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The popular soda fountain at Whaley's East End drug store in Jefferson City dates back to 1943 (July 20, 2023 photo from 939 the Eagle's Brian Hauswirth)

Mid-Missouri’s flock to Whaley’s original location before next week’s closing

The popular soda fountain at Whaley’s East End drug store in Jefferson City dates back to 1943 (July 20, 2023 photo from 939 the Eagle’s Brian Hauswirth)

Jefferson City-area residents have been packing Whaley’s East End drug store, to get one more drink from its old-fashioned soda machine before it closes next week.

Whaley’s opened its doors on East High in 1943, with its popular soda fountain. A 939 the Eagle reporter was at that location on Thursday afternoon, and so many patrons were inside to order sodas that Whaley’s ran out of ice for sodas. Patrons didn’t mind and got sodas without ice.

Whaley’s has sold to Walgreens, and Tuesday will be the final day for the Whaley’s stores. Whaley’s statement to its customers says the independent pharmacy industry has become more challenging over the past several years, citing an increase in cost for goods and a decrease in reimbursement from insurance companies.

Whaley’s says its pharmacy and soda fountain have helped people get well and put smiles on their faces with Cherry cokes since 1943. Tuesday will be the final day for the three Jefferson City Whaley’s stores.


  1. I would really look for the original East End location to reopen as a coffee/snack shop, if the owners would get more sociable with Jefferson City business folks. Leaving the soda counter and making a nice second location for the bakery uptown would be great. It would be a complete waste of perfect location if they didn’t somebody didn’t look into that type of business there.

  2. And just FYI, the reporter apparently doesn’t know what an ‘old fashioned soda machine’ is. Whaley’s hasn’t served true soda fountain drinks for many years. The days of getting a ‘phosphate’ drink are long gone. That machine in the background is a standard modern soda machine.

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