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The retro Tail o' the Pup hot dog stand has found a new home in a local museum

Written by
Brittany Martin

The original Tail o' the Pup hot dog stand—shaped like a giant hot dog on a bun, of course—may have closed down, but it won’t be forgotten. This week, the structure of the stand itself moves into a new home where it will go on display for the public to admire at the Valley Relics Museum.

"After years of preservation and storage of the iconic Los Angeles Landmark Tail o' the Pup, we have found it the perfect home," Nicole Miller, a member of the family that has owned the stand since the 1970s, told the Mercury News. "We were in the process of trying to find a new location to reopen it, but couldn’t get an operating permit."

Currently, the stand, which, at 18-feet long, is about the size of a large food truck, is parked in a storage facility in Lake Elsinore. It will be transported to the Chatsworth museum on Thursday, where a public welcome ceremony will take place at 3pm. Once it moves into the museum, the staff will take on what may be a long-term project of restoring the retro icon.   

Tail o' the Pup opened back in 1946 at the corner of La Cienega and Beverly Boulevard. It was a popular spot for motorists and served up some of the city’s most popular hot dogs until it closed in 1985 for construction of what is now the Sofitel Los Angeles Hotel. The stand then reopened at a new location on San Vicente where it operated until 2005. When that new location was bought by a developer to build condos, the Tail o’ the Pup shut down and went into storage, with occasional outings.    

The Valley Relics Museum displays a collection of pop culture artifacts relating to the San Fernando Valley and greater Los Angeles, specializing in large-scale neon, signage and architectural elements which might otherwise be lost to time.  

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