Two weeks ago, we took our grandson to the Moon Marble Factory at Bonner Springs.
The occasion was an annual event in which marble-making artists came from all over the United States to display their beautiful marbles and give demonstrations of their particular style. It was so fascinating watching these demonstrations.
Seeing the thousands of marbles in all colors and sizes in their gift shop took me back to my childhood when we played marbles in our grade school playground on a daily basis.
We played on the north side of the school building, as the dirt there was ideal to draw the ring and did not have the red shale that was on the rest of the school grounds.
The game that we played we called "keeps." Each player would lag to a line to determine who was to start. The person whose "shooter" came nearest a line had the first shot. Players had to lag before each game.
Each player placed an equal number of marbles in an inner ring. The purpose was to shoot them out of the outer ring one at a time. If your "shooter" stayed in the ring, the next player had a chance to capture it. If he did not capture it, you would have a good chance of shooting all the rest of the marbles out of the ring and you would win the game.
We would continue shooting in turn until the ring was empty. We got to keep the marbles we knocked out of the ring.
The winner was the one with the most marbles.
Everyone had a marble bag that had a drawstring on the top. Some of the guys were expert players, and Don Clark, who was in the eighth grade, was the best. I was in the fifth grade, and Don was really good about sharing with me when I "lost my marbles."