Monthly Archives: June 2014

Teen Town Reunion

A & E

Concession counterThe Twist, the Mashed Potato, the Pony, the Watusi. Who can forget the dance crazes of the 1960s? 

Certainly not the teenagers who populated Teen Town in Martinez during those years. They will have a chance to resurrect the dance moves of their youth at a Teen Town Reunion this month.

Teen Town met off of Old Petersburg Road at Martinez Community Center, which currently is occupied by a tae kwon do studio, in the 1960s and early 1970s.

Teenagers would go to the popular hangout to see their friends and dance to live music or records played by DJs such as Handsome Harley Drew. A jukebox provided music on opening night, and The Dynamics entertained the teens the next two Saturday evenings.

“We paid 50 cents to get in every Saturday night. We just danced all night long,” says Susan Agner, a Martinez resident who is on the Reunion Committee. “People came from all over the area. It was open to anybody that wanted to come and behave themselves and have fun.”

Her mother, Nadine Moore, was one of the directors of Teen Town, which celebrated its grand opening in September 1963. “We had a cool mom, and she wanted to keep us out of trouble,” Susan says.

Teen Town also had a mayor, a clerk and a council, which was made up of five males and five females. The original office holders were Tommy Martin, mayor; Donna McGill, clerk; Brenda Mills, Gloria Coleman, Becky Yarbrough, Priscilla Shelton and Peggy Lamm, girls’ council; and Jack Fair, Sammy Jones, Bill Murphey, Chris Hand and Danny Newman, boys’ council.

“We ran the council like a business,” says Martin, who served as mayor from 1963 until 1965. “We had meetings about bands and DJs, and we made plans for what we were going to do.”

Concessions were sold to pay for the DJs, and of course, chaperones kept a close eye on the teens – even if “all of the guys just stood around,” as Martin, who lives in Appling, says.

“We liked having a place to go and something to do,” he says. “It was something to look forward to on a Saturday night.”

The Reunion Committee members hope their old friends are looking forward to the chance to get together again as well. People are coming from as far away as Arizona to attend.

“It’s a very important part of my life because back in the ’60s, we were a small community. It was like everyone was family,” Agner says.

If You Go:
What: Teen Town Reunion
When: 7 p.m. – 11 p.m. Saturday, June 21
Where: Elks Lodge, 205 Elkdom Court, Augusta
How Much: $25; all remaining proceeds will be donated to the Wounded Warrior Project
More Info: Call Susan Agner at (706) 833-6752 or visit the Martinez Teentown Reunion
Facebook page

Cheesesteak Sandwich

  • Cheesesteak Sandwich1 large garlic clove, cut in half

  • 1 pound boneless beef top sirloin steak (3/4-inch thick)

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper

  • 1 medium green pepper
  • 1 small yellow onion
  • 4 (6-inch) torpedo rolls, split

  • 8 slices Provolone cheese, quartered

  • Non-stick spray for grill

Rub garlic over steak and season both sides with salt and pepper. Spray grate of outdoor grill and utensils with spray for grilling. Preheat grill to medium heat. Cut green pepper lengthwise in half and remove seeds and stem.
 Cut onion into 1/4-inch thick slices.
 Place green pepper and onion on heated grill and cook uncovered 10-12 minutes or until pepper is slightly blacked and onion is tender, turning once. Set onion aside. Place green pepper in plastic bag and let stand until skin loosens and cool enough to handle. Peel skin from pepper and cut it and onion into thin strips. Grill steak uncovered 13-16 minutes for medium rare, turning occasionally. Remove from grill and keep warm. Place rolls on grill and toast until golden. Carve steak into thin slices, place on rolls and top with green peppers, onions and Provolone. Makes 4.


Star Search

A & E

Amateur SeriesThe search for talent is returning this summer with the third annual Columbia County Amateur Series, but this year the popular contest will have a different format.

The time frame has been condensed to four sessions in three consecutive days in July, and the competition categories have changed slightly as well. Contestants, who must be at least 16 years old, can compete in four categories – solo musician, solo non-musician, band and other types of entertainment such as dance.

Applications to enter the competition will be accepted until June 1, and those who are chosen to audition will be notified by Friday, June 6.

The winners of each category will receive $250, and the grand finale winner will receive $1,000 and the opportunity to audition for the producers of “The Voice” or “America’s Got Talent.”

“The winners just get better and better,” says Calie Cook, administrative coordinator for the county rental facilities and venues department. “We want to put Columbia County on the map as a place that supports artists and helps people fulfill their dreams.”

If You Go:
What: Columbia County Amateur Series
When: 7:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. Thursday, July 10 and Friday, July 11; 3 p.m. – 6 p.m. Saturday, July 12; finale will be 7:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. Saturday, July 12
Where: Columbia County Exhibition Center 
How Much: Free
More Info: (706) 868-3349 or

Sleep Under the Stars

A & E

Buzz-campoutUnplug and head outside. That’s the idea behind National Wildlife Federation’s annual Great American Backyard Campout, which will take place across the country on Saturday, June 28.

The annual event encourages people of all ages to camp in their backyards, neighborhoods, parks and campgrounds as a way to reconnect with nature.

“Kids need to experience camping, especially in their youth when the wonders of the outdoors can influence their future love for nature and wildlife,” says Maureen Smith, of the federation. “Being in nature also helps to burn off energy, stay fit and be mentally focused.”

To help you head out into the great outdoors well prepared, the campout website has packing lists, recipes, nocturnal wildlife guides, exploration activities, nature games and other advice. For more information visit