Take me to the Casbar…well, really the phrase was ‘Take Me to the Casbah’
…but in Quesnel in the 50’s and 60’s…maybe even the 70’s? the place to be
was the Casbar Drive-In. Many a story could be told about the happenings at this establishment…some of which maybe shouldn’t be repeated?
With the passing of Paul Gauthier last year in March 2015 another era passed into history. Paul, from 1947 to the late 70’s, owned and operated the Carib Movie House Theatre and Casbar Drive-In Theatre and Motel which boasted the largest TV screen in the world. The gimmick at the Casbar was that there was a drive-in movie theatre incorporated with the motel and that was the TV screen. Each room had a large picture window that faced toward the screen and there were speakers in the room over which the movie soundtrack was piped. There were a few ‘drawbacks’ here…in that the motel was a ways past the last row of cars and the screen was difficult to see. Even though the video was far from perfect, one was still able to watch a movie on the “world’s largest TV screen”.
So…the latest project the Museum has on its agenda is to have a little Casbar ‘reunion’. Jean Muir, her family, friends and many others worked/ran the Casbar for more than 20 years. We are organizing an evening some time this spring when former employees and anyone involved with the Casbar are invited to come down to the Museum to reminisce.
The intent is to document the stories, anecdotes and anything to do with the Drive-In. It should be an evening of laughter and giggles. I say that because just listening to a few of the people to whom I have mentioned this particular project have already started to recall their time there, quite nostalgically, I might add ! And had several incidents to relate, particularly Jean Muir! Something about french fries… I said so-and- so said she (Jean) had the best french fries in town and Jean said there were no fries at the concession!
If you ever worked at the Casbar, in any capacity and are willing to share your memories, call the Museum 250-992-9850 and give us your name and number so we can contact you when we get this all together.
And if you are unable to attend but would like your memories recorded, let us know and we can arrange something…or if you want to write them down and send them to the Museum, we would love to have them.
Then…you can Take Me to the Casbar!
How many, many friendships
Life’s path has let me see;
I’ve kept a scrap of each of them
To make the whole of me.
June Masters Bacher
Hope to see you as we ‘pass time’ at the Museum.
Honey Affleck is chair of the Museum Commission and regular Observer contributor.