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  • Writer's pictureGrant Guy

Thunderbird Lodge

Vintage neon sign alert!

The neon sign at the Thunderbird Lodge in Riverside is epic.

The 50 foot tall neon sign is topped with a thunder bird, known in American Indian folklore, who sits high in the sky looking over downtown Riverside.

The Thunderbird Lodge was originally built in 1960 as one of a chain of motels all with the same name.

Many many MANY changes have been made to the 44 room budget motel since then, but the magnificent sign remains.

The Thunderbird Lodge has been designated a historical landmark by the City of Riverside.

It also won a Historic Preservation award from The Old Riverside Foundation.

Pro tip: google a few pictures and yelp reviews before making a reservation - the sign is pretty much the only remnant of its former vintage glamour that remains.


Southern California #139 - last visited March 2023

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