UPDATE: We have names! | News, Sports, Jobs

The annual Saranac Lake Bike Rodeo will be held today at 10 a.m. at the Saranac Lake Civic Center on Ampersand Avenue. Saranac Lakers have been loving bicycle (and tricycle!) riding all throughout history. These two little girls are on the lawn of what is now 17 Main St., with the Paul Smith’s Electric Light and Power and Railroad building visible behind them. This photograph was printed by Kollecker’s Kodak and Gift Shop. Both girls were 5 years old and in first grade in 1943 when this photo was taken. The girl on the tricycle is Joyce (Durgan) Mace, who operates the Emerald Springs Ranch near Lake Clear, and her friend is Helen (Taylor) Zimmerman, who currently lives in Rochester. Joyce turned 86 years old on March 25. Both are still good friends.
(Photo provided — Historic Saranac Lake Collection, 2024.2.186. Gift of Gus Dueben.)

SARANAC LAKE — On page 4 of Thursday’s Enterprise, a photo from Historic Saranac Lake archive was published showing two unidentified girls posing next to the Saranac River dam on Main Street, one standing next to her friend on a tricycle. On Thursday afternoon, the girl on the tricycle called the newspaper to put names to the faces.

Joyce (Durgan) Mace, who operates Emerald Springs Ranch on Route 186 between Lake Clear and Saranac Lake, called the editor to say she was the girl on the tricycle. The girl standing next to her is Helen (Taylor) Zimmerman, who currently lives in Rochester. Both were 5 years old and in first grade when the photo was taken in 1943. Mace turned 86 years old on March 25.

“That was such as surprise, it really was,” Mace said Friday about seeing the photo in the Enterprise. “She (Helen) called me, and I said, ‘What would we be in (the newspaper) for?’ And she said, ‘Somebody took a picture of us in the park when we were 5 years old.’ So we got a good kick out of it, and it was fun.”

Running the photo of the two girls with a tricycle was a way for the Enterprise and Historic Saranac Lake to help promote the Saranac Lake Bike Rodeo, which is being held from 10 a.m. to noon today at the Saranac Lake Civic Center on Ampersand Avenue. There will be free helmets and fittings, bike checks by an onsite mechanic, a bike safety course, face painting, an obstacle course and a free raffle for refurbished bicycles.

“I remember several days of playing in the park with her. I don’t just remember one,” Mace said. “We were best of friends.”

And they’re still good friends. Over the years, the women have stayed in touch, and seeing this photo printed by Kollecker’s Kodak and Gift Shop brought back some fond memories of growing up in Saranac Lake.

“It was cool,” Mace said, “especially as we’re both still alive, which is unusual at our age, and we’re still both very active.”

Historic Saranac Lake had acquired some photos from Kollecker’s shop, and many of the people in those photos remain unidentified. Chessie Monks-Kelly, archivist/curator at Historic Saranac Lake, said Friday that she will be contacting Mace to see if she can help identify more people in the photo collection.

Kollecker’s Kodak and Gift Shop was established around 1906 by William F. Kollecker. In addition to handling film processing for amateur photographers, he sold postcards and prints, frames, trinkets, knickknacks, stationery and greeting cards, according to HSL’s LocalWiki page. The shop was located at 71-79 Main St., known as the Coulter Block, and was in the space currently occupied by the Liz Company beauty salon. Kollecker’s shop closed on the date of his death, Aug. 12, 1962.

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