Our Journey from Groceries to Greens...

Let's take a trip down memory lane to see how this meat n' three restaurant became a Spartanburg landmark!


1940's

1947

Wade's Restaurant was founded on March 6, 1947 by Wade and Betty Lindsey when they purchased a small grocery store on South Pine Street in Spartanburg, SC called Mrs. May’s Grocery.

1947

In addition to selling groceries, there was also a small lunch counter where hot dogs, sandwiches and soup were sold to the workers from Draper Corporation and Duke Power. The workers began asking Mrs. Betty if she would expand the grocery's lunch counter menu to offer hot, home-cooked meals. Betty agreed and began serving her family's recipes of southern-style meats and vegetables.

1949

As business grew, Betty and Wade moved from the one room grocery store into a newly constructed cinder block building. Around this time Wade began preparing his delicious Pork Bar-B-Q over hickory wood everyday.


1950's

1950

In the early days there was no choice of what you got on your plate. Betty would prepare plates each day and set them on the counter for customers to pick up. Every plate was the same. The workers would simply come by at lunch and select one of the pre-prepared home-cooked meals -- they knew it would be delicious!

1955

As business continued to grow, the bustling cinder block restaurant on South Pine Street was enlarged to accommodate the growing number of regular Wade’s patrons. 

1959

During the 50's & 60's, Wade’s was a typical drive-in restaurant where in addition to inside seating, customers were also served in their cars by "Curb Hops”.


1970's

1970

On October 12, 1970 Betty Lindsey was taken from us way to soon due to cancer. While she is not physically with us in the kitchen each day, her delicious family recipes are still served at the restaurant in honor of her!

1977

After "Pop" Wade's retirement Wade Jr. (aka "Hamp") and Carole, son and daughter of Wade & Betty Lindsey, took over the operation of Wade's. Immediately, they began to re-focus the direction of the restaurant from a drive-in that sold beer to a more family-oriented meat n' three.

1978

It wasn't long after Hamp and Carole took over that the now familiar Wade's logo was created! The logo was designed to resemble a Wade's Yeast Roll. Before Wade’s was known for its veggies, it was the homemade Yeast Rolls that people talked most about. To this day, Wade’s produces 3,500 of it’s famous Yeast Rolls by hand each day.


1980's

1981

By the early 1980’s Wade’s was becoming known as the place to bring the whole family for a great meal at a reasonable price. In the 80's we also served breakfast!

1982

College Night was the first official Wade's promotion. Every Tuesday Night students from local colleges (especially Converse and Wofford) would descend on Wade’s for a home-cooked meal at a cost of $2 per plate!

1985

A second Wade's location was opened in the Pinewood Shopping Center just 3 miles north on the same street as the original Wade’s. It was an immediate success!

1989

After much consideration, it became evident that the best business decision would be to close the smaller original Wade's location and concentrate on operating the larger Pinewood Shopping Center restaurant location, which was busting at the seams!


1990's

1990

With the new larger location Wade's was growing by leaps and bounds. It was at this time Wade’s began using the slogan "Have You Had Your Veggies Today?".

1995

To advertise around Spartanburg, Wade's put up a comical billboard with the slogan “Bean Me Up Scottie" featuring a cartoonish Star Trek-themed Green Bean. Little did we know that this was the beginning of what would become Wade’s next claim to fame in Spartanburg -- a humorous billboard campaign featuring your favorite Wade's food!

1997

March of this year Wade’s celebrated 50 years in business! Fortunately Wade Lindsey was still with us to celebrate this milestone but sadly in July of 1997 Wade "Pop" Lindsey passed away at age 87. But there's satisfaction in knowing he was able to watch the business he started grow into a Spartanburg landmark.


2000's

2007

After graduating Wofford College, Pop Wade's grandson, Wade III, joined the team as a manager! We know Pop is very proud to see the third generation joining the family business.

2008

Wade's was voted Best Family Restaurant in Southern Living’s Reader Choice Awards beating out Paula Deen’s Lady and Sons in Savannah, GA.


2010's

2017

Wade's took home a recording-breaking SIX awards in the Herald-Journal's 2017 Best Of The Best Spartanburg contest!

2017

After 22 years, the iconic billboard campaign ended in order to focus efforts in more tangible ways in the Spartanburg community.

2017

Wade's celebrated 70 YEARS in business!

TODAY

Through the years our customers have continued to remind us that the reason they visit Wade's so often is the friendliness of the staff, the speed of service and the quality and taste of the food. We look forward to serving Spartanburg for the next 70 years!

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