Summer season Dempsey and Florence pull their 7 children out of school early each year. Suitcases packed station wagon loaded, end of year homework assignments competed on the road and mailed in from around the country .Dempsey and oldest son stay at home to work on next years itinerary for barnstorm basketball teams, bookings for appearances and shows are attended for fairs and summer events. Final accommodations, choreography, staff, media set for annual national finals for Miss American Teenager competition and crowning in Palisades Park New Jersey. Training camp preparations for basketball teams that arrive in the fall. Oldest son works in office when Dempsey is on the road with his baseball teams. Florence spends the summer driving every state west of the Mississippi and a few on the other side with 6 children town to town hotel to hotel. State by state state finals are held for Miss American Teenager pageants. We all worked the door , set up , the press etc. My mom would also check out possible players for the coming seasons basketball tours. She would plant us in a movie theater across the country where we'd watch movies for hours as she went to scout players then we would hit the road agin.
We stayed in comped Presidential Suites at hotels such as The Brown palce in Denver. Palmer House Chicago, are provided for Florence and her brood of kids in major cities . Holiday Inn stays and educational site seeing along the way. Florence runs the pageant business on the road with 6 kids in tow who all I have jobs: ballroom set up, florists, gate and program sales, timing interviews with judges, tours for the contestants, photo shoots with Governers etc etc , My mom made stops in major cities to scout basketball players for the Harlem Queens or Texas CowGirls,, in the fall 85-120 recruits would vie for for tryouts only 8-12 would make each team. Return home in August . The last days before school began were packed with dad time. My mom had driven thousands of miles with us for 3 months eating 3 meals a day in restaurants, living out of suitcases and hotels. My dad was ready to play--- swimming at Lake Ripley, a day at Madison Zoo, picnics, Outdoor Movie Theaters, Museums, Pizza, Dryans Ice Cream Parlor, backroad exursions to where ever we wound up. This was all a blast and purposeful to give his wife and mother of 7- 3 weeks to regroup before 11 baseball players would leave our home and 8 young women would appear to stay and prepare for training and newbie tryouts for their World Famous Texas CowGirls Professional touring barnstorm basketball team.
Fall Basketball training camps for returning players, new recruit indoctrinations on media readiness, moral charecter routines travel rules are all in session Teams hit the road playing 7 days a week twice on Sundays in October thru May. Our house is frequented by halftime acts, beds full of athletes and entertainers.
Winter my dad or mom are on the road with his pro basketball team we are in school take trips in car or by plane on weekends and a few times we take off school for longer periods during the regular school season. Once in a while we had Mrs Levi or Mrs Aggie as nannys never for buisness but when my mom and dad could get away alone together... with 7 kids and a business that was an octopus it took alot of work to make it happen. It was an exciting childhood!!!!