Thursday, January 22, 2015


By Beatrice M. Hanson

I remember summer holidays as well as weekends brought out the crowds of people who loved to spend the day at the lake.
As early as ten A. M. a line of open trolleys marked “Specials” chartered by one organization or another, swayed their way through South Hadley to meet with the Amherst line. From there they rode through a wooded area where the cars stopped to let the passengers off.
One followed a short, sandy path before coming into an open field, with the clear lake in the background.
Lunch carriers proceeded to the hilly section behind the stand where picnic tables were installed, and here they left their lunch boxes before buying their locker keys.
There were rentals of bathing suits, caps, and water wings. Mr. Aldrich and his assistant were kept busy supplying the demands for ice cream, soda pop, and candy bars.
Later an open dance pavilion was built on the lower end of the lake. Here couples could dance to a good orchestra while watching the moon over the water. Canoes were moored beneath the dance floor, and a small fee a fellow could take his girl for a ride around the lake.

This was an era when there were few cars and this kind of relaxation was enjoyed to the fullest.