Our last full day together, we decided to travel to the small tourist towns of Saugatuck and Douglas, best known for their picturesque harbors, quaint shops, art galleries, sidewalk eateries and beautiful parks.
Decorative Public Rest Rooms
A Fox Squirrel
Saugatuck is also the “home port” for the Harbor Duck.
Our driver/skipper … who kept the entire group in stitches with his very funny monologue
Driving through the streets of Saugatuck and Douglas
Until the end of the road
But we kept on going … past
Four gals on paddleboards
A tugboat which has been grounded for several decades
Several herring gulls
A ketch which appeared in “50 First Dates” with Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore
A tourist sternwheeler
The Chain Ferry
A former lighthouse … now a private residence
Before returning to dry land
Where we saw Dave and LaDonna
After a post-“crusie” photo
our next stop was to view the Holland Harbor Lighthouse,
The first lighthouse built at this location was a small, square wooden structure erected in 1872. In 1880, the lighthouse service installed a new light atop a metal pole in a protective cage. The oil lantern was lowered by pulleys for service. At the turn of the 20th century a steel tower was built for the light and in 1907 the present building was erected. Its gabled roof was designed to reflect the Dutch influence in the area. The lighthouse was automated in 1932.
located at the entrance of a channel connecting Lake Michigan with Lake Macatawa, and which gives Holland access to Lake Michigan.
Small sloop entering the Harbor Channel
Kids jumping off the Port channel breakwater
Debbie and I then went to see the De Zwaan Windmill and Gardens. The windmill’s name is Dutch for The Swan or Graceful Bird. It is the only authentic, working Dutch windmill in the United States. First was erected in Krommenie, Netherlands in 1761, it was carefully taken apart, transported to Michigan and painstakingly reconstructed … and in April 1965, the 125-foot windmill was formally dedicated on Windmill Island, a 36-acre site reclaimed from a swamp on the eastern end of Lake Macatawa.
Capstan for rotating the vanes to face the wind
Looking up from the Capstan
Wind vane (structure)
Looking up at the vane blades
Bees waxed cogs and gears convert the windmills vane motion to a circular motion of the grinding wheel
Five-story shaft for hauling raw grain to the grinding level
Wheel and rope for lifting grain up the shaft
Section of vanes on the windmill during World War II with German bullet holes evident
Alisa Crawford, De Zwaan’s miller … and the only certified Dutch miller in the United States.
The grounds and gardens we passed while walking to the windmill were also both interesting and beautiful.
The “Four Columns” street organ
is a well-loved and famous, 69 metal key organ often played in the streets of Breda, Rotterdam and Amsterdam.
Rear Views of the Organ’s Operation … with Music being automatically fed through it
Pipes and drums
Leaving Windmill Park, we passed a steel company’s facility where humorous “sculptures” lined the road.
This evening we had a farewell dinner at the
where Bill and Carol had arranged for a table right on the water.
Only three of us ordered desserts … however, Debbie decided to sample mine first. And, Yes, I ate the whole thing!
This evening, we sat outside over some wine and were amazed by a gorgeous sunset.
Since meeting as 28 strangers in 2011 in Dawson Creek, British Columbia, many of us have built close and what I believe will be life-long friendships … which has made our past three reunions so enjoyable and rewarding. We are already planning and looking forward to our 2015 get together!