Monday, August 9, 2010

Boats, Boats and More Boats at Singer Castle, Dark Island!


On a warm summer evening the castle came alive with light and music. People could be seen moving about on the terrace and through the windows of the Drawing Room, Dining Room and Breakfast Room. Lights reflected off the waters of the St. Lawrence and boats rocked gently at all of the docks. Some were even moored to each other.

Island neighbors asked each other: Where had all the large boats come from? What was happening at the castle? Did you see all the lights? Isn’t it exciting! The island and castle must have looked much like this when the Bournes or the Thayers were in residence. Friends were invited to come over after a day of boat racing on the river and the voices of young people would echo over the surrounding water. Of course the boats were not the same.

The boats, most between 35’ and 50’ in length but as large as 65’, were at Singer Castle for Aquapalooza 2010 – A group cruise from Hurst Marina in Mantiock, Ontario near Ottawa with a stop at Singer Castle on Dark Island for the evening on their return trip to Ottawa. Twenty-two boats in all with 72 passengers tied up at the island’s docks so that they could experience the wonders of the Gilded Age Hunting Lodge built by Frederick Bourne, Commodore of the New York Yacht Club. The Singer Castle staff members greeted these guests much as the Bourne’s staff would have welcomed guests to Dark Island, assisted them in tying up, escorted them up the Bridle Path to the front doors and then through the Great Hall and up the broad staircase to the Drawing Room, Dining Room and Breakfast Room where dinner and entertainment awaited them.

This dispatch was received directly from Dark Island today. Photo and article by Jean Papke (Assistant to the President of Singer Castle, Tom Weldon). Photo was taken Aug. 1, 2010 (click on it to see it in large size).