Acres Motel – Chicago, Illinois

5600 Lincoln Avenue
Chicago, Illinois 60645
75 air conditioned and soundproof units
Free Television
Aquacade swimming pool & playground area
Restaurant & Cocktail Lounge
24 Hour Switchboard
Conference Rooms, seating capacity 10 to 150
14 minutes drive to Downtown Shopping
18 Minutes drive to O’Hare International Airport
Courtesy car to surrounding area and O’Hare Airport
S & H Green Stamps
AAA Approved. Diners’ Club, American Express Accepted. Member of the Aristocrat Inns of America

The Acres was opened from 1956 to October 26, 2000 when it was ordered to be torn down as part of a plan to redevelop Lincoln Avenue.

Be a Beautiful People at Gurney’s Inn – Montauk, Long Island, New York

Gurney's Inn - Montauk, Long Island, New York

The Many Splendored Resort
Gurney’s Inn
Montauk, Long Island, New York
Oceanfront resort complex and conference center. New international beauty an health spa to open late 1978. A responsive on-premise ownership management.
AAA and Mobil Travel Guide Rating “Excellent”
“1000 ft. off the World’s Finest Oceanfront Beach”
Open All Year
Joyce & Nick Monte, Keepers of the Inn.
Be a Beautiful People

Burning of Main Hall at University of Wisconsin – Madison, Wisconsin

UW Fire, 1916 - Burning of Main Hall at University of Wisconsin - Madison, Wisconsin

Wausau Daily Herald – October 10, 1916:

Entire Madison Fire Department Unable to Check Blaze Which Broke Out at 10: 15
Fifteen Hundred Students in Building No Loss of Life As They Escape Flames
LOSS NOT OVER $10,000.

Madison. October 10. Main hall at the university is in ruins. A smouldering fire was discovered under the dome at 10:13 a. m., and within an hour the massive dome had crumbled and fallen. The entire Madison fire department was on the ground.
Main hall is valued at $202,000. At 11:30 Fire Chief Heyl said the hall was practically ruined. The building is insured in the state fire Insurance fund for $184,000. The contents are valued at $36,000.
Fifteen hundred students were in the building when the fire was discovered. They got out in orderly fashion. There were no
mishaps, but there were many miraculous escapes.
As soon as the fire was discovered. one hundred students scaled the roof of the hall to fight the blaze. Fire lines were quickly thrown out and five thousand people were at the lire within twenty minutes. The original structure was built under an appropriation of $45,000 made by the legislature in 1857. Since then two wings have been added.
President Van Hise of the university said; “The fire apparently started in the literary society room or in the dome.’ The alarm was immediately turned in and the equipment here in the building was manned by the force of janitors augmented by students. We are particularly proud of the way the thousands of students in the building conducted themselves. There was no disorder of any kind and nothing resembling a panic. We had planned against such a calamity and had a routine fire drill that worked perfectly. I did not know how long It took them to get out. Last year when we tried it they got out in two minutes. As far as damage is concerned, of course, I am unable to say at the present time. 1 hope it will not be large. We are doing everything we can do.”

The fire was believed to have been caused by an errant cigarette.

Taco Bell – St. Petersburg, Florida

In August 1967, Glen W. Bell Jr., chairman of Taco Bell Inc., opened regional headquarters for the chain at 4901r 34 St. N. in St. Petersburg, and announced plans to open franchise locations throughout Florida.

Within weeks ads started appearing northern Florida papers selling the concept of Taco Bell:

America’s fastest growing Mexican Food Drive-In Restaurant Chain offers you a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity!
PRIDE: You prepare and serve authentic and delicious Mexican food exclusively. You own the most unique and beautifully designed Mexican Hacienda-style restaurant.
SUCCESS: Over 150 franchised units opened in the past 24 months with more opening all over the nation
PROFITS: The exclusivity of the menu and the uniqueness of the restaurant takes it out of the realm of competition. Earnings are excellent and unlimited!
REQUIREMENTS: The people we select to own a Taco Bell Franchise are able to invest $24,000 in a business with a substantial return, and have the desire to be independent and grow . in their own business.
AREAS AVAILABLE Tampa, Pensacola, West Palm Beach. Ft. Pierce, Lakeland, Gainesville. Jacksonville, and Tallahassee. For Complete Information Write: TACO BELL 4901 34th Street, North St. Petersburg, Fla. 33714

December 14, 1967 a new location opened. The Taco Bell located at 5th Avenue North and 34th St. in St. Petersburg was the first Taco Bell built in the state and the 200th location overall since the company’s inception in 1947.

