Day Six: The Richardson Rendezvous Is Called to Order
Let the rendezvous begin! Four Richardson boats and about thirty members attended. The people came from areas of Chesapeake Bay, Narragansett Bay, the Canadian St. Lawrence, Delaware Bay and New York State.
The Richardson Boat Company, located in North Tonawanda, New York near Buffalo went bankrupt in 1962. They produced very high quality wooden motor cruisers that catered to the high-end of the market.
As the boats aged, their quality construction, good looks, and comfortable interiors sustained their longevity. Owners willing to put in the time for maintenance developed great loyalty to the brand.
Today, the Richardson Boat Owners Association is a group of gregarious elderly people. Nearly all are retired and some are in their eighties. These boats are a member of their family.
The Richardson group scheduled a field trip to Onandaga Lake, a 4.6 sq. mi. lake in suburban Syracuse. It had been the most contaminated lake in America due to two hundred years of chemical manufacturing on its shores. Mercury and other poisons had destroyed nearly all aquatic life in the waters and killed vegitation along the shores. In the 1980’s Honeywell bought the chemical plant and in the 1990’s was legally compelled to clean up the lake.
Honeywell’ss extensive remediation effort will be completed in a few years. Over $500 million has been invested. The lake now supports over 50 species of fish, rare ducks have found habitat, and bald eagles have been sighted. The lake no longer stinks and the residents have an enviable community resource in lakefront bike and hiking paths.
After dinner, the club meeting came to order in the Baldwinsville Methodist Church’s community room volunteered by a local member. Old business, new business, changes to the by-laws, discussion of issues, and the presentation of annual trophies for best boat. We were proud to see Phil in a different role as he lead the meeting in his role as the Richardson club president.
I took the afternoon to bicycle around the town. I’ll close the day with pictures of homes in Baldwinsville that represent the historic charm of mid-state New York.