vernon country club


Thought you would like to see some pics of the famous watering holes that Buster and friends haunted back in the day.  

The Vernon Country Club was an (in)famous hangout for Hollywood’s elite in the days before and during Prohibition.  Just outside the LA County line, it stayed open all night, and it continued to serve liquor after the Volstead Act passed, along with a little illegal gambling.  It wasn’t a Country Club per se - one patron described it as “a roadhouse in the middle of a beet field with parking out front.”  Hollywood’s elite used to stage impromptu performances there, and you could catch Keaton, Arbuckle and even Chaplin pulling stunts and playing practical jokes at the Vernon.

The Ship Cafe in Venice Beach is mentioned as a favorite of Keaton & Arbuckle’s in several biographies.  Legend has it that the boys decided to liven the place up one night and Roscoe pretended to set Buster’s behind on fire with a table lamp, whereupon Keaton decamped through one of the portholes.  

Finally, Agua Caliente in Tijuana - prohibition-free playground just south of the border!  The racetrack & hotel were frequented by Hollywood elite during the 1920s.  Don’t know about now, but it used was still a nice place to visit back in the 60s when I lived in San Diego.  I actually won a little money there!