Tuesday, June 24

July Happenings

Just some of the organized events happening in July around Huntsville, Muskoka, Algonquin Park, Kearney, Burk's Falls and the area. Check back often for updates.

Canada Day Celebrations

Visit one of our local towns to celebrate Canada Day fun and friendly small-town style. Enjoy fireworks displays in Huntsville, Burk's Falls, Magnetawan and Kearney. Many towns are holding afternoon events with games and activities.
In Huntsville, join Tony Clement, MP Parry Sound Muskoka and Norm Miller MPP for Parry Sound Muskoka to sing O Canada and enjoy a piece Canada Day Cake, plus a one-hour concert by the Muskoka Concert Band (11am at the Town Dock).
July 1

Patriotic Red and White Strawberry Social & Steam-up Day
The Muskoka Museum and Pioneer Village will be hosting a Strawberry Social & Steam-Up Day. Free admission to the Muskoka Museum; admission to the Village is $10 and includes Friends of Muskoka Pioneer Village Strawberry Shortcake, free Canada flags and entertainment. The steam train will run at 12 noon, 1, 2, and 3 pm (cost will be $5). Located in Huntsville.
July 1 from 10am - 4pm

HBC Run For Canada - Algonquin Park
10K Run, 3K Walk and 1K Kids Run to support Canadian athletes. Runs take place in 15 communities across Canada, but can there be a more beautiful place to participate than in Algonquin Park? Mew Lake Campground serves as the staging area for the Start/Finish line, as well as the food tents, entertainment and more.
Participants will receive a free pass into Algonquin Park with their registration.
July 1st

Fire Department Fundraiser
The Perry Township Fire Department is holding a big 2-day yard sale to raise funds for equipment and community support. Join Jim and the rest of the volunteer fire fighters at the Emsdale fairgrounds and take home some great treasures.
July 5 & 6

The Art of Summer Show & Sale
The Huntsville Art Crowd is having their summer show and sale featuring local artists and artisans.
There will be paintings, photography, metalwork, jewellery, and artist demonstrations. Located outside Robinson's Independent Grocers at Hwy 60 & Hwy 11, Huntsville.
July 5 & 6 from 10am - 4pm

The Edge of the Woods Theatre Festival
Eclectic festival featuring clowns, stilts, puppets and different forms of street performance, plus short alternative theatrical performances created by both professional artists and community members.
Participate in various activities such as stilt workshops and face painting. This festival is a pay-what-you-can event accessible to all. Located at downtown Huntsville’s beautiful riverfront.
July 12 & 13

Olde Fashioned Box Social
The North Muskoka Pioneer Parish Olde Fashioned Box Social featuring gospel music, games, talent show, Box Lunch auction, and fiddle and pie contests. Admission is $2.00. Located at the Huntsville
July 12 at 11am

Tunes @ Tall Trees
Bring your lawn chair and enjoy the beauty of Spencer's Tall Trees gardens while listening to local musician Tobin Spring. Enjoy a selection of juices, cheeses, fruit and pastries from the Tall Trees kitchen, and find out why it's the perfect way to enjoy a summer afternoon. Tickets are $15 per person. For more information or to order tickets call 705-789-4975. Located at Spenser's Tall Trees in Huntsville.
July 13 at 2pm

Sprucedale Horticultural Society Garden Tour
Annual Open Garden Tour showcasing 9 different gardens around the Sprucedale/Emsdale region. Every garden has something special and different to show. Maps will be available at the inn.
July 13th from 9am to 4pm

Poetry Workshop & Café
An afternoon workshop with celebrated poet/author Martin Avery. Followed by an evening of sharing the day's creations plus an open mic opportunity for area poets and guests. All are welcome, but workshop space is limited. To register for the workshop email junesalm@sympatico.ca. Located in Huntsville.
Workshop at
Suzuki Strings Studio from 2 - 4pm
Open mic at
The Hideaway Pub from 7 - 9pm
July 15

