The Caroga Chapel celebrates its 100th anniversary

The Caroga Chapel will celebrate its 100th anniversary on August 6.

CAROGA LAKE – Caroga Chapel will hold a special service on Saturday, August 7 at 10:15 a.m. with Rev. Laurie Garramone of St. John’s Episcopal Church, Johnstown as officiant. A reception will follow for a time to share photos and stories.

The concept of a summer chapel at Caroga Lake began with Sunday meetings taking place at various cabins on the Caroga Lakes prior to the summer of 1922.

Allen W. Johnston of Schenectady, owner of land bordering West Caroga Lake, offered lots large enough to build a chapel and parsonage worth about $1,000. On August 15, 1922, a certificate of incorporation was approved and signed by seven trustees with the name and title to be called Caroga Evangelical Chapel.

The construction of this chapel was completed at a cost of approximately $5,200 which included furniture and leveling of the land.

The dedication of the chapel took place on June 17, 1923 under the direction of the Reverend Fred L. Decker of the First Methodist Church of Gloversville. Two wings were added to the original chapel in 1939.

On March 29, 1971, the chapel was demolished after collapsing under the weight of a heavy layer of ice and snow.

The board immediately planned to build a new place of worship. It was planned by W. Randall Company Inc. and would be a single-story structure 40 feet wide and 48 feet long. The estimated cost was $22,000. On June 12, 1971, two-thirds of the new chapel was completed. On July 4, 1971, the new chapel was consecrated with 350 people present. The service was led by Reverend Albert H. Van Dyke with assistance from Reverend James Frost and Reverend Marc Andreae. Arthur Cane spoke on behalf of the board.

The chapel continues to host many visiting ministers and a variety of musical talent. The trustees’ goal is to continue this ministry to the summer residents of Caroga.

Many weddings and memorial services have taken place here.

Due to the generosity of summer worshippers, the chapel’s reach has grown in recent years by providing financial support for the North Bush United Methodist Church, Needy or Alone and Hungry (NOAH) mission in Johnstown, Wycliffe Bible Translators and Heifer. International.

In 2012 the Caroga Music Festival started performing in the chapel with just a few musicians. Now they have extensive year-round programming based on the site of the former Sherman Amusement Park. They will perform on August 5 at 7 p.m. at the Chapel with a program entitled CLMF returns to its roots: Caroga Chapel 100e Anniversary concert.

The Board of Directors hopes you will join us this celebratory summer! Services begin at 10:15 a.m. with old-fashioned hymn singing followed by general Protestant worship at 10:30 a.m.

Barry F. Howard