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Tucson's Neon Culture, Part Eight

From the Tucson's Neon Culture – updated with Part 9 series
  • 1 min to read

The Lucky Wishbone, 4701 E. Broadway Road, with its flashing center light. The local chain is Tucson's first home-grown fast-food restaurant. The first location opened at 6th Ave. and Irvington Road in 1953.

Arizona Daily Star photographer Kelly Presnell revisited neon signs that dot the landscape in Tucson. Many are a throwback to a time when a handful of longtime restaurants, hotels and bars served a smaller city. Some of the signs are barely hanging on today. Some have been lovingly restored to their former glory. Regardless, there's no way to duplicate the feel of neon when the sun goes down.

The former KY Market, now Brink Creative Digital, 1100 S. 6th Ave. Brink owners Danny Vinik and Mary Ann Brazil purchased the abandoned building for $125,000 and created a large space for their small staff, which had outgrown their downtown office. They kept the KY neon sign, changed the "beer and wine" portion to "brink.com" and extended the long string to "Brink Supermarketing." The KY stands for original owner Kwok Yan Low.

With the neon out, the Arizona Motel sign, 1746 S. 6th Ave., is lit with exterior lamps. It started out as the Arizona Tourist Court, "Tucson's COOLEST tourist court."

The distinctive neon sign, reflected in the roof of a car, over the entrance to Kingfisher Bar and Grill, 2564 E Grant Rd. Tim Ivankovich, James Murphy and Jeff Azersky founded the restaurant in 1993. It's been a Tucson staple of quality seafood entrees and smooth cocktails.

The sign for Plaza Centro Garage, 345 E. Congress, one of the new additions to neon signage, constructed in 2013.

The neon beer mug at the Cross Roads Restaurant, which used to feature a drive-in, 2602 S. 4th Ave.

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