Larry LaPrise,83, who wrote "The Hokey Pokey" for patrons...


April 11, 1996

Larry LaPrise,83, who wrote "The Hokey Pokey" for patrons of a ski resort and saw it become a classic, died April 4 in Boise, Idaho, after a long illness.

A singer, he was leading the Ram Trio at Sun Valley's Ram Bar when he concocted the song-cum-dance for the apres ski crowd. It was an instant hit.

" 'The Hokey Pokey' is like a square dance, really," he said in 1992. "You turn around. You shake it all about. Everyone is in a circle and it gets them all involved."

The Ram Trio recorded the song in 1949. Four years later, bandleader Ray Anthony bought the rights and recorded it on the B-side of another novelty record, "The Bunny Hop."

Benjamin Eisenstadt,89, who rediscovered saccharin and turned Sweet 'N Low into a pink-packeted sweetening staple, died Monday in New York of complications from bypass surgery. The company says it has sales of about $100 million a year.

George W. Jenkins,88, who began his grocery store careesweeping floors and went on to build Publix Super Markets into Florida's largest employer, died Monday in Lakeland, Fla.

Pub Date: 4/11/96

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