From the Editor, May 2024

By: Susan W. Smith

Volume 19, Issue 5, May 2024

Sigh. It’s a week into May and where I live the leaves have suddenly come out, the dandelions are in their glory, and everyone has a smile on their face. It is warm, gardeners will appreciate the rain forecast for tomorrow, and Summer 2024 in my life has started.  

Kim Lunman says, "Welcome Back Harry! - Harry the Great Blue Heron has finally returned to our Bay in time for fishing season after a long winter down south."

Gananoque Children Get a Bundle

Local Canadian papers have a good news story about a group of volunteers who are helping to create food bundles for hungry kids. Be sure to check this out. As much as we think we live in a wonderful part of both Canada and the United States, there are still areas that could improve. Thanks to the Santa coming in July to Alexandria Bay, and, of course, the spirit of Christmas in December, it’s nice to see others helping – so perhaps you can help too.

Bruce Tusler shared this photo taken by his wife Charmaine Garno Tusler. We all look out for wildlife and these visitors came one morning at 8:00 a.m. in Chippewa Bay. 

Sad News - Zell Steever (1941-2024)

The Thousand Islands community was shocked and saddened to hear the news that Edgar Zell Steever V. passed away in Noank, Croton, CT, on April 15, 2024, at the age of 82.

Those are simple words to write at the start of all the obituaries, but for Grindstone Island, the Thousand Islands Land Trust (TILT), and for his wife Liz Raisbeck, these words are written with profound sadness. Over the past month, there have been many tributes written that must be shared with our readers. One can live a life as a good family member, as a good friend, or as a good neighbour, but often the words are platitudes. In the case of Zell Steever, they are "right on." I served with Zell for many years on the TILT board, and as a leader on TILT's first accreditation team, he helped make things happen. I put the following links here for you to see how much this gentleman meant to all of us.

From my photo album, Zell Steever showing off his skiff which hangs in his beautiful "Glass House" on Grindstone Islands. That day Zell and Liz hosted my friends as we toured the Winery. That is the smile we will all recognize.

Tributes: Legacy Obituary E. Zell Steever V.; from  Grindstone Island; and Aundré Bumgardner, Assit Majority Leader & State Representative, 41st District.

More sad news - Charlie Donevan (1924-2024)

Seeing the announcement on our Facebook page brought both a tear and a smile. Certainly this is how Charlie Donevan would like to be remembered, and remembered he will be. Over the years, Donevan's Store and this gentleman served as a hub for many activities. Those of us fortunate to have dropped in will acknowledge his jovial spirit and his wise counsel. We will miss you, Charlie. Thanks for everything.

Facebook Post from Donevan's Store on May 3, 2024

And Judith Pearson (1936-2024)

It is with sadness that I learned this week that River champion Judith Pearson, died on February 22, 2024, at her winter home in Naples, FL, surrounded by her four children. I was fortunate to consider Judith a good friend. We met when I stopped to interview Judy and her husband, Art, in 1975. They were on their island, Iwo Eden, in the Lake Fleet, and they showed me one of the most special island references. They had a guest book with the inscription, "When I have a better time, I will be in heaven."

The Pearsons told me that their Canadian island had been a favourite stop during the Prohibition days!  Judy and I stayed in touch, and she introduced me to the Cape Vincent Writers Inc. Judy and many of her club members have delighted our readers with submissions over the years. Please read her obituary

 A lovely picture of our friend, Judith F. Pearson, January 26, 1936 ~ February 22, 2024

Canadian Judge for Clayton Quilt Show

Bonnie Rankin will be on hand to judge the 2024 Biennial Quilt Show in Clayton NY, May 31-June 2. 

Canadian Judge Bonnie Rankin has been selected for 2024 Biennial Quilt Show to be held in Clayton, NY, from May 31 – June 2. The Every-Two-Years North Country Quilting Guild Show fills Cerow Recreation Park Arena in Clayton, NY, with quilts of all sizes and styles; demonstrations; vendors; and a silent auction of small quilted items to meet cancer patient needs across a four-county region. Hours for the 2024 North Country Quilting Guild Show are Friday and Saturday 10 am-5 pm and Sunday 10 am-4 pm. A $10 ticket is good for all three days. For more photos and information, visit the North Country Quilting Guild Facebook page.
Retirement North Country Quilting Guild Facebook page.

Lynda Crothers shared her photo with TI Life. 

Thanks Paul Harding!

This past weekend marked the final performance of the Gananoque Choral Society with Director Paul Harding at the helm. The Society presented a show of Broadway tunes on Friday evening and Sunday afternoon. After 30 years, Paul is handing over the baton to Anna Basten, currently the Society’s accompanist. Paul and David Grant started the group for a production of Handel’s Messiah, and just kept going. They’re always looking for new members, so if you love to sing, contact David Grant for further information (613-540-2248).
So . . . thanks for all the music, Paul!

If you still need a spring music "fix"

Come out to The Royal Theatre to hear The Royal Theatre Singers present "Happy Together," songs of the 1960's, under the direction of Kevin John Saylor.
Admission is by donation, for each of the three shows, which will be on May 30, 31, & June 1, at 7:30 pm. Royal Theatre Thousand Islands, 75 King St. E., Gananoque, ON

Steve Scherdin posted this photo of "Foxy's remodel" on 1000 Islands River Rats Now and Then, and it has received over 190 comments and 1.2L likes! The answer as to "where" was quickly given by Marie Chaltain: " Landing, Rt. 12, which is between Clayton and Alex Bay right on the the St. Lawrence River Waterfront!" Yes Summer 2024 here we come!


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

Remember we have a Call for River Recipes that can be sent to How about dockside cookies, evening cocktails, Sunday night dinner?  Come on, we need some inspiration for summer 2024!

And do you wish to assist TI Life by donating the price of a cup of coffee or a tank of gas? Support help us with updating software and supports our mailing program. We don't need a lot... but every bit helps. US residents: Support Link and Canadian residents:  Support Link.

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 handles social media; Dan Mathias posts events; Beth Lavos is posting books; Marie-Anne Erki is our illustrator; and last but not least is Mike Cox, our IT Magician.

Header Photo for May, 2024 is by Bill Fraser taken on May 16. He said, "Right place at the right time for showing the old and new!" The Viking Octantis was making her way through the Thousand Islands on her way to Toronto for a season of cruising in the Great Lakes.

Posted in: Volume 19, Issue 5, May 2024, From the editor, Photographs, Current

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