Okay, this is insane. I didn’t totally believe it was real when I saw this old advertisement come across my twitter feed the other day:
New! Dick Clark Action Tours, Inc. Summer ’68 Action Tour for Teenagers! Hollywood! Hawaii! Mexico! 21 dazzling days of freedom & fun! Come on along! Aug. 9th to 29th. Only $775 from Los Angeles. See Happening ’68 in Action!
I mean, what?!?
It seems so unbelievable. What parent in their right mind would allow their teenager to go off with a bunch of strangers to Hollywood and Hawaii and Mexico for three weeks? Sure, parenting was considerably more laissez-faire back then, but come on.
As wild as it seems, somebody actually thought this was a good idea. And that someone was Dick Clark, the world’s oldest teenager who would’ve been 38 that summer. “Happening ’68” was a Saturday afternoon music show on ABC TV hosted by Mark Lindsay and Paul Revere of the Raiders. It was apparently popular enough for ABC to create a weekday spin-off (“It’s Happening”) that debuted in July. So it’s no surprise that Dick Clark Productions thought they had their finger on the pulse, so why not extend the brand and cash in? But how could a travel program for teenagers possibly work?