SHAWNEE, OK, USA - Did you know?
Van's Pig Stand
Oklahoma's oldest bar-b-que restaurant continuously owned and operated by the same family for 90 years.
Restaurants come and go. Many close up before six months. Successful ones often get bought out by new people as owners look towards retirement.
Van's Pig Stand celebrates 90 years in Shawnee. Nearly a century of some of the best BBQ and sides you can imagine.
Leroy "Van" Vandegrift began cooking for his fellow roughnecks in the newly drilled oilfields of central Oklahoma in the 1920's.
By 1928, he opened his first stand in Wewoka and a second in Seminole. His third stand was opened in Shawnee in 1930 (the same year he married his bride, Thelma.)
Van and Thelma proved a good team, and the restaurant moved across the street to its current location in 1935. As the Great Depression caused much economic ruin, Van's lowered its prices from 30 cents back to 10 cents; or a malt and sandwich for 20 cents. Van's delighted kids and adults by bringing the first ice cream machine to the area.
Thelma is credited with the creation of the "Vanized Potato" an ingenious blend of potato, bacon, onion and garlic butter still a favorite in 2020.
Van's son Jerry began in the Pig Stand business in 1959 and became the owner in 1974. Now the third generation, Jerry's son, Jev and his daughter and son in law, Mark and Nina Shuman are at the grills, making high quality food at affordable prices for the 21st century.
There are currently four Pig Stands. The original still at 717 E Highland. A second Shawnee location at 3815 N Harrison and locations in Moore, Norman and Purcell.