyone who can name the owners. They went to Holy Rosary.

Please help. I may never sleep again.



about 11 years ago

It seems like you are describing Shakeys Pizza- guy with red/white striped shirt, handlebar moustache...


about 11 years ago

Happy Joe's. Sleep well.


about 11 years ago

I think Happy Joe's was where China Star is, or was it that place that was a lodge, but I think it's a sports bar now. What was the other if one of them was Happy Joe's?


about 11 years ago

It was Shakey's Pizza which is now the BPO Elks club.  I do believe the owners were the Rohlfing family.


about 11 years ago

Happy Joe's! Yes, Where China Star is and across from the Elk's Club. Giant jawbreakers are the only candy I remember too. The pizza sauce was not the best, but I was too young to care as I was there for the root beer and candy!

Chester Park

about 11 years ago

I had a few birthday parties there as a kid. The staff would sound a siren and flash strobe lights on the ceiling before singing Happy Birthday. The chain still exists; I think the nearest location is in Fargo.

Chester Park

about 11 years ago

Also, the owner/founder was Lawrence Joseph "Happy Joe" Whitty.


about 11 years ago

Happy Joe's is fairly obviously a clone of Shakey's, and if memory serves, Happy Joe himself was once associated with Shakey's.

Shakey's and Happy Joe's have both had their ups and downs.  Shakey's at one point had over 400 locations coast to coast but is now a basically California chain with only a half dozen stores outside California. At their 1980s peak, they had nine stores in Minneapolis/St. Paul.

Happy Joe's is based in Iowa and once had many stores in Minnesota and Wisconsin but now only two in Minnesota, in Crookston and New Ulm.

Neither Shakey's nor Happy Joe's got into the trend of pizza being a delivery business.  They were still building traditional dine-in pizzerias at a time when Pizza Hut was scaling them back and replacing them with carry-out/delivery only locations.

Steve Walsh

about 5 months ago

Shakey’s in Duluth, Brainerd and Sioux Falls was owned by Harry Kase. After he sold Duluth I think it changed to Chicago Pizza.

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