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News Archives 2014
(latest entry at the top, blog style)

For other years, please click here to go back to the News page.


10 YEARS FILA: Annual Meeting
FILA's 10th anniversary
Board Meeting of October 13, 2014
Harvest Festival 2014
Traverse City Schooner Fest 2014
Window Workshop
Voyage of Discovery
Lighthouse Party at Sandy's
End of Season for the Lightkeeper
Another load of sashes
Board Meeting of August 11, 2014
Port Oneida Fair
Second Work Trip -- finally
Suttons Bay Classic Boat Show
Board Meeting of July 14, 2014
Lightkeeper afloat
Board Meeting of June 9, 2014
First work trip of the season
MLA Conference 2014 etc.
SlickCraft Boat in the water!
Board Meeting of May 12, 2013
Board Meeting of March 10, 2014
DNR Friends Summit at Grayling

Board Meeting of February 10, 2014
Board Meeting of January 13, 2014

For other years, please click here to go back to the News page.  

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10 YEARS FILA: Annual Meeting

Our Tenth Anniversary celebration was both much anticipated and well attended with around forty persons at  the event. It was held at the Traverse Area District Library on Saturday afternoon, December 6th.

Only a blazing fireplace could have added more warmth as many hugs and smiles were passed. The "Finger-food Buffet" kept growing well into the party with many scrumptious delights brought, topped off by a cake especially made for FILA by Chimoski's Bakery in Suttons Bay.

Catherine Alchin gave a well-prepared Power Point presentation. She carefully covered the history of not only FILA but bits about the island's history, peppered with little jokes that kept the gathering smiling.

We all look forward to another fruitful ten years in working together saving "that little Light we all love," (a famous quoting of a well-known FILA member; name withheld by request).

FILA birthday cake
 Birthday cake.

 John Nelson and Anne McKinney.

 Run on the buffet.

Jeff Broderick and John McKinney.   

 FILA President John McKinney addressing the crowd.

Andy Allen and Sandy Bradshaw with one of the recently restored sashes.

Sandy Bradshaw
December 9, 2014
Photos courtesy of Frank Keegan.

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FILA's 10th anniversary

Ten years ago, FILA was founded after a lot of preparation in the course of about half a year. On October 18, 2004, a first public meeting, organized by Sandy Bradshaw, was held at the firehall in Suttons Bay, while the Website had gone online already the week before.

During the first half year, the name of the little group was South Fox Island Lighthouse Restoration Project (SFILRP). Since that was quite a mouthful, it was changed to Fox Island Lighthouse Association (FILA) in April 2005.

Even before the foundation of the group, it was quite clear that we were facing a huge challenge, especially in view of daunting transportation problems, so progress was expected to be very slow. Besides a tight budget, transportation has been one of the main issues ever since, but, looking back, we can proudly say we have achieved a lot.

The 2014 Annual Meeting, to be held at the Traverse Area District Library on December 6, 2014 at 1:00 p.m., will be kind of a public birthday party.

Happy Birthday FILA!

Hans Joerg Rothenberger
October 22, 2014

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Board Meeting of October 13, 2014

The board discussed updates on the shore crib dock application, the Endangered Species Survey, and the window restoration workshop plus a to-do list for the SlickCraft including suggestions for recruiting volunteer captains and Camper Keepers.

FILA's participation in the Schooner Fest in Traverse City and the Fall Harvest Festival at the Leelanau State Park were reported on. Many thanks to all the volunteers! The 2014 Annual Meeting, including FILA's 10th anniversary, was scheduled for December 6.

The 2014 list of island projects was reassessed. There are many things that could not get done because, due to technical problems with two of the boats, there were only a few work trips to the island.

A nominating committee for the board elections in December was nominated. No, really.

Hans Joerg Rothenberger, based on Pamela Nickerson's minutes
November 10, 2014

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Harvest Festival 2014

Our eighth annual Harvest Festival, September 27, 2014 at the Grand Traverse Lighthouse / Leelanau State Park, was greeted with many participants and fabulous summer-like fall weather.

