Bruce Hennes first heard about Coventry Village in Cleveland Heights as a teenager living in Canton, Ohio. Soon after high school he moved to Coventry, planted his roots, and became heavily involved in the community. He shares his experiences with and perspectives on Coventry Neighbors Inc., Coventry Community Development Organization, Coventry Village Special Improvement District, and the Coventry Street Fair.
Hennes, Bruce (interviewee)
Nemeth, Sarah (interviewer)
"Bruce Hennes interview, 29 August 2018" (2018). Cleveland Regional Oral History Collection. Interview 911096.
Sarah Nemeth [00:00:00] Hi, my name is Sarah Nemeth. I'm here today with Bruce Hennes. This is for the Cleveland Regional Oral History Project. And today, it's August 29, 2018. You please state your name to the record?
Bruce Hennes [00:00:11] Sure. My name is Bruce Hennes, H-E-N-N-E-S.
Sarah Nemeth [00:00:16] Thank you for being here.
Bruce Hennes [00:00:17] My pleasure.
Sarah Nemeth [00:00:18] And where and when were you born?
Bruce Hennes [00:00:20] I was born in 1954 in Newark, New Jersey.
Sarah Nemeth [00:00:25] And when did you move to these parts?
Bruce Hennes [00:00:28] Well, my parents forced me to move in 1959 to Akron, Ohio. I was four years old. I was not given a choice. So I spent my elementary school days in Akron. And then we were the fifth Jewish family move out to Bath, Ohio, in 1966. And then in 1968 we moved to Canton, Ohio, where I went to high school.
Sarah Nemeth [00:00:50] OK, and was there a large Jewish population in Canton?
Bruce Hennes [00:00:55] There were three synagogues, so at that time it was, there was certainly a large enough population to support three synagogues and three rabbis and the kind of infrastructure that goes with it. Not a huge... I couldn't give you the number... Wasn't a huge population, but it was a great place to grow up.
Sarah Nemeth [00:01:13] Did you have any other Jewish kids in your class?
Bruce Hennes [00:01:18] In my... I was only there for four years in high school and there were only a small handful of us at that particular high school that were Jewish. So, no, not a lot of Jewish kids.
Sarah Nemeth [00:01:29] What did you... So after high school, did your family move?
Bruce Hennes [00:01:34] After... Yeah, after high school, when I was in high school, probably in 1968, '69, I started hitchhiking up to Coventry Village to hang out with the hippies because there were better hippies up here than there were in Canton, Ohio. So I've been really up here for a very, very long time. And then eventually when right after I graduated from high school, I moved to Toronto with some friends for a couple of months. And then between my freshman and sophomore year in college, I got my first apartment in Coventry Village. That would have been 1973, summer of '73.
Sarah Nemeth [00:02:19] Did you literally hitchhike?
Bruce Hennes [00:02:20] Literally hitchhiked. I hitchhiked all over the country in the late 1960s and early 1970s.
Sarah Nemeth [00:02:26] Could you maybe explain like how you hitchhiked?
Bruce Hennes [00:02:33] It was probably just as dangerous as it sounds but we didn't know it. We literally would whether we were going two miles away or whether I was hitchhiking from Canton, Ohio, to Cincinnati or to New York City, I literally would stand on the side of the road and stick my finger out. And you'd wait until somebody came along and they knew what the symbol was, just like I'm showing you right now, and somebody would stop and you'd run and get in the car. I actually ended up doing so much hitchhiking. I actually had a sign that said "Student to __" All right. And then I had inserts that I could put in. Akron, Cleveland, Erie, Pennsylvania, you know, wherever I was going. And I would pull the insert out and the sign would fold in thirds so I could get into the into the car. Now, of course, I can't even pick up hitchhikers, let alone hitchhike myself, because it is it is dangerous. But at that time, everybody was—not everybody—but a lot of us were hitchhiking and our parents either didn't know or didn't care. But it was a very much accepted mode of transportation. So.
Sarah Nemeth [00:03:36] Do you have any memorable experience that sticks out to you?
