Baltimore Sun

25 years ago: Old Coca-Cola bottles phased out in Harford in favor of cans

From The Aegis dated April 7, 1988:

Coca-Cola was phasing out its 6.5-ounce bottles 25 years ago, and one of the last was bought from the dispenser at Harford Mutual Insurance Company in Bel Air.


The traditional hourglass-style bottled drinks were being replaced in most places by cans or non-returnable bottles. All but one seller locally had been forced to raise the price from the 5 cents it cost 20 years ago to 30 cents or more so they could cover the $6 per case wholesale prices charged by the Havre de Grace Coca-Cola Bottling Works.

Only Harford Mutual was able to keep the 5-cent price.


A Bel Air day care center was allowed to stay open 25 years ago "pending further judicial review." Circuit Court Judge Cypert O. Whitfill issued an injunction against the State Department of Health's shutdown order, saying that "numerous parents don't want to be protected" by the state agency.

Whitfill did stipulate, however, that no new children be allowed to enroll in the day care, which had come under fire nearly a year earlier because of allegations that children had been sexually abused there.

Despite raising an estimated $24,000 in the last year, Fallston Volunteer Fire Company decided to discontinue its weekly bingo games, drawing criticism 25 years ago this week from at least two community residents.

"Can you afford to give up $25,000 a year?" resident Alice Moore asked. "Don't you need that money?"

Fire officials said their volunteers had been swamped with reaching higher basic standards and new mandated training courses, besides answering emergency calls, and didn't have the time to devote to running bingo.

"It's not like it was 10 years ago, when you could take 80 hours of training, hop on a fire truck and ride forever," Harry Pafel, the fire company chief said.

The county executive 25 years ago proposed a budget that called for 16 percent more in spending, but required no property tax rate increase.

Habern W. Freeman planned to use $15 million in surplus funds from previous operating budgets and the 1987 sale of Harford Memorial Hospital. Were that $15 million not available, the county could have been facing a tax rate increase of up to 70 cents.


Kroh's Nursery, formerly on Bond Street in Bel Air, moved its store to Route 22 next to Aberdeen Sales and Auction. Owners Mickie and Rob Sachs said the new location offered a larger greenhouse and 2-acre nursery and could house an assortment of flowers and shrubs and other gardening supplies.

The new nursery held its grand opening 25 years ago this week, with honored guests Mabel and Curtis Kroh.

It was only April, but Havre de Grace was already thinking parade and fireworks for July 4th.

"Things are looking super" for the mid-summer celebration, the chair of the city's Independence Day Committee said. To date, $10,000 had been raised (a third of what was needed to cover costs of the event).

The 1988 festivities would be kicked off by National Wrestling Federation sanctioned title matches at Havre de Grace High School.

Billy Ripken was featured in an ad 25 years ago this week for Bel Air Athletic Club.


"Spring training is here and we want you on our team! Whether you're a rookie or a seasoned veteran, we have a major league fitness program just for you! Our manager is calling you up to bat - Special Spring Savings are sure to be a hit!"