Sunday, July 9, 2017

Family Reunions-Warner Family Picnic

Growing up I remember the highlights of my Summer Vacations were 2 family reunions.  About the 3rd week of July was the Warner Family Picnic which I can remember always being held at Wildwood State Park in Wading River, New York.  About the 3rd week of August was the King Family Picnic that I remember being held at Belmont Lake State Park in North Babylon, New York.  These were always great times with my parents, siblings, grandparents, cousins and extended family.  The amazing food was always packed in picnic baskets (I can still remember my grandparents green woven picnic basket) with care and my mother always made the best chocolate and butterscotch brownies.  It was a time of fun playing with cousins and eating lots of great food. 

I remember trying to put together who extended family members were at the picnics and how we were connected as I got older.  (Really wish I had written down some of the many things I had heard at the picnics over the years.)

I decided to take a look at what I could find out about the Warner Family Picnic first.  Since the picnics were held in the same area over the years I thought I would see what I could find about the picnic in the local newspapers where many of which are now available digitally.  I know the Warner Picnic was reportedly first held in 1921.

Here are some of the articles I found in the local newspapers through
This is what I found in The County Review from 21 July 1938 under the Baiting Hollow section:

Then there were times that I found something like this in The Northport Journal  from 21 July 1955 under the Local News section:
I never would have thought to search in this newspaper since it isn’t in the area where the picnic was held but it is an area that family lived in.

But the best was when I found one like this in the Mid-Island Mail on July 20, 1938:
The wealth of family information in this last article is wonderful!  Again not a local newspaper but what great information.

As I read all of these newspaper clippings about the previous picnics I have to figure out how all the people mentioned in the newspaper fit in to my family tree.  I recognize a lot of the names but there are some I am definitely not sure of.  It’s also interesting to see that the location was not always at Wildwood State Park.

Now living 3,000 miles away it has been difficult to get to the Warner Family Picnic as often as I’d like.  This year it works that I will be able to go again.  I really look forward to seeing familiar cousins that I haven’t seen in a while and in meeting some of the younger new ones.  I will be sure to make and bring some chocolate and butterscotch brownies using my mother’s recipes.
 Smile  I can almost taste them.  YUM! 
If you have any corrections or additions or stories to share I look forward to hearing them.
Enjoy the journey,

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