Lake Effect Co. has been a long time coming. In fact, I think it’s been 27 years in the making, starting the day I first set eyes on my family cottage in Three Lakes, WI. It was cold and snowy, and my parents may have forgotten my winter jacket as we started the drive North late in the evening. Flannel pajamas and blankets kept me warm that trip -- oh -- and a heart bursting with a new love for this so-called “up north.” A place I would come to learn was full of endless adventure and excitement.
My love continued to grow with every trip, and I soon came to realize a few things. First, I am not alone in this love. Ask almost anyone from the Midwest if they have a “lake story” and you’ll see an instant smile as they’re flooded with memories from some sacred place. Second, this love cannot be contained. Lake people can be obnoxious about their need to get to the water. Summer is precious time, so you’ll know a lake lover for their inability to really perform during those summer months. It is time filled with early morning swims, fishing, ski sessions, paddle boarding, kayaking and sunrises to fit in. And if they’re heading out of town, they definitely need to avoid weekend traffic by leaving midday Thursday and coming home late Monday. There are sacrifices to be made on the quest for lake time. Third, this love must be shared. The gifts of the water are not reserved for any special type of person. The lake heals, delights, connects friends and family, and showcases God’s magnificence. These are gifts I truly wish everyone could enjoy.
I hope Lake Effect Co. forms a community for people to tell their stories, unite over a shared sense of adventure, and savor the beauty many find restorative to the soul. I’ve spent my whole life coming back to my happy place in tough times, leaving renewed, my heart filled back up. Whether it was a trip to my cottage or a walk down to the Lake Michigan shore, the water helps me remember my place in it all. I’m small. This world is large. When I’m by the shore, I don’t forget that there is pure good on this earth, and sometimes I just need to move and breathe and take in something beautiful and grand to remind myself of that. You deserve that, too. So whether this space inspires a trip to one of the many spots we will share with you, or simply helps you momentarily escape to a simpler time and place, you’ve experienced the Lake Effect. And while my aim is not to shift millions in tourism and travel dollars, even featuring someone’s business that is full of love and tradition to a new set of eyes will help me in achieving my goal.
So, jump in! Read, shop, connect in the blog comments or on social media (use #LongLiveLakeLife on social media to catch our attention). And if you have a lake story that you’d like to tell or a lake community that you’d like to share, please send me a note at LakeEffectCo@gmail.com.