City Park Walkabout Pt. 2 by Ken Bailey
In a previous post, we took a trip down memory lane with Ken Bailey, our resident oil geek and oil field guru. In August we got to share our time with this fun gentleman, but one evening while here, sleep eluded our friend. We started talking his adventure in this post, but there is still more to tell about his mini-adventure here in the wild and remote west.
The old oilfield garages out back of my former home are gone, replaced by new condos... and the alley, which formerly dead-ended, now goes through to River Road, and beyond.... And...(gasp!) are those... mail boxes? Street mail delivery was unheard of in Oil Geek's day!
New houses have appeared across River Road from the west end of City Park! In 1972, you would have seen Utah from where I was standing.
The Kevin Poole Memorial Baseball Complex is in the distance ... behind it, a dead oil well sleeps unknown beneath the ridge, one of the south-most deep wells of the Rangely Weber Field in the city area. It is because this well took the fall in the 50's to water injection ... and not #4, the next well to the north ... that 4 survived to pump oil into the 1980's; most of the the rest of the wells in 4's east-west row were also dismantled in the 50's, leaving 4 the sole survivor within the city limits.
Kevin Poole, by the way, was a very likeable young man who died in a traffic accident while I still lived in Rangely. I went to school with him. He was a true personification of the "All American Boy," said the Rangely Times at the time, and I concur -- it was a great loss that he was taken so young.
A shelter stands where once there was a large round, grassy hump in the ground, just east of the Poole Complex. Used for the DJ Booth during the Septemberfest celebration here.
I'm on my way eastward now, heading toward the former location of the 1913 Schoolhouse when it was a "Teen Canteen". A look west over my shoulder, back at the Poole Complex, yielded this view.
The 1913 Schoolhouse has departed; in the 1980's, it picked up its petticoat skirts and walked over to west Main Street, to serve as the Rangely Museum, then (a few years later), picked and moved again, this time to the east end of Main, when the Museum expanded and became the "Rangely Outdoor Museum".
In its place at the east end of the City Park, a second shelter now stands.
1913 Schoolhouse, during its days on West Main Street as the single-building Rangely Museum (1992). Today, this location is the parking lot for the Blue Mountain Inn.
Flying kites in 1970 on what would later become the Kevin Poole Memorial Baseball Complex. We are looking eastward, and the 1913 Schoolhouse peers back at us from its location (then) at the east end of the City Park.
My buddy, Lee. A good friend, back in the day. 1913 Schoolhouse behind him. City Park, 1970.
A badminton/volleyball court now stands about where the old Rangely Municipal Swimming Pool once was located. Looking northward at the east end of the park, Bell Avenue beyond the trees. (I used to walk Bell Avenue to get from Cottonwood to Rangely High School every day).
That's part two! Check back in a few more days for the conclusion of the walk, and a glimpse into the current and past Rangely hidden away in the wild and remote west.