BIRTH­DAY BASH

Ru­pert El­e­men­tary School cel­e­brates 90th anniversary

The Community Connection - - FRONT PAGE - By Mar­ian Den­nis mden­nis@21st-cen­tu­ry­media.com @Mar­i­anDen­nis1 on Twit­ter

POTTSTOWN » It was a birth­day bash to re­mem­ber Sept. 8 as Ru­pert El­e­men­tary cel­e­brated 90 years as a school.

Kids and par­ents could be seen in the park­ing lot of the school en­joy­ing fun, games and treats as the birth­day party kicked off. The event wel­comed stu­dents, teach­ers, area res­i­dents and any­one else with spe­cial mem­o­ries of the school to take part in the cel­e­bra­tion.

While kids were hav­ing a blast en­joy­ing games like bowl­ing, Jenga, Con­nect 4 and the ever pop­u­lar dunk tank, older res­i­dents came for some dif­fer­ent rea­sons. Many for­mer stu­dents and even some teach­ers re­turned to the school to en­joy the mer­ri­ment and check up on their old stomp-

ing grounds.

“I saw they were do­ing this in the pa­per and I wanted to come and I thought about Ru­pert be­cause I started teach­ing here in ‘51 or ‘52,” said Russ Mil­lard, a for­mer 6th grade teacher at the school. “I re­mem­ber it was a good school with great kids. So that’s why I’m here. I also thought maybe I would bump into some­body I taught with.”

Al­though Mil­lard said he hadn’t yet talked to any­one he re­mem­bered from Ru­pert, he added that after com­ing back to visit, he gained an ap­pre­ci­a­tion for the school build­ing it­self.

“I can’t be­lieve how beau­ti­ful it is. It re­ally is beau­ti­ful,” said Mil­lard. “I didn’t ap­pre­ci­ate it while I was there. I didn’t know how beau­ti­ful it was but now I see it. It’s gor­geous.”

And of course, no birth­day would be com­plete with­out a cake. Guests were in­vited inside the school at around noon to take part in singing “Happy Birth­day” and en­joyed a slice of cake that fea­tured a photo of the school.

“This is our 90th school year so we thought this was a great rea­son to cel­e­brate. I started meet­ing with staff who vol­un­teered their time back in the spring to plan an event and make it a big birth­day party,” said Matt Moyer, prin­ci­pal of Ru­pert El­e­men­tary School. “It’s just been a fan­tas­tic event so far. We just fin­ished cut­ting the cake so we have that, a band. It’s just been awe­some.”

Ru­pert El­e­men­tary is named for Wil­liam White­head Ru­pert, Pottstown’s very first su­per­in­ten­dent of schools.

In 1888, when parts of “Potts­grove Town­ship” be­came part of the bor­ough, the pop­u­la­tion jumped to more than 13,000 and the num­ber of stu­dents also jumped from 1,074 to 1,766, ac­cord­ing to a 2009 ar­ti­cle pub­lished in The Mer­cury by lo­cal his­to­rian Michael T. Snyder.

With the sud­den rise in stu­dent pop­u­la­tion, the school board voted unan­i­mously on July 11 of that year to name Ru­pert as the first su­per­in­ten­dent of Pottstown Schools.

On June 12, 1913, on the oc­ca­sion of his 25th year as su­per­in­ten­dent, a spe­cial cer­e­mony was held with tes­ti­mo­ni­als and gifts in­clud­ing a “Russian wal­let purse filled con­tain­ing $100 in gold” and five weeks va­ca­tion, Snyder wrote.

In 1922, Ru­pert reached the manda­tory re­tire­ment age of 70 and he stepped down, but re­turned five years later to kick off con­struc­tion on the school which still bears his name.

Re­porter Evan Brandt con­trib­uted to this ar­ti­cle.

MAR­IAN DEN­NIS — DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

Bowl­ing was one of the most pop­u­lar games at the 90th birth­day cel­e­bra­tion for Ru­pert El­e­men­tary in Pottstown.

MAR­IAN DEN­NIS — DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

Kids played Con­nect Four and many other games dur­ing the cel­e­bra­tion of Ru­pert El­e­men­tary’s 90th birth­day.

MAR­IAN DEN­NIS — DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

There were games ga­lore dur­ing Ru­pert El­e­men­tary’s 90th birth­day cel­e­bra­tion.

MAR­IAN DEN­NIS — DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

Ru­pert El­e­men­tary in Pottstown cel­e­brated its 90th birth­day with a party at the school. The cel­e­bra­tion fea­tured live mu­sic and lots of games and treats.

MAR­IAN DEN­NIS — DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

Kids took a shot at the dunk tank that was set up in the park­ing lot of Ru­pert El­e­men­tary as part of their 90th birth­day cel­e­bra­tion.

MAR­IAN DEN­NIS — DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

Ru­pert El­e­men­tary Prin­ci­pal Matt Moyer cuts into the birth­day cake dur­ing the cel­e­bra­tion of Ru­pert El­e­men­tary’s 90th birth­day on.

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