“Good Food Fast” for over 50 years


A replica of the original Waffle House sign. This sign is at the museum.

On Labor Day of 1955, the doors of Waffle House #1opened for business in Atlanta suburb Avondale Estates. Avondale neighbors Joe Rogers and Tom Forkner opened it because they wanted to own their own business, and they liked the idea of a business that focused on the people – staff and customers alike.Today, 57 years and 877,388,027 waffles later, it has evolved into a chain with over 1,500 restaurants in the United States.

On Sept. 8, the accomplishments of Rogers and Forkner were celebrated by the Georgia Historical Society’s placing of a marker on the site of the original Waffle House (now a museum). When Rogers and Forker took the stage to speak, they gave nothing but praise to the people of Avondale. “They’re the greatest people in the world,” Rogers said.

Walt Ehmer, current CEO of Waffle House, was also very supportive of Avondale. “We’re proud to call Avondale home.”

As Rogers ended his speech, he made the key point that he and Forker made when they opened the restaurant: focus on the people. “We didn’t build Waffle House. The people behind the counter built Waffle House,” Rogers said.