Peter Pan Drive-Inn
"Just Good Food" was served at 611 Helena Ave. for over 30 years
ORIGINAL LOCATION: 46°35'33.90"N 112° 2'9.33"


The Peter Pan Drive-Inn building, sitting derelict in 2008 on private land near the corner of Boulder Ave. and Blaine St., two miles east of its original location at 611 Helena Ave.

On September 18, 2009, the rear, older section of the building was moved to private property on East Sierra Drive in the Helena Valley (scroll down this page for photos of the move and of the building at its current location).

Opened in 1940 by William Ferrat (1886-1967), the Peter Pan changed hands at least twice before closing in the mid-1970s and being moved to make way for the cutting through of Cruse Avenue during Helena's Urban Renewal phase. The final occupant of the building before it was moved from Helena Ave. was likely the Buckland Insurance Agency, which first occupied the building in 1973.

1965 Addition

The French-style addition to the front of the original building was built in 1965. This rather poor image is from online newspaper archives.

On the Map...

Footprint of the Peter Pan superimposed on a recent satellite image. Cruse Avenue now cuts through the site.

The Derelict Building, 2008



The grand opening of the Peter Pan was held Oct. 12, 1940. William Ferrat sold out in 1943 to W. A. Gelhausen, who sold out in 1963 to William F. Howard.


Ashtray from the Peter Pan



Peter Pan Bowling Team Blouse

This blouse belonged to Betty Borsberry Foster; photo courtesy of her son, Patrick Foster.


1965 Renovation

Half-page Independent Record newspaper ad for the grand opening of the renovated Peter Pan, Dec. 12, 1965. The mansard-roofed addition was added then, as well as the "Parisian" decor.



Your editor remembers the Peter Pan's French-themed decor, and it was actually pretty nice.


The Peter Pan Building on the Move ~ September 18, 2009
Photos by Kerry Brown

Kerry Brown writes:

"I was driving west on Custer Ave. last Friday morning [Sept. 18 2009] and the traffic was stalled. When we finally started moving I saw the problem. It was the Peter Pan restaurant being pulled down the Frontage road (sans the front portion with windows and doors.) I took a couple of pictures before it was hauled on to Sierra Road, possibly to its next home. I could not follow any further as I had an appointment. Old dogs never die, they just move to new yards."

Thanks, Kerry, for sharing your serendipitous photos of the Peter Pan!


Turning East on Sierra Drive



The Peter Pan Building's New Location on Sierra Drive
Photos by Terry Bass ~ November 2009

The Peter Pan building is now located on private property in the 1900 block of East Sierra Drive in the Helena Valley. It will converted into a shop. It's good to know that will be put to use after all these years. Many thanks to Terry Bass for the fine photos!