October 24, 2009

Wall, SD

Wall Drug - Wall, S.D.

Driving through the Black Hills National Forest on our way to I-90 today,,,Wall Drug...we keep seeing signs for Wall drug, free ice water, nickel coffee,,,what a delight to visit Wall Drug in what else, Wall, S.D.? RV friendly parking, why not?,,,the fascinating wonders of Wall Drug and the Badlands,,back in December, 1931, Dorothy and Ted Hustead bought the only drugstore in town, on the edge of the South Dakota Badlands...relatives told them that Wall was about as Godforsaken as you can get,,by 1936 busines hadn't grown much at all,,one hot summer afternoon Dorothy after lying down for an afternoon nap proclaimed she couldn't go to sleep not because of the heat but because of the cars going by on Route 16A,,the jalopies just about shook the house to pieces,,,then told Ted she finally saw how they could get all those travelers to come to our store,,,"offer them ice water,,let's put out signs on the highway telling people to come here for free ice water"...much like the Burma Shave signs,,Dorothy made up a few lines ..Get a Soda,,Get Root Beer,,Turn Next corner,,Just as near,,,To Highway 16 & 14,,,Free Ice Water,,,Wall Drug..."....the next weekend the signs were out on the highway,,,for hours people came pouring in,,all hot and frazzled,,they poured gallons of ice water, sold ice cream cones and sodas...the signs surely worked,,today Wall Drug draws up to twenty thousand people on a good summer day..Free Ice Water brought the Husteads a long way and it taught them a great lesson and that there's absolutely no place on God's earth that's Godforsaken,,,no matter where you live, you can succeed, because wherever you are, you can reach out to other people with something that they need,,,,,,

Free Ice Water - as in the beginning....

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