Memories of Summer 2018

by Kayleigh Hindman, Operations Manager

The end of the year is almost here and as I sit in the verandah avoiding the paperwork I need to do, I look over the lake and think of the drastic change we’ve had from summer to the winter ice that now coats vast Stoney Lake. Although it seems like a distant memory at this point, I can’t help but to think back to the warmest day of summer and have myself a good laugh.

It was hot. It was so hot you wouldn’t believe how hot it was. Ben was off somewhere enjoying his car air conditioning and I was left alone on what can only be drastically over exaggerated as the hottest day of summer. It was just after Labour Day and I had openly decided I was going to shirk some responsibilities for awhile (#treatyourself). So I did what any reasonable resort staff member would do… I stole my boss’s boat.

If you’re going to keep reading, I feel I should take the chance to defend myself a little. I’m actually pretty smart (in the next few paragraphs you’re going to doubt this) and fairly reliable (you’ll doubt this too).

But what exactly did my smart self do while grandtheft-boating? I changed into a bathing suit I keep in my car, located my boss’s boat keys, and informed our amazing front desk team that I was running away and if I didn’t return not to worry about it… then I ran back to the office and plugged in my dying phone. Next, I untied the Boston Whaler, hopped aboard, and headed out to the middle of the lake. I spent an hour jumping off the boat, swimming around, splashing about, chasing the boat, and repeating before a harsh wind started to blow and I decided, begrudgingly, I should probably be doing my job.

So I climbed back on board, folded in the swim ladder, did a quick check to make sure I hadn’t lost anything, and threw my uniform back on (to deny that this mid-day sojourn ever happened). I started the boat as the wind got rougher, and thought to myself, “if I capsize Ben’s boat I am doomed.” I decided to motor out and make my turn back to the resort between a couple islands to break up some of the waves – see, I said I was actually pretty smart! Halfway through my turn I was hit by a massive wave. Who knew Stoney got tidal waves? Not me! And then the engine made a terrible beeping noise and suddenly cut out…

I put it in neutral and tried again – life for thirty seconds then nothing more – so I try again, and again, and again. It sputtered to life, beeped, died, and I repeated the cycle. Thinking back to my boater safety course, I grabbed the canoe paddle. Turns out I couldn’t exactly reach the water, nor could I really paddle a Boston Whaler with a canoe paddle – physics wins this round. So I sat there, pouting, as the waves pushed me towards a very, very, rocky bay. Using my recently useless paddle I managed to push myself away from the rocks and park the Whaler (it’s biggish boat) on a 4’ piece of dock. I jumped out of the Whaler, tied it as tightly as I possibly could to this itty bitty dock, and jumped out – now would be a good time to mention I left my sneakers on shore – to go looking for help.

First house, no one home, second house, no one home. I could hear kids playing in the next bay over but figured it might be wise to avoid terrifying small children at this point. I ran back to the boat thinking “clearly I’m doing something silly – maybe its not in neutral.” Started the motor – life for ten seconds – then the acceptance set in that I’m stranded two bays from work and ultimately doomed.

Suddenly, I saw her, this marvelous, lovely, amazing lady walking her dogs. I ran up to her and with little to no articulation introduced myself and explained the situation. She let me use her phone, so I called the resort, tell the front desk what happened, and sent them to get me another boating staff member to come rescue me. Meanwhile my savior and I got to talking and she says “Hey, I know a little about boats, want me to look at it?” Obviously, I said “yes, please!” so she grabbed a can of gas out of her garage and we headed down while discussing the first rule of boater safety (always bring a cell phone) and the ongoing hilarity of my situation.

On arrival at the boat, my new friend recognized A) my stolen boat is out of gas, B) it has a reserve tank, and she promptly hooked it up and as a team we managed to push me and the Whaler off the dock and into the lake. In unintended appreciation, I left behind one lonely canoe paddle that I informed her she could totally keep (if you’re reading this sorry about your paddle Ben).

As I came back towards the shore at Viamede, I saw the Sous-Chef waving at me from the dock; he helped tie me off then informed me he’s already called Ben and told him I broke the boat. At this point I started panicking – similar to when you throw a party in your parents’ house and they’re out of town and you’ve broken something – that kind of panic.

