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Crazy Clown Promotes Local Restaurant on the Streets of Murfreesboro

Many Murfreesboro residents have at some time traveled Old Fort Parkway near the I-24 overpass, done a double-take and said something to the effect of, “What is that crazy clown doing?” upon first seeing Crazy Clown.

The kooky character is the advertising plan for All American Cafe, and he can often be spotted in the general vicinity of the restaurant riding his tricycle, dancing and waving or displaying a sign promoting the burgers and breakfast plates offered at the establishment.

“Action advertising was always on my mind,” said Ron Akbari, who opened the All American Cafe with his wife about five years ago. “I had an orange outfit I got in Vegas. I never wore it, it was just in the closet. . . . I first put the clothes on myself, and put the clown mask on.”

Akbari hit the streets to promote his business, but soon realized the bulk of his time needed to be spent in the restaurant and, soon, another individual assumed the role of the clown. From there, the character took on a life of his own.

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“He is one of my good friends,” said Akbari. “I told him if I open another store, it will be his; he is working for his own store.”

The clown has attracted a lot of attention to the restaurant over the years.

“People would come in and say, ‘Who’s that crazy clown?’” relates Akbari, who came to the U.S. from Iran in 2001 with only $11 in his pocket. “So customers put that name on him, Crazy Clown, and he accepted it.”

The clown’s identity is a secret. Among the few details Akbari provides about the man in the makeup is that he has seven years of acting experience.

“He’s a character, this is his passion. . . . And he won’t talk to you; that’s his policy,” Akbari said, adding that the clown can communicate a great deal without using language.

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It’s not always easy being the clown.

“Sometimes people throw stuff at him—rocks, ketchup,” Akbari said. “He’s been in a fight once; someone gave him the finger and he reacted.”

But he is generally a good-natured clown, peddling over the Interstate, stopping to wave, listening to music, dancing around.

“When the weather is good, it’s good to go out,” Akbari said.

“This is the fourth bike we’ve bought for him,” Akbari continued, pointing to the newest three-wheeled pedal-powered vehicle—the clown’s trademark mode of transportation—sitting in the cafe next to the doughnut counter.

The All American Cafe staff emphasizes their place is not just all about the clown, though.

“We want people to enjoy the food. Come and try it,” Akbari said, encouraging some cafe visitors to try a grilled doughnut before giving them a sample of the cranberry-walnut-celery chicken salad.

“His job is to bring the people in, our job is to cook the food,” Akbari said.

So stop into the All American Cafe sometime, grab a doughnut, a Philly cheesesteak, a chicken salad or a breakfast burrito, and tell ’em Crazy sent you.

 

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About the Author

Bracken, a 2003 graduate of MTSU’s journalism program, is the founder and publisher of The Murfreesboro Pulse. He lives in Murfreesboro with his wife, graphic artist and business partner, Sarah, and son, Bracken Jr. Bracken enjoys playing the piano, sushi, Tool, football, chess, jogging, spending time in his backyard with his chickens, hippie music, climbing at The Ascent, bowling, swimming, soup, tennis, sunshine, revolution, defiance and anarchy. He can cook a mean grilled cheese, and can fry just about anything.

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3 Comments

  • Relay Eng.

    Wish him the best of luck in this traffic… Pray for him cause folks are crazy! Breakfast is the best in the Boro. Dont eat lunch in there much but the chicken salad is pretty good.

  • laura wright

    I LOVE this clown. he makes me laugh, I look forward to seeing him. I live in Amherst ny and go to Murfreesboro a couple times a year to visit my daughter and her family. It is a big joke between me and my now 7 year old grandson, he says look grandma, your clown, I first pretended I was all excited which he thought was hysterical a couple yrs ago. But then I really looked forward to seeing him and look for him. I want to get out of the car and give him a hug, lol. I just went there September for my grandsons birthday and somehow I missed him all week, I mentioned it. My grandson got a big kick out of me missing the clown. I usually see him almost daily, just happened to miss him this time. Who ever he is please tell him, THANK YOU for the amusement and joy, can’t help but smile, I always give him thrumbs up, he porbably calls me the crazy lady, or thumbs, lol, I call him MY CLOWN. if you made a doll of him I would place him looking out the window and make other people smile. Can’t wait to make to your restaurant… Thanks for the laughs. P.S. Does he have a clown name? May I suggest JOYNNY

  • Kat

    Have been to the All American Café many times. Love the Chicken Salad, the Breakfast Sandwich and the Doughnuts…they are easily the best in town. So light and fluffy I can eat a half dozen (did I actually admit that). The owners, Ron and Anna, are friendly and delightful. Their smiles make my day. The bright and colorful décor of the restaurant alone will cheer you up. One of my favorite places.

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