Concerts in the Park
Toonie for some Tunes at the Huntsville Town Dock Park. Bring your lawn chairs to enjoy a variety of musical performances outdoors. We ask those in the audience to contribute a "toonie" for the tunes. All monies go to the performer.
July 16 thru 20 starting at 7pm

Creative Changes Art Show & Sale
Showcasing talented local artists. Friday evening Wine and Cheese Reception is $5. Free admission the rest of the weekend. Everyone welcome. Located
at the Community Centre in Kearney.
July 18 thru 20

Les Stroud at the Algonquin Theatre
Best known as TV's 'Survivorman', Les Stroud is also a talented musician and local resident. Les presents a multi media evening featuring his film-work and music as well as highlights from his highly acclaimed documentary series.
During this 'one of a kind' evening, Stroud is backed by a seven piece band of top notch musicians, and joined by special guest singer songwriter Peirson Ross.
At Huntsville's Algonquin Theatre. Tickets $35.00.
July 19 at 8pm

Huntsville Horticultural Society Garden Tour
Visit some lovely gardens of the area on this
self-guided tour. Maps are available at Sandhill Nursery and Treasure's and Trophies in Huntsville for $5 and include a $10 voucher for Sandhill Nursery.
July 19 from 9am - 4pm

Annual Antique Show
Dealers from all across Ontario return to Huntsville Place Mall
for the annual antique show and sale.
July 23 thru 27

Muskoka Heritage Place 50th Anniversary Celebration
The Muskoka Museum opened in Huntsville on Saturday, July 26, 1958. Join Huntsville mayor and invited dignities as we celebrate Muskoka Heritage Place's 50th Anniversary.
There will be a Golden Jubilee High Tea (while supplies last) plus displays on the birds and bees, the flowers and trees, Northern Owls, Kids for Turtles, and a Butterfly Release. Muskoka Roastery Coffee and Savour Muskoka partner for a picnic in perfect taste, on the Village Green. The gate opens at 10am and the party begins at 11am. Admission is free courtesy of Huntsville Rotary Club.
At Muskoka Heritage Place, 88 Brunel Rd., Huntsville.

July 26 beginning at 10am

Daylily Festival
Third annual Daylily Festival at Fern Glen Garden Centre just down the road from the inn. Row upon row of lilies for you to admire, and even to take home. Live entertainment by the Northern Lights Steel Band Orchestra; charity bbq fundraiser; local artists' work on display.
July 26 & 27

Arts Walk
Come for an enjoyable stroll along Hunters Bay in Huntsville and enjoy an eclectic mix of artistic experiences in natural and man-made settings. For more information call 1-800-663-ARTS (2787) or 705-788-2787.
July 27 from 12 - 3pm

Huntsville Jazz Festival
The Huntsville Jazz Festival is back again this year, bigger and better than ever. Five great evening concerts in Huntsville’s intimate Algonquin Theatre and jazz offerings throughout the community, during the day.
July 30 - Aug 3

Weekly Events:

Tuesday Night Bike Ride
Bring your wheels and meet in the parking lot behind the Algonquin Outfitters store att 86 Main St. E, Huntsville. Be prepared for a night of trail riding around Huntsville. New to the area? What better way to find places to ride and people who enjoy riding! For more information call Andy or Bob in the Bike Shop, at 705-789-0262

Kayak Wednesdays
$15 per person. Algonquin Outfitters on Main St. will provide all the gear for an evening outing on the Muskoka River. Meet at the store before 6pm to register; guided paddle starts before 7pm and goes for about two hours, possibly all the way to Lake Vernon and back. For more information call Randy at 705-789-0262 ext. 36.

Huntsville Farmers Market
Thursdays, 9am - 2pm, Canadian Tire parking lot
Fridays, 9am - 2pm, beside Robinson's Independent

Muskoka Cruise-in Nights
Wednesday evenings
Saturday evenings

Antique cars, classics, hot rods and special interest automobiles on display. Door prizes and draws with proceeds going to local charities.
At the Canadian Tire parking lot in Huntsville.

