2009-05-30 / Columnists



Memorial Day weekend on Mackinac was beautiful, with blue skies, warm temperatures, and the ferries bringing many visitors. Main Street became busy as folks enjoyed our magical Island. Shops, restaurants, hotels, horse companies, and bicycle rentals welcomed the business so early in the season.

Monday, May 25, was a crystal clear Mackinac day, when folks gathered at the Veterans Memorial in the City Park for the Memorial Day service at 11:30 a.m. Armand "Smi" Horn was master of ceremonies. Mary Slevin sang the National Anthem, followed by Meadow Greenlee, a Mackinac Island Girl Scout, leading the Pledge of Allegiance. The opening prayer was offered by Father Jim Williams, Lt. Commander in the U.S. Navy (retired), and former pastor of Ste. Anne's Church. Welcoming remarks were made by Mayor Margaret Doud. The guest speaker was William Porter, a United States Army World War II veteran, who gave a moving talk about the history of Memorial Day and different conflicts. Post Commander Paul Wandrie of Chapman, St. Onge, Dankowski American Legion Post 299 addressed the crowd about the Mackinac Island veterans. Flowers donated by Delbert Bunker were presented to the children of the late Bernice Bunker, the mother of Louie Bunker, veteran of the Korean conflict. Her daughters, Alice Bloswick, Lulabelle D'Arce, and Irene Rickley, were there to receive the flowers. Bernice also was the mother of Tom and Ike Bunker and Helen Dixon.

Families of the three Mackinac veterans, Joseph Chapman, John St. Onge, and James Dankowski, who were killed in action, were also in attendance. Flowers were placed at their memorial, as a special song was played about the Vietnam Wall in Washington, D.C. Mr. Wandrie also presented the new Chapman, St. Onge, Dankowski Post 299 flag. The Reverend Vincent Carroll, Captain of U.S. Navy (retired) and pastor of Little Stone Church, offered the closing prayer. "Taps" was played by the Mackinac Island Historic State Park bugler and the flag was raised to full staff by members of Post 299. It was truly a moving and impressive service and a fitting tribute to those killed in action, and all of our veterans.

Jim and Susan Lenfesty of Minnesota enjoyed the weekend at their lovely cottage on the East Bluff.

Friday, May 22, 10 young men and women were graduated from Mackinac Island Public School. Music was provided by Dan Seeley, as the graduates entered the big gymnasium filled with family and friends. Valedictorian Fuller Cowell addressed his classmates and guests with thoughts about the past and present. Robert Chambers presented school secretary Barb Fisher with a plaque of appreciation for helping the class throughout their school years. Father Jim Williams, former pastor of Ste. Anne's Church, explained to the graduates that they are entering a changing world. He also spoke about how important the Mackinac community was to every student and prepared them for their journey in life. Diplomas were distributed by Ben Mosley, president of the board of education, and Superintendent Roger Schrock.

Family and friends gathered from far and near Saturday, May 23, at Community Hall to wish the graduates well on their new adventures. Andrew Doud catered the event, and Annie Lockwood provided a cake . Best wishes to all of the graduates.

Happy birthday to Gene Hagenbaugh June 3. Have a great day.

Looking down across the harbor this past weekend, one could see many yachts were in the marina. It resembled a scene in July or August, very picturesque, with Round Island in the background and the Arnold ferries arriving and departing.

Congratulations to Ollie Boynton of St. Ignace on receiving the 2009 St. Ignace Ambassador of the Year Award. Island friends send best wishes.

Donnie and Gracie Francis returned to Mackinac Wednesday, May 20, from their winter home in Punta Gorda, Florida.

Happy 34th wedding anniversary May 24 to Pat and Mary Ann Shannon. They met on the Island, so it was truly a Mackinac romance. They enjoyed the weekend at their cottage in Trillium Heights.

Brother Jim Boynton and Deacon Dean Hermann and his wife, Vicki, visited Ste. Anne's Church over the holiday weekend. Deacon Dean and Vicki will move to Mackinac Monday, June 15, where he will assist Father Rey Garcia at Ste. Anne's.

We are pleased to report that Snapper Bazinaw has returned to his home in Harrisonville after a recent stay at Northern Michigan Regional Hospital in Petoskey.

Happy 21st wedding anniversary to Steve and Julie Rilenge May 20.

Caroline LaPine and Gwen Bagbey enjoyed a great vacation visiting Caroline's brothers, Tracy in California and Clareton in Oregon.

A delightful concert was held Sunday, May 24, on Windermere Point by the Air Force Jazz Band. They entertained a nice crowd and the day was picture perfect.

The Steve Harpers from the Detroit area spent Memorial Day weekend at Grand Hotel. They will return for a six-week stay at the Allen cottage on the East Bluff later in the season.

Sunday, May 24, I went for a wonderful ride with Buck and Alice Sharrow, who work for Mike and Wendy Young, caring for the beautiful horses, Prince and Lady. The Ed Clark family from Fortville, Indiana, guests at the Windermere Hotel, joined us. We drove past Grand Hotel, where the tulips are in full bloom in colors ranging from pale yellow to deep red, and all the American flags are blowing in the breeze. It was a breathtaking sight. We continued on up past the West Bluff cottages, through the Annex, Stonecliffe, Woodbluff, British Landing, and the East Bluff. The scenery was just beautiful and the woods were filled with trilliums and forgetme nots. It was a wonderful afternoon.

