First East Texas team to make the Little League Big Show

Published 5:44 pm Friday, August 11, 2017

By Dickie Dixon

Special to The Leader

On Wednesday evening in Waco the Lufkin Little Leaguers won their way to play in the Little League World Series in Williamsport, Pennsylvania, purportedly the first East Texas team to make the Little League Big Show.  Williamsport touches my life in two ways.  First, I lived near there at Jersey Shore while my family was affiliated with New Tribes Mission.

Secondly, Lutcher and Moore, the famed sawmilling men who founded the big mill at Orange in the 1870s moved to Texas from the Williamsport area.

This story revolves around the first point of contact.  When we lived there, my daughters and I drove through there on our way to church at Montoursville on Wednesdays to a church pastored by Jim Westgate’s brother.  Most every time we stopped at an ice cream parlor called Sunset Ice Cream.

Now usually any time I enter an ice cream parlor I am a double dipper, i.e., I order two dips.  On my first visit to Sunset, it was no different.  I ordered my two dips and obtained what the girls wanted, but—much to my surprise—I couldn’t eat both of them.  Now this was a circumstance I had never encountered:  two ice cream dips I couldn’t consume.  So, after that first visit, I cut it back to one.  Now I am writing this for the benefit of Bubba Holland, Sandy Bate, Judy Maddux, her husband Bud Maddux, the assistant coach Malcolm Deason, and all the players that I can recommend Sunset Ice Cream Parlor.

When I found out that they were headed to Williamsport, I knew I had to tell the story, but I had no idea that Sunset would still be there.  So, after dutifully checking it out on the Internet, sure enough, it is. Now I have no idea whether the dips are still as big as they once were, but I can attest the ice cream is great.

So, in my hats off column to the Boys of Summer of 2017 from Lufkin, Texas, here’s my hope that you win, win, win there.  All of us are with you.  And, if you get to go to Sunset Ice Cream Parlor, I want to hear about it, because never before, until I met my match there had I ever been conquered by two dips of ice cream.