Bruce Hennes [00:03:42] Oh, my God, I can remember my first. Again, I'm a long-haired hippie-looking 16 year old, you know, wearing the army jacket with an American flag on the side and a peace symbol on the other on the lapel, the other lapel, and I can remember getting in somebody's car and that person being what I thought was an older businessman. He was probably, oh, 30 years old. But to me, he was like an older businessman. He's wearing a jacket and tie. And I get in the car and he looks over and says, hey, you want to you know, you want a joint, you know, as I die, I'm not going to tell you whether I said yes or no to that. But that was memorable. I can remember hitchhiking from Cincinnati up to Toronto and frankly, being picked up by a gay guy who asked if I wanted oral sex. You know, he wanted to do oral sex on me. And I—I'll never forget my answer—I said thank you. I'm very flattered, but that's not my thing. Yeah. And he was cool about it and I was cool about it. And I got out of the car and I thought, what the hell? You know, just so it's still not my thing, but...
Sarah Nemeth [00:05:00] It's still interesting. That's an interesting experience.
Bruce Hennes [00:05:03] Yeah. And the last real quick story I'll tell you was I was, I was driving—I had a car at the time—I was driving from Cincinnati to Toronto. I was bored out of my mind. I was looking for a hitchhiker to pick up. Figure I have somebody to talk to. Hour goes by. Two hours, three, four hours go by. Finally, about an hour outside of Toronto, I finally see a hitchhiker hitchhiking. I pull over the side, I jam the brakes on. I go skidding across the gravel. He gets into the car and I'm so happy to have someone to talk to. And he turned out to be deaf and mute. To this day, I have no idea how I found the only deaf mute hitchhiker. We did a little sign language. I took him to where he was going and that was one of my stories.
Sarah Nemeth [00:05:49] So that's really interesting. I've never actually talked to anyone who hitchhiked. Maybe my parents, I think they did.
Bruce Hennes [00:05:55] Yeah, they're probably my age. So, actually, they're probably younger than me,
Sarah Nemeth [00:05:59] Probably, maybe a little less. So why did you... You mentioned that Coventry had kind of the more real hippies. How did you hear about Coventry... [inaudible]?
Bruce Hennes [00:06:13] That's a great question, and I have absolutely no idea. I think there was a jungle drum that kind of went out. We must have heard it in some of the bars or some of the... There was... We had a coffeehouse. When I say coffeehouse, I don't mean one like Starbucks. By a coffeehouse, more like the kind they had in New [York] that would be more associated with Greenwich Village or other larger cities, in Canton, of all places called the Air Castle, where we would have folk singers come in and people playing some kind of alternative music, you know, and that's where the hippies in Canton hung out. So somebody must have said Coventry's the place to be. And we came up here and there were cool stores at the time, still cool stores there. But you know, there were leather shops and I'm sure some of the other people you've interviewed have talked about some of the stores that used to be on Coventry. And there was a good vibe here. I knew this was the place that I wanted to be. And sure enough, what, 50 years later, I'm still here. The hair's a lot shorter, you know, and where we used to rail against "The Man," and now I am "The Man." You know? So things have changed. But I still love the architecture. I still love the kind of people who live around here. I still love the values of the people who are in the area. And this is where I'll always be.
Sarah Nemeth [00:07:36] What was your... Do you remember the first day you got out of the car that you were taking in in Coventry? Were kind of those first moments, maybe not necessarily the first time. Who did you see? Who was here?
Bruce Hennes [00:07:52] A lot of hippie freaks. Yes, I can remember getting out of the car and I can remember seeing the long hair and the clothing. It wasn't just five or ten people like we had in Canton, Ohio. It was... The whole neighborhood looked like that. And I thought, this is great, this is, this is where I want to be. And like I said, we used to come up here a lot to hang out at, in the restaurants. I was never much of a drinker, so I wasn't coming up here to hang out at the bars. But I had friends in Cleveland and we were just like any group. We were in high school. We were high school kids. A lot of high school kids like to do. They hang out and they talk to one another. So instead of hanging out in the mall, we hung out on Coventry.
Sarah Nemeth [00:08:37] Did you also hang out in parks or on the street, or in, not necessarily in a place?
Bruce Hennes [00:08:45] It was probably mostly on the street, you know, or wandering in and out of the shops. Or there was an old Jewish deli, Irv's Delicatessen, that you may have heard a little bit about. You know, we hung out there
Sarah Nemeth [00:08:59] Were the people younger or were they older?
