When Mary Ann Andrejicka worked at Burger King in the 1960s, a Whooper cost 69 cents.
“$1.10 an hour was our starting pay. The females had to wear the uniform dresses,” Andrejicka recalled.
Windsor is home to Canada’s first Burger King. The historic location at 2850 Tecumseh Road East first opened its doors in September 1969.
“They didn’t really promote that this is the first Burger King in Canada. So we were really naive to that fact,” said Andrejicka.
She recalls managers of the original location running a tight ship.
“It had been spotless,” she said. “They would get down on their hands and knees with a knife and scrape the tile floor.”
Back in the day, employees worked without the help of high-tech machinery.
“You would punch in the order and then most of the time you are calculating the whole bill by adding it up yourself. The most dangerous piece of equipment in that building was the tomato slicer,” said Andrejicka.
Located next to the Windsor Assembly Plant, Andrejicka explains lunch time was hectic.
“Chrysler guys would come running across the street,” she recalled. “The line would be unbelievable. It would be around the block.”
On Friday, Dec 2, the first Burger King restaurant in Canada reopened its doors with a new look.
Renovations include an outdoor digital menu board in the drive-thru, and a modern new exterior and interior.
This original Burger King is one of 30 locations being redesigned by Redberry across the country in 2022 and 2023.
With the historic location turning a new chapter, Andrejicka hopes the next generation of Burger King employees will make the most out of their experience.
“Appreciate the opportunity to work there. Because it can teach you a lot,” she said. “It can teach you working with other people. It can teach you respect.”