A bunch of the Class of ’66 folks who came to Cape for their 70th Birthday Party reunion (because lots of them turned 70 in 2018), were hardcore Capaha Park Pool Rats (a description coined by Terry Hopkins).
They thought they’d take advantage of being in town to congregate at Jack Rickard’s house at the base of what used to be the Mississippi River traffic bridge.
Pool Rat Memories
Just about the time the pool was razed, I asked some of the former lifeguards and swim instructors to tell me what they remembered of their swimming days in the middle and late 1960s.
Many of the pictures in this gallery will be on exhibit at the Cape Girardeau County History Center across from the courthouse in Jackson. The museum is open Monday through Saturday from 10 to 4. The exhibit will be up until around the end of October.
Some of the prints are available for purchase there.
Click on any of the photos to make it larger, then use your arrow keys to move around.
Wife Lila and some of her friends threw together an impromptu 50th class reunion in 2016. They realized that most of them are turning 70 years old in 2018, so it was a good time to have a 70th Birthday Party.
Marilyn Maevers Miller of Charleston and the Class of 66 Lunch Bunch handled the local logistics and provided excellent eats.
The classmates gathered at an outdoor pavilion in South County Park Friday night. The photo shows about 50 attendees, and even more might have missed being in the group shot. Click on the image to make it large enough to see faces. Anyone who appears in the group shot above has my express permission to reproduce it for personal use.
Singing broke out
Bill Jacqie Jackson brought his karaoke equipment from his South Florida post-retirement job, and attracted an active group of “singers” toward the end of the evening.
The good thing about attending a group 70s Birthday Party is that all of the people who would yell, “Turn that music down!” are AT the party.
A cold front moved through on Saturday, so Bob Ward offered up space in the Elk’s Club to get the group out of rain and cold winds.
This print of 1964 or 1965 Central High School football players wasn’t great when it was new, and time has faded it even more. Sylvester Johnson is third from the left in the back row.
Syl was one of the best athletes Central ever produced. After Principal Dallas Albers noticed the star player eying his suspenders during an assembly, he shot him a deal: he would award his suspenders to Syl at the homecoming dance if the Tigers won their homecoming game against Sikeston. Albers was so sure Syl was going to come through that he showed up at the dance wearing both a belt and suspenders so his pants wouldn’t fall down after paying off his obligation to Syl.
That’s Bill / Jacqie Jackson on the far left in the front row. I’m pretty sure I recognize some of the other guys, but I’ll let you tell me for sure who they are so I don’t have to run corrections.
Those blue marks
Those blue marks on the top and right margins are crop marks where the sports editor decided to tighten up the photo, probably because he wanted to be able to run the faces larger.
A couple of years ago, I hooked up with Don Gordon, my old Missourian mentor who confessed that he leaned on me whenever it came to doing page layouts. “I watched John Blue mark up pictures. He almost always put a crop mark on them. It might be just to whittle off an eighth of an inch, but he seemed to feel he hadn’t done his job unless he had touched the photo in some way. When I got a picture, I found myself doing the same thing. I didn’t know what I was doing, but I’d always take a little off the edges.”
“I knew that, Don. That’s why I always printed my photos with a little ‘air’ around them so that by the time you and jBlue got finished, the picture would be just right.”
For 36 days a year (37 during Leap Year), Wife Lila and I are the same age.
I won’t tell you what that age is this year, but if we once believed that you couldn’t trust anyone over 30, we are more than twice as untrustworthy as we were when we said that.
One thing about it, she can sure blow out a candle quickly and leave not so much as a tendril of smoke behind. Neighbor Bill/Jacqie provided the cake; the boys took her out for dinner and gave her a Fitbit to document that she’s still moving, and I got her a coffee table art book on The Florida Highwaymen.