Compiled by Debby Carter from the archives of Fresno Flats Research Library and the Sierra Star
50 years ago
☆ An increase of more than 11% in visitor use of Yosemite National Park was recorded in 1966, according to Superintendent John M. Davis. The total count of record breaking numbers was 1,817,000. The busiest days were Memorial Day and July 4 th . A new trend of increased travel to the park after Labor Day developed, which had previously been considered the “off season.”
☆ The California Highway Patrol has assigned a second permanent officer to the Mountain Area. Patrolman Shirley Bollinger of Redwood Creek joins Kenneth (Bucky) Walter in handling the traffic problems in the area.
☆ The Broken Bit advertises Mountain Monday: Broiled brisket of beef with potato dumplings, all you can eat for $1.75.
40 years ago
☆ Winter has officially arrived. The first major storm brought 32 inches of snow to Badger Pass, six inches to Bass Lake, and more than an inch to Oakhurst. Grumbling motorists struggled with tire chains and icy roads. Tom Williams, manager of Badger Pass, said all lifts are in operation and all shops are open. He said 500 skiers were on the slopes Monday.
☆ YHS Superintendent Kenneth Savage warned the school board members of the necessary future costs that will rise due to an ever-increasing student population. This means hiring extra teachers and administrative personnel, and constructing more facilities for next fall. YHS was built for 470 students and has now surpassed that figure to well over 500 students.
☆ Midway Super Market advertises whipping cream at 47 cents for 8 oz., sour cream at 77 cents for 16 oz., Gold Medal flour at 69 cents for a 5 pound bag, pineapples at 79 cents each, pears at 99 cents for five pounds, and Sunkist Navel oranges at 99 cents for eight pounds.
30 years ago
☆ Responses to the Mountain Quotes question, “What is your New Year’s resolution?” included: Eric Jackson, age 3, “I’m going to be a good boy this year.” Allan Davis, “To find a job.” Patricia Edwards, “I try not to make them because I always break them.” Harold Stoneman, “To lose some weight.” Barbara Struckman, “To make a lot of friends, learn how the mountain people live, and give it my all in my business.”
☆ The Oakhurst Community Park bridge is progressing as volunteer PG&E employees worked, along with other volunteers, the past few weekends to get the cross pieces on the bridge. Park Chairman Dave Linn has said the park will hold its grand opening on July 4.
☆ YHS head basketball coach Roger Mercier thinks this year’s boys team is one of Yosemite’s best ever. The Badgers are off to an 8-1 pre-season record and are averaging 64 points per game. They are allowing opponents an average of only 46 points per game. The starting team is: Todd Hood, center; Joe Thacker, guard; Sean Mason, guard; Scott Perkins, forward; and Steve Young, forward. Backing them are: Brian Wade, forward and center; Mike Brossard, forward; Billy McGowan, Guard; Steve Lopez, center; Dane Baldwin, guard; and Mike Young, forward.
20 years ago
☆ Madera County Supervisors delayed a decision about the sale of county-owned property in Ahwahnee, the site of the Ahwahnee Sanitarium, which has been proposed for use as a community college campus. In the special session, which held a standing-room only crowd, The motion to sell was approved by three of the five supervisors, but requires a 4/5ths vote for approval.
☆ Location filming for the Steven Spielberg movie “Mouse Hunt” has begun at The Bonnie B Ranch in North Fork. Actor Nathan Lane is to be featured in the film. Brian Wilkinson of the Madera County Film Commission estimates the project will bring a minimum of $500,000 in direct expenditures in the Mountain Area.
☆ Historic flooding last week caused one death and many other problems throughout Eastern Madera County and the Yosemite area. Damage to Yosemite National Park is so extensive officials have not been able to determine when normal operation can resume. Most of the flood damage in Madera County occurred along the San Joaquin River. In the Mountain Area, losses include a culvert on Road 210 near O’Neals and an approach to a bridge on Road 229A in North Fork.