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Mason County Memories

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History Columns are arranged by year of publication in the Ludington Daily News

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david k petersen

History Column 291 I've got a Secret Dave Petersen "I've got a secret" and Ludington had something in common. What is that you say? Whose secret? Back in the early days of television, the days when we couldn't watch movies and TV on a cell phone the size of the ace of spades there was an entertainer by the name of Garry Moore. He was an early pioneer of that new fangled contraption. Come to think of it the first TV's only had about a 6 inch screen although the case weighed about 200 pounds. Couldn't take that one to the beach. It was a lot like the record players of our youth, you remember, they were our I-Pods of the day except they weighed 30 pounds and you really could not take them anywhere. Garry Moore (the tv host) had his own variety show called "The Garry Moore Show" from 1950 to 1967, "I've got a Secret" from 1952 to 1966 and "To Tell the Truth" from 1969 to 1976. If you have lived here any number of years you know that I don't have much of a secret but for everyone else the secret was that in 1960 Garry Moore the host traded places with Ludington native Garry Moore an oiler on the PM 22. Our Garry received an invite to Emcee the show, he not only shared the unusual spelling of his first name but also his birthday with the show's host. The show was set up with a celebrity panel, contestants would enter and introduce themselves with their name and hometown and exclaim "I've got a secret!" usually it was something embarrassing, unusual or odd and the panelists would have so much time in each round to ask questions and guess the secret. Contestants could earn some money by stumping the panelists, sometimes as much as $80.00. After returning to Ludington Garry found that Garry Moore day had been declared in Ludington with the merchants sponsoring a I've got a Secret sale. Mayor Rathsack another C&O man gave Garry the key to the city at a breakfast held in his honor. Garry and his wife Esther owned and managed Moore's Lakeview Cottages until they sold the business in November of 1969 to Leonard Neilsen. Thanks to Janice Moore Babcock for sharing one of her family stories and pictures with us for this weeks column. If you have photographs to share with our readers please contact me at 757-3240, e-mail to davep@blackcreekpress.com, or mail in care of the Ludington Daily News, P.O. Box 340, Ludington, MI, 49431 Pic1 Lakeview Cottages are located on North Ferry street in Ludington, the business is still operating in that location although it looks a little different today. Pic2 Garry Moore receives the key to the City of Ludington from Mayor Dan Rathsack on Garry Moore Day as they prepare to send a giant postcard to TV host Garry Moore. Pic3 Pere Marquette Carferry No. 22 where Garry worked in the Engine room as an oiler for the C&O Pic4 Garry Moore became a local celebrity after returning from taping the show.

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