October 31 was always first day it would snow. It made it difficult to wear any Halloween Costumes that weren’t warm. It got dark early and there were certain places were you could trick or treat and get candy quickly and be home before the heavy snow. Later, it became much more fun to trick or treat with friends and then go to their houses afterward and lay out all of our candy to see how many of each thing we got.
Mostly Halloween was just a cold, dark and often snowy night in the mountains.
My Grandma Bake lived on a farm in Oregon.
I got to go there in the summer time to visit. When, I was just five years old, I took a plane there all by myself. A woman name Rita who worked at Atkinson’s Market gave me a gift the day before and she said I couldn’t open it until I got on the plane. Of course, I couldn't wait to get on the plane. I sat down, got buckled in and opened the gift. It was a boy doll, that I can still picture, dressed in blue just like how I looked when I dressed up as a clown.
My Grandma picked me up at the airport and we went to her farm. She worked, so very early she would drop me off at my Aunt Donna’s house. My Aunt Donna worked nights so she was home during the day. She’d be tired, so I’d watch t.v. a big treat for me after growing up without one. She would eventually wake up and we would drive to pick blackberries on the side of the road and return to her small, crowded house to make black berry jam. The smell and the warmth of the jam would fill the air in the house and the one hot spoonful my Aunt would let me try, was the best. It would burn my the tip of my tongue and melt in my mouth. It was more sugar than I had ever been given to eat all in one bite.
I’d spend the day with my Aunt Donna and then my Grandma would pick me up and we’d go back to the farm. The farm had been a place for my Grandma to raise her three younger kids. They’d had summer jobs picking strawberries, they raised horses and sheep and turkeys there. They’d mowed the lawn and slept in the barn. And they grew up there. My Aunt Donna had also lived there, when she too had lost her husband and was alone to raise two boys. Now, the farmhouse just had me and my grandma in it. It felt big and empty to me especially when I had to go all the way upstairs alone to sleep in one of the bedrooms. Sometimes, my Uncle Don, the youngest son, was there and slept in the other room, but he was much older than me (12 years). I felt safe when he was there. He liked to watch the Little Rascals and cartoons with me on Saturday mornings. And, he would occasionally put me up on one of the horses for a ride.
At the Farm, as we all called it, I found my love for farm animals. My grandmother had a sheep that my mom said used to come into the kitchen and when I was a baby. She remembers me being in a high chair and the sheep would try to eat things off my tray. My grandma recorded a cassette tape for me of the animal sounds so my mom could play it for me when I returned to Idaho. I returned to the farm year after year. I remember one day I was walking down in the pasture and there was a sheep out there and I didn’t pay much attention to it. Suddenly, I woke up on the ground with the sheep looking down at me. It had come over and rammed me and completely knocked me out. Later, when it got to be too much for my Grandma to take care of, my Uncle Jon (her oldest son) would exchange houses with her so he could raise his son Brant on a farm. His family had lived in a neighborhood in Tualatin in a one story house, which would be a perfect place for my Grandma to live for many years to come. It was on Blake street and I still remember how to get there.
My Uncle Jon loved living on the farm. He raised turkeys, chickens, pigs and other animals there. I remember going with him one day to pick up some baby pigs. I was excited picturing that I would be holding some tiny, adorable pigs. As it turned out, we went into a barn and he picked out some baby pigs, that weren't very small. He picked them up by their hind legs and before I knew it, he had handed two to me. They squealed and wiggled and tried to get loose and I held on to their back legs as tightly as I could, as they hung there. He was always made sure to tell me where the bacon came from that he made for breakfast and always reminded me of WHO I was eating.
My mom had two sisters, Donna and Buffy. Buffy got married at the farm on August 21, 1976. I was the flower girl and my cousin Brant, the ring bearer.
A fortune teller.
My Great Grandmother Royal had a cat figurine collection.
The first time I saw the cat collection was when I went to my Great Grandma Royals house for her 84 birthday. She was living alone at her home in the Portland Hills.
I leaned down and looked inside the glass cabinet that was full of all sizes and all colors of glass cats. She had started collecting them at her beauty shop and put the collection in her window. Now, it was in her beautiful home up above Portland, Oregon.
