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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - July 20, 1973, Lethbridge, Alberta 14 THI UTHBRIDGE HIKAID Friday, July 20, 1973 Team effort attempts to save drunks By JEM GRANT Herald Staff Writer The provincial court and its counsellors work closely together in Lethbridge to combat the city's alcohol problem, but some of the drunks couldn't care less. Interviews with 14 prison- ers who spent the night pre- vious in city police cells be- cause they had been intoxi- cated in a public place illus- trated that fines, jail terms and counselling have not prevented them from getting drunk again and again. Nor is it likely to until they're prepared to accept help. All but two of the prison- ers had been arrested at least three times previously for being intoxicated in a public place. It's a difficult decision for a judge to decide when le- niency might provide the in- centive for an alcoholic to k i c k the habit. Likewise, a counsellor must be able to detect when an alcoholic is prepared to accept help so sincere' plea can be made to the judge for a lenient sen- tence. Capt. Ron Butcher of the Salvation Army, a court counsellor, says alcoholics are happy in their misery until they recognize. the problem. When people request tougher action by the courts as a solution to the city's drunk problem they must differentiate between drunks and criminals, says a local provincial judge. Provincial Judge L. W. Hudson claims drunks aren't deterred by a stiff penalty so an increase in the penalty for being intoxicated in a public place wouldn't re- duce the number of drunks on city streets. However, he explains an increase in penalty for drinking in a specific public place can be a deterrent be- cause the drunks can still drink at another location where toe fine won't be as stiff. He cited Gait Gardens as an example of a stiff penalty deterring drunks from fre- quenting a specific location. Intoxicated persons arrest- ed in Gait Gardens are auto- matically fined and are given no time to pay. Gardens situation better In comparing today's sit- uation to a time prior to the commencement of the stiff penalty, Provincial J u d h e Hudson says instead of 20 (drunks) picked up in Gait Gardens he gets only the odd one. The court counsellors in- terviewed by The Herald don't feel they're being used by arrested drunks as method of obtaining lighter fines and time to pay. Capt. Butcher says most of the people appearing in court for intoxication in a public place are repeaters and he knows their case his- tories, thus isn't likely to be fooled by false statements. Norman Briscoe, court al- coholism counsellor with the Alberta Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Commission, says he has been used but "they only get away with it once." He indicates he only "stands up for them if they're willing to contri- Frank MacDooald, coun- sellor with the John Howard Society, says if he thinks a man is willing to change his ways be wffl fay to get them time to pay. If it is a student making the request 'Til do all I can to get him tune to pay" be- came education may be the solution to his habit, he states. The counsellors praised the working relationship they bare with the provin- cial judges and the city po- lice and described It as be- ing unique in Alberta. Mr. Briscoe counsels pris- oners in the cells before their appearance in court and as a result says he is better able to understand the prisoner's circumstance of arrest. Because most people don't speak up in court and quiet- ly plead guilty it is difficult for the judge to ten one per- son's character from anoth- er so Mr. Briscoe says he is often able to give the judge an opinion on whether it is safe to give the accused time to pay. Most of the drunks inter- viewed admitted to an- al- coholic problem, but weren't prepared to do anything for it. John, one of the regu- lars picked up for being drunk, says be doesn't like to "go to Alcoholic's Anony- must because it is too deep rooted" and be refuses to publicly admit that he is an alcoholic. Dean drinks even though he knows he is not supposed to for medical reasons. He claims AA has helped him. Rick is a diabetic and isn't supposed to drink, but ad- mits he drinks excessively. Howard is aware of his al- coholic problem and may seek help sometime. Jean says she only drinks once in a while but gets to- tally stoned when she does drink. Stephen claims be had just completed his job on a beet grower's farm and was heading out of town when he decided to have a couple of drinks. He despised jail and said be was getting out of the city before he landed in jail again. He was arrested by chy police again that eve- ning. Madeleine says she enjoys liquor but doesn't intend to get drunk enough to end up in city cells again. She was also arrested that evening on the same charge as the night before. Worried about police Before she began drinking the day she was arrested, Annie worried about getting picked up by police, but she says site still "enjoys drink- ing as a party thing.' Joe thinks be Is an alcohol- ic and regrets starting to drink but isn't looking for help. The day he was arrest- ed be says