View from the Lake-
Another summer at the lake is ending

This article submitted by Linda Lorentzen on 08/30/00.

As we toured the lake this past weekend, the reality of the summer season coming to a close hit home. The leaves on some of the trees have already begun to turn color and a few sprigs of the tell- tale fall red sumac were visible. Even the amount of boat traffic was significantly less than most summer weekends. In our mail this past week appeared all the going back to school information, much to the dismay of my kids. And so, the last column of the summer must be written. Over the years many people have had to deal with summer coming to an end.

In the Aug. 11, 1898, issue of the New Paynesville Press: "Mr. and Mrs. E. O. Phipps have broken camp at the lake and moved into town."

"John Bradford and wife of Minneapolis, who have been enjoying a vacation at the old landing, broke camp the first of the week and returned to the city," appeared in the Aug. 25, 1904, issue.

In the issue of Sept. 22, 1904: "A. F. Knebel and family moved into town Wednesday from their summer home at Koronis."

"Mrs. W. I. Fisher returned to her home in Minneapolis today after spending the summer at the lake. She was accompanied by the Misses Grace Kelm and Mittie Hamon who will attend the Calhoun Secretarial School this winter. The former will be employed at the Fisher home while attending," was reported in the Aug. 26, 1926, Paynesville Press.

And while I hate to think of snow and ice, since I am rarely able to write about those aspects of the weather in a summer column, I'd like to share some news articles about winter from the past.

In March 1909, ice races were held on Lake Koronis. Two hundred spectators watched horsemen racing on Koronis' ice. "Owing to the warm weather the track was very soft and the horses had to wade through about two inches of slush, but in spite of this handicap the time of the last heat was caught at 1:10. Owing to the poor condition of the track only two heats were run, the Phipps horse capturing both of them, while Manz came in second, Kennedy third, and Hanson fourth. The second heat resulted, Phipps first, Hanson second, Manz third, and Kennedy fourth," as reported in the March 25th issue of The Paynesville Press.

Heavy snow covered the area in 1916 causing problems for the rural mail carrier on route five. " (He) has been unable to go his entire route since Tuesday of last week. First the snow blockaded the road near the lake, so badly he could not get through with a buggy. Then Wednesday night the bridge near S. R. Huff's washed entirely out so that the west part of the route is cut off at present, except when someone meets the carrier at Wm. Gates'corner," was reported in the Koronis "Our Own Correspondent" column in the April 6, 1916, issue.

Earlier that same year, in February, the weight of the snow on the ice caused problems for people needing to cross Lake Koronis. "The snow is so heavy on the ice that the ice is weighing down until water is oozing thru the cracks and under the snow. In places horses break through the wet snow. Last Friday G. O. Voss was crossing with a load of wheat and broke thru one of these soft places and the load was stuck so bad the team could not pull it out and he had to unload on the ice and with help was pulled out. It is not considered dangerous on the ice only somewhat inconvenient when traveling with heavy loads."

Luckily, we have a few more months before winter weather. As we end this Koronis summer, I am reminded of the words of George Stephens, founder of the New Paynesville Press, "We went into camp at the southern end of the lake where the waves whispered the million- year-old story, and mirrored back the flash of star and ardent kiss of the sun." I will keep the memory of the million-year-old Koronis story as I look forward to next summer's view from the lake.

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