Sunday, 30 September 2012

Camp Ooch and ACBS Fall Colour Cruise

If you look back to earlier posts you will see the great weekend the Kids & Classics volunteers had coaching 8 youth at Camp Oochigaeus in Toronto through building 2 of our Boats 4 Folks skiffs. K&C cecided that we would donate one of those skiffs to the Ooch summer camp once we had varnished and painted it up. This past weekend was the scheduled delivery date.

I planning the outing to Ooch we noticed that the ACBS Toronto Chapter was staging a new event called the Fall Colour Cruise - starting near Bala! Wow - right on our way to Ooch! So it was decided that we would trail Despina along and have a twofer day.

As the ACBS event was to begin at 9 AM, it meant an early start from the Glen Boatshop - 6 AM!

That big light? The Moon! Ready to go!
Interesting "Mist Lakes" north of Barrie.

Ray was the crew for this run and we arrived in Bala on schedule, launched and headed out to the rendezvous in East Bay. We were the first out there! But fellow Shepherdiste 'Pete' Laurence and his wife Pierrette soon joined us! Eventually somone came along who knew where we were supposed to be!
Second arrival!
Ray at the helm!

Lots of pictures!

Boats gather at the marina harbour.

The Fall Colour Cruise was a touch short of fall colour although the overcast probably accounts for some of this. The damp above didn't affect the boaters however and we all had a great time. The route set up by leader Chris Bullen lead through small out of the usual route islands and was really lovely.

Shepherds ahead and behind!
Loved these old timey boathouses.

After a nice open water run up the lake we arrive at Dukes new incarnation in Pt Carling near the locks. First opportunity to meet and greet our fellow 'splinter boaters' and survey the other boats up close. These are real restorations! Some beautiful work on some beautiful boats.

Looking towards Duke's.
And the other way...

Pete and his nifty jacket...

George's fabulous 24' Shepherd

George Thompsons lovely 24' Shepherd may be the last of the 24's which are the rarest of the breed by far. After drooling over the fleet we checked out the reinvented Duke's premises..what a difference! level floors and everything. Downstairs there is now a cafe that opens to the boat slips that were full of Minets, Greavettes and a pretty Grew dinghy just like Scott's.

Part store and part shop - very nice
Very pretty Grew Dinghy

However upstairs was not to be outdone! The boatshop operation is going strong under Jeremy Fowler who was quite interesteed in discussing our kids-at-risk programmes and would like to see something similar in his shop. I was interestede in the layout of the shop and the lessons it may have for our own community boatshop...

long benches with storage under.
everything on wheels and adjustable.

After a lovely break Ray and I must head off to Bala, load up and head off to Camp Ooch - just as the drizzel really sets in! I suspect we had the best of the cruise...

Ray takes us through to Bala Bay
and the Ooch team begins to unload.

in spite of the rain we had a gracious reception at the camp and everyone loved the skiff. They had no idea that the skiff would turn out to be a thing of beauty! Once the kids have had time to eee the results of their work the boat will go into a building until spring. Sarah Nelles gave Ray and I a tour of the camp which is quite amazing and well thought out. They have their own lake and a complete waterfront.

carefully unloading the Ooch skiff

on display in front of the medical centre

a fully accessible waterfront

Monday, 24 September 2012

Despina looks at Niagara Falls!

Despina is parked out front of the boatshop on this 24th day of September but she has been busy!

On Sept 7 she ran over to the Humber Ramps and got loaded on our floating trailer for a trip to Niagara Falls! Scott, Gretchen and I headed for the Niagara Parkway. I had earlier found the Miller Creek Marina - across and around the tip of Grand Island from the Buffalo Launch Club and The ACBS frontier Chapter annual boat show - this year featuring Shepherd Boats! A real Shepherd Fest!

Despina and other Shepherds at Shepherd Fest
View of raceboat pits and Lighthouse!

Friday was overcast and it drizzled a bit but that evening the Chapter put on a great filet dinner where we met new folks and had a great time. Afterwards we headed to Tonawonda Creek in Despina with  new friends to see the entrance to the Erie Canal and some neat boathouses.

Saturday was overcast again and it did rain a bit in the morning but the afternoon cleared up and the raceboats got running - wonderful stuff! Despina was very popular and Scott and I had many interesting conversations!

Love Roostertails!
Antique fireboat makes a courtesy visit

there were many lovely cruisers
and Chris Craft was well represented

But Sunday was the day! Weather was OK all morning and the fleet headed off for the annual run around Grand Island - it was great! No-one went over the Falls, Rich Deglopper got lots of video footage from Miss St Laurence - including Shepherds running together..

Andy demonstrated local knowledge...
cameras are all out as we approach the Falls...

That would be Niagara Falls just there...
the fleet gathered and paused at the Falls

Here are a few more shots from Gretchen's camera...

 after the run the party broke up, with Despina headed back around the corner to Millers Creek, the trailer and home. This is a really great event - it would be cool to take more boats next year! During the event I ran into some ACBS friends including Pete Laurence & Pierrette who insisited they had some gifts for our boatshop if we could get together!