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The Good Old Days

The Way I See it

July 2, 2017
By John Sheda , Toledo Chronicle, Tama News-Herald

My home town of Chelsea was a great little town to grow up in--as was Tama, Toledo, Montour, Haven, Vining, Clutier, Elberon, and all the rest. High School sports were the highlight of the town. We were called the Chelsea Redhawks. The boys and girls each had only two sports, if I remember correctly, (I was only 12 when the Chelsea High School closed its' doors), baseball and basketball for the boys and softball and basketball for the girls. And the girls played that wonderful game, called "6-Girl" basketball. And basically the whole town showed up for the home games because somehow, someway, everyone was related. Sons, grandsons, daughters, granddaughters, nieces, nephews, cousins, the paper-boy, your baby-sitter, the boy who mowed your lawn--we were all one! We all loved the regular season games and then came the Sectionals, the Districts, Sub-State and finally the State Tournament.

Does anyone remember a young lady by the name of Denise Long, from Union-Whitten? Didn't she score over a hundred points several times in a game and had an average in the sixties. That was 6 on 6 girls basketball at its' best.

I remember Doris Hilligas as one of the stars for the Chelsea RedHawks. I might be a tad prejudiced here, but my brothers, Tone and Larry were pretty good athletes way back when!!!!

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John Sheda

We had band concerts in the summer, skating parties in the winter, sleep overs, camp-outs, tree houses, town carnivals, baseball cards in the spokes of our bikes to make them sound like motor bikes and various games that lasted all day. We even played tag, hide-n-seek and ghost-n-goblins well past dusk--AND OUR PARENTS WEREN'T WORRIED OR AFRAID!!

Anyone remember pea-shooters? Ouch! And what about those bb guns? Come on now.......did any of you guys have BB gun fights? We did and those BBs sure hurt.

Do you remember watching Dick Clark and Bandstand on Saturday mornings? Don't you just miss those days? In fact, don't tell a soul, but I really enjoy watching those half-hour, Time-Life informercials with all those great songs of the past. And if you order within the next ten minutes.....

Speaking of informercials, do you remember the commercials of the 60's? Jiffy pop-corn popping on the stove! Finding glasses and towels in laundry detergent!

How about "butch wax?" We all had those sexy flat-tops. How about, "Take it off, take it off, take it all off?" "A lil' dab'll do ya." "Taste's good like a cigarette should." "You can take the ______ out of the country, but you can't take the country out of _____.? And of course, who could ever forget, Mr. Whipple? "Please don't squeeze the Charmin."

By the way, did you ever really "wish you were an Oscar Meyer wiener?" Nah, me either!

And finally, do you remember doing "the twist?"

Can you imagine trying it now? Yikes, probably end up in the Emergency Room. Wow, getting a little misty-eyed reminiscing about the good ol' days. Loved heading into Tama-Toledo, playing Mini-Golf, driving back and forth through the towns on Saturday nights and going to the A&W for a great root beer. Sometimes even listening to Wolfman Jack on the radio.

Speaking of the radio---it was always KIOA and the top 40 of the week, which included Jan & Dean, the Beatles, Everly Brothers and the Association. Hey, pass the Kleenex!

If you get a minute, let me know how you spent your childhood. Email me at or call me at 319-327-4640. Love to hear from ya.

Have a great week.



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