Two Iconic Grand Junction Signs Found Hidden in Orchard Mesa
As it turns out, two iconic Grand Junction drive-in movie signs have been lingering around the valley this entire time.
If you head out to Orchard Mesa, tucked away behind a locked fence, you'll find these two pieces of Grand Junction history peeking out from behind a water tower.
Grand Junction's Chief and Rocket Drive-Ins
Do you remember the old Chief and Rocket drive-in theaters? They used to be on North Avenue where you now find Wally World and Texas Roadhouse. For those of us growing up in Grand Junction in the 70s, these theaters were a childhood fixture.
These Old Grand Junction Signs Were Cool
While a bit dated, the signs at the entrances were really pretty cool. It's highly unlikely that in this day and age a business could display a sign with imagery like that of the Chief drive-in. That probably wouldn't fly in today's world.
Where You'll Find These in Grand Junction?
Word had been circulating for some time the two signs were hidden in Orchard Mesa. A post went up on the "You Know You're From Grand Junction When" Facebook page. This info pointed me in the right direction.
If you head to the water plant in Orchard Mesa, just up the hill on 26 1/4 Road from the Orchard Mesa Cemetery, you'll find them. Unfortunately, this is a secure, fenced-in area, with no access to the buildings.
Being somewhat familiar with the area, it was possible to head over to the south side of the fenced area and catch a glimpse of where the signs are stored. These shots were taken through a chain-link fence, about 150 feet from the subjects.
...and a little bit closer...
The Future of the Signs
Why are these signs being stored here? The thread on "You Know You're From Grand Junction When..." states the signs belong to the Museum of Western Colorado, and the city is letting them store the signs at this location.
Within that same thread, one person came forward and asked if it were possible to purchase the signs. It would be interesting to see how that unwinds.
Can You Get a Closer Look at the Signs?
Not really. They are deep within a restricted area. The only reason I managed to get this close is I own property in the area. Even at that, I had to trespass a teeny little bit in order to get this close.
Thank you to those on Facebook who shared info about this. I really enjoyed seeing these old signs again. Hopefully, the museum will find a good use for them.