Back in Time

Historical Perspective

55 YEARS AGO:

The Birch Island Women’s Institute Variety show was a success financially as well as entertaining. The little Alice Blue Gown girls sang and danced their way into spontaneous popularity. The clock was turned back to the Nineties in the number presented bu Joy Lee Ann and Carol Gregory, accompanied by Wilfred and Bert Rothwell. The first Birch Island Scouts, Cubs and Brownies participated in the show.

50 YEARS AGO:

A report that a new ambulance had been ordered to replace the current one noted the vehicle would be the type recommended by the St. John Ambulance. Upon delivery, the red light, siren and other fixtures would be transferred to it as well as some insulation and inside finishing added before the vehicle would be ready for the road.

45 YEARS AGO:

Senior representatives from the Department of Municipal Affairs were on hand at the Clearwater Business Association meeting to explain what incorporation would mean to Clearwater. John Callam, senior administrative officer, stressed he wasn’t selling incorporation, incorporation of an area should be considered with council representing the local people.

40 YEARS AGO:

A 21-year-old White Rock Man was said to have died following a collision of his vehicle and a trailer truck loaded with hay. Conditions were sloppy following a steady fall of wet snow, which began in the early morning. The accident, which took place on Highway 5 by Roundtop apparently occurred when the driver of the small car lost control in slush and turned round, clipping the truck which had tried to avoid him.

The Chamber of Commerce auction attracted a steady stream of buyers for the many pieces of merchandise. A total of $1,758 was raised to assist operation of the tourist booth that summer.

35 YEARS AGO:

The Wells Gray Ski Marathon was an unqualified success. This was the verdict of the spectators, the visiting officials, and most important of all, the participants. For the event, 138 people registered and most came away with nothing but praise for the tight organization, the course layout, the setting and the friendly spirit of those who were there.

Stan Saari of the Clearwater Sno-Drifters warned snowmobilers planning outings on local mountains that pleasant spring rides can easily turn into disaster unless riders are aware that fluctuating temperatures can result in the possibility of an avalanche being extremely high. Most snowmobilers, according to Sarri, follow the “up and down by noon” rule as afternoon sun rapidly warms up the mountain slopes.

30 YEARS AGO:

You shouldn’t believe everything chemical companies tell you seemed to be the message brought by Oregon environmentalist Paul Merrell to a meeting in Clearwater. The gathering was sponsored by Yellowhead Ecological Association and was on the dangers of introducing herbicides to the forest. In fact, according to Merrell, you shouldn’t believe anything chemical companies say about the safety and effects of their products.

Five Physics 11 students from Clearwater Secondary School participated in the UBC Physics Olympics in Vancouver. “We did the best we have ever done,” science teacher Lorne Wright said. There were 56 teams taking part from across B.C. The local crew finished fourth in one of the seven events required, but were disqualified because one judge did not like the design they used. Team members were Dawn Brown, Ian MacKenzie, Paul McKenzie, Debby Scott and Ian Howatt.

25 YEARS AGO:

There would be no Volunteer Provincial Emergency Program Area Coordinators in the North Thompson Valley. Despite a plea directly to Attorney General Colin Gableman by the directors of the TNRD, the contracts of Bill Mattenley, Area Coordinator for Clearwater and area, and Judy Vosper, Area Coordinator for Barriere and area, will not be renewed when they expire on March 31. In a letter dated Feb. 28, the Board of Directors of the TNRD “strongly encourages the Minister to continue to maintain the PEP program volunteer coordinators along with payment of honorariums instead of ending all current contracts effective April 1, 1995.”

20 YEARS AGO:

Implementation of a 911 emergency telephone service for the Thompson-Nicola Regional District would be delayed and would cost somewhat more than planned. That was according to a report from chief administrative officer John Smith, delivered to the TNRD board of directors. The 911 system, originally time-lined for August of 2000, was pushed back to January or February of 2001. The delay was the result of a recommendation from the TNRD’s 911 consultants that all fire departments in the regional district be enabled to participate from the outset.

15 YEARS AGO:

The old Birch Island bridge would not be closed while the new one was being built, MLA Kevin Krueger announced. “I can now confirm that we will build the new bridge parallel to the existing one, so the existing bridge could stay open to passenger vehicle traffic during construction,” he said. He added the government listened to the concerns of residents and altered its original concept of demolishing the existing bridge and building a new structure in its place.

10 YEARS AGO:

RCMP executed a search warrant on a property just off Highway 5 east of Clearwater and seized more than 2,400 marijuana plants. In addition to the marijuana grow operation police located a hydro bypass, which meant those responsible for the grow operation were stealing power. The rural property had two outbuildings that contained marijuana grow operations.

5 YEARS AGO: What is a Global Geopark? Should the communities from Sun Peaks to McBride seek to get that international status for the area? Those were just a few of the questions that a series of workshops held by the global Geopark steering committee sought to answer. The workshops were held in Chu Chua and Clearwater as well as Valemount and McBride. Although there were 111 members of the Global Network of National Geoparks, only two were in North America. The proposed Wells Gray Geopark would have the volcanoes of Wells Gray Park and area as its centerpiece.

1 YEAR AGO:

An unexpected brush fire took residents by surprise in the small community of Louis Creek. The winter brush fire started on a private property at the base of a hillside below a mobile home park just off the Yellowhead Highway, and about seven kilometres south of Barriere. Barriere Fire Department was quickly on scene, but did have some difficulty getting to the fire due to the steepness and inaccessibility of the terrain.

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