Thursday, January 17, 2008

Knott's 1969 part two

Here's a few more Knott's shots for you! Months ago I posted this photo of the small stationary autos that kids could ride for a bit of low-key fun. Here is another later view...by now a small town has been built to add some themeing to the area. There's "Red" again, looking like she's 10 feet tall next to the Apollo theater. She's holding something that could be a rolled up map (?).


A slightly different angle...


And now for an unrelated picture that I threw in for the heck of it. At first I thought that a guest decided to climb up and have a photo taken while "playing" the calliope, but I have since found another Knott's slide from a different lot, and you can see the same lady in that picture too. I'll scan it and post it when I have a bit of time. The frontier-style dress, kerchief, shades, and mink stole add up to a unique ensemble that makes me assume that this lady was a bit of a character!

15 comments:

Jay Jennings said...

The woman in the 3rd photo is Escal McKinney. She played the organ outside The Bird Cage Theatre for many years. Her mother was Aunt Nellie, who played the dulcimer.

Jay

Smee said...

An earlier blog comment identifed the calliope player as Mae Mennes. Different time period, multiple calliope players?
http://gorillasdontblog.blogspot.com/2007/09/more-knotts-berry-farm-1960s.html

Chris Merritt said...

Hmmm - a strong resemblance - she sure looks like McKinney to me...

Natalie in Wyoming said...

Major Pepperidge -

I wanted to leave you a comment and let you know I adore your wonderful blog. It's a real treat for me, (a 19 year old Disney fanatic, who enjoys Knott's as well, and who can't even remember a time when the Sub Lagoon had water in it-I'll get to see that for the first time this March when I'll see the new Nemo ride)and I know all too often wonderful blogs don't get the credit they deserve. Keep it up, I'll be adding this to my favorites to see your updates!

Major Pepperidge said...

Natalie, thank you for your very nice comment, it's always great to know that there are new people out there who enjoy this blog. That's enough to keep me going! I still haven't seen the Nemo ride myself, even though I am only an hour from the park. Seems I make it to the Disneyland about once a year (sometimes twice), and I am hoping to go in the next month or two.

Thanks for adding "Gorillas Don't Blog" to your favorites, and be sure to keep checking in!

Vintage Disneyland Tickets said...

Hey Major, these are great! Red is back, and she looks so happy! Those little cars don't look like they take coins anymore (as they do in your prior post) so they just sat there? Thats why those girls look restless! I wonder where those little cars ended up????

I've been to Disneyland 4 times since the subs were back and I have yet to ride them. "Next Time"...

Kyle said...

Hi Major! I've been following your blog for some time now and have to say that it's a real treat to read & view! I check it out almost daily & you never fail to delight with the great photos and humorous narration. Snaps to you for doing an outstanding job; keep up the great work!
I may be alone in this but I think that child-sized streetscape behind Red is totally sweet! Just look at the details that were put into it (ticket window, marquee, display window); you really don't see this done anywhere anymore. Makes me wonder if Knott's used the same artists that designed & built these type of things for Disneyland. I would've found this way cool as a small kid.
Also, the lady on the organ is a riot! Those shades & that fur coat are just classic. Maybe she caught an old movie on the Late Show the previous night and decided to take a few style tips from Marlene Dietrich (or someone) for herself. Either that or it was sunny but cold in Buena Park that day.

Major Pepperidge said...

Hello Kyle, wow you and Natalie have made my day, I do appreciate it when people take the time to leave comments, especially when they are as complimentary as both of yours.

I'm guessing that there were a lot of craftsmen around who built movie sets, and maybe some of them were involved in the design and construction of this little town. Just a guess though...some of the folks who comment here are walking encyclopedias when it comes to Knott's!

Merlinsguy said...

Trust me. The woman in the photo is Mae Mennes.

Chris Merritt said...

My vote goes to Merlinsguy!

Merlinsguy said...

Mae Mennes was elderly, sweet, and nodded a lot. We would say hello, and she would nod sweetly. She was of two generations past. Maybe she was a bit lost, or maybe she connected with her own age group. Otherwise, she was an musician who played the calloipe. How many people can say that?

Chris Merritt said...

Merlinsguy - did she work in any other capacity at the Farm, or did she just do the Calliope?

Jay Jennings said...

My bad. The headline did say "1969", right? Escal McKinney played the Calliope in the 1950's through the early 60's, so she would've already left the farm by the late 1960's. A couple of old Knott's employees mentioned her name to me recently, so I jumped the gun and assumed it was her. Merlinsguy, that's very cool that you got to meet Mae.
Jay

Major Pepperidge said...

I love it when we get a discussion going! Thanks for your input, everybody. And don't worry about it Jay, you know more about Knott's than I ever will!

Jay Jennings said...

Major...I'd say we've got a while before we reach the 43-comment-debate that we all enjoyed last week on the authenticity of the Merry-Go-Round Auto Ride. LOL!
Jay