The Claycord Online Museum – Old Commercials from Long’s Drugs & Did You Know Long’s Is Still in Business?

January 13, 2020 16:00 pm · 37 comments

Of course you all remember Long’s Drugs. They had over 500 locations before they sold their company to CVS in 2008.

Did you know? Long’s is still open, but only in the State of Hawaii, where they currently have 40 stores.

ABOUT THE CLAYCORD ONLINE MUSEUM: The Claycord Online Museum is made up of historical photos, documents & anything else that has to do with the history of our area.

If you have any old photos or items that you’d like to place in the Claycord Online Museum, just scan or take a photo of them, and send them to the following address: It doesn’t matter what it is, even if it’s just an old photo of your house, a scan of an old advertisement or an artifact that you’d like us to see, send it in and we’ll put it online!

Click on the tag below titled “Claycord Online Museum” to view other items!

Anne January 13, 2020 at 4:14 PM

I miss Longs Drugs. I avoid CVS, they’re prices are very high and the stores are as clean and well organized as Longs use to be.

BURNBABYBURN January 13, 2020 at 5:05 PM

I agree. Even after the buyout, some of the CVS stores still had that Long’s feel, but not anymore. Kind of like when Home depot bought out Yardbirds. The store in Martinez still had employees and still felt like a Yardbirds. That’s gone as well. Miss both stores. Damn you Amazon!

Jojo Potato January 13, 2020 at 4:31 PM

Hawaii always loved Longs. So when CVS bought them they kept the name. Where else can those luau boys get mass quantities of Spam? Aloha

Concords January 13, 2020 at 5:29 PM

The comment above is correct. The ”Long’s” stores in Hawaii are really CVS, with all of their CVS brand products. Too bad because Long’s was a solid family owned company headquartered in Walnut Creek. CVS is owned by more of a hedge fund raider outfit. It shows.

S January 13, 2020 at 5:51 PM

Longs was the best… Test your own TV tubes…. Ink Pens in the old vending machine, send film to be developed…. Oh…. and the had a Pharmacy too // 🙂

Abbie R. January 13, 2020 at 6:56 PM

Longs had a fishing department in the late 1970’s to very early eighties…Live night crawlers and worms as well. I bought My first Sturgeon net there in 1984…In 1979 I bought .25 caliber pistol ammo at the counter and had to show My driver’s license, and sign My name and address in a book!…I thought that was state law, until I went to Hogan’s and found out that all ammo was available , no questions asked.

S January 13, 2020 at 7:19 PM

Grew up in Richmond, so the Long’s I went to was in San Pablo at the El Portal Plaza. Their Fishing stuff was in a separate store building about 2 blocks away. I remember that building was always neat to me as a kid, because it had a “Sea Level” marker on it… about 2 feet off the ground…. s’how I learned about sea level as well as above sea level and below…. Funny how little things like that stay in your mind

Justifiable languor January 14, 2020 at 10:03 AM

Hogans and is long gone too. There was such a nice comradery there. The husband would bump in to friends and family of exgirlfriends and long lost friends. I bought my first gift to him, a huge fluffy cold weather sleeping bag. He still has it.

John P January 13, 2020 at 5:55 PM

We really miss Longs. CVS sucks: their selections are limited and they push their brand over others.

iKrissy January 13, 2020 at 6:01 PM

Longs and Black’s Market in Orinda, and The Willows Restaurant.
The Moraga Barn. Montgomery Wards is also still in business.

S January 13, 2020 at 7:25 PM

sadly, it’s not the same Montgomery Wards; somebody just bought the rights to the name and started on online business with it…. when I was little we had Wards Hawthorne bikes, Alpline (?) tv’s… I think the gym shoes were called Skips; converse knock offs… Even got my Daisy Red Ryder BB Gun from the catalog….

Longgggs January 13, 2020 at 6:45 PM

Longs was a great store. I miss it. Way better than cvs.

dbcoop January 13, 2020 at 7:46 PM

i miss Longs- I remember the walnut creek store had fresh produce and a lot of quirky items- great store

dbcoop January 13, 2020 at 7:48 PM

Plus i hate the three foot long receipts that cvs gives

mohairs January 14, 2020 at 8:08 AM

Completely agree. We bought one item at CVS and our receipt was almost 5 feet tall. Ridiculous waste.

FPN January 13, 2020 at 8:07 PM

I worked for Longs Drugs in Plesant Hill . I worked in RX and Photo. Every 6 months we received a bonus a percentage of the profits are departments made. Full medical and dental also included family. We bought merchandise in the store at cost plus 10 per cent. Wages were good. We had a fantastic crew. It was one of the best times of my life. My best friend to this day I met when I worked at Longs. It was a great company..

Karen January 14, 2020 at 2:48 PM

I worked at Longs in Hawaii for 25 years, the first 15 or so was when it was still Longs. It was a great company to work for. Every time I see the Longs name over the CVS stores in Hawaii, I wish they would change the name. CVS can’t hold a candle to the real Longs.

Silva January 13, 2020 at 8:23 PM

My favorite was the one at Broadway and Pleasant Valley Road in Oakland. It was a huge store, and full to the gills with good stuff. It really was more of a department store. They had a whole camping department and a beautiful garden center. I still have lots of good things from there. If I needed anything they usually had it. I’ll never get over the loss of Longs.

ClayDen January 13, 2020 at 8:27 PM

Long’s is NOT still in business. Long’s in Hawaii is CVS with Long’s signage. Too bad.

Silva January 13, 2020 at 8:37 PM

I don’t even go to CVS. There’s just nothing there I need or want.

