The Academy Award ceremony broadcast in April of 1969 did not have an official host. Traditional host Bob Hope didn’t do the show that year. Instead, the producers gave jokes to stars such as Ingrid Bergman and Sidney Poitier. Best picture of the year for 1968 was the musical ‘Oliver!’…which many movie fans consider a bad choice, because it beat Stanley Kubrick’s ‘2001: A Space Odyssey.’ No mistake for best actress…it was a tie, between repeat winner Katharine Hepburn for ‘The Lion in Winter,’ and first-time movie star Barbra Streisand for ‘Funny Girl.’ And Mel Brooks got an Oscar for writing ‘The Producers.’
The Mississippi was flooding that spring. The river was expected to crest in La Crosse at 4 feet above flood stage. Prairie du Chien was declared a disaster area, because of flooded streets near the river.
Super Bowl champion quarterback Joe Namath of the Jets was arrested for drunk driving in Miami. Joe was stopped while going 70 miles an hour at 4 in the morning.
And Mitchell Hall at La Crosse State was hosting popular acts like the Baja Marimba Band and the Serendipity Singers, in 1969, yesterday in La Crosse.