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Hobby & Recreation Group
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Hobby & Recreation Group
June 25, 2011
Kramer Reunion
The 50th Annual Kramer Reunion was held on Saturday, June 25, 2011 at Reese Park in
Silverdale, PA.  There were 42 people in attendance.

We decided to start things a bit early, and lunch was updated to start at 12:30, instead of 1:00.  In
honor of our 50th Anniversary, we shook things up a bit.  Everyone got colored name tags, since
there were many unfamiliar faces.  Just before lunch it was announced that everyone with the same
colored name tag was going to sit at the same color-coded tables.  That way, everyone got to meet
and talk with someone they didn't always sit with every year!  Once everyone was situated, we ate
a wonderful lunch, followed by yummy desserts!  It was noted that today is Len and Nancy Knapp's
45th Wedding Anniversary.  A cake was provided to help celebrate.  We were honored to have
Mark Kramer join us from England, along with his niece Judy - daughter of his brother Paul
Kramer.  Two of three triplets of Henry Kenneth Kramer, Ken Kramer and Kurt Kramer, and their
wives also were able to join us!

During lunch, our President, Doris Bossert, conducted an informal meeting so that everyone could
get updated on family news.  An announcement was made that Eileen Bengtson had gone ahead
and had commemorative beer glasses made with the Kramer logo and the 50 year dates.  She had
enough for everyone, and requested a donation from anyone who wanted one, just to help cover
some costs.  What a nice idea!  Secretary Bethanne Cassidy also noted that we were going to
have all-day bidding on the silent auction items, with final bidding ending just before dinner.  She
also noted that there were a number of Kramer historical documents available for viewing on one of
the tables - copies of census reports, draft cards, property owner maps showing some Kramer
properties in the late 1800s, among other things.
We then updated the family news.  Marilyn Kramer reported the marriage of  her granddaughter
Heather Kramer to Nick Engle on October 16, 2011.  Ken Kramer reported that his daughter Katie
(Katherine) Kramer married Michael Krsulich on March 5, 2011 at the Kimmel Center in
Philadelphia.  Kurt Kramer reported the marriage of his daughter Jacqueline Kramer to Eric
Bohnenblust on August 21, 2010 in Gettysburg, PA.
We had some Graduations also announced.  Allison Usavage, daughter of Donna and Greg
Usavage, graduated from Ithaca University after just 3 years, with a major in Photography and
Cinema.  Zachary Kramer, son of Ken Kramer, graduated from Downingtown East High School and
will be attending Penn State in the fall.
Secretary Bethanne Cassidy read a note she received from Margaret Sterner, back in November.  
Margaret gave address updates for her children and family updates for Lois Kramer Pritz's family.  
Margaret noted that she was currently in hospice care, and if she gets well enough she will move in
with her daughter.  After Bethanne read the letter, Mark Kramer updated us all that his sister,
Margaret, had passed away on March 8.  We were all saddened to hear of the loss.
At last year's reunion, along with our celebration today, we also discussed having a multi-day
gathering at Janice Kramer's place in Tioga County, PA.  It was announced that those dates will be
September 16,17 and 18.  Anyone who is interested, please get in touch with Doris Bossert or
Janice Kramer.  
Doris also noted that she had information on the Weisel Hostel, located in Nockamixon Park, for
lodging during next year's reunion.  If we have enough people interested - 10 to 12 people
committing - we could book the entire Hostel for our use.  Cost would be $17.20 per person, per
night.  Anyone who wants to spend a few more days in the area can get in touch with Doris about
this possibility.  We would still hold the reunion at the park in Silverdale.
Patty Jones Buskirk gave an update on her parents, Helen & Dave, living in Florida.  They are now
in a rehab center, and in the same room.  They are getting through their medical issues.  
As far as Election of Officers, this year our President has declared a Monarchy!  Since we have too
many other things happening this year, we are forgoing an election and all current office holders
will automatically continue for another year!  (No complaints were heard from the peanut gallery!)  
Queen Doris then crowned the other officers with lovely Burger King crowns!

