Past-E-Mail: Cam Notes - 2007: February: Feb 11-07: Sunday-What'sUP
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Janie T. (Bobbysgirl) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 06:08 am:

Good Morning!

By Paul Oesterle (Paulwebbtroll) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 06:30 am:

Good morning! 7 here.

By timd (Timd) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 07:48 am:

Good morning!

By Brooke (Lovethekeweenaw) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 08:20 am:

Good Morning Everyone!

By Deb S. (Usedtobeayooper) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 08:35 am:

Good morning from MN. It's above zero this morning for the first time in days! We have a temperature of 10. Hooray!

By Grace M Wetton (Gmw) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 08:40 am:

Good Morning Everyone! 10 degrees, cloudy and snowing here in Houghton.
Nice sign of Chassell up above. My daughter and son-in-law live there and they said wouldn't live anywhere else.

By Deb S. (Usedtobeayooper) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 09:00 am:

Happy Birthday, Charlotte!!!!!! Hope you have a great one. Also belated Happy Anniversary. I only knew when your birthday was. Sorry!!!

By Gonna be a Yooper (Joanie) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 09:10 am:

Chassell, the town of the best strawberries that I have ever had in my life! I also have two friends there. Hi to Swamprat and Swampqueen!

Happy Birthday Charlotte!!

Looks like we're in for another snowstorm here in Illinois, yipeeeeeee!

By David Soumis (Davesou) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 09:24 am:

My old home town..and indeed the best berries.
Its too bad most of the farmers have given up, or forced to..whatever the case.

The berry harvest was booming back in the 50s and 60s that I remember...with the trucks delivering to a warehouse/loading dock near to where the present structure is located by the old box mill.

A lot of the area kids used to pick...the farmers would pick them up in their pickups..the entire back of the truck would be full of kids heading to the fields....7 cents a quart or so. Not a bad could pick maybe 50 or 60 quarts a day.

By Tom Karjala (Tom) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 09:56 am:

7 cents a quart for picking strawberries? That is pretty darn good compared to the 7 - 10 cents a bushel picking potatoes back in the late 1940s and early 1950s. Trucks used come from various potato farmers to Hancock (I assume Houghton, too) and drive the people to the farm. Pick all day and then drive you home. Adults and kids. Schools weren't fond of kids dropping out for almost two weeks to pick spuds.
Tried to stop the under 16 aged kids from dong that.
We did it anyway. And, somehow made it through school.

By Laurie B. (Ratherberiding) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 10:09 am:

I picked strawberries for 7 cents a quart too at a farm up from Tamarack Hill. I HATED it!! I swore I would never do it again, but I did a few years later and got 10 cents then, different farm. I think I ate more than I picked.

By Gonna be a Yooper (Joanie) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 10:30 am:

That's funny Laurie! Same goes for picking berries, there's no way you can pick and not give the berries a little (in my case, a lot), taste test!

Every time we go to Chassell I think of the song; "Strawberry Fields Forever"!

By Mary Drew at Pasty Central (Mdrew) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 11:39 am:

I was one of those kids in the back of an open pickup truck with wooden sides, going all the way from Lake Linden to Chassell to pick those berries. Don't forget, it was pretty cold on that early morning ride. Can you imagine now-a-days trying to get away with hauling a pick-up load of kids to the berry farm like that? YIKES!

It seems to me we only got 5 a quart. Maybe they paid us less because they had to use so much gas to come get us? :->
Berry picking lasted less than a week for me, since those were the days before they had a Saturday night Mass for us Catholics and the berry farmer said if we couldn't pick on Sunday morning, then we couldn't pick at all. That ended my berry picking career!!
P.S. I ate my share of those juicy berries too!

By Brooke (Lovethekeweenaw) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 12:08 pm:

We picked Strawberries for my Grandparents, they only had a few rows. But it was hot and the sand fleas were horrible! We got the bright idea to lay down in dirt between the rows when Grandpa was rotatilling and throw the bad ones at him. Took him a minute to figure out what was going on, I think the giggling was a hint. Years later when he had cancer him and my Grandma were laughing about that.

By Gonna be a Yooper (Joanie) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 12:32 pm:

These strawberry stories are getting "berry" funny! Hope they don't wind up in a "jam"!

By Marianne Y (Marianne) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 01:15 pm:

Good Afternoon, you all! I thought I had already posted that, but I must have closed the window instead of finishing the post. Oh well, better late that never.

We have one more night of low temps above 10, and then it's back to low single digits & subzero. Since this is a three-day weekend off school for my two younger sons, and since they both have bad colds, one of whom had his turn into a sinus infection, I am thankful for the warmup, albeit, brief.

By Marianne Y (Marianne) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 01:17 pm:

The other part that was in my original post, that I guess I accidentally deleted, was to tell Joanie that I enjoy her puns & jokes.

