Dec 16, 2013

Does Anyone Remember the Swank?

Commentary from the Facebook Page - Click to see.

Growing up in Mt. Greenwood in the late fifties and sixties.

More and more people are reconnecting on Facebook. Come on in.  No one will bight. Or if they do we will make them do pushups.

Someone...anyone....remember "The Swank"?
Like ·  ·  · Stop Notifications · November 30 at 6:50pm
  • Norman Rick Crack The Whip! 
  • Maryann Horejs-Decker Saturday's....I loved skating.
  • Norman Rick Most of my friends & I spent many a Saturday night at the Oak Lawn Roller Rink---it was nowhere's near as intimidating as the Swank. Lots of older couples went there, too. Had a great organist---ALL SKATE!!  COUPLES ONLY.................
  • Maryann Horejs-Decker It was intimidating! I was only allowed to go in the late mornings. I didn't attend Morgan Park HS, so I missed out on a lot of things after graduation in 59. There were 11 of us that went on to CVS. Me and 10 guys. I majored in Advertising and Fine Arts and they had an awesome program.
  • Bonnie Funk McCaffrey I loved the Swank on Saturday mornings....and The Oak Lawn Rink on Friday nights. I remember when the tornado took the rink down sometime in the early/mid 60's. What I remember most about the Swank was having to skate down a slope into the bathroom. I nearly crashed every time!
  • Ronald Veenstra Ahhh, yes. One of my main hangouts, only lived a block away.
  • Tom Greaney I think the Tornado hit in 67 my senior year at Marist.
  • Maryann Horejs-Decker April 21st, 1967. My brother lived in Hometown and my Dad had to walk through 2 miles of destruction to make sure they were all ok. It's was unimaginable. Two houses away were leveled.
  • Norman Rick I had a friend from Oak Lawn who skated there a few times a week, so they let him help with the search through the rubble---he uncovered a teenage girl's leg with her skate still on her foot. My wife to be lived in Hometown---her Mom & Dad had to ship out the 5 kids to various relatives all over the city for many weeks, until the house was rebuilt. Her high school was decimated (95th & SW Highway.)
  • Norman Rick Still there after all these years---160th & Pulaski................supposedly a Marist drug dealer owns it now?? Kappas?? Now you can either eat yer hot dog or smoke it! BWAAHAAHAA!! 
  • Bill McCarthy Yes the Swank was a real Swanky joint. Its a shame they closed it. I learned to Skate there on Saturday mornings and have loved skating since, and still do. Love skating around the parks and lakes in the Spring, Summer, and fall. More fun then jogging or fast walking. The rinks are still fun on Adult nights.
  • Norman Rick And ice skating at McKiernan & MG Parks was always fun too---I hated when February came, and the ice started melting---you'd almost kill yerself, yet you still had to get that ONE last skate of the season in. I remember lots of the boys would bring their snow shovels up to the parks & shovel the rinks so they could play hockey. Once again---ah, for the good old days---SIGH.......................
  • Tom Greaney My brother and me were lucky to have a dad who let us freeze the back yard every year. We had more fun playing hockey with the neighbors. My dad would be out there with the hose at 5AM before he went to work. Only bad part was all the basement windows I had to replace because of pucks heading the wrong way!. My neighbor Hank Radius at Chicago Hardware had a open account with me and my brother John.
  • Norman Rick Tom---too bad you guys didn't get some cheap pieces of plywood & temporarily cover the glass windows with them. I used to love it when Mr. Brujus would flood his vacant lot just east of the Doyle's residence. Skating with Mary McNeil & Billy Radius & Dennis & Gayle, etc. Good times.......................
  • Ronald Veenstra Great stories. Still have my skates and case but don't anymore. I should though.
    December 4 at 5:40am via  · Like · 1
  • Iris Bernard Hung out at Swank from 5th grade to 10th grade (until it was taken over by blacks then shut down). Used to skate with a guy named Edgar Krebs from MG. and a guy named Paul Love from Blue Island! I loved that roller rink - I had so much fun and a great social life there!
  • John Wason I reckon water was a lot cheaper back in the Good Old Days.
  • Mike Schoder Dinnerville's had a large back yard too but they never flooded it. Just put a big pool back there and filled it during the summer.
  • Mike Schoder How often did everyone bowl at MG lanes on 111th St or Maplewood lanes in Beverly (before MG was built?)