After our meal, we held the annual peanut scramble and had some time for socializing, bidding on
the silent auctions and checking out the historical documents.  It was then about time for our bus
tour of Silverdale.  The bus arrived and everyone loaded on.  Our first two stops were the Aaron
Kramer homestead and across the street was one of the homes that Leidy Kramer and his family
lived in.  We got to chat with the homeowners at both houses, actually a father and daughter
across the street from each other (much like Aaron and Leidy lived across from each other!).  The
man who lived at Aaron Kramer's home, Walter Hockman, said he actually knew Leidy Kramer
when he (Walter) was a boy, as the Hockman family moved to this property in the 1930s, when
Walter was just a baby.  He also said that for many years the words 'A. Kramer and Sons' could be
read on top of the side of the barn.  It was worn away by this time, though.  We also learned that
the house across the street had not been built on that property.  It was once a toll-house down the
road and around  the corner, and had been loaded on a platform and moved by horses across the
fields!
We then drove past the old Gehman School / Pierce Library building, where the Kramer children
walked to school from the farm (uphill, both ways, of course!).  We drove back into town, told some
stories about this end of town, then got off the bus for a little walking tour section.  We walked Main
Street, past the old Benner's Bakery and the home that Helen and Dave Jones lived in when they
were first married.  On the corner was the home of Lloyd and Tina Kramer.  Doris Bossert and
Molly Fidler told a little bit about their history in this house.  We went around the corner onto
Walnut Street and saw the house that Paul and Peg Kramer lived in.  Paul actually had the house
built after he returned from the war.  Across the street were two more houses that Leidy Kramer
and his family had lived in.  The second home was where they lived when their daughter Helen, the
youngest child, was born.  From here we got back on the bus and headed out to the other end of
Main Street.
We got off the bus on Main Street towards the west end of town, after telling some more stories
while we had the use of the microphone.  We walked back towards the center of town, passing a
house that Leidy and Jemima Kramer lived in during their later years, and the Silverdale Garage,
built by George and Grace (Kramer) Knapp, where they lived with their family.  Leonard Knapp and
Eileen Bengtson told some stories about living here.  Eileen said that when it was being built, she
actually was up on the roof of building!  Next we walked past the old Wismer's Pants Factory (now
an antique store) where many of the Kramers worked over the years, the house that Clarence and
Edna Kramer lived in, and the home where the Knapps lived before they built the garage.  We
rounded the corner onto Green Street and up to another home that Leidy and Jemima Kramer
lived in with their family.  Florence Kramer Haenn said she remembered moving to this house from
The Silver Inn - an apartment building on the corner, where they lived previously - because all the
children carried their dresser drawers up the street!  By this time, though, Grace Kramer had
married George Knapp, and soon after Clarence Kramer married and moved out, so there were
only 2 adults and 5 children in this home for most of the time there.  This fact amazed the
homeowner that we met, considering she has much fewer people than that in the home and still
finds it to be crowded sometimes!  By the way, Marilyn and Clyde Kramer and Janice (Hinkle) and
Bob Kramer also lived in those apartments at one time, too!

This brought a close to our bus tour.  Some of us walked back to the park from here, and the rest
of us rode the bus back.  It was a very fun and educational tour.  Someone mentioned that it seems
like a Kramer lived in almost every house in Silverdale at one time!  And that Leidy and Jemima
Kramer lived in most of them!  I
do know of two other homes where they also lived, and also had
found the home that Aaron's father, Aaron M. Kramer, and family lived in for a few years before his
death, that were not on our tour.  We never realized we were a family of nomads!

When we returned to the park we had more time for socializing.  Rhonda Geyer, Game Committee,
announced the winners of Guess What's in the Boxes.  #1 was a Flashlight Key Chain; winner Joe
F. Haenn guessed a key chain. #2 was a bottle of shower gel; winner Bethanne Cassidy guessed a
bottle of soap.  The winner of How Many Candies in the Jar was Cody Willett.  There were 247
candies, and Cody guessed 242!  The following categories and winners were also announced:
The Farthest Traveled - Mark Kramer from England;  The Shortest Traveled - Marilyn Kramer from
Silverdale;  The Oldest Man Present - Joe Haenn, 94 years;  The Oldest Woman Present -
Florence Haenn, 90 years;  Most Recently Married - Sherry Knapp-Brown, 6 years;  Longest
Married - Florence and Joe Haenn, 69 years; Youngest Child Present - Matthew Stroud, 7 years
old; Most Exotic Vacation Taken Since Last Reunion - Mark Kramer, went to Galapagos.
After all the prizes were awarded, and we announced the winners of the silent auction items,  we
ordered pizza and soon had dinner with what was leftover.  It seems that everyone had a wonderful
time!

Those in attendance were:  Joe and Florence Haenn, Sherry Knapp-Brown, Janice Kramer, Donna,
Greg, Melissa and Samantha Usavage, Liz and Kenny Knapp, Eileen and Paul Bengtson, Bob
Hinkle, Doris Bossert, Joe Haenn and Lynn Van Scoyoc, Len and Nancy Knapp, Nancy and Kurt
Kramer, Joe and Molly Fidler, Don and Judie Herb, Brian, Rhonda and Sydney Geyer, Barry Hinkle,
Ken and Cari Kramer, Judy Kramer, Mark Kramer, Marilyn Kramer, Glenn Kramer, Bethanne
Cassidy, Kimmie and Cody Willett, Tara Bossert, Kenny Cross, Gretchen, Brian and Matthew Stroud