Bay's final "Letters to the Future" winner announced

The Bay Village Bicentennial Committee announce the third and final winner in its “Letters to the Future” contest. The committee will add this winning letter to Bay’s bicentennial time capsule along with the two letters previously announced.  The capsule will be sealed on December 31, 2010, to be opened 100 years from then—in 2110, Bay’s 300th birthday.

The first two letter-writing winners, nine-year-old Caroline Dannemiller, who represented the 16-and-under age category, and Dianne Borowski, who represented the 66-and-older category, will be joined by John Suter, winner of the 16-to-65 age category. Congratulations to all our winning writers and a big thank you to those residents who took the time to enter the contest and visit with the future.

John Suter’s handwritten letter notes his reasons for selecting Bay Village as home 40 years ago and examines the many social changes he has witnessed over those same 40 years. Suter concludes his letter to 2110 residents with a series of interesting queries that can only be answered by residents reading the letter 100 years from now.

The committee agreed that the trio of selected winners give a well-rounded picture of Bay, albeit from three different points of view. It was really remarkable how the letters received gave such a varied look and opinion of the same city. Regardless of which letter you read, the love for our small, residential community comes through.

We celebrate Bay Village, its history, its continuing efforts to be the best and to continue the city’s caring and giving ways.  We treasure the hope that nothing will dramatically change over the next 100 years unless it is for the betterment of all.  Happy 10.10.10!

June 15, 2010

To Bay Village Residents on your Tercentenary,
    In 1970 we moved to Bay Village, drawn by the seeming forest of trees, beautiful shoreline, diversity of housing styles and friendliness of the city. “Stop 20-1/2” signage was still on our corner telephone pole as a reminder of the earlier Interurban streetcar system. Interstate 90 had not arrived in the  western suburbs. We didn’t have cable TV, personal computers, the internet, cell phones or “tablecloth” restaurants.

In the 1970’s Bay suffered pollution inherited from Cleveland industry. Summer days we often had air inversions---thick, nasty air all around us. We also had phosphorus, a common laundry soap cleaning agent, draining into the ecosystem of Lake Erie. This caused algae blooms, turning the summer lake green. Robbed of precious oxygen, Erie’s perch, walleye and sport fishing were threatened. Phosphorus was banned; Lake Erie and the fish flourished.

Wildlife consisted of raccoons, rabbits chipmunks and the occasional opossum.

The pesticide DDT was banned in 1972. There was a slow, steady resurgence of American Bald Eagles, redtail falcons, foxes, coyotes, and deer---lots of deer who in 2010 have no fear of humans, roam freely and eat everything.

Today, I remember early 20th century homes along the shoreline that were either razed and replaced with much larger ones or totally remodeled. Will today’s preservation efforts allow you to enjoy century homes in 2110?

Today, we enjoy community band concerts, block parties, holiday remembrances, July 4th celebrations with fireworks and our great beaches.

As I write this, I wonder....what will your live entertainment be? Will newspapers and books be a thing of the past? Will images be holographic? How about telephones: will telepathy be common? Will the art of conversation be lost?

I only wish I could take a peek....

Bicentennially yours,
    John Suter

Read More on Bay Village
Volume 2, Issue 19, Posted 12:16 PM, 09.15.2010