Sometimes magical things happen here at MBIP! Last week I put up a post about how Maurie’s Candies in Pekin has been bought by a new owner and it’s being refurbished and brought back to life. If you missed that, here’s a link to the post: Shop Hop @ Maurie’s Fine Candies Of Pekin.
Lelonie Luft is the new owner and she graciously gave me a cool tour of Maurie’s including a stop in the basement where there’s graffiti on the walls from the late ‘60’s, ‘70’s and ‘80’s.
I wrote in a caption: “If anyone out there remembers writing any of this, please let me know!” It was kind of a joke, but deep down I really hoped I’d hear from someone.
So imagine how thrilled I was to get this email the next day:
“Hello Marty my name is Tracy Dirst and my son just texted me the link to your blog so I could see where my husband Steve Dirst wrote on Mauries basement, then how I had written right under him, Tracy Tegmeyer,...that was done on purpose...but someone else wrote, “married.” That was sweet of them and yes we were married and still are! We met at Mauries in 1979, I was the candy girl. My husband, who had worked for Maurie 10 years prior as one of the “basement magazine/newspaper guys”, came in and asked for two bags of candy for his rug rats, and the rest is history. Thanks so much for the walk down memory rode!”
Well, I couldn’t let it go with just an email, so I’ve arranged to meet Steve and Tracy at Maurie’s and meet them where it all began, in Maurie’s basement where their Graffiti Love was born! To the MBIP Mobile!
We are off and driving down 474 en-route to Maurie’s Fine Candies in Pekin. And yes, I still need to get some prescription sunglasses to ward off this horrible sunshine that rears its bright head in the daytime. Aaahh!
Here we are back at Maurie’s Fine Candies on Court Street in Pekin.
Wow, it’s just been a week and the place looks even better, Lelonie is really doing some great things with this place. If you haven’t checked it out, you should stop by and see this work in progress.
And this is really cool, she just got the original Maurie’s sign out of storage. This sign is decades old and Lelonie is hoping to restore it and make a display out of it in the store. Love it!
Okay, I’ve been told that Steve and Tracy are down here in the basement, let’s go down and meet them...
And here they are down in Maurie’s basement, checking out graffiti from decades gone by. Neither of them have been down here for years and they said it really brought back a ton of memories.
There’s Tracy pointing to the graffiti that made this all happen...
Steve put his name here in 1969 and ten years later Tracy put her name below his. Steve worked here in the ‘60’s and Tracy was a candy counter girl in 1979. Steve wasn’t working here then, but he was a customer who came in now and again and Tracy said that one day he asked her to help him pick out a birthday card for one of his son's friends and she really started to fall in love with him. This crush continued until one day in 1980 when Steve pulled up on a motorcycle and Tracy told him she had no idea that he drove a motorcycle. He asked her out for a motorcycle ride and that was the start of them dating and eventually getting married. That led to someone writing, “Married” in between their names. This May is their 35th wedding anniversary and Lelonie said they could get remarried in Maurie’s! Stay tuned for that here on MBIP! I love this story!
Here’s Steve and Tracy posing by their graffiti love! Too cool!
Steve’s pointing to more graffiti he put on this shelf...
“Bob Dylan Is Great.” Steve said he’s still a Dylan fan and...
Here’s another piece of Dylan graffiti he put on the walls down here. Now let’s take a look at some of the other words on the walls down here...
This is a cartoon of Tony, who Steve said he worked with for years. He wasn’t sure who drew this cartoon of Tony though.
Somebody loves Judy! I actually saw another piece of graffiti dedicated to loving Judy, but the photo didn’t turn out, I wonder how Judy got so much love here at Maurie’s?
Oh. Never mind.
Steve and Tracy told me that Corky Mansfield was the manager here at Maurie’s and was Maurie’s right hand man. His sons worked here too and here’s his son’s Dan’s name on this beam...
And his other son, Randy is represented over here.
Back in the day, Maurie’s was also a news agency and that’s what went on here in the basement and Steve worked down here for the agency business while candy was being sold upstairs.
Steve’s pointing to the old distribution schedules are still on the wall from years gone by, above the conveyor belt that sent the magazines up to the trucks.
And I still hope to meet Larry! Anybody out there have any information on this guy?
Hey, what’s that say over there...
Meanwhile, back at the Adult Literature section at Maurie’s...
Lelonie is hinting it’s time for me to get moving along! Thanks to Steve and Tracy for meeting me at Maurie’s and sharing their graffiti love story! This is one of my favorite MBIP moments! We’ll see you all tomorrow!
Maurie’s Fine Candies Of Pekin
522 Court Street
Related Post: Shop Hop @ Maurie’s Fine Candies Of Pekin.
My friend and frequent MBIP guest star, Amber had some surgery today and will be laid up for a couple of weeks. Let’s all wish her a speedy recovery and I look forward to having her as a guest star back here on MBIP real soon! Get well and feel better, Amber, we all love you!
P.S. I used the picture of her and Danielle from Amber’s birthday party so Danielle doesn’t get jealous and think Amber’s getting all the attention here.
P.S.S. Just a subtle reminder to throw out there...pain pills are meant to be shared with friends! Ha ha ha! Have a speedy recovery, Amber!