Saturday, July 23, 2016

Fifty Years Ago This Week in Wset Rome - 7/25/1966 to 7/31/1966

 Summer is often a lazy time in the South, and this week in 1966 was no exception. Dental groups held meetings, government agencies talked budgets, and ambitious road plans were made (but never actually implemented)... but for most of us, we stayed out of the sun, sat in front of fans or air conditioners to keep as cool as possible, and even went to movies that we didn't particularly care about because the air conditioning was so good. A trip to Candler's Drugstore for a 5¢ one-scoop or 10¢ two-scoop ice cream was always a good way to beat the heat--or, for me, a 25¢ coconut milk shake with a couple of extra drops of coconut flavoring, because Mr. Candler remembered how much I liked coconut.

Rome’s hot summer continued, with daily highs in the mid to upper 90s and hardly any thunderstorms to break the heat.The one major thunderstorm that occurred that week came on Monday, July 25th, and it was so severe that it caused flooding of the creek behind Conn Street on Paris Drive. City officials promised that plans were underway to dredge and clear the creek to reduce flooding (even though some dredging had been done just a few years earlier, with only limited results).
This week in 1966, Coach Paul Kennedy began assembling his North Team for the Georgia High School All-Star Football Classic game, which was schedule for August 4th at Georgia Tech’s Grant Field. Coach Kennedy’s first action was to tap his coaching team, which included Chieftain coaches Nick Hyder and Robert Green, as well as Namon Wiseman from Armuchee. “We’re going to play a passing, kicking, and defensive game,” Coach Kennedy said. “ After looking at the South’s team, I believe we’ll be able to throw against the South’s pass defense easier than we can run against their running defense.” Since rules for the North-South game didn’t allow for alternates to be called up if any players were injured in practice, Coach Kennedy said that his practice sessions would avoid contact work—something that he wasn’t very happy about, since that wasn’t his typical practice strategy at West Rome.

Clearing continued on the Gala Shopping Center site this week in 1966, with grading progressing ahead of schedule due to a relatively dry summer. Developers were hopeful that this would mean that Gala would be able to open for business by the summer or fall of 1967.

Piggly Wiggly had fresh whole fryers for 29¢ a pound, Georgia grown peaches for a dime a pound, and Maxwell House instant coffee for $1.29 a jar. Kroger had ground beef for 45¢ a pound, applesauce for a dime a can, and A 20-pound bag of whit potatoes for 69¢. Big Apple had hen turkeys for 37¢ a pound, Banquet frozen TV dinners for 39¢ a pound, and bell peppers for a dime each. A&P had chuck roast for 37¢ a pound, cantaloupes for 39¢ each, and Campbell’s tomato soup for 15¢ a can. Couch’s had rib steaks for 79¢ a pound, Aristocrat ice milk for 34¢ a half-gallon, and Showboat pork & beans for 19¢ a can.

The cinematic week began with Around the World Under the Sea (with Lloyd Bridges & Shirley Eaton) at the DeSoto Theater; Munster Go Home (with Fred Gwynne & Yvonne DeCarlo) at the First Avenue, and The Trouble With Angels (with Hayley Mills) at the West Rome Drive-In. The midweek switch out brought Lt. Robin Crusoe, USN (with Dick Van Dyke & Nancy Kwan) to the DeSoto Theater and The Wild Angels (with Peter Fonda & Nancy Sinatra) to the First Avenue and the West Rome Drive-In.

The Troggs took number one this week in 1966 with “Wild Thing.” Other top ten hits included “Li’l Red Riding Hood” by Sam the Sham & the Pharaohs (#2); “Summer in the City” by the Lovin’ Spoonful (#3); “The Pied Piper” by Crispian St. Peters (#4); “They’re Coming to Take Me Away Ha-Hah!” by Napoleon XIV (#5); “I Saw Her Again” by the Mamas & the Papas (#6); “Hanky Panky” by Tommy James & the Shondells (#7); “Sweet Pea” by Tommy Roe (#8); “Mother’s Little Helper” by the Rolling Stones (#9); and “Somewhere My Love” by Ray Connie & the Singers (#10).

The Association made their album debut this week in 1966 with And Then… Along Comes the Association, featuring such hits as “Along Comes Mary,” “Cherish,” and “Enter the Young.” Also debuting this week: Tim Hardin’s eponymous first album, which included his signature song “Reason to Believe.”

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