Updike’s Shillington Jr. High and High School, now renamed, are “all in” for the grand opening of The John Updike Childhood Home. Governor Mifflin School District donated items pertaining to their most famous alum—John Updike—that will be on display as people tour the house for the first time on Saturday, Oct. 2, 2021. GMSD will also provide meeting space for the morning academic sessions and afternoon panel for the 6th Biennial John Updike Society Conference on Saturday.
For their part, The John Updike Society, which owns and operates the house-museum, opened up the family panel to include Governor Mifflin alums returning for homecoming, and the plan moving forward is to make the house a resource for faculty and students.
It’s the kind of partnership that would have pleased Updike, because students will be involved as volunteers, and students who aspire to write will get the chance to interact with some of the society members who have published books. In the future, both GMSD Superintendent Bill McKay, now a member of the advisory board of The John Updike Childhood Home, and society president James Plath see the partnership extending well into the future. Teachers can use the house for classes, tours, events, and projects yet to be imagined. It’s a win-win situation for Updike’s beloved Shillington.