Tulsa TV Memories Guestbook 193
TTM main | What's new on TTM? | GB Archive
Little Kings at Boston Avenue Market after work (okay, we were a bit underage...) with Donna Williams and Fat Tuesday playing Stevie Wonder's "I Wish."
Actually saw mention of Bob McRoberts, who
my parents used to go hear play piano all the time. He and his wife (I think
her name was Linda) came over a couple of times and I remember Bob playing
our piano at a birthday party for my mother. Uncle Zeb with the 8's the Place
slogan. We borrowed that slogan for the '78 yearbook at Hale and had our
yearbook staff photo taken in the news studio. (Do I see one of your regular
posters on this
page? ) Anyway, thanks for this site.
What's going to be done with the Mayo Meadow property after it's torn down? I knew it was slated to go...only a store or two still open last time I was in town. No telling how many hours my mother spent in Jack and Jill's buying clothes for the grandkids. Used to be a small Godfather's Pizza in there back in the 70s. Are there still any Godfathers' left?
Rambling...overdose of memories.
Are Shasta beverages still being sold in Tulsey? I was humming their 30-year-old jingle in my head for reasons unknown today. Old guys do that.
They were Zeb sponsors and no one but 8 ran their ads. But I can't remember if Dad's Root Beer or was it A&W was another Zeb sponsor - can anyone help?
Are they runnin' the painfully sappy Johnny Carraba & nephew or uncle
ads for Carraba's on Tulsey radio like here on the East Coast? I always turn
them off. I wonder if it is a family chain or what? In DC on so many street
corners, we know that Baja Fresh is really a Wendy's sister outfit (Tim Horton's
up North, too) and Chipotle is a McDonald's venture...Pete Abrams said he
heard Goldie's in Tulsa is now owned by Barry Switzer! Will the wonders ever
I went to OKC today and while we drove past all the big box stores around the mall, there were moments where I forgot that I was not in Tulsa anymore. I think we'll be remembered for being the first culture to tear down perfectly usable structures to be replaced by other structures. It is becoming an architectural myth of Sisyphus as buildings explode and chase us down the hill, only to be rolled back up again (and again and again )
Years from now people will be devoting websites to saving the last
"Med-X Drug Store, the drug store that's close to you.
I also saw that the Safeway at 11th and Denver was demolished to build an Office Depot. When I first got out of law school, in 2000, I would go out on my 12th floor balcony of Liberty Towers and take in the view from downtown. I could see the parking lot of Safeway, as well as the QT at 15th.
I moved to Dallas in 2003, but I still have those memories of watching the interesting happenings in the parking lot of the old Safeway, after hours.
By the way, anyone remember Marge McNearney's in Utica Square? My Yenta mother used to drag my little brother and me there to shop for clothes when we were little. While she was picking out clothes for us, we were checking out the Corgi cars in the stairway. It was always our bribe with her. If we tried on clothes, she had to buy us a car. Otherwise, we would threaten to roll around on the ground and get our short-sets dirty...
I hear it later became the "Children's Collection."
I remember back in the day seeing that monster as we'd go by it on I-44 and thinking how cool it would be to take that sucker on.
The thrills were self-explanatory about the ride but the drawbacks, as I recall were the fact that it seemed like they opened the place and didn't bother cleaning the construction site very well. Rough concrete, rocks and dirt had to be negotiated from the landing pool to the steps going up.
The steps to the top numbered in the thousands and were at an impossible
angle. But hey, when you're 11, you can deal. I remember when the old concrete
one at Admiral and Memorial opened too.
I am happy to report that unlike its Tulsa counterpart (since deceased), it has recently had a facelift to return to its former glory...and it was very much a step back in time. I had a very enjoyable lunch in the cartoon theater...Elmer Fudd lives on. Like Casa Bonita, it has gone through several owners, but the current staff seems to be taking good care of the old gal.
Edwin, having worked with you and Sherry back in the early 80s, I fondly
recall listening to your Channel 8 stories over a big mug of Pizza Hut beer.
