Saturday, June 5, 2010

No Brats in Sight

We docked Thursday night on the Oswego Canal in Phoenix, NY—home of the famous “Bridgehouse Brats.” This is a club for local teens who give boaters a warm welcome.

When you dock at the Phoenix marina, Brats will offer to wash your boat, take out your trash, pump your fuel, fill your water tank, pump out the holding tank, watch your boat while you go off sightseeing . . . and all of these services, amazingly, are free. (Just one example of the powerful "Brotherhood of Boaters." More on that later.) Alas, when we arrived, school was still in session. No brats in sight.

The Oswego canal’s Lock #1 is right in the heart of Phoenix and the marina is at the entrance to the lock. On Friday morning we woke to bustling activity on the far side of the lock.

It was “Canal Day” for local schoolchildren. One of the canal’s adorable blue tugboats had been brought in, and interpreters in period costumes (overalls and straw hats for the men, long calico dresses for the women) circulated among the crowds of kids.

An event organizer told us they were glad we showed up when we did, to insert an actual canal boat into the scene.


  1. Bon Voyage...Cynthia and Bill! what an adventure lies ahead of you...It's so much fun for us land lubbers to follow the journey...be safe and have fun xo Lisa

  2. Cynthia and Bill save the day with their authentic canal boat! I love it.

  3. What a fun day for the children and you! An authentic canal boat for them to see and experience. You must be having the time of your life. Like Lisa said, have fun and be safe.
    Aunt Mary

  4. Hi Cynthia and Bill. Bon voyage! We're sending Ally off to prom in a few minutes. In the meantime, you've received some mail, and I realized I don't know what email address to use to tell you what you have... is it cyberger@comcast.net?

    Hope the oil spill doesn't foul up your plans too much. Maybe you can burn up some of the oil in your diesel...


  5. darn those brats not being around to take care of your boat! also let me know what email to send Allys prom pictures too if it is different than the one that dad posted. Happy travels!


  6. Hey Cynthia! Bon Voyage, etc etc. I ran into Christina at Wegman's, and we wailed together companionably about your departure, yet marveled at the awaiting adventure. Christina was buying some sort of medication for a trip to Sweden that she's taking next week. She's always on her way to Sweden...Will be following your journey with avid attention, be sure to let me know when you have an idea about your arrival near the port of Chicago so I can figure out a road trip.. XOXO

  7. Hi Christina! I am trying to do boat pilates, not always successully. Pam look for us to be near Chicago in late August/early Sept