First baby born on South Shore fashionably late
The birth of Palmer Chaplin at 12:20 a.m. New Year’s Day was two weeks late in coming. But the delay allowed the boy to be first born in 1998 at Barton Memorial Hospital.
The 8-pound, 8-ounce, 22-inch son of South Lake Tahoe residents Carol and Scott Chaplin and little brother of 2 1/2-year-old Anders Chaplin, may also be the first baby born in the region. Thursday morning, the proud mother had spoken to news media from both Sacramento and Reno who had not found an earlier birth in their areas.
The proud dad, a 10-year Tahoe resident, works at Heavenly Ski Resort as the ski school supervisor and, in summer, as the tennis pro for the Zephyr Cove Tennis Courts.
Carol, a 15-year resident, works as director of resort operations at Tahoe Seasons Resort and is a member of the South Lake Tahoe Chamber of Commerce Executive Board of Directors. She was admitted to Barton’s obstetric ward about 7 p.m. New Year’s Eve and was the only contender for the first-baby-of-1998 title.
Due Dec. 19, Carol said the wait was worth it, although dad was hoping for the tax deduction.
“We’ve been ready for quite awhile,” she said. “I thought we were going for elephant-time for awhile.”
“She wouldn’t do the caster oil,” teased Dr. Kelly Shanahan, referring to the folk remedy thought to trigger labor.
Shanahan, who also delivered Anders, interrupted a quiet New Year’s Eve celebration for the honor of delivering the second Chaplin baby even though she was not on call that night.
Each year, South Lake Tahoe businesses put together a large package of treats for the First Baby of the Year. This year, 22 businesses gave gifts that included pampering for the proud parents, as well baby clothes, toys, accessories and a one-month diaper service.
Thursday morning, big brother Anders, who claims Palmer as “my baby,” had already broken into a big basket from the Barton Auxiliary to be sure the baby had a stuffed toy in his new world.
“Can I hold my baby?” he said in between mouthfulls of lunch.
Palmer just snoozed and yawned through all the hoopla.
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