What happens on the Isle of Springs? During the busy summer, there are many varied activities we participate in … something for everyone! We…Ride the Ferry: The 3:00 on Friday had to make two runs to accommodate Islanders. Betsy Morrell and Brad Booth were greeted by two very vocal, happy little dogs, Winnie and Ruth. (Brenda Bowen and Michael Smith, who are settling into the former SOB cottage on the top of the Island, made room for them along with Mike Curato who writes the “Little Elliot” books.) Jason and Kateri MacGilvra with sons Quinn and Connor sped off to their cottage. Bob Esterberg returned. Max and Finley arrived for a bit at our Sturgis Corner Cottage. And Cece Vayda heralded the return of her family: Parents Jack and Patty, sister Allette and wife Mandy, and sister Serena and son 4-month old Miles.
Jim Morrell was headed to Unc’s but let me know that son Evan and friend Zoe were arriving on Friday just ahead of Jessie Polackwich and family on Saturday. His sister Debbie and husband Alan Polackwich are in the Farmhouse (we are missing Eleanor and Dick this summer) and hosted the 5th Annual 1969 Thornton Academy Reunion which included 10 graduates with spouses and other hangers on. Patty Ridlon returned with son Aiden who’s been winning sailboat races and having fun at the Southport Yacht Club. Friend of Patty, Quinn, and her family gathered to celebrate having all the Bryans together in the Richardson Cottage. Other long-time friends of Patty and Ian, Saskia and Korne (who took our 125th Anniversary picture on the Ridlon lawn in 2012) figured out that they have been coming for more than 20 years!
One morning, at the 10:00 ferry, I noticed Peter and Milena McClennan were headed out to Camden to hike Mt. Battie, but Marta and George opted to stay home. Others were sporting shopping bags and/or trash and recyclables.
We also Welcome Family and Friends: Jenny Mackenzie hosted Maddy and Asa, Lizzie and friend Christian of Maryland. They also made room for Jenny’s friends Dave and Jeremy and son Miles. At our cottage Scott and I welcomed Scott’s sister Kim and Matt Gogan, of Colorado Springs, CO, with kids Rachel and Katie from Somersworth, NH and Matt’s sister Diana Hamel of Milan, NH with great nephew Cole Hopkins. We were joined by long-time family friends Liz and Mikayla True of Sedgwick, ME (who were able to check “stay on an island” off their summer bucket list.) They left on the 10:00 ferry on Thursday to make room for the Rob Ayer family who had spent the first part of the week at the Bogart Cottage. They included Kate and Cormac with Tegan (5) and Brennan (3), Emily and John with June (3) and Shep (1) and Kimberly. Matriarch Peggy Ayer rode up from CT with Alison and Mike Potts and Sarah and Tim Ayer took a break from the farm and arrived on Thursday. At Will and Patsy Mackenzie’s they hosted Bob and Linda Rogers and then award-winning playwright Bruce Norris and friend Caroline Wood.
Roland, Judy and Eric and Lija Miller welcomed Eric’s wife Drea and younger daughter Anna and friend Lela. No Skye to walk every morning this year. Over at the Nash/Burvill Cottage we find Walter and Joanie Faccenda with son Tony along with daughter Juliana, husband Ethan and 6 month old Isabella, or Izzy with the Big Eyes! Pat and John Ridlon are enjoying Pat’s nieces Kristin and Lauren. Edna Stoddard is in residence with daughter Linda Harper and son Mark, and I saw a picture on Facebook with them sitting on the steps with David’s daughter Shealyn’s sons. David’s daughter Keenan also made an appearance. Julie and Joel Rozen with sons Tucker (13), Myles (10) and Max (8) are in the Hutchinson Cottage awaiting the return of Scott and Will and Alan and Ruska.
Sometimes we just Hold Down The Fort. Tom and Diane Thomas had a houseful of kids and grands, but they left so now they have time for laundry and painting the deck! Deborah and Arthur Pierce are keeping company with Elizabeth’s dog Griffin. Rob and Susan Reece have been alone (!) this week at their cottage until Cam, Ellen, Charlie and Will return, but Evan, Annie, Marley, Barrett and Porter are in the Swift-Kelley Cottage and Duncan, Valerie, Gavin and Brody are taking a turn in the Dawes Cottage.