Tampa Bay Times – November 23, 1967

This was just the start. On December 20th, a Tampa Bay Times article entitled “Taco Tycoon Centers in St. Petersburg”, written by Don Teverbaugh, provided a glimpse in to the mindset of Glen Bell and the company:

Glen W. Bell Jr. knew about St. Petersburg was the old bit about the green benches and the shuffleboard courts and he came here by sheer chance he was on his way to Sarasota.
But Bell liked what he saw in St. Petersburg and decided this was where he wanted his family to live and where he wanted to expand his business.
Bell, a husky ex-marine with a shy smile, is the owner and brains behind one of the fastest growing restaurant chains in the nation Taco Bell Inc.
In the past year, Taco Bell has jumped from 100 to 200 franchisee! units in operation. This year they will have a sales volume of more than $200-million, he says.
Like the McDonald’s Hamburger chain, Bell got his start in San Bernadino, Calif. For a few years he would build up small chains of eight or 10 Mexican food shops, then sell them off.
By constantly experimenting he finally came up with the current blend of Mexican foods he features in his Taco Bell shops and he started franchising the system, the first Taco Bell restaurant opened in 1962 and the first franchise unit in 1965.
Today it costs almost $20,000 for a franchise, plus an 8 per cent cut of the profit. Bell selects the site, builds the plant, leases it to the operator (on a 10 year amortization basis) and provides the proven path to profits.
Each operator is given the right of first refusal for any other Taco Bell restaurants planned in his immediate vicinity.
Bell’s first franchised operation in Florida opened here last week and used more than 1,500 pounds of ground beef during the grand opening. It has been a far more successful opening than Bell had ever hoped for, he! concedes.
Bell plans about 40 franchises for Florida. The next to open will probably be in Miami. So far, most of the applicants are from California (where he will not sell any more franchises). In about six months, perhaps a year, Bell plans to sell “about 15 per cent” of his company to the public.
“I think some of these franchise firms have gone public a little too early but look what’s happened to their stock. It has soared. Maybe I’m wrong for waiting,” he smiles.
Right now, Bell is looking over a number of real estate parcels here which he can transform into a training seminar for his steady stream of new operators. He also plans to build a tortilla factory here to supply the Florida and eastern market he is developing.

Taco Bell Restaurant - St. Petersburg, Florida
Postcard of the first Florida Taco Bell

The first location boomed. hundreds and hundreds of more locations would later follow suit. There is still a Taco Bell on the site of the first one. It is unrecognizable, so I am not sure if it is indeed the same building.

The Ellis Puppets – Warren, Michigan

Mr. & Mrs. Ellis and The Ellis Puppets, Dedicated to God to Show Boys and Girls How They Can Go to Heaven the Way the Bible, God's Word Says, and Not the Way Man Says. 29650 Ryan Rd., Warren, Michigan

The Ellis Puppets were a religious puppet show put on by a couple that lived at 29650 Ryan Road in Warren, Michigan that was “dedicated to God to Show Boys and Girls how they can go to heaven the way the Bible, God’s word, says, and not the way man says. The Bible has the answers.”

The verso of the card below says:

Read John 3:3. 3:46, 3:16, Revelations 3:20, Apoculips 3:20, John 1:12, Ephesians 2:8-9, Romans 3:23, 5:12, 10:0 – 10-13; Invite Jesus today to come into your heart and forgive your sins and save you. He said he will, so try Him. You life will change, see 2 Cor. 5:17. Mrs. Missionary woman’s song and accordion music is done by Mrs. Irene Paulson, a real missionary in Kembe, Central African Republic (write her a letter and tell her how you liked the play and song).
Songs by Alberta Williams, Leslie Ellis, Kenneth Overholt; Organist Mrs. David Canine (Pastor’s wife). Recording, John Sperry. All are of Tabernacle Baptists Church, Hazel Park, Michigan.
Mr. Ellis is a deacon of Tabernacle Baptists Church, Mrs. Ellis is a church clerk.
The puppets are approx. 18″ High. The stage is approx. 7′ high, 3′ Deep, 6′ Long.
The music and singing is taped. Message add lib.

The Ellis Puppets - Warren, Michigan

I was only able to find one mention of the Ellis Puppets on There was a little blurb in Sat, August 19, 1972 edition of the News-Journal from Mansfield, Ohio.

