- Associated Press - Saturday, January 31, 2015

BEATRICE, Neb. (AP) - When Ruby Genrich scooped her first bag for a customer, she got paid 25 cents per night and all the popcorn she could eat.

Now 91, a lot has changed since she worked at Traubel’s Popcorn Stand in downtown Beatrice in the late 1930s, but the Kensington resident got a blast from her past Thursday.

Residents of the Kensington, a senior living center, operated the new Traubel’s Popcorn Stand for the day recently, an experience that brought back great memories for Genrich.

“It was across the street then and Mr. Traubel was a very good boss,” she told the Beatrice Daily Sun (https://bit.ly/165nECU). “When the weather was bad or something, he would pick us up and take us home. We worked until 9 o’clock sometimes.”

Other things have also changed with the stand, like the modern heater and employees being required to wear gloves.

To provide extra assistance, Genrich’s sister, Janice Edeal, stopped by the stand.

Edeal, 71, also worked at the popcorn stand in the late 1950s.

“It’s cool, because it was quite a novelty back then,” she said. “It meant a lot to us and I think they did a very good job on the stand. It’s been very popular.”

The popcorn stand was opened in 1937 by John and Stella Traubel and served the public at the northeast corner of Fifth and Court streets for 50 years until its closing in 1987.

Today, the stand is in a nearby location on North Fifth Street. The stand was one of the final additions to an overhaul of Fifth Street that changed the traffic flow to two way and added a historic clock, brick mural and colored concrete to the street.

In January 2013, Community Possibilities, Inc., began raising funds to revive the Traubel legacy.

The nonprofit corporation, established to initiate, participate in and help fund projects focused on fortifying and restoring historic aspects of Gage County, raised more than $7,000 through garage sales, various community events and donations to start construction on the new stand.

Trudy Spicer, program coordinator at the Kensington, said all the proceeds from the day would be donated to a worthy cause.

“All the proceeds we make today are going to the Alzheimer’s Association,” she said. “I just thought it would be something fun for our folks to do. It’s kindness week, so it’s our way of giving back to the community and I thought it would be really fun for Ruby to come experience it again.”


Information from: Beatrice Sun, https://www.beatricedailysun.com

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