The Page

We mentioned last week about the box of historical Slave Lake stuff that came our way (temporarily). Lots of newspaper clippings from the 1960s and 70s, the local calendar illustrated by Bob Harrold, Walter Pendle’s book of poetry and stories and… unexpectedly, a log book for the Slave Lake volunteer fire department, briefly listing the fire calls from 1965 through 67. In the first nine months of 1965 only two calls were recorded (possibly after the fact). In January there was a fire at the Slave River Motel, apparently affecting 12 units. Sometime that summer a fire at the Slave Lake Hotel caused “no great damage.”
Some of the items are amusing.
Dec. 8, 1965, 7:30 p.m. “Sims’ residence – piece of toast on fire.”
Dec. 23, 1965, 8:30 p.m. “False alarm – Firemen’s Ball. Celebrating new fire engine.”
Lots of the calls were to fires caused by oil stoves in bunkhouses. Two of those, about a year apart, were at Swidley Construction. “Gutted,” was the comment in the log book.
The final entry, from Jan. 6, 1968 was something to do with Tony Lestar’s propane tank.
Whose notebook it was isn’t clear. Pat Foley is listed as the fire chief on the first page. But the book came from the Stella Boisvert estate, so it might have been Leo Boisvert’s. He was the mayor at the time and also on the fire department. The ‘Fire Brigade’ is listed in a separate sheet, with 19 names and their respective duties. Four of them (including Leo) were responsible for ‘Furniture removal and care.’ (???)
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Look for a High Prairie School Division bus in the Walmart parking lot again Aug 8 – 10. It’s a promotional effort (as reported in last week’s Leader), advertising the need for bus drivers. Those dates are different than the ones originally announced; however, the August dates didn’t appear in the story.
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You’ve noticed our ‘Avid Readers’ series shaping up in recent editions of The Leader. You may also have noticed not a single female reader has appeared. No, we are not ignoring them. So far two have been asked and have declined. Most of the recommendations we’ve received have, it’s true, been gentlemen. Ladies? Let’s hear from you! We know you’re out there!
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A lot of people commented positively on the minor baseball provincial championship tournament held at Sinclair Fields on the July 21 weekend. One guy, for example, was saying it was the nicest facility of any he’s been to this summer to watch his grandson play ball. The grounds crew was active and effective (parent volunteers). The scoreboards are a nice touch.
And let’s not forget the overall design, with one central paved area serving three diamonds. This as far as we know was not the way it was envisioned by the architect, back in 2012 or thereabouts. Instead it was proposed by the local company that ended up building it. It seems to be working well and on top of everything, baseball is still a great old game!
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Former Slave Lake RCMP Staff/Sgt. Chris Murphy and his family were in town for a few days recently on vacation. They were enjoying the Mosquito provincial ball tournament before heading over to Lac La Biche to visit family. Chris said things are going well in Hinton and the family is settling in there. He’s plenty busy at work, of course and his wife Paula has found teaching work.
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We might be speaking too soon, based on too little information, but from what we’ve seen this could be a fine year for saskatoons and blueberries. (Don’t tell anyone!)
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The osprey nest atop one of the communication towers on the cemetery hill (or water reservoir hill, or rabbit hill, if you prefer) in Slave Lake is a treat. The parent birds come and go and the little ones last week were making loud noises. Too bad you can’t see them, but climbing that tower for a closer look is not recommended.
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Spotted buying a flat of suds at Dog Island Brewing the other day: none other than Peace River-Westlock Member of Parliament Arnold Viersen.
“I lost a bet,” he said, by way of explanation.
Good for him for supporting a local business.
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