We recently hosted a luncheon for our retired employees at the Spiceland Community Center. 27 of 47 living retirees attended. Jackie Wolfe traveled the farthest, driving 250 miles from Marietta, Ohio.
Company owners Mike Broome, Chris Broome and John Pidgeon updated the group on changes in the company and its products in recent years. Sue Wills reminded the group that she was Mike and John’s babysitter when they visited their grandparents in Spiceland 60 years ago. Ted Applegate commented that when he started to work at Draper after the Second World War we only had 11 employees. Mai Nguyen reminisced about coming to America from South Vietnam in 1977, settling in Spiceland and getting a job at Draper.
After lunch Production Manager Dick Estelle took the group on a plant tour. Those who had not been back in recent years were amazed at the company’s growth and new automated production equipment.
It was great to see a lot of old friends and we promised to do it again soon.
Incidentally, the Spiceland Community Center was Draper’s first projection screen factory. We made screens there from 1960 to 1983. Prior to 1960 it was Alton Evans’ Dry Goods Store.