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New Yorks Past.....I'm feeling nostalgic today

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That former Cleveland Indians great Bob Feller was a commercial spokesman for Chock-Full-O'Nuts coffee in this area for many years. It was humorous when the TV station would run a Mr. Coffee spot featuring Joe DiMaggio, back to back with the Chock-Full-O'nuts one.

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Ah, the ghosts of retail past (New York/New Jersey edition). Korvette's, Alexander's, Klein's...I spent much of my youth, and a goodly portion of my allowance, in those stores. Let's not forget Times Square Stores, WT Grant, and Kresge's (before they became Kmart).

Growing up in Richmond Hill, we used to go to Jamaica to do the bulk of our department store shopping, and Gertz (or "Goitz", as my Brooklyn-born grandmother would call it) was the biggest and fanciest store we had ever seen. Macy's? The only one we went into was a small, 2-level store on 164th Street that only sold clothes...bor-ing! Sears? They were an appliance store on Hillside Avenue.

One of my neighbors worked for Gertz. Back when stores were actually closed on Sundays, he used to take us along with his daughter to the annual Christmas party for the employees' kids. We'd meet Santa, get hot dogs, ice cream and cake, then we would be allowed to go through the Fairy Tale Village before it officially opened for the season. They had scenes from different fairy tales represented by animated mannequins. Of course, in a stroke of marketing genius, they had this set up at the back of the store on the 6th floor, and you had to pass through the fine china and crystal to get there. I wonder how many parents sweated bullets as Johnny and Mary made a bee-line through the Lenox and Waterford to see Little Miss Muffett.

Well, I guess I'd better hop back on the B56 bus and head back down Jamaica Avenue in further pursuit of my youth...

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That former Cleveland Indians great Bob Feller was a commercial spokesman for Chock-Full-O'Nuts coffee in this area for many years. It was humorous when the TV station would run a Mr. Coffee spot featuring Joe DiMaggio, back to back with the Chock-Full-O'nuts one.

Let's not forget the great Page Morton Black who sang that legendary jingle for years on radio and television. She was the wife of Bill Black who owned the company. Any New Yorker over 35 can sing that jingle along with the one for WNEW-AM.

PageMortonBlack.jpg

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Yep..used to go to the two guys store in Neptune

Regards,Dave

Small world, We've probably crossed paths. That is the Two-Guys we shopped at all the time, being Neptune is my home town!

We really loved the huge Two-Guys in Manalapan. If i remember correctly, it was one of the 1st "super stores". Had a grocery & a liquor store connected.

*And on the Macy /Bambergers topic:

I thought Bambergers was always a division of Macy's. And that they later just decided to simplify by doing away with the Bambegers name ( i could be wrong, just something I always had taken for granted). We shopped at the Bambergers in Monmouth Mall all the time. As we did Alexanders (was previously a Montg. ward and later became a Caldors), Kresge's (later turned into a McCrory's), Abraham and Straus (after the mid seventies expansion of the mall), now no longer exists either, and don't know what has taken it's place. Probably a Lord and Taylor?

*and on Chock Full o Nuts:

Here in Oklahoma, that coffee is very difficult to find on grocer shelves. But it is available. Cains Coffee distributes it here for us. We used to have to pick it up in Wichita Ks when up there. It's our families favorite coffee.

Now if we can just get good hard rolls, Drakes Cakes, Tasty Cakes and Pork Roll (I want a whirlybird!) out here, I'd be livin' large!

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Hey Rocket Thrower, remember those big Ring Dings? I think they only make the Jr's. now. And pork roll - I had an Uncle who retired to Mexico. Every time I visited him I had to bring in Taylor Ham and Gravy Master! His Mexican neighbors didn't get it. I am not sure I did either.

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Taylor's is the BEST Porkroll. Reminds me...time for some online food shopping soon!

Pokroll Xpress sells online and orderdc.com takes care of Drakes Cake orders. It costs, but it sure is worth it when you want it bad enough. Now if I can find an outlet for tastyCakes, Arnold Bread and some great Jersey baked Hard Rolls!

I remember the big Ring Dings! Weren't they the ones marketed with a big Indian Chief on the box? I remember once inside the box, they were wrapped in good ole aluminum foil. Are Ring Dings Drakes or Tasty Cake? I can't recall. I am a HUGE Devil Dog guy myself!

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I wondered who sang the Chock Full O'Nuts jingle. I clearly remember it from the late 1950's and early 1960's. What I also remember is the that same individual returned to sing the jingle on NYC television stations in a series of advertisements in the 1980's. She was clearly much older and did not quite fit the image any longer, but there she was and the she could still sing her hymn to that coffee.

And remembering things long gone: I recall when WOR in NYC (when it was still located there) ran a daily movie called "The Flick." (This was in the mid-1960's.) WOR ws the only station I ever came across which ran a single movie three or four times a day for several days. I gather they were on a short budget in those days.

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My friends brother worked for Chock Full of Nuts for a few years in the late 90's. He tried to get them to bring Page back again to do the famous jingle. They said they wanted a younger image and to not dwell in the past. This despite the fact that Page was a NY celebrity whose name was still in the society pages for all her charity works and parties she attends. She is always listed as "that Chock Full of Nuts Gal" Page Morton-Black or "Coffee Legend" Page Morton-Black. She brings them free publicity all the time, a few years ago she was performing at the Parkinsons Disease benefit at the Waldorf Astoria and it said the audience kept screaming for her to do the Chocks jingle and when she did it brought the house down. Sad isn't it though that she's considered old hat by young executives.

