MHS Youth Center According to Pete!

Written by Pete Creasey

Paraphrase of my 2005 posting on the MHS ’64 website.

When asked to reminisce a bit about our MHS Youth Center, I started thinking back as to what sticks out in my mind (and perhaps yours, as well).  All memories of the Youth Center are most favorable.

First and foremost, the fabulous malts.  Great big with lots of real ice cream.  I usually opted for the vanilla or strawberry ones and cannot recall ever being less than ecstatic with them; of course, I could handle the calories a whole lot better back in those days.  Most of us these days can’t even think about a malt without gaining pounds.

The jukebox was always playing good tunes at the right (read loud) volume.  Too many good tunes to list, but, for some reason, some of Roy Orbison’s hits stick out in my mind such as “It’s Over” and “Oh Pretty Woman”.  Read about Roy at Roy Orbison.

Or how about Johnny Rivers’s “Maybelline” and “Memphis”.  His intriguing website can be found at Johnny Rivers.

Suffice it to say, the jukebox was loaded with top-of-the-chart songs.

The competitions at the MHS Youth Center were legendary.  The ping pong games were especially brutal as there were a number of outstanding players.  Very, very athletic contests, indeed, with lots of slamming and high energy (and perspiration).

The pool games were a bit more sedate, but, nevertheless, still intense.  I can remember Eddie Hendrix getting angry one time and throwing the cue ball at me (perhaps the reason I recall this is that it knocked a tooth loose…no hard feelings, though, Eddie, if you’re looking in).  The Youth Center manager, Jay Haney, was very good at pool, as I recall.  The pool tables stayed very busy.

Another activity at the MHS Youth Center was the occasional weekend dance.  I particularly remember the dances with The Sparkles.  Here’s  more info on The Sparkles

The bands would set up next to the bar area leaving the rest of the Youth Center for tables, dancing, and whatever else might derive from teenage impulses.

Speaking of the manager of the Youth Center, Jay Haney handled things very well.  And the young man who ran the bar (and made the malts) was especially appreciated.

Remembering all the good times back in those wonderful ’60s, the  MHS Youth Center’s legacy remains intact in our minds as it was a source for wholesome recreation and bonhomie.

An Undramatic but Memorable Christmas in Midland

A Christmas season I can remember was when Cliff Hardwick was living in a Midland bungalow with a good friend of his and mine (whose name I can’t remember right now) and they frequently had parties featuring country and western music.  We’re talking Hank Thompson, Hank Williams, and the like.  These parties were held regardless of mid-week or weekend nights.

The dining room was vacant except for one wall against which there was a stack of Coors beer containers stacked to the ceiling.  This was back when Coors gave a pittance per returned container, if you might recall.  Cliff (and his friend) struck gold with redeeming the volume of those returned containers.

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Woody Gwyn, renowned artist

Submitted by Pete Creasey

I wonder how many people remember Woody Gwyn.  He is a renowned artist with a special talent for painting West Texas landscapes.

I can’t remember how I came to know Woody.  I have lost touch with him and an attempt to reconnect was to no avail. Does anyone know a good source in or around Houston for Woody Gwyn art piece(s)?

Here is an interesting article…

[Quote from]
Gwyn is a graduate of Midland High — Class of 1962 — and for decades, thousands of students have seen Gwyn’s work — whether they realized it or not — as they ascended or descended a staircase on the school’s east side.

Far above the reach of any student or school employee hangs Gwyn’s giant mural of an oil rig at night.

Click Here To Read More

A Special Group – Born Between 1930 – 1946

Submitted by Pete Creasey

Thanks, Pete, for sharing the best of times!

Today, they range in ages from 75 to 90.  Are you or do you know someone “still here”?    

Interesting Facts for you.

You are the smallest group of children, born since the early 1900s. 

You are the last generation, climbing out of the depression, who can remember the winds of war and the impact of a world at war which rattled the structure of our daily lives for years. 

You are the last to remember ration books for everything from gas to sugar to shoes to stoves. 

You saved tin foil and poured fat into tin cans. 

You saw cars up on blocks because tires weren’t available. 

You can remember milk being delivered to your house early in the morning and placed in the “milk box” on the porch. 

You are the last to see the gold stars in the front windows of grieving neighbors whose sons died in the War. 

You saw the ‘boys’ home from the war, build their little houses. 

You are the last generation who spent childhood without television; instead, you imagined what you heard on the radio. 

With no TV until the 50’s, you spent your childhood “playing outside”. 

There was no little league.  There was no city playground for kids. 

The lack of television in your early years meant, that you had little real understanding of what the world was like.  

On Saturday afternoons, the movies gave you newsreels sandwiched in between westerns and cartoons.  

Telephones were one to a house, often shared (party lines) and hung on the wall in the kitchen (no one cares about privacy).   

Typewriters were driven by pounding fingers, throwing the carriage and changing the ribbon. 

INTERNET’ and ‘GOOGLE’ were words that did not exist. 

Newspapers and magazines were written for adults and the news was broadcast on your radio in the evening.  As you grew up, the country was exploding with growth. 

The Government gave returning Veterans the means to get an education and spurred colleges to grow.  Loans fanned a housing boom.

Pent up demand coupled with new installment payment plans opened many factories for work. 

New highways would bring jobs and mobility.

The Veterans joined civic clubs and became active in politics.  

The radio network expanded from 3 stations to thousands. 

Your parents were suddenly free from the confines of the depression and the war, and they threw themselves into exploring opportunities they had never imagined. 

You weren’t neglected, but you weren’t today’s all-consuming family focus.  They were glad you played by yourselves until the street lights came on. They were busy discovering the post war world. 

You entered a world of overflowing plenty and opportunity; a world where you were welcomed, enjoyed yourselves and felt secure in your future though depression poverty was deeply remembered. 

Polio was still a crippler.  

You came of age in the 50s and 60s.  You are the last generation to experience an interlude when there were no threats to our homeland. The second world war was over and the cold war, terrorism, global warming, and perpetual economic insecurity had yet to haunt life with unease.  

Only your generation can remember both a time of great war, and a time when our world was secure and full of bright promise and plenty.  You grew up at the best possible time, a time when the world was getting better… 

You are “The Last Ones.” 

More than 99 % of you are either retired or deceased, and you feel privileged to have “lived in the best of times!”