KEN POORMAN lock haven pa

YMCA Boys Choir


YMCA Boy's Choir, Lock Haven, PA Surprised

We are trying to develop a history of the Lock Haven Y.M.C.A. Boy's Choir.  It was founded in 1953 by Jimmy Stout, and was active for ten years or more.  If you have any information about the choir, or photos or news clippings you can share with us, please submit your comments in the form below, or we will contact you if you like.  THANKS!

Lock Haven Y.M.C.A. Boys Choir 1953-54
 Robert Russell Schadt,

Photo courtesy of my cousin, Bobby Schadt

The Lock Haven Y

Click photo to enlarge
Lock Haven Y.M.C.A. Boys Choir 1955
Ruth Anna Miller, Accompanist
James Spotts, Choirmaster

I was in the YMCA choir for about two years, c1954 I think.  Jimmy Stout founded the choir in 1953 and was the Business Manager for the Choir for the duration.  Piano accompanists were Miss Ruth Anna Miller, Miss Pamela Blesh, Miss Dana Best, Ken "Kenny" Poorman, Mary Louide Miller . . . There were several choir directors, my cousin Robert R. Schadt, James A. "Jim" Spotts of WBPZ Radio, Russell C. Gillam, Barry Vannauker and Chris Dwyer.  Pop Ford was Manager of the Y at that time as I recall.

When I was in the choir, we practiced once a week in the little gray house that the Y owned on the corner of Grove and Water Streets (where the new Y building stands now).  My most memorable performances were a television concert by Channel TV-10 in Altoona, and one at the Hershey Park Bandshell.  I remember a big white 4x6' hardboard poster that had my name on it as accompanist at a Hershey Park concert, which Mom & Dad kept in the attic for many years.  Unfortunately I lost it in the 1972 flood in Lock Haven when I lived on Island Route (lower Water Street), four houses below the Constitution Bridge.  We also performed at Hecla Park, at Price Auditorium, and many churches in the region.  Jimmy Stout, Founder & Business Manager, used to sponsor a summer camp for us at Camp Rocky Point, near Queens Run between Lockport and Farrandsville PA.  We also went to swimming parties at the Renovo YMCA, and had many other activities.  Various parents chaperoned.

Contact Ken

Camp Rocky Point

If you remember any details about the Lock Haven YMCA Boy's Choir, please share them with me.

Thanks to those of you who submitted info about the choir and/or photos, especially Doug Andrews, Bobby Schadt, Bill Wolford and Roy Stout.  I can now add a few more photos to this page.  I still need help with details of the choir, especially the time frames for each of the Choir Directors.  Please continue to submit any info you may come across . . . THANKS!

Click photo to enlarge
Lock Haven Y.M.C.A. Boys Choir 1959
Pamela Blesh, Accompanist
Barry Vannauker, Director

Some of the places the choir performed were Hershey Park, Hecla Park, Knoebel's Grove Park, Saint Luke's Reformed Church in Lock Haven, Woolrich Community Center, WBPZ Radio, TV 10 Altoona, Altoona Bible Church, St. Paul's Episcopal Lock Haven, Price Auditorium at the College, Evangelical United Brethern (EUB) in Lock Haven, EUB in Jersey Shore, Renovo High School, Lock Haven Elks Lodge, Mill Hall Church of Christ, Avis EUB, Castanea EUB, Trinity Methodist Lock Haven, Avis Lutheran, Beech Creek Memorial Presbyterian, Jersey Shore First Methodist, Sugar Valley Area High School, Devitt Home in Allenwood, Osceola Methodist Church . . . Bill Laubscher just reminded me of Rockview State Penitentiary (8/19/2012) . . . (Remember any more?)

Click photo to enlarge
Lock Haven Y.M.C.A. Boys Choir 1960
Pamela Blesh, Accompanist
Barry Vannauker, Director
Click photo to enlarge
YMCA Boys Choir 1961
Pamela Blesh, Accompanist
Barry L. Vannauker, Director

Miss Blesh also playerd flute solos occasionally with the choir.  The choir members typically ranged from the fourth to the eighth grade.  I'll add more info to the site if any is received.  If you want your name listed as a former choir member, I can include members' names if you like - if you'll send yours to me in the comment form above.  Be sure to include your email address for verification.  thanks . . .

. . . an undated news article about the Choir . . . probably about 1956 . . . 


Choir member names . . .

Doug Andrews gave me some paper clippings from his scrapbook which I scanned, but subsequently had a computer crash, and you guessed it, I didn't have them backed up.  So I'll add names as people contact me or identify people in the above photos . . .

John Caskey, Ken Yarnell, Doug Andrews, Bill Laubscher, Dave Masters . . . . help please . . .


Thanks to The Express . . .
for many nice articles about the choir.