Nostalgic pastimes still popular with small town residents

Published 11:18 am Monday, June 3, 2024

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On weekday trips to Luverne, I often stop by Dips and Dogs for ice cream and a hot dog. A couple of weeks ago, local teens and children were also there playing board games after school.

The scene took me back to childhood, when my family gathered around the coffee table playing one of the two board games we received every Christmas. One year, it was Rummikub, another it was Sorry.

It’s a sight we don’t see often – youths taking a break from technology to enjoy some good old-fashioned fun with a board game. But the lazy Luverne afternoon was just one of many examples of how small towns hold onto and sometimes revive or rejuvenate those sweet, nostalgic bygone pastimes.

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It does not always look the same. Up Alabama Highway 97, shoppers at the Ace Hardware in Hayneville can be found standing around and talking about community happenings over a bag of lawn fertilizer or down at the Hayneville QV sharing local gossip over a piece of fried chicken.

Butler County residents, while thrifting or antiquing at Tayla and Pearls, often chat about the merits of a vintage Kodak Jiffy Six-20 camera or discuss techniques for making tiny dresses from pillowcases. 

But, while the location and occupation of gathering may change, they still function to bring people together for community and connection. I find it refreshing to know that young people can still compete in a rousing match of Dominoes and older citizens can still exchange gossip or sewing tips at a local store.

I hope this never changes, that small town life will always be a delightful mix of modern technology and ideas juxtaposed with history, nostalgia and good, old-fashioned conversation.