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An 'Inside' Look at Altoona

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by Kinzy Janssen

    When Herb Ruscin was young and impressionable and growing up in Altoona, he threw spear-shaped weeds in his backyard and tried to pass buttons off as legal tender. He identified cars by their hood ornaments. These are the small details that will pique the interest of other 50s- and 60s-era adults, and according to Ruscin they already have. His new book, A Step Inside My Altoona, contains 78 separate memories that each span about two to three pages, and cover the essential chunk of childhood – from first runaway at age three to meeting his wife in a beer bar as a teenager … with plenty of Commandment-breaking to fill in the gaps. “The impressions you get when you’re young really stick with you,” he says. The self-published book is availablefor $20 at Chippewa Valley Museum or by contacting the author at 832-2799.

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