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Hippie Reunion

April 27, 2015


I made a magazine, The Portable Wall, in 1977 because Wilbur Wood had us do a class project that had to do with journalism. Wilbur had edited the University of Montana student newspaper, the Kaimin, in its golden era, the 1960s.

I did the P.Wall for 10 years, printed the pages on an offset press and the cover on a letterpress. Circulation eventually reached 500. I think we made about 30 issues and a couple of poetry books in cahoots with a bunch of mostly Missoula hippies like Dirk Lee and Dave Thomas. Also Mark Fryberger, Mike Fiedler, Dana Graham and Frank Dugan. Others.
Initially the magazine kept our 1967 Missoula food service cafeteria hippie group in touch. Now we have Facebook.

The number of freshman student hippies in Missoula after the famous 1967 “Summer of Love” was perhaps 2 dozen. I wanted desperately to belong, so I tried to look hip. You know, hair, work boots, cheap army surplus jacket. They let me sit with them at lunch! One even asked if I knew where to buy some pot. (I didn’t, not yet!) Straight students either ignored us or expressed dislike. This caused us to hold together. In my case, I was lonesome without the hippie folk. I had gone to high school in Dillon and Missoula seemed large and impersonal.
Now, for the first time ever, Brenda Fleming Skornogosky and Kim Thompson Irons are creating an opportunity for a person-to-person reunion of our group of hippie friends! I’ve already invited Mark Fryberger. Virginia Baker Ogden wondered about the whereabouts of Linda (Bin) Sheble and Becky Cuffe. I sent an email to Larry D. Felton, but heard nothing. I couldn’t locate Scott Hendryx, Mike Brown, Steve Starr, Skip Reising, or any others. There were certainly others! Steve Spoja, Bill Yenne, Jerry Berner, and John Herman come to mind. Sadly, John Herman is dead. Old hippies eventually die, or they get married or turn into fussy old curmudgeons.

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