Monday, June 13, 2011

Myra's Ice Cream - Valdese, North Carolina

This is Myra's Ice Cream in Valdese, North Carolina. With the neon signs, and REAL ice cream, you know, the kind you actually have to scoop, this is the Americana which Rick Lassiter was driving at in his book and documentary film "Our Vanishing Americana."

Talking with some of the local residents, who are longtime inhabitants of the town, you find that back in 1958, when Myra's first opened as a Tastee Freeze, this was the place to go on Friday nights. Myra's is like the typical malt shop you see in "American Graffiti", or the malt shop in "Happy Day's." The only difference is that this is the real thing. If only the walls could talk, they would tell tales of ducktails, bobby socks, hot rods and kids going steady. The juke box is new, but I bet the old one had better music. The Platters, Elvis, Shangri-La's, Chuck Berry, Little Richard, The Mills Brothers, have all passed through this place. You can almost hear it.

Sue, and I, were up in Valdese yesterday, it's about 70 miles from our house, to look about the historical town, which was founded by a sect of Christians who were persecuted in Northwestern Italy for their beliefs. First settled in 1895, the town is a beautiful example of the era in which it was founded. Miraculously, it has survived all the urban renewal and big box stores that line the Inetersate, which runs nearby. It's a long way to go for a malt, but the pleasure of stepping back in time is worth the trip. Don't I look happy?

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