Monday, November 13, 2006

3162 Monday Memories

Did I ever tell you about John and Wilma?

We went to their 50th anniversary party yesterday and had an old time, 1950s blast. Their three children hosted it at the Nutcracker Restaurant in Pataskala, OH which is completely decorated in 1950s decor, without being hokey--and in beautiful condition. The invitations had arrived with a 50s rock 'n roll theme, and guests were urged to wear 50s clothing (we didn't--I still have a 1955 formal that requires a 23" waist--but some of the outfits were hilarious).

Usually the restaurant closes at 2 p.m. on Sunday, but someone knew the owner who agreed to stay open for the party and have his experienced staff serve all the dinners. We all enjoyed huge combos of either chili-cheese hotdogs and/or cheeseburgers with sides of coleslaw, onion rings and french fries, served with root beer floats or any other soft drink we wanted. A gorgeous cake was served from the authentic fountain area that had a yummy raspberry filling. A disc jockey played 50s music all evening plus some popular Christian music--Gaithers if I'm not mistaken.

Their children had prepared a nice video of photographs of their parents' family life and career, including all the grandchildren. A photographer was roaming taking shots that will later be put on a web site. They also supplied trivia at each table on cards with John and Wilma's wedding photo and gave out prizes to the winners--Elvis records (not cds). Most of us could shout out the answers to "What was Mohammed Ali's real name?" and "Who did President Eisenhower defeat to win re-election?"

John and Wilma met when she was in high school and he was in college. She had just moved to Lynchburg, OH and he was home for a visit with some other guys when she caught his eye. They were interviewed by their two oldest grandchildren (in their 20s) with questions submitted by the guests and told some funny stories about their long courtship and early married life, when he was a high school coach and she was working. One thing a little unusual for a 50th is that their mothers are still living, and Wilma's was at the celebration--not looking a day over 80. John's mother is in a nursing home, but even after raising 12 children is alert and sharp, he said.

We met John in the early 1980s when my husband was a partner in Feinknopf, Macioce, Schappa, Architects and had gone down to Hillsboro, OH to supervise a school construction project. He was so impressed with the superintendent, John, that he just raved about him. I went with him on one trip (beautiful country down there), and was also charmed, not just with John, but the lovely community tucked away in the hills with a thriving economy. One thing that impressed my husband was that John knew every child in each building by name! And last night he did the same, by going around the room and introducing each guest by name and telling how they knew them and met. One guy, probably in his 60s, was a member of one of the high school teams John coached--another had been an older mentor, also a coach, others members of Bible study groups going back 20 or 30 years.

About six years ago, John and Wilma bought a summer place at Lakeside, OH where we have a cottage. They purchased a trailer in the campgrounds and just love it there. Although not at all interested when Bob told them years ago about Lakeside, they had apparently visited one week-end and fell in love with it. So we've been able to continue seeing them off and on in their retirement. A few years ago, they bought a condo in central Ohio so they could be closer to the grandchildren, since all their children settled in the Columbus area. But not too close--they are enjoying their retirement, and have many friends and activities.

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My visitors and those I'll visit this week are:
Ma, Viamarie, Mrs. Lifecruiser, Debbie, Lazy Daisy, Lady Bug, Janene, Janene in Ohio, Michelle, Anna, ChelleY. Jen, Melli Becki, Paul, Friday's Child, Irish Church Lady,Cozy Reader


Melli said...

Oh what an awesome "recent" memory - filled with old memories! Sounds like that party was quite an event! I'm glad it was being well documented for future "memories"!

Lazy Daisy said...

Wow, what a great idea. I totally loved it. Bet it was fun. I'll have to save that idea for some friends of mine that are having a 50th soon.

Anonymous said...

What a great story and beautiful memory. Sounds like the kinda party I would love!
Thanks for sharing. And thanks for stopping by.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a wonderful party with lots of yummy food! Thanks for sharing. I enjoyed reading about it:D

Anonymous said...

I always love having these kind of "theme" party's and it's especially fun when it's old times. Sounds like they're a terrific couple.

Since Debbie is no longer hosting Monday Memories - and no one volunteered to take over the work with the blogroll, I've decided to quit doing them too. It was too few that participated every week.

Her post about the ending

I'll pop by your blog anyway :-)

Anonymous said...

Wow ~ sounds like a blast. I love theme parties. I wanted to do one for my upcoming 30th birthday...using the Tim McGraw song "My Next 30 Years". However, my 30th birthday falls on Good Friday and I can't see celebrating then...and with the whole Easter weekend thing it would have to be the following weekend...I guess I'll either pass on it or do it late!

Great memory, though. Glad you had fun! Thanks for stopping by!

Anonymous said...

pleased you had a good time
sounds like my sort of party :)