“It’s fun to get back in the groove,” Chris Beckord, owner of Grayslake’s Dog N Suds, said about the recent reopening of the local drive-in eatery.
, located at 454 Center St., has been open since 1964, with Beckord as its owner since 1996. Beckord said the quality of the food and the restaurant’s drive-in structure, which has been maintained since it first opened, keep costumers coming back.
In the true spirit of the 1950s, this drive-in features carhops who come up to customers’ cars to take their order and deliver their food--all without the customer having to leave their car. On warmer days customers can enjoy eating outside at one of the restaurant’s picnic tables.
The restaurant annually opens late February and stays open through the end of the October, closing for the winter season.
“We work a lot when we’re open,” he said; so in the off-season, along with cleaning and refurbishing equipment, Beckord said he also gets to “relax a little.”
Repeat costumer Nicole Thorp said she enjoys coming to Dog N Suds with her young son Silas because the drive-in aesthetic is comfortable.
“And it’s fun for my son,” she said.
When asked why he liked coming, Silas exclaimed, “The food!”
Carhop Janna Spriester is a freshman at College of Lake County and has worked at Dog N Suds for three to four years, she said.
Beckord said he employs a lot of local kids in the community and he has a low turnover rate with his employees.
When asked why costumers keep coming back, Spriester said, “Costumers really like our food. Where else can you get a Coney Dog or Texas Burger?”
Customer Iam O’Neal said this was his second time at the eatery and that the food is what made him return.
Customer Randy Andrews considers himself a “regular.” “It’s close to work. I usually order the Pork Tenderloin,” he said.
Costumers can choose an array of classic American foods including a variety of hot dogs, burgers, specialty sandwiches, wraps ice cream treats and more. Baskets include a generous serving of french fries and Dog N Suds famous homemade pudding or coleslaw. The restaurant even features vegetarian options, such as the Veggie Burger or Vegetarian Sub.
Beckord said for those who are trying out the restaurant for the first time, a must-try meal would be the Root Beer Float and Texas Burger Basket. Dogs N Suds’ presence in the community extends far beyond the food it serves.
“We’ve sponsored Grayslake baseball since the program started,” he said. The eatery also hosts fund-raisers, two in May and one in September, for local schools. It has also helped sponsor those who come in and ask for help, he said. Beckord also invites the community to participate in collector car shows, which take place the first and third Tuesday of every month starting in May and running through September.
But for Beckord, giving back to the community is nothing compared to how much he appreciates the support the community has shown the restaurant.
“The Grayslake community really supports us. We have many repeat costumers. We really appreciate that,” he said.
Beckord is also a member of the Grayslake Economic Development Commission and Grayslake Chamber of Commerce.
Dog N Suds is open every day March through August from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and on Sunday through Thursday in February, September and October 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. For more information, visit call 847-223-4601 or visit dognsudsgrayslake.com.