Aug 15 09 is the 40th anniversary concert at the site many originals will be there . I’ll be there didn’t make the first one . Brian M.
I work on the loading dock of the Miami Herald, so naturally I get to see the papers before they get circulated. The editors are planning a “Woodstock Commemorative” for the 40th year annavsrsory of that event. They are asking readers who were there to respond with e-mails with their memories and recolections and since I was there… I did that. So… since this thread is already here I thought that I would share it with you if you’re interested.
Here is what I wrote to them last night:
I see in the “Tropical Life” that hit the press today that you’re interested in hearing some stories from those of us who were there. I get the jump on this because I work there on the Miami Herald loading dock and I have been there for almost thirty two years now…! I am also good friends with Madeleine Marr who edits the “People” celebrity gossip page and she knows me well.
Woodstock 1969. It was a disaster area. We had nice weather on the first day but then the rain and after that it was a “Mud-Fest” The music wasn’t even that enjoyable because they didn’t know how to set up for out door acoustics very well yet.
I was hanging out at old “Pete’s Tavern” in Bronxville, N.Y. at the time when a bunch of friends of mine said… “Let’s go…” and we did. We had no idea at the time of what an epicenter of world events we were getting ourselves into yet. My parents didn’t even know that I was there until I got back… imagine that…?! As a kid, I knew in my heart of hearts not to take any of that “Hippie” nonsense seriously and you couldn’t get me to take an illegal drug if you used a crow bar to open my mouth but I went along anyway and spent a whole week up there before I got back home.
I actually made money while I was there. I took on a job with the concession stand company and they made a “supervisor” of me and gave me an orange t-shirt to wear… but all the food ran out in less than three hours, but I got a pay check…! The rest of the time was spent trying to figure out how to survive in a disaster area… and I survived just fine. There was no way out… the whole area was totally grid-locked by that time.
I am from Yonkers, N.Y. and one of my buddies from those days was a kid named Steve Tollarico who you will know better by his stage name of Steve Tyler, the lead singer for the Boston based rock band Airosmith. He was there and that was the last time I ever saw him and that is a funny story to say the least. I’ve known Steve since 1963. And, by the way, Barbara Ferranti from human resources knew him too. They were in the same high school class and I would have been in that class myself if I hadn’t left the public school system in the fifth grade. Anyway… I was walking around the grounds there when I saw some of the guys we knew from Yonkers and I stopped and asked them if Steve was around. They said yeah, he was and they pointed to a tent set up there on a small hill but they told me something like “you don’t want to see him right now in the mood he’s in”… but I went up there anyway. Just then Steve popped out of the tent looking really “crazy” like a wild man with pajamas on with his “plumber’s butt” sticking out the back. He was yelling and snorting at everybody like he was some kind of a lunatic. I don’t know what his problem was at the time but I will bet that it had something to do with his drug supply. Anyway… I said “Hi…!” to him and he just looked at me like a mad man, said something that was unintelligible, broke some wind and got back inside his tent. That was the last time I saw Steve Tollarico who you know as Steve Tyler from Airosmith. True, honest.
I found an old girlfriend on mine there with her sisters. They let me sleep in their tent so I got good rest. The festival broke up but I stuck around for a few days because I didn’t want to deal with the grid locked traffic. So… a few days after I was standing out there in the field when I saw someone from the stage with a very large professional looking camera take a picture from the stage out into the field of mud and people. Later that year in December… there was that picture in LIFE Magazine with me right in the middle with my red shirt and blue jeans. You can’t really recognize the details of my face but I remembered the moment when the photographer took that.
That old girlfriend of mine told me later on that she saw me somewhere in that full length movie that was made of it. I viewed the movie several times but I could never spot myself in it.
Tom De Lello
We think we opened But called it for rain ….Brian gathering as many Drag Times and copying anything pertaining to Dover…And any other track that ran that day…he said His Dad went and he also has been a contributor to the WoodStock Museum. Maso…Thats Cool !
Confirmed -YES Dover Ran
Just found results for the 17th !…3rd day of peace & love . Fireball Shores ran …Charlie Castaldo in the SS/BA Hemi Dart took the win over Harvey Wilson . Al Bowes lost to Wellner . Brazee lost to Addesso’s 36 Dodge and Mag Stein D/A Camero over Frank Ruocco’s C/AVette Loafer. and ShoTt took the bucks . Brian
Brian & I just compaired notes. Prock & Howell, Fireball Shores,Chuck Finders and Charlie Hill booked in as “Supercharged Fuel Coupes” …All this time… looked at those shots of them and never knew -Same day as Woodstock! Castaldo had just won the SuperStock Nationals in the D’Elia Motors Hemi-Dart .He Beat Harvey Wilson’s SS/G former “Hairy Too” Cobra Jet with a 10:83-134mph. Some fast times that Day …Some Peace & Love ! …more like thunder & vengence ! Shott ran 7.83 @ 191…Antone ran 150 to beat George Brazee who ran 180! and Prock & howell were fastest “Fuel Coupe at 8.21 -180. John Wellners Gas Coupe Beat Al Bowes Too.
