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Kids open time capsule

by Christina Nelson

C.C. Meneley Elementary School students and teachers did the time warp Monday when they opened a time capsule created by the first students to attend the school.

The students left instructions for the time capsule to be opened in the year 2000, hoping this generation of students would be able to see the changes that have taken place in the last 20 years. Today’s students did the same, adding items they feel reflect their lives and culture.

“These are some casual shoes from the 70s, which I don’t think we would wear today,” said Haley Brummer, 11, a member of the student council and one of the presenters at the time capsule assembly.

Among other contents stored in a “Snow-Foe” de-icing salt container were postcards, a telephone, textbooks, a map of the Middle East, baseball cards, a Sears catalog, a poster of slang terms popular in 1980, a penny, a 1981 copy of The Record-Courier, and a Time magazine.

In the age of cellular phones, video games and DVD players, it was inevitable that some things would seem strange to today’s elementary school students.

Even the toothbrushes were different, one student pointed out.

“I think this one is a lot larger than the one we use today,” said Madison Vanderbyl, 9.

Pictures of the Carson Valley show how much the area has grown in the past two decades while other items in the time capsule revealed that many things remain the same.

One of the textbooks, “Concepts in Science,” which was published in 1966, is still used by teachers at C.C. Meneley. One teacher, who was in a picture of C.C. Meneley’s first educators, Dave McNulty, still teaches 4th grade at the school.

McNulty said he doesn’t remember the creation of the time capsule in 1980, and this year his class didn’t add anything to the new one.

“We didn’t put anything in here. [My students] wanted to put Pokemon, but there were already three classes putting in Pokemon cards,” McNulty said.

Some of the items placed in the new time capsule are surprisingly similar to things popular in 1980.

One current class put pictures of their favorite cartoons, the Rugrats and Scooby Doo, a cartoon older than the first time capsule. The students 20 years ago would also probably be familiar with the “Star Wars” figurine placed in the new capsule.

All classes were invited to participate in the time capsule project, which was organized by the student council.

A couple of classes made video tapes and one made an audio tape. A tape player and a VCR were donated by members of the faculty, as well as a cellular phone.

One class illustrated their favorite books, while another contributed a copy of the first book in the Harry Potter series.

Other items included in the time capsule were butterfly hair clips, pictures of students in class, wrappers of favorite snack foods, an N’Sync CD, dolls from “Toy Story 2,” a pair of jeans, a square of carpet, the R-C millennium issue and descriptions of issues important to students today.

The opening of the time capsule is the first of a series of events the school has planned to celebrate its anniversary.

“We want to observe this over the next five years and culminate it with a silver anniversary,” said principal Brian Frazier.

The time capsule items from 1980 will be on display in the school’s trophy cases for the next couple of months, then repacked and saved for the next time capsule opening in 2020.

There were no students from 1980 present at the assembly, but Frazier said the school plans to contact former students when the next capsule is opened.