Certain memories stick out in our mind, despite how many years have passed. Here, we share some of our favourite cottage memories that we hold dear to our hearts.
“I spent summers as a child at a family cottage compound in Muskoka. My favourite memories of the cottage were spending time with my extended family — including aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents — and canoeing, water skiing and swimming.
I remember sitting drowsily at the dinner table once, as the sun was getting low, with warm sun-kissed skin and thinking, Let’s go swimming again after supper! I remember the sound of my dad going out in the little boat at dusk to go fishing as I was drifting off to sleep.
One time, my brothers and I were fishing off the dock in the evening and my brother’s cast landed its lure right into my top lip — that hurt.
I remember the sound of bullfrogs and loons from my bunk bed. I remember the dark nights and chilly mornings before the sun heated things up and there was mist on the lake. When evenings were a bit chilly in the bunkie, my grandma would light what she called “a little stick fire” in the tiny wood stove beside the bunk beds — which wouldn’t likely meet code now! It smelled so wonderful and crackled so cheerfully. My grandma and I would walk the beaches and find driftwood pieces to sand and varnish and make pictures out of.
My best childhood memories were at the cottage and I feel so blessed to have had them. My heritage cottage has since been sold, so my memories are even more poignant.” — Cathy Burke, vice president and CFO of Gilbert + Burke
"Recent memories of the cottage include building family traditions for my grandchildren at our own cabin. Our traditions include building wood fires inside and out, canoeing, swimming and exploring in the woods and rocky shorelines to find “secret spots.” Finding frogs, driftwood pieces, and special rocks and teaching my grandchildren how to fish. Our cottage is a place for cousins to connect with each other, and extended family to get to know one another better.” — Randy Burke, president and CEO of Gilbert + Burke
"I have many memories of being in Muskoka, but I guess the ones that stand out are always from my birthday on August 6. You see, when you have a summer birthday as a kid, you don’t typically have all your friends from grade school around to celebrate it. I guess this is because it’s in the middle of the summer and people are scattered everywhere.
To have a birthday in the summer is fine, but to celebrate it in Muskoka every year, well, that is out of this world. Whether it's getting Star Wars figures in 1977, or concert tickets to my favourite band playing at Kee to Bala in 1992, or a brand new Green Egg Grill in 2016, my birthday memories at the cottage are some of the best. I would not trade them for anything.
August is just around the corner, and while I do not know what I will be doing, I know exactly where I will be!" — Donald Price, national account manager at Ferrero Foodservice