AUSTIN COMMUNITY BUILDING
I recently came across this old postcard in a box of my my mom's photos and just had to write a little something about the "hub" of the little community where I went to school. I actually lived 3 miles south of Austin in even a smaller little town, but Austin was where things "happened." There wasn't much on Main Street, but there was a drug store, hardware, beauty shop, grocery store, liquor store, post office, diner, beer joint, and 2 gas stations for purchasing gasoline and car repairs. There were also 3 churches in town. In the old days, before my time, there was a doctor and even a hospital and also a bank. Now there is a new bank branch there.
This building was the main attraction in the community. It housed the one and only theatre, where I saw every cowboy and Indian movie there was back in those days. Every Friday night was movie night for us kids. Commencement exercises were also held on the theatre stage for many years. The bowling alleys (two lanes only) were located in this building, as well. For a small town, there were even bowling leagues, and everyone knew everyone! It was really quite the social gathering place. Upstairs, there was the basketball court, which our school used for many years for high school games. Also, dances were held upstairs on the court floor, as well as the high school proms. Then, finally, a beautiful new school for all 12 grades was built and opened in the Fall of 1959. Once we were in high school, we still drove uptown to the community building's Snack Bar for lunch most days. My Grandma always told me that my Grandpa (who died when my Mom was just 8 years old) had helped build it. Oh, the memories of so many fun times we had there in that building!
Now this beautiful old building has been replaced by a new Fire Hall. The people there are hard to beat anywhere! I have lived in different areas of our country, but I have never found the closeness anywhere that this little town offers. People help people there, always lending a helping hand to those who need it. People really care about their friends and neighbors there. This little town survived a fire and two floods in the olden days, too. It's just too tough a town to die! They have a really wonderful Fire Department and Rescue Squad, and a few years ago a replica of the founder's home was built, which houses the history and memorabilia of the community. I am very proud that I attended school there and grew up in such a wonderful area! If only all kids could be as fortunate!