People

Sesqui-Centennial Singers

By F. Forbes Johnson & Brian Moss

I was asked to join Susquatch about nine years ago and have had the time of my life. We perform all over and it is the best bunch of guys and gals I’ve met in a long time. I asked Brian Moss to write the facts about the group because he was there from the beginning (see below). I have known Brian since the early 70’s when we were both involved with theatre and the first coffee house in Port Huron called, “The Cellar” located in the basement of the Alibi Bar. We had local and outside talent and lots of folk music. It was a place that teens and young adults could go and have fun without trouble. Mr. Mandt (a former teacher at PHHS) kind of oversaw the operation but we were mostly on our own.

Joni Mitchell, 1974

One highlight was when Chuck Mitchell performed and we got to sit in the kitchen with his wife JONI MITCHELL and drink coffee and talk. I spoke with her several years ago and she had many good memories of the Cellar. Who knew that she would be the star?

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In my career, many celebs performed at The Cellar and I have many stories and jokes to tell – all good. It was well known all over.

Brian tells of the beginning and I am sure together we will have many more stories to tell.

Brian Moss has a plethora of history of the area and knowing him has been educating, fun, joyful and he is one of the nicest people ever. I hope through the next months more people will appreciate his invaluable knowledge of Saint Clair, Port Huron, and the surrounding area.

Brian writes …

Formed in the Fall of 2007, the Sesqui-Centennial singers were to add turn of the century music to the historic event. Many local children of the 50’s remember the festivities of Saint Clair’s Centennial in 1958.  One of the remembrances involved  a group of barbershop singers that participated in those activities.  Original group was made up of: David Wilike, J. Mark Daniels, Ray Govaere, and Brian Moss.  Later joined by Tom Kephart and Drew Gorzen.  At the end of the Sesqui-Centennial year, several of the members were having fun and wanted to continue.

Thus was formed Susquatch [not Sasquatch ’cause no one messes with Sasquatch]. Susquatch “Men in Harmony” Under the sponsorship of the Saint Clair Theatre Guild, we have had many members come and go in the past ten years, but the premise remains; singing is good for you and fun too. Susquatch has sung for anniversaries, birthdays, funerals and group meetings.  Two years in a row for the Saint Clair County Rotary Clubs “Polio Fundraiser” several stage presentations including Saint Clair Theatre Guilds’ “Fifty Years of Broadway” in 2017.  Frequent visits to Mallards Landing through the year, singing for the “Save Our City Hall” event in Marine City, Saint Clair’s Winter Whiteout, Saint Clair Art Fair among others.

Over the years it was decided to not only to enlarge the group but to bless ourselves with the addition of female voices and so became ‘Susquatch’ ‘Voices in Harmony’. For the last several years, we have led Santa’s Float in SCTG’s Santa’s Workshop Float for Saint Clair’s Santa Parade and have been the only ‘live’ singing group in the parade.

Our only regular event is at the Voyageur on Monday evenings from 5-7 pm [with the exception of most Holidays] where we sing and encourage others to join in just for the fun of it.

For more information contact Forbes at forbesone@outlook.com.

Authors Addition:

2, 4, 6, 8, we’re the class of 68..

Yes, that’s right 50 years ago class of ’68, but it seems like yesterday to me. We are having our class reunion this month and I’m excited to see everyone. We were very lucky in our class. Yes, we lost members to Vietnam, and other catastrophes and lately — age. Some of us still keep in touch regularly and see each other. Anyone who hasn’t heard about it or wants to come, we are running late but I am sure we can get you in. Maybe not for dinner but dancing and drinks and good reminiscences; Ya’ll should come.  We are just coming in to our time, afterall! Email me at forbesone@outlook.com

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F. Forbes Johnson has been a Blue Water Area supporter for as long as he can remember. “I have have seen the good times, bad times and great times and have been lucky enough to have been part of a good many of them. I performed around the world, around the states, and around Port Huron. The blue in the water is in my blood and always will be. From Port Huron High School to Saint Clair County Community College, Central Michigan University to Michigan State. From speaking to singing to masters of ceremony to teaching to singing on hit albums, dancing with Marcel Marceau and National Touring Companies; THIS will always be home. I have been blessed to meet the finest people on earth, work with them, learn from them and find a good percentage of them in this area. To my fellow teachers, former students, performers, and many friends (who just happen to be the best ever) I am the most blessed man in this world. These are the people who have made me who I am. If I can impart any of whatever I have to one person, I will have been a success. Question me, talk to me, write to me and I guarantee an honest answer. It’s not easy but anything can be done with faith, hope and the will to do your very best in life. Anything is possible.”

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Email Forbes at forbesone@outlook.com
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Disclaimer: Blue Water Healthy Living is an online magazine located in Port Huron, Michigan. Our purpose is to promote healthy living by showcasing the Blue Water Area, its people, issues and surroundings. This online magazine is devoted to providing healthy living related stories, local happenings, and commentary. Often inspiring and uplifting, our stories come from our heart and soul to promote the enjoyment of a more fulfilling Blue Water Area lifestyle. The material on this web site is provided for informational and amusement purposes only and is not to be confused with any medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. The views and opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the opinions and values of Blue Water Healthy Living.

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