If you read yesterday’s post, then you’ll know that I went to Ohio for a quick visit.
Aside from doing my usual yarn crawl, I also ventured to the Downtown area.
It was a blast from the past to drive by the old Higbee Company. It’s a casino now, of all things, but back in the day it was one of the most prominent department stores in the area.
It was also where my Grandmother worked.
You may remember it from “The Christmas Story”. But what I remember best are the little cardboard ovens that the children’s meals were served in while I dined with my wonderful Grandmother. What a thrill it was to get all dressed up in my Sunday best and go with my Grandmother to lunch at the Silver Grill. My mother would take my brother and I to Grams house and from there we took a bus downtown, leaving my mother to run errands elsewhere.
Even the bus was an adventure. I traveled wide eyed beside Gram as we approached the downtown area. Once inside the Higbee building, my brother and I were escorted around the store while our Grandmother beamed with pride as she showed off her grandchildren to her fellow employees. We’d visit the dress shop and the jewelry counter, the shoe department and even the men’s wear. Anywhere Gram could show us off.
Then we stepped into the beautiful wood encased elevator and road to the 10th floor.
The Silver Grill was, to my young eyes, the most posh place I could ever imagine eating. Half of the tables were full of business men and women, talking about stocks and bonds (as I remember it). The other half were shoppers taking a break from a full day of treasure hunting on the floors below.
But then the most important part of the visit – lunch! Every children’s Meal came in it’s own cardboard box. Inside was a mini version of an adult lunch, like a tiny Pot Pie served in a little glass hen. Sure beat today’s Happy Meal! Those meals were magical. I’d give anything (almost) to have one of those ovens now!
I’m pleased to say the Silver Grill has been restored and is now available for special occasions.
Still exploring Downtown Cleveland, my cousin and I drove over to the Playhouse Square and went inside the Cleveland Playhouse.
Talk about fabulous architecture! This old playhouse was built in 1927 and still looks virtually the same today. They just don’t make them like this anymore.
It was fun to travel back to Cleveland and revisit some of my old memories. Made me feel like a kid again!
We even drove by my childhood house in Strongsville while I was there! It would have been fun to go inside, but I was content just to see it. I wonder if the old place looks the same inside… guess I’ll never know.