Mike Taylor tells some good stories from that era. For you military folk, Mike was West Point Army while his step-brother Terry Grindstaff was Navy (possibly Coast Guard). I was disappointed than neither waited for me to grow up. Mom says that the brothers had never been around little kids and were horrified when I shucked my clothes and ran naked outside. Mom also tells a story about my brother putting a dead bird (probably from the parking lot) in his pocket for her to find later while doing laundry. My brother and I have lots of memories from this place - It was a wonderful place to live.
My recollections are a bit different than the postcard. The lodge later had a rail around the porch and more chairs on the porch including a long metal glider that I loved. Often I would be gliding one minute and waking up from a nap the next. The lodge also had logs in the parking lot to keep people from pulling up too far, and if I remember correctly, the sign was moved from pole to the porch roof. Keep in mind that any and all logs or railings were part of our play equipment. The window to the right was my mom's beauty shop. It had been two guest rooms, but Dad converted them to the beauty shop, which he had bought from Eunice Chambles (sp?). The other side of the downstairs was a large lobby with a rock fireplace and lots of couches and chairs, which was great for snuggling in or playing hide-and-seek. Behind the lobby was a one bedroom apt with a living area and kitchen. All the cabinets were homemade and the walls were pine. I learned to cook eggs on the old gas stove. It was here in the living area that we watched men walk on the moon in July of 1969. Upstairs there were eight rooms with bathrooms between them - it was a sharing experience. We learned to make a bed military tight here. The stairs were another playground. When cleaning the guestrooms, we would often throw the dirty bed clothes and towels down the stairs, which made a wonderful slide. When it was cold in the winter, my brothers and I would set at the top of the stairs where the warm air rose. The upstairs window on the right was room #2 where my brothers and I slept - most of the time. And yes, we did occasionally climb out on the porch roof.
To the other side of the lodge (just outside the photo) was the laundry. Here is my brother's description: this was my parents' lodge, some years before we owned it. To the left (outside
the frame) was a small building on the property with around 20 coin operated
washing machines and 6 or 8 coin-operated dryers and a few commercial sized
machines for doing laundry for businesses. We added a room to the front of the
laundry with my 4 pinball machines, a counter for Lou and I to make change and
sell nicknacks, and my shoe-shine stand. Behind the laundry was a storehouse we
called the Fox Pit, and it was later converted to a room without water that we
rented to Ray (Wylie) Hubbard and Rick Fowler, who sang for tips and food at the
café across the street. I would shine their boots several times a week. The Fox
Pit was later converted to 2 public shower rooms for campers.
His version works well. I would add that the laundry became the place to hang for our friends. Can you just imagine, "Bye Mom, I'm headed down to the laundromat."
Behind the lodge was several outbuildings. One was what was referred to as The Patio. It was actually enclosed on three sides with screens windows across the south side of the building. Inside was chaos - a catch-all for old furniture. It was crowded with old tables and chairs and other stuff. If you ever wonder where the Outpost got most of its furniture, it would be The Patio. In the middle of the Patio was a two-sided brick fireplace/grill. I can remember cooking smores with some guests at the lodge. There was also a full working kitchen in The Patio. With all of that junk, it was another great place to play. In later years, I remember sunbathing on top of many of the out-buildings along with my "summer sisters" - the college girls who roomed at the lodge and worked in Red River for the summer.
Behind The Patio was the horse stables and beside the laundry was Bitter Creek. Yep, those were great play places too. In fact, all of Red River was my playground. That was the way it was back in the day.