Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 30/7/2018 (1173 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
What is your favourite ice cream treat at the Bridge Drive-In? I like a vanilla and chocolate twist in a cone. On a hot day you have to eat it quickly.
I asked Jessica Jacob what she and her husband Justin prefer. The young couple have owned and operated the BDI since 2012. Jessica says her favorites are the Goog Special and a hot fudge sundae.
Have you ever splurged on a Goog? I have not, but maybe this summer I will.
Justin, who works at the BDI every day, goes for a pineapple milkshake. He and Jessica introduced the BDI ice cream truck a couple of years ago. It is a welcome sight.
The BDI has been selling ice cream since the 1950s. Winnipeg architect Leslie (Les) J. Stechesen designed the structure in 1958. Stechesen’s other projects include St. Paul’s High School and Chapel, the Brandon Student Union Building, the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School and the Pantages Theatre addition.
Before the current BDI building was erected, the original ‘bungalow’ store and confectionary stood in its place.
"It had two stuffed moose out front," writes Ted McLachlan, who has researched River Park and Elm Park for over 30 years.
"A six-plus story high ski-jump was next door to the bungalow, where the flat roofed house is today," wrote McLachlan.
A pontoon bridge spanned the Red River at the BDI site from the 1890s to 1912. The bridge allowed pedestrians to walk to Elm Park, which was then a large almost untouched piece of land.
Once upon a time, from 1890 to 1911, Elm Park, now Kingston Row and Kingston Crescent, was a park with a path along the riverbank and trees in abundance. Joyce Laidler, who lives in this area tells me that foxes, raccoons and deer still live in or travel through the peninsula.
In 1912-1913, the Elm Park Bridge, built for vehicles, replaced the pontoon bridge and provided easy access to and from St. Vital. For 33 years, a 10-cent toll was charged to help pay for the bridge. At 15 feet wide, the bridge just accommodated two-way traffic. I can remember my family driving over the bridge.
In 1974, the bridge was closed to vehicles as the new St. Vital Bridge, further east, had been effectively moving traffic from Osborne Street to St. Vital since 1965.
Jessica and Justin Jacob purchased the BDI from Jessica’s grandparents, Wanda and Allan Rutherford.
In the early 1970s the BDI was owned by the Savard family. The Rutherfords bought the business with two other families in 1974 and eventually bought the other families out. Wanda Rutherford made the sauces for the ice cream concoctions.
The Bridge Drive-In is open from March to October. If you line up for an ice cream treat do not despair.
The shop will not close until the last person in line is served.
Dianne Doney is a community correspondent for Fort Rouge. You can contact her at email@example.com
Fort Rouge community correspondent
Dianne Doney is a community correspondent for Fort Rouge.