You can take the man out of Nebraska, but you can’t take Nebraska out of the man…
This post gives us a glimpse into the man from Nebraska who became a traveling rock star with one of the most successful bands of the 1970s. Whether wearing t-shirts, or displaying a bumper sticker on his amp, Randy promoted Nebraska and Scottsbluff businesses. He was never far from home as he traveled the world.
Randy wearing a t-shirt advertising the Frank Implement Company, a John Deere dealership which was owned by the father of a close friend of his. Randy also worked at Frank Implement after leaving Rick Nelson and The Stone Canyon Band before being called back to California by Rick. Fate took over as he soon met up with Glenn Frey, Don Henley and Bernie Leadon.
Photo by Peter Mazel ~ Nov 13, 1973
Randy wearing a Cawley’s Potato Chip t-shirt, another Scottsbluff company.
Photo taken at Mile High Stadium ~ Denver, CO ~ Aug 8, 1976
Photo appeared on the cover of Western Sky Magazine ~ Weekend of Aug 21-22, 1976
Randy wearing a University of Nebraska t-shirt ~ Photo taken at The Forum
Los Angeles, CA ~ Oct 1976
Randy had a Frank Implement bumper sticker displayed on his amp ‘Nothing runs like a Deere’ ~ Photo taken at Wembley Arena ~ London, England ~ Apr 26, 1977
Randy wearing a Nebraska t-shirt ~ Photo on the back cover of his second solo album ‘One More Song’ ~ Released Oct 1, 1980
Randy’s publishing company was called ‘Nebraska Music/United Artists Music Co., Inc./Glasco Music ~ Photo of 45 RPM ‘Hearts On Fire’, 1980
Randy admits that there is a little bit of Nebraska in his songs. ~ Alliance Times-Herald Alliance, Nebraska ~ Jul 6, 1983 (Click to enlarge)
It seemed that Randy’s intention was always to move back to his peach-colored stucco house in Mitchell which is in Scotts Bluff County. His wife and children lived there while he was on the road. ~ Argus-Leader ~ Sious Falls, South Dakota ~ Sep 7, 1975 (Click to enlarge)
In 1975, Randy and his wife, Jennifer, had an upscale shopping mall built in their hometown of Scottsbluff, Nebraska at 1414 E. 20th St. They were both involved in the design of the building along with the local designer JT Arnold. Photo: Google Map of Scottsbluff showing locations of: Randall Square which was at 1414 E. 20th St. ~ Frank Implement Co., and Scottsbluff Senior High School (Click to enlarge)
An announcement that Randy and Jennifer’s store, Jenny-Ann LTD, would be opening in April of 1980. Jenny-Ann LTD was located on the top floor of Randall Square and was one of the first stores in the area to carry Cabbage Patch Dolls and Hello Kitty items. Jenny-Ann LTD also carried children’s clothing and was on the opposite end of the top floor as the Loft Restaurant.
The Alliance Times-Herald ~ Alliance, Nebraska ~ Mar 31, 1980
The Loft Restaurant (which served great prime ribs) ~ The Gering Courier ~ Gering, Nebraska ~ Apr 3, 1980
An ad for an Exclusive Showing of Antique Dolls at Jenny-Ann LTD ~ The Gering Courier ~ Gering, Nebraska ~ May 29, 1980
The Randall Square General Contractor was Countryside Incorporated from Alliance, Nebraska. The Gering Courier ~ Gering, Nebraska ~ Aug 7, 1980
The Randall Square Building at 1414 E. 20th St., as shown on Google Maps, mid-2020. I gathered from reading different articles that the citizens of Scottsbluff thought the design of the building was ahead of its time.
It seemed the whole city wanted to wish Randall Square their best as congratulatory ads appeared in the local paper for Randall Square’s Grand Opening. These are some of the adds that appeared in The Gering Courier ~ Gering, Nebraska ~ Aug 7, 1980.
Some of the companies who purchased ads for the Grand Opening were the suppliers of products for Randall Square. These ads also appeared in The Gering Courier ~ Gering, Nebraska ~ Aug 7, 1980.
Some of the other merchants at Randall Square were:
Maxi’s (Silk Flower Arrangements Made by Hand) ~ The Gering Courier ~ Gering, Nebraska ~ Aug 7, 1980
The Spectacle Shop and Contact Lens Center ~ The Gering Courier ~ Gering, Nebraska ~ Sep 18, 1980
The Loft opened to Banquet Facilities for Groups of 25 to 75 ~ The Gering Courier ~ Gering, Nebraska ~ Oct 23, 1980
The Designer women’s store was owned by Randy’s cousin, Dorothy Van Wyngarden. Her store was located on the second floor. ~ Chadron Record ~ Chadron, Nebraska ~ Nov 22, 1980
Some of the other stores located at Randall Square were a Coca Cola store, a bridal shop, a barber and a sun tanning salon.
Jenny-Ann LTD participated in the 1981 First Baby Contest in Scotts Bluff County ~ The Gering Courier ~ Gering, Nebraska ~ Jan 1, 1981
Close up of the Jenny-Ann LTD ad for the 1981 First Baby Contest in Scotts Bluff County ~ The Gering Courier ~ Gering, Nebraska ~ Jan 1, 1981
After leaving the Eagles, Randy returned to his native Scottsbluff, Nebraska and bought an 80-acre farm to “grow my own vegetables and get as far away from the music buisness as I could.” He soon discovered there wasn’t much to do in the slow lane but drink beer and roar around town on his Harley-Davidson. “I realized I’d changed so much,” he observes, “and I missed the city. I thought I could get away, but music’s in my blood.” ~ Bassist-Composer Randy Meisner Courageously Bailed Out of the Eagles So That He Could Rock His Own Boat, by David Sheff, Jan 12, 1981
It is my understanding that Scottsbluff resident, Randy Foos, purchased Randall Square after Randy and Jennifer divorced in October of 1981.
An Auction for the fixtures, shelving and show cases used in the Jenny-Ann LTD store was held on June 5, 1982. ~ The Alliance Times-Herald ~ Alliance, Nebraska ~ Jun 4, 1982
The Designer, the store owned by Randy’s cousin, stayed at Randall Square after it was sold by Randy. ~ The Gering Courier ~ Gering, Nebraska ~ Dec 16, 1982
Where Are They Now? – Meisner Works on Music
So he hung up his bass guitar for a while to return to his family in Mitchell, near Scottsbluff. “At the time, we were going to open a toy store and just kick back and be in Nebraska,” said Meisner in a recent telephone conversation from Los Angeles. “But living out in L.A. for 10 years, it had kind of grown on me. I hadn’t realized how much the music and the industry were in me. So I came back to L.A. There wasn’t a whole bunch for me to do back there (in Nebraska), anyway.” ~ Omaha World-Herald ~ Omaha, Nebraska ~ Oct 14, 1984
It looks like in December of 2003, Randall Square was sold again. According to the November 4, 2020 Nebraska Assessors Online Data Sheet of the building, it is now 100% office space and is known as ‘The Square’.
Photo: Image from the 2018 Appraisal Property Record Card
Ten years later, and after Randy sold Randall Square, The Gering Courier remembered the Grand Opening of their native son’s Randall Square. ~ The Gering Courier ~ Gering, Nebraska ~ Aug 9, 1990