In 1944, my Great Grandma had a fortune teller come into her shop and she read her fortune. The fortune teller told her that she would be married within 6 months. Frances, a friend of my Great Grandmas, who had just gotten married and was headed to California came into the beauty shop a few days later to have her hair fixed as my Great Grandma said. Frances had forgotten the cat she had for my Great Grandmother’s collection and was very upset about it. Since she was heading out of town, she arranged to leave the cat at the home where she had been staying and the man there would get the cat to my Great Grandmother. Will Royal, the man who now had the cat, called my Great Grandmother to arrange to get her the cat. My Great Grandmother said she wasn't available until Saturday night. The story goes that instead of bringing my Great Grandmother the cat, he made up a story that he had a client who had a house with a view of the city. His client had said it would be ok for him to take Agnes, my Great Grandmother, up to see it. They went and looked at the view and then my Great Grandmother said “Let’s get out of here, they might come back.” He didn't tell her that it was his house until a few days later. Will sent her notes by special delivery everyday. They had met in April and were married in July. The fortune teller had been right. I never heard anything in the story about the cat from Frances. Maybe Frances had made it up so she could meet Will. My Great Grandmother kept a book that listed who had given her the cats and what year.
Eventually, my Grandma Bake (her only child) had the cat collection and in the summer when I was big enough I was allowed to take the cats out and look at them and dust them off. I would look at all of them, admiring them, deciding which ones I liked and didn’t like. I would rearrange them on each shelf. Some times I would look at the numbers so carefully taped to the bottom of the cats and look the number up in the book to see who had given my Great Grandmother the cat and when. Now, I have the cat collection.
December 20 was my birthday and we did what many people did for birthday parties, we would invite all my friends to meet at Louie’s Pizza. All you had to bring was a cake. I could invite many friends who would all be dropped off there and picked up later.
One year, we went to Atkinson’s Market, a few days before and I ordered a Candy Cane cake. I had come up with the idea for the design all on my own and I was so excited. I specifically asked that they make it in the shape of a candy cane and that it be red and white. They did it, so I got to bring that cake to Louie’s Pizza for my birthday.
Lou Mallane was a year younger than I was and his family owned Louie’s. His dad, mom and sisters were often all at the restaurant. It was in an old white church building and if you were lucky enough to sit up on the second floor they would bring your pizza up on a chain pulley lift. It was really fun to watch as a kid. My mom had hand-written the menus for Louie’s in beautiful Calligraphy. She had studied calligraphy at Reed College with Loyd Renold’s and she was extremely good at it. They had framed some of their first menus and had them on the wall and they were the ones my mom had written.
Louie’s felt like a second home, a place you could go and eat with your family, with a friends family, have a birthday party and later have a first date. I can picture the slippery, red covered seats in the booths that you would slide over to be near the wall, the chairs, that were never as comfortable as the booth, the bar, where every once in a while we would see if we happen to go through the side door, and the upstairs. Eventually, Louie’s closed, it was removed from its location. It was sad to see it go for many people. In my mind it still lives on.
One day, I happen to be in Meridian, Idaho and I was looking for a place to eat lunch with my son. Unfamiliar with the area, I glanced over and saw a sign that said Louie’s Pizza. I knew that it had been in Boise for a while, but I did not know it was in Meridian. I pulled in and told my son all about the one in Ketchum. We walked into the waiting room and there they were, the menus my mom had written in the 1970s, by hand in Calligraphy for that small town, family restaurant. I was so amazed, so happy to see them. Then, we walked into he restaurant and there was Lou Mallane sitting at table. He recognized me and got up to say hello. Although we had not seen each other for over 15 years, it was as though not a day had passed. He was running the restaurant now with his sister and happy to have us there to eat. It was the same, welcoming face and feeling that I used to get in Ketchum. It was a true reflection of what growing up in a small town is like and can bring you later in life and allow you to share with your kids.
Little Annie's was right across the street from Louie's and also a special treat when we got to go there.
Louie's is now located next to the original Picket Fence in Ketchum and is now a part of the Picket Fence. Here is an article I found about Louie's for those of you that want to read a little bit more about it.
Louie’s Pizza Celebrates 50 years.
