Scenes from Weekend Events 5/3&4

Luxe Glamour Bar Ribbon-Cutting

Owner Brittany Williams welcomed aa great crowd to Luxe Glamour Bar at Suite 103 Coosa Pines Drive in Childersburg for her official Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony. Brittany personally specializes in las extensions, with plans to add plenty of glamour-related services going forward!

Stepping Up for Mental Health

2nd Annual Magnificent Seven May Day

A growing group of community volunteers, the Magnificent Seven hosted their 2nd Annual May Day event in Noble Park, celebrating children with fun & games!

Iconic ‘Old Hickory’ BBQ recipe found; It will be served FREE on April 27th in Sylacauga

Jim ‘Zig’ Zeigler writes about Alabama’s people, places, events, groups and prominent deaths.  He is a former Alabama Public Service Commissioner and State Auditor. You can reach him for comments at [email protected].
See the original 1819News article by clicking HERE!

For over a half-century, if you traveled from the Birmingham/Shelby area to Lake Martin, you knew the Old Hickory Barbecue Restaurant in Sylacauga.

If you traveled Highway 280 to Auburn home football games, you may have pulled into the Old Hickory and bought their unique barbecue for tailgating.

The barbecue was so unusual that some folks would make a special trip just to eat at the Old Hickory. It became a destination.

The Old Hickory Barbecue in Sylacauga, famous for decades for its unique taste, has been closed since the 1980s, and the barbecue recipe was presumed lost.

Enter Sylacauga native Lamar “Mole” Humphries. The retiree (Class of ’66 Sylacauga High) took on the mission of finding the recipe and re-creating Old Hickory barbecue.

He did. He located the original recipe, blended the sauce, and barbecued with it.  Voila! A return of the Old Hickory taste and feel.

He then cooked up 17 gallons of Old Hickory Barbecue Sauce and made it his gift to friends in pint jars.

Now, “Mole,” as he is universally known in East Alabama, is taking folks on a trip to yesteryear, back to the Old Hickory era. The gastronomical nostalgic trip is on Saturday, April 27 at Blue Bell Central Park in downtown Sylacauga. Mole is bringing the Old Hickory sauce, setting up his giant commercial-grade smoker, and cooking free for all comers.

Mole will start serving around noon.

No ticket, no RSVP and no money are required. Just show up and get in line. First come, first served. Many coming that day will bring sides for all — baked beans, potato salad, chips, Cole slaw, and desserts.     

It’s the second coming of the Old Hickory.

Blue Bell Central Park is located across the street from the classic entryway to the Blue Bell Ice Cream plant at 436-498 North Norton in downtown Sylacauga.­

Bluebellpark Alabama News
Blue Bell Central Park. Four Square City Guide

The occasion for Mole Humphries’ free barbecue is the annual “Frosty Inn Reunion.”  The “Frosty”, the beloved gathering place for teenagers of the 1960s, 70s and 80s, has also been closed going on 40 years, but those teenagers of yesterday remember and re-create the golden days of their youth each year. The Frosty alums will gather again from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, April 27 at Blue Bell Central Park.

2024 marks the 14th straight year these Baby Boomers regroup for the Frosty Reunion. This will be the first time they and all the others there will eat Old Hickory Barbecue as their lunch in the park.  

For decades, thousands of Alabama residents drove past the Old Hickory Barbecue each day. The restaurant was located on what was then U.S. Highway 280 and 231 as they traversed Fort Williams Street in downtown Sylacauga. 280 was the main route from Birmingham to Lake Martin to Auburn and on to Phenix City/Columbus, while 231 was the route to Montgomery. Both passed the Old Hickory and then separated paths just south of Sylacauga.

Later, 280 and 231 were re-routed to a new four-lane west of Sylacauga, but the Old Hickory remained for 20 more years.

This won’t be the first time that Mole Humphries has gone the second mile for his fellow yutes of yesteryear. He is known as “Mole the Music Man” and preserved the music of the 1960s, first on a reel-to-reel, then on a cassette, and finally on CDs. Mole has given out free CDs of the music he grew up with at gatherings over the past five years. Generous.

Mole came by his love of 1960s music naturally. His family owned a music/record shop in downtown Sylacauga in the 60s. It was the cool place to go, browse and listen.

So how did Mole Humphries come by his other obsession — to locate the Old Hickory barbecue recipe and cook free for everybody on April 27? Ask him while he’s taking the meat off the grill.

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A “Winning” Night for Watwood

Courtesy of Meredith Wesson Hughes

The A. H. Watwood Elementary School PTO Reverse Drawdown was held Saturday evening (4/13) at Childersburg Parks-Recreation.

We would like to thank everyone who supported our school through ticket purchases and door prize donations.

Our very own Superintendent-Dr. Suzanne Lacey-won the drawdown and gave the PTO her winnings!

We are very thankful for Dr. Lacey and we could not be happier to see all of our hard work pay off in a spectacular way for our school. Thank you to all of the Watwood staff that helped us tonight and our teachers who supported us through ticket purchases.

