New Bedford Day Brings Untold Stories of Gold Bond Powder and Silmo Syrup
New Bedford Day 2023 in sunny Fort Myers, Florida provided a little bit of something old and something new for more than 300 people in attendance.
Everyone talked about their fondest memories of the Silmo Coffee Syrup that Ian Abreu had for sale.
Former New Bedford Elections Commissioner Roberta Dow and her husband Ronnie reminisced about the "old days" when Silmo Coffee Syrup was a perennial favorite around their household.
"We did a double take, not expecting to see it here at New Bedford Day. It brought back such great memories of when our kids were growing up," she said.
The Dows are an elite part of the original group of snowbirds who haven't missed one New Bedford Day since it began 20 years ago.
"We got to see a lot of friends we hadn't seen in a long time, and it makes us feel we're home," she said.
The Dows have a beautiful home in Englewood, Florida, "and we only come down here for the winter. New Bedford is home to us, that's for sure," Dow said.
The annual social meetup also serves as a prime opportunity to hear untold stories. For Gerald Goldrick, it's ironic that his first job was with Gold Bond Powder.
"This was in the '60s. My dad, Tim Goldrick, who's long gone now, was in charge of maintaining the Gold Bond building off of Main Street in Fairhaven, where the product was originally made," Goldrick said. "It was up to us to clean up and leave things immaculate. I just remember going in, smelling the pungent powder that burned the inner linings of my nose and made my eyes tear up."
Goldrick said they had to clean spotlessly all the powder's dust and fine particles off the floor and equipment.
"One of my fondest memories is me, with only a driver's permit, learning to drive by taking my dad to work at night, so I could work with him, until I got my license a year later." Goldrick said, noting that was 65 years ago. "I still use Gold Bond to this day."
Sounding more like a pitchman for the product, Goldrick jovially said, "Gold Bond is the best ever. I use it, my dad used it, and I hope you all use it."
New Bedford Day is always the second Tuesday in March. See you next year!