Bruce Hennes [00:09:02] There were a mix, high school kids and college kids and people who were older, older. You know, you also have to remember at that time now here in Cleveland, we have a number of what I would call urban areas. You've got a cool scene downtown. You've got a cool scene in Hingetown. You've got Tremont. You've got West 25th. None of that stuff existed. I mean, they were all there physically, but they were not places that that you really hung out. They were for the most part, they were lower income. They were not necessarily safe places back in the '60s and early '70s. But so Coventry was really the name was the only place in all of northeastern Ohio where you had a strip of stores that that weren't cookie-cutter chains, that had the kind of of Greenwich Village vibe that we were looking for. You know, don't forget to we were also a lot of us were going to say, influenced by what was going on in Haight-Ashbury. Sixty-seven was the summer of love and Woodstock was 1969. So there was a vibe in the land that, you know, that it was time to be free and time to dress the way you wanted to, even though. Is we all thought we were individuals. Of course, we are all dressing like one another. But we weren't dressing like our parents, so it was rebellion. And some of it was centered around opposition to the war in Vietnam at the time. So some of it had, I would say, a deeper, deeper basis, and some of it was superficial as hell. We just wanted to hang around with people who look like us. Um.
Sarah Nemeth [00:10:58] So could you maybe describe a typical dress like what you would normally attire of a...
Bruce Hennes [00:11:06] At the time, it was... Well it was blue jeans, it was bellbottoms, it was moccasins on the feet, it was a little bit of fringe either on the jacket or... When I say fringe, I'm talking about like more Western-style fringe, long kind of fringe. I remember a lot of that. Some of the guys wore bandanas, a lot of hats, like Jimi Hendrix kind of hat, with a big black brim. What else? A lot of military surplus gear which was worn, you know, I'd have to say to be more ironic, rather than supportive of our troops, I mean, I think there are a number of us and I hope a lot of us now who are in our sixties, who actually feel guilty about the way that we are, the way we disrespected our troops back then, we did not welcome them. And I know a number of them now who are still mad about the way they were treated and they have every right to be mad about that. But just just what you think we look like is what we looked like, the beards, the long hair.
Sarah Nemeth [00:12:20] Right, it just seems like talking about this time, it just seems so like not real because it just was so different. So I always have to ask, you know, how did they act and how did you dress and what did people look like and act like?
Bruce Hennes [00:12:36] Well, unfortunately, the people who are on your... who are listening because it's a podcast, that's me on the right, they can't see this picture. That's me on the right and then here's the same picture 50 years later. That's us. First number two. But the picture that you'll probably now leave, I'll let you describe this photo to your listeners. Hold on. I'll find it in one second. Oh, here it is. OK, and this is what I looked like in 1974. No, '72, I'm sorry, this is 1972, would you like to describe that for your listeners?
Sarah Nemeth [00:13:23] Yeah, well you look like Charles Manson.
Bruce Hennes [00:13:26] Yeah!
Sarah Nemeth [00:13:27] And. Just kind of, um.
Bruce Hennes [00:13:32] Like, how in the hell did my parents let me stay at home, right? Pretty much so, yeah. I don't know. They were saints, so.
Sarah Nemeth [00:13:42] Was there a big police presence in Coventry when you started?
Bruce Hennes [00:13:47] Yes, yes. And there yes. Did anybody tell you about "Ticket Man Ernie?"
Sarah Nemeth [00:13:52] No.
Bruce Hennes [00:13:52] Oh, "Ticket Man Ernie" was a big, tall African American police officer and he had a reputation for busting people for jaywalking. I mean, they, like the Cleveland Heights cops would hassle the hippies. They didn't want 'em there. There was a real culture clash there. Of course, there was a lot of paranoia about the narcs, whether or not groups were being checked out by undercover police. I never really... I don't know if ever that was true, but, you know, and there was a little bit of petty drug dealing certainly going on. I didn't... I never saw any hard drugs in the area. I saw a lot of pot being sold. But no, the police at that time did not get along particularly well. On the other hand, fast forward to 1975, '76, when a group of us became homeowners in the area and got married, because my cohort got married pretty early and put roots down, the cops very quickly went from being our enemy to being our best friends, you know, when we had some real stake in the community.
Sarah Nemeth [00:14:59] Was there any... Were you around the motorcycles were...
Bruce Hennes [00:15:02] I came here right at the tail end. So I don't have any good stories except to say I stayed out of their way.
Sarah Nemeth [00:15:10] It seems like just that area was so young. I don't know if you ever picked up on an older generation. Of course they were there, you mentioned, but kind of being standoffish towards...
Bruce Hennes [00:15:23] You know, I think I was a typical kid at that time. I wasn't paying any attention to what anybody over the age of twenty-five or thirty was doing. So, no, I really don't have any memories...
