Westchester County Memories

J Philip Faranda March 1, 2011

I took Catherine out for a little drive with Daddy, just us two, so I could go to Best Buy and scout out my next piece of technology. I live in Briarcliff, so to get to Hartsdale you take the Taconic Parkway south, and Catherine asked me about that big building on the right, which happened to be Westchester Medical Center. I told her it was Grasslands. 

Fellow residents and natives of our fair county will understand the error. Westchester Medical was known Grasslands when I was Catherine’s age. It got me thinking- and remembering. 

I remember when you referred to someone who was rich, the reference wasn’t “like Trump” but “like Rockefeller!” The governor lived in nearby Pocantico Hills. 

I remember my bicycle shop was in Pleasantville. It is a restaurant now. 

I remember when the big employer in Tarrytown was General Motors. They had a big plant on the banks of the Hudson. 

I remember when everyone knew someone that worked at IBM. 

I remember when Croton wasn’t just known for their huge train station- they were known for the landfill at Croton Point. If you ever lost something, you’d shrug your shoulders and say it must be in Croton Dump by now. 

I remember when the Ossining High School vs Sleepy Hollow football game was a rivalry heard ’round the county. Bruce Jenner even played in that game! They haven’t played in 20 years now, but will resume in 2011. 

I remember when the entire Hudson Valley was area code 914. Now it seems like you need a passport to cross the Tappan Zee Bridge into Rockland County, 15 minutes from my house. Only Westchester is 914 after the 845 split, and the local magazine calls our county “The 914.”

I remember when the Galleria in White Plains was the big swanky new mall. 

I remember when Brewster, where my uncle and grandmother both lived, was far away. 

I remember Yankee games on channel 11 and Met games on channel 9.

I remember people lamenting that Joe Namath’s knees were shot.

I remember people in disbelief that the Giants played in New Jersey.

I remember wondering if Heaven was actually better than Rye Playland.

I remember my mother listening to Arlene Francis on WOR 710 AM 

I am sure my fellow Westchesterites can add a few recollections of their own. 

Join The Conversation

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.