Haines, A Hundred Years, and a Big, Hurking Camera

By , August 17, 2010

On the 15th, Haines held a celebration marking the centennial of the town’s incorporation. We had a community potluck picnic, a street dance, and a panoramic photo taken on Main Street.The weather played a key role in the event, for good or for ill—I’m not sure which. Sunday was the hottest of the run of sunny days we’ve had recently, hotter still for those of us spending it on the pavement.

Ron Klein came up from Juneau with one of his many large, antique, specialty cameras. He takes panoramic and 360° photos with them. I’ve been in many of them over the years we lived in Juneau. Ron had come to Haines Memorial Day, 2000 to take a panoramic photo. It was on display at Sunday’s event. It showed about a quarter of the people who gathered this year, and they were all bundled up. A woman who had been there said the day was so cold and blustery that most people decided to stay home! Most people on Sunday dressed to beat the heat. I loved the warmth, but felt a little disappointed that we’d be memorialized in clothes we seldom wore. I’d have like to appear in my favorite jacket or hat. I guess my favorite fish-themed Hawaiian shirt will have to do. And, I suppose the abundance of lovely decolletage and sundresses will beguile future generations. Most of the conversation we heard in the crowd around us concerned clothing choices and compromises.

The photo was fun; Ron is great at inspiring crowds to stand still, even in what passes in northern Southeast Alaska as blazing heat, to have their picture taken. The food was great, as was visiting with people we rarely see. My years down south in large cities, and even in Juneau, which is, in our lights, a “big city,” have made me forget some of the joys of small town life, such as accepting a f hamburger patty from the hands of the town mayor (“excuse my fingers!”) who’s assisting the Chief of Police at the grill. They both know who I am, I’m not just another face in the crowd.

But, I missed the best story of the day, a story that I absolutely love. Read it here, and enjoy!

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