Pancakes were scrumptious and served up by our Pancake Flipper duo, Frank Keegan and Bob Ashmun with Sandy Bradshaw serving fruit. Al Ammons' home-tapped maple syrup was the hit of the breakfast feast. Pamela Nickerson was constantly busy tending all to perfection.

All in all a great festival, and we look forward to the next!

Sandy Bradshaw
September 30, 2014

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Traverse City Schooner Fest 2014

The South Fox Island Lighthouse Association was present at the Traverse City Schooner Fest, September 20 - 21, 2014.

The association passed out newsletters and brochures to engage the visiting public. We also chatted with the other non-profits who were present.

The last festival of the season is Saturday at the Leeleanau State Park Fall Festival, where FILA will hold the pancake breakfast and bratwurst lunch.

FILA booth in the MHA boat shop
The weather was lousy, so being inside MHA's boat
shop/museum was a treat.  

Donald Stauffer
September 26, 2014

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Window Workshop (September 5 - 7, 2014)

A grant through the Michigan Heritage Preservation Network is making it possible to begin the work of refurbishing the South Fox Lightstation windows. FILA members removed and transported to the mainland 14 sashes, all original construction with old fragile glass, from the 1867 building. Steve Stier, the professional hired to conduct the workshop, led the eleven participants through the many intricate steps using an amazing array of tools and techniques.

Five FILA members (Pamela Nickerson, John and Karen Wells, Jim Hasse and John McKinney) were joined by others from around the state, each of whom had specific reasons for attending (in the business, home repairs, graduate student).

Class working on sashes
FILA members and others at work.

Sashes being worked on
One window at a time.

Tools and materials on workbench
Lots of tools, materials and elbow grease were used.

Group shot of the whole class, FILA members and others
The whole group with some objects of their endeavor.

FILA members will continue the rehabilitation process this winter either at the DNR Grawn facility or in the Wells basement workshop. Hopefully yet this fall we will be able to bring more sashes in and return them next spring. With 7 buildings (six with windows) this project has a long future.

All are welcome to help.

John McKinney
September 14, 2014

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Voyage of Discovery

On August 23, the SlickCraft, also dubbed Fox Craft, had an hour-long trial run.

Results: The missing port tank must be replaced to provide sufficient capacity for safe off-shore use. The outdrive lift function does not work. The boat lacks modern navigation instruments. A few minor deficiencies must be tackled too, such as unfilled old screw holes in the deck and rusting screws on the helm seat pedestal.

However, all in all the boat is a robust and powerful unit with a good balance of cargo and crew capacity that may be quite useful to FILA provided that we have a successful recruitment of crews to operate it in the future.

Phil von Voigtlander
August 25, 2014

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Lighthouse Party at Sandy's

Here are a few photos from the FILA party at the Suttons Bay home of Sandy and Joerg, August 22, 2014:

Potluck under siege
Loading their plates (from left to right): Billy Bradshaw (Sandy's brother-in-law), Terry Pratt (foreground), Phil von Voigtlander (right behind Terry), Don Stauffer, Karen Wells, Sandy Bradshaw.

Terry Pratt, John McKinney, Laddie, Anita Pratt and Sandy Bradshaw.

 Frank Keegan, Mazey the dog, John McKinney, Terry Pratt, John Wells, Phil von Voigtlander and Karen Wells (again, of course, from left to right)

Cathy Allchin, Karen Wells and Phil von Voigtlander.

Hans Joerg Rothenberger
August 29, 2014

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End of Season for the Lightkeeper

On August 22, the Lightkeeper was taken to the Northport Bay Boat Yard, hoisted out and put on her trailer, ready to be winterized.

Joerg aboard the 'Keeper on the hoist
Joerg on deck after entering the traveling hoist.

Hoisting the Lightkeeper
Lightkeeper already out of the water.

Two days later, she was already back in her old shrink wrap cocoon.

Old shrink wrap ready for reusage
Nobody but me would have believed last year's shrink wrap could be re-used.

Two hours later. Comment by Frank Keegan: "Never tell Joerg something can't be done."

