13 July 1911
Hudson's Bay Picnic at Banff
Yesterday Was a Very Enjoyable Affair
The Hudson's Bay company held their second annual picnic Banff yesterday in ideal weather. Not a cloud darkened the sky from sunrise to sunset, the air was cool all day, and the picnickers lived out of doors all the time without the slightest discomfort.
This year the guests numbered about 100, or an increase of about 50 on last year's total. The special chartered by the company left Calgary at 8 sharp and reached Banff after a journey of a little over two hours on the train. George -- the ubiquitous boy, the latest recruit to the Hudson's Bay ranks and his friend, the faithful scout, had most of the fun. From somewhere they produced every tune making machine that was ever invented and entertained the company with a selection of popular airs.
Banff Reached in Two Hours.
Safely landed at Banff each member of the company was free to do what he or she desired. In the arrangements the greatest freedom was extended to every guest, and to every taste. They might row on the river, bath in the pools, play football, take a course of horsemanship up Tunnel mountain, or the most ambitious might, as will be related hereafter, assay the dizzy slopes of Sulphur mountain. The guests might even fall in love or go fishing. Each man, woman and child was master of him or herself, and the day with all its possibilities was theirs.
As might have been expected, the sulphur baths were first visited, and a dip in the pungent and healthful water was generally indulged in. The youngsters bobbed in and out of the pools like eels, the girls grouped themselves in artistic bunches up to their necks in the medicinal mud, the rarer spirits negotiated the high dive and the mature, the obese and the bald panted in solemn procession up and down the enclosure. Before completing this picture of aquatic revelry, it is only fair to say that some of the members of the party engaged in a competition of diving for coins and doorknobs. This sport produced one of the most exhilarating moments of the day.
After Lunch, Mountaineering
After lunch the guests once more set forth on their chosen excursion, two of the most ambitious, as we have said, electing alpine climbing as the only form of exercise that would suitable demonstrate their athletic prowess. The two gentlemen decided to climb the Sulphur mountain, and from that sublime height to gaze over the surrounding country as Moses gazed from Pisgah over the land of Canaan. Much to the surprise of their friends this feat was accomplished, and at the dinner table later in the evening the story of conquest was told with a beautiful and becoming modesty.
Of course the ascent of these pedestrians had nothing to do with an ascent of the same mountain on ponies, accomplished by Messrs. Simpson, (2), Harvey, Benson, Vair, Potter, Jago and McLachlin. These gentlemen ascended the mountain all right, but their prowess is not in the same boat with the athletic pair.
Some Impromptu Sports
Late in the afternoon some impromptu sports were indulged in. A football math between the various departments of the store was hastily arranged, and the opponents took the field in the following line-up:
Departments-- Hodgson, Adro, McLachlan, Hunter, Simpson, Cunningham, Shaw, Vair, Beason, Potter and Harvey.
Store-- McKay, Tuft, Cantwell, Blurder, Shaw, Barker, Jago, W. Ross, Nibbs, Godfrey and Ledder.
After the football match came a tug-of-war by the stalwarts, Mr. Skitts, the assistant manager, being unanimously elected referee. The stalwarts who participated in the glory of the single men men were: McKay, Jago, Tuft, Cantwell, Wain, W. Simpson, G. Ordill, Hodgson, Benson, Scotland, Higgins and C. Simpson. Biting the dust of defeat, Messrs. Cunningham, Shaw, Gray, Wilson, Laycock, Derwin, Godfrey, Nibbs, Andrews, C. Barker, Watkins, and Hemmings returned to town in crestfallen array.
The grocery department's challenge to the store for a one-half mile relay race resulted in the victory of the store representatives: Hunter, Harvey, Benson and Wilson, over McKay, Tuft, Cantwell and Lewis. A sack race was won by McKay, Jago coming in second and Benson third.
The above list covers fairly well the adventures of the day, except an excursion in a canoe to the Vermilion lakes, that will never be written. It was too full of poetry for journalistic prose, and therefore quite above and beyond the pencil of the author of this narrative, R.I.P.
