The Daily Star
Step Back in Time features news items from The Daily Star 25 and 50 years ago.
25 years ago
Nov. 9, 1988
NORWICH — Norwich merchants wanted to start the Christmas shopping season earlier this year, but the Common Council stymied their efforts Monday night.
The Common Council turned down a merchants’ association request for free parking from now until Christmas and agreed to allow free downtown parking only from the day after Thanksgiving until Christmas.
Merchants also put Christmas decorations on their store fronts Monday, more than two weeks before the traditional start of the Christmas shopping season.
Police Chief Gary Follett got the request Monday afternoon from Patrick McNeil, head of the merchants’ association. For the last two years, merchants have asked for free parking from the day after Thanksgiving. This year, they wanted it earlier, but offered no reason, Follett said.
Aldermen said they might have approved the request if it came with a good reason. The vote was 5-1 in favor of starting free parking after Thanksgiving.
Follett said the city didn’t lose much parking meter revenue the last two years on the deal because the free parking wasn’t advertised and people put money in the meters anyway.
Mayor Kermit C. Jones said the meters help to keep people from parking in prime downtown spots for the whole day.
50 years ago
Nov. 9, 1963
UNADILLA — The Fellowship Baptist Lighthouse Church located on the covered bridge road in Unadilla will open officially at ceremonies to be held at 7:30 p.m. Sunday, the Rev. Robert J. Vrzal said Friday.
The church which will seat about 150 persons comfortably has been constructed by the parishioners themselves from the Rockroyal Methodist Church in Rockroyal and also an old church which had been closed in Oxford.
Some of the materials are new, but the pews came from the above named sources: stained glass windows came from the Cannonsville Church, which has since been destroyed and an Estes organ which originates from Oxford.
Mr. Vrzal also proudly announced that an old piano had also been salvaged from Cannonsville, before the village became “ghostly” last fall.
In October, some of the male parishioners went to Rockroyal where they razed the Methodist church and used some timbers, which were transported to the new site by Donald Earle, who is also doing all of the electrical work himself.
Late last summer, a logging crew went to Wells Bridge and went into the woods where they cut large pine and hemlock trees. They sent the trees to the sawmills where they were processed for subflooring and framing.
The women of the parish, Mr. Vrzal said, have also contributed several hours to the construction of the church. They have done the work on the pews and on the piano. The pews were sanded, painted with flat white paint, and completely refinished to where they now look “like new.”