An admittedly short, yet successful season for the Lightkeeper. Don't worry, we'll be back next summer!

Hans Joerg Rothenberger
August 28, 2014

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Another load of sashes

On Monday, August 18, 2014, Frank Keegan and I went to the Lighthouse aboard the Lightkeeper under the supervision of Laddie. The rather choppy lake made us anchor off the SE corner of David Johnson's property, but the new electric dinghy motor enabled us to get our equipment straight to the boat house.

 Frank Keegan at the helm
Frank Keegan, a seasoned sailor, steering the
Lightkeeper out of Grand Traverse Bay.

Laddie in the dinghy
Laddie in the dinghy over the treacherous shoals far off the beach. He absolutely loves riding the dinghy.

After some troubles while entering the lighthouse (I had 8 square bits in my tool kit, none of which would fit in those screws on the grating), we removed five more sashes from the first floor of the 1867 Lighthouse, to be used for the window restoration classes by the Michigan Historic Preservation Network & SHPO.

 Rough approach to the lightkeeper
 On Tuesday, the lake didn't look very favorable for
loading fragile sashes.

On Tuesday around noon, everything was ready for the return to Northport, apart from a rough lake. However, nuts underneath the loading platform chafed through the line of the dinghy, which quickly drifted off in the lively SSW wind. In a somewhat adventurous operation, I single-handedly retrieved the dinghy in waves of up to five feet briefly before it barely passed North Fox on her way to Beaver Island or even beyond.

In the meantime, Frank and Laddie were waiting in the boat house, ignorant of my quandary. After some time, they walked around the gull hook, only to realize there was no Lightkeeper at anchor. However, the boat was already coming back, with the dinghy in tow.

After that fuel-guzzling escapade of almost an hour at relatively high speed, we had to walk up to the Mirada Ranch to get some gasoline for a safe return to Northport, especially in view of the fact that I meanwhile had found out that the bottom 1/4 of tank height actually holds only about 8 % of the total capacity, meaning that in that range the fuel gauge plummets like a stone.

At the Ranch, we got very quick help, organized by Mrs. Pamela Johnson. Two young men of her staff, Brandon and J.D., hauled a generous amount of gasoline to the Lightkeeper. Due to the waves, the fuel had to be transferred from the jerry cans into the tanks using a little electric pump, after which they took the cans back to the Ranch. Many, many thanks to all of you!

Meanwhile, it was too late for the ride home, so we spent another night and dinghied our equipment and the sashes to the Lightkeeper on Wednesday. The lake was much calmer, and the passage to Northport was uneventful. At the gas dock we learned that, thanks to a nice tailwind, we still had a healthy reserve in our tanks.

Frank at the fire pit
Chef Frank cooking yet another meal at the fire pit. 

Toilet paper shredded by mice
This is what a team of Boat House mice can make out of a toilet paper roll in one night's time.

Morning at the crib
The little runaway in the morning sun at the crib.

Approaching the Lightkeeper by dinghy
Frank and Laddie on the way to the anchorage.

Sashes in dighy
Five sashes ready for the trip to the mainland.

Ready to drop the anchor
Frank weighing anchor (the Biggie!).  

Hans Joerg Rothenberger
August 28, 2014

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Board Meeting of August 11, 2014

Besides fire extinguishers now stored in the 1867 Lighthouse, missing boards on the crib dock, plans for a color brochure, and a brief report on several hacking attacks on the Website, the window restoration workshop was discussed. Steve Stier, who will conduct the workshop, attended the meeting and briefed the board.

Don Stauffer reported on several past and oncoming events with FILA's participation. The 2014 island projects were reviewed in regard to the difficulties the group is facing due to technical problems with several boats.

John Wells suggested that FILA donate surplus equipment to other non-profit organizations, details to be discussed at the next meeting.

