This was just about the most DELCO thing ever.
I always tease my lovely wife about how Delco she is. I think it was sometime during our dinner at the Riddle Ale House on Saturday that I realized I’d probably have to stop doing that. “I just organized a farewell walk through the Granite Run Mall that was covered by the Daily Times (thanks Phil and Leslie!),” I told her. “I don’t think it gets much more Delco than that.”
Riddle Ale House hasn’t changed, and has aged well. We hit Friendly’s afterward, which, let’s say, hasn’t aged so well.
On our drive over to the farewell walk, I asked Valerie (she took a couple of videos and Instagram won’t embed them for some reason. One here and one here), what the over/under was for people who would show up. She told me 17, while I was a little more modest with an estimate of 10. The response far outweighed our expectations.
As we walked up, we didn’t see anyone else there. Then we were approached by one guy, smiling ear to ear, who remembered me (and I, him) from back in the day. Then another few, and a few more, until we were a crowd.
A security guard approached us, and I thought we were in trouble. I’d been told previously that the mall didn’t like this sort of attention. To my surprise, the guard told us that the Granite Run Mall officials were thrilled and supportive of the walk, and have gotten rid of their “no pictures” rule for the day.
We started out with about 50 outside, and probably met another 25 or so along the way who arrived a little late.
Some people heard about it from me, some people heard about it from photographer Christina Wagner, and in what is the true sign of something going viral, some didn’t know where they heard about it from.
I saw long lost friends that I hadn’t seen in 25 years, which I can’t believe I’m old enough to even say. A girl and her boyfriend who used to hang out at the Sunoco with me after the mall closed, who had become a woman and her husband and their kids. I got Wall stickers from the long-haired guy, talked to the son of my 4th grade teacher, and much more.
I still can’t believe we all remembered each other, almost immediately.
I got a little misty-eyed walking out of that place for the last time. I didn’t interview people or do the podcast like I said I would, because it seemed like it would be better for everyone to just have a good time.
If you were there, thanks so much for coming. It was neat that it worked out so well. If you’ve got pictures you can share, just email them to me, I’d love to see them.
Made the RTRS podcast & snapped a photo w my bro & Howard Eskin in my last trip to Granite Run Mall. Not a bad day. pic.twitter.com/FtxyUnOuxL
— Will Negron (@HomeoftheThrill) April 11, 2015
— BEETLE BAYLEY (@beetlebayley219) April 12, 2015