Phyllis Dunham of Topinabee is enjoying her King cottage on French Lane. Her friend, Wayne Jungman, had the misfortune of fracturing his ankle, so he is not able to visit the Island.

Dr. Richard Hodgman of Kalkaska was the doctor in residence on the Island for 10 days. He was joined by his wife, Karen, and daughter, Mary Deb, and family.

Enjoying the weekend at their lovely Easterly Cottage on the east shore of the Island were Brian, Candi, and Claire Dunnigan from Grass Lake. Their son, James, had arrived earlier and is employed at the Inn at Stonecliffe. James will be a sophomore at Lake Forest College in Lake Forest, Illinois.

Sunday evening, May 24, Joe Komspi fell on his dock at his cottage on Bois Blanc Island and needed medical attention. Through the efforts of Fire Chief Dennis Bradley, he contacted firefighter Larry Rickley Jr. and Captain Dan Wightman, who went over to Bois Blanc and brought Joe back to Mackinac, where his wife, Rosemary, met him at the Mackinac Island Medical Center. He was treated by Dr. Richard Hodgman and staff for a dislocated shoulder. Everyone helped Joe in his time of need. This is truly a Mackinac story.

Kristi Graham will celebrate her birthday June 3. I'm sure little Penelope will help her blow the candles out.

The Fred Brodeur family of Traverse City spent Memorial Day weekend visiting the Tony Spata family, Tony Brodeur, his grandfather, Dennis Brodeur, and Leanne Brodeur and family.

Congressman Bart Stupak and his wife, Laurie, entertained their son, Ken, and his fiancée, Cristina, and her family from California over the holiday weekend on Mackinac. Ken and Cristina will be married Saturday, August 29, at Ste. Anne's Church.

Ste. Anne's Church was very busy, both Saturday, May 23, and Sunday, May 24. Father Norm Dixon was the celebrant, replacing Father Rey Garcia, who is visiting family in Iowa. A very special Memorial Day service was held at Little Stone Church Sunday, May 24, with members of Chapman, St. Onge, Dankowski American Legion Post 299 in attendance. Services were also held at Trinity Church and Mackinac Island Bible Church.

Brian and Barbara Hellis of Northville returned to the Island Thursday, May 21, and are enjoying their cottage on Market Street. Happy birthday to Brian May 29.

The Mackinac Island State Park Commission met Friday, May 22, in Mackinaw City.

The Mackinac Island Police Department will have its annual bicycle auction Saturday, May 30, at 10 a.m. There should be lots of good deals.

Happy wedding anniversary to Ron and Mary Dufina June 3. Enjoy your day.

Tom and Phyllis Corrigan of Chicago enjoyed the holiday weekend at their lovely home on Lakeshore Drive.

We are happy to report that Dean Gillespie Sr. is doing much better and has returned to his home in Hessel. Best wishes from Island friends.

The David Levy family spent the holiday weekend at their lovely cottage on the East Bluff.

There was a Mackinac Island Community Foundation meeting Tuesday, May 26, at the Mackinac Island Medical Center.

Chair Kathy Lewand and her family enjoyed spending time at their cottage on the East Bluff.

Glenn and Deana St. Onge of Remus spent the weekend visiting their son, Jason, at his home in Stonecliffe Manor. Glenn remembered me with a beautiful bouquet of lilacs from their home in Remus. The fragrance is wonderful.

Happy birthday June 6 to Sarah Wessel and Cory Kaminen. Have a great day.

Following a very long, cold winter and lots of use of our snowmobiles, everyone is excited to be able to enjoy riding bicycles around the Island in the springtime.

Special greetings to Frank Allen and his wife, Aileen, of Denver, Colorado. Island friends send best wishes.

The Mike Corrigan family of the Detroit area spent the weekend at their cottage on Mahoney Avenue. It was great to see you on the Island.

Best wishes to Karen and Gary Lennard, who celebrated their 34th wedding anniversary Sunday, May 24.

Larry and Kay Berke of De Kalb, Illinois, have returned to their cottage for the summer. It's nice to see you back on Mackinac.

Dr. Fran and Lorna Straus left Mackinac Tuesday, May 26, for their home in Chicago. They will return Monday, June 15, for the summer.

Happy birthday June 7 to Betty BeDour of Mackinac and Rosie Charnes in Indianapolis, Indiana. Have a wonderful day.

Louie and Angie Bunker of St. Ignace attended graduation festivities Friday, May 22, and Saturday, May 23, for their grandson, Darcy Brodeur- Bunker.

Jim and Laurie Bradley of Green Bay, Wisconsin, attended graduation Friday, May 22. They visited family and friends on Mackinac.

We send best wishes to Bertha Green, who is a patient at Cheboygan Memorial Hospital in Cheboygan.

Enjoy your week!

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