be was drinking to wash the dust down after a long day in the fields. Larry knows be shouldn't drink to such an extent that the police have to arrest him, bat be does like to drink with others. Leopard says be could quit drinking hut doesn't want to and claims counsellors aren't able to reach him. Henry admits to being an alcoholic, but hasn't sought help. "I feel ashamed of my- self when I get pat in be adds. John says he has a drink- ing problem and worries about being arrested by the police, however, he hasn't sought help. Most of the prisoners in- terviewed didn't think coun- selling was helping them or was likeily to help them in the future. Most didn't have a sojuiion to the drank prob- lem io the city, with the ex- ception of two men who thought a men's hostel would help keep them off the street when they bad too much to drink. Eight of the 14 prisoners claimed their arrest prob- ably prevented them from committing a more serious offence while under the in- fluence of alcohol. AH but three claimed the police treated them fairly during the arrest- One drunk didn't remem- ber being arrested and the other two said they swung at the police first before they were roughed up. One female prisoner said the ma- tron in city cells calls the female prisoners names and treats them as if they're Pigs- Most of the drunks inter- viewed became intoxicated on beer, wine, or a combina- tion of both and were arrest- ed in the 5th Street S. busi- ness section of town The HeraJd didn't question the drunks on whether they have pan hand led on 5th Street S., but the last man interviewed concluded the series of individual inter- views by saying "say, can I bonw a doBar." Inspector's direction Al Potter tells food booth operators not to stack hamburger patties too high in display glass. 80 kids boo Sam Slick Letnbridga children were captured Thursday by "Big Feet" and "Sergeant Press- force and his Trusty Dog as the Calgary Chil- dren's Theatre Group pre- sented the two plays to more than 80 children. Big Feet was presented in the morning at Kinsmen Park and the second at the Civic Centre in the afternoon. The seven-member group, known as Pocket Lane Play- house, came to Lethbridge at the request of the parks and recreation department. "We sent dome material about the troupe to the pso- ple here and they said they would like us to Gordon Lindstedt. director of the company explained. The troupe, operating under a Local Initiatives Program grant, has been visiting schools and play- grounds within a 100 mile radius of Calgary present- in particjpational children's plays. "The kids get involved in the plot of our participation- al plays whch are presented for various age groups, Kathy Growder, an actress with the playhouse said. During the winter when schools are operating the group is used as an educa- tional supplement to the cur- riculum. The children gave hearty cheers for Sergeant Press- force of the "Royal Cana- dian" and rounds of boos for the villianous "Sam After the performance, the audience broke into groups to participate in and learn about a segment of threa- dimensional art. The chil- dren built "inflatables" with the use of plastics and tape or as. one of the actors explained to the children: "We are going to build a gi- gantic beach ball." The company has received much applause in the form of letters from principals and teachers of the schools they have visited. fWho will give me for an empty paper By WARREN CARAGATA Herald Staff Writer The magic draws in the rubes and two hours later peo- ple find themselves leaving the fairgrounds with radios, lighters, electric shavers and a bewildering array of useful and not so useful mer- chandise. It's pure, unrefined capi- talism at Whoop-Up Days, operating out of the back of a truck parked on the end of the midway. ITs not hard to" tell which exhibit it is the one with the locals holding up and S10 bills, offering them to the smooth-taking man who lured them there with a bit of magic and the promise of valuable merchan- dise. The magic never mater- ializes and some peop'e may question whether the valu- able merchandise exists at all. Jerry Kampf. of Holly- wood, Florida, owns the con- cession travelling with Tho- mas Shows, and be stresses that bis operation is no dif- ferent from any other retail outlet. He will even go so far as Io say that people buying AM-FM radios and quadra- head electric shavers and wristwatdHS. and cook-ware end dining room table cen- trepieces and pen Td pencil sets and lighters a bet- ter deal from him than they wouki from a normal store. 