A walk down memory lane in honor of Carol Klem

30 Dec

I’ve been thinking a lot about Carol Klem lately.

Last month I posted a blog reminding everyone that November 21 is, and will always be, Carol Klem Day in the Village of Webster. (If you didn’t know Carol, check out the blog to understand what a village treasure she was.)

More recently, I was asked to craft a biography for Carol to be posted on the Webster Museum’s Webster Through the Years page. As I was scrolling through old blogs looking for a photo to accompany that biography, I came across one post that really made me smile.

Those of you who knew Carol and her Village Focus column in the Webster Herald will remember how Carol would pen an epic holiday poem every year, highlighting all of the great Village of Webster people and events she encountered that year. It was always published in the Herald between Christmas and New Year’s Day.

As a writer and blogger myself, I was a huge Carol Klem fan, and I feel blessed to have considered her a good friend before she passed in 2018. I always enjoyed her annual poems and in 2012, they inspired me to write one of my own.

I had emailed her that year to tell her how impressed I was with her latest installment. When she responded, she lamented that since she wrote for the Village of Webster, she couldn’t really include anything about the greater Town of Webster.

Since I was more familiar with the town than the village at that point (I actually was living in North Penfield then) I tried to fill in some of the blanks with a poem of my own.

In memory of Carol Klem, here is that poem (originally posted nine years ago today, Dec. 30, 2012, which is why it’s a bit out of date.)


Last night I tossed and turned in bed,
no visions of sugarplums in MY head.
Carol’s poem I’d just read.
(She does one every year.)

It really was a work of art,
which came directly from the heart,
‘bout the people and places that are a part
of this village we hold so dear.

A role model, Carol is to me.
The Webster village crier is she.
Just like her I want to be
when I grow up (if I do).

But this time she has gone too far.
She has really raised the bar
by adding to her repertoire
an epic poem so sweet and true.

But I will do my very best.
I’ll put my ‘puter to the test,
and till it’s done I will not rest
We’ll see how far it goes.

But unlike Carol, I must say
there absolutely is NO way,
I canNOT, to my great dismay,
name everyone I knows.

Carol has, luckily,
covered the village quite thoroughly.
So the only thing that’s left for me
is to “report” on the rest of the town.

Webster Village, we love you, true,
but there’s much more to our town than you.
There are businesses, people, festivals, too.
The best community, hands down.

Like all our parks (you know the ones),
for picnics, games and playground fun.
There’s even one where kids can run
beneath a spraying whale.

There’s Webster Park to barbecue,
Finn, Ridge and Kent and Empire, too.
There’s Sandbar with its sunset views,
and North Ponds with its biking trail.

The town’s natural beauty does not end there.
There are hiking trails just everywhere.
The Friends keep them in good repair
so we can all enjoy them.

Like Vosburg, Whiting, Gosnell, Finn.
Midnight, Ungar, and Arboretum,
Hojack (where the trains have been),
and Four Mile Creek (the new one).

Even driving can be fun
(If 104 is ever done),
but stay off Ridge Road, everyone
at lunch and dinner time.

Our schools do make us very proud.
By the marching band are people wowed.
School concerts always draw a crowd,
and the musicals are prime.

An open house the Town does host,
a summer party with fireworks,
the Fiesta at St. Rita’s Church,
and Community Arts Day.

At the Aquatic Center you can take a swim.
With ice skates at the arena you’ll skim,
and at the library a good book begin,
while the kids enjoy a puppet play.

You can take a class at the Rec,
buy fruit at Obbie’s Farm Market,
see a movie (like 3-D Shrek!),
then go next door to knock some pins.

Want to get something good to eat?
Webster’s offerings can’t be beat.
Like Bill Gray’s, Hedge’s, Charlie’s, T’s,
then an Abbott’s ice cream for some grins.

And at the head of this great town,
Supervisor Nesbitt can be found,
And the talented staff he keeps around
To keep things running well.

They keep our streets clear when it snows,
their free mulch helps our flowers grow.
They keep sewers clear and police our roads.
(Yes, and tax us for it all…)

Now, I’ve only just begun to list
the great things in Webster that exist.
Many people and places I have missed
in this overly long poem.

But I think that I have proved my case
that Webster is a special place.
I’m glad it’s become MY home base.
(Or, as I call it, “home”).

* * *

email me  at missyblog@gmail.com“Like” this blog on Facebook and follow me on Twitter and Instagram (@missyblog)

You can also get email notifications every time I post a new blog by using the “Follow Me” link on the right side of this page.

One Response to “A walk down memory lane in honor of Carol Klem”

  1. Nancy Syracusa December 31, 2021 at 5:39 am #

    How very much I enjoyed this piece from you!! The cares of the day took flight for awhile.
    Please know that you are appreciated.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: