Olympic Decathlon Champion Rafer Johnson is a product of the Junior Olympics; the program also included such current Olympic hopefuls as Distance Runner Gerry Lindgren, Pole Vaulter John Pennel and Swimmer Donna de Varona. And with all those yet-to-be tapped kids out there, it looks like little Old London—and free enterprise, too—may have taken a giant step.
OFF TO THE WOODS
Know where the latest In place is? On the beach at Antibes with Noel? In Baja California with the editors of Vogue? No. The In place now, for the show-biz set anyway, is off in the Maine boondocks near the tiny town of Beddington. There, 5,000 acres of forests, lakes, streams and seclusion have been set aside for a cozy little group known as the Back Woods Club. The club is a promotion of Earl Harris, production manager of Paramount pay-TV. He got the idea one day when he fell to wondering about all those city-trapped celebrities who take off weekends in private planes "and just fly around with no place to go."
The club will not open until next year, but a woodsy new cocktail lounge is being built, and when it is finished work will start on a service station. An antique store, a tackle shop and a golf course are down for the future, but already Franchot Tone and John Wayne have signed up, at $1,000 each, for charter memberships. William Holden and Johnny Carson look like sure bets to join, and Barney Balaban, the big man at Paramount, is mulling it over. Says Harris, "I think Maine has been neglected for long enough."
GOLF CAN BE BEAUTIFUL
They laughed when Tony Lema and Ken Venturi sat down a couple of years ago to sign contracts with F and J brand golf clubs, made by a small, obscure California company. After all, both pros were playing poorly and none of the big sponsors wanted them. Venturi later complained out loud about his awful game, and his autographed putters stacked up like unsold Hula-Hoops. Then came the comebacks, rags became riches and the rest of the story is pure soap opera.
Now the lathes are turning like mad. Says San Francisco F and J distributor Wally Bates, "We are getting tremendous orders from the Orient. The United States Open champ's name means something." Also, since Lema's recent winning streak, the strike-it-rich company reports it can't fill all the orders for Lema-endorsed clubs.
There is a moral for the little man in here somewhere, something about he who has the last lathe.
THE SEAGOING SELL
Let an adman come aboard a ship and chances are he will run an idea up the masthead to see if anybody salutes it. There is little escape from the influence of advertising—and this summer it may even show up in the sea all around us.