The following is an excerpt from an oral history the author conducted with Howard Berry, Jr., who grew up in Park City in the 1930s and 1940s.
Howard: The high school experience was really fun. There’s not too much to talk about in the freshman year. The only thing as a freshman you were best to avoid the seniors because they would take you and sit you on the fountain.
Dalton: Oh, to get you all wet?
Howard: To get you all wet. That was their hazing. The sophomore year I played basketball on the junior varsity team. It wasn’t called junior varsity at that time, it was called sophomore team. I played football also. The junior year I started to get more involved in school plays, stage management, football and basketball. The senior year was the same. I was involved in a number of different plays, choruses, football, basketball, and music contests. I also served as a student body officer.
Dalton: What position?
Howard: I was elected as a Vice President, but the President choose to leave school early and join the Navy, so I moved on up to President of the student body.
Dalton: Do you have any specific policies that you helped the school implement while you were President?
Howard: No. We had a very stern principal and he set down the principles.
Dalton: Who was the principal?
Howard: Eugene McCusker.
Dalton: What kind of memories do you have of any of the productions you were in? What are some of the plays you did if you could remember?
Howard: One of the plays… was built around a radio studio. My role in it was the announcer. Another year I served as the stage manager for the play that was on.
Dalton: What kind of things did you as the stage manager?
Howard: Help get set up and make any changes needed during the play.
Dalton: What about the sports? Do have any good memories of playing any games?
Howard: I have real good memories of our football and basketball. We had a good basketball team in the junior year and had a fairly good record in the senior year. We won the division championship and went to the state tournament. For football, we were the division champions and went to the state semi-finals, but we lost to Bingham by six points. I was privileged to be chosen on all state football team at that time.
Dalton: What position did you play in both basketball and football.
Howard: I played guard in basketball. In the junior year I played halfback and the senior year, I played right end.
Dalton: Offensive or defensive?
Howard: Both ways. We only had a small group and at that time you played both ways.
Dalton: What years were you in high school?
Howard: I was in high school from 1942 to 46. I graduated in June of 1946.
What I took away from this portion of the interview with Howard was that his high school experience was great because of the variety of activities he got involved in. He played sports, joined theater productions, played in the band, and joined student council.
To the Park City High Schoolers just starting school, we hope you follow in that experience – not the same exact things, but trying out a variety of activities, classes, and experiences to learn more about yourself and the world.
Happy new school year from the Park City Museum!