The return journey was accomplished with the same expedition as marked the outward journey. To while away the tedium of travel, the occupants of the first car organized a performance, which revealed a surprising amount of native talent. As is usual on the excursion parties of the Hudson's Bay company, the Scotch are well to the fore, and last night's entertainment was no exception to the rule. This impromptu performance, resembling a night wi' Burns, with "God Save the King" as a chaser.
Every minute of this very delightful day Mr. Baker, as the host, looked after the comfort and pleasure of his guests. Before they had time to think of some little comfort it was forthcoming. A kindly consideration for all, and the utmost urbanity of manner, makes this gentleman an ideal host.
He was the recipient of many congratulations last night just before the picnicers separated, and in the first car-- the car of music and revelry-- the guests sang "He's a Jolly Good Fellow," "See Him Smiling," and then loudly called for a speech. However, the C.P.R., with that all-comprehensiveness of theirs, that marks all their arrangements in western Canada, had made this impossible. The wheels of the car roared, and speaking was out of the question.
Thus ended the second annual excursion of the Hudson's Bay company, and more power to the man, who invented them. Mr. Baker's guests for the day were: J. H. Woods, of the Herald; George Parker, Miss Hayden, of the Albertan; Miss McClennan and T. T. John, of the Herald.
The guests of the company included the following employees:
Office-- J. M. Baker, manger, W. E. Skitch, assistant manager, G. E. Ledder, L. M. Hodgson, G. Kerr, Miss B. Hull, Miss O. Ronn, Miss J. Macleod, Miss E. Srigley, Mrs. M. McKeage, C. Stagles. Dry Goods Dept.-- H. G. French, manager, J. M. Belfry, L. B. Higgins, H. J. Rivett, B. Wilkinson, Miss A. L. Abbott, Miss W. Baldston, Miss J. Dunbar, Miss R. L. Gray, Miss M. Hollingsdale, Miss A. Jennings, Miss A. McPhail, Miss K. McPhail, Miss M. Rhule, Miss A. E. Smith, Miss F. Tomlinson, Miss A. Lang. Men's Furnishings Dept.-- H. L. Robbins, manager, J. Scotland, J. L. Hunter, J. D. Harvey, A. R. Wilson, T. A. Ardell, D. Scotland. Grocery Dept.-- A. Evans, manager, S. Tuff, C. J. Cantwell, D. Lewis, W. Datkins, D. Wood, Jas. McKay, Miss K. Farrin, Miss M. Litchfield. Liquor Dept.-- W. Ross, manager, E. R. Nibbs, J. Scath, A. Price, J. Godfrey. Boot and Shoe Dept.-- C. J. Simpson, manager, T. A. Potter, A. Muir, Miss F. Ross. Ladies' Ready-to-Wear Dept.-- A. H. Appleton, manager, Miss J. Gray, Miss W. Hull, Miss A. Ronn, Miss M. C. Delay, Miss B. A. Dale, Miss E. A. Smith, Miss L. C. Ross, Miss S. Irish, W. Pullar. Carpet Dept.-- W. Shaw, manager, W. S. Cunningham, S. H. Benson, H. Hemmings. Crockery Dept.-- W. R. Fulton, manager, C. Barker, A. Blundred, Miss A. Ross. Night Watchman, A. Gray. Delivery Dept.-- F. Crawford, dispatcher; A. Shaw, H. Bartlett, J. Johns, R. H. Andrews, K. Matheson, W. R. McMillan, R. Wallace, J. Hughes. Shipping Dept.-- T. T. Bowes, A. Shaw, J. Jagoos. Caretakers, H. Wain, W. Durwin. Advertising Manager, H. G. Hunt. Store Trimmer, W. E. McLachlan. Dressmaking Dept.-- Miss Stibbs, Miss M. Bradden, Miss I. Isherwood, Miss N. Beach, Miss A. Gibson, Miss J. Caltanach, Miss Irene Whittle, Miss B. Stibbs.
Extracted by J. Kynman 2009-05-31