Kathy Bassett: Browns Park and Greystone - Part 1


Kathy Bassett

Kathy Bassett's column, "The View from Maybell," appears in the Saturday Morning Press.

Browns Park might, at first glance, seem ordinary and quiet. But take another look, and she isn't and she never has been.

She is full of mystery, hidden treasures, sorrows, happiness, with no in between.

Either you like her or you don't.

On the other hand, she doesn't care if you don't like her.

If she likes you, she yields her beauty for you to enjoy, but many of her secrets never will be known, and some of her treasures will remain hidden until the end of time.

I had a gentleman at the Maybell Senior Dinner ask me recently if I would do a story on Browns Park and Greystone.

What can I say?

There have been so many books written about the area; some are full of truth, and some are full of fiction. I guess I only can tell you what I've seen and known these past 31 years. Some of it is bad stuff, and some of it good. Some of it is funny stuff.

Take, for instance, the year I first moved to Browns Park.

It was 1978. Shortly after getting settled in, the Brown's Hole Homemaker's club had a "Box Social."

After asking around and finding out what a "Box Social" was, I fried up some chicken, made 'tater salad and stuff, decorated up my box and we headed for Lodore Hall.

Oh boy.

It was packed with people. I still remember who bought my box and how much he paid for it, but I was so extremely shy that I wouldn't own up to the box, so Steve Radosevich paid $12.50 to eat by himself. I never did tell him.

Jim and Penny Creasy had a cute daughter.

When she arrived at the hall, every single guy in the building was looking to see what her box looked like because they were going to bid on it. It went for around $50. The guy who bought it sure enough got to eat with Miss Creasy, but they weren't too happy with the peanut butter sandwich in the box.

My kids went to school in Browns Park. Their teacher was April Mann. City kids go on field trips and visit factories and places of interest, but our kids and the parents all got to go floating down the Green River.

Neil Folks supplied the large rubber rafts, and Glade and Sharon Ross brought their dinghy.

On the way up to Flaming Gorge Dam, which is where we were going to put in at, Esther Campbell yoo-hoooed at me over the two-way radio in the truck. We talked for a long time, and I kept telling her that I was amazed that the radio signals were so clear and good at such a great distance from her house to Dutch John.

When we pulled up at the dam to put the rafts in, she jumped out of the vehicle behind us. What a great joke on me!

We had a wonderful day, despite the fact that April and I sat in some poison oak when we stopped for a break and noon picnic, and later, one of the oar locks broke and the oar flew up in the air and came right down on my head. That was the first time I'd seen stars in the daytime.

You can't imagine the dances held at Lodore Hall.

Most folks came not only to dance but to watch the fist fights that always broke out during the evening. It was fabulous entertainment. Several times, there were so many people there that they couldn't all fit in the building and had to dance outside.

One dance was held during a Mountain Man Rendezvous up Beaver Creek, and while dancing with one of the mountain men, my daughter was horrified when his leather britches fell down around his ankles.

Kids were as much fun as the adults, always hiding under the tables to keep someone from hauling them onto the dance floor.

Little Jaimie Creasy buggered up his head on a nail when he dived under the table trying to escape a little girl chasing him around for a dance. Bigger kids swaggered around trying to look like the catch of the night.

There were no such things as wallflowers at the dances. We often wondered how some of the folks made it home, but they did manage to keep their vehicles between the fence rows.

To be continued ...


Ray Cartwright 7 years, 7 months ago

What amazes me about the Browns park area is the fact that there were so many different homesteads around the valley. Anywhere that there was a spring there was a cabin and probably outbuildings. Has there been any records kept as to who the homesteads belonged to and just exactly where they were on a map. We had some friends once that took us to an old homestead in the middle of nowhere that they knew about. Oh the memories that place must have held and will hold forever untold.


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