2011 Joplin F-5 Tornado

Joplin tornado there will be no picture for this post as this was a video of the 2011 Joplin tornado. It took out nearly two-thirds of the city. Where my former boys club was located it was not damaged. But less than three blocks away was total devastation. The apartment complex where I lived was leveled. When you see this video you will understand the ferocity of the storm.

Changes at the Joplin Boys Club

a this was a carpet ball game in the Joplin Boys Club game room. Joplin now charges just $270 for their summer program. When I was executive director in Joplin our yearly membership was $10 a year. How times have changed. I wonder how a family with four to five kids can afford the boys club anymore? Also when I was in Joplin we didn’t have a fence around the club. I still don’t understand the fence? Now also it seems to be a daycare center during the day. After school hours are two hours less at night than when I was there. They now close at 7 p.m. every evening. They also close on Saturday now and that seems absurd to me. On holidays they also close. I used to close on Christmas or Thanksgiving but that was it. Times have changed.

Rest Time

on a hike with the Joplin Boys Club three of the members decided to take a break on a log over an empty space. The picture is kind of funny in a way. The tree that they were on was over a gulley. We had taken a hike near the George Washington Carver Memorial area which was about 10 miles from Joplin. This was a place I took the boys too often as they also had an opportunity to study about George Washington Carver in a museum at the park. For those not in the know he discovered many uses for the peanut among other things. I used to tease the kids that without him they may never have used peanut butter. It was a great outing and we had a prepared lunch and then headed home.

The New Gym

this is the new gymnasium at the Joplin Boys Club. I’m still not sure why they had a second gymnasium installed? The first gymnasium of the full size one with bleachers that pulled down. The Ozark Christian College used our gymnasium for their home court. And II gymnasium that you see here is even larger than the first one. It was installed over the blacktop area that was enclosed. The club no longer has their own basketball program but they rent the gymnasium out for an outside basketball program which is very unusual to me. The expensive of the boys club has risen as well. When I was executive there the yearly membership was $10. Now just for the summer they charge $270. I wonder how the poor kids in Joplin can afford that?

Don’t Fence Me In

fences around the Joplin Boys Club? When I was director of the club we had no fences around the club. We weren’t trying to keep people out. I have a hard time understanding the fence around the club. For that matter I have a hard time understanding the hours of this club. They close at 7 p.m. when I was there we closed at 9 p.m. yes, times are different now. I could understand the time of closing, but that fence? When Reagan told Gorbachev to take down that wall, I might say the same thing to the Joplin Club. Take down that fence! This was the softball field of the club and we also played bubble ball there. We had a large soccer field in connection with GOSA- the greater Ozarks Soccer Association. I struggled with this and I’m glad it’s no longer there. That group wasn’t interested in the General welfare of the club but only in establishing a field for themselves. Yes times do change, Some for the better, and fences for the worst.

Joplin Boys Club Funhouse

this was the Funhouse at the Joplin Boys Club Athletic Field. It had a water slide and many other fun things the climb through much like a jungle gym. The club rented it for 3 days and the kids had a ball with them. The biggest attraction was the water slide especially in the dog days of summer. There was a waiting line to go down the waterslide. Other attractions were a frisbee golf tournament and basketball games in the gymnasium. It was well worth the expense as the boys had a great time.

Waterfall Bathing

the Joplin Boys Club had a camping program near Joplin. I took 8 boys to a nearby waterfall. Sammy liked the idea of camping near the waterfall. All the boys asked if they could take a shower under the waterfall. They all wore swimsuits but I tried first to see what the water pressure would feel like. It wasn’t bad but very cold. The kids used the word refreshing. My shower was brief but the boys stayed under a good half-hour. We took this picture after they had got dressed. They were pretty full of themselves at the time. We had a great dinner that night and a sing-along and a few ghost stories before bedtime. All in all it was a great camping trip.

Joplin Boys Club Contrasts

This is the Joplin Boys Club  I knew  back in 1979. As you can see you there is no second gym at this time.. also worthy of note  at this time  we were allowing girls in the membership  much earlier  than did the national office  in  1986 . I have often wondered why  the boys club in Joplin  required a second gymnasium ? Here is the second gymnasium. The original Boys Club is seen from the air . Another baffling thing  is why  they reduced hours  from 3 to 9 p.m.  to the current  3 to 7 p.m. ? In essence the boys club has become an after-school program to fit working parents schedules.






Bubbleball Uses

the sport of Bubble Ball was played by three of my boys clubs. Hoffman Estates, Joplin, and Bradenton all played Bubble Ball. However the ball in question also had other uses. Roof Ball was also played using this ball which drifted with the currents of the Wind especially on Windy days. Roof Ball was only played at the Hoffman Estates and Bradenton boys clubs. Both Bubble Ball and Roof Ball were more challenging on Windy days. Hoffman Estates had the perfect roof for Roof Ball angling 3 times on the back roof. The kids had a great time playing with the Bubble Ball.

Joplin Boys Club ping pong

 this is a Joplin Boys Club game room. When I was the executive director of the club we had a game called holy ping pong. We cut a  cut a 1 inch diameter hole in the middle of the paddle. The trick was to learn to hit the ball on the sides of the paddle.  It was a great game on skill and Agility. We also played regular ping pong and around the world ping pong.

Woodshop fallacies

Bradenton Boys Club and Joplin boys clubs  each had a operational  woodshop  at one time .  But over the years  each  became obsolete  within the boys club program . Each room had power saws  and lathes. However wood shops have to have qualified  people to operate them .  My two clubs did not .  Plus when you added to it  liability insurance Woodshop programs  just  didn’t  make sense . Both of my programs  had activities such as nail driving  which is a far cry  for what a Woodshop program should be .  I wonder how many active Woodshop programs exist today  in boys clubs?d3539158a19fe3e56c622ec18ebafb76