CUYAHOGA FALLS: The present has been sent to the future in Cuyahoga Falls.
Service Director Valerie Wax Carr hosted a ceremony on Friday to bury a time capsule. Mayor Don Robart was in Tampa, Fla., for the Republican National Convention and was not able to attend.
Ann Durr, president and chief operating officer of Valley Savings Bank, worked with Carr and her staff to collect more than 35 items to place in the cylinder-shaped capsule.
“We had suggestions from the public, city employees and my staff,” Carr said. “We were trying for a mixture of things, not all bicentennial related.”
While the 1962 sesquicentennial “capsule” was actually a small burial vault, the 2012 version promises to be a little more waterproof.
The capsule was designed and built by city engineer Tony Demasi from an 8-inch by 18-inch PVC pipe used for city sewers. Watertight seals closed the ends of the cylinder, which were tightened with stainless-steel bands.
Demasi took the capsule home to test it for leaks by immersing it in the family’s swimming pool, where it stayed on the bottom for three days.
An Aug. 31 edition of the Akron Beacon Journal was the first thing to go into the capsule. The last was an incandescent light bulb.
There were letters from Robart and his Cabinet, pictures of City Council, a flash drive containing information about the city’s technology and dispatch departments, and mementos from the 2012 bicentennial.
There also were everyday items that will give future residents a peek at life in 2012. An iPod Nano, a Best Buy advertisement and menus from Retro Dog and Rocco’s Pizza also were buried.
Carr’s sons, Seth, 11, and Gavin, 10, donated a Lego figure and miniatures. Rhianna English, 11, daughter of Robart’s assistant, Becky English, made a duct-tape wallet that holds a 2012 penny and a dollar bill.
And the Cuyahoga Falls Chamber of Commerce added a letter, mementos and a one-year membership gift certificate, to begin when the capsule is unearthed in 2062.
Watching from the audience was Durr’s mother, Kathryn Hunter, who was instrumental in the creation and burial of the 1962 time capsule. She joined Robart to open it on Aug. 7 during the city’s two-week bicentennial celebration.
“I’m glad they put things in from the children,” Hunter said. “Those are the people who will come back to see it opened.”
When it was time to put the capsule into a clay pipe buried at the base of the Cuyahoga Falls and Silver Lake Police Memorial, Carr invited 4-year-old Owen Belby, who wore a bicentennial T-shirt, to do the honors, with some help from Becky English.
But first, Carr had an important question for him.
“Are you going to come back in 50 years?” she asked.
He hesitated before answering: “Yes.”