Fire chief not forgotten
Grace Carleton Terrell, her sister, Pat Montgomery, and her brother, David Carleton, reminisce about their father, Ralph Carleton, who served many years ago as Elk Rapids fire chief, after reading the Elk Rapids News article about fire chiefs in the last 125 years. Grace said that they are “proud that our father and many other volunteers served the community through the years. In those days there were no beepers, iPhones, tablets, etc. The phone would ring from a live operator. The first to the station started the siren. I think it must have been an air-raid siren for the sound penetrated the whole village. Is it still there? These men, while civic minded, also loved the adrenaline rush. Things don’t change much through the years!”
ER Schools receive grant from Exxon Mobil
A $500 grant has been given to the Elk Rapids Schools from the Elk Rapids EZ Mart and Exxon Mobil. Steve Prissel, Superintendent of Elk Rapids Schools, indicated that this year’s grant would be used for the “Way to Grow” program that supports students from birth to preschool. Blarney Castle Oil Co. along with Exxon Mobil have a long history of supporting educational programs that focus on improvements in these areas from pre-school to higher education.
Around Town with Rob Ford
Is there anything more timeless and well told than the sanctity of the snow day?
Once upon a time, my forefathers dutifully and relentlessly plowed through waist high drifts of wind driven snow to and from school, uphill both ways, the year round.
No matter the difficulty of the circumstances, the quality of the footwear, the lacking of hats, gloves, insulated coats or the age of the ancestor, not getting to school on time was never an option.
The snow was heavier, the roads were worse, the transportation system was less reliable and yet, in the age that predated World War II, school was never called off.
It was a bygone era of hardship and unparalleled perseverance that gets tougher with each passing year of my parents telling about it. Getting to and from school, to hear my parents tell of it, was embraced, appreciated and preferred over staying at home when they were kids.
The modern school aged commuter, many safely buckled into 21st century engineered automobiles, wearing outerwear designed for polar exploration and holding Doppler radar enhanced and accurate one, three and five day forecasts in the palms of their hands, have adopted a game plan filled with methodical and elaborate superstitions to improve their chances of NOT having to go to school tomorrow morning.
I sit somewhere in the middle of this.
Last winter and the early part of this winter notwithstanding, it does seem that the weather was tougher and travel routes were more suspect than when I was a grade schooler. I’m sure that my perspective and my memory of things have changed, but yeah, I remember some pretty brutal snowstorms hitting us on a regular basis.
I also remember hoping upon hope for snow days too though.
We didn’t have the Internet or cell phone technology, of course, but we did have an AM/FM radio and a telephone. They were both mounted securely to our kitchen wall and information from either one could change a school days outcome.
Apparently, there are a number of modern day superstitions that will help secure the extra sack time and timely delay of overdue homework that a snow day affords a kid these days.
Among the more sensational practices are the placing a spoon under one’s pillow before bedtime, the dumping of a tray of ice cubes into one’s toilet, turning one’s pajamas inside out and opening the kitchen freezer and shouting “SNOW DAY!” into it.
Since snow days haven’t meant much to me since I graduated from high school in 1976 and even my own children somehow never learned of these practices, I can only assume that they are so new as to be much less proven and reliable than the snow dances that my sister and I often employed.
Proven or not, I do know that my parents would probably laugh at me for trying any one of them and add the time tested axiom that always seemed to follow anyone’s youthful folly: “If you put that much energy into actually going to school, you wouldn’t want to miss a day so badly…”
Such party poopers my parents were.
I say good luck to all you spoon hiding, ice cube dumping, pajama reversing freezer shouters. So long as spring arrives early and brings with it warm weather and sunshine, I hope that the winter is just bad enough to give you a day off from school every now and then.