An article from the Mt. Express 2015 by Jeff Cordes
Downtown Ketchum has changed plenty in 50 years. Along Main St., there is a row of banks instead of a row of gas stations and pay telephones.
Restaurants have changed, come and gone. Louie’s Pizza and Italian Restaurant, a down-town fixture and meeting place for 30 years, has been gone from Ketchum for 16 years now, but not forgotten.
On June 20, over 200 past employees and friends celebrated the success of a family tradition by marking the 50th anniversary of Louie’s Pizza and Italian Restaurant at its busy hub location in Meridian.
Louie Mallane, a ski bum from Ogden, Utah opened up Ketchum’s first Italian restaurant in June 1965 with a bank loan of $150 which he used to buy flour, mushrooms, napkins and assorted sundries.
Mallane and his wife Margaret had been hired by Ned Bell to manage the kitchen at the Nedders watering hole. They served pizzas and took in $29 the first night. Word spread quickly. Everybody pitched in.
Two years later, Mallane moved his business from the current Sawtooth Club Main St. location to the former First Congregational Church build-ing located around the corner on Leadville. He leased the building from insuranceman Ned Bell and Dr. John Moritz.
Louie’s first employee, Judy Whitehead, said, “Linda Vinagre and I were Louie’s first employees when he moved to the Sawtooth Club. He asked me, would you like to be a waitress? I said, Louie, I’ve never been a waitress. He said, that’s all right, I’ve never owned a restaurant. The three of us, we washed the dishes, did everything.”
Moving to the old church marked a turning point.
The church was built in 1884. It had been discontinued as a church in 1954 and became a beer bar known as Leadville Emporium, or Nedders. The historical building still stands, a working business called The Picket Fence at East Ave. and 6th St.
But its most colorful history came when it housed Louie’s.
The original rest rooms in Louie’s Pizza were located in the church confessional, which became the wait station. When Mallane, now 75, celebrated his 40th birthday in 1979, friends “mourned” the passing of his youth by transporting him in a coffin from Hailey to his be-loved restaurant in Ketchum.
Many good times happened.
After setting up shop in the church in 1967, Louie’s Pizza became so busy and gained such a reputation that the Mal-lanes added an upstairs banquet room and an expanded kitchen during the infamous drought year of 1976-77.
Louie Mallane was always a good businessman. When the restaurant marked its 20th anniversary in 1985, Pioneer Sa-loon owner Duffy Witmer said, “Louie is the premier businessman in town. Louie’s restaurant is an institution.”
The restaurant was a community gathering place, for one reason because it was such a well-run family business with good food. Everything about it was still small town.
For instance, one of the town’s doctors having dinner at Louie’s made it a point each visit to check the blood pressure of cook Pasquale Lampo.
Mallane expanded his restaurant business to Boise for the first time in 1983. He opened another restaurant in Idaho Falls. After closing his Ketchum restaurant in 1999, Mallane debuted the current Meridian restaurant in 2000. And that’s where the 50th anniversary party was held.
Past employees came from as far away as Sandpoint to celebrate with the Mallanes. They sidled up to the same bar that Louie had at the Ketchum restaurant, a bar he had purchased from Whitey Hershman at the Palace Club in Bellevue.
Former Blaine County Superintendent of Schools Phil Homer paid a special tribute to Louie for his support of Blaine County schools. Many other friends shared stories of their favorite Louie’s experiences.
Other friends that couldn’t make the trip to Boise paid tribute in a special video tribute that Kathy Mallane and Don Leonard had taped at their store in Ketchum.
Besides Louie and Margaret Mallane, the party included their four children and their spouses, Chris Mallane, Becky and Matt Jeffries, Maria Mal-lane, and Lou and Sarah Mal-lane. Grandchildren attending were Max Mallane, Sam Mal-lane, Wilson Mallane, Parker Jeffries, Allison Jeffries, Slader Jeffries, Noah Mallane, Harrison Mallane, Madelyn Mallane and Louie Mallane III.
Email the writer: firstname.lastname@example.org Jeff Cordes
It was always a big snow day on my birthday. Always very cold and the day before the shortest day of the year. “Put on your boots, my dad would say, in case we get stuck and have to walk.” If we could make it through the snow, past the avalanches and into Ketchum I would be able to have a birthday party at Louie's.