Gilligan's Island?

We seem to be deserted... about 90% of the population has taken off to see new sights.  This week it would have been possible to fire a cannon down main street and you wouldn't have hit anything.  For the remaining few, there have been an advantage... we can all get online with no problem.  However, while the majority are traveling we can't even receive postcards from them.  The fog is so thick that yesterday (April 2nd) there were no planes and having just come inside from walking the dog, today is looking to be about the same.

So where did they all go?  They went on cruises, they went on flights to southern climates, a few of them: Hilary Palmer, Ruth Arden, Colleen and Linda McDonough even went to Hawaii!  Our girls were just going to head to Traverse City to visit Mike and Jessica (their brother and his wife).  Put them on the plane at 10 am; got home and was enjoying a "quiet" cup of coffee when the phone rang.  It was Mike asking for permission to take the girls to the beach.  Joe was quicker and asked, "What beach?"  The response was Key Largo!  So for one pair of girls who have never been out of state, they are now swimming in the ocean and having a dandy time.  By the way, they ended up changing their minds and didn't go to Key Largo, instead they went to Fort Walton Beach, Florida.  Our youngest, 11, wants to bring home a palm tree and a bunch of hermit crabs.  Since we didn't know Mike and Jessica's plans prior to sending the girls off-island they weren't dressed for warm places.  Andrea wore her snow-mobile boots... think she's standing out in the crowds down there? Meanwhile, Mom and Dad enjoyed a few days of quiet - no arguments over bathrooms, or what movie to watch, or "she's looking at me funny" - it's wearing thin now.  Never thought we'd say it, but it'll be nice to have them home again.  Next spring break the plan is to have them clean their bedrooms (wonder where  Mike and Jessica will take them instead?).

Just a Reminder

For those of you in the Eastern Time zone don't forget to turn your clocks forward Saturday night, March 31st or early Sunday morning.  

Spring Break

Spring break begins today as soon as school lets out.  Listen to them all talking about their big plans for the next ten days... trips to Florida, Hawaii, cruises, you name it and someone probably has it on their itinerary.  Your kids come home from school saying, "...but everyone in my class is going..."   "Yeah, right," you respond along with that old adage your mother said to you when you were that age, "... and if they were all going to jump off a cliff would you want to also?"  Just as it did with you all those years ago,  that comment doesn't make points.  It's on par with "eat all your dinner, remember all those starving children in insert any 3rd world country here" when you knew quite well that by the time that liver on your plate was sent to where ever it would look like a science experiment gone crazy, besides it's common knowledge that the people of .insert any 3rd world country here don't like liver either.

So you're staying home with ornery kids who would much rather be frolicking on the beaches of some tropical place - heck who wouldn't?  But you make do with what you have, someone has to stay home to make sure that the island doesn't sink.  Here's some ideas to keep those kids entertained for the next ten days:

Kids on vacation have to suffer long drives with only telephone poles to count, right? Let yours count all the potholes from Whiskey Point to the South Head Light (that should keep them busy for a day or two or even three

Kids on vacation get to shop, right?  Take them to our local mall - McDonough's and let them do the grocery shopping

Kids on vacation get to go to the beach, right?  Tell 'em your taking them to a beach in the south and drive down to Iron Ore Bay, if it's warm take a picnic lunch

Kids on vacation get to go to the movie theatre, right?  How about renting a couple movies at The Station or McDonough's or even watching those old home movies you haven't seen in years.  Fix some popcorn and shut all the lights off... you have your own home theatre now.

Kids on vacation get to do neat things, right?  Since almost every home on the island now has a computer, check out geocities, tripod or homestead and let each child make their own personal website.  Those places have all the tools necessary without having to buy an expensive program and they give free web space.  Your kids will be able to show off what they did during vacation time.

There's lots to do around here if you look... hike the Kuebler Trail or any of the other trails; have a photo contest to see who can take the coolest picture showing spring on the island; go visit some of the older islanders and let them tell you some of their stories about when they were your age; if it turns really cold - below freezing - get some soap and let your kids blow bubbles outside and watch the bubbles freeze and shatter like glass; take them ice fishing on one of the inland lakes and have a hot dog roast for lunch out on the ice

If worst comes to worst there's always that old stand-by... clean your room.

There's always something to do and no reason for any kid who lives here to be bored.  So it's not quite as exciting as traveling, but sometimes just staying home and hanging out with family can be lots of fun if you make the effort.  Give it a try, you might surprise yourself.

