East Norwalk in Fairfield County, Connecticut — The American Northeast (New England)
By the late 1800s, swimming (or “bathing” as it was known as then) had become an extremely popular recreational activity in America. In the 1910s, the American Red Cross and Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) responded to the alarming number of drownings nationwide by beginning to organize, train and equip men specifically for water rescues. They were called “lifeguards.”
Norwalk’s first lifeguard corps was formed by a group of men, including brothers Louis, John and Alphonso Canevari, in the late 1920s, just a few years after Calf Pasture Beach Park opened. (Louis Canevari operated the picnic grove/beach at adjacent Shady Beach, while he leased – and later purchased – from the Marvin Family.)
Chartered by the Red Cross in 1928, Norwalk’s volunteer lifeguards were initially based in a wooden station house built at about mid-beach. After that house was destroyed by a hurricane, a second lifeguard station stood very near this spot until the late 1980s.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Waterways & Vessels. A significant historical year for this entry is 1928.
Location. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Norwalk CT 06851, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Harvesting from the Sea (a few steps from this marker); The British Invasion (about 500 feet away, measured in a direct line); A Calf Pasture Primer (approx. 0.2 miles away); Taylor Farm Park (approx. 0.3 miles away); The Marvin Property (approx. 0.6 miles away); Fitch’s Point (approx. 0.9 miles away); Roger Ludlow (approx. 0.9 miles away); A Habitat Renewed (approx. 1.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in East Norwalk.
More about this marker. Two photographs appear on the left side of the marker. One, courtesy of Fred Canevari shows the lifeguards of Calf Pasture Beach posing in 1937. Below this is a photo supplied by the Norwalk Museum. It has a caption of “A summer day circa 1960, with longtime head lifeguard Joe Kerekes overlooking the crowded Calf Pasture beach.”
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on March 13, 2012, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 805 times since then and 85 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on March 13, 2012, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey.