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Orillia family opened one of Canada's first KFC franchises

After fired razed downtown restaurant, Carters opened new restaurant at Sundial that featured a drive-thru KFC booth connected to the main kitchen
149 c sundial inn c 1962
This aerial photo shows the Sundial Inn, at the north end of Orillia, just off Highway 11, circa 1962.

Postcard Memories is a weekly series of historic postcard views and photos submitted by Marcel Rousseau.

Some were previously published by the Orillia Museum of Art and History and in the book Postcard Memories Orillia.

In 1907 A.T. Carter purchased a small ice cream store known as Li’l Harry’s in downtown Orillia. The name was changed to Carter's Candy Palace and in the early 1930s Archie’s children, Aileen and Veldon, took over the business.

Over the next several years the business expanded to a full-service restaurant and banquet hall. In 1955, the Carters obtained one of the earliest KFC franchises in Canada.

On June 21, the building was destroyed by fire and the Carters arranged to continue operating the KFC franchise by occupying the former O.W.L.P. building on West Street, just north of the Opera House, until a new permanent location was found.

Ten months after the downtown fire, on April 10, 1962, Carter’s Sundial Restaurant opened for business and featured a drive-thru KFC booth connected to the main kitchen. 

The new location at the north end of Orillia and built by H. M. Doner and Son soon became a favourite stopping place for a very large clientele of travelers and local families.