6HOW PEOPLE Peopte don't come to the exhibition to buy things, he says, so his salesman, who would not give his name, orates the folks in with a little icagk show and some free prizes. sharp Sir. Kampf says. And what a show. It all begins when the salesman, using a child from the audience as an assistant, promises to turn 10 into a neat trick if you can do it and one that is ab- solutely guaranteed to bring in an audience. He tells the crowd he Has been hired by a company to lepresent the products of SO other companies to distribute their products. Super salesman (SS) an- nounces he will sell fishing reeis for ten cents, a starter china set (made in China) for five cents, and a corn-server set for a penny TWO-BIT BAG And an empty paper bag for 25 cente You heard right an emp- ty paper bag for 2S cents. "Would you all like an empty SS says. And the hands go up, quarters flashing in the neon glare. "m try and fill those up for the man with the. continuous patter says. People are still holding iheir hands up. trying to pur- chase ther empty paper bags. "Put your hands down, it looks like a Stt commands and you wonder if these are the first true words you've heard. The man perched in the hack of tie goodie-laden truck then starts throwing pens ottt into the audience, by now heavily committed to the bar- ker's performance "It's just practice for later, SS promises the uowd. Tbcn comes bsndfufc of free back scratchcrs asd steel" sawing need- les and you begin to wonder when SS is going to start giving away the beautiful rhinestone watch and the tape recorder and the "pure wood" bar, fashioned like an "English castle." He then holds up a cigar- ette lighter, not a but well-buit. When introduc- ed into stores it will cost about he says. The first four hand rising from the crowd indicating that the owners of the hands will pay for the lighter will be lucky enough to put one in their 25-cent empty paper bags. The transactions are com- pleted, but wait. SS proclaims that be never goes back on his word." I said all along I'd give them a he lighters) away and I al- ways keep my The SI bills and the light- ers are passed out into the crowd to the four outstretch- ed hands and the bait is taken. Now, who would give SS for an "empty leather case." A local passe? his money to the barker who then ex- plains that the case is ac- tually a key case The key case is given to Jhe purchaser, along with the J2. A plastic bos gets an of- fer of and when it turns oat cnckse a cuff-link set, both the jewellery and the are re- liirned to the person making Ihe offer. The suckers are now run- ring with the bait and it looks like a good catch. Another plastic box ap- Lethbridge's Mr. Clean checks Whoop-Up food By JIM GRANT Herald Staff Writer Hamburger, hotdogs. corn on the cob, soft ice cream it all smells so appetizing at the Whoop-Up midway, but is it fit to eat? Food poisoning bacteria in meat and milk products thrives in warm tempera- tures and what could be a better bacteria growth cen- tre than a display of food stacked up in a concession in expectation of the starv- ing midway masses. It is, doubtful if very many people give any thought to little colonies of bacteria when they're about to sat- isfy hunger pains developed through several hours of fun and activity on the fair grounds. Germ hunter Maybe they don't, but there's one man that does. Four times a day every day of the fair he dons a Mr. Clean smile and scurries through the kitchens and concessions at the fair in an attempt to seek out and elim- inate any unsanitary condi- tion. His name is Al Potter and he doesn't claim to be a Mr. dean or any other type of super hero. He is just dedi- cated to doing his job as a city health inspector and sometimes that means warn- ing people to alter their food handling and storage meth- ods. Food inspection is a thank- less job but it keeps some people out of a hospital bed and others from suffering nausea which so often mistaken by the public as the stomach flu. The Herald spent a morn- ing at the Whoop-Up fair with Mr. Potter this week as he checked the cleanliness of the grounds, garbage and liquid waste disposal, clean- liness of food handlers, food storage, food preparation equipment and so on. Better this year Food handling and storage at this year's fair appeared to be sanitary with a few minor exceptions which is much unlike the situation in the two previous fair years when two firms were ordered to close down. Food concessions are only closed down if they fail .to comply with an order to al- leviate an unsanitary condi- tion. The job of an inspector is to keep people constantly aware of sanitation and to educate them on proper food handling, preparation, and storage. "You have to explain why something has to be done if you hope to convince people about good food handling Mr. Potter ex- plains. A check behind a row of exhibition association's rent- al concessions revealed a much more sanitary method of liquid waste disposal than at previous year's fair. Last year the concession booth operators were just throwing their liquid waste into a ditch behind the booths, a method which produced a very obnoxious odor by the last day of the fair, Mr. Potter recalls. Prior to tiie 1973 fair the exhibition association install- ed a sewer system which in- cluded a sink in every booth to comply with the health inspector's instructions. The only unsanitary sewer condition found this year during the first day of in- spection was behind the food booths in the exhibition pa- vilion. A sewage pipe had not been extended to the drain- age hole and the sewage was running a short distance from the pipe over the pa- vilion HOOT to the drainage hole. Fix, please Mr. Potter asked the per- sons responsible to extend the pipe before the end of the day. A check of another booth in the pavilion