Richie and Jeff Stark (the first year)

“In the first year we used to walk kids down to the YMCA for PE, located in those days at the northeast corner of Buffalo St. and North Aurora.  One day in November, on the way down it started a flurry.  I can still hear in my inner ear… Jenny Stein… “It’s snowing, It’s snowing, It’s snowing,” and sticking out her tongue to catch the flakes.” – Bill Mutch

Lloyd Benson, Jude Puryear, Jackie Scoones, Jonathan Fischer, Mark Rodgers, Blake Smith

“playing kickball, playing capture the flag, rappelling down the cliff” – Rex Nordheimer

Doggie Pile denouement

“Did ‘Doggie Pile’ have actual rules or was it just fun-running chaos with the risk of road rash or broken bones ??” – Bill Mutch

Blake Smith and others

“The latter…There’s another name I remember for that sport: Kill The Guy With The Ball. Violence is implied. I only watched from the side. To me it appeared to be a professional sport – with the likes of Jeff Stark and Cheryl Hines. Yikes.” – Steve Halton

“DOGGIE PILE !!   there were survivors.” – Bill Mutch

“The students gave us the [geodesic] dome after the [spring] festival for the school. It shows up in a number of photos. We put the dome over a number of teachers’ cars.” – Sid Bardwell

The geodesic dome

“I remember when some kids thought it would be funny to place the geodesic dome jungle gym over Mr. Lee’s VW Bug. Good times!” – Rex Nordheimer

“I will never forget the students putting the playground dome climber over my car….yes that happened…….. very real creative??” – Dan Lee

“It wasn’t me …?” – Blake Smith

“I remember being under the dome but not on it.” – Anonymous

“Little kids would climb up the geodesic dome and try to jump down from the top and get stuck hanging there, and Dan would have to come out because he was so tall and they could drop onto his shoulders. ” – Karen Carr

“Playing Earth ball in the playground” – Anonymous

“Dodge ball in back of the school; I remember not liking it when people threw the ball hard, to hurt.” – Erica Peters

“Piggybacking off of Bill’s post: Who played “Hit the Bat” after school? Has anyone ever encountered that game (or “chick,” for that matter) anywhere else? I actually got some neighborhood kids playing it for a while, but never on the scale we had going on the playground.” – David Nordheimer

“Played it all the time at East Hill. Every day after school…saturdays…etc etc” – Wayne Cooper

“Me, too. This could never happen today.” – David Nordheimer

“The ballfield seemed so huge to a 7 or 8 year old. I remember hitting a lot of ground balls between 2nd and 3rd…only to have it carom off the wall and beat me to first…lol.” – Wayne Cooper

“I remember one kid hit a ball that went straight to the pitcher’s, um, package. Dropped him for an extended time out.” – David Nordheimer

“I remember hitting home runs over the fence into the cliffs and then looking for salamanders.” – Richard Smith

Does anyone know?

“One year, Ken Eustice had over 1000 over the fence, and 43 “Cliffers”. We spent a lot of time looking for the ball!” – Thane Benson

Published by Karen Carr

Dr. Karen Carr is Associate Professor Emerita, Department of History, Portland State University. She holds a doctorate in Classical Art and Archaeology from the University of Michigan. Follow her on Instagram, Pinterest, or Facebook, or buy her book, Vandals to Visigoths.

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