From a gas station in the middle of farmland to a nationally recognized truck stop and restaurant, Johnson’s Corner, as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives once said of us, has exemplified, “the industrious spirit and can-do attitude that have made America great.”
In 1950, Joe S. Johnson and one of his station managers, Clayton Bearly, staked the outlines of a new Johnson’s Corner on the old US Highway 87, which is today’s I-25 in Colorado. With nothing around but farmland and a beautiful view of the Rocky Mountains, Johnson’s Corner opened in 1952.
Most thought Joe crazy for building in the middle of nowhere, but shortly after he built his truck stop, construction began on an interstate highway that would run right in front of his new business. The words “build it and they will come” never rang more true. When I-25 opened in the early 60s, the legacy of Johnson’s Corner began. Open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year, Johnson’s Corner has never closed its doors.
Renowned for its World Famous Cinnamon Rolls, Johnson’s Corner was even featured in a Hollywood movie. In 1995, it was a location for the United Artists’ movie “Larger than Life,” starring Bill Murray and Matthew McConaughey. Those two actors are only a few of the many celebrities to grace the booths of Johnson’s Corner over the years.
In 1998, Travel & Leisure magazine picked Johnson’s Corner as having one of the “Ten Best Breakfasts in the World.” A few years later, in 2003, it was featured on the WB2 Network as one of the best roadside attractions in the United States. And in 2004, the Food Network called Johnson’s Corner the “Top Truck Stop Restaurant” in the country.
Joe always insisted that his business provide excellent food and excellent service at a fair price. Today, we uphold the high ideals that he stood for as we continue the Johnson’s Corner tradition. Our mission is to build on Joe’s legacy of excellent products and service through integrity, honesty and teamwork. Our philosophy is to do what it takes to serve and support the finest people in the world: our customers.
Joe was a humble servant and friend to all who had the pleasure of meeting him. When he passed away in 1981, Colorado lost a true pioneer, as well as a beloved friend and respected entrepreneur. His legacy continues through his family, who still own and operate Johnson’s Corner, fulfilling his wish that the truck stop always stay open.