was found to have a milk refrigeration unit out of order and the op- erators were told to have it repaired or replaced immed- iately and no milk was to be dispensed from it until it was operating at the proper temperature. Milk should be refrigerated at 40 or less. A thermometer reading indicated a 65 degree tem- perature at the time of in- spection. The refrigeration unji was replaced later the same day. Two other booths were found to have equipment that hadn't been cleaned the night before. H the practice continued the booths would likely become more of an at- traction to flies than to fair- goers. A concession booth opera- tor was told to keep refriger- ated corn in a separate con- tainer rather than have it lie in the fridge with other foods. A carnival firm was told to keep its display of cooked hamburgers and chicken at to prevent the meat from sitting for a long period of time awaiting its sale. A carnival concession booth improved its corn handling methods over the previous year upon the re- quest of the health inspector. This year the corn was froz- en in a refirgerator while last year it was stored in open water tubs- constantly walked around by people and pets. Refrigerated Mr. Potter said bulk stor- age by the carnival group was much better this year with perishable foods refrig- erated at proper tempera- tures. He also was pleased to see the carnival groups purchase meat and dairy products from reputable local firms rather than carry huge stocks of food from one city to another. All meat and dairy prod- ucts are checked tor brand labels and if the label is not recognized by the inspector the product is more closely scrutinized. The concession operator's reactions toward the health inspector provide as many smirks as the midway girlie show. All the concession opera- tors were very cooperative with the health inspector almost painfully so. One woman, when told to alter an unsanitary condi- tion, almost went into a state of shock as she repeated 'Til do it. Anything else." People seemed to be dart- ing each and every which way when Mr. Potter began inspecting a row of carnival concessions. By the time he went into the third booth, a woman was busy wanning the doors. Another carnival operator was slightly snarly when the inspector began inspecting apples that were awaiting candy coating. "You're ruin- ing my business, you she told the inspector. One year a carnival firm was forced to throw out boxes of apples that had deteriorated to a "questionable" state. Expected A local concession booth operator told the inspector she had been expecting him sooner or later because the had been warned by other operators that he would be around to inspect the booths. Actually, it was like old times for the inspector as many concession operators chuckled "I remember or "How are you this Super Salesman Counting the money and taking the profferred bills held out by the locals is climax of a two-hewr show at Whoop-Up Days. It's all legal, but for some people. Jerry Kampf s sales booth is not a fun way to start off the exhibition. pears and SS tells his au- dience that they can use it to get the rest of the mer- chandise in bis truck 000 worth. "Would vou like one of these SS asks the crowd. Pointing to the ubiquitous plastic box. SS says that to get mora merchandise, peo- ple must have "one of "One of these" seSs for and is a pen and pencil set. The pencil uses liquid lead aw! the pen, in- of being cluttered with springs, uses a "gravity vedge" to keep the point oat while writing. BURNT MATCH Nineteen people fork mer the demanded SS then holds a burnt maich in bis hand and offers ii for safe. A man adds the match to his booty for a SS fee. The bill is returned and the man who several seconds 4go bought a burnt match re- ceives a fishing reel as a Not content to sell burnt matches all night, SS holds up an empty bag and it is snapped up for "That kind of courage should be rewarded." SS tells tostomer and bands him his and the starter china set made in China. SS starts to reel In Jhe catch, selling AM-FM rad- ins. a cook-ware set and a room table centre- pjece (or each to people "nicky enough to have purchas- ed the pen and pencil set. MONEY KEPT OaJy this time the money is rtA returned and Jerry Kampf hat just made Three other people offer SS for "something in the- back of his mind." The money changes hands and three locals have jast pur- chased sets of men's toile- tries "Who's really broke to- night, who'd spend S5 for nothing." Two more people put op their hands and they are the proud new owners of a med- allion set of the Coat of Anns of Canada. SS then asks for bills and he gets 13 of'them. In return, he passes out plastic pens using a new type of ink that lasts twice as long ordinary ink. The show ends and people walk away wondering why they bought a radio at an exhibition. Ke got a fishing reel. medallion set. a pen and pencil set and a radio and was sure be got a good deal. However, a customer from an earlier show thinks oper- ations like Jerry Kampf's should not be allowed at the exhibition. Boyd Leavitt. of Cardston, feft the fair with his pur- chase of men's toiletries and fell be had been tricked into 'buying what be old. ;