The Riley Family reunion began last Saturday with the family gathering at the gazebo at Frank Carpenter Memorial Park in Midway before they travelled to the family homestead on Norwegian Creek above the village.
When you look high up on the eastern slopes east of Midway you will often see the light from a lone homestead on the hill just south of the border. That was the homestead of Bill and Elleyn Riley who were married in 1912 in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho.
Five of the children were born on that hill above Midway at the Ferry homestead.
They then moved to Norwegian Creek in British Columbia. They lived there for about nine years before moving to Midway.
With a total of 14 children, eight boys and six girls (two of the boys died at birth), the family has roots on both sides of the border.
Bill and Elleyn eventually moved to Penticton where they resided until they passed on.
The Riley children were famous for running foot races. The family photo album carries a clipping from the Greenwood Ledge newspaper that told of a track meet once held in Midway where six Riley children entered in most of the events, running first 16 times and placing on nine other occasions!
The log house they returned to visit on Saturday was built in 1905 and is now the home of Phyllis and Chris Robb who have owned the property known as Norwegian Creek Ranch since the 1970’s.
The Riley reunion was organized locally by Linda Demchuk, whose mother Nettie was born in Ferry in 1920 and married to Arthur Louis Delisle in 1941.