July 6, 1911. It’s hot. It’s humid. It’s New York. Hygiene is sorely lacking. There’s no chilled Coke. No frosty A&W. No Slurpees available. So why don’t we stick some blocks of ice on the hot asphalt of a dirty city street and invite some unvaccinated urchins to come lick it? It’s not like it’s a bat or anything.
Most of us don’t immediately associate beaches with the city of Cleveland. In fact, I am so full of ignorance about the city, that other than it existing inside of Ohio, I only know that Drew Carey was born there. I also know he was a Marine, and that his middle name is Allison, so that shows how much MORE I know about Drew than his birthplace. So if you’re like me, you will be gobsmacked to learn that they put some sand along the edge of Lake Erie and called it a beach. No sharks? No salt water to sting your eyes? Sounds nifty!
I hear they have freshwater jellyfish, however, but not big enough to give you a painful sting that lasts for two weeks with shooting bolts of pain down your leg, like the fun Gulf of Mexico offers. Cleveland’s Edgewater Beach website says one can enjoy 2400 feet of beach and 1000 feet of swimming access. Let’s go! Any readers done some swimming this summer, either alone or completely disobeying all the laws and engaging with friends and family? I surely have not.
The pages of my many 1950s Life magazines are so brittle that they crumble into pieces as I gently turn them. In an effort to preserve their fun images for posterity, I offer you scenes from a mischievous boys’ camp from summer 1954.
Those boys were scoundrels! What nowadays could be construed as grounds for a lawsuit was all in good fun. I’m sure glad I was never the victim of a watery dawn raid.
Billy carts…not to be confused with Billy Carter.