Hot Dog War – Lawton’s Famous vs. Lawrence’s Famous

 CARL RUSSO/Staff photo –  The sign on the Lawton’s building at Canal Street and Broadway in Lawrence has been redone as “Lawrence Famous Franks” in a style similar to the original.

Bedeviled by an ever-weakening embankment, constant canal-related shut-downs, proposed plans of Enel and a kerfuffle over stand ownership, Joanne Curley owner of the Lawton’s Famous Frankfurter recipes closed the iconic hot dog stand. Curley is in a new scuffle with former landlord Mike Graffeo owner of the historic stand and property at the corner of Canal Street and Broadway in Lawrence. Despairing of ever getting the original hot dog stand on solid footing, Curley gave up the space and with city sanction developed plans to open “Lawton’s”  just up the street in a new building – a replica of the old stand. Graffeo pulled-off an end-run around Curley’s plans and is ready to reopen the old stand as Lawrence Famous Frankfurters. Graffeo claims he hasn’t stolen any receipes and that his broader menu will feature sausages – the specialty of his new chef. Curley – still finalizing funding for her new Lawton-like restaurant- cries foul and seems to think Graffeo is out to fool people. She notes – “he  has put up new signs that closely mimick the old signs, even using some of the same images and words.”

In today’s Eagle Tribune, Bill Kirk writes:

 A gastronomic battle is shaping up between warring hot-dog stands, and it appears the real winner in this epic battle may be frankfurter aficionados of the Merrimack Valley.

Read the full article here at and follow the “hot dog war” shaping up in Lawrence.

One Response to Hot Dog War – Lawton’s Famous vs. Lawrence’s Famous