'Rockin' for the Russell'

2010-04-04T19:15:00Z 'Rockin' for the Russell'Jane Cline Kabler, Food Writer Ledger Independent
April 04, 2010 7:15 pm  • 

What could be more fun than an evening filled with live music of the 1950s and 1960s?

The Events Planning Committee for restoring the Russell Theater has outdone itself with the entertainment planned for Friday, April 23, at the Limestone Center, home of the old Tom Browning Boys and Girls Club.

This evening promises to be entertaining and fun. The dance floor will once again come alive with music for dancing or one can just sit back and listen. We'll go back in time to a Sock Hop at Teen Canteen. This event was easy to plan, since I was a teen when the great band, "The Torques," played on special occasions. Of course the teens of today are asking their parents "Who are The Torques?"

"The Torques" have six members and four are original members. They played on the first night that Teen Canteen opened back in the late 1950s. The Saturday night Sock Hop was a great place to go and enjoy music and to just be with your friends. Some Saturday nights they would have a live band and other times a deejay. Don Hiles, an employee of WFTM, "the round man of sound" served as the deejay. The girls usually spent the week dreaming of that special guy asking them to dance and deciding on what to wear. Their outfits were mostly puffed sleeved blouses and a full skirt with a crinoline, maybe a poodle on the skirt and those famous saddle oxford brown and white shoes (with socks). Ugh! In the winter, they wore wool skirts and angora sweaters, or jeans rolled up to their knees with penny loafers and white socks.

Parents were chaperones and never had a problem with behavior. The teens paid 50 cents to attend the Teen Canteen dances each Saturday night. At that time the club was not co-ed except for Teen Canteen. The late Earl Holland, director of the club was always there and knew most of the teens by name. He totally supported the Teen Canteen and knew this was a safe place for teens to be on Saturday night. He always made the teens feel welcomed. Kids who needed extra attention were always given it by Mr. Holland. Most of the teens danced every single dance and today the words to all of the songs are still imbedded in our minds. Closing time was 11 p.m. Sometimes the boys were a bit shy, and about an hour before time to leave, they were dancing and having a great time.

Harry Mann, a teen in the late 1950s, brought me some photos taken one Saturday night and these will be on display April 23 at the Sock Hop. I hope that others will bring me photos to display throughout the evening. Drop these off at The Ledger Independent and make sure you put your name on the envelope so they can be returned to you.

In planning for this event I talked with John DeSpain and he and a couple of friends actually booked "The Torques" for the first Teen Canteen dance. Some of you might also remember them performing at the Maysville Country Club. According to John the group, when together at the country club, made a major decision to get serious about its future and actually made some recordings. The original recordings are now available on CDs. The group also has a Web site.

All proceeds from the Sock Hop will benefit the Russell Theater. The outside marquee and lobby are finished and beautiful. Everything is back to the original colors and even the new carpet is almost an exact match with the old. New restrooms have been installed. The greatest task of all will be restoring the auditorium to its original grandeur.The interior of the auditorium is in horrible condition, but enough is left to restore the same colors and style. The theater has a new roof so no more leaks!

Many are excited that once the restoration is completed there will be state of the art projection equipment, sound system, unique lighting, a large screen and equipment to do simulcast productions from major cities. Plans are to use it for cartoons for kids on Saturdays, movies, sports and lecture simulcasts and movie marathons.

The time for completion is still unknown. The funds raised to complete this project will determine the date it will be ready for use. The cost to complete this endeavor is in excess of $1 million.

Tickets for the evening of April 23 may be purchased at Tierney's downtown, Traxel's on the hill, Peggy's Gift Shop at Meadowview Regional Medical Center and Downing Insurance.

There will only be 200 tickets available and they are on sale now. Seating will be 20 tables with 10 at a table. Snacks and soft drinks will be available.

Tickets are $200 for a table of ten, $45 per couple or $25 per person.

Sponsors for the evening are Meadowview Regional Medical Center, Clarke's Insurance, Christy and Kirk Clarke, Kaye Savage Browning, Limestone Properties, Hardymon Lumber, Boone Real Estate and Lundy's.

Dress for the evening is casual and bring or wear your dancing shoes. For more information contact me at jane.kabler@lee.net.

Whenever you have committee meeting, and we have lots of planning meetings, do a potluck of dessert snacks or salads. After all the key to the success of your event is the committee, so make their meetings enjoyable. The Event Planning Committee for the fund-raising activities have worked many hours planning and actually working at events. They have a good time working together and also sharing good foods.

Here are several good recipes that can be used for guests or at a committee meeting. Enjoy.

Strawberry Parfait

4 parfait glasses

4 cups of French Vanilla Pudding

2 cups of sliced fresh strawberries or blueberries

3/4 cup of whipped cream

2 cups of granola bars with honey, chopped

Layer first pudding, then strawberries, more pudding and more strawberries. Place chopped granola on top with a dab of whipped cream.


1 cup of white sugar

3 eggs

14 oz. of Eagle Brand Milk

12 oz. of evaporated milk

1 tablespoon of vanilla

Preheat oven to 350. On low heat, melt sugar until liquid and golden browned. Pour into a 9 inch round pan or into an individual ramkins. Turn dish to coat sides and bottom. Set aside.

Beat eggs, then beat in milk and vanilla, beat until smooth.