There are so many people who had a hand in making tonight a success and we appreciate you! On behalf of myself, Emelia Pate Edwards and Adam Aj Jordon- we would also like to thank (Principal) Amy Smith, (Cburg Parks and Rec) Brad Logan, (Asst Principal) Delisha McClure Cardwell, (Talladega Co School Board member) Sharon Landers, Les and Dusti Smith (Cater Up), & (Childersburg Police Department) Officer Brandon Hughes for all your help to make this event successful.

Baby Boomers of East Alabama recreate their youth April 27: Frosty Inn Reunion

Jim ‘Zig’ Zeigler writes about Alabama’s people, places, events, groups and prominent deaths. He is a former Alabama Public Service Commissioner and State Auditor. You can reach him for comments at [email protected].

You remember the movie “American Graffiti.”

“Where were you in 62?”

Teenagers riding around town in cool cars. Casing their favorite hamburger joint.

“Boy meets girl, and girl meets boy.”  – The Tams

Those scenes will be remembered and recreated on Saturday, April 27, at Blue Bell Central Park in downtown Sylacauga. Teens of the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s will gather now as they did then.

Then, the gathering place was The Frosty Inn, a root beer and hamburger joint on what was then U.S. Highway 280. The highway was later rerouted from in-town Fort Williams Street to a four-lane west of town. But the Frosty Inn stayed into the 1980s.

Yutes from Sylacauga, Alex City, Goodwater, Childersburg, Talladega, Fayetteville, Shelby County, Clay County, Winterboro, Socapatoy and anywhere in driving distance headed to “The Frosty” many weekend nights and sometimes during the week. It was the designated gathering place for your old friends and to meet new friends. Many a romance and a few marriages started at The Frosty.

It was a safe environment. Was there trouble? Only a very little, and nothing like the trouble we hear of nowadays. A very occasional fistfight – no guns. A little beer (though not allowed) – either no marijuana or else well-hidden. A little showoff driving. Mostly just all-American fun.

There is now a marble plaque where The Frosty Inn once stood. It succinctly tells the story:

Once there was a place of fun and safety. Where lifelong friendships were made. Victories celebrated. Losses consoled and newcomers welcomed. That place was The Frosty Inn, located on this site during the 1960s and 70s. Thanks to Catherine and Frank McCaa for treating us like family and providing a place to spend the wonderful days and nights of our youth.

“See you at the Frosty.”

That salutation, “See you at the Frosty,” was a calling card for the yutes of that era. You still can occasionally hear one of them say to another, “See you at the Frosty.” Since the inn is no longer there, that just means that they will be at the annual Frosty Inn Reunion and expect the others to grace the occasion with their presence.

That plaque was envisioned, paid for and created by these same ex-yutes in the earlier years of The Frosty Inn Reunion. It is a local tradition, a part of history that the supporters of the reunion refuse to let die.

The official mother of the Frosty Inn was Catherine McCaa. She and husband Frank started, owned and ran the Frosty. During the day, they served as surrogate parents for dozens – maybe hundreds – of teenagers who grew up in the parking lot of The Frosty. There was no inside seating, so everyone was an equal in the surrounding lot. The McCaas dispensed advice, admonitions and encouragement in addition to hamburgers and quite tingly root beer.

Mrs. McCaa herself came to the Frosty reunions and served as Grand Marshall when they used to have a parade around the former Frosty site (now a Sonic) and around the block-away Dairy Queen, which was the route that yutes would drive incessantly.

Mrs. McCaa continued to grace the gathering with her presence until her death at age 98 in 2021. Now, her son Duke McCaa represents the family. He too was a yute of the era. The Frosty era.

Those yutes are now aged 60s and 70s. A few 80s and 50s. They will become teenagers again on Saturday, April 27 from 10:30 a.m. until about 3 p.m. – come and go. In and out, just like at the old Frosty Inn. Casual dress, just like then.

Will we see any madras shirts, peddle pushers, penny loafers or bell bottoms? Maybe a few. There would be more, but the actual clothes they wore in that era seem to have shrunk, and the former yutes cannot get into them. This is not a costume party, but some have not changed their style much and some will go retro. Most just in jeans.

Blue Bell Central Park is located at 470 North Norton, right across from the classic-looking entrance to the famous Blue Bell Ice Cream plant. Except for the pavilion, it is an outdoor venue.

There is no entry fee to get into the reunion. No ticket or RSVP are required. Just like at the old Frosty. Just show up.

And bring your appetite. Don’t eat lunch before you come. There will be FREE food there. That’s a difference with the old Frosty, which charged cheap prices for their good food.

Music will be provided by retired DJ Barry McAnnally, who had been a radio personality in the Birmingham market in the 60s and 70s under the radio names, “Joey Roberts” and “Bob Barry.”  You may remember his smooth voice from WSGN, WYDE, WMLS and other stations. You will remember all of the great music you grew up with.

“See you at the Frosty.”

Click HERE for the original 1812News story:

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