Back in December of 1956 I was 9 years old and one early one day in December, my Sister came home from the store and woke me up and said, Mike the Cop was outside with the other kids and he was taking them all to the movie theater for a Christmas show with Christmas movies, and a chance to win prizes!
I got dressed fast as I could and ran outside and Mike was about 2 houses away with the kids they were a little older than me and they didn’t want me to go with them to the show.
But Mike said, no! he’s allowed to come with us and so I went, we walked up to the theater about 25 blocks from my house, we always walked around then so it never bothered us. The show was fun to say the least.
We saw 2 movies then the theater manager would come out on stage and we would sing holiday music as I remember, then he would hold a raffle for the prizes and whomever had the winning ticket got to take home a great prize most of the time it was a new bike! Once my Cousin won a bike at one of the shows and rode it all the way home with a big smile on his face!
in the 1950s, I lived right across the street from from the Church Saint Michae’s It was was built on 12 acres of land and went 2 blocks lwest to east some, and 3 blocks north to south! It was the biggest Chruch in the country at the time and many attented mass there on Sundays and many were married there over the years and my oldest sister was married there also in 1958, it was built in 1869 and completed in 1875.
I moved there when I was 4 years old and still remember when they first put down tar for cars to park in one section, and the other section was dirt with trees and it was fenced in the entire length, so as I got older that’s where the kids in the neighborhood would gather to play, and we would play stickball down where the cars parked after Sunday services. It also had basketball hoops on each side of the parking area.
On the other end is where we would play baseball, the city would add a back stop later on but the bases we made with any decent size rock we could find for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd base, but we did have a home plate the city also added. Many times you could spend most of the day there, only to go home for diner then back again to play a game.
And I remember summer days shooting off those toy water rockets that had a launcher and when you pumped it up it took off straight up and we could have sworn it was headed into orbit! And of course, that’s where the city would dump those wonderful mountains of snow! from around the city and seemed to last a year in the cold winter!
I’m not kidding it took forever for them to melt and they were large and seemed to go on forever and the truth is, we didn’t mind if they did! Oh but what fun we had making snow forts and making up sides to have snowball fights! The Church is still standing there but no longer active with membership it was upgraded for the area highschools for sports and looks nice and on the south end part about 3 blocks away from there are condominiums built on the land a number of years ago very nice looking.
So very once in awhile when I’m in the area I say in a quiet whisper “Hello to Saint Michae’s Church” Thanks for the memories!
I remember back in the 50’s we would gather up all the tree in the neighborhood and place them in a small garage on the block we lived and save them for year years eve! Then someone would lite them up and we just watched them go up! they were in a safe place across the street in the monastery grounds from us away from any buildings or people.
We watched till we heard the fire dept coming then ran away We did it a number of years in a row then it ended. Not something I would consider today but it was a different time..
Back in the 50’s about 1958 we had a good snowstorm and we use to go around asking people if they needed their sidewalk shoveled and make a little money that used to go far for a kid in those days!
Alot of candy was two for a penny and soda was about 7 cents you know what I mean! I remember a few of us shoveling the corner store and each of us got a whole dollar! And the owners wife gave us a bowl of tomato soup and hot chocolate and we were off to find more work..
I remember back in the 50’s whenever we had a good snowstorm the city would gather up the snow in dump trucks and make mountains of it in the monastery grounds right across the street from my home!
And all the kids would come and we’ll play king of the mountain and make snow forts and make up sides and fling those snowballs!
We would play all day take breaks for lunch and dinner and played till it started getting dark and went home thinking of the fun we had and couldn’t wait for the next day of playing king of the mountain!