Pour into the dish and baked covered with foil for 60 minutes. Cool before inverting on the serving plate.

Cherry Pie

2 - 9-inch double pie crust

4 tablespoons of tapioca (quick cooking)

1/8 teaspoon of salt

1 1/4 cup of sugar

4 cups of canned or fresh pitted cherries

1/4 teaspoon of almond extract

1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract

1 1/2 tablespoons of butter

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place bottom crust in pie pan. Set top crust aside.

In a large mixing bowl combine tapioca, salt, sugar, cherries and extracts. Let stand 15 minutes.

Turn out into bottom crust and dot with butter. Cover with top crust, flute the edges. Cut vents in the top

crust. Place pie on a cookie sheet. Bake for 50 minutes in the preheated oven or until browned and bubbly.

Peanut Butter Cookies

1 cup of peanut butter, creamy

1 1/3 cups of sugar or Splenda

1 egg

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a large baking sheet. In a mixing bowl, combine the peanut butter, 1 cup of the sugar, and egg. Add the vanilla. Stir well and roll dough into balls the size of walnuts. Place the balls on the prepared baking sheet. With a fork, dipped in sugar replacement to prevent sticking, press a crisscross design on each cookie. Bake for 12 minutes. Sprinkle the hot cookies with the rest of the sugar.

New York Cheesecake


1 1/2 cups of finely crushed graham crackers

1/4 cup of white sugar

1/3 cup of butter, melted


24 oz. of cream cheese, room temperature

4 eggs, room temperature

1 tablespoon of vanilla extract

1 cup of sugar

1 teaspoon of cream of tartar


1 pint of sour cream

1 teaspoon of vanilla

1/2 cup of sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix together the cracker crumbs, sugar and melted butter. Press into the bottom of a 9 inch spring form pan and two inches up the sides.

In a large bowl, mix together the cream cheese and sugar with an electric mixer until smooth. Blend in the eggs, one tablespoon of vanilla, cream of tartar. Pour into pie crust.

Bake in preheated oven for 50 minutes or until the center is set. Allow to cool on the counter for five minutes. Turn oven up to 400 degrees.

Mix together the sour cream, one teaspoon of vanilla and 1/2 cup of sugar in a bowl until smooth; carefully pour this over the cheesecake, starting at the sides and working toward the center.

Return to the oven and bake another 5 minutes, or until set. Cool in pan to room temperature. Refrigerate for 6 hours and then serve with your favorite topping or fresh strawberries or blueberries.

Old Fashioned Sugar Cookies

1 cup of butter

2 cups of sugar

2 eggs, well beaten

2 tablespoons of milk

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

3 cups of flour

2 teaspoons of baking powder

1/2 teaspoons of salt

Granulated sugar

Cream butter, and add sugar gradually. Add eggs, milk and vanilla, stir to blend. Combine the flour, baking powder and salt and sift. Gradually add to creamed mixture and mix thoroughly. Cover and refrigerate for four hours or overnight. Shape dough into 3/4 inch balls, place 2 inches apart on a greased baking sheet. Flatten with a bottom of a glass that's been greased and dipped in granulated sugar. Bake at 375 degrees for 9-10 minutes. Remove and cool on racks.

Blueberry Cream Cheese Pound Cake

1 package of yellow cake mix

3/4 oz. package of instant vanilla pudding mix

1/4 cup of white sugar

1/4 cup of water

3/4 cup of vegetable oil

3 eggs

8 oz. of cream cheese, softened

16.5 oz. can of blueberries, drained, juice reserved

1 cup of confectionary sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 10 inch bundt pan. In a large bowl, stir together cake mix, pudding mix, and sugar. Make a well in the center and pour in water, oil, eggs, and cream cheese. Beat on low speed until blended. Scrape bowl, and beat 4 minutes on medium speed. Stir in the blueberries. Pour batter into prepared pan.

Bake in a preheated oven for 50 -60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and cool completely.

Make a glaze by combining the one cup of confectionary sugar with two tablespoons of the reserved blueberry juicer. Drizzle over the cake.

Fruit Tart

1 9-inch pie crust, baked or graham cracker crust

1 - 4.6 oz. package of instant French vanilla pudding

2 cups of milk

Mix the above and pour onto the crust, one hour before serving. You can make the pudding the day before and the crust, just don't put them together until close the time to serve.

Slice up 1/2 cup of strawberries, 1/2 cup of sliced fresh peaches, 1/2 cup raspberries, one cup of sliced kiwi, 1/2 cup of blackberries and blueberries, set aside in the refrigerator. One hour before serving heat one cup of apple jelly in the microwave just long enough to break it down. Let it cool. Place pudding ontop of the crust, add fruit, and spread the jelly over the fruit as a glaze. Refrigerate until serving. This is really good but it is best to not do it ahead of time anymore than an hour or the crust will get soggy.

Oatmeal Peanut Butter Bars

3/4 cup of Bisquick

2 cups of quick cooking oats

1/2 cup of creamy peanut butter

1/2 cup of cinnamon applesauce

1/2 cup of raisins

1/2 cup of chocolate chips

1 egg

1/3 cup of honey

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix Bisquick, oats, and then add remaining ingredients. Line a baking dish with foil and then lightly spray the foil with cooking oil. Press batter in pan and bake for 25 minutes. When cool, lift the whole sheet of foil with bars out of the dish and cut into serving pieces.

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