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Sambo,s on 205th and aurora was across the street from Aurora village. It is now a pawn shop. My happiest memories are there. I met my boyfriend at that same Sambo's and also worked there. I can still see his blond hair blue eyes sitting at the counter. Too bad we didn't stay together. I miss him terribly and think of him often.


I worked for Sambos from 1974 until 1981 .It was a great job, coworkers were fun. And we all
Loved working there.


Summer of 1972, I was 12 yo and the family went to Disney World. We stayed in the Executive Suites on Orange Blossom Trail in Orlando. The Sambo's was right next door. I remember good food and good service, and I can also remember how fascinated I was with the story of Sambo. Years later in the late 80s I ended up working at the same hotel as a desk clerk, and I wished the Sambo's was still there. I wanted some more of those "best I ever had" pancakes.


I still Have the wooden nickels for a cup of coffee at Sambo that I got in Santa Barbara.


Brian Zemann (Mr Z). Brian, i remember using you a a lot as both a host and also calling you at home to come in to work to cover for people that called off. You were kind of my go-to guy. You were a good worker and I remember depending on you quite a bit to fill in for the absentees. Anyway, you asked about Big Daddy. I haven't seen him in a number of years. Last I heard, he was working at Denny's Restaurant in Emeryville, Ca. As I mentioned earlier, I spent over 20 years in the military after Sambos and then went to work for Motorola and Geeneral Dynamics. I retired from GD last December. I was married, divorced, got three kids and two grandkids. How about you.. Write Back...dave


Brian: I am the Dave with the orange Mustang. After I left Sambos, I joined the military and made a career for myself. I retired from the military and 1995 and went to work for Motorola; General Dynamics bought out the site where I was working and I then transferred employment to General Dynamics. So, what have you been up to. I remember I always referred to you as "Z". You were a young kid then, probably still in high school as I remember, Write Back...dave

Brian Zemann

Dave that drove the orange mustang. I worked for you, going up through the ranks and was still there a little longer after you left. I have a lot of great memory's of thoughts days. I am almost at a loss for words that 38 years have passed and with a little typing on Google there you are. It would be great to know what you have done since. What happened to big daddy? Anyway Dave I will watch this site for a little while to see if you still active here. Oh as a little tease you called me "Z"

joe gigliotti

I was with Sambo's mgr. team then became a recruter I am Joe Gigliotti, is anyone out there that I may still know.


Wait.... Did you work at Centerville or Walnut?


OMG, I worked at that same Garland Sambo's at the same time. I still have the old Dish Machine Operator's Manual.

Ever work under Al R. as the manager? I had two precious weeks before he left. Good man.

Roxanne Davies

I worked for Sambos in Garland,Texas in the late 70's early 80's. Miss all the great people I worked with..Good times


@Ron- You worked with Dave & Paul Fox at the Edmonds Sambo's, then? They were my roomies.


@Dave- 7 or 8 years ago, I rolled into a restaurant in Longview and sat at the counter. I looked around, and suddenly was back in 1970. The waitress took my order, and I said, "Wow, this is obviously an old Sambo's", and she replied that I was right, and that she'd started working there in high school in the 70's and was still there. There's a restaurant(Jerry's)in Lakeview, Oregon that's even more Sambo's-retro, but they say that the decor was "borrowed" from Sambo's(along with the shape of the external sign)

Mike Turner

I worked for Sambo's as a owner/manager from 1974 to 1977 from Forest Park, Atlanta Ga then tranferrd to Gandy Blvd, Tampa in 1976. Lots of good times and people!

Howard Holub

A lot of great stories here. Would like to hear more. Check out the growing site of www.SambosOnline.com Hope to hear from you all.


Back in 1969, my family took our first trip to Disneyland. I still remember going to Sambos for breakfast every morning. The silver dollar pancakes and the different syrups to choose from.I don't remember everything about that trip, but I fondly remember the family breakfasts at Sambos.

Lee in North Carolina

Sambo's was a first-class operation until they abruptly changed their manager/partner incentive plan. I worked as a teenager at the Durham, NC restaurant on North Duke street from 1976 to 1978. Rob and Dawn Riddle were the original manager/partners. Great people, great restaurant, and Rob was a great mentor, particularly for us young people in our first jobs. When the incentive plan changed, the good managers left and the restaurants went downhill. They went from being something special to nothing better than the typical Shoney's or Denny's.

I started as a DMO (Dish Machine Operator), then cooked, hosted, and did prep cook - mostly cook. Being a teenager (single), I got to work each Christmas, New Years, Thanksgiving and Mothers Day. I recall with some awe that I and my co-worker friends could party all night New Year's eve, then go in at 6:00 a.m on New Years day for an 8-hour shift! Only when you're young, I guess.

I still have my Sambo's name tag, orange chef's scarf and a novelty Sambo's tiger.

Idrees Razaa

Please can someone tell me if there ever was a Sambo's restaurant in the city Kenosha wisconsin on 52nd street?

David  Fitzgerald

I worked for the 34th street Sambo's in St. Petersburg, FL from 1974-'76. In college, I worked for Sambo's in Greenville, SC from 1978-'81. I moved to Richmond, VA to manage a store on Hull Street until I received "the" call in the middle of the night that the store was being boarded-up. The wonderful Sambo's legacy was dying. I felt so defeated.

Today, I am an educator working on a doctoral degree living back in St. Petersburg where I was born and raised. I still think about those days with Sambo's and the great employees I came to know and respect. I have often wondered what happened to John T. Jenkins? He was the manager of Sambo's in St. Pete during the '70's. He really influenced my life at the time. It would be great to contact him after over 35 years. You never forget! I have Sambo's pins, etc. from that time. I will never get rid of tem.

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