The old copies of the Enterprise are treasures of local history with "stories" that probably would not make the news today. There was a daily column on page 3 with the simple heading, "About Town," and readers were used to sending in little notes about people visiting or other happenings. So someone was wise enough to tell about the St. Bernard's School trip from the Enterprise, June 24, 1971
"It was a fun-filled day Monday when about 40 sixth grade St. Bernard's school youngsters traveled by bus to St. Joseph's Shrine in Montreal, lunched there, and spent the afternoon at Belmont Amusement Park where they dipped and screamed, twirled and swirled, becoming dizzy with the delight of the amusements. This was the culmination of months of pooling their earnings for just such a celebration at school's end. Some in this group had been classmates since the first grade and will reluctantly be separated to attend middle school.
"Some of the vivaciousness of those wholesome children rubbed off on those who accompanied them: Mrs. Betty Doyle, Mrs. Peggy Callahan, Mrs. Dorothy Reichhart, Mrs. Robert McIntyre, Mr. Lemke and Mr. Craig and Sisters Joseph Marie and Sister Evelyn, and all remarked that it was a glad day for all."
Today, $3.50 might get you a glass of water and a toothpick.
(Enterprise — June 24, 1971)
It seems like yesterday
Boy, reading about that trip brought back a rush of memories about our class trip from St. Bernard's 8th grade graduating class in 1944. Graduation then was a big deal with rolled diplomas tied with blue ribbon, (I still have mine) handed out by Sister Eileen, the principal. There were no teacher "civilians" at that time.
Most of us had never been out of Saranac Lake until we boarded a private railroad car, provided by Steve Shatraw's grandfather who was with the New York Central.
We attended Mass at 4 a.m., had breakfast at the school and boarded the train about 6 a.m. One end of the RR car had a smaller room that was the smoking area. Most of the guys hung out there the entire trip when not running up and down the aisles looking out the windows.
Buses met us at the train station in Montreal and took us directly to the Belmont Amusement Park, which looked to us, like we had landed on another planet. The Sisters handed us strips of big yellow tickets for the rides; Never thought I would survive that first rollercoaster ride we spent most of the day there, went to dinner at the famous Queen-E hotel - back on the bus, back to the train, back to Saranac Lake. Try to organize a trip like that today and it would take a year and a committee of 10.
Kathleen Bigrow's column
Kathleen was great photographer and a real newshound - if anything was happening in her area she was there - but her column carried the "little" news of the day, which is probably the most interesting to readers so here is a sample from 39 years ago.
"The June meeting of the Tupper Lake Shuffle Club (I don't know if the "Shuffle" is a dance, a board or a card game?) was held Monday night at the Tupper Lake Country Club. First prize was won by Mrs. Earl R. Trudeau; second, Mrs. Charles Bellows; low, Mrs. Edward Forkey and game prize, Mrs. Kenneth Bluteau."
"Swimming instructors Maureen Magher and Thomas Provost will be at Little Wolf Beach from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday, June 26, to register children for swimming instruction."
Mistakes are not new to any reporter or editor and I suppose most people understand that when thousands and thousands of words and facts are put together there are bound to be errors. So Kathleen had this short paragraph
"Our apologies to the Jack Monakeys and Russell Goulds for erroneously listing the purchase price of their recent transaction."
I wish I knew what the transaction was? But everything reminds me of something else sowhen I was Mayor of SL back in the 1960's Russell Gould, who was with the New York Telephone Company, was Mayor of Tupper Lake. We both attended the Conference of Mayor's meeting in Syracuse headquartered at the Hotel Syracuse.
Mayor Gould, to be funny, would have me paged every day from the front desk of the hotel as though he was really looking for me, but his reason, of course, was to reveal that I may not have been attending every conference session.