Huntsville Festival of the Arts
The festival is a year-round celebration of the performing arts. The July line-up of performers boasts some big names and offers something for everyone. Jim Cuddy, Hawksley Workman, Jully Black, Sophie Milman, Downchild Blues Band, Michelle Wright, John McDermott, Barra MacNeils, Hannafor Street Silver Band are some of the performers to grace the stage of the Algonquin Theatre. Check out the July Festival of the Arts calender for details.

Monday, June 23

Reinforcements have Arrived

The Brighter Side of Bugs

There's no denying that June is bug season, but there's good news to report: The dragonflies have arrived to fight the good fight! Whole squadrons of these skilled little pilots are on patrol and picking off the enemy, er, I mean the mosquitoes, one by one.

I took my usual bike ride up past the lake and I had a whole convoy of dragonflies keeping pace with me. They like warm, dry sunny afternoons for hunting, and can be seen
whizzing about over the lawns and meadows around the inn. Not only are they completely harmless to people, and great at controlling the insect population, they are beautiful little works of art with their shimmering wings the colour of soap bubbles.

I used to be a little afraid of dragonflies with their strange, helicopter shape and larger-than-life name. But then I realized that they're on our side. They
eat the bad guys—the mosquitoes, black flies and deer flies—that would otherwise try to eat us. In fact, the black flies are now done for the year and the worst of the bug season is behind us.

Dragonflies are not alone on my 'good bug' list.
Late June also brings us fire flies! Even as we enter our fourth summer here, I still get excited to see the fire flies. Their season is short-lived, just a few weeks of nocturnal lightbums going off over the back lawn like mini paparazzi flashes. Enjoy the show while soaking in the hot tub, or from the new deck in front of the Coop, late in the evening when the backdrop is good and dark.

Perhaps everyone's favourite insect, the bug with the best PR, is the
delicate and colourful butterfly. Right now, we often see Canadian Tiger Swallowtails (pictured), and soon the ever-popular Monarchs will be fluttering by in all their majesty. If bugs aren't your thing, then sit back and watch the antics of the hummingbirds. They're tiny but feisty, particularly the males, who defend the feeder with much gusto and bravado. Our most patient of guests have managed to photograph these little marvels mid-flight. Take a look at our photo-gallery, or bring your camera on your next visit and see what you can capture on 'film'.

Nature will bear the closest inspection. She invites us to lay our eye level with her smallest leaf, and take an insect view of its plain.
- Henry David Thoreau

Friday, June 13

Cycling or Strolling the Seguin

The hot spell of earlier this week has lifted, leaving us with great cycling weather. I took a spin along the Seguin Trail, up past the little lake and back again.

As a former railway bed, the Seguin Trail is level and broad; wide enough, in fact, to drive a train through. It starts just down the road from the inn, follows past the length of our property line, then winds its way 60 km west, ending just south of Parry Sound. The trail passes through lovely terrain of mixed forest, spruce bogs and small lakes and creeks. There are places where the trail touches civilization—occasionally passing by small towns or veering along Hwy 518—but for the most part it feels like a thread through the wilderness.

It's hard to imagine that over 100 years ago this was an important transportation route, bringing the harvested lumber of the region out to Georgian Bay where it would be shipped down to city ports such as Toronto and Detroit. It was also a lifeline to the towns that thrived along it's length. Many are now ghost towns, as the track and train gave way in the early-middle 1900's to highways and trucks.

I love to cycle our little portion of the Seguin, but I don't generally recommend it for a leisurely pedal. Since the old rail bed is quite level, there are no hills to labour up, but also no hills to coast down and catch your breath. Plus, much of the trail is sand and gravel. There are stretches where the sand is quite deep and loose, and in these spots you have to work for every slow inch you gain. But there are other stretches that are hard-packed dirt, where you can really let loose and enjoy a good go.