I am so glad that there is now a website to preserve it all for posterity.
In the early 1980s, a good friend of mine named Ron Bolinger was working at the station, and talked the programming director there into letting me intern. As it turned out, it was a life-changing experience, and I became a regular DJ shortly after my graduation from high school in 1984.
At the time, KTOW was an AM outfit playing country and western, with a daytime emphasis on the "older stuff" (i.e. Patsy Cline, Bob Wills, Roy Acuff, Ernest Tubb). (Ron and I and a few of the other DJs often secretly called our format "stone age country".) When we weren't playing the classics, we occasionally mixed in contemporary stuff ranging from Alabama and the Oak Ridge Boys to artists who would later be considered pop or rock "crossovers" like Olivia Newton John and the Eagles.
KTOW also carried a great deal of sports. I spent a lot of time punching carts during the commercial breaks for the Kansas City Royals Baseball and Sandite (Charles Page High School) football. We also broadcast Kentucky Derby race results.
The oddest thing about KTOW's format, however, was that for a brief while, we became a satellite repeater for a Chicago pop station. This posed some interesting challenges for those of us working at the engineering board. How does one gracefully segue between "Take Me Back to Tulsa" and "Do You Really Want to Hurt Me" by Boy George? It was a very weird time for the station's format, but it was also part of its uniquely small town charm.
Of course, the peculiarities of the station's format also allowed for us dee-jays to express ourselves in unique ways. Ron Bolinger and I irregularly produced a series of weird tales radio dramas called "Uncharted Regions," and we aired them on and off between 1984 and 1989. The first was "Shadow of the Bulldog Man," a War of the Worlds-inspired broadcast based on a local Sand Springs legend. The show climaxed with a simulated attack on station DJ Mark Maxey, and we shut off the transmitter for fifteen minutes. (We thankfully didn't start any riots, but we did get a phone call or two asking about Mr. Maxey's well-being.)
Even when we weren't doing full-fledged dramas, Ron and I had a flair for weirdness. My early Sunday morning program was called "Chickenbusters" and featured phoned in reports of alien chickens and other audio gags. For the midnight weather report, Ron and I would also occassionally "broadcast" from somewhere exotic, so the local Sand Springs weather would be read from locales like Transylvania (complete with howling wolfs and bats) and politically questionable locales like Belfast (accompanied with machine gun fire and explosions). Mark Maxey, who had helped with the original "Bulldog" broadcast was also known for his shenanigans, but his on-air joke about Oral Roberts later got him booted from the station.
Of course, Ron, Mark, and I weren't the only interesting characters working at KTOW. Our program director was a very good DJ named Mike Graham who also happened to be completely blind. Every knob, button, and record in the station was labelled in Braille, a factor which always surprised visitors to the station. Another DJ owned a record store in Crystal City, and frequently sported a full Elvis pompadour.
In 1987 I officially moved off to finish my journalism degree at the University of Oklahoma, but maintained my connections with the station as Ron and I continued to produce "Uncharted Regions" on our own. On Halloween of 1989 we aired our last episode, "October Harvest", on a very different KTOW. In the years while I was away, KTOW had changed ownership and direction. It went from an AM only C&W station to an AM/FM outfit playing alternative/indie rock. It was still gloriously consistently inconsistent, which was one of the things I had loved about the station when I first ran across it.
Ironically, it was the scripts I'd written for our strange little radio dramas
that later opened the door to a career in computer game design. As a result,
I still feel like KTOW is with me, and sometimes wish I could go back and
sit behind the mike just one more time. It's a great Tulsa memory.
Didn't a tornado take out the coaster in or around maybe mid-1970s? I remember driving to a park outside Tulsa and seeing the tracks go up and the rest was blown away.
If it wasn't Skyline, can anyone tell me what it was? I've wondered for awhile
if it was Skyline or I've been mixed up.
OK, it's coming back to me now.
