Ron Moore Remembers Anchorage Teen Night Clubs

by Michael R Dougherty
(California)

Ron Moore at the Microphone

Ron Moore at the Microphone

On February 5, 2021, Anchorage Memories caught up with popular Anchorage DJ Ron Moore.

We talked with Ron about his involvement with some of Anchorage's teen clubs and teen night clubs.


Anchorage Memories - Mike and Mary:

Ron, what was the first teen club you created or were involved with in Anchorage and where was it located? Do you remember the years it was open?


Ron:

It was the Anchor Teen Club. It started in 1954. I'm not sure how long it existed.

I was it’s first President. The club was for teens in the City View-Anchor Park area.

The club formed and met most of the time early on in the home of Earl and Mary Jane Hillstrand on Lake Otis Parkway. Hillstrand was an attorney who served in the legislature and founded Lands End in Homer.

In 1955 a KBYR DJ, Robert “Steamboat” Fulton, helped the club take over the abandoned Carnival Club that was owned by Larry and Midge Starns that also owned the Starns Club downtown.

It was a major undertaking but it was rented from the Starns, remodeled and operated with a kitchen. We had teen dances with live bands and DJ.


In 1956 we had the 1320 Youth Club

While President of the Anchor Teen Club, I was asked to become involved in the 1320 Youth Club which had been started downtown. But it’s advisor had been charged with crimes. The club met in a building on C street for a short period.


In 1958 it was Carpenter's Hall at 4th and Denali

We rented the hall each weekend for record hops with Cuz Muz, a DJ from Elmendorf AFB.

We had to setup equipment each time for the sound system and turntables, tape decks, etc. Betty Poeschel(later of Betty’s Record Den) ordered my first custom show suit and it later became the Gold Lame’ tux.


Around 1959 we started The Royal Pad

It was billed as a Teen Night Club more than a youth center.

It got started when several sponsors of my radio show joined to take over the upstairs of Blaine's Paint store at Northern Lights and Spenard Road.

It needed major remodeling and the youths themselves had a contest to name the club.

That resulted in the name "The Royal Pad" after The Royal Coachman theme.

The club featured one of the nicest sound systems and a great Juke box.

Live bands by some of the earliest rock n roll bands in Anchorage graced the stage on the weekends with live broadcasts on KFQD Radio.

A live broadcast was scheduled from the Pad the evening of March 27th, 1964 but the earth shook violently and I stayed on the air for 27 hours at the station.

Note:

At this stage of my Royal Coachman days many of the shows we did were becoming too large.

So several of the people that had helped, joined together to form a group called Pacestters Internationale', including Betty and Pretz Poeschel from Betty’s Record Den, Joe Bacon, Duncan Roberson, Buff Westin, and Skip Konte (he became nationally recognized as a member of Blues Image and composer of the hit song. "Ride Captain Ride").

So from Shindig City forward it was Pacesetters putting things together, including the Battle of the Bands and many big name concerts such as The Grass Roots, Young Rascals, Sam the Sham and others.

Then in the mid 60’s it was Shindig City

That club was located on Muldoon Road in a building formerly used for Procter's Grocery.

It was a very large building converted into a combination dance floor with a large stage and recreation area with ping pong, slot car racing, Juke box and other games.

We could hold several hundred teens on the weekend with two or more popular Anchorage rock bands such as The Heartbeat Band, Arsons, Blue Chip Stock, Burgundy Rose, Proof and many others. Go Go dancers named The Fringe Benefits danced on a side stage throughout the night. A group of young men called The Red Guard made sure the evening stayed peaceful.

In the late 60’s we had the Cheetah

Located on Government Hill. The building was the former Railroad Club owned by the City. We transformed it into a large youth center open daily with games and a kitchen.

We had dances featuring many Anchorage Bands and a large light show projected over the full dance floor appropriate for the flower children days. National stars also appeared, sponsored by Pacesetters.

Note:

Over the years and between some of the places mentioned, there were quite a few regular youth activities. Most centered around The Royal Coachman activities.

Those included the Elks Lodge, DeMolay Boys, Rainbow Girls, Cotillion Club, and the National Guard Armory.


Anchorage Memories - Mike and Mary:
 
What was the most popular club and why?


Ron:

The Royal Pad seems to be remembered the most. But Shindig City was the largest draw.


Anchorage Memories - Mike and Mary:
 
 
Ron, tell us about your memories of those clubs?


Ron:

We, yours truly along with Betty and Pretz, tried feverishly to make the activities fun and exciting, but always something safe and free from drugs so that parents would support it.

Most of them had youth involved in organizing and managing. And we had the Pacetters Youth Activity Council supervised so wonderfully by Betty Poeschel.

The Royal Pad had the RMFC (Ron Moore Fan Club) and they did all of the remodeling work to make the Pad get started.


Anchorage Memories - Mike and Mary:
 
 
What do you want to say to all the, now grown up teens, that enjoyed those clubs?


Ron:

It is my wish that any of the guys and gals that recall those days do so favorably and cherish those memories with the same fondness as yours truly.

Looking back, I feel as though I was just along for the ride.


Anchorage Memories - Mike and Mary:

Ron, that was an incredible "blast from the past".

Looking back over the many years you were involved in helping to provide good activities for the Anchorage youth, we're sure that these memories will touch the hearts of many who were there and remember when.

Our thanks to Ron Moore for taking us all back to the day when The Royal Coachman ruled Anchorage's radio airwaves.

Thank you Ron

BONUS



Here the Royal Coachman Theme Song right now



DOUBLE BONUS



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Feb 10, 2021
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Cinnamon Cinder
by: Anonymous

You didn't mention the Cinnamon Cinder.

A Note From Anchorage Memories

Anchorage did have the Cinnamon Cinder teen night club. But that one was not run by Ron Moore and Pacesetters.

The Cinnamon Cinder was owned by a local man named Larry Snipes.


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