Hans Joerg Rothenberger, based on Pamela Nickerson's minutes
September 8, 2014

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Port Oneida Fair

FILA, for the fourth year in a row, participated in the annual Port Oneida Fair held this past August 8th and 9th.   FILA's tent was, as in prior years, located at the historic Burfiend barn site which was one of six open farmsteads at the fair. Spirits were kept high with quietly meandering live background music, sometimes of banjo, accordion or harmonica playing in the old barn behind the FILA booth.  Many friends were met, some old and some new ones made!

Don “Beadman” Stauffer kept the FILA booth hopping with his beadmaking activities, which both children and adults enjoyed.  Many left with a bead or two (some of them repeat customers!). “Beadman” kindly contributed part of his hard-earned monies earned at the event to support FILA.

 Don Stauffer's mini-trailer
Don's "marshmallow trailer," in which he spent the nights on the fair ground.

Tent & visitors
The FILA tent got pretty good attention. Don's glass bead making attract the kids, and then the parents are told that there is a light station that needs help...

 The booth team
Behind the scenes:, from left to right: Beadman Don, brother Gary, Sandy Bradshaw with Laddie, Cathy Allchin and John McKinney.

 Olsen House
The Olsen House, one of the other venues nearby.

The event was sponsored by the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, Preserve Sleeping Bear and Friends of Sleeping Bear. Thanks all for your support from the board.

Sandy Bradshaw
August 12, 2014

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Second Work Trip

The "Swiss Jockey," as Phil von Voigtlander once jestingly put it, made the race, actually without even trying. While all three boats were having certain technical problems, I somehow managed to synchronize the modifications on the Lightkeeper with the nice weather window of early August.

In the morning of August 4, Karen and John Wells, Gary Stauffer, Dick Zaebst and I left Omena Harbor for the first work trip to South Fox Island since the one-day trip two months before. There was a little incident while leaving Grand Traverse Bay: the dinghy got swamped, completely drowning the electric dinghy motor, and, after retrieving the dinghy, the starboard engine wouldn't start. But all in all we had a peaceful crossing.

Dick and Gary on the flybridge
Gary and Dick sitting on the recently re-installed flybridge seats, which had been removed eight years ago to make room for transporting the dinghy.

Dinghy with trolley
Gary rowing the dinghy with an upside-down trolley from the anchorage to the beach. The dinghy motor was on the blink due to drowning.

Gary's tent
Gary erected his tent after almost ruining his back on the badly bent lawn mower handle.

Make-shift repair of lawnmower handle
This simple make-shift repair on the lawn mower should have been done before Gary did all the hard work.

Dinner at the picnic table
From left to right: John, Gary at the stove, Dick, and Karen.

West beach high water
The west beach after sunset. The lake level was so high, certain parts of the west beach were just gone.

The second day saw most of the crew removing windows, wrapping them in square miles of bubble wrap and boarding the openings up, while the skipper was aboard, repairing the starter motor and draining the dinghy motor back to life.

 Preparing plywood for the windows
The usual combo: one guy working, two watching and commenting: John, Dick and Gary.

Karen cooking dinner, with supervisors
Karen cooking for a hungry crew: Dick, John and Gary.

The last morning was filled with moving all the removed windows aboard. The revived dinghy motor did a great job.

Lightkeeper after sunrise
Lightkeeper at anchor, briefly after sunrise.

Joerg bringing sashes to the Lightkeeper
Joerg bringing bubble-wrapped sashes to the
Lightkeeper. (Photo by John Wells)

South Fox Island from south
Leaving the Light Station behind.

Funny enough, on the way back home, it was the port engine that wouldn't start. However, we safely got back to Omena Harbor, where berthing the boat with only one engine was managed by a well-coordinated crew.

Hans Joerg Rothenberger
August 12, 2014

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Suttons Bay Classic Boat Show

FILA made a good showing at the Classic Boat Show held Saturday, July 21, 2014 at the Inland Seas Education Association in Suttons Bay.  There were plenty of boats and plenty of people, and the weather, though a bit of early rain, faired us all well.  We spent the day happily “FriendRaising” as one of our members coined the activity.

Preparing the tent
Preparing the booth in the morning.

