Column continues to celebrate Okanogan County|
Elizabeth Widel's "Exploring the Okanogan" column debuted in the May 9, 1957, issue of The Chronicle.
An introduction to the column explained, "This is the first in a series of Okanogan County pictures from the files of Glen and Elizabeth Widel, shop foreman and Linotype operator at The Omak Chronicle.
"The Widels travel nowhere without their cameras, and during the past several years have built up a striking collection of scenes and distinctive landmarks from every corner of the Okanogan," the introduction continued.
The first column featured a photograph of a hillside near Loomis, credited to "Widel" and copy by Elizabeth.
The photo caption noted, in part, that "the series will appear weekly in The Chronicle." Little did the editor or Elizabeth know that the initial column would start a run of 2,500 and still counting.
"It should be understood from the outset that we are strongly partisan in our views: We love Okanogan County in all its sprawling size, from the dramatic grandeur of the Sawtooth range on the west down to the shyest wildflower hiding in the grass," the first column began.
"Weekends we like to provision the car, grab the cameras and take off," Elizabeth continued.
After Glen's death, Elizabeth continued the column alone and to this day offers her unique perspectives on Okanogan County (and nearby surrounds). The Linotype has long since gone to the scrap heap - she uses a PC now - but she continues to find the county's sprawling vistas with her camera lens.
We're glad she does and salute her for 2,500 columns - and counting.