Marv’s and J&R’s Drive Inn

Marv’s Drive Inn

“My mom and stepfather, Luana & Marvin Goodman left their federal government jobs to open Marv’s Drive-Inn in Florin, California around 1959. They leased the property for the drive-in from Jerry and Vivian Kara. The Kara’s we’re very nice people. The Kara’s lived on Florin Road across from the drive-in. Their daughter Judette (Karr ’67) Rippetoe was a fun friend and classmate of mine. Years prior to the drive-in being built the Kara’s built the housing track that was behind the drive in. Running the drive-in was all consuming. It was open seven days a week with hours of operation 10 am to 9 pm. My parents and two older siblings worked there, and I babysat my little sister. I started working there too when I was 14.  Not knowing how much work it was, kids thought I was so lucky. They used to ask me if I could eat anything I wanted there. The answer is “yes”…..I did eat anything I wanted. That part was great! I can remember our Giant Burger cost 25 cents and it came with fries. The food was great, and my parents kept everything spotlessly clean. Numerous friends and acquaintances were employed there over the years. It was really fun working with all of them.  It was also a lot of fun to get to know people in the community that were regular customers. It was a feast or famine kind of business. It was very difficult not knowing exactly how much the earnings would be each week or month.  My parents were stressed when business was slow. I remember my stepfather counting the money every night at our kitchen table. He was able to collect some valuable coins over the years. My parents sold the drive in around 1966 to open a restaurant with my Aunt Sharon & Uncle Eddie Haas. It was called The Center Restaurant and was located in the Country Club Center on the NW corner of Watt and El Camino Avenues. Originally the spot housed the Old Hearts Restaurant. My siblings and I learned a good work ethic at the drive in, which has been a great advantage to us.”

“I don’t have any other information or photos that I can add. Anyone else who could answer more questions have all passed, my mom in 1986.” – Daughter Gail (Thorensen ’67)-Fisher

The Goodman Family
L. to r. – Judy Thorensen, Gail Thorensen, Luana, Mark Thorensen, Shelly Goodman, Marv

(Luana’s first husband Donald Thorensen died of cancer when their three children Judy, Mark, & Gail were very young. Luana married Marv Goodman in 1954 and they had Shelly, their only child together in 1957.

J & R’s Drive Inn

Judy and Robert Cerrarelli owned J&R’S Drive Inn Burgers on the SE corner of Florin Road and Kara Drive for 43 years. Judy bought J&R’S in 1966, when she was 20 years old and made the best burgers in South Sacramento. Everyone new J&Rs and many car clubs met there for a day or an evening of car talk. Judy would hire anyone who wanted or needed a job and hired just about every person in the neighborhood throughout the years. The drive Inn is now gone.

Sadly, Judy recently passed away on March 5, 2021 at 75 years old. She is survived by husband Robert and her daughters Heidi Gaston and Nicole Hendee and their families.

Information gathered by Louis Silveira (April 2021)