Usherette uniforms a unique addition to museum
by Ron Swift | Patterson Irrigator
May 30, 2013 | 1019 views | 0 0 comments | 214 214 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Ron Swift
Ron Swift
Patterson’s downtown museum has received another donated item that will bring back fond memories to longtime residents.

Elmer and Vada Fink built the local theater on South Del Puerto Avenue in 1937. It later was named the Del Puerto Theatre. The building now houses Tigers Furniture in our unique downtown.

The theater’s ornate interior made it an attractive gathering place not only for moviegoers but for party-givers as well. To add to its luster, the Finks dressed their usherettes in stylish uniforms with both red and gold jackets, slacks and small caps.

A number of Pattersonites have told me they worked as usherettes while in high school. And now the uniforms they wore have surfaced.

Just the other day, Elwood Schut donated two complete uniforms to the Patterson Township Historical Society for display in its museum. They will be fitted onto mannequins and displayed this Apricot Fiesta weekend.

Elwood found the uniforms stored in his North Patterson basement where the Finks lived. His late wife Joland was a granddaughter of Elmer and Vada.

To Patterson history buffs, it was found treasure.


The corner of South Ninth and E streets, which formerly housed Del Puerto Hospital, is a downright mess. Dry weeds grown high, the building boarded up … a real eyesore.

And with our Apricot Fiesta guests lining up on Ninth Street for this Saturday’s parade, we should be ashamed of ourselves for allowing it to remain.

Sorry, but it needed saying.


Bob “The Spoke” Kimball, that two-wheeler phenom, the other day came up with an idea that certainly is not going to fly.

Our local museum has displays of an early telephone, and Spokie suggested they be lined up in a row that would include a cell phone.

As “yours truly” presently serves as the museum’s curator, I can truthfully say that it ain’t gonna happen on my watch.


“The trouble with quotes on the Internet is that it’s difficult to determine whether or not they are genuine.” – Abraham Lincoln


Back where I come from in Iowa, they ask me how I can live in earthquake-prone California. But the question only arises in the spring and the fall.

In the winter they are too busy battling blizzards, fixing frozen pipes and shoveling snow, while in the summer they are keeping an eye out for tornados.

Quite honestly, I have no friends living in Oklahoma. They’ve all moved to safer states.


Phil Breasher was the first to earn his Fast Talk educational diploma for correctly answering the four questions posed last week. Smart guy, that Phil. Way smarter than Spokie.


Now get this: The Olympic committee is considering dropping the sport of wrestling from the 2020 Games. The mat sport was one of the original competitions when the Olympics were founded more than 100 years ago.

Wrestling is competing with seven other sports for the final slot on the Olympic agenda. The other six: squash, sports climbing, wakeboarding, karate, wushu, roller sports and a combined baseball-softball bid.

You gotta be kidding me! Squash, wakeboarding and …… wushu?


Doesn’t it stand to reason that if walking is good for your health, postmen would be immortal?

Well, ours is. He doesn’t look a day older than he did last week.

Ron Swift is editor/publisher emeritus of the Patterson Irrigator. He can be reached at

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