Archive for Thursday, May 24, 2007

Secrets stay at beauty shop

May 24, 2007

With more than a half-century of experience, Caroline Camp is undoubtedly among the longest-tenured beauticians in Lansing.

Camp, who first opened a salon on Ida Street in 1950, has operated Caroline's Beauty Shop out of her home on Holiday Drive for the past 31 years.

Caroline Camp

Caroline Camp

She's seen hairstyles come and go, and with them, she's seen a lot of changes in Lansing as well.

Camp said when she moved to Lansing from Wichita in 1946, the roads were made of cinder.

"The town had so much soot from people burning coal back then," Camp said. "I got off the train with a white suit on with a big picture hat if that tells you how long ago this was and the coal got all over my dress. I tried to wipe it off and got a big black streak on my white dress.

"I told my friend, 'If I stay here longer than one month, I want someone to examine my head.'

"She ended up moving back to Wichita, though, and I'm still here. That's how things work out."

Like many hair stylists, Camp has heard a wealth of stories and has gotten to know certain Lansing residents extremely well.

She's learned to keep people's private lives private, however.

"I don't talk about anybody; I don't travel with tales," Camp said. "The thing to do when people ask is to say, 'Sorry, I don't know.' It's almost like a priest.

"My family's all grown, so my customers are like a second family to me."

One of her most loyal customers, Genevieve Krebs, has been coming to Camp for 45 years.

Krebs said, "She's very dedicated to her work and is a great friend."

NAME: Caroline Camp

ADDRESS: 412 Holiday Dr.

OCCUPATION: Beautician

FAMILY: Mary Lee Driscoll, daughter; Ben Lohman Jr., son; Michael Lohman, son; Kathy Jo Steinbach, daughter; Teri Siebold, daughter; Carol Ann Lohman, daughter; 11 grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren

HOW LONG HAVE YOU LIVED IN LANSING, AND WHAT BROUGHT YOU HERE? "I moved here in 1946. During the war, I worked at Boeing. After that they were cutting back, you know. : I had a friend that lived in Lansing, so I moved up here."

WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE THING ABOUT LANSING? "Everybody is a friend. They're true friends. It's been the friendliest place there could be."

WHAT DO YOU DO FOR FUN? "I sew a lot. I make lots of quilts. I've made almost all of my customers' families a quilt."

WHAT WOULD SURPRISE PEOPLE ABOUT YOU? "I'm still here still working."

WHAT'S THE BEST ADVICE YOU'VE EVER RECEIVED? "You can't be a friend if you gossip."

WHAT CLUBS OR ORGANIZATIONS DO YOU BELONG TO? St. Francis de Sales Catholic Church

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