With mixed emotions, Pine Grove unearths time capsule

May 25, 2011

How do you lasso a time capsule?

Ask Kelly Beard, John Krussow, Ron Guth and Uriel Marquez.

They were key hands in a novel way to unearth a cylinder buried in 1989.

Pine Grove Elementary held its "Final Fiesta" as a K-5 elementary school Friday. The event, attended by about 300 people, was equal parts feast, time warp, reunion and farewell.

The school will be "repurposed" for special education and other services in 2011-12, and current students will be attending Mid Valley.

Beard, the Pine Grove principal, and time capsule designers Guth and Krussow, and a crew spent about 45 minutes working to remove the two-and-a-half-foot cylinder, buried since 1989, but found themselves at a stalemate. The capsule was buried 22 years ago at the 100th anniversary of the founding of Pine Grove School.

About 50 students, alumni and parents stood around the hole throughout the excavation, anxious to see the time capsule freed from the earth. Marquez, performing with lariats, gave the crew an idea.

They wrapped a rope around the cylinder and an iron cross bar, and leveraged the capsule.

The crowd cheered as the capsule was carried to the front of the school, where Beard and 1989 principal Doug Mahurin took turns sawing off the top.

Out came documents, drawings, clothing items, books, and even an empty pack of Marlboros and a 5-inch "floppy disk".

The items will remain on display for a month, and the capsule will be reburied, along with a new time capsule filled by 2011 students and staff.

"I had mixed emotions about opening it, but considering the fate of the school I agreed it was a good idea," said Molly Krussow, a third-grader in 1989 and now the mother of 13-year-old Riley. Mother and daughter read an enclosed item from Molly's mother, the late Patricia Krussow.

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