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Restaurants

About Culver's

Culver\'s

Culver Franchising System, Inc. is a privately owned and operated fast casual restaurant chain that operates primarily in the Midwestern United States. The first Culver’s opened in 1984 in Sauk City, Wisconsin. The chain now has 501 restaurants across the United States.

History

In 1984, Sauk City restaurateur George Culver purchased the A&W on Phillips Boulevard (U.S. Highway 12) and began renovating it.On July 18, 1984, along with wife Ruth, son Craig, and daughter-in-law Lea, he opened the first Culver’s Frozen Custard and ButterBurgers.

Wisconsin

In 1987, the Culvers were approached about franchising a restaurant in nearby Richland Center. The Culvers agreed, granting the franchisee a loose licensing agreement, charging no fees or royalties. Because the franchisee had invested very little of his own money, it was a simple matter for him to walk away a year later when he decided he no longer wanted to be in the restaurant business.

Midwest

As of 1993, Culver's was still a small, local chain, with only 14 restaurants across southern Wisconsin. Culver’s first restaurants outside Wisconsin opened in Buffalo, Minnesota in September 1995, Roscoe Illinois in December 1995, and Dubuque, Iowa, in November 1996. In February 1997 the company opened the first Culver’s in Texas.

Beyond the Midwest

The current franchising strategy is one of contiguous growth at a pace of about 40 new stores per year. The chain expanded into Colorado Springs, Colorado, Cheyenne and Wyoming in 2005, followed by an opening in Bowling Green, Kentucky in July 2006. Culver's shifted its attention to developing markets beyond the Midwest.

Future expansion

The Metro-98 prototype, developed in 2006 and first constructed in Fort Dodge, is much more compact than the traditional 120-seater commonly built through much of Culver's expansion. While the Metro-98 has less seating to offer guests, it also reduces the amount of land needed for construction by around 20%.

Venture into casual dining

Culver's Blue Spoon Cafe, opened its first store in Prairie du Sac, Wisconsin in 2000 as a soup-sandwich-salad restaurant as Blue Spoon Creamery Cafe.The name Blue Spoon comes from the color of the spoons used at the Culver's fast food restaurants.A second store in Middleton, Wisconsin was open for two years, but closed in August 2011.

Menu

Culver’s menu features Culver’s trademark ButterBurgers and frozen custard, (which is also sold in bulk). The rest of the menu runs the gamut from pork and fish, fried chicken to salads and specialty sundaes.

Sponsorships

Culver's sponsors sports teams including the St. Cloud Rox, Wisconsin Badgers, Milwaukee Admirals, Iowa Hawkeyes, Minnesota Wild, and Chicago Cubs.
Official mascot

Culver's has a mascot, an anthropomorphic ice cream cone named Scoopie.

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