You can’t live on an island without taking time to Mess About in Boats. The Regan Whaler is all spiffed up with new bright work and a working bilge pump; Mark Harper was sanding and finishing the bright work on the Stoddard Whaler and was joined by a couple of squid scared into it by the hungry seals. He got rid of it and we got to watch some gulls fight over it! After many unsuccessful tries, the MacGilvra mooring has been recovered! Kim and Scott continue to make the waterfront working and pleasurable while they, along with Scott’s dad Denny, construct a winter cover for the skiff. The weather has been conducive this week so there has been much activity in the form of just plain boat rides for many.
Along with all this fun there is some work to be done so some of us also have to Attend Meetings. The Board of Directors are getting ready for the Annual Meeting this weekend by meeting themselves and holding a Town Hall meeting for the rest of us.
We get all kinds of Exercise around here, too. There are the usual suspects to be found on the tennis courts every morning, lessons for the kids given by Will Hutchinson, and family matches and practices going on the rest of the time. We have dedicated walkers and runners, too, including Glen McCandless who walks Bentley, Nancy and Greg Regan with their two German Shorthaired Pointers, and Griffin and Arthur, and Anne Morehouse and Mary Hulbert run and walk their dog Hannah. Of course there is gardening to be done, as well meeting ferries and hauling carts full of groceries and other sundries. Some of us even like to just walk around and check out our favorite paths and beaches.
Line Dancing is our latest reason to gather on Sunday mornings at the Casino. Jeanie Reed and Patsy Mackenzie have been keeping us on our toes and working our minds in a different way this summer. So far we’ve learned The Electric Slide, Seduced, Broken Stones and the Tush Push! Both good teachers, they are patient with us and we, young and old, are having a marvelous time. (I clocked 3200 steps in a one-hour session!) All proceeds go to the Tennis Association. And, speaking of proceeds, there is a FUNdraiser coming up on August 8 at 7 PM in the Casino. It’s a dance! There will be some special guests performing at the beginning, we’ll show what we’ve learned and then you can cut the rug with whatever steps you choose! Please BYOB, a shareable snack, a donation for the tennis court maintenance and your dancin’ shoes!
Sadly, we must occasionally Gather for Memorials. The Welty Family honored their dad, Jim Welty, at the All Saints by-the-Sea Chapel on Southport on Saturday. I actually saw Bruce and Eva, Asa and Maddy, Russ and Betsy and Nicole, but I heard that Zack Teves was also there. That must mean his parents Linda and On Sunday, we gathered at the Rydell Cottage to remember Lars Rydell who also passed away last summer. His son David and wife Karen of Panama City, FL, along with daughter Kate and friend Adrian of Brunswick, son Carl and friend Sarah of Lynchburg, VA, sister-in-law Katy Rydell of Portland, and Maddie Daughtry and her parents also of Brunswick invited us to share stories of Lars (and his brother Peter and mother Nan.) Mike Thompson with dogs Millie and Snopes were there and Mike Potts played one more concert of Lars’ favorites on the guitar.
We end our week with a Sunday Service. Alison Potts reminded us that natural beauty is important to all of us: we should embrace the many cycles, learn to reap nature’s bounty, enjoy animals, vegetables and miracles (with a reference to Barbara Kingsolver’s book), and, if we “see something, pick it up.” If we all picked up what doesn’t belong on the ground or in the water, every little bit of effort helps to keep our Earth healthy. Some favorite hymns were played on the organ and piano by Michael Smith. I also noticed Matt Bogart and Claudia Stevens who are in the Bogart Cottage along with Chase and Alexa. Joanne and Richard Phillips are back, too. I noticed Emma Morehouse-Hulbert was there with a friend, but I didn’t get his name. Also in attendance were the Garretts of Kansas City, KS. Kim, Mike Potts’ daughter, and husband Sean with children Jordan, Katherine, and Jackson are here for their bi-annual visit.