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Growing up in Bandera

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Although I am often asked about my favorite memory of growing up here in Bandera, I just can’t pick one. If you have followed my shared tales over the last several years, you can see my dilemma.

It would be like trying to pick a favorite puppy out of a new liter of Chihuahuas. I have favorite stories of people, places and things that contributed to my life story.

Some younger folks like to recall their teen years hanging out at Zeke’s on Main Street. Older generations remember when the Chicken Shack occupied that location. And just across Mulberry, you may recall seeing First State Bank before Norwest and then Wells Fargo took over.

I can still visualize an empty lot with only a round, concrete tank that was located along the Main Street side which we called the artesian well. It was the designated north end turning around spot when dragging Main.

The south end Main Street turning point was where the Bandera Bank parking lot is above the river bridge, coming in from Hondo. The bridge crossing was a lot lower back then, and there was a Western Auto or liquor store in the parking lot area at the top of the hill, depending on the time period you recall.

If you go back a little further in time, you would find the Post Office before it moved over by the courthouse, where you can now order egg rolls with your chow mein.

Sally Lewis, Winnie Hicks and Joe King are names associated with my high school years in Bandera. Marvin C. Schnelle was the superintendent who also taught the bookkeeping class I took, while attending BHS.

What are the chances that would happen in current times?

Joe Studebaker was the athletic director/head football coach and a math teacher during those years. My association with Telvy Robbins and Coach John Wilton went way beyond my school years, and continue to provide cherished memories for me.

Banking was a whole different world back in the day. The bank president at The First State Bank in Bandera was Burgin Davenport, and he gave me my first auto loan of $500 so I could purchase a ‘58 Chevy.

At that time, the bank was located between what is now The General Store and The Cowboy Store on Main Street. Unlike today, everyone at the bank greeted me with, “Hi, Glenn.” Currently, where my wife banks, the first greeting is, “Do you have an account with us?”

I do some separate banking at a place where at least there are some familiar faces I have seen around for years in Bandera.

Time, people and places pass on as I continue my “Growing up in Bandera” journey.

I have lots of friends and a few partners in crime who have shared many of my experiences along the way, but we have all mellowed considerably in our advanced years.

Probably a good thing too, as I’m sure my high school running buddy and longtime friend Richard Kinsey would agree.