KTLA Channel 5 Slides, Volume 2

Last week I posted a series of slides from KTLA-specific programs. This week it’s for slides advertising their syndicated shows. Without further ado…

  1. Popeye and His Friends

2. The Munsters

3. The Three Stooges

4. The Little Rascals

5. Leave it To Beaver

6. Ozzie and Harriet

7. Bonanza

8. The Rifleman

9. F Troop

10. Charlie’s Angels

11. Wonder Woman

12. CHiPs

13. Taxi

14. Sha Na Na

15. Gilligan’s Island

16. Alfred Hitchcock Presents

17. The Twilight Zone

18. Lost In Space

20. Little House on the Prairie

Welcome to Mars, Pennsylvania

Welcome to Mars - Mars, Pennsylvania

Costumes used by the British Broadcasting Company in the filming of the Vikings trip to Planet Mars in 1976. The pictures were taken in Mars, Pennsylvania.

I was unable to find the 1976 BBC segment about the Vikings’ mission to Mars, but I did find another informative piece from the same year about the mission and the landing on July 20, 1976.

Ella’s Deli and Ice Cream Parlor – Madison, Wisconsin

Ella's Deli & Ice Cream Parlor - Madison, Wisconsin

The following appeared on the Ella’s Deli’s website in January 2018:

It is with sad hearts that we announce that Ella’s Deli will be closing at our current location. It has been our privilege to be a part of the Madison community for 42 years.
Ella’s has always been about people and we are so very grateful to all our customers and employees. To the many families that have visited us, including over multiple generations, we have enjoyed getting to know you and meeting your children and then your children’s children. To the thousands of amazing former and current employees we have had over the years, your dedication has made Ella’s the award winning destination it is today. Our goal is to continue the Ella’s tradition. It is our hope that Ella’s will be back under new ownership, in a new space, and with a new and exciting direction.
We hope you can visit us, say hi, and enjoy your favorites one last time. Our last day of business will be around January 21, 2018. We may modify our hours to accommodate our employees. We will update on our Facebook page with changes as we make them.
Thank you again for allowing us to be a part of this community by including us in so many moments in your lives, from celebrating birthdays, to first dates, to just enjoying family dinners. We are forever grateful for your support.

Ella Fodiman Hirschfeld was born on February 28, 1914 in Russia and came to America as an infant. She grew up in a Russian/Jewish area in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. At the age of 19 she met and married Harry C. Hirschfeld and the couple made their way to Madison in 1939. Ella was very active in her faith and through local Jewish organizations. She was a founding member of Beth Israel center in Madison and she was Administrative Secretary to multiple rabbis.

On July 4, 1963, Ella and Harry opened Ella’s Deli in downtown Madison, Wisconsin. Ella had been catering meals for the Hillel organization at the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus and her rabbi loved the food so much that he suggested she should open a deli. The Hirschfeld’s bought an old grocery store at 425 State Street and christened the business Ella’s Deli, as the local Jewish students had gotten to know Ella so well.

Ella’s Deli Menu courtesy of the Wisconsin Historical Scoiety

Business boomed from the start. Ella told the Wisconsin State Journal in 1993, “we worked very hard getting it organized, but on Saturdays and Sundays, we used to have lines that reached around the corner.” The corned beef, roast beef and homemade pound cake were the biggest sellers.

Unfortunately for Ella and Harry, the business got too successful and they had a hard time keeping up. The sold Ella’s Deli in 1967 to Nathan Balkin. Under Balkin business continued to flourish and Ella’s was about to expand. A second location at 2902 E. Washington Ave. (East Wash) opened in 1976. Ella Hirschfeld died in 1995.

Wisconsin State Journal – April 25, 1976

The second location was smashing success. The menu featured many traditional Jewish items including matzo ball soup, liver, tongue, kugel, blintzes, bagels. There were also dozens of soup, salad and sandwich options. The real kicker was the ice cream counter, which had 26 flavors of Chocolate Shoppe ice cream and a modified version Ella’s pundcake recipe that was turned into a poundcake sundae.

Ella’s Deli Postcard courtesy of Cardcow

The food and ice cream weren’t the only reason for Ella’s success. Owner Ken Balkin, son of Nathan, described the location on East Wash as a “Jewish Deli (crossed) with animated circus toys.” He went to say that “Ella’s reputation as a destination restaurant has grown along with its burgeoning collection of whizzing, whirling antique toys and its remarkable 1929 vintage Parker carousel next to the Parking lot. It’s an amazing place with a design that is totally distinctive.”

