Written by Thornley Stoker
posted on August 13, 2012 07:35
Attended by almost 300 people, this year’s Thousand Islands Association annual meeting and traditional shore breakfast was held at the 1000 Island’s Playhouse in Gananoque, Saturday, July 21st.
The morning began with TIA’s President, Orm Murphy introducing MPP Steve Scott who brought greetings and congratulations to the TIA for the work it does. Unlike most annual meetings, the association, with a membership of 400+, changed its format from the standard presentation of reports to one of hospitality and camaraderie. Members began lining up for a traditional shore breakfast, complete with pancakes and fried fish. After meeting and greeting their island neighbours from both sides of the River, they assembled in the 1000 Islands Playhouse to hear informative and entertaining speakers.
“This format is so much better than the “old days”, says Susan Smith who was president back in the 1980s. “I remember when the meetings were very long, filled with reports and discussion - but then they changed. We owe thanks in particular to a past President, Barbara Butts and her board, for changing the way the meeting is held. It is now a social highlight of the summer where we have an opportunity to meet old friends - we not only learn a lot about the region, but we can see how our membership fees can make a difference to river navigation.”
This year’s meeting focused on two important aspects of island life. First the audience learned about the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812. Historian and former publisher of the Gananoque Reporter, Paul Scott, played the role of Lieutenant Levi Soper, an officer in Colonel Joel Stone’s militia in 1812. Ltnt. Soper gave us a day-by-day account of the Raid on Gananoque with pictures of what the river looked liked like at that time. This war helped shape the two nations we live in today.
From the past to the future - as the second part of the meeting provided the opportunity to launch a new website. Year’s ago, the TIA reached its membership only through a paper newsletter. Although appreciated for the important information it contained, there was a move to join the digital age by creating a static, informational website. Then this summer a new interactive website provides a strong step forward in finding an effective way to reach our disparate river community all year long.
Now the new website will allow new and renewing Members to:
- Pay their dues online
- Link to all Business members websites
- Find helpful information and links about water levels, GPS island locations, etc.
- Find links to events in the area
- and review a great photo library ...
We hope to expand the site to include the sale of TIA branded items and a river blog.
Don’t spend your summer on the rocks
Since 1934 the Thousand Islands Association has helped boaters in the 1000 islands region use the water safely by ensuring a series of over 300 shoals in the region are clearly marked. During the summer months the region’s population expands as people from around the globe flock to this river paradise. The association pays for this service through member fees. Nearly 200 shoal markers are placed every spring from mid-way on the Bateau Channel, north of Howe Island, all the way down River to Brockville/Morristown.
Fire Pumps and Defibrillators
Between Kingston and Brockville and Cape Vincent and Ogdensburg there are fire pumps and defibrillator kits provided by the TIA.
The defibrillators are meant for everyone's use. You will find them at:
At the conclusion of the meeting president Orm Murphy asked every member of TIA to ask a friend and neighbour to join. “TIA is a vital and important organization that seeks to improve everyone’s river experience by providing safe passage through the 1000 islands area.” he said. “Are you a member of TIA? If so, check out the site to renew your membership. If not, then please join.”
By Thornley Stoker
Thornley Stoker is a "river-rat in training" having only spent the last 30 years on the St. Lawrence. A resident of Tremont Island (Admiralty Islands) in the summer and Kingston in the winter Thornley is married to Susan and their children, Harrison and Bram are living out west in British Columbia.