So I sat around, waiting, dreading the inevitable conversation. When Ben arrived back at Viamede, he asked what happened to which I responded “turns out you were out of gas” and he laughed so hard at me that I couldn’t help but laugh too. And this story of me getting ship wrecked is the highlight of my summer. The story I’ll tell everyone and the reminder of the importance of boater safety, cell phones, and the kind helpfulness of Stoney Lakers.

Winter Fishing

by Ben Samann, General Manager

As many of you know, I kinda like fishing. Kinda. In the spring, I go fly fishing for sunfish. In the summer, I cruise the lake for bass. In the fall, it’s muskie. A few times a year, I head to Bermuda to catch pathetically small fish off the dock. All told, I probably put in a few hundred hours a year fishing.

But now, it’s happened. Fishing is over, for a few months at least. I just got back from Bermuda, and the lake is frozen. Ice fishing holds little charm for me, so it’s time to hang my hat, and my fishing rods.

What do I do all winter? Aside from work, playing with Toby and Daisy, and getting to play with my aquariums? I keep myself excited by keeping my fishing gear in top shape. Come spring, I can grab it and go.

Here are the things I do annually, and if you like fishing, you should too:

Tackle box:

  • Empty and clean your tackle box – take out everything in there, and rinse the box. Make sure to let it air dry. Depending on the style of box, you may need a soft toothbrush to get into the corners.
  • Now that all your stuff is out of the tackle box, sort through it. Empty spools of line? Bits of plastic? Lures that were stuck in the same tire you caught? Throw out stuff you don’t need, wash the rest. Let it all air dry, then sort it back into the box.

Reel care:

  • Take a close look at each reel, give it a few spins and really get a feel for how it’s working.
  • Lube ’em up – go to a quiet room, and really listen and feel it. The mechanism should be smooth and quiet. If it’s not, pick up some reel oil (I use the pen type, which lets you carefully put single drops where you need them). Sometimes it’s internal, sometimes it’s in the top, or bottom, or wherever.
  • Rinse them off – use warm water, and maybe a drop of soap, to rinse off any grime.
  • Check your line – After a season out in the sun, the first 100′ of line are probably worse for wear. Strip that off, cut the line, then use a nail knot or similar to put new line on. (Tip: you will rarely need more than 100′ of line, and usually a lot less than that. You can spool a cheap “backing” line onto your reel for the bulk of it, and top it off with a premium line.)
  • Rods, nets, pliers, and other tools:
  • These mostly need a rinse and an inspection. Pliers may need a drop of oil if they’re a bit rusty


The most important thing: sort. Everyone has way more lures than they use, so really look at the lures you used this year, and toss the rest in a drawer.

  • I do a lot of different types of fishing, so I end up with a few tackle boxes. Why keep my carp rigs in my bass tackle box if I don’t even have my rods with me?
  • Check the hooks – A good sharp hook is the key to a lot of fishing. I buy hooks in bulk, and keep a close eye on rust, bent hooks, or even lures that came with cheap hooks. Saltwater destroys hooks and split rings, so I tend to replace these at least once a year, depending on use.
  • Pick up a small diamond hook sharpener and give a quick once over to every hook. I use a fly tying vise to secure the hooks, but you don’t need one. I test my hooks on my thumb nail – a sharp hook should scratch your nail with almost no pressure.

Important note: be careful when throwing out hooks. I use empty plastic bottles to keep them from puncturing the bag or getting jammed in someone’s finger. 

Other stuff: 

There are lots of other things I do to keep myself excited. I research new techniques I want to try, consult lake charts to find contours I might not know about, and keep an eye out for sales on common supplies (those people who have come out with me know all about my obsession with whacky rigs – I usually find the bait for 30% off in the winter).

One thing I’ve learned over the years, and enjoy forgetting – you don’t need every lure in the books. You need the stuff you enjoy using. There are always countless lures to be found that look good, and my wall of lures attests to how few I use – the ones on the wall don’t usually end up in a tackle box. But… look! that lure looks really good!

That’s about it.


