It felt like traveling to Fayetteville and back was a journey back in the day for my old man & me. Living in HSV, my old man would wake me up on game day at 330AM, knowing I would toss and turn in bed for 20 minutes. I would hit the shower by 4AM. The “drop dead” time to be out the door was 455AM, and if I didn’t have Red on, I had to go back inside and change. 5AM we were on the road up highway 7. I would fall asleep, but by the time we hit Dardenelle, I would be fully awake. BTW, Skyline road from highway 7 to cutoff Russelville in it’s entirety to hit I-40 will save you 10-25 minutes. Highway marker 78 to head up I-40 was the entrance. My pops and I would roll into Fayetteville around 830’ish AM, and go straight to the Hilton on the square for him to hit up the bathroom, and us to hit up the breakfast buffet. After hitting up the breakfaast buffet on the square, he always insisted in parking at Fayetteville High; he was a proud graduate there in class of 1956. My old man grew up in Fayetteville in the early 1940s on. I didn’t necessarily mind the walk; we would always go up California street, and my pops ALWAYS would point out the place he rented back in the 1950’s, which back then apparenly the band director lived next door to him. We would get into Razorback Stadium into our seats on the lower East side, 40yrd line, which I miss that view. This was prior to the upper deck, jumbo TV’s, etc…
We would get a Coke each, a bag of peanuts, 1 bag of popcorn, and call the Hogs as loud as possible. If the game was getting out of hand in the oponent’s favor, my old man was notorious of walking out of games early. Ask me about Miracle on Markham I
After each game, we would hike back to his mini-van. It always pissed me off as a kid then because the walk back to Fayetteville High was uphill the whole way. We would get into the vehicle and hit the road back to HSV, arriving home by earliest 11PM. If I were lucky, I could convince my pops to stop at Mr. Burger for at least a fully loaded double burger with cheese & a large onion rings covered in chili and cheese. If not, no worries, because he and I took in some of the best memories of my lifetime.
I want to hear other folks stories on coming to the Hill for a game/the gameday experience. Feel free to chime in folks, and don’t hold back.
I only went to two games before I enrolled at UA – one at WMS, one at RRS (and neither one was a night game; nothing was going to get in the way of going to church Sunday morning). I remember the traffic crawling over the Boston Mountain on the way up 71 to that one Fayetteville game. And I remember Dickey Morton running the ball despite his helmet having come off, and that we won. And that we got tacos at Senor Bob’s on College after the game. That’s about it. We must have left home by 7:30 a.m. to get to that Fayetteville game but I have no memory of that.
I was never taken to Razorback games as a kid … for two primary reasons:
My parents weren’t really Razorback fans.
My parents simply couldn’t afford such frivolous expenditures.
However, I did get to see several seasons worth of games in WMS when selling concessions for my boy scout troop as a fundraising venture (1977-80 seasons).
I absolutely loved the atmosphere of the games; probably had a lot to do with why I attended the UofA years later. That … and a full academic ride!
I thought that “helmet cart” they drove around on the field, pre-game, and later, the much-smaller remote-controlled “helmet buggy” were the coolest things ever.
My two prevailing memories of selling concessions up in the stands?
I was always amazed how stupid-drunk some of the fans got throughout the games.
I could make a king’s ransom in tips by lugging 20-coke racks up to the highest rows. (And d.a.m.n those steps up near the crow’s nest were steep, steep, steep.)
I didn’t attend any games before I attended the UofA in the fall of 1970. I followed the team, but didn’t attend. I was at the SMU game that year when Bill McClard kicked a then record 60 yard FG. BTW, the wind was blowing a gale that day.
In the mid-80s Daddy got tickets and that began my regular attendance at games. Early on, we used to go to Fuzzy’s to eat before games. The owner Mike (aka Fuzzy) is married to my cousin. We enjoyed talking to him and he saved Daddy’s bacon once when Daddy left our tickets at home in Bella Vista. Mike gave us his tickets and it was lucky because they were under cover. That was a game vs. Tulsa when it poured so hard that you could barely see the far sideline.
A few years later we began going to the Web Hogs tailgate. Tuschawg (Fred) and Jan were the first people that we met. They were among the many who welcomed us and made Daddy a part of the festivities. I’m sure that I will leave out many who made us welcome, but I will note AZhawg and the USC fan (Jim and Sylvia), MalvernHog (Nick), RickB, ComiskeyPork (Don), Gage, ColoradoHog (Jim), and many, many more. It was quite the introduction to many who are still friends.
We lived in Batesville and then Pine Bluff growing up. That said, I never attended a game in Fayetteville until 7th grade.
My fandom is the result of magical Saturday nights at War Memorial Stadium.
Attended many games there before ever going to Fayetteville.
I grew up in Pine Bluff and attended my first game at WMS probably around 1961. My dad’s Uncle James took me. I’ll never forget walking through the tunnel and seeing the field. It was magic. My first game in Fayetteville was in the 70’s. Throughout the 80’s and 90’s we never missed a game at WMS. Tailgated in front of Ray Windor for most of those years. My 2 daughters grew up going to games with us. Wonderful memories.
Being an Eastarkie, I only attended Little Rock games. That Fayetteville place was clear on the other side of the state and involved dangerous mountain roads to get there. However, I did get to go to Fayetteville for homecoming against the aggies in 1968 or 69. I vividly remember the color and beauty of the pig trail, stopping in Elkins for a shake-n-bake chicken dinner at the high school, and seeing Razorback Stadium for the first time. I remember all the creative homecoming decorations at the frat houses, and all the pagentry of homecoming. Hogs won big and we drove back home after the game. All in all, a magical day.