Tim M January 13, 2020 at 8:42 PM

I did know they are still in business.

Did you know that I seem to be unable to post in the “Talk about whatever” thread?

Mike January 13, 2020 at 9:12 PM

I worked at Longs in San Pablo as warehouse manager in the mid 2000s. It was a fun job. Lots of issues with upper management . It was not profitable at all. They ran it in to the ground. The stores in Hawaii are only branded Longs. The products are all CVS. Its just for face value

AJ January 14, 2020 at 8:01 AM

You really got it right about the management! all the way from assistant to the top.

Ilovepopcorn January 13, 2020 at 9:45 PM

Longs was a class act in so many ways. CVS is nothing like Longs. I miss the good old days. We had Simon’s! I miss Navalets too. Also I loved it when Andronicos was where the Cheesefactory is now. I miss the art supply stores too. We are forced into smaller choices all the time. Standard Brands was also a jewel that is gone forever. Too bad.

S January 14, 2020 at 10:17 AM

rather enjoying this thread….. Finding less and less who know SIMON’s… nostalgia at its best…..

Jojo Potato January 14, 2020 at 11:27 AM

How can I forget Simon’s. Got my bike stolen from there. A lovely Peugeot UO8, what we used to call a 10 speed BITD. The only trace left of Navelet’s is “Nursery Lane”. The little street next to Whole Foods in WC that also is a back entrance to Las Lomas high school. A madhouse every afternoon at 3:05.

WC Resident January 14, 2020 at 6:29 PM

I also had a Peugeot 10-speed in those days. One day I was barreling down the Danville highway when a lady turned left in front of me. I hit around her back wheel and went over the trunk. The bike did not fare as well with the front part of the bike’s frame getting snapped off. I got a new frame, front fork, and front wheel but the bike was never quite the same.

Prior to the development of Botelho we got groceries from the Luckys on Olympic at Broadway.

Once Botelho was developed we got groceries from the Co-op and household supplies from Simons. There was also a Ralphs at the corner of S. Calif and Newell. Pinky’s Pizza was never one of my favorites but I loved Lipperts and the bowling alley next to the Co-op.

Longs was a fairly late arrival. It was added after Olympic was extended to the west of S. California Blvd. Mr. Espinoza, the Walnut Creek Longs store manager, lived next door to us. We were on the hill overlooking Longs.

Doh January 13, 2020 at 11:22 PM

I’ve gone to CVS twice. Once when they opened and again after a few months when they hung a sign saying “new lower prices.” The prices weren’t lower. I blame CVS for encouraging Rite-aid to increase its prices. Some things I no longer buy there either because the price has doubled.

Anyone else notice the grocery stores are having an anti-price war? Safeway raises price so Nob Hill raises prices. And so it goes.

T. Payne January 14, 2020 at 8:45 AM

Prices are going up because of all the theft. Don’t bother reporting theft under $950, so everybody else has to subsidize the crooks. I’ve seen it at the Safeway in Clayton. It’s usually someone from over the hill loads up their cart, just walks out of the store to a waiting car and they speed off up Kirker Pass before the cops are even able to get there. Not that they would be allowed to do anything anyway. Must be frustrating to be a cop these days.

james January 14, 2020 at 12:38 AM

CVS has eliminated anything that was a good deal,or low priced with a bunch of store brand designer crap I will never buy.They have eliminated their home improvement section,that sold things to fix stuff around the house.I think they believe these high prices will save their store,but I don’t go there for anything but a money order occasionally now,,and they are the only place ive ever been to that wants to see your ID to buy a money order,because CVS has been known for money laundering.CVS is the next store to go,and good riddance.

anon January 14, 2020 at 6:49 AM

I worked for the Longs Corporate office in WC for 17 years, until I moved away. It was so difficult watching the friends I made at Longs lose their jobs. It took many years for some of them to get over it. I really loved working there. We were a family. Some of them still meet annually for lunch. I also miss the stores. CVS cannot compare!

Martha Lee January 15, 2020 at 8:24 AM

I worked at the GO in Stores Payroll from 1985 to 1990.
Bob Long was the president at that time and Les Anderson was the VP. Great place to work

WC Resident January 14, 2020 at 8:34 AM

Longs had a system where the price sticker on something in the store also had a code that was the store’s cost for the item. When employees took advantage of the store cost plus 10 percent deal the cashier would ring up the items using the price code plus 10 percent. explains the code used at Longs and takes a guess at the one used by Walgreens.

While I remember the Longs Drugs stores fondly it was also an era where I liked nearly all retail stores and also that there were more products unique to each store. These days, retail stores all seem to have identical Made in China junk. You go to Macys and it’s the same things that you can get at Target. It’s discouraging in that if a specific size or type of item is not available at a local Ace hardware for example I know it’s not going to be available at any local hardware store.

FPN January 14, 2020 at 1:15 PM

The code.was Charleston. 1234567890 and a X meant the letter was doubled. If the code was CHX the price was 122. The system worked grest.

Old-school guy January 15, 2020 at 11:55 AM

Worst kept secret of its day. My favorite was the price of firewood; HOT

Mimi (original) January 14, 2020 at 3:46 PM

I live near the CVS on Treat Blvd., and I REALLY miss Long’s! Long’s always had interesting things to browse and great items at holiday times. CVS, with their weird carpeting and talking “head” in the cosmetic department freak me out!! I only go in there when I’m desperate for something RIGHT NOW! UGH!

Tamra January 14, 2020 at 8:16 PM

I worked at the Corp. office in Walnut Creek for years. Best job I ever had and nothing has come close since.

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