Madeline & Inland Seas at the dock
Madeline (left) and Inland Seas side by side at the dock.

The FILA crew
From left to right, front row: John Wells, Don Stauffer, back row H. Joerg Rothenberger, Sandy Bradshaw, John McKinney, Frank Keagan, Pamela & Jan Nickerson.

Don preparing the tent
Don Stauffer packing the booth tent.

This year's Classic Boat Show was dedicated to the memory of avid Suttons Bay sailor, Mark Pleune.  He was involved in putting on the show for most of its (prior) 25 year run. 

Sandy Bradshaw
August 12, 2014

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Board Meeting of July 14, 2014

The shore crib application status including obtaining the rocks from a specific area of the harbor according to the DNR as well as repair of ice damage were discussed. Three big fire extinguishers for the station will be provided by the DNR.

The SlickCraft is ready for another test run, the Islander is still in repair and the Lightkeeper is undergoing numerous modifications but can be used. Sandy Bradshaw arranged a towing insurance with BoatUS for all crafts, which had bee approved by the board by email.

John Wells and Cathy Allchin reported on  the latest details concerning the grant from the Michigan Historic Preservation Network for a window restoration workshop. Pending projects at the station were discussed, much delayed due to boat and weather problems. .

Keith Kintigh of the DNR gave an extensive report on input wanted by the DNR Wildlife Island Planning Group concerning wildlife management. Sandy is in touch with Robert Kegerreis, who would like to include the South Fox Light Station in his Travelogue documentary about Michigan lighthouses.

Hans Joerg Rothenberger, based on Pamela Nickerson's minutes
August 15, 2014

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Lightkeeper afloat

Ten days after my return from Europe, Sandy and I launched the Lightkeeper in Ahgosatown on July 9, 2014 with the kind help of Joan Kalchik and Mike TenBrock. She had already undergone some modifications on the trailer, with more yet to come.

After a brief refueling dash into Northport Marina, we took her to her new place in Omena, using this little trip for some engine tests.

Lightkeeper launch

The Lightkeeper being launched by Mike Ten Brock.

Lighkeeper's wake in planing mode
Running south from Northport to Omena Harbor .

Sandy steering the Lightkeeper
Sandy at the helm.  

The Lightkeeper in Omena Harbor

The Lightkeeper in her new slip in Omena Harbor.

The following weeks the Lightkeeper basically was ready for action most of the time despite some work in progress, but the weather didn't quite play along.

Additional navigation equipment
Additional navigation equipment.

New bowsprit and anchor
New bowsprit, anchor roller and Mantus storm anchor.

Hans Joerg Rothenberger
August 2, 2014

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Board Meeting of June 9, 2014

Ham Hobson of the DNR reported on the dock application status. Don Stauffer reported on the ice damage on the temporary crib dock. The meeting of May 21st with the DNR was discussed.

The SlickCraft was launched but a blown transmission was discovered. The problem is being tackled. The schedule of public events with FILA participation and the list of 2014 island projects were discussed. According to the first crew at the light station last week there is no significant damage from last winter.

Hans Joerg Rothenberger, based on Pamela Nickerson's minutes
August 1, 2014

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First work trip of the season

On Thursday, June 5 we (John McKinney, John Nelson, Don Stauffer, John Wells and I) traveled to the light station on South Fox aboard the Islander. This was our first trip of the season and as such was the latest start FILA has had; a month ago the southern end of the island was still locked in ice. We had a cloudless and calm day for the uneventful run out there despite the 35 degree water temperature.

We were carrying one of our recently rebuilt lawn mowers, and, as soon as we got it ashore, it was put to use cutting all the lawn areas. Other team members cleared the side walks, cut brush along the paths, maintained the equipment and inspected all the buildings. All appeared as we left them last autumn. There was some evidence of ice damage in the harbor with the landing crib sustaining minor damage (loss of a portion of the deck).

In the afternoon, we continued mowing while others policed the beaches. We were joined by a seaplane of University of Minnesota Plover habitat investigators and spent some time with them discussing their project and our earlier bird surveys. Later we loaded up the last of the worn-out mowers and our gear and departed.

