Notes from the Island
December 1994

Yesterday there was a sprinkling of snow on the lawn and a thin layer of ice in the northern swamp. With the exception of a few maples, the trees are bare. The white sycamore bark stands out dramatically against the grays and browns of the winter woods.

This morning there was one great blue heron at the lower tip of Billy's Island between here and Rupperts and another in the northern swamp. Mallards, wood ducks and Canada geese are congregating in the area. I'm not sure if they're passing through or staying for the winter. There seem to be a lot of wrens fluttering about in the thickets and underbrush, and now that the leaves are gone, it's easier to see the woodpeckers as they sweep from tree to tree and hammer against the trunks.

Jane and Paul Englestadt did a wonderful job hosting the Sycamore Island Social on October 30. They called the membership list and procured refreshments, including a special cake with Sycamore Island on the frosting. I thought the turnout was great and people enjoyed themselves. Let's do it again next year.

The Workfest was also a great success. We raked the lawn, hauled in the floats, stocked firewood, painted the women's bathroom, stored the picnic tables under the deck and disposed of trash. A special thanks to Marcia and George Loeb who grilled the chicken. The potlucks are just getting better and better.

The water has been turned off for the winter to prevent the pipes from freezing. There is one chemical toilet in the women's bathroom, one working outside faucet behind the clubhouse and plenty of firewood for the stove. Come down and enjoy the solitude.

-- Peter Jones, Sycamore Island Caretaker