In the year like no other, it's time for a bit of Back to the Future, or if you're old enough to remember the movie, American Graffiti, or the TV show similar, Happy Days. Restaurant chain Steak 'n Shake is bringing back car hops.

Root Beer Stand, Kalamazoo
A car hop serves a customer, even in winter, at The Root Beer Stand in Kalamazoo. (Photo: TSM, via iPhone)

Now, for Kalamazoo residents, car hops shouldn't be anything new, as The Root Beer Stand has car service, almost exclusively. And back in the day, Schwarz's locations in Kalamazoo had car hops. In fact, at one time, having car hops was pretty common as America's love affair with the car, in the 1950's was in full bloom.

Now in the age of Covid, Steak 'n Shake is bringing it back at select locations, though there's no word on when and if it will happen at locations here. But with the current restriction on the amount of people allowed inside restaurants and the need to socially distance in general, this is a good way keep customers coming in. On the Steak 'n Shake website it says you can enjoy all your favorites while and comfortably safe in your car. And with a modern sensibility, you order your food on an app, then the car hop will bring it out and attach the tray to your car window.

“Our modern version of the Drive-In not only reinforces those early days with delivery right to your car – but it also fits perfectly into today’s reality, offering our guests a way to enjoy dining out of the house while still protecting their family’s health," - Steak n' Shake Senior Vice President Steve May said in a news release.via the Indy Star.

The chain, which started in Normal, Illinois in 1934, used car hops into the 1980's.

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