Can you guess which Edina grocery store this is?
Be the first to name the store correctly and you will win a shirt featuring the Edina Mill or the Edina Theater. Winner must collect the prize by coming to the Edina History Museum during regular museum hours (or pay shipping.) Winner will be selected on Monday.
To even the playing field for newcomers, we'll also pick a winner from the list of anyone who guesses, right or wrong. So give it a shot... as Publisher's Clearing House so famously says, "You can't win if you don't enter." Submit your guess by commenting here or on our Facebook page. One entry per person. Winners picked on Tuesday, May 21st.
Happy Friday, everyone! I'm going grocery shopping....
Do you remember Carlson's Odd Shop in Morningside? Or Officer Weber, Joyce's Bakery, the cookie lady and Mrs. Glover? Then you're officially an "Morningside Old-Timer." Mark your calendar for a reunion of friends from the neighborhood: Saturday, June 22 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Weber Field warming house.
I have a feeling that there will be a great turnout for this event. More than 250 people returned for a neighborhood reunion back in 2005 during Morningside's centennial, when the Edina Historical Society held a grand opening of "Morningside: A Century of Good Neighbors" exhibit. The annual picnic for current Morningside residents attracts around 300 people each year.
I may not have grown up in Morningside, but I do know one thing: it's a very tight little community, perhaps because it was a separate village for almost 50 years. Even though the neighborhood rejoined Edina in 1966, there will "always be a Morningside," the local paper editorialized after the election to merge Morningside with Edina.
This reunion will be very informal, according to one of the organizers Jim Joyce, with the main goal of reminiscing and renewing acquaintances.
"A few of us 'Old-timey Morningsiders' got to thinking it would be fun to gather together at one of our favorite Morningside hangouts, Weber Field, to see who's still around and try to recall some of those times from our yesterdays of the 1940s, 1950s, 1960s, 1970s ... and beyond," the reunion press release states."Maybe we talk about things and people such as Hawkins, Carlson Odd Shop, Tastee Treat, Mrs. Glover and Miss Baker, Harold Schwartz, Wayne Courtney, Constable Weber and not to forget 4th of July bike parades at Weber Field, Scout meetings at Morningside Church, movies atWestgate Theater, pot belly stove huddling at the skating rink warming shack and early morning treats at Joyce's bakery. Or just hanging out at Vic's Texaco station, Wimmer's (Wimpy's) bike shop and Lake Harriet's north beach and bandstand."
Organizers will set up tables in the warming house on the north side of Weber Field with -- what else? -- Weber grills. People are encouraged to bring food to share, as well as some photographs of family, neighbors, classmates, the village and village characters.
Maybe some of those characters will even show up in person, Jim says. "We are working on opening up what's left of the old Morningside grade school from noon to 1 p.m., in case you want to see where you spent part of your youth with Mrs. Glover, Miss Baker and our other fine teachers and classmates. We don't think Mrs. Hutchinson, the Morningside principal for many years, will be able to make it, but we may be able to arrange for a visit by one of our other teachers from that era."
To RSVP or assist in spreading the word, setting up tables, re-constructing the Fourth of July bicycle parade or bringing in old photos, please contact the Morning for Old-timey Morningsiders (MOM) Committee:
Tim Layeux, like many other people, regularly haunts garage sales and estate sales for treasures. While most others look to add something to their own collections, Tim keeps an eye out for items for local historical societies.
Tim has brought us books by local authors, old yearbooks, Hornet and Cougar emblazoned clothing, advertising from long-gone local businesses and more. He also is a regular donor to surrounding historical societies.
A lifelong Edina resident, Tim can spot items that have local ties, even if the connection wouldn't be immediately obvious to others.
One of his recent finds: this tweed jacket. While it's in pretty decent shape, we would have no need for it in our collection except for one teeny thing: the label inside and the story that goes with it.
The label shows that the jacket was sold at Belleson's in Edina. Men's clothing doesn't change that much, at least to my female uneducated eye, but everything from the font to the wording on the label made me believe that the jacket was more than a few decades old.
I called Belleson's, which is still going strong at 50th and France, just a few doors down from its original location where Wes Belleson opened the store in 1948. He sold the business to his employees in 1975. Staff confirmed my suspicion that the store had long since quit using Wes' first name on its labels.
My internet search and Belleson's also verified that Griffon Clothes was no longer in business. I did see 1940s and 1950s vintage Griffon label jackets for sale on Ebay -- think "Mad Men" styled suits -- but nothing more recent.
The label's "Edina Minneapolis" (rather than Minnesota) reference is also telling. Before Southdale opened in 1956, many Edina businesses listed their location as Minneapolis, in part because of areas of Edina have Minneapolis zip codes and in part because Edina was not yet well-known. Until 1949, Edina didn't even have a high school to give it a unique identity in the metro area.
In my search for information, I found out that Wes Belleson took part in the D-Day invasion at Normandy.. I knew from our files that Wes opened his store after returning from the war, but I didn't know the details.of his military record that includes more than 30 missions as a tail gunner in in B-24 bomber.
Wes is now 90 years old and living in Florida. He just gave a great interview about his war service, so I hope to chat with him soon about his Edina roots.
I'm not done with my research, but I do know that a suit is just a suit. But a suit with a story -- now that's a garage sale find worth saving.
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Jennifer Adam is the Executive Director of the Edina Historical Society. She welcomes your contributions. Comment on a post or send an email (see below). Traditional mail, of course, can also be sent to:
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