Laurel and Hardy Society Sons of the Desert Way Out West Tent Los Angeles
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The Brushwood Gulch Gazette is the newsletter of the Way Out West Tent. It is published six times a year, shortly before regular tent meetings. Members receive the complete printed edition in the mail. The online edition features most of the articles found in the printed version, minus photos.

Christmas Season Begins Early at the Mayflower Club On December 5th

To avoid the Christmas rush, our Board has once again decided to have our Christmas meeting on the first Tuesday in December. The first Tuesday in December, this year, is December 5th. In addition to our selection of Christmas themed films, Jim MacGeorge has accepted our invitation to once again show us his talent to make us laugh. We also will offer a free spin on our "Wheel of Fortune" for a prize.

Our opening film for the evening will be Big Business (1929). In this classic silent short, Stan and Ollie quickly show all the ways to be unsuccessful as door to door Christmas tree salesmen. James Finlayson also appears prominently in the film, as the Boys' most unwilling Christmas tree customer. In 1992, this Laurel & Hardy film was selected by the United States National Film Registry to be preserved in the Library of Congress. It's really a great film!

In There Ain't No Santa Claus (1926), a Charley Chase silent short, Charley tells his landlord (Noah Young) that he can't pay his rent for the month. When his suspicious landlord finds out that Charley is using the rent money to buy a Christmas gift for his wife, Charley's landlord goes crazy. Then the "fun" begins. This film has Christmas trees, a Christmas turkey, and even fighting Santa Clauses. The film also has two Laurel & Hardy featured actors, Kay Deslys (Charley's wife) and Fred Kelsey (a store detective).

In the 1930 short Below Zero, on a cold, wintery night (maybe close to Christmas) vagrants Stan and Ollie find a wallet in the snow. With the money they find in the wallet, they decide to finally enjoy a decent meal, for a change, at a nearby restaurant. What could go wrong with that?

Laughing Gravy is the name of the Boys' dog in their short, Laughing Gravy (1930). After Stan and Ollie's landlord (Charlie Hall) puts Laughing Gravy outside, in the middle of the night, the Boys decide to sneak Laughing Gravy back into their boarding house. Yes, on another cold wintery night (again maybe close to Christmas). Will their landlord find Laughing Gravy and throw out both the dog and Stan and Ollie into the cold night?

Our final film for the evening will be Our Gang's short, Bedtime Worries (1933), starring George "Spanky" McFarland. On the very first night that Spanky's parents decide that he is finally old enough to start sleeping in his own bed, Spanky meets a strange man with a familiar name that you often hear near Christmas time. Emerson Treacy plays Spanky's father, and Gay Seabrook (a younger Gracie Allen type) plays Spanky's mother. Our gang members Matthew "Stymie" Beard, Tommy Bond, Georgie Billings, and Jerry Tucker are also in the film (along with Pete the Pup).

The Mayflower Club is located in North Hollywood at 11110 Victory Boulevard. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and our meeting starts at 7:15 p.m. "Fisher Franks" (100% beef hot dogs) and your choice of chips will be sold from The Mayflower Kitchen. Refreshments will be sold from The Mayflower Bar. Free cake will be served. Join us on Tuesday night, December 5th, for a lot of laughs--all in the Christmas spirit!

Click here for a registration form...

Click here for a map to the Mayflower Club...

2018 Dues Are Due

The annual dues for Way Out West Tent Memberships are due each January. We need your dues to be paid on time, so we can continue to cover our expenses for renting The Mayflower Club, purchasing hot dogs and condiments, cakes, and postage to mail our newsletters. Your dues will cover admission to all five regular meetings and a discount for our Special Event. Rates are listed in the column to the right.

Please make your checks out to "Way Out West Tent" and mail those checks to Lori McCaffery, 4313 Woodland Avenue, Burbank, CA 91505 or bring your checks to our January meeting. Mailing your check is preferred so we can avoid long check-in lines at our January meeting. Thanks for your continued support of our Tent.

Bring Food For The Needy to Next Meeting

Christmas is a time of year to receive, but even more importantly, it is a time to give from the heart. This year we will be donating to The Burbank Temporary Aid Center. They were founded in 1974 and are a Food Bank providing help to needy families. They "provide to individuals, families, the working poor, crime victims, senior citizens and the homeless with short term emergency assistance that they need, to live with dignity." We are asking each person to bring two food items to our December 5th meeting, and if you forget we will ask you to make a cash donation. Easy open can goods of fruits, vegetables and soups are most welcome, as are cereals, boxed instant potatoes, boxed stuffing, boxed Mac & Cheese, cereals, rice, pastas, pancake mix, syrup, canned chicken and tuna. Please, no ramen or exotic specialty foods. Thank you all once again for your continued generosity.

L&H Festival at Old Town Music Hall

The Old Town Music Hall in El Segundo will feature classic comedy shorts and Laurel & Hardy's March of the Wooden Soldiers the weekend of December 15-17. For information, visit their website.

Notes From Our September Event

As most of you know, our September Event celebrated the 50th anniversary of our Way Out West Tent. The turnout was great (about 120 attendees). Everyone that attended the Event received a special fez with a 50th Anniversary Pin. The games and prizes, to start the evening off, were fun and well attended. My thanks goes to Allen McGarrett (Wheel of Fortune), Bobby Timmony (Darts), Rick Greene (Ring Toss), Eddie Pratt (Bean Bag Toss), and Tom & Debbie Hopkins (Bottle Toss) for their help in hosting the games.

Our "Crew Feed" meals of chicken, salmon, and pasta were prepared by Cafe on Location. The food was delicious. Thanks to Bob Duncan for helping me with the Toasts. Thanks also to David Webb, Dave Greim, Victor D'Augustino, Bob Brauer, J.T. Tropper, Rick Greene, Laura Reuther, and Bob Duncan for helping with the Sons of the Desert Song.

After the Sons of the Desert Song was finished, Lori McCaffery presented certificates to three groups of our members. She calls them Tent Stakes (longest continuous members), 50+ (have attended 50 meeting or more), and Worker Bees (tent workers who work behind the scenes). A lot of our members received more than one certificate. Thanks to Lori for doing her presentations so smoothly and quickly. After Lori gave out all the certificates, we surprised her with a plaque for her 50 years of work for our Tent. Kudos to Lori for being the backbone of the Way Out West Tent for 50 years!

Later in the evening, Jim MacGeorge did a half hour of stand-up and "killed" again. Then Bob & Annie Tyszka hosted a live Laurel & Hardy Jeopardy Game. It worked out well. Contestants were Laura Reuther (who won), J.T. Tropper, Bob Brauer, Brian Givens, and Norm Klemz. Randy Skretvedt was the judge for the game. Thanks to Christa Demirjian and Bob Duncan for helping with the free raffle. We then screened all 106 Laurel & Hardy films (in two minutes of clips), interviews of all of our tent's Grand Sheiks, and videos of Roach celebrities that were also members of Way Out West. To close out our September Event, we screened Way Out West.

Thanks to Wally Wingert for bringing his full size Laurel & Hardy mannequins, so our members could pose for pictures with the Boys. Big thanks to Lori & Colin McCaffery for the table decorations, and Dalton Siirila, Eddie Pratt, and Bobby Timmony for coming early to set up tables and move chairs at The Mayflower.