My Hometown Centennial Jam August 5, 2012
By Norm Richards
After playing to the largest audience Symbols of Sound ever played the previous night, we did the five dollar Jam on Sunday. But by then, I wanted to visit more. Although, I enjoyed seeing Heather (Russick) Wenger get up and sing with Garry's accompaniment. I wanted to visit and jam in what I could. Both Perry Nicol and Donna Bachnick said they would be at the airport party happening at the same time, so I went. I was craving a forum where people would sum up their lives since we were teens. Where would I find that? I asked myself.
On arrival, there was Donna Bachnick–St Godard now and Jan Marin-McDonald who both lost their husbands in the recent past. Their hubbies were friends. In fact, Bill stayed at my house for part of nineteen sixty seven and sixty eight after his move from Flin Flon. In the summer of sixty seven, Bill, Bob Ford, Mike Dickey and I lived in a one room apartment in the Lamb block. It was a bit cramped but took on the feel of a frat house. We needed to be away from parents and closer to girls. Bill had a cool blue Chevy convertible that year and we drifted from Flin Flon to The Pas doing sports, gigs for me and chasing girls.
I knew John St Godard since we were kids. I enjoyed talking with these two women near the lake this sunny afternoon. I shared some family photos I brought along with me. We took photos together and embraced warmly. It was sure nice to meet up with them again. Man, Gody Streit hadn't changed a bit. But, I recalled him as larger in stature. He was there tending bar. “Moon!” he said right out. I asked him not to repeat the nickname since I always despised its origin. His brother Abby said hi. He grew up. Our school and air cadet photos today reveal his younger face. We talked. Al Lagimodiere had the same eyes under an older face but I didn't remember how short he was. Maybe I was always taller. I really enjoyed an exchange with Sandra Hayes-Gardiner who put out a book in conjunction with the Centennial. I didn't do that but I asked the committee if I could sell my book at the arena. I was turned away without even explaining my book fits the event and town history. I noticed later they let their own hand-picked merchants in to sell Centennial products. The only consolation to me was they didn't seem to have a run on their products. I got to promote my book by word of mouth. It felt honest, not crass. I left the airport gathering feeling a little more whole for the experience but still suffering from history lost. I returned to the arena in town where volunteers, our band and committee staff had a farewell gathering. It was nice. The balance of my time was spent with family.