Time machines, flying cars, robot servants and a cure for cancer. Such was the vision of the future as imagined by a group of more than 50 Napa elementary school students.
The youths gathered Tuesday afternoon to help dedicate a new time capsule at the Napa County Library in downtown Napa. Their letters, written to their future selves, had been chosen to be included with the capsule, which will be sealed for the next 50 years.
Following the library’s construction in 1974, a time capsule inside a copper box was placed in one of the library’s walls. During preparation for the library’s 2011 remodel, staff discovered the time capsule, which had all but been forgotten. The capsule was subsequently opened at the library’s grand re-opening in June 2011.
After Tuesday’s ceremony, the library’s new time capsule will be sealed and replaced in the interior wall where it was found. It will contain the letters from the students and other Napa County artifacts.
On Tuesday, more than 150 people assembled to listen to a group of students read their letters and view the items to be squirreled away for the next five decades.
“We wanted to (include) something that would represent Napa and popular culture of the time,” said Danis Kreimeier, director of library services. “We wanted things that would be interesting” to the Napans of 50 years from now.
Much of the ephemera chosen was from this era, but a few items from the original time capsule will also be included, the director noted. New pieces added to the time capsule included a Simpson’s comic book, the last print edition of Newsweek magazine, an invitation to Auction Napa Valley, a bottle of wine from the Napa Valley Vintners, an edition of the Napa Valley Register, an MP3 book and a glassy-winged sharpshooter prevention magnet. The smallest item was probably a weights and measures sticker as usually seen on gas pumps. The largest item was probably the newspaper or wine, said Kreimeier.
Kylie Evans, a third-grader at Shearer Elementary School, predicted in her letter that she would still be friends with her friends today. The 9-year-old also said she would remember 50 years from now that her letter was included inside the time capsule.
Carson Teague, a seventh-grader at St. John the Baptist Catholic School said that he was happy his letter was chosen to be included in the capsule.
“I wrote it thinking I hope it gets in. I feel proud of myself.”
“I’m half embarrassed and half excited,” to read her letter before the crowd, said Hayden LaRocque Green, a second-grader at Browns Valley Elementary School. Her classmate, Marco Cassiani agreed.
“I’m nervous,” too, he said. Would he be back in 50 years when the capsule is opened? “I hope I will,” he said.
Madison Sullivan of Napa Valley Alternative school addressed her letter to those in the future who would read her message. She hoped that flying cars and skateboards were already being used, Sullivan wrote. “If not, invent them now, please.”
“I would like to help people that don’t have a home,” read Alexander Dehzad from St. John’s. He hopes to live in a world without disease and see a cure for cancer, blindness and deafness.
Abigail McCulloch of St. John’s hoped for flying cars as well, along with new kinds of music. She predicted that the future would bring more knowledge about science and technology.
Christopher Moore of Silverado Middle School wrote an entertaining tale to his future self recalling his childhood escapades to date. He predicted a cure for cancer, “robots that do your chores,” anti-aging pills, jet packs and world peace.
Kreimeier ended the event by officially inviting all to attend the opening of the time capsule 50 years from now —April 23, 2063.ࢣ