Though the pleasant weather continued, the return trip was eventful: a short distance from the island we suffered a major engine failure (the first problem we have had with the Islander). We deployed our emergency propulsion unit (6 hp outboard) and had a leisurely return voyage. This was the first full test of the outboard to go the whole distance; slow but sure we returned to Northport in the late evening.

Subsequent investigation revealed a likely blown head gasket, and the boat was delivered to Manitou Marine for repairs.

Three Johns

Three Johns: John Nelson, John Wells & John McKinney (from left to right).

Access to skeleton tower
The ground beneath the 1934 Skeleton Tower was cleared for access by ladder.

 Lean-to in miserable shape
A sorry sight: the lean-to behind the 1867 Lighthouse.

Phil von Voigtlander
June 8, 2014
Photos by Don Stauffer

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Michigan Lighthouse Alliance Conference 2014 etc.

The Michigan Lighthouse Alliance Conference May 22nd and 23rd at the Great Lakes Maritime Academy in Traverse City was two days of information and exchange of stories and a shared love of those Light Stations. Believe me; the 'remote' group (those of us on islands around the Great Lakes) shared the most information and best stories as well as input to the seminars. We (FILA) are not alone. In fact, FILA is in way better shape than some groups. I found this out over the cocktail hour(s). Don't worry.I did not embarrass the FILA Family name and made a lot of friends for FILA. Met some passionate folks who care very much about Light Stations.

Ken Czapski, who did our HSR, has found shingles that match the 1910 Assistant Keepers Quarters building roof. The shingles are in an attic in a church he was doing an HSR for. That will take some phone calls / e-mails to determine availability of the shingles and location of the church. God bless Ken. He also bought me a beer!

May 25, on to visit two light houses and one fog signal building; saw two very good representations (complete restorations as far as I could tell) of 1867 Lighthouses. The fog signal building was a disappointment. One 1867 light house was a land based Station. (Read: parking lots to drive up to at Ontonagon, MI). The other at Copper Harbor, MI required a boat ride of ½ mile.

 Boat to Copper Harbor Lighthouse
Boat to Copper Harbor Lighthouse.

Copper Harbor Lighthouse
Copper Harbor Lighthouse, built 1866.

Another view
Same Lighthouse, different view.

Fog signal building at Eagle Harbor, MI
Fog Signal Building at Eagle Harbor, MI.

Oil House at Ontonagon Harbor Lighthouse
Oil House of the Ontonagon Harbor Lighthouse.

Ontonagon Harbor Lighthouse
Ontonagon Harbor Lighthouse.

1600 miles, 6 nights and 7 days to circle Lake Superior.

Just a note: the ice is very much on the waters of Lake Superior harbors. We refilled our cooler with Lake Superior ice.

John Wells
June 2, 2014

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SlickCraft Boat in the water!

After a fun adventure of lost keys, a dead battery for the front winch, and no gas (will fill up this weekend sometime), we finally launched the SlickCraft last night about 9:15pm.
The duct tape that was used to 'seal up' the hatch has to be removed - *note to team: NEVER NEVER NEVER use duct tape on a boat hull unless an emergency. There's about 4 hrs time to get the residue and sticky string off the deck. Will be a good 'hang out on the boat' kind of project.
The cabin needs cleaning, closet door latches need to be tweaked, and the anchor line needs to be installed on the windlass. There might be an issue with the motor lift, didn't seem to go down all the way. Will be looked at this weekend.

SlickCraft boat at Elmwood
The boat almost ready for action.

The boat will stay in Elmwood until Northport opens up.

Catherine Allchin
May 23, 2014

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Board Meeting of May 12, 2014

The financial report was approved and its influence on the 2014 Project List was discussed. So were the dock application status, the endangered species survey, and FILA's participation in the Great Lakes Lighthouse Conference (May 21 - 23) in Traverse City.

Cathy Allchin reported on the plans for the launch of the SlickCraft boat. Northport Harbor isn't open yet. Summer festivals were discussed.

