Analysis. History. Perspective.

Sports Then and Now

Where “The Babe” Vacationed After His Playing Days

Posted on September 30, 2012 by Joe Gill

The “Bambino” Was Here

My wife and I first visited the Cranmore Mt. Lodge for the first time back in November 2011. We decided to leave the corporate hotels/motels behind and decided to go with more of a country feel. From the moment, we arrived we felt right at home by Inn keeper, Frederique AKA “Freddie”. Right off the bat (pun intended), we felt more like FRIENDS of hers rather than just guests at her establishment.

We had a great time at the quaint and friendly country inn.

We decided to visit again this past March for a much needed getaway after some tough times. Freddie put us up in the “Babe Ruth” room which one of the bigger and MOST famous of the lodge. The walls are adorned with Babe memorabilia. Of course being a Red Sox fan this made me a bit uneasy having Mr. Ruth stare at me in his Yankees garb (Why Harry Frazee Why!) while we slept.

But I became quite intrigued about “The Bambino” and his history frequenting the Cranmore Mt. Lodge. Freddie was nice enough to send me some pictures and documentation about the inn’s most famous visitor and now here I sit writing this interesting tale. As you know about me by now, nothing gets my writing juices flowing more than local sports history.

How The Lodge Looked In The 40’s

Best place to start is the beginning of course, Babe Ruth started to visit the Mount Washington Valley back in 1939. He was an avid golfer and was asked to play in a tournament by Harry Gibson. Gibson was the then owner of the Eastern Slope Inn at the time.

During one of his golf trips, Babe Ruth took shelter at the North Conway Country Club during a thunderstorm where he met then Cranmore Mt. Lodge owner, Dick Flanders. Dick fell in love with the Babe’s daughter, Julia and they married in 1940.

The Babe Was An Avid Golfer & Would Frequent The Mt. Washington Valley

In this case, rain was extremely GOOD luck for the couple.

Babe would visit his daughter and son-in-law quite often for golf in the summer and deer hunting in the fall. Of course, he had a favorite room at the lodge. His pick of choice was room #2 which was located in the “octagon” wing due to it’s size and sunny demeanor.

The Ruth family made trips to the area until 1946 when Babe was diagnosed with cancer.

Babe’s daughter Judy went through a tough spell in the late 1940’s. Her father passed away in 1948 and her husband Dick Flanders passed away a year later. Julia ended up selling the lodge a year later, “It was just too much of an operation for me to run alone”, she said in an interview with The Conway Daily Sun.

The lodge has changed hands a few times since then, but still has maintained it’s rich history and country feel.

So if you love sports history be sure to visit the Cranmore Mt. Lodge and ask for the “Babe Ruth” room. You can actually stay in a living and breathing museum. How many people can say that?

Lodge owner Freddie Procyk and her whole family will make you feel right AT HOME and her ricotta cheese eggs on a croissant is to DIE for.

I wish they DELIVERED!

My wife and I CAN’T wait to go back.


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