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Five Years of Island Life

Heron Cay. Kismet. Cherry. And Honey Bee. What do these Thousand Islands have in common? They will be featured in the pages of the next issue of Island Life Magazine.

Island Life Magazine celebrates its fifth anniversary edition in 2014 with more stories and photographs about this amazing archipelago on both sides of the border. The cover features a spectacular aerial shot of Heron Cay Island near Ivy Lea by award-winning Thousand Islands photographer and author Ian Coristine, of Raleigh Island. Raleigh Island is the subject of his recent eBook, One in a Thousand, available as an iPad app.

I founded Island Life in 2009 and printed the first edition in 2010, distributing it in eastern Ontario and northern New York as an insert through the EMC and Thousand Islands Sun in May. Each year, 25,000 copies of the glossy annual magazine are printed with a total of 125,000 copies of Island Life to be printed by next spring.

I get to publish a magazine that not only reflects the beauty of this world-famous tourism region but also tells the stories of the Thousand Islands. And as Susie Smith, editor of the monthly online magazine TI Life agrees, there is never a shortage of material here. Perhaps that's because there are actually about 1,865 islands in the Thousand Islands to keep us busy.

I'm delighted Susie, the author of The First Summer People: The Thousand The Thousand Islands 1650-1910, will write an article about her island, Sagastaweka, in the Admiralty Group near Gananoque for Island Life 2014.

Susie is a tireless advocate for the Thousand Islands. She has edited TI Life for five years now since its Syracuse founder, architect and Thousand Islands author Paul Malo passed away. She writes articles and edits her monthly issues in her book-lined office on Sagastaweka Island when she isn't at home in Ottawa. A big thank you to Ian, whose incredible photography has graced Island Life since 2010 and has been featured as a cover shot on the last four issues. I was first introduced to Ian as a writer when I wrote a newspaper story about his love affair with Raleigh Island in 2008. I have been writing stories about the Thousand Islands ever since and launched Island Life in 2010.

The 2014 edition will also spotlight the Thousand Islands photography of Joseph T. Meirose IV, of Full Frame Works' Photography (Facebook and Website) in Sackets Harbor in a photo essay of his wondrous waterscapes of the region. Readers of will be familiar with this talented photographer's work.

I'll write about my adventures on Alnwick Island this past summer, between Rockport and Ivy Lea. The magazine will feature the beautiful Brock Isles and of course, Boldt Castle's Heart Island and Singer Castle's Dark Island. Michael Laprade of California shares the story of his wife Janice's beloved 'Bee,' or Honey Bee Island in the International Rift while we visit the charming century-old cottage on Surveyor's Island and the grand estate of Casa Blanca on Cherry Island on Millionaire's Row near Alexandria Bay.


There's only one season at Island Life Magazine: Summer. Sure it's November and Christmas is around the corner. I might have spotted some snowflakes out my office window as I type this but I'm looking away. By May, boats will be back in their slips and deck chairs will be pulled out on their docks just waiting for another season of Island Life to enjoy. One island at a time.

By Kim Lunman

Kim Lunman is the owner/publisher of Island Life Magazine Her company, Thousand Islands Ink, is based in Brockville. Lunman is an award-winning writer whose work has appeared in the Boat U.S. Magazine, Lakeland Boating, Reader's Digest, Globe and Mail, and The National Post

To see all of Kim Lunman’s TI Life articles click here, and to read a more complete biography see our About page.

Editor’s Note:  Congratulations Kim – your wonderful magazine is always displayed on my coffee table as it is on so many others.  We appreciate your magazine and your passion for the River and its islands. Can’t wait for May 2014.

Please feel free to leave comments about this article using the form below. Comments are moderated and we do not accept comments that contain links. As per our privacy policy, your email address will not be shared and is inaccessible even to us. For general comments, please email the editor.


Brian Johnson
Comment by: Brian Johnson ( )
Left at: 9:15 PM Thursday, November 14, 2013
A treasure of island stories and memories. Mysteries unveiled, too! Every issue of Kim's 'Island Life' is a keepsake!
Read one and you are 'hooked'
Dan Colby
Comment by: Dan Colby ( )
Left at: 6:45 AM Friday, November 15, 2013
The pictures and recollections are just so wonderful. This is a beautiful publication.
Comment by: Hans ( )
Left at: 9:00 AM Tuesday, December 3, 2013
Keep it up - Excellent articles!