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Blue Lake Ice Out 2014

9 May

It’s been a long… long… long… time, folks.  And a long… long… winter.  It’s fitting then, that this post be momentous.  So hear ye, hear ye… grab your swim trunks, snorkels and skis because Blue Lake has melted!! MK reports that the ice went out on ol’ blue on Wednesday, May 7th, inching up on last year’s record May 8th ice out by a mere day.

For some awesome pictures (per the request of JA) on the de-icing, and the launch of the loon platform, check out this slideshow from The Blue Lake Preservation Association!

Ray Dietrich Has Passed Away

8 Dec

Sad news as beloved Blue Lake maestro Ray Dietrich has passed away. Mr. Dietrich was loved around the lake for his friendly spirit, musical flair and great smile.

From JS Online:

Dietrich, Raymond H. Friday, December 6, 2013, age 91 years. Beloved husband and best friend of Ellie (nee Zilisch) for 65 years. Loving Father of Joan (Joel) Lueneburg, Ann (Dick) Cotter, and John Dietrich. Brother of Janis (Willard) Reck and the late Audrey (the late Rudolph) Hoppe. Loving grandfather to Tim (Jordyn), Chris, and Amanda Cotter and Justin, Allyson, and Elise Lueneburg. Also survived by nieces, nephews, other relatives and many friends. Raymond was deeply devoted to his family, his church, and his community. His love of music as an educator and church musician in the Milwaukee community spans 67 years. A graduate of Bay View High School, he attended UWM where he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education in 1948. The following year, he earned his Master’s of Music degree from the University of Michigan. He then returned to his alma mater, Bay View High School, where he was Chairman of the Music Department, Director of Choral Activities for 35 years, and responsible for the highly noteworthy Spring musicals, until he retired in 1984. From 1951 to 1997, Dietrich also served as Director of Music at Ascension Lutheran Church in Milwaukee, and after retiring continued as the Director Emeritus of Choirs. He proudly served his country with the U.S. Army Air Corps in WWII as a corporal in the squadron 331st Bombardment Group and was recognized for his service in 2011 as a member of the Stars & Stripes Honor Flight to Washington DC. Urged on by former Bay View High School choir members, Dietrich recently came out of retirement to organize and conduct an Alumni Choir of 70 voices. In 2009 he was honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Milwaukee Civic Music Association. In May 2011, Bay View High School’s auditorium was renamed the Raymond Dietrich Auditorium. Ray Dietrich inspired generations of Milwaukeeans through his profound dedication and passion for music the arts. One of Raymond’s greatest loves, which generated wonderful memories and great times with family and friends, is the Dietrich Family lake home on beautiful Blue Lake, in Minocqua, Wisconsin. Visitation MONDAY, December 9, 2013, 4:00 PM – 6:45 PM at ASCENSION LUTHERAN CHURCH, 1236 So. Layton Blvd. Funeral Services at 7:00 PM. Private interment Arlington Park Cemetery. In memorial, gifts and contributions are welcome and appreciated for either The Raymond Dietrich Music Scholarship: a scholarship to be set up for a graduating student of music from Bay View High School, or for Ascension Lutheran Church. A special thank you to Wheaton Franciscan Home Health and Hospice Services and our very special team of nurses, Caitlin, Terri, and granddaughter Amanda.

3 Summer Shots

5 Sep
Juvenile Bald Eagle and Nest

Juvenile Bald Eagle and Nest

Sunshine on Blue Lake

Sunshine on Blue Lake

Summer Storm Rolling over Blue Lake

Summer Storm Rolling over Blue Lake

Photos by EM.

Blue Lake’s Going Back to the Future

26 Aug

Exciting news as extended cable services and faster internet appears to be coming to certain areas on Blue Lake!

Reader TC writes in:

I have confirmation from Charter Communications that they are extending the cable service down Blue Lake Road to Marie Lane.  In the process they will also be bringing cable down Blue Lake Island Rd, Blue Lake Pines Rd and Hacker Dr.  Construction is to begin around Labor Day with hook ups possible by October/November.

Welcome to the late ’90s, BLMA!

A Glitch In Summer

14 Aug

The broiling, code-red days of June abruptly left the Blue Lake Metropolitan Area in July, leaving residents and vacationers with chilly, rainy temps reminiscent of late fall.  Bright, sunny days were few and far between, as Blue Lakers scrambled for long-sleeved fleece wraps and watched in bewilderment as red-tinged leaves began to drift down from trees.

4th of July weekend was a rare exception of near-perfect sunshine and warm breezes which fashioned an extra-patriotic holiday weekend.  In addition to the town of Mincoqua’s fireworks display bursting over Camp Agawak, folks around the lake put on their own shows.  C.R. writes in:

Hi!  Any chance you know who was responsible for the fantastic fireworks show on Little Blue on the 4th of July?  It was someone who lives in the channel and our kids were beyond delighted to see “real” and awesome fireworks on the lake the night.  (And as parents we were THRILLED we didn’t have to fight the traffic in town to take them there.)  I would love to thank whoever it was but have no clue who to thank!  If you know…I would love to hear.  Thanks!

Sorry, C.R., I don’t know whodunnit.  Anyone else have any idea?

After Independence Day, temperatures continued to plummet, culminating in overnight frosts and 40-degree mornings. While folks built fires in fireplaces, area wildlife romped free.  Eagle and loon activity continues to abound, and a wolf has been spotted rummaging through compost piles along Blue Lake’s southern territories.

On August 3rd, Blue Lake Pines hosted their annual Wing Fest, which, again, was a well-attended success. Despite chilly, puffy-coat weather, wings were chomped, horseshoes were thrown, ping-pong was bounced, libations were drunk, and plenty of marshmallows were roasted.

Notable real estate transactions this summer include the super-quick sale of an empty lot between the red boat house and Blue Lake Pines by a Blue Lake summer vacationer to a Blue Lake summer resident.

Did you know Blue Lake has its fair share of pilots? I count at least 5 people on the lake certified to fly everything from seaplanes to jets. Enjoy this heart-stopping video of a young Blue Laker’s adventures at the air show in Oshkosh this month:

In the Cockpit with Red Bull Stunt Pilot Kirby Chambliss and Blue Lake’s Daniel Onofryton

In these (chilly Alaskan sled) dog-days of summer, catch a couple sunny but crisp photos of the lake these past few weeks:

Sun sparkling on Blue Lake 07/29/13

Sun sparkling on Blue Lake 07/29/13

Behind the weed bed, looking east 07/29/13

Behind the weed bed, looking northeast 07/29/13

Pontoon heading around Blue Lake island. 07/29/13

Pontoon heading around Blue Lake island. 07/29/13

Hacker Drive Garage Sale

12 Jul

Saturday July 13th and Sunday 14th, 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.  Housewares, clothing, furniture, jewelry, pet goods, old things.  Friends and family keep stopping by and dropping stuff off to be sold.  Mens’ suits for 7 dollars.  A lot of awesome stuff for 25 cents.  Film memorabilia.  SUNDAY AFTER 10 AM FILL A BAG FOR A BUCK.  We just want to get rid of this stuff!!!  Garage opens promptly at 7 AM both days.  Highway 51 to Blue Lake Road, 2.6 miles to Hacker Drive, first right to 7700 Hacker Drive.

An Eagle, A Fish and A Sunset

10 Jul

Monday evening, July 8th:

An eagle, a fish and a sunset over Blue Lake.  (The fish is draped over the pine bough by the eagle's left talon.)

An eagle, a fish and a sunset over Blue Lake. (The fish is draped over the pine bough by the eagle’s left talon.)