You really haven’t lived until you work the concession stand at the annual Purcell Rotary Track Meet.

Especially the early shift.

Almost every one of the junior high track athletes comes armed with a $20 bill and an appetite.

And there were many of them this year with 16 teams invading the Bob Haley Track.

First rattle out of the box they want a blue Powerade and a Slim Jim. Ah, the breakfast of champions.

That comes to $3.50.

When you multiply that by about 15 thinclads per team you can quickly see that you need a lot of quarters, fives, 10s and ones to make change.

John Denny and I ran out of ones about an hour into our two hour shift.

Soon the 10s and fives became scarce as hen’s teeth as well.

We called Jennifer Smith to bring us some more change.

We didn’t need any $20 bills.

Had plenty.

As the day wears on the athletes branch out for popcorn, hotdogs, candy of all kinds and pizza when the 11 a.m. deadline is met for the local pizza pie maker.

The tracksters don’t quit coming back until their $20 is kaput.

We sold out of hotdogs by about 10:30.

The blue Powerade supply was drained by 11:30.

Almost to a person the kids would come to the window and say they wanted to purchase some candy.

What do you want would be the logical answer.

“What do you have,?” they would ask with regularity.

I can recite you the names of any of the 14 types of candy, some of which comes in regular or sour flavors, that the Purcell concession stand had to offer.

One eighth grade girl came up to me and said she wanted to buy some candy.

What kind?

“You tell me your favorite and that’s what I’ll buy,” she said.

She got Reese’s. Not sorry.

We had a couple of snafus in our morning shift.

One batch of popcorn was burned beyond recognition and there was not one but two pizza deliveries.

The only problem was the first one that we rapidly began selling wasn’t for the concessions stand.

It was for the coaches’ hospitality suite.

About the time Athletic Director Carol Testa found her pizza in our possession, the order for the concession stand arrived.

After we replenished what we had sold, things leveled out.

Still the kids kept coming all day. That is, until their $20 ran out.

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