Wednesday, November 23, 2016



    Thanksgiving Day is filled with traditions.
  Many of them, of course, are centered around
the menu for the day. And stuffed Turkey tops
that list. (I'm not totally sure why you have to
stuff them.....the one we got wasn't empty!)
   But one Turkey Day tradition is pretty much
   "Back in the day" local High Schools used to
meet on the Gridiron for a sort of "king of the hill"
Football game!
    In my case the rivalry was between Hazleton,
my home town, and West Hazleton.
    Most everybody went to those games.
    In 1957 5,500 fans showed up in a steady rain
at Harman Geist Stadium for the big Thanksgiving
Day game!
    I was there too......right on the field.....sort of.
    As I've written before, I was a "Manager" for
the team.
    Now  before you get me confused with the likes
of Joe Maddon, the term "manager" in my sense
meant that I and my fellow managers hauled and
packed the uniforms , carried the water buckets, and
quite often, hoisted the stretcher as we carried
injured players off the field. Often through the mud!
    Though it was only my sophomore year I "retired"
from that prestigious position and joined the Stage
crew the next year. Everything we did there was
inside and dry!
     Still, in many ways, I miss those Thanksgiving
Day games!
     Hazleton did very well during my High School
days. We beat West Hazleton in 57, 58, and 1959!
     But the game isn't the only thing that's disappeared!
     My Blue & White "Mountaineers" have become the
Red, Silver, and White "Cougars" as part of a merger that
united Hazleton and West Hazleton High Schools! Guess
it's a lot more colorful now. Even our photos were in
black and white!
     You probably had a similar Thanksgiving day High
School Football rivalries in your now. Most are gone
now. But there are a few that have preserved the
     And I say good for them!
     I, on the other hand, will continue my own rivalry
as I take on the turkey!
     It hasn't got a chance even with its wishbone
formation! I'll just do an end run around the table!
     Hope you're enjoying your own traditions, are
enjoying a happy Thanksgiving and that all you NEWS
is good!    


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