  • Norman Rick MG (Higgins) all the time; Maplewood, a few times a year. Heck, for me that was a no-brainer---I lived at 10731 Lawndale & Higgins was 3 blocks due south. I was soooooooo proud of my black bowling shoes with the white soles---those rental green & red shoes were tooooooooooooooooooo nasty!!! YIKES!!!
  • Tom Greaney I bowled for years at the bowling Alley next to the BRANDING IRON on 103rd in two leagues a week -had a pretty good average of 183.
  • Norman Rick Tom---I think you are a bit "CORN-fuzed". The Arena Lanes was in a shopping center at the NE corner of 103rd & Cicero, connected to a banquet restaurant called Halleran's---they even shared the same washroom---people would put on a suit, go into the bo...See More
  • Tom Greaney Yes I guess my "SENIOR" moments do catch up with me once in a while. It's been over 30 years since I lived in Chicago.
  • Norman Rick That is NO excuse, kind sir! HAHAHAHAHA!!!
  • Ronald Veenstra Wow, I remember some of those places. So what is there now, vacant lots??
  • Maryann Horejs-Decker It was sad to see Kiddy Land torn down. My Grandpa and Dad did all the brick work. My Dad worked on the miniature golf area...built the huge fountain. The plumbers forgot to complete all the underground work so it never had any water. Grandpa did all t...See More
  • Norman Rick No Ron---new businesses. They tore down the original Coral Theater and built the new Colonial S & L (95th & Cicero)---then they tore down the new Colonial S & L & built a mini-mall with a Walgreens. Just like at 111th & Kedzie (NE corner), they tore do...See More
  • Norman Rick I hated that loooooooong bus ride to Rainbow, but the beach itself was AWESOME---a great place to meet chicks. Calumet Beach at 103rd sucked---the beach was mostly mud & weeds, whereas Rainbow was ALL sand. The good old days.
  • Maryann Horejs-Decker Kresge's and Ben Franklin on the north side of 111th. There was a yarn store and one that just carried nylon stockings...NOT pantyhose. Mort's Rexall Drugs that had a fountain. Martell's furniture. Mt. Greenwood Bank. Dodge Drugs. Steinway's where we would go to keep warm waiting for the bus. I miss that kind of life.
  • Ronald Veenstra Great report. As they say, life goes on. Better than the conditions in Detroit..
  • Maryann Horejs-Decker The original Traverso's on Kedzie. One of the brother's (John) was a typing teacher at CVS. So, I would see him a CVS and then walking home from the bus, I would wave at him while he was working at the Pizza House.
  • Carlo Tozi The Swank was at 111 & Western , I skated there for about a year, 1959. I didn't like the pillars in the middle of the skating floor. I skated at Oak Lawn Roller Rink about 3 or 4 times a week for years , it was much better.
  • Ed Barkowski Maryann Horejs-Decker You mentioned Ben Franklin. Where do you remember it being?
  • Craig Harlan Hullinger
    Staying in Touch - the only site to remember is our blog. Check it out periodically to see what is going on with our 60 something MPHS crowd.
  • Rick Baiker Sure do. Every Saturday morning for lessons, and then skate all day. Loved the snack bar.
  • Maryann Horejs-Decker Ed Barkowski it was on 111th- NW of Kedzie by Martell's Furniture store. The other one was on 111th NE of Kedzie by Ray's Jewelry. I would by a new handkerchief for $.10 cents. Now they are $5 in all the antique shops.
  • Ed Barkowski Thank you. That's what I thought
  • Craig Harlan Hullinger Photo of the Swank
    Staying in Touch - the only site to remember is our blog. Check it out periodically to see what is going on with our 60 something MPHS crowd.
  • Norman Rick I remember my fave MG 5 & 10 was Sunshine's Dimestore---north side of 111th---2 doors west of Kedzie---much older than the "new" Woolworth's. Best toy store ever!! I sure do wish I could recall MG ever having a Ben Franklin??? Can not picture it??? May...See More
  • Ed Barkowski I'm one year older than you. Ben Franklin was there when I was a kid.
  • Maryann Horejs-Decker The A&P was not torn down. Woolworth used the same building and then took over a small store next to it to expand east. I worked in Woolworth's in 1962 aside from growing up and getting the nickel cokes.
  • Norman Rick When I say "torn down", that is just a matter of speech. Technically you are correct. But the new Woolworth's (at least the interior) bore absolutely NO resemblance to the old A & P with the danky smell & those creaky wooden floors--a very antiquated b...See More
  • Ed Barkowski That's where Ben Franklin was also I guess
  • Norman Rick Ed---this "argument" has been ongoing (sorta) in this Group for about 2 years. I can NOT prove the existence of either a Ben Franklin or a Sunshine 5 & 10 in 1950's Mt. Greenwood---I have been doing hours of intensive research on BOTH via Google. All I...See More
