The Polar Bar [1] was a popular Tucson carhop hot spot of the early 1950s, located on the north side of Speedway Blvd. between Country Club and Alvernon. On weekend nights, the parking lot was filled with hungry cruisers and gazers.

The Polar Bar served the Zombie– the “World’s Largest Sundae.” For $1.00, a patron would get approximately one quart of ice cream, five kinds of fresh fruit, crushed nuts and “anything else that’s handy.” The Sissy Zombie was “twice as little for half as much.” The Wildcat Deluxe Sundae, topped with strawberries, marshmallows and nuts, was only 30 cents. Take home a quart of hand packed ice cream for only 70 cents.

The Zombie Burger, for 40 cents, had all the trimmings. For five cents more, add grilled ham.

The inside of the menu is hand stamped: “All price are our O.P.S. ceiling prices or lower. A list showing our ceiling price for each item is available for your inspection.”

Derald Fulton [2] and Paul E. Shaar owned the Tucson, Arizona Polar Bar. Don Morris was the manager. Fulton moved to Phoenix in 1948 where he started the first Polar Bar. The second location came to Tucson a few years later.

Fulton opened the Tucson’s first fast food restaurant, Lucky Wishbone at 4872 South Sixth Avenue, in July 1953. Hundreds of hungry Tucsonans waited to get a taste of its trademark fried chicken. Three Tucson employees, Morris, Clyde Buzzard and John Kinder, became managing partners. There are now seven locations in Tucson and the Wishbone still endures as a living Tucson tradition.

The Polar Bar’s signature Golden Brown Chicken (see menu above) served with fries, garlic buttered roll and a choice of soup or mixed salad bowl became the main menu (less soup or salad) for the new Lucky Wishbone. The chicken is still sold under the Junior, Mom and Pop names, but the price has gone up a bit.


“In Paris It’s the Riza Bar –

In New York It’s the Astor Bar

In Phoenix and Tucson, It’s the Polar Bar. [3]

[1] The Polar Bar was located at 3440 East Speedway Blvd

[2] Derald Fulton passed away in October 2011. Source:

[3] Quote from the Polar Bar menu, circa 1952-1953.

2014 © Entertainment Magazine and BZB Publishing, Inc., Robert Zucker and Newsreal, Jonathan L. All rights are reserved. These are the compiled works of contributed materials from writers and photographers previously published in the Tucson Teen, Magazine, Entertainment Magazine and Newsreal newspapers, and from Entertainment Magazine On Line ( No part of the material protected by this copyright may be reproduced or utilized in any means, electronic or mechanical, without written permission from the publisher.

Permission is granted to use quotes and cite references to the contents in this book with proper credit noted: “Entertaining Tucson Across the Decades,” © 2014 Entertainment Magazine.”

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Entertaining Tucson Across the Decades
Volume 1

by Robert E. Zucker

The local entertainment scene in Tucson, Arizona during the 1950s through 1985 was vibrant– from the ‘50s rock and roll of the Dearly Beloved to the ‘80s with the Pills, Giant Sandworms and everything in between– classic rock, disco, alternative, punk, hard core, country, swing and Big Band. Hundreds of bands and thousands of entertainers over three decades. Within these pages are the memories and the experiences of those people and places.

These are the original articles and interviews published in several local newspapers that covered the Tucson entertainment scene over the decades. Follow their stories through the years– the big breaks, record releases, hot performances and duds, break ups, tragedies, personal insights and struggles.

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