I've been reading a lot of blog posts lately about vacations.... relaxing by the water, enjoying good food and spending quality time with family. It's all made me rather nostalgic for my own family vacations of the past. Each year, my step family would go to a place called Bangor Lodge on Lake Muskoka. It was a beautiful little place with friendly staff, kid friendly evening activities, a nine hole golf course and nice boat docks for my BILs boats. I best liken the experience to the resort in Dirty Dancing.
Quite honestly, Bangor was a place out of the past. Everyone ate dinner together in the dining room, entire families around tables. My step family would always be between 13 and 17 people. Bangor is a large part of the reason I took up golf (mind you, I'm still not very good). Bangor was one of the first places I spent a lot of time with my step family. Bangor is synonymous with shuffleboard in my mind. Just the name 'Ol Mort makes me smile, thinking of the kids horse race, wooden horses and all.
I had to save up my calories for the chocolate chip muffins served every other day. I made fun of the large groups of line dancers that would sometimes be there during the same week as my family. They line danced in the pool, on the golf course and in the dance hall. I once saw people practicing steps in the buffet line at dinner.
Bangor was a unique experience, a true family vacation. About two years ago the family that owned and operated it sold the place. Family members were getting old and it was what was best for them. The new owners, from what I heard, planned to tear down the buildings and put up cottages or townhomes for new vacationers. My BIL, who was in the area for a boat show, drove through shortly after the sale. The golf course was no longer nicely manicured. The clubhouse was closed up. It was the end of an era. Bangor Lodge only exists in my memories now. I miss that place now....
* photos from Adam Birrell's flickr page (Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/30483468@N00/sets/72157605030844413/ retrieved on 8/22/08)