…..Sorry Billy…we found the Drag Times Article I wrote .
If you want a weather report for Dover that day, you can go on the National Weather Service site, look into the archives for climate. A few years back I checked, and Dutchess County had scattered showers in the A.M., then partly sunny for the afternoon.
Looks like the storm headed out northwest, to the little Hamlet of Bethel, NY in mid-upstate.
If it rained in the A.M., I’m sure there must be more than a few Jr. Stockers out there,
that were called down to the starting line, to be paraded up-and-down the track, to help dry off the surface, before the Gassers were fired up.
Joe Cocker must have just been finishing is set at Woodstock (2:00 PM) when the rain storm hit, just as the Gassers came out of the Hot Car Pits, towards the Burn-Out area at Dover.
Kathy V’s. collection is awesome. The Prock & Howell car looks like it could run
8.00’s @ 180 standing still.
Date; 8/17/69, The AHRA Nationals were taking place on Long Island, New York National
Date; 8/10/69, The Super Stock Magazine Nationals were held at US30, York, PA. (I think).
* The AHRA Nationals and Super Stock Magazine Nationals wouldn’t have been held on the
same day in Eastern, USA ❓ Or maybe I’m wrong 💡
Me, I was in the right field mezzanine section at Shea Stadium, watching the Mets sweep the
San Diego Padres in a double-header, on their way to the 1969 World Championship.
My father, may have been running up-and-down the track, trying to help dry-off the wet surface 😆
…………………………….Put F Troop or Prock or Howell in Search here…we found it for sale a while back [edit-dino]
That being the case, then I imagine that many of the Dover regulars may have not been at Dover that day because of it.
I’m not sure. If I remember correctly, many Dover regulars avoided sanctioned NHRA and AHRA points meets and championships, if you catch my drift 🙄
Many times my father would pop my little brother on the hood of the car, as we would go down the hill into the tech inspection lanes. And as if on cue, a friendly tech-inspector would say, “Are you still running L/S 71′-72′ or SS/I in 73′. Shoe-polish the passenger side window with the class and #, and send us on our way 😀
But yes, some of the Big Guns did attend the sanctioned races. All is fair in Love and War.
As for the Gasser Meet, maybe the AHRA Nationals out at L.I. wasn’t that important ❓
The Drags Times Article for that day mentioned….”Castaldo had just won the SuperStock Nationals in the D’Elia Motors Hemi-Dart .”….I’ll dig into that
What you’re saying would mostly apply to Stock classes. It was great when we had those “Modified Production” classes to race in. You could never expect a tech line to keep up with it. And then when all of the winners got “protested”. It’s too much. 🙄
Yes you are right. A little bending of the rules was allowed, unless it got out of hand.
We really didn’t need the tech-inspection for Stock and/or Super Stock, because everybody knew what each other was doing. Just the safety equipment needed a visual.
Dover was still the most fun-time track around. And the Class Trophy’s given out with
the marble-base were much better than those cheapie lightweight tall things that
New York National Speedway gave out.
Back to Woodstock.
DINO, Looks like the Super Stock Magazine Nationals held at US30 York, were held
either August 2/3 or August 9/10. Same guys at the AHRA Nationals (held on 8/17 at
National Speedway) were at the Super Stock Magazine Nationals.
Winners at the Super Stock Magazine Nationals;
Bruce Larson in AA/FC (Fuel Funny Car)
Tom Smith in Gas/FC (Gas Funny Car)
Grumpy Jenkins in Super Stock Enduro Eliminator, SS/C, 69 Camaro,ZL-1 All-Aluminum 427
Frank Iaconio in Stock Eliminator, 57 Chevy
* I think thats where the Centalanzo Brothers won the SS/DA Class Championship, with
their 67′ Hemi Belvedere.
* Ed Miller in his 68′ Hemi Cuda SS/B made it to the 3rd round in his class.
Charlie Castaldo may have had the quickest Super Stocker at Dover for 68′ and 69′.
Remember him posting a 10.65 ET over Chuck McJury’s 68′ Hemi Dart “Playmate” in some
Go see: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ydvcA_O-TNg … for a pleasant suprise…!!! 😆