Happy Acres - Those Places Thursday

Happy Acres Family Resort, Middlefield, CT

(Digital Images. Photographs Privately Held By Cynthia Shenette; Photographs and Text, Copyright (c) 2013 Cynthia Shenette) My mom, Christine (Szerejko) Shenette always use to talk about Happy Acres Family Resort.  She and her sister, Helene (Szerejko) Dingle use to spend their summer vacations there in the late 1940s.  After Helene got married in 1948 mom still vacationed there. Mom would meet her friend, Rosalie (Wagner) Massey, at the resort. Rosalie lived in New York City so it was a nice place for the girls to meet between Worcester, Massachusetts and NYC.

Left, Christine (Szerejko) Shenette; Middle, Mary Foersta ; Left, Helene (Szerejko) Dingle
23 August 1947
Until I did a little research I had no idea where Happy Acres was located.  I knew it couldn't be too far from where my mom lived at the time in Worcester, Massachusetts.  I eventually discovered that Happy Acres was a well known resort located on Lake Beseck in Middlefield, Connecticut.  I found photos of the resort online and matched the places shown in the online photos to my photos below.

Christine (Szerejko) Shenette
Happy Acres was started by Captain Jack Sibley, a former World War I pilot, during the 1940s.  The resort started out as a fresh air camp for city kids in the 1930s.  It eventually became a family resort, finally closing in the 1970s.  I was happy to discover that there is a facebook page devoted to Happy Acres, and the facebook page is great! There is a map of the layout of the resort, as well as some great old photographs and postcard images. There is even a photo of Captain Sibley himself!  Apparently, people use to come back year after year, reuniting with other resort friends who often vacationed the same week each year.

Mom use to talk about the fun she had at Happy Acres--tennis, games, swimming.  One of her most vivid memories was of meeting Rosalie at the resort.  Apparently, Happy Acres employed an accordionist to play music as guests arrived at the resort.  My mom said on this particular day the accordionist played the song Rosalie over and over again as people arrived. When mom's friend Rosalie finally arrived at the resort the accordionist played Rosalie one more time.  Rosalie was thrilled because she thought he was playing it especially for her!

Travel back in time with me.  

Happy Acres offers...



Christine (Szerejko) Shenette

Left, Unidentified Friend; Right, Helen (Szerejko) Dingle

Left, Helen (Szerejko) Dingle; Right, Unidentified Little Friend
Fun for kids of all ages!

Left, Christine (Szerejko) Shenette; Left, Unidentified Friend
Horseback riding!

Helene (Szerejko) Dingle

Left, Helene (Szerejko) Dingle; Right, Unidentified Friend
Opportunities to make new friends!

The "Sharayko" Girls
Left, Christine (Szerejko) Shenette; Right, Helen (Szerejko) Dingle

Happy memories.

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1 comment:

Kristin said...

It does look like they are having a lot of fun.