Casper’s, founded in 1909, claims to be Springfield’s oldest café. Springfieldians go there now and then for their Casper’s fix. Yesterday I went with my old pal Larry Wakefield. We ate steaming bowls of chili overflowing onto the plate, crushed crackers into them from a plate on the table, squirted catsup over the onions and pickles on our burgers, and ate with our arms on the table while we amused ourselves looking at the oddball assortment of posters, signs, pictures, and doodads, gabbed with our waitress, and talked of times gone by and of other staples of the past such as Taylor’s, which is still going strong, and others, such as Coley’s and Red’s Giant Hamburg, which are not.
There are times when you have to do something like that. The aging Quonset hut that is home to Casper’s three booths, two tables, and seven stools, looks like it’s held up mostly by tradition. And around here we love our traditions.