Saturday, June 11, 2011

11 June 1957 “Dishwashing Fun with Cup Characters and Officer Joe Helps Teens with Soapbox Boat Racing”

thegossips These two ‘gossips’ are the handy work of Dr. Lehman Wendall, a Minnapolis, Minn., dentist. He, like many American Husbands, gets roped in…er I mean he Loves to help with the nightly chore of washing the dishes.

He added some entertainment to the chore by creating these interesting characters:


soapboxboat1 Officer Joe, pictured here with his eager and attentive ‘students’ has brought hard work and team work to the youths of Freeport Long Island, N.Y. They are having a wonderful time competing in Soapbox Water Derby, invented and aided by officer Joe.

 soapboxboat4 “In Freeport, Long Island, N.Y., and in several other nearby communities, youngsters these hot days are having the time of their lives competing in the nation’s only sopabox water derby. More important than that, they are racing boats of their own making and built with their own money. They owe it all to a 34-year-old Freeport cop, Joe Romeika, and an idea he had three years ago while covering his beat.

It seems that on that day officer Officer Joe chanced upon a group of teen-agers standing along the water front in Freeport, one of the country’s leading speedboat racing centers, watching some sportsman as they roared around the harbor tuning up their craft. Joe saw the look of longing in the kid’s faces. Each of these boys', in his mind, was in one of those boats, racing. And it was here that Joe had his great idea. “Whouldn’t you fellos like to have boats of your own?” he asked them. “A race of your own?”soapboxboat3”Sure!” they chorused. “But How?”

Joe gave them the blueprint” Build their own boats and have their own races. But Joe did more than talk. He helped them get odd jobs-working in boatyards, running errands, selling papers-to get money to build boats, which cost about $50 each. He got boat builders to supply simple designs and helped the boys buy secondhand outboard motors to be reconditioned. He also found them a shop in which to work. Today, over 40 youngsters, ranging in ages from 10 to 18, are in the Freeport group, and this summer are competing in 12 meets all over Long Island against teams in other towns, which have picked up Joe’s original idea.soapboxboat5  The kids are tickled to death with theri new sport, but happiest of all is Joe. he has been a cop for 7 years, and in addition to the soapbox water derby, is director fo the Freeport Police Boys Club, with a membership of 640 youngsters. Joe had no particular experience with boats when he started the water derby, but he has learned along with the boys and now is quite an expert.soapboxboat6 soapboxboat7

These news stories were brought to you from 1951. It is nice to see a story involving teens and police with a positive slant. To know that someone in authority was looking to youths as potential adults with abilities. I am not sure if such things occur today. Though I watch no current news and still read very little modern news, except in relation to a post, I cannot say. I do know that before 1955 when I did watch TV news (if you could call it that) was simply scare tactics and drama. Even a fluff piece would be more about how bad or horrible something was or what was going to happen if we didn’t do this or how this or that is someone else’s fault. Even the News wants to responsibility for its actions like many a modern citizen.

I seem to recall, back in the 80’s when I was younger, there would always be a cute fluff piece in the evening news. That was when news happened at a specific time each day for an hour or half an hour, no 24 hour news programs filled with ‘the latest scandal’. It seemed there was always a positive story about a local, or even someone getting a kitten out of a tree. We do need some perspective that we can trust and want to help our fellow man, don’t you think? Maybe I am wrong and this is still represented, as I said, I am still fairly unplugged from the modern world except when I research and that is more than enough for me each day.

I hope all of you have a lovely day. It is raining here and therefore will be busy indoors this weekend.

Happy Homemaking and I hope you get a little ‘silver lining’ fluff piece in your day, in case there is any dramatic ‘breaking news’ going on somewhere in the world.

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