A New Arrival

Scott and Heather (Gillespie) Barile of Chicago, Illinois are proud to announce the arrival of their son, McKinley Daniel.  McKinley made his appearance on March 16th at 5:38 a.m. and weighed in at 8 pounds, 7 ounces and 21 inches long.  

Happy grandparents are John and Jeanne Gillespie of Beaver Island; Barbara Barile of Long Island, New York; and Michael Barile of Rahway, New Jersey.  McKinley is also welcomed by his great-grandmothers: Pierette Barile of Fort Myers, Flordia; Ellen McLaughlin of New Jersey and great-grandfather Walter Wojan of Burt Lake, Michigan and Beaver Island.  Congratulations Scott and Heather and all of McKinley's grandparents!

The Fisherman's House

It's tough to miss when you walk or drive to the point, it stands out with it's coats of yellow paint like a grand old lady, the umbrellas on the deck resembling little peeks of petticoats.   Surrounded by a bright, white fence it's like looking into the past.  What is this place?  It's the Fisherman's House.

The house was once the home of Joe "Mafro" Sendenburgh and his wife, Bridget or "Bid" as she was referred to.  Joe was a long-time island fisherman and logger and Bid was a midwife and also worked for Lloyd and Eva McDonough at their store.  There are hundreds of stories about Joe Mafro, who was quite a character.  A favorite one is when he decided that he wanted to build an ice shanty but didn't want to stand out in the cold to it.  He built in on the glassed in front porch and when Bid kept saying it wouldn't fit out the door, he poo-pooed her.  Now Joe Mafro was small in stature and as a result the ice shanty wasn't too big.. shouldn't pose a problem getting it out and across the road and onto the harbor, but like most great plans it didn't work out quite that way.  The shanty, although certainly not large, was too big to squeeze through the door to the outside no matter how it was turned.  Joe had to remove the door from it's hinges and remove a couple windows to get it through.  You have to wonder if Bid said, "I told you so."  By the way, that ice shanty is now part of a display at the Marine Museum just down the street from Joe's old home.

The property was originally sold to Paul LaBlanc by Frederick Butts in 1900 for the whopping big amount of $75.00.  Paul's widow sold it to Joe Mafro is 1926.  After Joe's death in 1981 it went to Anna Marie Ricksgers.  In 1991, Jon and Sally Fogg became the owners.  They in turn sold it to Bill and Tammy McDonough in 2000 after having completely remodeled the interior.

New hardwood floors, antiques mixed with new materials and textures along with bright colors make the Fisherman's House just as eye-catching inside as it is from the outside.  Each of the four bedrooms is decorated in a different theme from teddy bears to sailing.  The kitchen has been modernized with all the latest appliances including a Jen-Aire stove.

Sitting on the white wickered furniture in the glassed in porch looking across the harbor it's easy to feel as though one has stepped back in time.  You almost expect to see ladies and gentlemen pass by on the sidewalk with parasols and top-hats on their way to the point.

The Fisherman's House is now available as a weekly seasonal rental.  If you're interested, contact Bill or Tammy McDonough at 231-448-2499 or email them at   .    

Thank You

I would like to thank all the islanders again for their prayers for my recovery after my stroke.  Here is a little update on my recovery.  I ended up with a rotator cuff tear, causing a frozen shoulder.  I go to rehab twice a week, hopefully the pain will go away with a lot of work.  The stroke left me weak on the left side, I walk very slow and careful.  I am getting along fine with help from my wonderful husband.  Thanks again for all the prayers and cards.

Bertha Danaj


Beaver Island Community School

37895 Kings Highway, Beaver Island, MI 49782

(231) 448-2744 - phone (231) 448-2919 - fax

I. The bidder must include costs for the following items in their bid:

a. cost of removing old roof down to roof board;

b. cost of properly disposing of old roof materials;

c. cost of properly cleaning work site;

d. cost of applying water and ice shield on eaves and valleys;

e. cost of applying 15 lb. felt over remainder of roof board; cost of applying all necessary flashing;

g. cost of applying standard 25-year asphalt shingles; and

h. cost of applying electrical heat tape in valleys.


Bidder is responsible for relying on own measurements.

Bidder must show proof of Worker's Compensation Insurance and General

Liability Insurance.

Work must be completed by August 1, 2001.

Sealed bids must be received in the school office by 10:00 a.m. on Friday,

April 27, 2001.

For More Information contact: Kitty McNamara, (231) 448-2744 or

Beaver Island Community School is an Equal Opportunity Employer.
Beaver Island Community School reserves the right to accept or reject any or all bids.

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