Fun Running Springs news from 1972

NewspaperI am having so much fun going through old newspapers from the 1960s, 1970s, 1980s and 1990s that I have either published myself or old newspapers people have given me through the years. These papers are “our” history and it’s fascinating and fun.

From 1972: On Armistice Day  a meeting was held by some of the citizens of Running Springs at the Pine Cone Inn (which, I believe is the site of the former Rainbow View Lodge (which of course was called something else before that!) The meeting was held to discuss the possibility of forming a chamber of commerce.

Tentative plans were made to organize a chamber of commerce in the near future, with the idea of trying to get a one-hundred percent membership in the village.

One of the main problems discussed at that meeting was the lack of correct weather information given to people in the valley. It was agreed that a chamber in cooperation with the other chambers in the mountains, could do a great deal toward rectifying this condition.

Temporary officers elected to organize the chamber were: Cy Hoag, Les Mee, John Soos, Walter Holmes and William Mueller. It was felt that permanent officers should be elected by members after the chamber is organized.

It was decided that another meting should be held in the near future, so that a speaker from the County Chamber of Commerce could informal all the people in Running Springs of the benefits derived from such an organization. This is a question of importance to all in the community. The date of the next meeting would be made public as soon as the arrangements can be made for a speaker.

There used to be a delightful store on Hilltop Blvd. on the lower level, called Yesterday’s Olde Tyme Mart. Today the store is Artisans but those of us who remember Yesterday’s have great fond memories of that delightful  business. Located down the stairs the owners featured a candy “bar” so to speak that held many “old-fashioned” types of candy like licorice and many others.

A number of shops existed then including authentic Indian jewelry and unusual decorative handcrafted gifts at “Vail’s Gift Basket.”  “Betty’s Beads and Things (featured jewelry from yesterday’s beads and antiques), “Gypsy Glass” featured authentic Native American jewelry and a glassblower was on the premisis.” “Brenda’s” featured children’s clothing, handmade accessories and toys for tots. “The Art Barn” featured wall hangings and gift items. “Now and then Shop” featured antiques and featured Granny’s Kitchen. “. Sculpturesque featured sculptured pottery and metal sculpting and leather gifts.

In the 1980s fabulous photographer Don Appleton from Green Valley Lake had his studio in one of the shops and he produced a delightful calendar for our local areas. His beautiful large black and white photos of our areas were featured. I did the typesetting for the the dates and special occasions such as holidays. It was quite an adventure and after it was completed I have a hilarious photo of him surrounded by huge black plastic bags filled with the “remnants” left from the completion of that project. Unfortunately, Don never printed another calendar as it was a huge project and wasn’t as successful as he hoped. He is an incredible photographer and his gorgeous black and white shots of our local communities were featured. I loved working with him and owe him so much for his years of support and love. After a terrible period in my life it was Don who taught me to use a new computer so I could continue to put out the newspaper I started and loved so much in the Running Springs, Arrowbear and Green Valley Lake communities. I was the “birth mother” of The Alpenhorn and I ran it for years.

* The 1948 April Fools Dance, sponsored by the Women’s Community Club, was held at the Wagon Wheel Cafe and its theme was “hard-times” so everyone wore their old clothes. They were hosting a big drawing and three radios were given to the winners.

Food? In 1972 there were a lot of local (or close to local) restaurants. Lloyd’s of Running Springs, which carried the slogan “Where Friends Meet Friends” was, of course, “THE” PLACE. The famous restaurant hosted a coffee shop (where Lloyd’s mother fixed incredible goodies and was on hand), an elegant “dinner house” and the cocktail lounge.

The Lake Inn in Green Valley Lake was a great spot in the community. At that time the restaurant was open from Tuesdays through Sundays and every Friday was “Spanish Night.” Although it’s been open and closed several times during the last several decades it’s going great in Green Valley Lake.

John Futala’s “Golden Elk” was going like crazy in Arrowbear. The restaurant/bar was open seen days a week with a full menu from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. each day. They had music and Friday and Saturday they served an after-hours breakfast two  to four a.m.

The Fireside “known as the coziest place in town” was going like crazy and still is. It was, and still is, located above Smiley Corner (near Jensen’s Market).

The Wagon Wheel Cafe was certainly one of the most recognized and frequented restaurants/bars in the community. The location was where the vacant lot is on Hilltop Blvd. (close to the offramp from Hwy. 330). There are pictures of the structure buried with feet of snow but I can see a sign that said Dinner was 95 cents. This was a large building and it served the community in many different ways in addition to being a restaurant/bar. Before the local Rim of the World School District got organized local Running Springs area children would parade through the bar area and go to school in the building. Beside the entryway was a large old wooden wagon wheel from days gone by. I believe that is the same wagon wheel that is at the monument/flagpole area at the terminus of Hwy. 18 and Hilltop Blvd.

The August-September 1972  issue of this fascinating small local “bulletin”shows an absolutely hilarious photo of three local men in short  pinafores, lipstick, bows in their hair, singling lustily into an old microphone.  This trio, composed of Bill Faulkner, Chuck Rea and Bruce Horning (who became the first R.S. fire chief and then first manager of the R.S. Water District. To put it mildly, the photo is hilarious as this “handsome” trio were imitating The Andrews Sisters.

At this time Dutch’s Market and Liquor was a going place for liquors, wine, choice meats, fresh produce, frozen foods and a lot more. The market is still still there, near Toto’s Mexican restaurant on Hwy. 18.

Sleigh Bells, which was a beautiful dress and accessory shop on Hilltop Blvd. (which was next to the laundromat) was hosting a fashion show and it was sponsored by the Woman’s Club of Running Springs. Ski fashions, daytime and evening wear was to be the focus. The models included (you oldies but goodies are going to know some of these names) Nancy Herbst, Yvonne Baker, Mary Wagner, JoAnne Hassett and Nancy Schaufler. The male models were George Pecarovich, Francis Stutz, Richard Herbst and Ron Schaufler. Carol Day handled the tickets, Miriam Weller (who I adored) along with Rene Herbst were in charge of the decorations.

Anybody remember the Masons when they opened a liquor store in the Forest Inn Cafe building in Luring Pines? I’d love to know where that was. I am presuming the Masons were a family, not the organization since it was a liquor store.

In that September 1972 edition the rerouting of the highway through Running Springs caused considerable activity during that past week. Jim Dodge moved his garage to his new location. Several other businesses had to be closed and then re-opened in new locations. I’m not sure if this story involved the “cutoff” off Hwy. 18 into Running Springs or another rerouting of the highway. It could also have been referring to where the overpass bridge is today as you “come into town.” Anybody out there know?

I hope you enjoyed this short “walk down memory lane.” Our mountain history is so interesting and fortunately, I have a lot, lot more information to pass along.

They’ll be lots more of this fun “look back in time.” I find it fascinating and since my family moved up here in 1974 but moved off in the early 1990s I have a lot of newspapers I cherish.

Hope you enjoyed this!





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