It’s Not the Same – Conshy That Is – And That’s Okay
by Brian Coll
It’s Not the Same……
It’s Not the Same…..
It seems a number of conversations I have start that way when people are talking about Conshohocken. And here’s the thing. It’s not the same, and that’s okay. My doors are always open at the shop. I’m around this borough a lot. I talk to a lot of people about Conshy. We can go down the entire list.
The Fellowship House isn’t the same, it was better when Frank and Floyd were here, it was better when Darlene was here, it was better when Al Donofrio was here. Each generation has the person they remember. You know what, Brady is over there now, with Lauren and they are good people. With the Fellowship House, the kids just aren’t here in the borough the way it was when I was a kid, there aren’t as many kids here to play kickball or box hockey. However, I look at my kids and other parents in the community and when opportunities present themselves at the Fellowship House with events like Easter Egg hunt, there is a nice crowd of young families.
The police department isn’t the same, you remember when Doc was chief, or you remember when Pagliaro ran things, you know back in the day when we had real cops like John Ellam or Paul Price…. well, you know what. We have some damn fine officers here today. I can probably name half the department and tell you what street they grew up on. These are hometown guys who love this borough and are here to protect the people. Once again, when I see these officers in the community, they are great with the kids, they do what police officers should do and while it’s not the same, neither is the way the world around us. Long gone are the days when a cop could pull over a drunken driver and just follow them home, what happens when the same person gets back in the car and hits someone?
The parks aren’t the same, guess what, they aren’t. In recent years many upgrades have been made to the parks and playgrounds. I love seeing the parks through my childrens eyes. I wish we had some of the things these kids have today. Sure, there are things I miss, a giant slide, sure… a thing that can spin so fast you feel like you’re going back in time…. yes. I miss a little more wooded feel around Sutcliffe Park that I had when I was growing up, but they added a tee ball field.
What else has changed? Our age, that is the main thing, if you’re reading this after having grown up in Conshohocken, yeah it’s easy to look around and realize how much things have changed. A lot of it has to do with our age. Everyone reading this had a special time here growing up. I hope my kids, and their friends can look back at some point and think their childhood was pretty special in Conshy.
Corner stores…. hey. I can’t argue there. We lost too many.
Movie houses… once again, no argument from me.
Mom and Pop stores, yup, I wish we had more of these.
Parking, yes. it seems like that is a major problem. While our population hasn’t went up all that much over the years (yes even with more houses and condos) we have more cars on our streets. Parking is an issue for everyone, young and old, long time home owners or renters. I’m not sitting on a soap box here, my thought with parking is try to not park in front of a neighbors house who is older, has a child… leave the prime spots for the people who might need them.
Each generation has things they remember, things that made them love growing up here and you know what, I hope the next few generations feel the same way…. they’ll be telling the generation behind them…. we had the best restaurants here, we had the coolest parks. The Funfest, well, that has been going on for the most part for over 20 years and yes, it has changed. Guess what, my kids love it, they probably love it the way kids did 20 years ago. That’s the great part about being young, you only know what’s in front of you.
So, I guess here’s the thing. It’s not the same, it’s not and that’s okay. The people here now, we get to make the best of what we have. This isn’t about telling anyone to leave if they don’t like it, this isn’t a rally call to change anything. It’s to simply appreciate what we have here today, because what we have right now, it won’t always be here.
Thanks for reading. Hey if you’re still with me…. I had a great conversation with Trish Chabaud Duncan and Dana Petine Jackson and it was part of our Conshohocken Conversations, it was called growing up Conshy. I would like to do a couple more of those articles. If anyone feels they can offer a unique perspective e-mail us at Brian@conshystuff.com