Greetings Sunbeamers!! Here we are, already February, in the heart of our ice fishing season, and counting the days until the beautiful spring weather is upon us. We cannot wait to get back out on the water where we can actually ‘float’ again! As always, we cannot thank you enough for your continued support. We are truly grateful, never take this for granted, and will always strive to do better for you.
The Spring came upon us quickly again this past year due to a prolonged winter, giving us a bit of a late start. That said, we got right at it, getting into some extensive landscaping. Everything from new top soil and grass seed in certain areas, grading the parking and roadway areas with ‘A’ gravel (needed due to the spring run off and effects of winter), replenishing all of our flower beds along with completing our planter boxes and flower pots to beautify the resort, to new fresh mulch in all gardens and pathways.
Because of the late winter, we also received some late snowfall, giving us nice high-water levels to start the season. This is always our preference, (although perhaps not to the extent of 2019 when it was so high the entire old docking system was submerged!), as the lake is controlled by a series of regulated dams which release water throughout the season. The higher we start the better the outlook, should it be a dry season.
Things did in fact get (very) warm and dry as the spring progressed, thus prompting the MNRF to call a fire ban in our area from late May all the way through to July 11th. This meant that those of you who stayed during that time were unfortunately not able to use our snazzy new custom-made Sunbeam Bungalows fire bowls! They really are quite special and look even better when there’s a roaring fire in them! However, the numerous propane fire bowls we offer around the resort were available and were well used in that time frame.
Throughout the season, as well as the distinctive new fire bowls, you would have noticed all brand-new picnic tables, all equipped with bright red umbrellas for shade as well as protection from light rain, and which also added a beautiful finishing touch to the outdoor environment. We also added white lights (‘Christmas lights’) around all of the decks on the back cottages, as well as at cottage #26, and plan to add them to the remaining cottages this spring, making for a nice evening ambiance. (Wherever we can find power we will also light up a few more trees). Ohhhhh, and please be mindful when using your BBQ on the decks now, as a few guests unintentionally melted a few light strands this season.
We are trying to upgrade the back fire pit area to a nice communal gathering spot, as those of you who stayed with us last year may have noticed. In addition to the large fire pit itself, as well as the pre-existing gazebo, (equipped with patio furniture, lighting, and propane fire bowl), we also provided a BBQ, making for another reason to enjoy this area. We then added an additional gazebo beside that, making for even more sheltered gathering space. It is equipped with a nice new patio furniture sitting area, as well as tiki lights for the evenings. Both gazebos are off the ground on wooden decks with railings for your comfort and safety.
We (finally) completed the install of all of our new screen doors by mid-summer. This was actually quite an undertaking, completed much later than anticipated. However, all work is done now, and the good quality doors give a great finished look, all equipped with an attractive decorative paddle push bar on the inside.
We completed our second year with the new Walleye regulations, (40 – 45cm’s/15.75” – 17.72”) as well as the second year of Bass opening a full month earlier. The results of both regulation changes have proven to be a success, with some great catches (and fish frys to follow) and opportunities to see both species in good health and plentiful.
To help you catch more of these fish, we added new Hummingbird PiranhaMAX 4 fish finders to all of the camp boats over the course of the season last year. They have larger, clear, colourful screens which just might give you an extra edge out there! We also added one more trolling motor due to the consistent demand, not to mention the desirable additional perks that go along with them, such as having a better fishing experience, first cleaning of the day, and new upgraded wide-body mesh seats.
We have once again scheduled our annual aquatic treatment for the marina for this coming August. This procedure will ensure the marina area stays clean and weed-free. Despite the cost it is well worth the results, and is environmentally friendly.
On our beachfront, we added chairs, chairs and more chairs it seems, (favouring the composite style on the dock to be able to handle windy days), along with colourful beach umbrellas, and an additional canoe, making three in total. Our volleyball court on the opposite side of the boathouse seemed to be used more than ever this summer. We also offer that side of the beach as our dog beach. There are chairs and umbrellas set up there as well for your comfort when you spend some time there with your pooch.
We have changed our summer season check-in time to 4pm, (previously 3pm), however it will remain 3pm for the spring and fall seasons. You are always more than welcome to arrive early, however some cottages may not be ready until that time. In the summer weeks, turning over all cottages in one day requires extra time to do a thorough job, and meet our standards. In the spring and fall we have staggered check-in/check-out days, allowing us that little bit of flexibility to offer an earlier check-in.
We try to do what we can over the winter months, above and beyond managing the ice fishing season and cottage occupancy, and with weather being a huge factor. We replaced the kitchen floor in cottage #23 while we had a few days opportunity, and currently have the entire washroom in #25 ripped apart, (flooring and all, right down to the ground), as we upgraded all of the plumbing in that cottage and this was the only way to access it. It was well worth the effort as #25 will have a nice new washroom floor when complete. We are also doing some sanding and staining of the cottage interior doors, trim, coffee tables, benches, and even the pine walls in the back cottages. This gives a clean fresh look that perhaps would not be noticeable, but if not done would mean things would look dull and faded over time. Another nice touch is that we’ve added a little basket of books to every cottage, with a variety of reading material for your reading pleasure. Exchange a book, or just read and replace one during your stay.
We have also replaced the furnaces in both cottages #5 & #6, which had both had a solid 29-year run. These new furnaces are far more efficient, environmentally friendly, and have a pleasant new look. The office got a mini make-over as well. It started with just a new pine ceiling, however turned into redoing the walls in pine, installing new lights and new shelving. We have a few other jobs we would like to complete, however time will tell how much can be done as we work through the remaining winter months. We will follow up in one of our News updates on our website once planned work is completed.
If you are thinking of booking for this coming season, please do not hesitate to call or e-mail us anytime. It would be our pleasure to help arrange another memorable holiday here at Sunbeam.
In closing, we want to thank you once again for your past and current support. Thank you as well for your positive comments, whether it be on TripAdvisor, a Google review, or by word-of-mouth to your family and friends. If you have any family or friends who might be interested in reading this news update, please let them know they can find it here on the news page at www.sunbeambungalows.com
Here's to many more memorable holidays, and some great fishing stories!
Darren & Sarah