Wednesday, August 19, 2015

The Beatles meet the Press and Fans

From the collection of Sara Schmidt  Please do not post without my permission

From the collection of Sara Schmidt.  Please do not post without my permission

The Beatles Meet the Press and fans
Written by Unknown
Houston Chronicle
August 20, 1965

Frantic fans of what may be the world's most famous foursome fought with security police and figured out many ways to try to get near their idols Thursday, but generally failed.

Beatlemaniacs, hundreds of them, proved the ingenuity of the younger generation while trying to gain admittance to the Beatles press conference Thursday afternoon at the Sheraton-Lincoln Hotel.   Admittance to the 2pm press conference was permitted only to those who clutched, with a vise-like grip, a white ticket signed by C.W. Weaver, station manager of Radio Station KILT.

But many of the youth either misled or just hoping, flashed a wide variety of "press cards" at police in an effort to get a chance to see and hear the mop-headed heroes.    "I've seen every kind of card you can imagine," said Deputy Sheriff J.M. King, assigned to guard the main hotel entrance.  "One guy had apparently passed out dozens of his business cards to these kids and told them it would get them in."   But it didn't.

City patrolman, D.R. Weaver, also on the hotel security detail, said he had many requests to sign hsi name to cards of all types, in hopes that in the confusion the similarity of his last name and that of the radio station manager's would be overlooked.

One, who would later only say she was Diane, 17, a recent Belaire High School graduate and a nurses' aide at a local hospital, tried to get past King at the door by wearing her uniform. "She told me somebody sent her over to set up an infirmary in case somebody was injured,"  King said.  "But she couldn't give me the name of who she was supposed to see or who sent her.  If she had, I might've let her get by."

Other girls donned maids' uniforms and tried to get into the hotel under the guise that they worked there.  "We haven't ever hired any 14 year old here, though." a hotel spokesman said, "We stopped them all."

Those who were lucky enough to get into the conference had to disguise their youth and subdue their emotions because they were sternly warned that they could be kicked out of the affair if they misbehaved.  But afterwards, hero worship took over again.   Dottie Bolieu of Texas City ran shrieking and sobbing across the lobby and collapsed into the arms of two waiting girlfriends.  "I touched George!  I touched George!" she wailed.   Then her friends joined her in the tearful episode.   No, they weren't crying because they hadn't touched Beatle George Harrison, "We're just so happy!  We're her best friends."

A For Worth girl, Martha Ezell, 16, grabbed the plate the Beatles' water pitcher sat on after the conference, but a hotel employee, with the explanation that he could have her jailed, retrieved her souvenir. 

Some of the older spectators at the press conference wondered just how official some of the press representatives were.  Two young girls, who claimed to be reporters form the Dallas Time-Herald, sported front row seats, and scraps of paper.  But they had forgotten to bring pencils.  One of the youthful reporters were overheard telling her companion that she hoped she didn't cry when she saw Paul.   the other was content to write "Ringo" over and over again very rapidly throughout the interviews.

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