Seventy-five years ago, a bridge in the North Country that connects the U.S. and Canada had its grand opening and in order to celebrate the momentous occasion, the Thousand Islands Bridge Authority threw an open house event Saturday morning. YNN's Carmella Mataloni was at the event and tells us why so many showed up to celebrate the anniversary.
JEFFERSON COUNTY, N.Y. -- On August 18, 1938, U.S. President Franklin Roosevelt and Canadian Prime Minister William Mackenzie King attended the ribbon cutting ceremony for the opening of the Thousand Islands Bridge.
Now, 75 years later, thousands of people from all over the North Country showed up to celebrate the bridge that is a big part of the North Country.
"It's been just a fabulous day with a lot of love here for this facility and what happened in 1938," said Robert Horr, T.I. Bridge Authority Executive Director.
The Thousand Islands Bridge Authority hosted a free open house event on their property near the Thousand Islands Welcome Center and there was something to do for all ages. Some browsed through hundreds of vintage cars that were set up in a lot. Others filled into a large tent and listened to music played by the 10th Mountain Division Band.
"I've had people in their 90s here and kids getting their face painted and all that stuff so it has been a terrific family day," said Horr.
Some of the people we caught up with were actually here 75 years ago when the bridge first opened and they say it is a remarkable feeling to be able to be here to celebrate such a big occasion.
"This all opened up and it joined two countries, just that bridge and it was just a wonderful time for everyone," said Dorothy Siewertson, Alexandria Bay resident.
Dorothy Siewertson was in her 20s when the bridge first opened. Now just two weeks shy of 102, she says this celebration is something is happy to be able to see.
"The improvements and how much this place has grown into a place to be, it's just a beautiful place," said Siewertson.