Sarah Nemeth [00:15:35] What about playing people playing music and poetry and...
Bruce Hennes [00:15:39] Yeah, there were a lot of you know, we call them buskers now, but there were a lot of people, you know, with the open guitar case on the street. You know, it's still funny when I when I see that happen here, nowadays, I think it's kind of a rite of passage that people still come down to Coventry to do that type of thing.
Sarah Nemeth [00:16:00] Keeps the identity going.
Bruce Hennes [00:16:00] Yeah, absolutely.
Sarah Nemeth [00:16:02] So when did you join... Or why did you join Coventry Neighbors?
Bruce Hennes [00:16:08] I was in my second apartment. I was married. I got married very young. I got married right out of college when I was 20 years old. For some reason, my cohort, we just got married young. It was kind of like, OK, we're graduating. What do you want to do next? Oh, let's get married. Oh, that's cool. And I mean, nowadays, if you told your your folks or if you had a friend who was twenty or twenty-one or twenty-two said they want to get married, the parents would kill them. Say you are not getting married, over our dead body are you getting married. And it was shortly after my cohort got married that early that the age span kind of jumped up to late twenties and even early thirties. But our cohort got married very young and so I think I was twenty-one years old, maybe twenty-two. And I was living in my second apartment on Lower Hampshire with my wife, and this scraggly looking guy—I was sitting on the front porch—literally came up and introduced himself and said, Hi, my name is Alan Rapoport. I'm president of Coventry Neighbors. This would have been 1976? Yeah, 1976. I'm President of Coventry Neighbors, and you know, gee, I wonder if I could get you to come to a meeting and work on our street fair. And I said, what's Coventry Neighbors, what's the street fair? And Alan has been one of my best friends for all those years. And I eventually succeeded him as president of Coventry Neighbors and ran the street fair.
Sarah Nemeth [00:17:39] What was the... like, could you maybe explain what the Coventry Neighbors people, like what were the people like?
Bruce Hennes [00:17:47] At that time in Cleveland Heights, every elementary school district had a neighborhood organization. So there was Coventry Neighbors. There was Oxford Neighbors. I think there was a Cedar Lee group, but there were five or six neighborhood groups. They were... What they all had in common, I'm sure, were the fact that they were diverse, that the people who came to those meetings were diverse in age, diversity in income, black and white, Jewish, non-Jewish. And they were people who really cared about the neighborhood. I think what the difference was between Coventry Neighbors and some of the other neighborhood groups was that, frankly, we had Alan Rapoport and we had who had political ambitions. We had a guy named Larry Beam. I don't know if you've talked to Larry.
Sarah Nemeth [00:18:43] Someone did.
Bruce Hennes [00:18:43] Someone did. Yeah. Larry worked for the city at the time but lived in the neighborhood. We had a guy named David Burloser, F. David Gill, Dennis Nierman, and these were people who not only cared about the neighborhood itself, but they cared about the city itself. And, you know, they I came in a little bit later than they all did, but they kind of taught me what was going on at City Hall. And I got to meet all the other city council people. And we also published a newspaper at that time. I can remember going to the Heights Community Congress and we would run the news. We create the newspaper, which in and of itself was a community activity because you have to get volunteers to do it. We would type things out on I forget what the form was called. It was, and we run it off on a Stettner, which was an old machine that would go and would run them off a page at a time. It's kind of an old technology that nobody uses anymore. But so when Alan ran for so we had two big organizing events. We had the street fair every year, which was incredibly labor intensive. It took six months of hard work to do. And then we had... Alan ran for political office and that also engaged a lot of the same people. But it gave us reasons to be together and gave us reasons to go door to door and gave us reasons to to work with City Hall to say we like this. We don't like that. We were actually going to city hall meetings and watching what they were doing and monitoring them and then reporting and then putting the information about that because The Plain Dealer wasn't covering that kind of stuff. They didn't cover real local stuff like that. We were putting stuff in our monthly newspaper that nobody else had and we would find it quoted in The Plain Dealer, you know, so there was the illusion of power on that. So those were just great times. And then we would argue with one another like any other group.
Sarah Nemeth [00:20:41] But you guys were mostly young.
Bruce Hennes [00:20:44] Yes.
