Mem­o­ries of burg­ers, hot rods and a furry minidress

The Covington News - - OPINION -

Here’s the Sa­muel Hay Chronology, as best I can re­mem­ber:

First there was “The Snow Girl,” lo­cated at the tri­an­gle on Floyd and Adams streets across from Hooten’s store and built and owned by Shug Camp­bell.

The lower por­tion of the walls sloped out­ward at the top and was many dif­fer­ent colors of brick, with glass all around and four ser­vice win­dows, two on the front and one on each side. There was no in­side seat­ing. The sign on top was price­less: a huge, about 9-foot tall, girl with a furry minidress, furry boots and a furry cap, seated, hold­ing an ice­cream cone.

Then there was the Buck N’ Kidd Restau­rant/ Drive-In where Stalvey’s is now lo­cated. There was also the Tas­tee Freeze on Wash­ing­ton Street, across from Kitchens Mar­ket. It had a small seat­ing area. Dave, the owner, was a huge ex-pro­fes­sional foot­ball player whose top dish in the kitchen was pizza. I’ve never been able to du­pli­cate the recipe, in­volv­ing a white cheese that was stringy when hot, a bit of ground beef on top, a tiny bit of sauce in the mid­dle, and a skinny crust that was nei­ther crispy or rub­bery.

Then there was The Cow Palace, an old Dutch ar­chi­tec­ture barn, lo­cated on U.S. 278 about where ACS air-con­di­tion­ing ser­vice is now. An­other fa­mous lo­ca­tion for the lo­cal crowd was “Lit­tle Texas,” a huge cow pas­ture with no fenc­ing lo­cated on Richard­son Street just past Ox­ford.

Of course, we had the Strand The­ater, the Hub Drive-In and the Moon- lit Drive-In. The Moon­lit showed the most re­cent movies, but most folks didn’t watch the movies much, any­how, so it didn’t re­ally mat­ter.

I do have an ex­cel­lent mem­ory for stuff. But you know, I re­mem­ber dozens of movies I saw at The Strand, but not a sin­gle one from ei­ther of the drive-ins ... hm­mmm. The burg­ers and fries at both were pretty good.

There was noth­ing frozen be­ing of­fered from any of the restau­rants, un­til the Dairy Queen came to town later. But it wasn’t re­ally fre­quented by the teens be­cause there wasn’t much “park­ing” area and way too much light. ...ha ha ha.

No­tably, ev­ery venue was al­ways high­lighted with lo­cal hot-rod au­to­mo­biles.

And that brings to mind the Var­sity, where all us hot-rod guys would go and “chug” through, time and again. I’m su­per-un­der­whelmed that the film that was done on the Var­sity and is shown on PBS from time to time had only about five sec­onds of the hot rods.

What made the Var­sity was the crowds com­ing in to see the hot rods. I should write them a nasty note.

I re­mem­ber when gas went up from 25 cents a gal­lon to 27 cents a gal­lon. I could not imagine how I was go­ing to be able to work that into my bud­get to drive to At­lanta from Covington ev­ery evening to col­lege.

Sa­muel Hay is a long­time New­ton County res­i­dent and can be reached at chero­kee_s­cott@ya­hoo.com.

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