Here's an action shot from Guestbook 129 of the giant metal slide near the old Oertle's, now Clear Channel's building.
And Casa Bonita... I lucked out, I guess, because I never ate there. Many elementary school birthday parties were held there in the early 80s, though. We mostly ended up at Ken's and Mazzio's.
The new Skyline pages were featured on Boing Boing this afternoon; hits are so high, the server has bogged down and may be a bit slow again tomorrow. This Guestbook is on a different server, so it should be fine.
Maybe this means we won't be seeing M*A*S*H 10 times a day anymore.
Since the WB aims at a younger demographic, that's probably a good idea. I've been M*A*S*Hed-out for quite awhile myself.
When I came home, my wife took one look at me and shouted "MY GOD, YOU LOOK
LIKE SLINGBLADE!!!!" I quit wearing cowboy hats on the bandstand during that
time because they didn't quite sit on my head too well.
Never again. What's that old saw? "Never trust a cock-eyed barber"? 'Tis
true, 'tis true, much to my chagrin...
Roy, you might want to "head" over to Dewey the Barber at 21st and Garnett. He used to (and may still) have a hand-painted wooden sandwich board sign out front, "Short Hair Specialist", adorned with a sketch kind of like this, but not quite as artistic. He could probably even that up for you.
And when was it started? Is it still there?
It's really entertaining to sit there eating your chicken fried steak with
the train chugging around the room over your head.
Steven Soderbergh was exec producer but Clooney wrote and directed this period
piece. Great movie and a fattened George Clooney is something to see as the
late Fred Friendly. Frank Langella is good as the late former CBS founder/owner
Bill Paley. A very good cast and Sen. McCarthy is himself on film and "kinies"
- so no actor was needed.
Regarding highway 66, the Travel Channel last night had a bit about the road, including a lengthy piece on Cain's. It was probably a rerun and everyone but me had seen it years ago; however, it was new to me as was the information that the ghost of Bob Wills is supposed to haunt the joint.
If someone encounters the shade of Johnny Lee, let us know.
We've heard directly from Elmer the Clown (aka Noel Confer) of the Uncle Hiram show.
It will be interesting to see how many of the people who have mourned the passing of Casa Bonita will actually show up when the mock 2 version opens (the same goes for Starship). I like the way some posters see it as a conspiracy to set off their saliva glands at the ringing of the bell (kind of like when New Coke was announced in the 1980s and old Coke was supposed to disappear forever). The only mistake the Casa Bonita Corporation made was that they should have stayed open through the fair; that would have been nostalgic. Tulsans are the only people conditioned to relax after walking around the fair all day by standing in line for an hour to eat sub-standard faux Mexican food.
I havent heard anything about the Metro closing, but from what Ive read, I understood it to mean that The University will be taking over that whole section of 11th street. I always found it odd that the Grande entrance to TU was from 6th and Delaware which, of course, no one ever sees unless they are leaving Starship and heading north, or they are on their way to student housing (or both).
Will TU be the only higher education organization directly on Route 66?
It's done and in fact, you can plug in "Tube Poker" on Google or other search engines and find it and news stories about it popping up all over the place.
You can see a nifty little, fast-moving trailer about the movie either through
my website GeorgeTomek.com which takes
you to the "Tube Poker" website or you can go to the movie website directly
which is TubePoker.com. As Woody Allen might
say the movie's website tells you "everything you ever wanted to know about
Tube Poker, but were afraid to ask." The only thing that is available currently
for viewing is the trailer but, believe me, the rest of it is very interesting
and packs a helluva wallop in the 15:00 it runs. Hope you enjoy it.
If you'd like to be notified when Abandoned Tulsa is available and how to
obtain a copy, send an email.
"Casa Bonita will close its doors forever on 9/30/05. What we aren't going to tell you until 10/2/05 is that it's going to reopen under a new name with the same food, staff, management and ambiance!"
