506-1 AVE - Pike's Peek Inn
Updated: Mar 20
In the 1950's and 1960's, Ma-Me-O Beach was very popular with people in Wetaskiwin as a summer residence or vacation spot. The Pike family were one of the many residents who called Ma-Me-O Beach home from July to August each year.
Image 1: John (Jack) Pikedestroying the shed exterior_1965
Image 2: Shed rebuilt after destruction and renovations_1965
John (Jack) Pike bought the property at 506-1 Avenue in 1959. Up until this point the Pike's had rented a cabin each year from the Hayter family. When Jack bought the cabin, it consisted of an entry porch and one room with an attached small bedroom. As well, there was an OLD travel trailer on site, about 8 feet wide and 12 feet long. where Donald and Dennis slept for several summers. The shack was affectionately called “Tiny,” the name still being used for the shed that has long since taken its place.
A year or two after the purchase, Jack expanded the cabin out one way to make a kitchen and two small bedrooms. Later a bathroom and running water were added along with extending the living room out the other way and another larger bedroom. Getting running water was a BIG deal. Prior to that water had to be carried by one of the boys in two 2-gallon steel pails. The distance was not great as there was a municipal hand-operated water pump just up the street, but two gallon pails of water are very heavy. While the original rooms are still there, the cabin as it is now bears no resemblance to the original structure.
While Jack commuted daily during the week, Jack’s wife Phyllis and the five children spent life at the lake, mostly at the beach. The oldest child was born in 1947, and the last one in 1960, a year or two before the cabin was purchased. Phyllis and Jack entertained many people at the lake, both old friends from Edmonton, where they were born and raised, and friends from Wetaskiwin who also spent summers at the lake. Their lives in Wetaskiwin were equally busy.
Jack Pike was a farm implement dealer selling everything from tractors to snowmobiles. He bought the business, which was called Wetaskiwin Implements, in 1950, from N. E. Pearson. It was a Massey Harris (later Massey Ferguson) franchise. He was also involved in many civic groups. Phyllis worked as a clerk at Eaton’s during World War Two. She raised five children, three boys and two girls, while also being active in many social groups like Kinette’s and various bridge clubs.
Their children, Donald, Dennis, Judy, Jeri, and John would look forward to heading to the lake each July. They would spend hours at the beach playing with whoever was around. There were always kids up for a game of Hide n’ Seek or Cops and Robbers or tubing in the lake.
Dennis and his brother recalled being just down the road from the in-ground trampolines. A point of great pride for the Pike boys was that they helped dig out the large pits needed to install the trampolines. Jack bought a trampoline from the in-ground trampoline business owner. Dennis and Donald used their experience in digging the pits to dig a trampoline pit in the backyard of the cabin. Many feats of daring were attempted but surprisingly enough no serious injuries resulted. There has been an in-ground trampoline in the backyard ever since (over 50 years), which has brought joy to not only Jack's and Phyllis’s children and their friends, but their children, grand-children, nieces and nephews, and friends.
There were many happy gatherings of family and friends over many years at Pike’s Peek Inn. Sitting around the fire, playing with fireworks, which were a lot more fun and dangerous than the ones today, horse shoes, ping pong, nickel and dime card games, crib, and dart tournaments, are some of the great memories the Pike children have of summers at Ma-Me-O during their childhood and their early adult years.
In 2002, John Pike took over the family cabin and spent a great deal of time maintaining the property and "puttering." In 2005, John passed away which is when his wife Norine, inherited the property. Since then, there have been many
more happy family gatherings.