Two individuals have managed to cover 100 years of McPherson tradition within about 15 minutes of video.
Anne Hassler, director for McPherson’s Convention and Visitor’s Bureau, and Keith Cantrell, a McPherson native studying film at Taylor University in Indiana, premiered their documentary of All Schools Day on Friday night.
The documentary, entitled “All Schools Day, Celebrating 100 Years”, focused on the celebration of education over the course of 100 years, using a chalkboard theme to transition between different ASD subjects. Using a combination of video, photos and interviews, the documentary discussed the history of ASD floats, history, May Fete, the carnival, Madathon and other traditions.
Cantrell said he was nervous, but excited to work on the ASD documentary.
“The previous documentary I worked on with the CVB was on the McPherson Globe Refiners, which is a very linear story,” Cantrell said. “It has a clear beginning and end. But with All Schools Day, there are so many great stories.”
Hassler said she was excited to be a part of the project, and dig into the history of McPherson.
The CVB’s previous documentary, “Oil and Gold: the McPherson Globe Refiners Basketball Story,” can be found at www.visitmcpherson.com.
Cantrell shared his passion of making documentaries, saying it gives him the opportunity to show a slice of life.
“You get to know people on a deeper level more than you ever would have,” he said.
“I enjoyed going through old photos and video and seeing what we were like 100 years ago,” she said.
Mike Rausch, a longtime chair for the ASD board, said he began collecting memorabilia of ASD 20 years ago in order to maintain the history of a significant event.
“I knew we had these people with memorabilia that knew the significance of All Schools Day and of those items, but had nowhere to put them,” he said.
Much of those old photos and video became a part both the documentary and a book, which also covers ASD and it’s history.
The documentary was sponsored in part by a grant from the Kansas Humanities Council. It is available for purchase at the McPherson CVB.
Joseph Tuszynski can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, or follow him on Twitter @JoeTSentinel.