by Will Mason McDaniel
I worked at Rainbow Skating Rink as a floor guard and clean up person . On this night Joe who ran the rink for his brother who owned it and asked
me if I would like to work a private party.
I am 17 years old and love to skate and this was a Friday night so I didn’t have school the next day. Joe told me all I had to do was give out the skates,
put them up when they were finished, and lock up the rink . He also told me that their would be two men that would let in the people they wanted and I
didn’t have anything to do with that. Then he told me that it would pay $50.00 dollars.
Well in 1957 that was a lot of money. I told him yes. The only thing he left out was who’s party it was. We locked up the rink and Joe went home. About
a hour later two men came in from the Terrace Room next door. This was a fine Dinning Establishment which was part of the same building. There was
also a Swimming Pool next to it. You couldn’t go from the skating rink to the Terrace Room but you could come into the rink from there.
These two men let in about 100 to 150 people and as long as I had been working there I didn’t know anybody, not one single person. I gave out the
skates and then I went out and skated with them. Everything was going fine for about a hour. All of a sudden I looked up and Elvis had walked into the
rink. Elvis had been at the Terrace Room. He would go over there and eat each time before skating. I got off the floor an gave Elvis his skates. Now I
know who’s party it is. We all went back to skating.
About 30 minutes later someone started blowing a whistle. I looked around and all of the females were getting off the floor. The men were going half at
one end of the rink and half at the other end. I had heard of the different type of games that they played at these parties. Now I am going to play too. I
looked and saw Elvis at the other end. I turned and told the guy next to me, you know I would love to get hold of Elvis. The guy looked at me and then
called down the floor, Elvis this guy said he want’s to get hold of you. Elvis looked down the floor to me and shook his head OK.
They blew the whistle and we all started towards each other. We would get down on one knee and have the other leg out straight in front of us. Then
you would try to knock the other person down. At this time it was a free for all. Well Elvis and I met in the middle of the rink. About 5 minutes later
when I woke up Elvis was standing over me, they had a wet rag on my forehead and Elvis had a towel in his hand and was fanning me with it.He was
saying he was sorry, I told him it was his party so let’s play some more. Everyone went back on the floor and lined up again.
One of the girls blew the whistle and everyone started down the floor. Well now I am mad so I am going to lay Elvis out. We met in the middle, and
about 5 minutes later when I woke up for the second time it was the same thing again. They had a wet towel on my head and Elvis was standing over me
fanning me and saying how sorry he was. I told him again it’s your party so lets go play some more. We all went back for a third time and everyone lined
up again. Someone blew the whistle and Elvis and I started down the floor towards each other.
Every one else stayed on the rail to see what was going to happen this time. This time when we collided I stood up and looked down to see Elvis laid
out cold in the middle of the floor. I said to myself, these people are going to kill me. I skated off the floor as everyone was coming on the floor to see
how Elvis was. I went and hid under some tables at the far end of the rink. A few minutes later Red West came over and looked under the table and
then called to Elvis, he’s over here. Elvis came over, bent down and looked at me, with his finger he motion to me to come out from under the table.
You need to under stand that my father drove race cars. A friend of his was the Bardahl oil additive dealer in Memphis. He would give me boxes
and boxes of tee shirts free and I would always wear them skating. I crawled out from under the table and stood up, Elvis standing right in front of
me looking real mean. Red West was standing at my right shoulder. I was scared to death but I didn’t have anywhere that I could run to and hide. Elvis
looked at me and then looked at my tee-shirt, looked at me again and then looked at my tee-shirt again. ( Bardahl ) Red, I like him, give him the
phone number at the house and he can come up anytime. Elvis turned and skated away,Red reached in his pocket, pulled out a pen and paper, wrote
down the phone number at Graceland , handed it to me then turned and skated away.
Here I am, I have just knocked Elvis Presley out, have been given the phone number at Graceland , a invitation to come up anytime I wanted, and
they were not mad at me for what I had done. That is how I met Elvis Presley in 1957 when I was 17 years old. We were friends for 20 years and the last
time I saw him was 3 weeks before he died. Close Page