growing-up-in-beaver

Sometimes it’s nice to reminisce about the good ol’ days.

After Allie’s lost businesses articles and all of the ‘Ten signs you might be from…’ articles we have had, it got me thinking about how things were when I was a kid growing up in Beaver, way back in the 80s and 90s.

Things were simpler then. We walked two miles uphill each way to school and we all started working when we were 7! It was so tough. Kids these days have it so easy…

That should have been enough to weed the teens out from reading the rest of this article. Now we can talk about how it really was!!

Beaver back then was awesome! College Square was the elementary school through 6th grade, and then you went right to the high school. 7-12th grade. None of this middle school nonsense! Third Street was lined with the best spots for kids and teens. It was a great place to grow up and a great time to do it.

College Square

College Square left me with a ton of great memories! Mrs. Giannette for 1st grade would have to be my fondest. I had, how should I say… “complications” going to school and she was always there to give me a hug and wipe the tears.

Also, she used brown, white and pink chalk on that 3 chalk holder to draw our cursive lines on the chalkboard, and she called it Chocolate-Vanilla-Strawberry. Anyone that can relate cursive to ice cream is top notch in my book!

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Moving up a few grades, you have Mrs. Grant. She was notorious for passing out Hershey kisses to the kids…. but also for the dreaded desk dumping. Yikes.

There was that one kid that just couldn’t keep things neat and always got his desk dumped out. There’s always one…

Upper Elementary

Now we get in to the upper grades of elementary. You know, when you felt like the “seniors” of the school! Mr. Ciani and Mr. Schmersal taught us in those grades.

Their paddles hanging with care on their chalkboard was a reminder to keep ourselves in line. Didn’t one of them have holes in it? The rumor was that made it sting even worse!

Thankfully, my butt was never on the receiving end of that, but I sure remember kids who were. Tough love – that’s what that is!

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Lunch Ladies & Gym Class

How about Mrs. Chaffee?? She made being a lunch lady cool before Adam Sandler was there to sing about it! Always yielding a pruning knife, Mrs. Chaffee made her rounds cutting apples to ensure you actually ate the fruit your mom packed for you.

<<<secret time. I never ate the fruit>>>

The parachute was always the best gym day, and if you got picked to clean the erasers, well..that was a big deal! I don’t even think classrooms have chalkboards anymore!!

We had filmstrips and carbon copies. Things sure have changed, geesh.

Next Stop, BHS!

As a 7th grader, I remember how truly overwhelming it was to wander those halls, especially with the bigger kids around. Oh, boy!

We were there back in the days before internet, when the Echo was still printed and we had typing class…on typewriters!

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If you were bad, you would get to spend the day in the rubber room. There were atria between some of the classrooms in the 200’s hall.

I never really understood why those were there. They didn’t have any plants in them, outside of maybe some grass. Although, I do have vague memories of a large fake horse ending up in the area between the cooking room and the art room. Does anyone know what that was about??

We had great teachers like Mrs. Shugert, Mrs. Rodwell, and Mr. Myers teaching English (and loving the Pens), Mr. Riggs and Mr. Amsler in Social Studies, and who could forget Mr. Payne’s math classes?! I actually just shivered a little remembering those.

Mrs. Witowich, Mrs. Currie, Mr. Tranquillo and his chocolate éclairs-…my gosh, I could go on and on. They were all such characters and such fantastic teachers!

After School Activities

After school, we used to walk to Coach Light with whatever change we could scrounge up and buy that many cents worth of penny candy. My apologies to the clerks back then for my pockets full of pennies….and making them count out that many fish!

Strolling down Main Street, Kretchmars was there, looking just about the same these days as it did back then. The only thing missing now are the string dispensers hanging from the ceiling for securing the boxes!

Crossing the street, the 5&10 was on the now-Starbucks corner. Anything and everything you need, you could find there, except fish and records. For those, you would need to stop at Sea n Sound. Not until recently was I able to think about this store and realize how random those two products were to be housed in the same store. Music and fish? Interesting!

Then there was Ranelli’s Pizza and Wedgewood Lanes. Oh, the games we bowled there as kids! It was so long ago, I can only barely remember the setup, but it seems to me that the bowling alley was where Two Rivers Olive Oil is now and then Ranelli’s was two doors down – but they connected. You could walk through Ranelli’s to get to the bowling alley. Between those two was Roland’s Toy Store. I can still remember the musty smell in there!

We had the dances in VBH in elementary school and then Canteen and Center Stage in high school. Not sure why they were called ‘dances’ though – They should have been called ‘Sit across the room from the opposite sex and stare’.

We hung out at McDonalds and Kings in High School for hours and hours. I even have post-prom pictures at Kings of my group of friends all dressed up from the night before! Another huge apology to the workers at both of those restaurants!!

Hopefully this will spur some of your own memories of your younger days, regardless of where those days were spent! If you were in Beaver years ago, please share with me your memories! I would love to read them!

Anastasia Beaverhausen is a married, stay-at-home mom of three kids. She was born, raised and still lives in downtown Beaver. Her main goals in life are making sure everyone lives through the week, the house doesn’t end up condemned, and teaching two (so far) small people how to “people” properly. In her free time, Ana enjoys running, knitting and gardening, although free time is a pretty tough thing to come by these days. Follow her on twiter @bcBeaverhausen!