PASADENA ( — The original home of the Frisbee, the Hula Hoop and the Slip-N-Slide is about to meet the wrecking ball.

KNX 1070’s Ron Kilgore reports an iconic set of buildings formerly occupied by Wham-O and Sriracha sauce maker Huy Fong Foods is set to be demolished this week.

The industrial site at 835 East El Monte Street – widely known for its retro-looking low-slung buildings – will be knocked down to make way for an 88-townhome complex on the property located along the city line between San Gabriel and Rosemead on the Rubio Wash debris basin.

Known as the most successful manufacturer of hula hoops in the modern era, Wham-O began manufacturing its toy products in the 1950s and spent three decades at the El Monte Street location before it was replaced by Huy Fong Foods in 1986.

Under the direction of founders Arthur “Spud” Melin and Richard Knerr, Wham-O developed a plastic flying disc originally marketed as the Pluto Platter in 1957 before the company changed its name was changed to the Frisbee disc and quickly made it a household name.

In 1961, Wham-O introduced the original Slip-N-Slide, which was originally invented by upholsterer Robert Carrier while watching his son hose down their slick concrete driveway and slide down on it. An estimated 10 million of the water slides were sold between 1961 and 1992, according to the company.

The Olson Company, the new site’s developer, will include a tribute to Wham-O and Huy Fong Foods as part of the development, City Planning Manager Mark Gallatin told The Pasadena Star-News.


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