Main items of the Island Projects list: Assistant Keepers Building Roof, Lean To on the 1867 Lighthouse Building, gutters on Assistant Keepers Building, and Boat House Doors and Windows.  

Cathy mentioned that the projected total funds for the Crib Project would be about $230,000.

Hans Joerg Rothenberger, based on Don Stauffer's minutes
May 23, 2014

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Board Meeting of March 10, 2014

Since there was no quorum, the February meeting minutes and financial report were deferred. According to John Wells, the Year End Appeal garnered around $8000.00.

Ham Hobson, our DNR man, reported on the dock application status (currently in review at the DNR) and the Endangered Species Survey. In April, FILA will meet with the DNR concerning this year's work permits etc.. According to Cathy Allchin, the Partnership Agreement with the DNR has been completed and submitted.

The Michigan Lighthouse Assistance Program did not grant FILA?s application for money to fund a window restoration workshop, but there may be another opportunity in cooperation with the Michigan State Housing Development Authority.

John Wells reported on the very well received DNR workshop presentation by Karen, his wife, and him. The priorities of the items on the island project list for 2014 were presented and discussed. A book writer contacted FILA concerning a research trip to the Light Station, which is the central topic of a book in the making.

Ham Hobson notified the board of an inquiry by the Northwest Michigan Council of Governments regarding a proposed water trail project for canoes and kayak with a possible stop at the station. Ham suggested that Paul check out the FILA website for further information.

Hans Joerg Rothenberger, based on Pamela Nickerson's minutes
March 14, 2014

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DNR Friends Summit at Grayling

The DNR-sponsored "Friends Summit" was held at the DNR's South Higgins Lake facility in late February. The event was designed to promote understanding, communication, and a sharing of ideas between the DNR and its non-profit friends groups. These groups present a hefty lot who volunteer at the over one-hundred state parks and recreation areas throughout Michigan.

FILA's John and Karen Wells made a thirty-five minute presentation which was well received with many questions asked by the audience afterwards. The Wells highlighted tips on how the annual Leelanau State Park Harvest Festival  has become a success. This coming fall, FILA, in conjunction with the Leelanau State Park at Northport, will hold the Eighth Annual Harvest Fest (date to be yet announced).

Sandy Bradshaw, based on John Wells's notes
March 2, 2014

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Board Meeting of February 10, 2014

The Board Meeting at the GT Children's Museum saw a big attendance including two participants on a transatlantic phone line. Ham Hobson (DNR) reported that the dock application is now being reviewed by the Army Corps of Engineers. Ways to prevent problems for endangered species were discussed.

The proposed 2014 budget, as distributed at the January meeting, was accepted. Participation in regional events was outlined. The list of island projects got updated.

The Michigan Lighthouse Alliance will be holding a conference at the Haggerty Center in Traverse City on May 21st ? 23rd. FILA board members are welcome to attend at their own cost.

Hans Joerg Rothenberger, based on Pamela Nickerson's minutes
February 12, 2014

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Board Meeting of January 13, 2014

The FILA Board, meeting at the GT Children's Museum, approved the minutes of the Annual Meeting and the financial report incl. a summary of the 2013 budget. Cathy Allchin reported on the state of the dock plans. John Wells briefed the board on the End of the Year Appeal and other fund raising projects. Ham Hobson of the DNR informed the board that the DNR will place fire extinguishers at the station and that storage is now available to FILA at the Grawn Field Office. John McKinney submitted a grant application to fund a class on wooden window restoration to train 6 - 8 people.

John Wells reported that the logbook of Allan Caine, last lightkeeper at the South Fox Light Station, has been located. Phil von Voigtlander and Cathy presented the island projects for 2014. John Wells will be giving a workshop on how to put on a fund-raising food event at the DNR Friends Summit being held at the Ram Center in Higgins Lake.  The workshop is scheduled for March 1st, 2014.

Hans Joerg Rothenberger, based on Pamela Nickerson's minutes
February 12, 2014

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For other years, please click here to go back to the News page.



Archived February 11, 2016