More than 50 Hwy 55 Locations Are Planned for Illinois in the Next 10 Years
June 19, 2017 // Franchising.com // Litchfield, Illinois, – Already a household name in its home state of North Carolina and a highly-decorated brand in the restaurant industry and franchising community, Hwy 55 Burgers, Shakes and Fries is bringing its All-American, retro-themed diner to Illinois. The first location opens in Litchfield on Monday June 19.
With the new restaurant located on 1403 W. Ferdon St, (located off I-55.) residents of and visitors to Litchfield will experience an inviting dining experience with fresh, never-frozen burgers, premium sliced cheesesteaks piled high on steamed hoagies, and frozen custard made in-house every day. With its open-grill design, the kitchen's dedication and care when hand-crafting meals is front and center. The Litchfield restaurant adds nearly 60 jobs to the area.
"We are very excited to open the first Hwy 55 in the state of Illinois and bring good times and great food to the fine folks in Litchfield,” said Kim Walker, franchise owner for the Litchfield restaurant. “We ended up at this location due to the fact that it runs along I-55 on the west side and the famous Old Historic Route 66 on the east side with the original Route 66 Skyview Drive-In as well. We felt it‘s the perfect fit for the 50’s retro theme.” As part of the master franchise agreement, Duane and Kim Walker are planning 50 other locations in Illinois area in the next 10 years.
While celebrating its 26th year in business, Hwy 55 has sold the rights to more than 1,000 franchise locations around the world. Hwy 55 has also signed franchise agreements for Texas, West Virginia, Louisiana, Kentucky and southern Indiana and Virginia in the past year. The brand plans to open approximately 25 locations in 2017.
“I founded Hwy 55 Burgers, Shakes & Fries 25 years ago, to provide something that I felt was missing: great food, friendly service and honest value,” said Hwy 55 president Kenney Moore, who flipped every burger himself for the brand’s first two years of business. “Those principles continue today at all of our restaurants and we will look forward to treating more people in Litchfield and other areas in this great state in the coming years."
In keeping with Hwy 55’s continued mission to give back to the communities it enters, Hwy 55’s Andy’s Charitable Foundation and Litchfield owner Walker will donate 10% of sales from the restaurant’s first three days to the Hearts United Association (http://www.hua.org). Hearts United Association is nonprofit based in Litchfield, IL providing emergency assistance to local residents. Since its inception Hearts has focused on partnering with churches and other organizations to meet the most immediate needs of Litchfield residents. Andy’s Charitable Foundation is Hwy 55’s most visible commitment to community involvement.
In addition to appealing to the burger-loving public Hwy 55 has the full attention of the restaurant and franchising industries. Hwy 55, which is the official restaurant of National Hamburger Day and National Cheeseburger Day, won BurgerBusiness.com's "Best Burger" in 2012. In addition, Franchise Business Review named Hwy 55 one of the best restaurant franchises in the country. The brand also was recently named a top 500 franchise in the United States by Entrepreneur magazine for the second consecutive year and a "Next 20" restaurant brand by Nation's Restaurant News.
The industry darling also recently hosted the Hwy 55 Burgers, Shakes & Fries World Hamburger Eating Championship, the only hamburger eating competition recognized by All Pro Eating. On May 20, 2017, the #1 ranked independent competitive eater in the world Molly Schuyler set a world record in the 55 Challenge. The 100-pound mother of four devoured seven stacked Hwy 55 burgers (55 ounces of ground beef), a side of fries and a 24-oz. drink in one minute and thirty-seven seconds.
Hwy 55 Litchfield’s hours are 11 am – 9 pm Sunday through Thursday and 11 am – 10 pm on Friday and Saturday. For more information, call the restaurant at 217-324-3455.
About Hwy 55
Hwy 55, the official restaurant of National Hamburger Day and National Cheeseburger Day, is a retro-themed diner that features fresh, never-frozen hand-pattied burgers, house-made frozen custard, and other classic favorites in a unique open-kitchen setting. Founded in Goldsboro, North Carolina in 1991, Hwy 55 reflects founder Kenney Moore's commitment to authentic hospitality, incredible service and the world’s best burgers. As the Hwy 55 has grown, the industry has taken notice, with the brand winning BurgerBusiness.com's "Best Burger" in 2012. In 2017, for the third consecutive year, Hwy 55 was named a top 500 franchise in the United States for by Entrepreneur magazine. It has also been acknowledged by Franchise Business Review as a top restaurant franchise in the country and by Nation’s Restaurant News as a “Next 20” restaurant brand. Hwy 55 currently has 137 locations in 12 states, Denmark and the United Arab Emirates. Fans are invited to like Hwy 55 at https://www.facebook.com/Hwy55burgers or follow us at https://twitter.com/hwy55burgers. For more information, visit https://www.hwy55.com.