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Movie showcases Bickleton's 'living history'

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Bickleton area residents watch a movie students made about the changes in Bickleton over the years.

BICKLETON - According to Bickleton High School ASB President Corryn Raschko, the officers of the ASB wanted to do a project that would involve the community.

"We decided to make a movie focusing on how the town of Bickleton and the school has changed over the years," Raschko said.

The movie they made interviews Bickleton area residents aged 75 years and older. The students did almost all of the work. They formatted the questions, did the interviews, edited the tape and compiled everything into a movie.

The movie was shown Tuesday afternoon at the Bickleton Presbyterian Church to a packed house.

The ASB officers wanted to know how students back in the 1930s got to school. There wasn't any bus service back then. "We rode saddle horses," long time Bickleton resident Keith Jensen said.

Dorothy Naught remembers that girls didn't wear pants to school. She talked about two girls who rode horses to school in pants but once they arrived would change into their dresses.

Another question posed was what they had for lunch. Tom Juris said when he was in school World War II was going on so they ate a lot of surplus food. "We would have split pea soup or chili," he said. "Sometimes we would get cheese."

Lots of the people interviewed remembered the dances held every weekend at some place or the other. Since most people lived outside of town, when the parents brought their children to the dance, they would usually attend too. Sometimes this might have put a damper on the plans of the students attending the dance.

Don Naught said he remembered school started at 9 a.m. and lasted until 3:30 p.m. with a half hour lunch. His wife Dorothy said they didn't always get out at 3:30 p.m.

"There wasn't any glass covering the hands on the clock in school," she remembered. "The boys were always going and moving the hands up. One time we got out of school two hours early."

Sports offered back then were basketball and track. Baseball was played but only on a intramural basis. Bickleton didn't compete with any other schools in baseball.

The town has changed since the 1930s. Audrey Everett remembers there wasn't any restaurants. There was a pool hall and a blacksmith shop but not any restaurants.

Dick Wilson remembers a lot more activity back in the day. He would go to school and then go and help out his dad at the family store. "We would send out meat to customers with the mail," he remembered.

Bob Juris said the town has gotten smaller. He remembers lots of fires that have taken most of the original buildings.

A trip to the valley was not taken lightly back in those days. Delmar Allbritton said his family traveled to the valley once a year. A fact that surprised the young interviewer asking the question.

Allbritton said his father would drive a four-horse wagon and his mom would drive a two-horse buggy. They would camp just a little ways north of Mabton. Then they would use the horses and spend a couple of days going around the valley picking up supplies.

"We would get sugar, vegetables and other goods," he said.

After the showing of yesterday's movie everybody settled in for some refreshments and talked about the movie.

"I thought they did a pretty good job," Bob Muir said. His sentiments were echoed by others.

Raschko enjoyed the learning experience.

"It was a great experience for all the students," she said. "We learned some new technology working on the movie and I got to know the community a lot better."

The ASB plans on selling the movie as a DVD or video tape. The money will go into the ASB fund to help support future projects.

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