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ORANGE COUNTY CALENDAR: ARTS, ENTERTAINMENT, LEISURE
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Satisfy Urges for Burgers, Fries Bikes and Crafts

September 02, 2000|CHRIS CEBALLOS | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

There's more to Westminster than Little Saigon. While the lively and spirited Vietnamese community has made the city into something of a national landmark, Westminster has been around for 43 years and spans three Thomas Guide map pages. So forgo the pho for a day and take a chance on some other grub, bargain stencils and a fat ride.

Good Vibrations

The aroma of leather is almost overwhelming in the showroom of Harley-Davidson of Westminster (13031 Goldenwest St., [714] 893-6274). But then, what would one expect from a Harley dealer and repair shop that's been doing business for 27 years.

Harley leather jackets may run $285 to $375, but tank tops and T-shirts are only $20. That's about as inexpensive as it gets. The showroom has a dozen 2001 model Harleys ranging from the entry-level Sportster XL 883C for $6,532 to the plush FLHR Road King touring bike at $20,588.

John Davidson, no relation, has three. He said he likes having his name on his bike.

"I bought my first Harley here, a 1992 XLS," Davidson said. "I've also got a 2000 [model] Heritage Soft Tail. I've done quite a bit of business here and I'm very satisfied."

Davidson says among the draws of Harleys are their unique character and mystique: "It's like the Beach Boys say: 'Good vibrations!' "

The 42-year-old Fountain Valley resident, who has always had a motorcycle in his garage, says he enjoys buying a stripped-down model and customizing it himself. "Part of the fun of it is trying to find the right balance [of accessories on the bike]," Davidson says. "There's a lot of detail on bikes that you just don't see on cars.

"You get people from all walks of life on Harleys: those just wanting a hobby, some who love the freedom. It's kind of like a brotherhood," he says. "It's never, 'What do you do for a living?' or any of that kind of competitiveness. It's the machines that kind of tie you together."

The showroom and service center is open Tuesday-Friday, 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Saturday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.; closed Sunday and Monday.

Where's the Grease?

Walking up to the order window at Tomboy's (15032 Beach Blvd., Midway City, [714] 897-3444) you can almost imagine hearing John Belushi say, "Cheeseburger-cheeseburger-cheeseburger! No Coke; Pepsi!"

At this joint, the specialties are the cheeseburgers, and they do not serve Coke.

From the street it looks like the smallest and dingiest greasy spoon a cholesterol lover could hope for. In actuality, this burger joint has the most spacious dinning area and the cooks are constantly cleaning the kitchen.

Which may account for their having the world's best (at least the world of this cub reporter) onion rings and French fries. The hot and tasty golden brown rings and crisp fries almost let you get away with not using napkins.

Like a scaled-down version of the Harbor House in Seal Beach, the dining area of Tomboy's is decorated with an assortment of classic Hollywood head shots and movie posters, with James Dean, Paul Newman, Elvis and Humphrey Bogart commanding most of the wall space. But above the entrance to the dining area is a picture of Marlon Brando from "The Wild One," decked out in his Levi's and leathers.

Besides the burgers, breakfast meals and burritos are served all day and the deli sandwiches are lean. Four specials come with fries and a Pepsi: the hamburger for $3.30, the double cheeseburger or the avocado burger for $3.80 and the triple cheeseburger for $4.60. Drink refills are 50 cents.

Tomboy's is open daily from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m., sometimes as late as 10 p.m. depending on the crowd.

Back to School

This is the busiest time of year at the Art Supply Warehouse (6672 Westminster Blvd., [714] 891-3626). With the fall semester beginning this month, students from neighboring Golden West College and even Santa Ana and Orange Coast colleges flock to this art supply superstore.

"It's the only decent store in the area where you can find everything good," said graphic designer Matt Thomas, 24, of Westminster.

Paintbrushes, clay tools, poster board, sketch books and more fill the aisles. More than a dozen different X-Acto knives line one aisle with various blade and handle sizes ranging from $1.89 to $6.39.

The store also has an excellent book section with everything from a guide to illustrating with markers for $7.18 to a visual quick-start guide to Adobe's Illustrator 7, for Mac and Windows users, $9.

And help is easily within eyesight, as a dozen twentysomething employees in red aprons work the floor of the store's dozen aisles. But then again, it is the busy season.

"Our busiest seasons are when the colleges go back in, and we're in the middle of that," said Jim Thorton, who's worked at the store for 11 years.

"We've been here since 1977," Thorton said. "We try to get the best prices that we can so we can offer the best prices to the customer. I think that's part of why we've survived."

The store is open Monday-Friday, 9:30 a.m.-8 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

(BEGIN TEXT OF INFOBOX / INFOGRAPHIC)

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