  • Jeannette O'Donnell If I recall correctly, the Ben Franklin was on the north side of 111th St, 2 or 3 business doors west of Kedzie. Probably the business east of that furniture store with the gravel parking lot.
    Did they have 2 doors on the front of the store? An entrance door and exit door?
  • Norman Rick Sunshine 5 & 10 was exactly 2 stores WEST of Kedzie on the north side of 111th street. There was a corner restaurant (NW corner of 111th & Kedzie) on the east side of Sunshine & a Martell furniture store on the west side of Sunshine Five & Dime. These ...See More
  • Jeannette O'Donnell It's got to be the same store then. More than likely Sunshine was replaced by Ben Franklin. It was a neat little 5 & 10. 
    I'm straining my brain here, but as I recall it was really overstocked with stuff or it appeared that way because the store was small.
    Palos Heights had a really nice Ben Franklin up until about 5 years ago. Man, I miss that store.
  • Maryann Horejs-Decker Ben Franklin was east of Kedzie on the north side of 111th. It never stood out and said here I am. Very nondescript little place. I still have a doll from BF. It had small amounts of everything, nothing compared to the newer one's that came out later i...See More
  • Eileen Murphy Abbey Swank Roller Rink?? 111th by Western??
  • Norman Rick The Swank later became a Jewel-Osco for many years.
  • Bill McCarthy Eileen Murphy Abbey. R U sure? Is that your final answer? Could it have been a bit south of 111th on Western? Now that I thought of that.. When did the swimming pool and park house, and all that stuff at Kennedy park get put in there? After the Swank closed? The winner to this question; could possibly win an all expense paid; dream vacation; to the most exotic place their wild imagination can dream up.
  • Bonnie Funk McCaffrey I remember riding my bike from MG to Kennedy Park when I was still in grade school, so it was there before 1957, when I graduated from MG school. Do I win? lol
  • Bonnie Funk McCaffrey My husband wants me to ask if anyone knows Bill Kamper (graduated with me from MG grade school in Jan of 1957)? My husband graduated from MG in June of 1956.
  • Janet Quillin Blythe I am related to a Bill kamper!!! So is Gloria Kamper I think!!!
  • Norman Rick Y'all sound like a bunch of "Happy Kampers" ta me!!  I bet they used to have Kemper's Insurance before they bellied up a few years ago?? HAHAHAHAHA!!!
  • John Wason Kemper is gone??? 
  • Bonnie Funk McCaffrey Janet, my husband would really like to get in touch with Bill again - they were really good friends all through school. If you know his e-mail, phone, or address, could you please send me a message on my FB page? We would be forever grateful!
  • Norman Rick John---this is weird---I just looked up Kemper on Wikipedia & they are still going strong. One of my best friends told me he was forced to take early retirement a few years ago when Kemper went out of business. Randy was an actuary for many years. Either I have the wrong company, or maybe it was one of Kemper's affiliates?? Must email him now!
  • Ronald Veenstra We have a Kemper's in Robinson, IL who are the one's doing my taxes.
  • Bill McCarthy Bonnie Funk McCaffrey, You rode your bike from M.G. (in between the cemeteries) to Kennedy park; so you could go swimming in the big Olympic sized pool? back in 57? Well, CONGRATULATIONS. The Swank was still operating then, because I was Skating ...See More
  • Bonnie Funk McCaffrey Olympic-sized swimming pool...surely you jest. I have to wonder how we could ever really swim with all those bodies in the pool. Weren't there two pools? I seem to remember one for the boys and one for the girls. Am I remembering right? We like the Blue Island pool better but someone had to drive us there...too far to bike according to the "grown-ups".
  • Ed Barkowski Your right about the boys and girls pool. Also the was a wet line, if you wanted to go back in the pool for the second session.
  • Bonnie Funk McCaffrey Oh I remember the line. Crazy that we'd stand there for 1/2 an hour or 45 minutes to swim again in a packed swimming pool. What a different way of life it was.
  • Bill McCarthy Thats the way it was. I'm afraid that you no longer appear to be the winner of the trip. The question was: Did the Swank roller rink close before or after the new park house and swimming pool was added to Kennedy Park. Therefore braving the bicycle...See More
  • Bill McCarthy Bonnie Funk McCaffrey. No I don't Jest and please don't call me surely

No comments:

Post a Comment