Grindstone Island News - July 17, 1996
Grindstone Island - Even the music on public radio quieted this week; no more martial bands, no more rousing operatics. The phrases lengthened, the volume softened. Fourth of July is over. Grindstone Islanders gathered into families to orient themselves to the warmer, slower days of midsummer.
Up at the crossroads where the church and the hall center the island's community activities, there was activity, but the quiet, steady activity of accomplishment. Jeff Marra's roof is almost finished. On Sunday, the men in the glade by his house stayed "home from church" to help with the last shingling and tar-papering. It will be a great day when the family can move into the larger quarters. Bob Bazinet, across the lane, climbed up to repair the chimney on his own dwelling; John had a good talk with Ada when he returned to her the Thousand Islands Sun article about Amber's prowess as goal keeper in the Potsdam hockey game.
Even the Davison clan occupied only one pew in church. The Tuckers (part of the Davison clan) were celebrating a family birthday and reunion down at the south-shore farmhouse. We are assured that they will be back next Sunday.
John Morrow brought his low-key music-on-disc to the dance on Saturday night, and there, too, the interlude after Fourth of July was a welcome chance to enjoy the friendliness of home folks at the hall. Fog on the river kept him overnight on the island — either at the Carlisle house, or out in a tent with Bubby Bazinet's guests. The weather does wonderful things to slow the pace of life at the River. We watched Weezie Ford's boat ease into McRae Bay just after dark, so we know that the TILT Posh Picnic ended in time for those lovers of Grindstone's "Forever Wildness" to get home before the fog closed them in.
While the men are finishing Jeff’s house, Yuvon Marra, Jeffs mother, is attending to getting the hall's six new tables across the river and into place; the new chairs too. She has already, with the help of Clara, Inna, Brenda, Ada, and probably a dozen more island women, gotten the new pots and pans hung above the sink, and arranged the sponges and scrubbers and soaps in prominent view under the new equipment. It is much easier to have both the hall kitchen and the carriage house kitchen equipped so everything doesn't have to be trundled across the road and back for each celebration. Everyone who comes and works at the Halloween party will appreciate the new convenience.
And Clara Carnegie, who said "that heat (from the stove in the hall kitchen) felt good" at Milton's funeral last winter, thought there will be lots of times even after Halloween when the new pots and pans and tables and chairs will be put to good use. She, by the way, invites all the winter people to celebrate Christmas Eve at her house. Before we came to the river in 1962 and before Dodge Hall was opened as a community meeting place, Clara and Milt used to invite all the islanders to their house to dance. I remember going to visit Clara and the family and hearing her tell us about the fun they used to have.
Yuvon wants me to make special mention of the new vacuum cleaner that Clara Carnegie and Roberta Keszler presented to the hall. All of the summer dancers will appreciate that! Those tromping feet make a lot of dust.
Katie Bogenschutz won the 50-50 on Saturday night, and the gift certificate from the Party Store went to Nugen Brown. Maggie Matthews won it last week, and Maggie knows a good use for the two gifts. Next week The Shadows will provide music.
Saturday, July 20, is the date of the annual turkey dinner at 5: 00 p.m. at the Carriage House. The auction will follow. If you have something for "Doc" to auction off, call him and he will figure out how to get it to the church. Mary made a special plea to the congregation:
Please take pies to the dinner! They are the dessert that people really wish for.
The celebration of communion in church this Sunday was like the song of the whole of Grindstone by Sunday morning. It is a quiet time of remembering, of peace, of gathering into the family, of breaking bread together.
So it is.