Remember When? (May 15)

A look back at what happened in the valley this week over the past 50 years

2009 — Children and their parents turned out to the Invermere Public Library to read and make Mother’s Day cards

2009 — Children and their parents turned out to the Invermere Public Library to read and make Mother’s Day cards

10 years ago (2003): Alpine Canada was eyeing Panorama Mountain Village as a national alpine ski training centre. In a letter to the District of Invermere (DOI), Alpine Canada president Ken Read stated, “Alpine Canada is excited about the opportunities this centre could provide for the development of our athletes… we also see tremendous opportunity for Invermere and the East Kootenay region.” Then-DOI councillor Gerry Taft said he expected the Farnham Glacier aspect of the proposal could result in a conflicting land use issue with Jumbo Glacier Alpine Resort applicants.

15 years ago (1998): A Shuswap First Nation proposal for a $4 million destination casino on its land at the Invermere crossroads was denied by the provincial government. “The reason it didn’t go ahead is it didn’t have the backing of the local community through the locally elected officials. People didn’t want it, by and large,” said then Columbia River-Revelstoke MLA Jim Doyle. The casino would have had 100 slot machines and 10 gaming tables in the first phase of development, with a maximum build-out of 300 machines and 30 tables along with other amenities including a hotel, family entertainment centre, convention centre, bar and restaurant.

20 years ago (1993): Invermere Forest District battled its first big fire of the season when about 12 hectares north of Horsethief Creek was set ablaze. Some 1,200 gallons of fire retardant was dumped onto the fire by an air group consisting of a spotter plane and three air tankers, while a 10- to 12-man IFD crew fought the blaze on the ground.

30 years ago (1983): Local fishermen were informed that Whitetail Lake had been designated as a spawning area for the Girard strain of Rainbow Trout, and that a size limit had been imposed on any Girard trout caught by anglers because of the late maturity of this strain of fish. According to a fisheries biologist, the objective for the lake was to support angling but to keep the area as a wilderness spot rather than a destination lake like Whiteswan and Premier.

35 years ago (1978): Over 40 floats participated in the Radium Days Parade, billed as the “Biggest Little Parade in North America”. Hundreds of cheering spectators lined the parade route, and the Cranbrook Girls’ Band set the pace with lively marching music. The parade kicked off two days of activities that features Ukrainian dancers, a logging competition, a pancake breakfast and boat races. “It just shows what a community can do when everyone gets together and all pull in the same direction,” one onlooker commented.

40 years ago (1973): The Windermere 4-H Beef Club achieved honours at the first annual Cranbrook and District 4-H Rally held at the Fort Steele Historical Park. Over 150 4-H members, leaders and parents attended.

50 years ago (1963): An all-time record was set for Victoria Day weekend attendance when close to 10,000 people used the Radium Hot Springs aquacourt during the three-day holiday. Peak day was Sunday when 4,319 people swam in the pools — just three short of the all-time July 1 weekend record for the same day in 1962. Registration at the Western Gateway to Kootenay National Park at Radium also broke records with 6,042 vehicles with 20,227 passengers entering the park. Most of the visitors were from Calgary and Edmonton.