Sorry, Mike. I'm not trying to start trouble by saying this. I just feel like we all got "taken advantage of" in a way and it makes me feel bad. I mean, I'm glad everything but the name is going to be the same. I just kinda feel like we all got lied to, if you get my drift.
Anyway...rant over...pass the sopapillas and the honey please. This old
curmudgeon needs some sweetening up...!
After nearly eleven years...I am moving BBSN to a new Tulsa radio home! Beginning Saturday night, October 8th at 8 p.m., we will be on the air at Public Radio 89.5 FM, KWGS at the University of Tulsa (NPR).
Not only will BBSN be live to the area but since Public Radio 89.5 streams their air signal, we will take the show to a world audience! Check us out every Saturday evening, Central time, 8 to 10 p.m. Sometimes we will be live, sometimes the show will be recorded, but always with an email link of: BigBand@kwgs.org. What a thrill to join my long-time friend, John Wooley, on the radio. (John hosts "Swing on This!" at 7 p.m. each Saturday evening.)
I worked at KWGS between my years at KVOO AM & FM and going to RSU Broadcasting in 1993. So, it just feels right!
Thanks to some wonderful listeners who have supported BBSN all these years. Thanks to my bride, Diana, for being so patient with my Saturday night schedule and certainly to all the gang at Public Radio 89.5: Rich, Frank, Casey, Michelle, Brad and certainly the golden-voiced Ed Dumit.
I want to thank everyone at Rogers State University for allowing me to move BBSN to 89.5. I am the station manager for RSU-Radio and since late March I have been serving as the interim general manager for KRSC-TV 35 (Cox Cable 19. We've been streaming 91.3 FM, now called: Real College Radio, since 1997. So, I KNOW what the global stream of a radio show can mean.
So, let me tell you...I look forward to Saturday night and hitting our theme song, "Theme from Route 66" by Nelson Riddle!!
See you Saturday night October 8th, at 8 (Central time) on Public Radio 89.5! Big Band Saturday Night...continues on Tulsa radio!!
As we always say...Let's boogie!
Having these two shows back-to-back is great news for Tulsa radio fans.
He has quite a bit of passion for his film project. When he first told me about it last year, I did not know who Bobo was, but his enthusiasm for this film and its intriguing premise, made me a fan. I am glad to see such things happening.
Thanks for the extra info, Deric.
Coman's has been mentioned here several times, but it no longer exists.
Rumor doth have it that the brains behind the reopening of CB in Tulsa under the new name (Casa Viva?) is same guy that owns the Burger Street franchises here in T-Town. I guess us hungry folks and the Food Critics will have to wait with baited breath until the new place opens. Although, honestly, IMO as long as the honey and the sopapillas are still there, they could be serving SOS and I'd STILL go.
Another rumor...one that has me and the Mrs. concerned... Is it true that
The Metro Diner is going to shut down and/or move?? Say it ain't so, Joe...say
it ain't so!! First CB...then Starship...and now Metro?? NOOOOO!!!
Now, what will I do with all these little bitty black armbands I got for
the bees that made the honey for the sopapillas?
After all our wailing and teeth-gnashing in that Guestbook, it turns out Casa Bonita is not disappearing, but transforming into Casa Viva, under the original Bonita management. The unique decor will remain intact, and the food is to improve, so there will be a different and better reason for teeth-gnashing.
Tim Oliver, owner of low-powered KLOT-TV in Tulsa in the later 90s, checked in from down under.
Does the creator of "The West Wing", Aaron Sorkin, mention Tulsa in his scripts for a reason? Does anyone remember KRAV-FM running "Jive Talkin'" into the ground on April Fool's Day, 1977? Does anyone have a June 1946 Tulsa Downtowner magazine? All these questions were posed, none have been answered yet.
The Tulsa State Fair is here. New page(s) coming on Skyline Park in Jenks. Wanda Baker, former dispatcher for the TPD, is reading her way through the Guestbook Archive and sharing the recollections stirred up in the process.