<!--coloro:#FF0000--><span style="color:#FF0000"><!--/coloro-->I just found this<!--colorc--></span><!--/colorc-->

Singer to be honored for work against Parkinson’s

LEN MANIACE

May 18, 2005(The Journal News) - Though she sang and played the piano in New York hotels, and more recently has chaired the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation, Page Morton Black will always be remembered for the radio and television jingle she recorded decades ago.

"Yes, I will always be known as the Chock full o’Nuts woman," Black, a longtime New Rochelle resident, said in an interview yesterday.

Tomorrow night, however, Black will be remembered for more than singing a coffee jingle — she will be honored by the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation with its Lifetime Achievement Award.

The honor is part of the organization’s annual fundraiser at the Pierre Hotel on Fifth Avenue, where Black — then Page Morton — met her future husband, William Black, in the early 1960s, while she played piano and sang in the hotel cafe.

No only did that meeting lead to marriage to the founder and head of Chock full o’Nuts, it soon brought her a gig singing the praises of "the heavenly coffee. Better coffee a millionaire’s money can’t buy."

Though most people who remember the commercial recall only her rendition, Black said, she was actually the second vocalist. The first was Black’s second wife.

William Black founded the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation to fund research in 1957 after the company’s chief accountant was stricken with the disease.

"They couldn’t play tennis, and he thought they would be able to come up with a quick cure," Page Morton Black recalled. "But even today there is no cure, but they have made progress."

In taking over as the foundation’s chair in 1991, Black has appointed high-profile board members including Isobel Konecky, wife of show-business lawyer Ronald Konecky, and Alma Rangel, wife of Rep. Charles Rangel, D-Manhattan, and is producing the organization’s annual fundraiser.

"I started helping when my husband was alive, but too sick to go to the meetings," Black recalled. "I want to help people. I’m really anxious to help."

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I remember the 80s revival ads, and I'm sure she could do a better job than that hideous rap/ R&B singer does on the current radio ad (where "millionaire" has now in a concession to inflation become "billionaire").

Chock Full O'Nuts also got a lot of publicity in the late 50s when Jackie Robinson went to work for them after retiring from baseball.

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Check out this great picture of Chock executive Jackie Robinson visiting one of the Brooklyn stores. Look at those prices

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While we're on the subject of nostalgia:

<a href="http://www.lileks.com/index.html" target="_blank">http://www.lileks.com/index.html</a>

Just found this site a few days ago.....really funny and quite wonderful!

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I work in Garden City and nearby at the Home Depot Expo is a Chock Full o' Nuts Express. They still carry the famous date nut bread and creme cheese. It's still as tasty as ever

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Small world, We've probably crossed paths. That is the Two-Guys we shopped at all the time, being Neptune is my home town!

We really loved the huge Two-Guys in Manalapan. If i remember correctly, it was one of the 1st "super stores". Had a grocery & a liquor store connected.

*here, I'd be livin' large!

I used to shop for fishing gear in Two Guys with my dad.Especially the Neptune fishing rods.Nothing like buying a Neptune fishing pole in Neptune,NJ and bringing in those fluke and flounder.

Regards,Dave

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Does anyone remember Lafayette? I used to buy all my stereo equipment from them. See the part of the ad with the components package for $269.50? I still have those decorette thin speakers and am using them in my den. They have unbelievable clear sound. My father bought them in 1965, so they are forty years old. Amazing how well made things lasted.

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I sure do remember Lafayette. I bought whatever I could on an allowance. They had some good stuff. Then one day they were gone. I still remember where there store was in Valley Stream.

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Does anyone remember Lafayette? I used to buy all my stereo equipment from them. See the part of the ad with the components package for $269.50? I still have those decorette thin speakers and am using them in my den. They have unbelievable clear sound. My father bought them in 1965, so they are forty years old. Amazing how well made things lasted.

Yep...they had a Lafayette store in Newark too.The one located in Syosett NY came my first Starlite Walkie Talkies.

Later a Lafayette Ha-150 cb transciever"pictures shown".Now your talking my field.I found this picture of it on the internet last year.

Bill I dont remember the store in Valley Stream.Of course I had an allowance too and I did drive then either

Dave

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I still have a few gadgets from the Lafayette store, as well as from the Aliied Radio store around the corner, in Rockford, Illinois, when I lived there 35 years ago. I also ordered several items from the catalog when I moved away from Rockford.

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The Valley Stream store was near where the LIRR crosses over Sunrise Hwy, on the south side of Sunrise. We used to ride our bikes there from Baldwin. I hate to think of that in today's traffic.

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In Lubbock, Texas, where I grew up, Radio Shack was a corner in the Tandy Store. Tandy was a store that sold hobby stuff like make your own wallet kits and wood burning sets. I think Tandy owned Radio Shack. That and Wayne's Records were my 2 big hang outs......and of course every single movie theater in town...we had a bunch.

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Lafayette, in Lowell, Massachusetts was where I bought my first microphone and mic stand. Later became a Radio Shack and still is today... in the very same location.

Off topic, but very cool side note: The General, Marquis de Lafayette and his entourage stopped and "dined on roasted turkey and libations" in the house I grew up in. It was, at the time, Richard Pattee's tavern, built in 1804 on the "new" highway that connected the state capitols of Boston, MA and Concord, NH. The highway (now NH Route 28) was originally the Londonderry Turnpike, a toll road.

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