Dated February 24, 1984, written by Gregg Dewalt

There is probably nobody in Corinth who sells more popcorn than Tommy Taylor does.

Taylor, a lifelong resident of this area, has one of the best jobs around. He’s the man in the concessions stand at Corinth’s YMCA.

As springtime approaches, Taylor is busy making preparations for the upcoming summer season of activities at the YMCA.

Taylor will begin opening up the stand in April and be there for the next eight months. Only after the last out is made and the last touchdown scored will he call it a season.

During the long summer months, Taylor is at the YMCA complex everyday from 1 p.m. until about 10 p.m. at night. “I don’t ever get tired of it.” says Taylor.

The middle-aged Taylor has been applying his talents at the “Y” for the last 11 years and says he loves his job. “I enjoy it a lot,” Taylor says with a smile from ear to ear. “I don’t have any plans of retiring anytime soon.”

To do a job such as Taylor’s, a person obviously has to love kids a lot. “I’m in direct contact with about 2,000 kids each summer,” Taylor remarks. “And I know about 95 percent of them by their first names. I see them everywhere I go.”

The kids who see him everyday know him as Tommy, not Mr. Taylor, which he prefers. “I get a lot of satisfaction from the kids. I think it helps keep me young.”

Taylor isn’t always assured of getting the concessions stand at the YMCA. Instead, he has to have the YMCA’s Board of Directors’ permission to operate it each season. For the last 11 years, he has had the board’s approval. “I’ll do it all over again if the opportunity presented itself to me,” he adds. “It’s a lot of fun.”

If a person doesn’t recognize Tommy from the concessions stand, most Alcorn County residents surely recognize the truck he drives. It’s the only one in the county that has a ton of autographs on it from kids young and old. “They started doing it last year and it just caught on.” Taylor comments. “I don’t care if they do it.”

Part of the satisfaction of the job is seeing kids grow up. “I saw one boy the other day who I used to sell popcorn to and now he and his wife have a baby, Taylor said with a little bit of pride in his voice.

Making a lot of money is of little importance to Taylor, who says it’s fun just to meet people. “I’ve made a little money, but I’ve made a million friends.”

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