Once upon a time, in those school days right before summer, when Knollwood School kids gathered on Sportsman’s Field for, well, some Field Day fun, let’s just say it was a bit hard to keep them focused.
In keeping with the celebration of eighth grade graduation fashion, let’s take a look at the boys’ style.
You’d have to admit that fad dress-up attire has been kinder to the male gender over the years — except for the leisure suit. That was an unforgiving polyester fashion fail.
The following, originally posted on May 30, 2016, is our annual ode to the longtime tradition of Fair Haven sixth graders camping and learning at Stokes State Forrest. Take a trip back with us again. Remember?
It’s that time of the year when Fair Haven schools tradition takes hold and all good Knollwood sixth graders go on their trip to Stokes State Forrest. The buses rolled back into town at about 3:30 today. Last year marked the 50th anniversary of the most wonderful time of the year for those sixth graders. Wow.
Why did the retired Knollwood School teacher cross the frozen river?
To teach her grandchildren to walk on water Rumson-Fair Haven area way? To get to the other side? Or, perhaps, to just celebrate a time-honored area tradition? Maybe a bit of all three.
Former Phys Ed and Health teacher Eileen Kubaitis, nonetheless, geared up, grandchildren in tow, and took the trek across the Navesink the other day when the water was frozen. How could one resist? When the weather is pretty frightful, but there’s such a simple adventure in the offing, the only thing to do is get walking — on water, or ice, as it were.
A lot of people in the area look forward to doing this when the water freezes, giving them a walking path across the river to the Middletown side.
Kubaitis and company were no exception. They were among quite a few others recently. Though, the retired Knollwood teacher tells us that they didn’t actually reach the other side, but came close. “We stopped about 20 feet away because at that point no one was in front of us,” she said.
Hey, they had fun and did their R-FH area civic duty to do their best to get to the other side!
Don’t try this at home, kids … at least until the ice freezes up again.
The big thaw has begun …
According to the National Weather Service, temperatures will reach a high of 40 degrees today with a low of about 26 tonight. Tomorrow, weather will be about the same with mostly sunny skies and a high of roughly 39 degrees.
It’s not every day that a bunch of longtime Fair Haven Knollwood School teachers from the 1970s era get together. It’s one day — for the first time in decades.
Students were back to school in the Rumson-Fair Haven area this week. Those classic first day of school shots were plastered all over Facebook.
And 50 years ago, or 51, to be exact, in September of 1966, while 91,000 students and 4,700 teachers headed back to public school classrooms in Monmouth County (13,014 to parochial), according to a Red Bank Register story of Sept. 6, 1966, the anticipation of the photo taken with that Brownie camera mounted as that picture of the day developed — taking weeks at times.
And those photos were classics … Mom-styled hair gone awry, buck-toothed and missing tooth grins, shiny Mary Jane shoes, Buster Brown penny loafers and, well, cheesy fashion in which to pose and say, “Cheese!”
At Knollwood School in 1966, half a century ago, there was a first-grade class, headed by Mrs. Ginny Kamin (deceased Red Bank Register editor Art Kamin’s wife) and filled with some area kids who ended up becoming entrenched in the community. One of those kids was me.
Some are no longer with us. Others have moved away, but keep in touch. Others, still, have stuck around and raised their children here, too. One common thread is that none of them have forgotten their hometown and likely that walk to the first day of school so many decades ago.
For me, the memory of the badly side-combed bangs kinda sticks like the Dippity-doo that was in them. Sorry, Mom. So do those little faces that seemed to loom like the Man in the Moon back in that slightly nerve-wracked elementary school daze. And it seems like yesterday. Yes, that’s scary. It’s especially scary since it wasn’t, in fact, yesterday.
Back in those days, we walked to school with a buddy. For me, those buddies were my best friend and neighbor Pam Young and Jeff Lang. Pam and I met up with Jeff at the corner and the three of us walked the rest of the way together. Yes, Jeff occasionally would carry my books. I remember that vividly. He is gone now, but that memory is a vivid and enduring one. So is the memory of Mrs. Lang waving to us from the front porch and reminding him to do just that.
The first day of school photos were taken on the front porch, in the front yard or on the sidewalk before the first stroll back then. There was that wait for the film development. Remember that? Then there was the wait for the annual class photo, like the one above, when the picture people grabbed a comb from a tub and gave all the kids a really bad comb through before that elementary school grimace moment. Not a good hair day for most of us little kids subject to Mom’s fashion whims.
It’s all a walk down a Fair Haven memory lane with a stumble or two for good measure.
What’s your first day memory? Stumble? Who did you walk with?
— Elaine Van Develde
Well, the rain didn’t hold out for Fair Haven’s Knollwood School Class of 2017, but, by the looks of things, it didn’t dampen the graduates’ spirits Monday night.
The graduation is and always has been indoors. But, a gaggle of guys and girls from the class gathered after the ceremony for a traditional photo down at Fair Haven Dock and a few others at the ol’ homesteads of grads, captured by mom Jenny Costello.
She said it was raining on the dock, but the grads persevered all in the name of that classic milestone snapshot … and a few more.
Take a look … and if you have any photos you’d like us to add to our gallery, please send them to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Congrats to the Knollwood Class of 2017!
A “tale as old as time” came to Fair Haven’s Knollwood School’s stage when 40 young middle school students performed a production of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast Jr. a few weeks ago.
Knollwood School students recently got a lesson in leadership, courtesy of a U.S. Air Force vet and former teacher.
Recent talk about kids moving on up to full-day school and into middle school from elementary prompted a look back to what Rumson-Fair Haven Retrospect thought was the first kindergarten class in Fair Haven at Knollwood School.
It turns out that we were wrong. Many people responded saying that they had attended kindergarten at Knollwood and what was Willow Street School in those earlier years.
We’re not sure if it was that things got switched around a lot back in the late 1950s and into the mid- to late-60s or if, perhaps, it was the morning classes that attended Knollwood and Willow Street or the kids were just split among classes due to that Baby Boom, but we do know that there was a rope and kids were walked to kindergarten at the Youth Center in the borough in 1965-66.
So, the Retro Pic of the Day is a look back at that afternoon kindergarten class to which yours truly, your editor, was toted daily at the tender young age of 5. Yikes.
There are a few familiar faces in this photo. Some are still in the area. One is a popular funeral director. Another just recently wrote a book and has a younger brother who is a popular landscaper/photographer.
Oh, and the teachers were Mrs. Oliverson and Mrs. Wikoff (sp?).
— Elaine Van Develde