What’s the backstory behind the infamous Jack Box Antenna Ball?


Do you have a Jack Box Antenna Ball? That iconic symbol for the iconic fast food restaurant is more than just a fun car accessory.

The Jack Box Antenna Ball has been around for a long time. While this fun car accessory started as a way to show allegiance to a favorite Jack in the Box burger has turned into something more. How did this simple symbol turn into an iconic symbol?

Every brand seems to have a certain symbol that is associated with it. From the golden arches to a king, those brands and symbols go hand in hand. Whether protected by trademark or just a fan favorites, fans associate those images with their favorite brand. Those images, whether on t-shirts, photos, or other swag, bond fans to the brand.

For Jack in the Box, the infamous Jack Box Antenna Ball is one of the most popular, if not the most iconic, symbols for the fast food restaurant. At first, that antenna ball appeared on Jack’s convertible. When fans saw that fun car accessory, they wanted one for their own.

Jack Box Antenna Ball, photo provided by Jack in the Box

Starting in 1995, the antenna balls were released. At first, more than 32 million antenna balls were made. The sale proceeds benefited Big Brothers, Big Sisters and corporate sponsors.
Still, the antenna balls really did have a food promotion associated with it.

Originally, this fun accessory was intended to promote the Sourdough Jack. If you aren’t familiar, a Sourdough Jack features a burger topped with Swiss cheese, bacon, tomato, mayonnaise and ketchup. It is served on a toasted Sourdough bread. That combination of tangy, crisp bread with the burger and toppings quickly became a favorite menu item.

While the antenna ball promotion was fun, the Sourdough Jack might have become a hit without the promotion. This type of burger option set Jack in the Box apart from other fast food options. In a way, it was the brand’s choice to find its own niche.

For the most part, Jack in the Box has staked its claim as a big disruptor. From non-traditional fast food pairings and  menu items, like tacos side by side with burgers, this brand sets it own rules. It makes sense that the antenna ball has become part of its branding.

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Do you know a Jack Box Antenna Ball? Is it your way of telling the world that you love Jack in the Box?