Maverick Market & Jitney Jr

Maverick Markets & Jitney Jr dotted the landscape in the 1970s, and 1980s in and around Corpus Christi, I stopped at one in Rockport, another in Victoria while riding around. My personal 'go to' one was just south of Leopard on Old Robstown road (Up River Road) across from a Foodtown. This place got a lot of dinero from me for Icees, chips like Doritos, and 32 oz Cokes. When we needed beer in 1970s, this was place to go, that is unless Texas Star on corner of Nueces Bay Blvd across from Old Mexico restaurant had a special on Billy Beer or Texas Pride. Can't believe we drank that, was rotgut but hey, $1.99 a six pack! The Maverick Markets, well, most of them, were always open ended, that is front relatively open compared to what convenience stores are today. This one had roll up front so pretty much whole front opened up! The mascot was little cowboy, not Dallas Cowboy (boo!) but more of a W. B. Ray Texan cowboy (yaaa!!)

About this time in 1970s, you had another player in the market called Jitney Junior, which eventually changed name to shorter Jitney Jr. Concept was same, sell lots of beer, sodas, smokes, candy, chips. Everything else minor the big money was cold stuff though. Still is. There was a Jitney Junior right behind Boat & Net at Staples at Swantner. When we lived at 642 Naples for a few years cheap rent thanks to dad's friend Lloyd Remple, I used to ride my bike over there to this Jitney Jr & buy comics. My friend, Danny Hernandez of the Hernandez clan at 610 Naples, the oldest kid Frank worked there. Really nice guy. But kind of like Al's News Stands downtown, they lumped in all the books there together. So near Archie, Superman, was uh, Playboy & Penthouse. In Catholic schools they didn't teach us much about stuff like this you know. I was 11 of 12 then, and picked up a Penthouse, as all the books were out of Franks' view, besides he was having a smoke, you could smoke anywhere then. I opened the book up only to see what Betty & Veronica looked like naked, whoa! No wonder Archie was trying to date both of them.

Back to Maverick Markets, possibly my favorite (not go to but favorite) was the one on Padre Island pas the cut off road where to turn to go to Port A.

This one got a lot of my money. Marketing genius to whoever discovered that Adolph's Meat Tenderizer really did knock down the stinging pain of jellyfish and especially Portuguese Man O War! This Maverick market used to have a pyramid of bottles of the stuff, letting people know to 'keep a shaker handy!' and needless to say, damned near everyone I knew on the beck in late 70s/early 80s had one in glovebox or trunk for stings. This Maverick Market probably led state of Texas Maverick markets in beer...and ice sales.

One time I stayed at beach for 2 weeks straight and only went in town for provisions, like beer, ice, honeybuns, bread, all from this location. There was a ice truck there one time, never had seen that but early morning they loading up 1000s of pounds of ice for coming day. Coming in a close second was a small Maverick Market on Brownlee near Staples. In early 1970s when we moved to the 642 Naples house, I would walk to this location & buy the new glass 32 oz Cokes, sometimes Sprites, some chips and go sit in the middle of Louisiana Parkway near Menger Elementary like I owned it.

Sometimes there would be 2-5 of us, so this place did good business. Also behind this place on corner of Ayres was a Churches Fried Chicken place, instead of buying sodas crammed with ice from them, would buy a chicken meal of some sort, then walk next door (ok there was some Laundromat between

them) to Maverick Market & buy those ice cold 32 oz bottles, were at the time about 39 cents. Sometimes we all just sat out in front of this location enjoying friends company & good meal.

I am not sure when Jitney Jr disappeared from the Texas and Corpus Christi market, but they never could overtake Maverick Markets. Then one day, Maverick Markets changed name to Stripes. Change it back, stripes is dumb name, I think of prison wear at County when I think of Stripes. It is what it is though and they still get my money when I come down to Corpus Christi and Padre Island to visit. But sure miss the really open, friendly concept of the old Maverick Markets!

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