‘Time’ is finally right for CHS Class of ‘08

       The sleepless nights can finally end for Coronado High School's Class of 2008.

Susan Humphrey and David Engstrom, outgoing and incoming Coronado High principals, respectively, pose in the lobby with a new plaque dedicating the auditorium, which was completed in 2008. The other new plaque, for the 2058 time capsule, is inside the auditorium.
Westside Pioneer photo


School building manager Jim Hoy points at the plaque that's over it now.
Westside Pioneer photo
OK, that might be an exaggeration.
       But at least school administrators were finally able to follow through last week on the pledge they'd made in '08 to install a 50-year time capsule to represent the one class in school history that did not have use of the school auditorium for its senior year.
       Fittingly, the capsule is in the auditorium, which was under construction in 2007-08 but not completed until the following September. In a unique plan, the capsule location (a concrete cut-out to the right of the stage) is marked by a plaque that contains only one word: “2008.”
       Also installed this week was a plaque in the auditorium lobby. Written by outgoing Principal Susan Humphrey, it dedicates the auditorium to “our students, past, present and future.” She and new Principal David Engstrom said it took a couple of years for both plaques mainly because there were more pressing school priorities but at the same time they wanted to do the plaque tasks well.
       The idea with the capsule was and is to pass the “senior secret” down from class to class as the years roll by - the secret being that attached to the rear of the “2008” plaque is a letter from Humphrey telling the students of the Class of 2058 it's OK to bash in the bit of wall behind the plaque to get to the space where the capsule is.
       “I hadn't heard. That's totally awesome,” said Andrew Ives, the '08 student body president, upon learning that the capsule (which actually consists of a couple of containers, according to Engstrom) is finally in place.
       Ives, who has just completed his sophomore year at CSU (coincidentally, he's thinking of becoming a history teacher), will be 68 years old in 2058. He expects to be on hand for the opening ceremony at that time, although he confessed that he isn't sure exactly what will be found when the cut-out is exposed. “We wanted to forget,” he quipped, “so when we open it we'll be surprised.”

Andrew Ives shows cap-sule cut-out in '08.
Westside Pioneer photo

       With the help of Parker King, his former student body vice president, Ives recalled some of the items, including a Coronado T-shirt and hat (“they'll be relics of the past”) and an ipod, loaded with then-popular tunes and powered by a lithium ion battery. The hope, Ives added, is that in case the battery goes dead, people of the year 2058 will still have the ability to replace or recharge the battery so as to hear the music.
       Among other capsule items are contemporary publications, including the Westside Pioneer of May 15, 2008, which told about the capsule and had a picture of Ives holding a box in front of the not-yet-covered cut-out space.
       Also unsure of what's in the capsule is Engstrom, who was a school assistant principal when he worked with Ives and other '08 Student Council members on the capsule plan. “It was their creativity,” he said. “We'll see what comes out in 48 years.”
       As for the senior secret, “there's nowhere you can write that,” he said. “Hopefully they can pass it along.”
       Humphrey's letter behind the plaque comments: “I know that there will be a slight expense to the school to repair the opening after the time capsule has been removed. However, that expense is minimal compared to the time, energy and millions of dollars that were spent on this facility in 2008. It is our hope that the auditorium has served many generations of students well and that it is still serving the needs of the school fifty years later.”
       On the other hand, if the auditorium doesn't make it 50 years or nobody remembers the secret, Ives believes there's still a chance for the memories being retained. “Maybe when they take down the building they'll know,” he said.

Westside Pioneer article