Fosters soft-serve

From left, Isla Gonzalez, Othello Gonzalez and Rylan Boyle celebrate the mighty Fosters soft-serve milkshake.

In the Fosters Freeze heyday of the 1960s and 70s, there were seven burger, fries and shakes restaurants for families to pop into for a quick meal in the area between Carpinteria and Goleta. The Carpinteria store opened in 1961, and this weekend, the last of the South Coast seven will close its doors on Aug. 23. 

The restaurant is currently owned by the Pettit family, the children of the late Dave Pettit, who was involved in the operation of the Carpinteria restaurant from 1964 until his death in 2012, purchasing the franchise in 1975. “It’s all I’ve ever done,” Pettit told CVN in 2011.  

For decades, the fast food restaurant with signature soft cone ice cream cones, treated Carpinteria High School and Cate School “Athletes of the Week” to a burger on the house, a weekly ritual that satisfied the appetites of athletes since before Carpinteria High School moved from Carpinteria Avenue to Foothill Road in 1968.

When an establishment has been in operation for 50 years, the kids who used to go there eventually bring in their own kids too. “I still get people from town, who moved away,” Pettit said. “They bring their kids back here when they visit.”

Fosters Freeze on Carpinteria Avenue will close permanently on Sunday, Aug. 23. Locals will surely miss the beloved diner. 

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