Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Date Festival, 1950's

Since 1957, the Southern California town of Indio has hosted it's annual Date Festival every February. Located 125 miles east of Los Angeles (not far from Palm Springs), it has been a popular tourist destination, and today still produces 35 million pounds of dates per year! Dat's a lot o' dates.

In this photo (late 50's, I'm guessing) we see a young boy who should be familiar to longtime viewers of this blog, in full cowboy regalia. He's waiting next to a miniature diesel locomotive full of squirming kids who are hungry for the taste of human flesh. Notice that he's holding an old "Travelodge" souvenir postcard. You can see some of the faux "Arabian" architecture in the background.


Here's a better look at a similar postcard:



Here's our buckaroo riding a pony. The tents, ferris wheel and merry-go-round all look like they will provide an afternoon of clean-cut Americana. The kid with the fez is great!


EXTRA! EXTRA! There's a new blog that I am sure will be worth checking out in the near future (the thing is so new that it might be a few days before it's ready for prime time). It's called Disneyland Nomenclature, with Jason Schultz (aka "Progressland") serving as the host, and he knows tons of stuff!

12 comments:

Progressland said...

Thanks for the plug! But it's the Disney*LAND* Nomenclature blog. Was that a setup? If so, you executed it PERFECTLY. :)

Major Pepperidge said...

Oops, no it was a dumb mistake which I have just fixed! Sorry about that...

Viewliner Ltd. said...

Awesome miniature version of a Union Pacific EMD-E9 Diesel Locomotive and cars. Great Travelodge PC too! This is great. Thanks Major.

Vintage Disneyland Tickets said...

These have an odd feel to them. I like them; they are a great "snapshot" of 1950's America. But who is that kid? What's the story behind that face? I guess we’ll never know…

Todd Franklin said...

Great photos! I have one of those Travelodge postcards in my collection, so it's nice to see it in a vintage photo!

Davelandweb said...

Love that miniature train...reminds me of the Viewliner.

Major Pepperidge said...

V.D.T., we've seen this kid many times before on my blog. This was from a fun lot, from mostly California. The kid and his younger sister and mom and dad can be seen at Santa's Village, Knott's, Disneyland, and Busch Gardens (haven't posted those yet).

walterworld said...

Great post---Do you also collect motel memoriabilia? If so, I'd love to see more...

Thanks!

Anonymous said...

The miniature train in the photo was, in all appropriateness to this Disney blog, manufactured by none other than Arrow Development in Mountain View. Arrow made several miniature trains, including faux-steam locomotives based off Casey Junior's whimsical lines.

Anonymous said...

Or actually, it might have been built by Chet Peterson of Railroad Supply. Similar trains ran at Griffith Park for several years.

Anonymous said...

I'm looking at the kid on the pony ,and I'm wondering if the owner of this picture has any more . I've been looking for pictures of this pony ride for a long time . In this picture you can see a red trick box and at the end of the ride the Ponies were trained to step up on the box for pictures . I knew the owner trainer of the ponies as a kid, and would love to see any pictures of the ponies up on the trick box .

Anonymous said...

I would like to add that the Carnival rides in the background of the boy on Pop Bakers pony ride were ours, and our Carnival played the date festival in the 50's and 60's .