Boomer’s Drive-in, a Bellingham staple, is having its 34th anniversary sale. The sale is locally known as Boomuary, as it takes place during January and February every year. Instead of their normal, individually marked prices, every burger on the menu is reduced to $3.44.
In winter, it isn’t unusual for restaurants to experience a bit of a lull in customers, especially after the holidays. Boomer’s has a two-month long sale to start the new year and encourage customers to stop by for a meal at a lower price than normal.
“We do it to boost sales, we do it to put a little notice, a little attention on us. It’s kind of a fun thing. I mean, at this point, it’s formulated into this thing where it's definitely an event for Bellingham,” said Tony Steacy, who owns and runs Boomer’s with his wife Katy Steacy. Katy Steacy’s family opened the business in 1989.
People know Boomer’s even without the sale. It is locally famous for its drive-in style dining, classic burgers, hard ice cream shakes and waffle fries.
“The uniqueness of Boomer’s annual celebration, people look forward to that,” said Guy Occhiogrosso, the CEO and president of the Bellingham Regional Chamber of Commerce. “You could argue Boomer’s is a part of our identity.”
Tony Steacy said that on busier nights of the week, usually Fridays, Boomer’s can easily serve over a thousand customers, each order usually containing multiple burgers. With this influx of customers and orders, the anniversary sale can be a rewarding but intense time of year for employees.
“I’d say the hardest part is overstimulation. It’s loud, there's a lot of things going on at once,” Tony Steacy said.
Tony Steacy sees this challenging work as a great opportunity for staff to learn to work well together and how to handle a huge amount of customers at once.
“I always say, if you can handle [working] a Friday night during Boomuary, you can handle just about any other rush the restaurant can offer,” he said.
Boomer’s Drive-in has a large selection of burgers to choose from, so there is bound to be something for everyone. Tony Steacy noted that during the sale, the Big Boom – a half pound burger – is the most popular, due to the deal you get for the amount of food.
“Honestly I’ll just kind of eat anything there, all the burgers are good,” said Abel Tolpin, a fan of Boomer’s.
Tolpin visited Boomer’s multiple times during their last anniversary sale but not as much this year due to how busy it has gotten. He still tries to make it when he can. Tolpin added that if he is hungry, he prefers the Big Boom, but he also enjoys the Honey Dijon Chicken burger.
“The only thing to not love is how busy it gets. There's no downside other than that,” said Tolpin.
The Steacys made it clear that they are very lucky and grateful to do so well and receive such amazing support from the community.
“We’re happy to have so many customers,” Tony Steacy said.
Sophie Bechkowiak (she/her) is a city life reporter for The Front this quarter. She is a junior majoring in journalism with a minor in philosophy. In her free time, she enjoys creating art, watching bad reality TV and being outside. You can reach her at email@example.com