It proved to be a very popular event as "large crowds of children" gathered at the Legion Hall an hour before the convoy to the popular swimming area, established by George Bucciarelli, was scheduled to depart
"Being the last half day of summer freedom before settling down to the srious business of school, the picnic was popular. Promptly at 1:30 p.m., the kiddies were loaded in to trucks and cars and transported to Bucciarelli's lake where all sorts of fun had been arranged," the paper reported.
The morning had been "cloudy and gloomy" but "Old Sun put in an appearance about noon and the afternoon was bright and sunny."
"Water sports were held under supervision and the kiddies had a wonderful time. Hot dogs, candy and ice cream were provided to wind up the afternoon and they were returned to town in time for supper."
After the Chapleau boys returned home from serving in Canada's armed forces in World War II, they were very actively involved in community life.
In fact, in 1947, J.M. Shoup, the long time principal of Chapleau Public School, who had served in both World War I and II, in a speech to the Legion members told them they had a "duty to serve", and they did. Mr. Shoup was president of Branch 5 in 1947.
The picnic is just one example of many where the branch was either organizing an activity, or its members were involved.
Moving on to some other highlights from the Sept. 7, 1947, edition, Harvey Fortunato, the owner of Queens Taxi announced that his new headquarters was located next to the Regent Theatre. He would also have one car stationed at the Queens Hotel at all times for the convenience of the hotel patrons. (The Queens Hotel later became the Sportsman). He promised quick courteous service. Phone number was 335.
The Sun Life Assurance Co. announced that Albert Evans its Chapleau district representative who had been with the company since 1942, had won membership each year in the company's Leader Production Club. His 1947 qualification was substantially higher than ever before and established him as one of the leading life underwriters of Northern Ontario, and first in the North Bay territory, which included Chapleau.
|Later Fitch's now site of Pentecostal Church|
Gladys Fitch, the proprietor of Fitch's Quick Lunch said, "Clean home cooked meals at reasonable prices with courteous service. Fish and Chips every Friday -- to take out 30 cents per order --- yes, that's not a typo -- 30 cents per order.
When I was working as a newspaper reporter in the 1960s, in those years when there was great passenger train service on the CPR main line through Chapleau, I met several people, who had shopped at Fitch's.
But, P.V. Wade, the legendary managing editor of the Star-Phoenix in Saskatoon told me when I was working there that while travelling through Chapleau on a troop train during World War II, the troops would disembark and march over the old overhead bridge.
Their destination -- the liquor store on main street. Certain soldiers would be permitted to break ranks and go shopping. Mr. Wade had served as a captain in the Canadian Army, and was also assigned to the staff of General Dwight Eisenhower, as Canadian press attache, but he remembered Chapleau -- the bridge and the liquor store.
The Chapleau Post also reported that the forest fire situation was back to normal again after a month of hot dry weather and numerous bush blazes.
And no. I don't recall if I attended the "Kiddies Picnic" in 1947. Most likely I did. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org