CARMICHAELS – Curiosity mixed with a bit of nostalgia brought more than 100 people Sunday to the underpass of Carmichaels Area High School.
Only a few days prior, the district announced it would remove the cornerstone of the junior high school building as its $25 million renovation project begins. A time capsule, placed into the cornerstone of the underpass that separates the junior and senior high school buildings, was put there by the Class of 1967. It marked the last gathering there as the underpass closed Monday.
When word spread that the capsule would be removed, speculation swirled about its contents. The only clue was a page of black-and-white photographs in the 1967 Carmichaels High School yearbook commemorating the time capsule’s placement. The yearbook offered no indication of contents or the date it was placed in the cornerstone.
As it turned out, there was very little in the time capsule – a 1966 yearbook, a 1967 yearbook and a handful of photographs of construction of the current senior high school building.
“The box may not have contained much, but the voices of our 1967 class were echoing out of it, so it’s not really that empty,” said 1967 Carmichaels Area High School graduate Kathy Yurick Kurincak.
Kurincak was one of the 10 members of the class of 1967 who visited their alma mater Sunday. They, along with dozens of other alumni, current students and curious others were greeted by acting Assistant Superintendent John Menhart and Superintendent Craig Baily. The school band played the alma mater and fight song before all were welcomed into the high school library for the opening of the capsule.
Librarian Cassie Menhart set the mood with music from the 1960s and popular candy treats from the era. Yearbooks from before and after 1967 were on display, as was memorabilia from the district’s history.
There were hugs among old friends. Youngsters chuckled at photos of their parents, grandparents and even teachers.
“It was nice. It was like a mini-reunion,” said 1967 Carmichaels alum John Jacobs of Waynesburg. “It is nice to be together and kind of sad more didn’t show up.”
A moment of silence was observed prior to entering the school for all departed Carmichaels classmates.
The cornerstone and time capsule will be repurposed. A new date is to be etched into the stone and new contents placed inside the capsule. At the appropriate time, it will be returned to the stone and both set into a yet-to-be-determined place in a wall of the area being renovated.
Baily assured the crowd its contents would be a bit more substantial when opened by a future generation of Mikes.