We want your Myrtle Beach memories.

You know, there’s the picture of that massive sandcastle you built as a child. And the shot of your first visit to Ocean Boulevard or your last trip to the Pavilion.

We’re looking for your favorite family photos and stories to include in a commemorative book that the Herald is compiling about the history of Myrtle Beach.

This year, Myrtle Beach is celebrating its 75th anniversary and the Herald is honoring that milestone with a special hardbound book, which will be distributed later this year.

A key part of this effort is finding folks who will share their photos and stories with us.

All we’re asking is that you send us any photos from your time in Myrtle Beach, a few sentences about the people in the pictures and details about when and where the shots were taken. We’d also appreciate it if you would let us know how we could return the photos, so please include a mailing address.

We can’t guarantee that every photo will appear in the book, but we’ll try to include as many as we can.

Our goal is to tell the story of the beach through the eyes of locals and visitors who have enjoyed this city by the sea.

The best way to reach us is by email. Feel free to contact Herald editor Charles Perry at charles.perry@myhorrynews.com.

You may also mail photos and letters to this address:

Myrtle Beach Herald

P.O. Box 50308

Myrtle Beach, S.C. 29579

Of course, if you’re not sure about what to send or you have other questions or concerns, Charles Perry can be reached at 488-7258.

We look forward to seeing your pictures and hearing your stories.

In the meantime, here are some reflections from our staff:

Robert Anderson

Sports editor, the Horry Independent

I grew up less than 25 miles from Myrtle Beach, but I don’t remember making very many trips to the beach when I was growing up.

My dad worked five nights a week at Stilley Plywood in addition to running a small farm with a vegetable garden as well as hogs, chickens, turkeys, guineas, corn and tobacco.

We filled one barn of tobacco a week, and that was done on Saturday, leaving little time for excursions to the beach.

Our Sundays were reserved for two church services at Valley Forge Baptist Church and a big Sunday dinner, often consisting of homegrown fried chicken or pork chops, rice and gravy, butterbeans, corn and biscuits.

After lunch, most of the kids in the neighborhood would meet to play basketball, football or baseball until about 4 or 5 o’clock when we would stop to get ready for the evening services at church.

My parents were firm believers in keeping the Sabbath holy, and that meant we didn’t buy or sell anything on Sunday.

I didn’t go the beach on Sunday until I was able to drive myself. I don’t advertise it much, but I do remember going to the beach a few times with my wife to lay out on the beach on Sunday afternoons, and probably even took my son to the Myrtle Beach Pavilion a few times when he was a kid in the late 1980s. If I did, we were always back in time for the church services that night. I do remember this one time when we got sunburned. That was a sure giveaway that we had been to the beach.

My earliest recollections of Myrtle Beach deal with family cookouts and seining trips with my parents and three sisters as well as an assortment of aunts, uncles and cousins.

I can’t remember if we went every year or not, but I recall pulling a long seine net that seemed like it was at least 100 feet long through the water.

I wasn’t very old and was probably more of a hindrance than a help, but I can vividly recall tugging away at the net and helping drag it through the waves and back to shore.

I remember catching mullets, spots and other fish as well as an assortment of crabs, jellyfish and small sharks. It was always exciting to see what came in with every haul.

I remember swimming and frolicking up and down the beach with my cousins. I remember one time when my cousin John Frank, who was visiting from Memphis, Tenn., got lost for what seemed like hours. I can still see the panic in everyone’s eyes that came with the fear that he might have drowned.

We always fried fish at the beach, and I guess they must have cooked a hamburger for me because I never liked fish or seafood. On the other hand, I may have been too excited about being at the beach to care if I ate or not. I really don’t remember.

After I got older, I went to the beach many times. Myrtle Beach State Park and the Myrtle Beach Pavilion were always favorite hangouts. I remember watching movies at three or four different theaters, including one trip to the Rivoli with my wife and some friends to see the “Texas Chain Saw Massacre.” I can still hear the screaming when an employee cranked up a chain saw and ran up and down the aisle a couple of times.

I also remember when one of my cousins and I spent the weekend in a motel on Ocean Boulevard and sneaked into what I think was the Rivoli to see “Last Tango in Paris.”

My parents still don’t know about that one. We also did a few other things that I won’t divulge.

When I was a student at Conway High School in the early 1970s and for many years afterwards, I made quite a few trips to the beach to see the annual Conway-Myrtle Beach football game. That was back when Conway had Myrtle Beach’s number. The Seahawks had some good teams, but they couldn’t beat the Tigers.

Looking back, I have a lot of happy memories of Myrtle Beach. The rides, the sunburn, the sights and sounds of the Myrtle Beach Pavilion. I had a blast.

Robert Anderson • 488-7244

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