You can follow Ben’s exploits on Instagram @BenSamann.

December Events in the Kawarthas

by Jill Persson, Marketing Manager

Whether you live nearby, or you’re just in the area for the weekend, we encourage you to get out in the community and revel in the season’s sounds, sights and experiences. There is so much happening in the Kawarthas this month, the only drawback is deciding which ones to attend!

Here is my round-up of happenings for December (there’s something for every age)!


Friday, December 7

In From The Cold Christmas Concert at Market Hall in Peterborough

8:00 – 10:30 pm

This incredible Celtic Christmas concert features instruments like the harp, concertina, guitar, fiddle, Irish bouzouki, tin whistle and bodhran and sung in gorgeous wraparound harmony. Proceeds support YES Shelter for Youth and Families.


Saturday, December 8

A Christmas Carol at Hutchison House Museum in Peterborough

2:00 – 4:00 pm

Charles Dickens “A Christmas Carol” is told by firelight in the museum’s historic Keeping Room. Dessert, coffee and tea will be served.


The Peterborough Symphony Orchestra: Home For The Holidays at Showplace in Peterborough

7:30 pm

This light-hearted holiday concert features seasonal favourites, a carol sing and the Kawartha Youth Orchestra!


Sunday, December 9

The Artisan Fair at Evinrude Centre in Peterborough

59 local artisans are selling a wide variety of handcrafted treasures. Free parking, wheelchair accessible, and guaranteed to cross some names of your Christmas list.


A Child’s Christmas in Wales / The Gift of the Magi at Hutchison House in Peterborough

2:00 – 4:00 pm

Dylan Thomas’ “A Child’s Christmas in Wales” and O. Henry’s “The Gift of the Magi” are told by firelight in the museum’s historic Keeping Room. Dessert, coffee and tea will be served.


Friday, December 14

Sing-A-Long Sound of Music at Showplace in Peterborough

7:00 – 9:00 pm

This is your chance to sing along to the most successful movie musical of all time! The movie will be shown on the big screen, and song subtitles are shown – make sure to warm up your vocal chords!


Little Britain Santa Claus Parade

7 :00 pm


Saturday, December 15

Peterborough Humane Society’s Christmas Open House and Bottle Drive in Peterborough

10:00 am – 2:00 pm

Drop in for some Christmas Cheer on December 15th from 10-2 and say hello to the animals in the care of Peterborough Humane Society. Support the bottle drive by bringing alcoholic bottles, cans, and bags.


Cuddles for Cancer Fundraising Tea Party and Luncheon in Lakefield

11:00 am – 1:00 pm

Christmas Tea and Luncheon to support Cuddles for Cancer and the True Meaning of Christmas Campaign. High Tea, presentation as well as a live and silent auction.


Victorian Christmas for Kids at Hutchison House Museum in Peterborough

1:00 – 3:00 pm

Get into the holiday spirit with special treats, hearth demonstrations, crafts, fun and more! Finish your Christmas shopping by checking out the selection of books and seasonal items in the gift shop.


Focus Fair Indie Holiday Arts and Crafts Sale, Peterborough

11:00 am – 5:00 pm

This year’s show features a wide variety of local artists offering handmade paintings, mixed media art, crafts, jewellery, cards, seeds, treats and more. Support local artists, shop downtown & make this a handmade holiday!


Monday, December 17

Peterborough Singers “Handel’s Messiah” at Emmanuel United Church in Peterborough

7:30 – 10:00 pm

Handel’s great work Messiah captures the joy and wonder of the holiday season and has remained popular since its first performance in Dublin in April 1742. Experience the power of 100 voices and the majesty of the mighty Casavant organ in this time-honoured celebration.


Thursday, December 20

Jingle Boots – The Big Yellow Boot Holiday Show at Showplace in Peterborough

6:00 pm

Join the entire Big Yellow Boot family – Splash, Boots, Charlie, Chef Brock Lee and our very own Jumping Jack Granny as they celebrate the HOLIDAYS!Jingle Boots is Splash’N Boots most interactive show yet, so dress in your best yellow and blue holiday gear and get ready to dance and sing along with holiday classics and Splash’N Boots originals!