From the Editor, February '23

By: Susan W. Smith

Volume 18, Issue 2, February 2023

This is not all about me . . . but when both my husband and I got Covid after a 30-minute visit with our granddaughter and family, I have to say that we were stopped cold in our tracks. They, too, had no idea that they had it at the time, so it was just one of those things. I have to say though, I’m not sure that I agree with the statement “it was just like a bad cold.” However, now that it’s over and I am back to my 'to do' list, please do not underestimate this disease or treat it lightly. It is still causing hundreds of deaths each day. We were not able to take Paxlovid because of other medications we take, so lots of rest, lots of liquids, and lots of feeling sorry for ourselves seemed to do the trick. My advice is to be prudent and to remain cautious.

Winter weather – remember that bouncing ball over the lyrics for a sing-a-long? Well, the thermometer in the Thousand Islands was doing just that – on one miserable Friday (February 3rd) in Kingston it went from -2°C/28°F to -32°C/-25°F during the daytime. Lots of events were cancelled in the region, including in Ottawa, where the extreme cold delayed opening day events for  the annual Winterlude activities, and caused closure of skating on the Rideau Canal.

The Gananoque Police Department placed this photograph on their Facebook page, saying," 29 January at 10:06 · Police received a report of a polar bear on South Street, investigation revealed he was friendly and will most likely disappear when the weather gets warmer." [Good one for sure!] 

Winter Storm Memories

Soon after we published our January issue, Melanie Hertzog, our 2022 Gold Medal Photo Contest Winner, sent this comment:

I read your article about the Christmas storm. What crazy ice photographs of the summer homes in the Admiralty islands! Our docks were piled high with twisted ice formations. We are near Eel Bay and our waters were stirred up with sand and sediment, leaving our shorelines covered in this gray-tan ice. I haven't seen that before.
We were so relieved when our son and daughter-in-law made it from Rochester – the storm heavy on their heels on Friday the 23rd. We retired to bed with the wind at full scream – so reminiscent of that Halloween storm of 2019. The power went out at 2:30am, so we were up, firing up the wood stove to maintain the heat (we have a full house Mitsubishi heat pump system) and watching over it as it rose to full temperature. We were prepared with stored water, candles, charging stations, and a gas stove for cooking, even French Press systems for coffee, so we were fine. It's just that wind, howling straight off the River and through the giant oaks. It was wearing on our nerves.
Simon and a stocking stuffer! [Photo by Melanie Hertzog]
Our family proposed opening Christmas gifts a day early to keep our spirits up, so we began, but fortunately, just after we finished the stocking stuffers, power was restored so we were able to celebrate Christmas on actual Christmas! We did hear that the Canadian [Highway] 401 was closed, as well as our roads. We monitored the Aviation Weather Center radar to follow the unrelenting lake effect situation in the Buffalo south towns and along the eastern shore of Lake Ontario.
Lynda Crothers, Wolfe Island shared this "Red sky in the morning" photograph. She warned of high winds for the River.

Sad News

The River lost another fine champion this month, with the announcement that Dean C. Honeywell died on January 28, 2023. Dean was well known in Alexandria Bay; during his career, he worked as manager for the Edgewood Resort and Thompson Resorts, owned and managed the Redwood Hotel, managed the Watertown Golf Club, owned and managed Foxy’s Restaurant, was a supervisor for Carlyle Properties, based in Los Angeles, CA, and then managed the Ship Motel until he retired. Along with his wife, Lou Ann, he was awarded the Hospitality and Tourism Award by the Alexandria Bay Chamber of Commerce in 2013. Dean was an active member of the Alexandria Bay Lions Club, former president of the Alexandria Bay Chamber of Commerce, a founding member of the Alexandria Bay Minor Hockey Association, and the Redwood Fire Department. The family has created a photo memory video, which is available on the Costello Funeral Home web page. It is difficult to thank an individual for so many years of community service. Suffice to say he that was an active and much appreciated River Rat.

Winter Events

Thursday, December 1, 2022 – Saturday, April 15, 2023:

Now through April 15, 2023, take part in at least 8 winter outings in the Tug Hill Region and we’ll send you a Winter Fun Challenge Patch or Decal to congratulate you on your accomplishment! Hike, Snowshoe, XC or Downhill Ski, Sled, Tube, Mush, Fat Bike, and more.

Saturday, January 7, 2023 – Saturday, March 4, 2023, 11:00 am – 12:00 pm:

Every winter the Nature Center builds a bird feeder station to help the wintering bird population. Birdseed will be provided to feed the birds. Our feathered friends may even land and take seed from your hand, or your head! All ages are welcome.

Saturday, January 14, 2023 – Saturday, March 11, 2023, 9:00 am – 2:00 pm:
Gear up – for free! Take a pair of snowshoes out on our trails and explore winter! Weather permitting: seven inches of snow is needed to take our snowshoes out on the trail. Please call for conditions. Visit the Nature Center during open hours to sign out your shoes.

And this one you will not want to miss if you are in or near Brockville, ON. This fundraiser is in support of the Aquatarium's Animal Care Program. 

GANANQOUE CANADA 150 RINK, Thursday Feb 16th: 2-hour FREE skate at the Canada 150 rink with Alyn McCauley and Todd Gill. 4:30 – 6:30 pm, brought to you by Gananoque Chev Olds.

BROCKVILLE WINTER CLASSIC WEEKEND. Friday, February 17, 2023 – Monday, February 20, 2023: The Weekend features family skating, a free outdoor tournament, black and white gala, and the big game with local all-stars taking on the Toronto Maple Leafs Alumni on February 19.

By sure to check all community calendars so you can join in the fun.


Please leave comments or questions or send them to me to post (there is a glitch using some web browsers.)

If you are on the River's edge, please remember to take photos so that we can all see what Winter 2023 is like in the Thousand Islands!

Stay safe and well!

By Susan W. Smith, Editor,

And the TI Life Team:
Elspeth Naismith is the "Real Editor;” Georgia Barker, Dane Zabriskie, and Rick Taylor are our proofreaders. In addition, Jennifer Caddick has taken over social media; Beth Lavos is posting books; Marie-Anne Erki is our illustrator; and last but not least is Mike Cox, our IT Magician.

Header photo courtesy of: Andrew Kane, Feather in Flight

We have not forgotten you, Ian Coristine. When I posted the February issue, 2020, on the night of February 14th, I knew my great friend, Ian Coristine was dying. As soon as our February issue went online, we received tributes and prayers. Those comments published in Ian's Issue, March 2020, were appreciated first by Ian, as long as he could read them, then by his wife Lyne, his family and friends and by this editor. Each month we all work to keep Ian's instructions front and centre. He said to me that day, "just liking our little part of the Thousand Islands is not enough - we have to work together to Raise the Bar!" I think he would be proud of TI Life - I know I am, and I truly thank everyone who presents their material - for Raising the Bar, we are!

And to give you a lovely ending for this month's TI Life, we are pleased to present this recent special visit to Wolfe Island.

Our thanks Kingston's Aerosnapper for sharing this one with TI Life. Be sure to visit his Aerosnapper YouTube Channel

Posted in: Volume 18, Issue 2, February 2023, From the editor

Please click here if you are unable to post your comment.

Submit an Article

Do you have an article you would like to submit? Click here to participate.