Joined: Aug 19, 2007
From: Pewaukee WI.
|Posted: 2011-09-01 2:48 pm  Permalink|
I kind of feel obligated share whatever I can find. I live near Brookfield, Wisconsin, plus Judge's was my introduction into Polynesian Pop back in the late 50's-early 60's, and even I have a hard time finding information on these places. I had taken them for granted until I realized that they just vanished, almost without a trace.
I was around 12 or 13 when I first went there, but the memories are still just as fleeting. My best friends mother was a waitress at Judge's at the time, and if memory serves me, the standard uniform was a flowery Hawaiian blouse tied at the waist, black or white Capri pants, and a large flower hair clip. What I remember about the restaurant itself was that the entrance was flanked with a couple of palm trees that I always thought were fake, but after hearing the Leilani planned on using real ones, was never really quite sure of. Entering from the hot late summer, early evening I was was hit with a wall of darkness, a wave of Hawaiian music, the scent of exotic food, and the epiphany that the gentle breeze of a tropical paradise was some very much appreciated air-conditioning.
I think I remember some sort of grotto by the waitress station just inside....lava rock, maybe shells or carvings scattered about, not sure about running water. If there was a bar near the entrance, I don't remember seeing it. The dining area was dimly lit....mostly by table lamps/candles plus other indirect lighting. Light enough not to stumble around in, but dark enough to qualify as romantic (by my standards at the time), and not the stark lighting of the postcard on the previous page. I remember there was artwork & other artifacts on the walls, but with the dim lighting, and the sensory overload, not to mention the decades that have passed, I don't really remember much of the details. I do remember the salad bar was a sailboat(seen in the postcard photos), bottomless refills on the "Kiddie Cocktails", and all of us kids were given a tiki charm.....I believe they were all different, but this is was what mine looked like:
I remember it being more Hawaiian/Island themed than tiki.