Kemps Hamburger Stand in Burlington, Mass.

Before fast food and trendy burger chains took control, places like Kemps in Burlington, Mass., reigned supreme in pleasing those with a love for that all-American favorite, the hamburger.

This colorful, brightly lit 1950s-style hamburger stand brought in crowds that loved the idea of dining on a tasty burger along with fries and a shake for under $1. Located on Route 3A right by the former IGA supermarket that eventually became the former Building 19 discount store, Kemps looked like something out of a Happy Days episode.

While Burlington has just about every store and restaurant one would ever need today, I miss the innocence and simplicity of businesses like Kemps.  Nothing fancy, no gourmet tendencies, but just a place that everyone seemed to enjoy before so many online reviewers spoiled our fun by becoming  critical, cynical and condescending.

Kemps would probably not do well on Yelp today, but who cares? We never asked for much then, and were just grateful for an inexpensive night out amongst good people. Even a six-year-old could see that, like me, in the 1960s!

Does anyone remember Kemps?


  1. My dad grew up in Arlington and it was always a big deal when he, his five brothers and sisters, and his parents went to Kemps in their 1961 Chevy Wagon. The biggest problem was deciding who was going to sit on the tailgate! Eight people, $4 to eat. We didn't have much, but we had Kemps.

  2. As remember they also sold hot dogs.

  3. As I remember they sold hot dogs too.

  4. I remember Kemps.burgers were 10 cents. That was in the mid 1960's.

  5. Kemps was founded by Frannie Fox. His father owned IJ Fox the furriers before fur became a no-no.

  6. Nobody has a photo of that place? Let this be a lesson. TAKE PICTURES OF THINGS THAT SEEM DULL, FOR ONE DAY THEY WILL BE PRECIOUS PICTURES.


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