Girl Power


Floor burns. Knee pads.

Athletic tape. Atomic® Balm.

And hair spray.

(Vital for bouffant hairstyles and keeping one’s A-line skirt from clinging to one’s pettipants.)

As the manager of the Seymour High School girls’ basketball team in the late 60s, I knew them all well.  This was Iowa, after all, and if you weren’t coordinated or gutsy enough to play six-on-six basketball, being able to track rebounds and schlep gear proved a pretty close second.

It got you a seat on the bus when the team traveled.  And it let you stand in the glow of the towering Girl’s State Tourney statue in the legendary Trophy Room, where guys and girls met up at school day’s end…and after the big game.  (Yep, another story, another time.)

I’ve been thinking about those days since finding an Iowa Public Television documentary ( online. It captures many of the elements that made the era so rich for kids from small towns and rural areas where other recreational options were limited. Just say Denise Long…Union-Whitten…Vet’s Auditorium to a member of the Class of ’68 and see the response you get in return.

It’s true, I know, for my then-and-still friend Doris Alley Pollock.  Doris was one of four kids in a follow-the-team basketball family and the younger sister of Becky, another esteemed Warriorette.  She was, as well, one of the feisty guards who braved having her ankles securely taped the afternoon prior to each game to avoid further injury. It was a ritual Coach Fred Hanna made certain was conducted with extraordinary caution and modesty, given the fact that these were the years before girls could wear slacks to school.

(My job? Making certain the four rolls of athletic tape were close at hand. I did it well.)

Doris will tell you that the since-reconstructed ankles still carry the memory of those years, but she wouldn’t have missed her six-on-six seasons for the world.  She’s now a grandmother, whose own granddaughter competes in Iowa High School Rodeo. 

Different venue, same spirit.

And here’s one of Miss High School Rodeo’s favorite treats when the two get together.

– Carla

Pumpkin Bars

2 eggs

1 c sugar

1/2 c vegetable oil

1/2 c pumpkin

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 tsp soda

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp baking powder

1 c flour.

Beat eggs, oil and sugar very well….add pumpkin. Sift dry ingredients and add to the egg mixture. Mix well. Bake in a greased and floured 9 x 13 pan..350..for 20-25 minutes.


Frosting: 1 1/2 oz cream cheese, 1/2 lb powder sugar, 1/2 tsp vanilla, 2 Tbs butter, 1 Tbs milk. Beat well and spread on pumpkin bars while still warm. This is never enough when they are all here, so I usually double recipe and bake in a large jelly roll pan. Yummy good. Would like to have a $ for every time I have made them over the years! Doris 


2 Responses to “Girl Power”

  1. This was great. I love reading what you write. You can write about me anytime you want. I can think of so many subjects from those high school days that I would love to see in print. You and Kate keep it coming. 🙂

  2. Carla, I loved it. Oh my goodness, the memories! Keep them coming!!!!! This makes getting older much easier. Thank You

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