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Bob's Big Boy switches to solar power

September 25, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
One of southern California's best-known family diners has developed an appetite for saving energy. The original "Bob's Big Boy" is celebrating its birthday by going "green" with a solar panel system. Here's more on "Solar and 60 Night" at Bob's.Bob's Big Boy is a place that's known for celebrating yesteryear, with the classic architecture of the 1950s, the classic cars that congregate and classic American cuisine.

But one Bob's Big Boy restaurant is stepping bolding into the future.

Southern California's famous sunshine is now helping to power one of Californa's most famous subcultures by way of the solar panels that line the top of the restaurant's famous carport.

"We're trying to help the environment and do our part, at least," said Leo Mattias, assistant manager, Bob's Big Boy.

The Bob's Big Boy in Burbank is a place where lovers of classic cars congregate every Friday night.

And while little has changed there over the past 60 years, these solar panels represent a major shift for this nostalgic burger joint.

"We're trying to stay on top of our game," said Mattias.

Mattias says the panels are providing 20 percent of the restaurant's electricity.

"We have a lot of regulars especially, and they're shocked, just like we are," said Mattias. "They're just like, 'Wow, I can't believe Bob's. This is an old restaurant, and now you guys are ahead of most restaurants, doing the solar.'"

"I think 50 years from now there's going to be electric hot rods sitting under that thing," said comedian Chris Titus.

Titus enjoys bringing his classic car to Bob's carport. He welcomes the restaurant's shift to green technology.

"They're actually saving the planet for them, and cooking the same french fries? I'm in," said Titus.

Others are holding out hope that the solar panels will translate into lower prices on Bob's famous double-decker.

"It's a money-saver for them, I guess maybe somehow, some way, it gets passed along to us on Friday night," said customer Bill Smith.

Along with the solar panels, they've also switched to fluorescent lighting throughout the restaurant.


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