Rochester Municipal Park Has Been the Place to Play for 85 Years

The Avon Park dam formed a popular swimming hole. The dam and bridge were dismantled in the 1980s. (From the Archives of the Rochester Hills Museum at Van Hoosen Farm) Eighty-five years ago this summer, Rochester residents dedicated a new recreation spot on Paint Creek. Built on the site of a bankrupt dairy farm and a long-abandoned millrace, Avon Park—now Rochester Municipal Park—quickly became a favorite place for area residents to swim, picnic, and play. The property on which Rochester … [Read more...]

Remembering Rochester: The Rochester Symphony Orchestra

Back in 2011, May was a 'golden' month in Rochester history as the Rochester Symphony Orchestra (RSO) marked a musical milestone by celebrating its 50th anniversary. On May 11, 1961, the Rochester Clarion announced to its readers that the organizational meeting of the new Rochester Civic Orchestra had taken place. The fledgling orchestra, 38 members strong, offered its first public concert at Rochester High School on May 18 of that year, under the baton of Frederic Johnson. Read the full … [Read more...]

This Month in Rochester History

Not to jinx us, but this month's post is about a weather event.  Fifty years ago this month, Rochester residents were busy digging out from the Blizzard of 1965.  A foot of snow was dropped on the area, carried by 50-mile-an-hour winds.  According to the Rochester Clarion's report, schools, factories and most downtown businesses were closed for two days.  The snow removal cost the village of Rochester $4455 and 742 man hours. This story originally appeared on … [Read more...]

Lifelong Rochester Resident and Local Historian Herb Peters dies at age 95

Described as a “walking ambassador for the Rochester community,” Herb Peters “just loved the area,” explains Patrick McKay from the Rochester Hills Museum at VanHoosen Farm. McKay, supervisor of the museum, told Rochester Media that “we lost a really good friend.” Herb Peters, born in Rochester, died Easter Sunday – he was 95 years old. He graduated from Rochester High School in 1932 and went on to receive his Bachelors Degree from Alma College in 1938. Peters served in the Army during World … [Read more...]