Thursday, June 27, 2013

Cruisin' through the 20's

         As we take a ride in our time traveling machine, you will notice glitzy dresses, a jazzy tune, and the first set of Chrysler cars driving down the road. Yes, we have arrived in the 1920’s. October of 1925 to be exact.  This is when the Junior League of San Antonio took over our “home”- the Bright Shawl. The Bright Shawl was named by our former league members after Joseph Hergerheimer's popular 1920’s book, The Bright Shawl. The Bright Shawl was originally located in Kampmann home on Nacogdoches Street. After a fundraiser with the Magic Theater, the league raised $30,000 to open the current location on Augusta Street. The little house, now home to over 1,200 members, contains masonry from a quarry that once existed in Brackenridge Park (before it was Brackenridge park, of course). Closer to the 1940’s, former league members could be seen busy rushing around waitressing. It is hard to believe they would be serving me as I sit in the 2013 Bright Shawl Tea Room. Look at this fun artifact our communication council chair, Tiffany Nelson found. It is a letter from the president dating back to the 1920's:

Hearts full of charity is a way you could describe the JLSA Reading Camp Volunteers. Serving children around San Antonio, volunteers strive to keep learning fun and motivating.  

When I asked how the Reading Camp program benefits children, Reading Camp, co-chair Emily Countryman, tells me “Reading Camp bridges the summer learning gap. Many students lose up to a half or full school year worth of reading skills over summer because of lack of exposure and books at home. We worked on a variety of skills for two weeks and sent each child home with 6 books for summer reading!” 

This sounds like a fun way to spend the summer doesn’t it? Katey Drexler, reading camp volunteer explains her favorite part was the “relationships you form with the kids!” I can only image the positive influence these volunteers made in these children’s lives.  

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