A little Wienermobile history before the rolling frankfurter hits town

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The Oscar Mayer Wienermobile has a long history in Chicago. | Courtesy of Oscar Mayer Wienermobile

Let’s be frank, the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile, which hits town this week, has a long history in Chicago.

In 1936, the chassis for the original Wienermobile was built here by theGeneral Body Co. of Chicago.

Fifty years before that, Oscar F. Mayer moved to Chicago from Detroit at the age of 17 and the company everyone knows today began to take shape in a meat market he ran on the North Side.

The company has since embedded itself in the minds of millions of Americans with the “The Oscar Mayer Wiener Song” and millions of unforgettable sightings of the roaming Wienermobile.

If you want to check out the Wienermobile, it will be visiting Mariano’s grocery stores:

• Friday, 2112 N. Ashland Ave., noon to 3 p.m.

• Saturday, 1615 S. Clark St.. 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

• Sunday, 4700 Gilbert Ave., Western Springs, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

• Monday, 1720 N. Milwaukee Ave., Vernon Hills, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Though the beloved 27-foot rolling hot dog grabs the kind of attention most companies could only dream of, things have occasionally gone sideways for the Wienermobile.

Here are a few instances in which it caused gapers’ traffic ofa different kind:

• 2002 Northern Virginia — The Wienermobile accidentally wanders onto a restricted road near the Pentagon and get pulled over by state police. The Daily Press out of Newport News, Virginia, went with this headline: TROOPER FEARS THE WURST, STOPS WIENERMOBILE ON ROAD NEAR PENTAGON

• 2007 Tucson, Arizona — The Wienermobile is pulled over by a cop when its “Yummy” license plate mistakenly appeared in a police database as stolen.

• 2008 Coeur d’Alene, Idaho — A vandal uses a marker to inflict about $1,000 in graffiti damage to the Wienermobile while parked outside a hotel.

• 2009 Mount Pleasant, Wisconsin — The Wienermobile crashes through the garage of a home after the driver steps on the wrong pedal. No one was injured.

• 2015 Enola, Pennsylvania — The Wienermobile slides off a road and crashes into a pole. No one was injured.

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