By Marianne Y (Marianne) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 01:32 pm:

For those of you who picked strawberries for a few pennies a quart, it reminds me of when I was in school, & we went to Iowa every summer. I got stuck doing back-breaking labor for my uncle, pulling weeds within the soy bean rows (they called it walking the beans, because we had to walk the whole way). I was paid a whopping $1/hour, for my time (sometimes 10 hours a day), the blisters on my hands, the sunburn, etc. (They used what were called cultivators, pulled by big tractors, to pull up the weeds between the rows, but that did not work within rows, or you would end up plowing up the whole crop.)

Illegal immigrants don't even do that hard farm labor these days, much less young kids (I think I did that from about ages 9 to 11). After that, I would not do it anymore. It just was not worth the bad blisters & bad sunburns that I got. They use selective weed killers, etc., now.

By kosk in Toronto (Koskintoronto) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 01:50 pm:

I was one of those kids riding on the back of a pickup truck to
pick berries in Chassell along with a batch of cousins. The
going rate was 7 cents a quart when I picked.

I remember sitting around with my cousins and picking out
clothes from the Montgomery Ward's catalog once we received
our pay.

Deb--I ate a lot of those berries too--in fact I once developed a
rash on my cheeks in the shape of strawberries from eating too
many. You're right, the ride was often cold, wet (dew?) and the
odd fight would break out in the back of the truck as kids
jostled for space.

By kosk in Toronto (Koskintoronto) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 01:54 pm:

Oops--that wasn't Deb who talked about eating the berries. It was
Ratherberiding back from the West, Mary and Joanie who were
grazing in the strawberry field.

By David Soumis (Davesou) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 01:55 pm:

Those were the days , weren't they :)
I remember walking to school in the freezing morning, sometimes -20-50 windchills...your spit would freeze before it hit the ground...the snow popped and crunched under your feet. Snownbanks were 10 feet high...even the little red balls on the end of the car antennas couldn't be seen.

Some days its was snowing so hard you could hardly see the streets...and the streets were packed ice a foot thick with sand on top each day.

those were the days :)

By David Soumis (Davesou) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 01:58 pm:

they grow a lot of strawberries down here in milk and cheese land, but they don't taste anywhere near as good as those Chassell berrirs. It has to do with the soil. It may be from oall the cow manure they use for fertilizer down here...stanky stuff....would make you think twice about eating anything out of those fields...

Illinois has the best sweet corn.

By Mary Drew at Pasty Central (Mdrew) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 04:11 pm:

Pictures still needed!!
With the Guest Gallery unavailable during the upgrade, I'm hoping some of you out there will email me if you might have a few pictures of the Snow Statues to share. You can send pictures to me at: for your help! :->

By Gonna be a Yooper (Joanie) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 04:25 pm:

Marianne, I "walked" the bean rows too! My boys were little and I wanted to earn some "milk money". It was hot, humid, buggy, back-breaking and just plain miserable. The cockleburs always stuck to my gloves and every time you looked up to see if you were near the end of the row, it seemed to appear as if it was miles away. The things we had to do just to survive!

By Marianne Y (Marianne) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 05:39 pm:

Davesou, I think that Iowa grows the best sweet corn, at least the best corn that I have ever eaten in my life, was grown in my cousin's garden in northwest Iowa. It was picked that morning, and cooked late that afternoon, with a fair amount of milk, of all things, added to the water. I've never had corn, either before or since, that could touch that corn. :-)

We have some decent fresh sweet corn grown here in mid-Michigan during the summer, but it can't touch the Iowa corn. Part of it may be the really fertile black soil in Iowa, and part may be the variety of corn that my cousin grew. (He has access to some of the experimental varieties of corn, since he is a farmer & buys large quantities of various seed types.)

By Charlotte, Mishawaka, IN (Charlotte61) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 06:48 pm:

Deb, Joanie, and Mikie---Thanks for the birthday and anniversary wishes. Had a great party at school Friday for my birthday. My boss invited the whole staff for a potluck lunch. If they didn't want to bring food they could donate to my son's (Andy-Deceased) scholarship fund for students of Mishawaka High School. Well, we had lots of food and $155.00 for the scholarship fund. What a day. Now I'm finished celebrating for a year. Didn't plan very well when we chose a wedding date. Anniversary, birthday, and Valentine's Day all in 6 days.

By Fran in GA (Francesinga) on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 10:48 pm:

Dollar Bay kids rode with Bill Niemala up to his farm on the hill. We went really early. He let us quit after lunch when it got too hot. The best picker that I heard of was Mrs Olson(Irene) She picked very fast. Being an adult she probably didn't spend so much time eating them.

By kosk in Toronto (Koskintoronto) on Monday, February 12, 2007 - 07:14 am:


I bet you're right about that. My father, who is the world's best
berry picker (and this is not just my biased opinion...others share
it), never eats while he is picking or cleaning his berries.

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