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A Virtual Sampler of American Small Town Life


As Sumas Turns --

Barbara Skinner, Brave Woman

globe.gif (1927 bytes)IT MAY HAVE been a first of some kind when we took our personal computer into Ted Iverson Auto Body for some work recently. Ted is of course quite proficient on a PC, but he was not accustomed to doing body work on them.

Our problem was that we had to replace the power source in our 386SX, and the manufacturer, Zeos, had cleverly contrived to bury the power lead to the mother board under the power supply itself and a structural rail.

Faced with having to pull the mother board, I took the machine into Ted and asked him if he could cut away a portion of the steel rail. Ted nodded, and disappeared into the shop. When he returned he had a small but efficient looking device called an air saw.

"You realize there will be a little metal dust?" he asked as he touched the blade to the computer chassis. We nodded, and just like that -- braap, braap, braaaap -- he made the rearrangements I requested.

Back at the office, the machine went together smoothly. The sweetest part was the long silence on the phone when I told Zeos tech support that I had the machine worked on at the local auto body shop.

from the October 1992 Sumas Astonisher

* * *

Everson librarian Barbara Skinner is a brave women. On Sept. 14 she not only tolerated but actually encouraged a convocation of excited dogs, nervous cats, miscellaneous goats, rabbits, a snapping turtle in an aquarium in a baby stroller, and dressed up kids for the annual Everson Library Pet Parade. The procession marched from the library to City Park, where Kathy Bronkema used her years of 4-11 training to interview each pet owner, including the keepers of several dozen stuffed creatures.

The many contestants included Hilary Hemmann with her stuffed bunny and Holly Hemmann with her hamster, who was awarded a certificate for "quietest pet." Ryland Temperio's puppy, Grover, was honored as the smallest dog. The biggest was a 220-pound English mastiff. Ryland's sister Natalia brought one of her collection of horse models. Jesse Johns brought a hermit crab that prudently stayed in its shell. Katie Penfield, dressed as a snake charmer complete with jeweled slippers, handled her garter snake with aplomb.

from the October 1991 Sumas Astonisher

* * *

One of Sumas's most venerable institutions, the Double A Club, called it quits Aug. 30, with an open house for present and former members at the home of Diana Richmond. The five remaining members voted this summer to disband the Double A Club after 69 years.

The AAers are not to be confused with the better known self-help organization with the same initials. Their AA came first, and it stood for "Amateur Amusers," a name which was kept secret to all outsiders until now.

The club was founded in 1923 by Naomi Nugent and 11 other charter members from the Sumas area. "Women at that time were not as busy as we are now," said Frances Baker, one of five remaining members.

During the next 69 years, more than 80 local women have been members. "You had really arrived when you were asked to join," said Baker. "Every member was a soloist in her own right."

Members performed at each meeting, but more than entertainment was required. Each meeting included a study paper on a topic of the day. "But a lot of programs were just crazy fun," said LaVoun Hoffman, who arrived in Sumas in 1943 and was asked to join a couple of years later. Hoffman, Baker, Richmond, Jo Young, and Eleanor Humphreys were the last active members.

The club's scrap book and minutes, maintained by Hoffman, will be preserved as a record of members' accomplishments, and of a time when women who wanted more education and entertainment had to make their own.

from the September 1992 Sumas Astonisher


Avelino Caņizares

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149 Years of El Pelota, 1866-2015

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