Antrim Dems collect for local pantries
Antrim Dems turned out on November 14 and 15, despite slippery roads and chilly weather, to collect food and money for local pantries. Working at Family Fare in Bellaire and Mancelona and the Village Market in Elk Rapids, the 48 volunteers found the generosity of shoppers to be overwhelming. Deer hunters gave cheerfully. Young people often gave what they could. Parents and grandparents allowed their children to pick out and purchase items from the list of needs. Some people indicated that, having once been recipients of help themselves, they were now able to give something back.
The food collected in Bellaire was picked up by volunteers from the Bellaire Community Pantry. Jane Lund from the Community Cupboard picked up large quantities of food in Elk Rapids and received promises for two frozen turkeys and a processed deer. The food collected in Mancelona was divided between the Mancelona Pantry and the Community Lighthouse Pantry. A total of $3,111 was collected at the three stores and divided among those pantries and Ellsworth Good Samaritan.
Pat Milligan at the Lighthouse Community Pantry says that they would like to do more for their families at the holidays, but their funds are low. The $677.75 check, which they will receive from the Antrim Dems, will purchase a huge quantity of food at the Manna Food Bank. At Ellsworth Good Samaritan they see new people every day as they continue to serve 700 families per month. Their director, Mary Peterson, says that snow days are especially hard on families when there is little food at home.
The Antrim Dem Food Drives were first held in 2006 after a group of area women attended a Poverty Initiative Seminar and learned that over 30% of children in our county qualified for free or reduced lunches at school. In 2014, the ninth year for the Food Drive, volunteers have raised and distributed $9,491 to area pantries as well as quantities of food and personal needs items. Photos and text submitted by Judy King
Dead turkey walking
Have you ever wondered what happens to the White House turkey after it receives a presidential pardon? Most people would like to think that it sent off into the sunset to live a happy and long life. In reality, the pardoned turkey is short-lived, usually dying within a few months of its reprieve. Thanksgiving turkeys are bred for consumption, not for longevity. Dean Norton, director at Mount Vernon, in charge of livestock, says, “The birds are fed in such a way to increase their weight.” [Americans] want a nice big-breasted turkey and so the [birds] are fed a high protein diet and they get quite large. The organs, though, that are in this bird are meant for a smaller bird. They just can’t handle the extra weight, so they end up living not as long [as wild turkeys].” The life expectancy is about 18 weeks, so the pardon really doesn’t extend into happy retirement. Their short lives, according to Keith Williams, a spokesman for the turkey federation, says more about Americans’ taste for turkey and breeding practices than mistreatment or short lives. Source: www.cnn.com, www.nytimes.com, www.huffingtonpost.com
Local gardener Audrey Kaiser, of Kewadin, grew these gigantic Pontiac potatoes! Weighing in at 2 pounds 5 ounces and 2 pounds respectively, these huge spuds are soon to be devoured. Audrey says she didn’t anything special this year and was surprised to grow such enormous potatoes!
On November 21st, the 3rd grade students in the Elk Rapids School District received their own personal dictionary, provided by the American Legion Post 350 of Elk Rapids. This year the students of Ms Veith, Ms. Hall, and Ms. Bruso at Lakeland and Mill Creek Elementary schools received their own personal dictionary, reference, and atlas. These books are theirs to keep forever.
The dictionaries are a part of the larger Dictionary Project, a non-profit organization, based in Charleston, South Carolina. The goal of this program is to assist all students in becoming good writers, active readers, creative thinkers, and resourceful learners by providing them with their own personal dictionary. The dictionaries are a gift to each student to use at school and at home for years to come.
This program fits well with the Children and Youth pillar of the American Legion. It is good to give back to the youth of the community for their support on Veteran’s Day. They are hoping to keep this program ongoing into the future. The funds used were from the support of the community in the Food Raffle sponsored by the American Legion Post and support of the Village Market. The Legion meets at 7 p.m. on the first Tuesday of each month at 410 Bridge St in Elk Rapids. Submitted by Joe Renis, Commander Post 350.
There will not be a Ladies or Men’s Shopping Night in Elk Rapids in December as stated in the November 20 issue of the Elk Rapids News. – Editor
VILLAGE OF ELK RAPIDS