Recreation in a new place seems to be in cycles. The first cycle began with the construction period. With thousands of men away from their families living in rough barracks and trailer-camps, companionship was sought in an improvised recreation hall. A group of WPA workers from Fall River county including Mrs. Goldie Lovell, Mrs. LuWellie Clark, Mrs. Catherine Short, Mr. Peter Lundeen and Mr. Putman, came to the Area and established playgrounds, conducted baseball and volleyball games, held community sings and dances. The story is told that on several evenings before furnaces were installed, the group danced to keep warm.
A library was started and served not only as a reading center but as a place to play cards, write letters and hold church services. What an unusual sight it presented! Packed each night to overflowing with a crowd made up for the most part of men reading or playing games without removing their hats, while over all hung a soft cloud of tobacco smoke. Here was none of the solemn hush found in the conventional library, for at Provo the customary "Quiet" sign was unknown.
This library was located in the PX hall, which was not only the recreation center for the project but also the shopping and service center. Ping-pong tables occupied the center of the huge, rough room, which at least twice each week was cleared for dances, sings and meetings. A juke box, hour after hour, ground out music, and nightly seemed in need of adjustment -- perhaps due to mechanical indigestion brought on by the deluge of nickels with which it was never-endingly fed. Group recreation resulted in successful community sings, picnics for the children and sports activities such as baseball and boxing.
The highlights of this first cycle were the 1942 Fourth of July celebration and the ceremonies of September 3, 1942, in celebration of the breaking of the world's record for pouring igloos; namely 33, the feature of the latter being an all-day Indian pageant by Rose Ecoffey and her Frontier Day Indians. Indian dances, language and way of life before the coming of the white man were realistically depicted by the group.
Following the major construction period, recreational activities passed into the second cycle in which the USO with offices at Edgemont played a major role. Under the direction of Miss Marie Newell and Miss Carolyn Goetting a full program of planned activity was set up for BHOD. Dancing, dramatics, sports, and activities for the growing population of teen-agers and children were featured.
The third and present recreation cycle came into being with the completion of the Community Building the progressive development of the Employee Welfare Association which now plays a major role in the direction of BHOD's recreational program. The focal point for this program is the community building Recreation Center.
This center offers a variety of opportunities. A Little Theater organization is active for those interested in dramatics; a band furnishes interest for people talented in music; community sings create an expression for old and young; and a newly organized speech class gives an opportunity to learn.
A book club meets occasionally on Sunday afternoon with local reviewers, and a fortnightly card club is a source of enjoyment.
Community auction sales are held where furniture, clothing and any surplus changes hands readily.
The BHOD dance band is active and furnishes music for weekly dances at the Community Center. Old time dances are a regular Thursday night event and the teen-agers take over the dance floor on Friday evening.
The Business and Professional women of Igloo are organized and a Square Club offers recreational fellowship for the men.
The Officers' Club is the scene of many parties which civilian as well as military personnel enjoy. Athletics are represented in various forms, the most active being basketball and softball. A basketball league was formed with eight competing teams during the 1943-44 season. Tournament winner was the Indian team. Due to the large number of younger men in the armed service, no league was organized for the 1944-45 season, however, a team representing the depot played to capacity crowds with surrounding towns and camps.
In May, 1943, a Softball League was organized and equipped through funds raised from donations by the civilian and military personnel of the depot. Later the Employee Welfare Association purchased more than $200 worth of equipment which has been used to good advantage. Games were held five nights a week. On Sundays a representative team either played away from home or teams from Hot Springs, Ft. Robinson or the Rapid City Air Base came to BHOD. The 1944 season was not as successful as the 1943 season due to the large number of young men being in the service.
Since the installation of four standard alleys in a special building located between the restaurant and Community Building, bowling has become the recreational highlight for the 1944-45 season. These fine alleys are equipped with automatic pin setters and are in constant use by the BHODians. Both men's and women's leagues have been formed consisting of 16 and 8 teams respectively. Monday, Tuesday and Thursday nights are reserved for league bowling, while the remaining nights are left open.
Among the recreational plans for the coming summer are listed such items as new and additional playgrounds for the children, a swimming pool, tennis courts, and both hard and soft ball diamonds.
|Vol. 1 No. 24
|June 20, 1952
Through the Welfare Council, which is furnishing equipment and space and aided by volunteer workers and Organizations, Black Hills Ordnance Depot will offer a variety of sports and recreation during the summer months. The program has been planned to include all ages and both sexes. The following resume of the various activities is presented, and it is hoped that everyone will avail themselves of this splendid opportunity to participate in the program.
Girls and boys are encouraged to participate in soft-ball. Bats and balls are available and can be checked out at the Community Building. If enough interest is shown, teams will be organized and a league formed.
For the boys that are interested, boxing equipment is available. Any boy interested in taking boxing lessions may leave his name at the Community Building. Parents are assured that supervision will be available and all precautions will be taken to prevent injury.
The basketball courts at the Community Building are available at all times. Basketballs are furnished. However, street shoes are not permitted while using the court.
The swimming pool will open shortly. Mr. Ronnie Simpson has been engaged as the life guard for the season. Swimming classes for beginners will be held. All who are interesed in learning to swim are encouraged to attend. Swimming is one of the more healthful exercises and is a skill that everyone should acquire. Remember the life you save may be your own.
Shuffleboard tables, ping-pong tables, and pool tables are available during the operating hours of the Community Building Residents of the Depot are encouraged to make full use of this equipment.
Badminton fans will find a badminton court available in the small gym.
There are two tennis courts available. They are located behind the Community Building. These courts are available for use at all times. Mr. Ben Salmon "a former Champ" has volunteered to teach the fine points of the game to those who are interested. It is felt that this should promote a great deal of interest in the game. Tennis is a sport for both sexes and it is hoped that a good number will take adantage of this opportunity.
Junior Junior baseball is underway under the able supervision of Daniel Van Goodman. So develop your boy into a baseball player under this program. The instruction will be excellent.
Lon Jackman is managing the Junior Legion baseball team. Interest in this field is high and it is felt that Igloo will be well represented in Junior Legion competition this year.
The Vets Club baseball team has entered the Southern Hills League and is the possessor of two victories. Oelrichs and Edgemont were the victims. Ray Lenz is doing the managerial chores and is looking forward to a successful season.
The Vet's Club softball team is rounding into shape. From all indications an excellent team is on hand and there should be some fine games this summer.
The Welfare Council employs three hostesses and a janitor to aid you in the participation of any of the recreations listed. They will be glad to furnish additional informations as to the times and schedules. The Council has also announced that new playground equipment for the small fry will be purchased.
Those activities sponsored by the Vets Club are just a few of the activities that this organization aids and supports.
Its your program. Participate actively and insure its success.
|Vol. 2 No. 49
|pages 1 and 2
|Dec. 4, 1953
Plans are virtually complete for the new bleachers, to be installed in the large gym at the Community Building.
Lloyd Torkelson, Civilian Welfare Council President, said the bleachers would be 42 feet wide, seven rows high and 12 feet deep. Torkelson said it should seat between 150 and 175 people comfortably.
According to present plans, removal of the stage will permit the basketball floor to be lengthened 12 feet and widened four feet. Removal of one row of folding chairs on each side will be permitted due to the additional seating capacity gained by the bleachers.
The project is being financed, in part, through the assistance of organizations using the large gym for revenue raising purposes. Effective the first of November, five per cent of the gross receipts of all activities taking place in the large gym were earmarked by the using organization for the building fund turned over to the Council for that purpose.
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