Sarah Nemeth [00:20:46] That just seems so unreal to me, how young you were and still active. Now it's not really... [crosstalk]
Bruce Hennes [00:20:52] Well, but also it was at a time where you had three television channels and you didn't have, you certainly didn't have an Internet, you didn't have cell phones. And there weren't quite as many women working at that time. That was on the rise, but it wasn't universal the way it is now. We're talking about spouses where, where you had to have two incomes, as you do pretty much nowadays. I'm trying to think, I mean, just the whole culture in the United States was different at that time, there weren't as many distractions, so I think... Whereas our fathers and mothers would do volunteer activities that were... You know, I know my father... my mother was active in Pioneer Women, which was a Jewish group that supported the state of Israel. She was active with Brandeis, which was a group that helped send money to Brandeis University. My father was involved in the men's club at the, at the Jewish Center in Canton, Ohio. I'm sure Alan Rapoport's father and mother weren't... They were all involved in organizations that were probably religious based. My father in law was a Mason. All right? I mean, people did stuff... They went bowling and they, and they did things in fraternal groups. I think we were the next incarnation where I didn't want to have anything to do with Masonry. It just didn't appeal to me. And I really wasn't motivated to do a whole lot, you know, in, in groups that... I was somewhat active in Jewish groups, not as active as my parents were. But a neighborhood group appealed to me, so I don't think it was really any different. It was just the activism of the '60s led to those kind of sort of groups, as opposed to fraternal groups,
Sarah Nemeth [00:22:50] So would you classify Coventry Neighbors as a civic organization?
Bruce Hennes [00:22:53] Absolutely.
Sarah Nemeth [00:22:55] Or was it an activist organization?
Sarah Nemeth [00:22:55] No, I'd call it a civic organization.
Sarah Nemeth [00:22:58] And why?
Sarah Nemeth [00:22:59] It wasn't looking for... It wasn't... Well, it depends on how you define activist organization. We weren't trying to to do societal change, alright? We weren't trying to raise the visibility of women or, you know, or strike a note that children should get better educations. We were focused solely on the quality of living in our neighborhood, in the city that we cared so much about.
Sarah Nemeth [00:23:26] So, in doing so you represented the interests of the residents?
Bruce Hennes [00:23:31] Yes.
Sarah Nemeth [00:23:32] Or, also... [crosstalk].
Bruce Hennes [00:23:32] Well, I think a combination of ourselves and. Well, it's a good question. Certainly the residents and it wasn't until, oh, my gosh, I'd have to say '75, maybe the early 19... Now we'd always had merchants who were active in Coventry Neighbors, and we tried to help the merchants. I mean, the street fair was helpful to the merchants in terms of giving them an economic jolt in the middle of the summer. We Always had events with the merchants. We would do something at Halloween time. We promoted them. We publicized them because they didn't have an infrastructure of their own. They had a merchant association that was concerned with garbage and snowplows, but they didn't really have an association that was good at promotion or, or some of the things that they needed. We provided that for them somewhere along the line. I want to say, the early 1980s, Chuck Owen, who was also past president of Coventry Neighbors. Chuck was... and had a background in urban planning and, and community organizing. I forget who he worked for at the time, but he brought to us the idea of a, of a commercial improvement district. No, not a special improvement district. I can't remember the name. I'm just blanking. It was a..
Sarah Nemeth [00:25:01] Oh...
Bruce Hennes [00:25:02] It was the...
Sarah Nemeth [00:25:03] Was it the development corporation?
