Improvement group items

sharonbaumbaugh

By SHARON BAUMBAUGH

The UPTON School Improvement Club was planning for an elaborate fair and carnival to be held on the Upton School grounds in 1909.    The festivities were being planned for Saturday afternoons and evenings of July 24 and 31.   This fund-raiser would continue for many years.   In 1912, the proceeds were $109.75.

The Club, which had done so much to improve the surroundings of the handsome Upton School, would present a play the following year, 'The Country Squire'.   To be given in the school building, it could be seen on a Saturday evening.   Proceeds would benefit the improvement fund.

By 1914, the civic organization that had been in existence for a few years had raised and expanded, improved the school grounds and had installed oil street lights which were to be maintained by the club.   It was expected that the festivals of this year, to be held in August, would yield enough that $300 of the total could be spent in other areas of improvements to the community.

The grammar school in Upton would hold a spelling bee in February 1915.   Howard S. Meyers was the teacher in charge and the public was cordially invited to attend.

The festival held in 1927 proved to be very successful.   The entire proceeds of the events were to be used to maintain the street lights.   Music for the festival was furnished by the Shippensburg Band.

Through the efforts of the Upton School Improvement Association in 1931, the village was to have a centrally located fire cistern.   It would be here that pumpers could lift water in fighting fires.   This was the year it was announced that the festivals would be held three times.   Two years later, funds would be used to lay sidewalks.   The walks were to be of stone chips, with a heavy coat of oil.

In 1938 new lamps would be installed; a bracket type would take the place of the old style.   The new lights would be more powerful and would be upright, instead of hanging over the roadway, attached to the light poles.   In addition to providing more illumination, the lights would be easier to service.

On the eve of the group's 40th anniversary in 1949, the Association was awaiting incorporation by the county court.   The group had purchased a tract of between 8 and 10 acres for use as a playground.   The land acquired laid to the rear of the Fred Stickell general store and was bought from Mr. Stickell.  In 1952, they would purchase an additional 1? acre from Mr. Stickell.   The addition adjoined the playground and would be used to enlarge the children's area.   In 1953, the Club was looking forward to an enlarged schedule of spring and summer activities on its playground and baseball field.   In 1955 the membership decided to erect a community building at the edge of the playground, lying north of Route 16 and along the road leading to Kuhn's Bridge in the central part of the village.   The new building, 35'x60', was a one-story structure of concrete block, costing approximately $10,000.

The KAUFFMAN Improvement Association announced two festivals to be held in the village in 1925.   Proceeds would be used for street lights.

It was announced that the festivals of 1929 would include delicious refreshments, band concerts and other attractions.   The proceeds would be used for street lighting.   The following year, when the festivals were held on Thursdays, the proceeds would benefit the Rescue Hose Company to help in the purchase of a community pumper to be used in the rural areas of Antrim Township.

The grounds committee of the Brown's Mill Consolidated School and the Kauffman Improvement Association held a joint meeting in that village in March 1932.   It was decided to resume their program of improving the school grounds.

In 1940 there would be three festivals with radio entertainment that would include Curley and his Ranch Boys and Gene and his Saddle Pals from Station WJEJ.   In addition, the Yellow Spring   German Band from station WFMD would entertain.    The next year there would be four festivals, with the fourth to benefit the Milton Wright Home.

Approval was given by Antrim Township Supervisors to the plans for the new Kauffman Community Center Inc., to be completed in the near future.   The new organization was formed in the spring of 1966 with Samuel Horst as president; Chester Talhelm as vice president; Robert Thomas and Richard Myers   as treasurer and secretary, respectively.   The group purchased the former George Kipe property located along the Kauffman-Marion road.   The land includes a large wooded area for a picnic site; little league ball field was planned; and a community building would be erected adjacent to the wooded area.

(There will be more on this village and other sections of our area, including a future piece on   Ruritan clubs.)

Thanks to efforts of the STATE LINE Improvement Association, an organization of its citizens, the nearby village would, on a Friday evening in May 1930, inaugurate a street lighting system.   The new system included 13, 100 candlepower lights, hung about 300 feet apart.   Power was obtained from the Potomac-Edison Plant at a cost of $26 per light, per year.   The money was raised partly by subscription and partly through a series of festivals.   The following year would also include a chicken and waffle supper fund-raiser.   The next year it was a beef and oyster supper held in the C.C. Statler garage.

The Association would hold festivals on Wednesday evenings in July 1940.   Radio entertainment for the events would include Curley and his Ranch Boys and Gene and his Saddle Pals from WJEJ and the Yellow Spring German Band from WFMD.

In 1957, a committee would be formed to study the street light situation.  Members were Chairman Richard Hartle, Aubrey McCoy and George Sellers.

George Nowell, Clinton Koons and Earl Leckron, all of the Improvement Association, would hear from the Township Supervisors that roads in their village would be macadamized in the summer of 1961.  Several streets in the eastern end of the community and the State Line square, plus a street running to the Mason Dixon Road, would be completed.

By 1983, members of the community were urged to attend a special meeting of the Association.   The topic would be the possibility of the street lights being turned off.   Attend, they did, as 60 people came.   The people agreed to conduct a door-to-door campaign to keep the street lights lit in the village.

The SHADY GROVE Improvement Association would hold a festival in 1931 to raise money for community purposes. In 1940, they would realize a profit of $76 from the supper held by the members in the Shady Grove band room.  In 1951, a constitution and by-laws were adopted by the group.   That same   year, the Shady Grove Improvement Association and Baseball Club announced a series of three festivals.

The summer 1952 festivals would include entertainment by the Waynesboro Band July 29; the Harmony Sisters Radio Show July 26; and the Gene Hockenberry and High Knights of the Road Aug. 2.

The Association would erect a Christmas tree in the town and completed the decorating in December 1954.   The tree was donated by Mrs. James Smith, a resident of Shady Grove.

The Association would provide $1,200 of modern playground equipment for the new eight-room grade school in Shady Grove.   The school, built in 1955 as part of the Antrim Township School District, would see the students put the playground area to good use.

In 1960, the Association purchased 5 1/2 acres from the heirs of   Franklin Grove.   The grounds were graded, a baseball diamond laid out, and a parking area provided.   A community building on the site was in the plans for the future.   Soon, they would get an assurance from the Shady Grove Ruritan Club in providing the funds for restrooms at the new Shady Grove Community Park and Playground.

The next year the Improvement Association, the Ruritan Club and the Shady Grove Women's Club would join forces in an effort to construct a community building.   It was expected to cost approximately $15,000.   In March 1963, the new building, at a cost of $17,000, was completed and ready for activities.

The same three Shady Grove groups would combine their efforts to erect a monument to the veterans of the Shady Grove community.   The dedication of the bronze plaque was held Nov. 11, 1966.