No Strawberry Days for 2021 – So Let’s Look Back to 1966
The Glenwood Springs Chamber Resort Association made the decision to cancel the Strawberry Days Festival for the second year in a row. Since we can't have a Miss Strawberry Days 2021, let's take a look back at 1966.
The photo above was included in a gallery post featuring Robert Grant's photographs. I inherited Bob's photo collection 20 years ago, and have spent the last two decades trying to track down the identity of those pictured. Thanks to your information, three of the Strawberry Queen hopefuls pictured here have been identified.
It seems everyone agrees the dark-haired woman on the far left is none other than Donna White. Most agree the woman second from left is Mary Beth Westlake. Also pictured, although I'm not sure where in the lineup, is Cindy Demille.
If I may, a quick side note: Do you see the semi-trailer in the background in the photo above? Does it say "P-I-E"? Wow, that's a tremendous amount of pie. I decided to look into this a little deeper. It seems P-I-E stands for "Pacific Intermountain Express." According to Facebook, back in the 1950s, P-I-E was the largest trucking company in the world. In 1973 it was purchased by IU International, and in 1983 merged with Ryder Truck Lines forming Ryder/P.I.E. Nationwide.
I digress. Getting back to the Strawberry Queen event, how did the identities of the women come to be known? Somewhere in the middle of 2020, a post was published featuring a photo of a young girl who had just had about 12-inches of hair cut off. This was from a framed photo my grandpa, Bob Grant, used in a photo exhibit in New York City decades ago. I'm trying to find out who the little girl is so the photo can be given to her or her family. Attached to that post was the photo gallery from which the Strawberry Queen photo was included.
The images from Glenwood Springs made the rounds via social media, and ultimately found their way to the "You Know You're From Glenwood Spring When You..." Facebook page. From there, people started to chime in with info as to the identities of the women pictured.
For those of us not living in Glenwood Springs, what exactly is the Strawberry Days Festival? According to uncovercolorado.com:
Held annually since 1898, Strawberry Days is one of the longest running festivals in Colorado! And they’ll be back once again for their 123rd year (in 2020) to celebrate this delicious berry.
The festival features the following events:
- Strawberry Days Parade
- Main Stage Entertainment
- Arts & Crafts Fair/Food Court
- Miss Strawberry Days
- Strawberry Patch Kids
- Cool Zone
Well, a couple of photos from the 1966 Strawberry Days won't make up for this year's canceled event, but at least it's something. Can you believe that... an event running for 124 consecutive years? With any luck, the event will be back in full force in 2022.