Going to Fayetteville was magical (still is). I made all of the LR games by hook or crook after I got my driver’s license. Fayetteville was a hole nother trip and I loved every min. of it. It always involved taking the Pig Trial. We packed food and drinks for the trip. Fayetteville was magical with all those people moving into town. Did not have any special tickets. Seems we often sat low on the E side. I would wonder around campus and loved it. There was never any doubt where I was going to college.
It would take to much time and room, but I remember the trip in 1965 to see the Texas game. Every minute of that day is still etched in my memory. God, those were special times! 4:23 LEFT. JON TO BOBBY DOWN THE FIELD MY BELOVED HOGS CAME TOWARD ME ON THE S. END. SO VERY, VERY SPECAIL!
You know, a special thing we did as my kids were growing up was to walk down the walk by the library and look at my name. The N has a chip out of it. Silly I know, but special as well. I bet many of you have done the same thing. Sr. walk is a very neat tradition.
Same for me, we must’ve worked a lot of the same games. Didn’t go to a game in Fay until an FCA trip in high school.
Grew up in LR, and there was nothing special about going to games in WMS. Same as now, you’d probably never know there was a game in town unless you went to it.
Fayetteville was always a different story. You were greeted by a caravan of cars headed west on I-40 with signs of “Go Hogs Beat XXXXX” taped to their windows.
If it was September or November, we took old HWY 71 from Alma. We’d always stop at the lookouts and the old fire tower for a quick climb. But if October, it was the Pig Trail north from Ozark. I can still feel the warmth of those leaves changing colors in the cool air even now.
Dad was in the engineering school, and a member of Theta Tau. We always parked in the yard of their house on Cleveland St., right across from Reid Hall. I remember walking around campus with my parents, being shown all the buildings of their classrooms and the cafeterias.
There weren’t a ton of rooms to stay in, so many trips were up and back in the same day. If headed back, we always tried to squeeze in a stop at The D-Lux or ROTC on Dickson. If we were able to stay the night, we always headed to Tontitown for Venesian Inn or Mary Maestri’s. There’s a reason we still get our rolls for Thanksgiving dinner from Venesian to this day, and it’s the memories I have eating those as a young boy on a football weekend.
Oh yes, Venetian Inn Rolls are the best and even better on Saturday after a Hog win.
My first memory was of a Fayetteville game, about 1960 and we played Texas. Lance Alworth was playing then and being about seven, not sure I remember much about the game, but do remember staying at some Motor Court across from the Daisy plant in Rogers. Also remember Highway 412 across the top of the state especially between Yellville and Huntsville had some creeks with low-water bridges. I also remember making many trips and driving to Harrison or Mountain Home to spend the night at a Holiday Inn. The lake still had a ferry crossing and did through my college years. You drove like mad to get a better position on the ferry, so slow traffic would not keep you from making great speed!
Most vivid memories were Little Rock games, during 60’s and 70’s there were a lot of good games at War Memorial. A friend of ours got my parents in at the Markham Inn, so we were in the middle of the action. The restaurant there was really good, introduced to clam chowder there, but seems most everything was good there.
Little Rock atmosphere was great in the 60’s and 70’s! Markham Inn, Black Angus, tailgating all over the place. Bud Campbell’s voice coming across thousands of transistor radios. You couldn’t be anywhere in The Rock and not know that it was game day!
Little Rock was great as kid because they had lights and played at night.
Seems like every game I attended in Fayetteville as a young kid, it was always misty rainy and cold and those seats were even colder.
Dang, Keith, you are old, lol. My car lot is where that motor inn across from Daisy used to be in Rogers. I’ve been there 29 years.
He ain’t as old as me. I think I have Keith beat. The name of the place where Jeremy’s lot is located was called the Town & Country Motor Court. This is where my Dad and I stayed from 1959 through 1967. I was 8 in 1959.
There was no interstate in those early years. Coming from Little Rock, Dad would get on Highway 10 through Perryville and then took a bunch of back roads I can’t remember. We would end up on 71 and would eat breakfast at Burn’s Gables. Always packed with Hog fans.
I don’t remember many of the games but I can remember those road trips with Dad like they happened yesterday.
And yes we liked Mary Maestri’s (rarely) and the Venesian Inn (often), I can remember those huge thin cut steaks and substituting spaghetti for the taters. And oh yes… onion rings and the rolls.
But, my Dad’s favorite place was Heine’s Steakhouse. He liked the vintage steak with all the trimmings. Heck, Heine’s hasn’t been in existence for over 30 years but it was a great place.
Neat thing about my Dad. He was a banker and always had great tickets. He always had extra when we showed up in Fayetteville. You think he probably sold them in the parking lot, right? Not my Dad. He would walk among all the kids who usually clustered around the stadium and find some who had never been inside Razorback Stadium and would treat them to their first Hog game. Cool dude my Dad.
Yes, he was a cool dude. Great story Pav. The Venesian Inn is one of my all time favorite restaurants. Love it.
I will write a full column for a future Hawgs Illustrated on going to a game with my dad as a youngster.
It was normal for me but I now know it was hardly normal. Part of it was my mom frying two whole chickens (she cut up) on Friday night. We ate them on a pull out on the Pig Trail above Cass.
I have much more detail on those trips including going up for Saturday scrimmages. That was no different than games. Same routine.
Actually, the Town and Country is still there. It just isn’t directly in front of the Daisy plant where my lot is. Unfortunately, there are far too many ambulances going in there these days. They rent rooms by the day or week these days, and the pool is just a hole in the ground that hasn’t been opened in years.
The Venesian Inn was always a treat for my family, but I haven’t been there since my beloved Grandma died in 94. Just not the same without her.