Mom and Dad’s lives were centered around raising five children. Most of the recreational activities they enjoyed were with the whole family. Once in a while they would go out dancing with other couples on a Friday or Saturday night. There were venues which came to Spokane which they enjoyed individually. Myself, my sister Sharon, or both of us would attend the venues with Mom or Dad.
Mom loved country music. During the 1950’s a lot of the country music stars performed in Spokane. Dad liked music, but didn’t have much interest in taking Mom to see the singers. He would stay home with the kids while myself and/or Sharon went with Mom. These shows were a great adventure for young children. We would sit as close to the front as possible. Mom’s favorite shows were singers who regularly performed at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville. She listened to them on the radio at home and loved seeing them in person. The shows in the 1950’s were much different than the concerts of today. All the seats were good seats. The entertainers communicated and participated with the audiences. There were no booming speakers or light shows. Things were simple and the music was real, as were the performers. We loved attending the shows as much as mom enjoyed them.
Mom watched wrestling on television and took me to a few live wrestling matches. The wrestling was not impressive to me, but it was an evening of entertainment to Mom. It never entered my mind to ruin her evening by giving her my real opinion of the theatrics. It was worth suffering through the wrestling matches to get a good seat at the next country music show with her.
Dad had a real love of hunting, fishing, and wildlife. He belonged to a Sportsman’s Club in Spokane. The club would bring in guest speakers on a regular basis. The speakers were explorers, wildlife experts, authors, and others. They would give a description and slideshow in their area of expertise. He often took me to these presentations with him. We would dress in our Sunday clothes and go to an auditorium or conference room to attend. The speakers normally had informal chat sessions before, during, and after their presentations. These were great adventures for a ten to twelve year old.
Country music and my love of the outdoors remain with me today………but wrestling left long ago.