Restaurant's photos add history to school


November 15, 1999|By Lisa Breslin | Lisa Breslin,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

WHEN EAST Middle School's media specialist Laurie Walters learned that Shoney's on Route 140 would close Sept. 27, the first things she thought about were the framed photos inside.

She remembered admiring old scenes of Endicott Johnson's Shoe Store, Western Maryland College's Little Baker Chapel and a country scene of a bus driver welcoming students onto his wooden bus.

"I thought that it was such a good idea to bring these historic photos, this part of our community, into a restaurant," said Walters. "Later, when I learned that the restaurant was closing, I knew we had a good home for those photos if they had nowhere else to go."

Last week, Craig Miller, Shoney's regional director, traveled from West Virginia to deliver nine double-matted and framed historical photographs to their new home -- East Middle School's library.

Students will get a glimpse of life in Carroll County from the 1920s to the 1960s, and Walters hopes they will be inspired to learn more.

"These pictures will get a lot of attention here. They are so wonderful, and I'm so excited that Shoney's said we could have them," Walters said.

"We were thrilled to hear from Laurie because we were in the process of deciding what to do with everything," said Sandy McCaffrey, director of corporate communications for Shoney's Inc. in Nashville, Tenn. "She may have given us a good idea for other locations. This is a nice situation all around."

The prints were created by the Historical Society of Carroll County, which has offered the same service to many other local businesses such as Ruby Tuesday's, Carroll Lutheran Village, Jubilee Foods in Taneytown and Twin Kiss in Westminster.

"We have about one request a week for prints," said Jay Graybeal, historical society director. "It's an ongoing service we offer."

Reading, writing, escaping

This Thursday, Carroll County parents and children will have the opportunity to learn about child abduction and ways to get out of dangerous situations.

Paul Kin, a representative from the Service Corporation International's Escape School program, will be at Friendship Valley Elementary School to show children how to recognize strangers who might intend to harm them and what to do if they are kidnapped.

The goal, according to organizers, is to show the community the importance of being smart instead of being scared.

"What I like about this program is its positive approach," said Westminster resident Karen Loats, who introduced Escape School to Friendship Valley Elementary School's PTO. "It lets children know that the world is basically safe, but there are times when it is not, and there are ways to help yourself in dangerous situations."

The program is free, and it is targeted for children ages 5 to 15 years old and their parents. Escape School also offers a videotape, two books, a quarterly newsletter, a Web site and tip sheets.

"Our children are safest when they are prepared, not scared," said Loats.

"When my son, Cameron, watched the `Escape School' video, he felt a sense of empowerment. Like any other educational program, this one just gives our children something they need as they grow up."

Information: 410-848-0725.

Lisa Breslin's Central neighborhood column appears each Monday in the Carroll County edition of The Sun.

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