There were 40 unique tables, with tchotchkes and trinkets under glass, superheroes, trains planes, clowns, robots and famous cartoon characters covered the restaurant, which had a capacity of 150 people.

View of the Carousel

Ella’s on State Street closed in 1999. In late 2017, Ken Balkin announced that they were looking to sell Ella’s quickly. He stated “We have decided that the time is right. The economics have just been difficult recently. The competitive nature of the restaurant business in Madison is pretty brutal.” Having found no seller, that’s when they official announced on Facebook and their website that they were closing for good.

On January 21, 2018 a giant celebration was held to honor the 42 years of Ella’s. Tears flowed and hugs plentiful. The local landmark closed its doors that night. The building is still vacant.

Wisconsin State Journal – January 22, 2018

A letter in Wisconsin State Journal on January 27, 2018 summed up perfectly what Ella’s meant to Madison:

We have enjoyed Ella’s Deli since its opening, and we want to honor and appreciate the good things the Balkins have done in addition to the remarkable ways they have fed and entertained us.
From the opening of Ella’s Deli and over the decades, the Balkins have created a gift for the people of Madison. This iconic place of kosher-style food, and with its wonderful toy collection, has offered a warm welcome and unique entertainment for all ages.
In addition to gracious hospitality, the Balkins have offered safe employment opportunities for many young people and adults in their first job experiences.
In our personal visits, we have enjoyed the friendship of Ken and Judy Balkin and members of the staff. They introduced us to new, constantly changing artistic displays of cartoon characters and dream creations, descending from the ceiling and all around us. We have seen these fantasies bring joy to toddlers and “children at heart.”
Many Madison citizens have pursued their entrepreneurial dreams — few have accomplished them as successfully as the Balkins. We are sorry to see Ella’s Deli disappear from the Madison landscape. It has been a shimmering jewel, welcoming all of us.
We thank the Balkins and wish them well in their retirement. – Howard and Lucetta Kanetzke, Madison

Peppermint Lounge – New York, New York

Peppermint Lounge - New York, New York

The Peppermint Lounge was located at 128 West 45th Street in New York. Although it was only opened for seven years (1958-1965), the Peppermint Lounge birthed the Twist, the massive dance craze of the early 60s, and several radio hits.

The following paragraph comes from the wonderful Gender Variance Who’s Who ( and does a fantastic job of summarizing the demise of the Peppermint Lounge

Peppermint Lounge - New York, New York

The ground floor premises at128 West 45th Street had been licensed on numerous occasions since 1934. Over the years there had been numerous arrests of gay men, and citations for disorderly premises and Administrative Code violations. The NY State Liquor Authority had stated that no renewal was to be issued for 1959 until a bona fide buyer took over. It was then rented to 128 Restaurant Inc, and the owners of record were Ralph Saggesse and Orlando Grippo. In reality they were employed by Sam Konwiser who ran businesses for Johnny Biello, a capo in the Genovese crime family.

The Peppermint Lounge opened in 1958. It had a lengthy mahogany bar running along one side, lots of mirrors and a dance floor at the back, a capacity of just 178 people. There was a back door into the Knickerbocker Hotel Lobby. Johnson et al describe the hotel at that time: it “rented as many rooms by the hour as they did to the luckless out-of-towners, the unemployed and those only a week away from living on the streets”.

The Peppermint Lounge was mainly a gay bar. The major dance craze 1960-1 was the Twist. Much to the surprise of Johnny Biello, this became associated with the Peppermint Lounge, and celebrities, especially Hollywood stars, flocked there to do the dance, and to be photographed doing it. The house band was Joey Dee and the Starlighters. Jackie Kennedy arranged for a temporary ‘Peppermint Lounge’ in the White House. A sister club was opened in Miami Beach. Gays and lesbians liked the dance because it did not necessarily require a partner, and if dancing with a same-sex partner when the police raided, one could spin around to face a partner of the other gender. It is said that (female) go-go dancing (alone on a raised platform for others to watch) originated at the Peppermint Lounge.

Peppermint Lounge - New York, New York

In 1965 the New York State Liquor Authority revoked the Peppermint Lounge’s liquor license. This was upheld in the state Supreme Court. The club closed in December 1965.

Peppermint Lounge - New York, New York