Bruce Hennes [00:25:03] Yes, yes. Community... CDC, community development corporation, that could be formed and get funding from the city because cities could use some of their government dollars, whereas a city couldn't easily give Coventry Neighbors any money, nor did we really want any of their money. A CDC could be a recipient of those dollars. So Chuck and I got together and we put together the first CDC in the city of Cleveland Heights. That was really... When you go back and look at it, that was... Years later, we realized that was the beginning of the end of Coventry Neighbors, because we, we ended up splitting the commercial interests away from the residential interests. We didn't know it at that time. And it may have fallen apart eventually for whatever reason. But all of a sudden now we had two organizations, not that were competing against each other, but we didn't go to their meetings, they didn't come to our meetings. So there was a bit of a split there. And that eventually led to the creation of a special improvement tax district. That must have been in 1990, maybe, 1991. At that, at that point I had my own company, Hennes Communications, and given this my background in neighborhood organizing – I've been president of Coventry Neighbors – at that time there was only one special improvement district, which was a creation of the state legislature in the state of Ohio, and that was down in Dayton. City of Cleveland.... I actually had a contract from the city of Cleveland Heights to form the special... the second special improvement district in Ohio, and that became ultimately the Coventry Village Special Improvement District, the Coventry Village SID, which is a creature... Whereas an improvement district is made up of members who were just store owners, a special improvement district by law, by, I guess it would be by statute, actually, by statute. The only people who can become members of a special improvement district are property owners. So as someone already explained to you, exactly what a citizen, if I can get it down to 60 seconds. A SID is... So we went we went to all the property owners in Coventry. There were thirt[een]... in the commercial district there, at that time – I don't know what it is now, probably about the same – there were 13 separate property owners. I went to each of them and I said, basically, I want you to voluntarily raise your taxes. Your property taxes. Now the raison d'être for a special improvement district, as opposed to a development corporation, is once a city is established, it becomes man... once you get a majority of property owned by the linear foot – because some property owners own one building, some more than one building – once you get a majority of property owners by the linear foot to say yes to the creation of a SID in the agreement that they will raise their own property taxes by a certain amount, it becomes mandatory for all the property owners in the given special improvement district. What that gets you is, with a development corporation, if you have 13 property owners and five of them say, I'm not paying any money for snowplow services, you still have to plow their sidewalk in the winter. You can't plow around them. That doesn't do your patrons any good. So, same thing with advertising, same thing with promotion, same thing with putting on special events. It creates a budget that you can then rely on for as, I'm sorry, it creates an income stream to the SID that you can then rely on for a period of five years before it needs to be renewed again. So we got a majority of the property owners to say yes to this and created the SID. Now, I wanted to make the SID quite large. I wanted to go into the, into the apartment district and include the apartment owners in the city, because that would have given us a very large budget and because it would have been so... encompass so many property owners, it actually probably would have worked out to less money per square foot or per however, whatever our formula was at the time. But the merch[ants]... the apartment owners at that time basically told me to go jump in a lake because they said, what do we need you for? We're ninety-nine percent occupied. You know, we have no trouble renting our apartments. Now at that time, this is probably twenty years ago, twenty-five years ago, I didn't have a crystal ball. Alright? I said to them, look, you're not going to be a hundred percent occupied forever. You need to band together and make the whole neighborhood together in mass or en mass, if you will. I didn't foresee a Hingetown or a West 25th or a Downtown. I'm not clairvoyant, but that's exactly what happened, and now, I'm not saying Coventry's hurting, but you go through Coventry and there are for rent signs in Coventry, the likes of which I have never seen because people have choices now that they didn't have before. So that's the long story of why we have a SID. And that also, again, was another reason that led to the dem[ise]... That, plus the fact that people with... We had two-income families now. There were more distractions, and people just aren't as club-oriented or civic-oriented as they used to be, ultimately led to the demise of Coventry Neighbors. Coventry Neighbors went moribund for, I think about five or six or seven years. I think Larry Beam was the last president. Then he just couldn't get anybody to come to meetings. And then we revitalized it probably about five years ago for about ten minutes because we still had money in the bank account. So I was actually the last president of Coventry Neighbors. I convened a meeting of all the past presidents and we made the decision to give, give the money... I think we gave it all to the Heights Heritage Center? The Heights Historical Center, and we gave our archives to them as well. And that was the end of Coventry Neighbors.
Sarah Nemeth [00:31:44] Which is great, because that's what I'm basing everything off of.
Bruce Hennes [00:31:46] Yes. So you can thank me for all that as well.
Sarah Nemeth [00:31:49] Yes, thank you very much!
Bruce Hennes [00:31:49] My pleasure.
Sarah Nemeth [00:31:50] Going back to your experience in Coventry Neighbors from the beginning. When did you become president?
Bruce Hennes [00:32:02] Oh, gosh, that must have been in the mid 1980s, somewhere along the line, I couldn't give you the exact... You would know better than I because you've got... You probably, you've looked at the Coventry Village Newses. I don't remember.
Sarah Nemeth [00:32:16] So you started with the group in the mid '70s?
Bruce Hennes [00:32:22] Yeah, I think my first meeting was probably in 1976 or '77, right in there. They had already had three or four street fairs.
Sarah Nemeth [00:32:31] Could you maybe describe a street fair, your first one that you went to?
Bruce Hennes [00:32:37] The Coventry Village Street Fair. Now you can see the big smile on my face. It was, for 10 years, probably the most fun t
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