If cycling through sand is not your thing, don't worry. Most visitors enjoy the Seguin on foot. The flat, wide path is perfect for walking side by side with your travel mate, and it is easily accessed just steps from the inn. The little lake I like to visit is just a 20-25 minute walk one way; the beaver pond is a few minutes from your door.

For those looking to go a little further, we even offer pickup service from the town of Sprucedale. You can hike the 13 km to town in perhaps 3 to 4 hours. Get a bite to eat and a cold drink from the general store or tavern, and Jim or I will come fetch you back to the inn. Details are available on our website packages page.

The Seguin is part of the Trans-Canada Trail and the Park-to-Park Trail, which will eventually run from Killbear Provincial Park all the way to Algonquin Provincial Park. As a shared-use trail, it's open to snowmobiles and ATV's as well as bicycles, horses, and cross country skiers (permits required for some uses). As with any outdoor adventure, if you're planning to be out on the trail for more than an hour, tote along essential supplies (such as water and snacks) and the right garments for the weather; and tell someone where you're going.

The Seguin Trail is a wonderful ribbon of history and a great way to experience the landscape of the Almaguin Highlands. Hope to see you on it!

I remember a hundred lovely lakes, and recall the fragrant breath of pine and fir and cedar and poplar trees. The trail has strung upon it, as upon a thread of silk, opalescent dawns and saffron sunsets.
Hamlin Garland

Sunday, June 8

Canoeing our lakes

Thanks to Randy from Algonquin Outfitters for telling us about the big sale coming up this weekend on Saturday, June 14. Jim and I are sure to stop by for a browse since we're on the lookout for a used canoe (kevlar, 16 or 17 foot, Jim says green, I say red... just to put the word out there). If you're in the market for a canoe or kayak too, come on up and check out the sale.

But maybe you already have a canoe hanging up at the back of the garage or tucked back behind the shed. If you think canoes are only for camping trips, think again. Strap your canoe to your roof for your next visit to the inn and we'll direct you to some great lakes and rivers where you can paddle for a couple hours or even make a whole day of it.

If you don't have a canoe or kayak, you can rent them for the day from the Algonquin Outfitters Huntsville store or their Oxtongue Lake location, or from Canoe Algonquin in Kearney. Arrowhead Park rents canoes for use on-site for as short a time as two hours in case you want to start with a shorter excursion.

There are so many lakes and rivers in the Almaguin Highlands and Muskoka, the choices are nearly endless when planning an outing on the water. Nearby, we have public boat access on Round Lake, just 5 km down Fern Glen Rd. There's also Long Lake (also a great swimming spot) just 6 km away. Randy tells me the Big East River near Arrowhead Park makes for a great day-paddle all the way into town (best if you have a group and two cars so you don't have to paddle back upstream).

The water is still a little cool for swimming, but it's the perfect time for a paddle. The lakes are cool, blue and beckoning!

Saturday, June 7

June Happenings

Here's a list of some of the local happenings around the area this month. Check back regularly as we add more as we find them.

Muskoka Triathlon & Duathlon
Ontario's Ironman qualifier. Athletes from all over compete in sprint and long courses. Also a 1 km fun run on Saturday.
June 14 & 15

Doors Open Muskoka
Take a glimpse inside some of the most interesting heritage buildings in Muskoka. Included on the tour are private cottages, homes, antique shop, museums, and more. Visit participating sites in Dorset, Dwight and Baysville. Free admission.
June 14

Algonquin Outfitters Summer Sale
Find some amazing deals on used kayaks, canoes & mountain bikes, along with some geat pricing on new outdoor gear, including skis, bikes and more.
The sale is located at Robinson's Independent (Hwy 60 & Hwy 11).
June 14

Icelandic Horse Show
Friendly competition and demonstrations at Clear Lake Farm's eighth annual Icelandic Horse show. Lunch and beverages available.
Free admission.
June 14

