Archive for Friday, September 23, 2011

40 years ago: Former Rock Chalk Cafe reopens

September 23, 2011


From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for Sept. 23, 1971:

The watering hole formerly known as the Rock Chalk Cafe had reopened under new management. The New Haven Cafe at 12th and Oread also had a new cereal malt beverage license. The city commission's granting of the new license had come in spite of a plea from County Attorney Mike Elwell that the city refuse to issue it. Elwell, appearing at the Commission meeting, warned those present that if the cafe were granted a license to sell beer, it would become "another hangout, another headquarters for drug dealers." City Manager Buford Watson was in agreement: "The police chief (Richard Stanwix) and Capt. (Merle) McClure both would recommend that you deny it if there's any way you can." However, the vote to issue the license was 4 to 0 with Mayor Bob Pulliam absent. Atty. Gen. Vern Miller assured the public that his agents would "frequent the establishment, and if there is any drug activity there, we will take action."


Tony Kisner 6 years, 2 months ago

Looks like 3.2 beer was a gateway drug. Bad beer!

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 2 months ago

Oh yes, I sure do remember Vern Miller and his Green Mountain Boys being discussed a lot. A few thought that Vern Miller was being a big shot in an attempt to become governor of the state of Kansas.

Once in 1972 or 1973, I was momentarily detained by one of the Green Mountain Boys in a dorm at Fort Hays State University, and he demanded that I produce identification. He checked a list, and I was not on it. So that was the end of the matter, for me at least. Later we all had quite a few things to discuss.

The next year, in Ellsworth Hall, I heard about something that happened on my dorm floor, the 5th, the previous semester. The Green Mountain Boys had made a raid at about 4:00 AM. One of them knocked on a door, and the suspect's roommate answered. Half asleep, he looked at the Green Mountain Boy, and said:

"You look like a squirrel."

Paul R Getto 6 years, 2 months ago

Used to work at the Chalk back in the day. It was funny when Vern and the boys came by. Also entertaining were the FBI dudes in their black suits, skinny black ties, white shirts and wingtips. They would wander around, first on the Frat Boy side, then on the "Hippie" side of the bar. "Hey, man, you got any dope for sale?" I don't they they made many buys. Vern would get people to turn us into the health department and we'd stay up all night cleaning so it could open in the morning. Good times, in a way. Too bad they tore all that history down to build a bunker that looks like a failed Bauhause project from the 1950's. BTW: The 'clean ups' were a joke as the Rock Chalk was as good as any. You can find a coachroach in any restaurant. In the rich places they just call them waterbugs.....sounds better.

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