I grew up in the coastal community of Cape Elizabeth which is a suburb of Portland, Maine.  I can vividly remember the fog horns at Two Lights and Portland Headlight blaring their warning to incoming ships in foggy or snowy weather.  In fact, in the winter, I would get very excited when the horns would blow at night, because there would probably not be any school the next day.  Yeah!  We could spend all day digging tunnels in the snow banks and building forts.  Back then, the secondary roads would be plowed, but rarely salted and sanded as they are today.  At times we could ice skate on the packed, frozen layers coating the street.  I can still the nostalgic hum of tire chains on cars going by.  And then there was the occassional rythmic clang-bang of a chain beating on a fender because a link broke.  We used to stay out so long that our our knitted mittens would be caked with balls of snow and our toes would feel like one degree above freezing.  We’d reluctantly come in and dry our stuff on the steaming radiators. When I was 10 or so, I recall “skiing” on “skis” that only had a leather strap to jamb the toe of your rubber boot into.  You could not turn the skis because your heel would just slip off the ski. Then someone invented leather bindings.  If you had those you were ready for the olympics!  Later metal bindings were developed but those required special boots.  Who could afford that luxury?  They became known as “bear traps” because there was no safety release in case of a fall.  Broken legs quickly became synonymous with skiing and gave the sport a bad reputation.  I broke a few pairs of skis over the years trying to navigate ungroomed “trails” that were well appointed with trees, rocks, and other non-skiable objects; but never broke a leg.  I decided that I would quit while I was ahead and vowed never to ski again! Years later, after I began working at Bell Labs, I became involved in a very active ski club there.  It was the social activity to be involved with as some 70 or so fellow emplyees would head off to the mountains nearly every weekend during ski season.  I met Helen at the Labs and convinced her that this was a fun activity and group.  Since I was “pretty fond” of her, I spent a fair amount of time “showing” her how to ski and not racing off to ski with the pack.  She was a quick study, and has turned out to be an excellent skier. Since we both enjoyed skiing, after we got married we continued to ski a fair amount.  Through a series of acquaintances we were invited to join friends for a weekend at the little known ski area in Western Maine called Sunday River.  Well, that snowballed into a land purchase and two years later we began construction on what became an awesome investment.  Not just a financial investment, but in a wonderful family/social investment.  Over the 30 or so years we have owned our little home in the mountains, we have easily had hundreds of friends and guests spend the weekend, vacation weeks, or just stop for a visit. 
Here’s some random photos of life at Sunday River
MAINE Life As It Should Be
Cunningham Family Web Site
Interested in some history of Sunday River? Here’s a link to an article published in the August 2, 1984 issue of the Oxford County (Bethel) Citizen.  Retyped and reproduced with permission. Here’s a link to an article that I wrote in 2001 about the history of Viking Village.