Yuk Yuk's Fundraiser
At the Burk's Falls Community Centre. Proceeds to the Our Community Works initiative. $20 per person. 705-382-3241 for information.
June 21, 8:00 pm

Kearney Centennial Homecoming Weekend
The town of Kearney celebrates it's 100th birthday with a series of events, starting with a
Wine and Cheese Reception on Friday June 27.
Saturday June 28 is
Fun Day, with events and activities in town, including a Penny Sale, log-sawing contest, and more. In the evening, the Community Centre is the location for a Lobster/Roast Beef Dinner, followed by an old-time dance with live music and square dances. Dinner tickets can be ordered in advance by calling 705-636-5438. Or try the popular all-you-can-eat Spaghetti Dinner at the Legion.
Sunday and Monday, enjoy the town beach and dock, or rent a canoe from the Canoe Algonquin in town.
The weekend wraps up on Tuesday July 1st with Canada Day celebrations.
June 27 - July 1

Canada Day Celebrations
Visit one of our local towns, including Huntsville, Kearney, Burk's Falls, and Magnetawan, to celebrate Canada's birthday in a fun and festive genuine community spirit. Think fireworks, food, flags, and more. Stay tuned for details.

Weekly Events:

Kayak Wednesdays
Wednesdays, beginning June 25
$15 per person. Algonquin Outfitters on Main St. will provide all the gear for an evening outing on the Muskoka River. Meet at the store before 6pm to register; guided paddle starts before 7pm and goes for about two hours, possibly all the way to Lake Vernon and back. For more information call Randy at 705-789-0262 ext. 36.

Huntsville Farmers Market
Thursdays, 9am - 2pm, Canadian Tire parking lot
Fridays, 9am - 2pm, beside Robinson's Independent

Muskoka Cruise-in Nights
Wednesday evenings
Saturday evenings

Antique cars, classics, hot rods and special interest automobiles on display. Door prizes and draws with proceeds going to local charities.
At the Canadian Tire parking lot in Huntsville.

Thursday, June 5

(Bargain) Hunting Season

This is the time of year when area residents and cottagers alike take stock of what they have, what they want, and more specifically — what they don't want. The result is a plethora of barn sales, yard sales, auctions, and community hall markets.

If you follow the old adage that "one man's trash is another man's treasure", then you know this is really Treasure Hunting Season. Up here in cottage country, many of the properties have been in a family for decades, or even for generations. This means they've had a lot of time to collect an assortment of varied and interesting treasures. The price is right, and best of all, this is recycling in its purest form.

While Jim and I not garage sale junkies, we do like to foray out on occasion to a sale or auction we see advertised in the local paper. Sometimes we get lucky and make some neat finds, such as an old steamer trunk at a barn sale near Burk's Falls. It now doubles as a luggage rack in the Homestead Room.
Another time I was the winning bidder of an antique
Chautauqua Art Desk at an auction in Sprucedale (warning: auction fever is a very real condition!). We've never found a place to display this interesting contraption, but next time you're at the inn, ask us to bring it out to see for yourself.

Since neither of us are voracious shoppers, we usually come away empty handed. But we don't mind; we go more for the chance to get out and discover some of the side roads and neighbourhoods we otherwise would never see.

If you'd like to indulge yourself in some treasure hunting on your next visit, we can make it easy for you. You can peruse our local paper to find the where and when of yard sales. We'll even fix you an early breakfast if you want to be ahead of the crowd for the best pickings.

If you're not an early bird and you love an auction, there's good news for you. Northern Auction Sales is holding an auction at their Sundridge hall every Sunday afternoon throughout the summer until Labour Day. Sundridge is an easy drive north of us, straight up Highway 11. Visit their website and click on Auction Sales for a preview or more information.

Happy Hunting!

I choose to live so that which comes to me as seed goes to the next as blossom and that which comes to me as blossom, goes on as fruit.
- Dawna Markova