MELDRUM BAY—Having spent previous summers on Manitoulin and with her family having property in Silver Water, working here for the summer is an easy fit for Madison Wagar, who is operating the Mississagi Lighthouse and Campgrounds this summer.
“I applied for this job because of my love for the Island,” Ms. Wagar told the Recorder. “I grew up coming here every year and have gone to the lighthouse every year. I wanted the opportunity to live here and do my part to keep the Island amazing.”
“My name is Madison Wagar, but when I am on the Island I take my mother’s maiden name of Lovelace as I am better known here by that name,” she told the Recorder. “I am originally from Huntsville but my family has property in Silver Water that we have had for generations. This is where I spend my summer months every year.”
“I am running the campground by myself with the help of my Australian shepherd mixed rescue dog Alice. It’s just the two of us here this year,” said Ms. Wagar.
Previously Ms. Wagar worked at the Hidden Valley Resort in Huntsville as a server/bartender and cook. “I also work with horses training them on various farms in the area.”
“I am currently a college student,” continued Ms. Wagar. She will be returning to Sir Sandford Fleming College in the fall for her second year as a Fish and Wildlife Technology student.
“The lease I have for now is one year but I am hopeful to speak with the MTA (Manitoulin Tourism Association) to extend this and come back next year if all works out,” said Ms. Wagar.
Ms. Wagar explained, “I am offering a campground that will run much like it did last year, I have ice and firewood available. I am hoping to have some supplies available for campers, as well as something for day time visitors such as ice cream, pop, coffee, etc. Now the fog born building is a lodge for people to come and enjoy a cup of coffee and sit by the fire when weather isn’t great.”
“The lighthouse is still a museum but I’m working on trying to have it available to rent out to campers. So people may stay the night in the lighthouse,” she stated.
“I am hoping to do some work around the property. I have started with fixing much of the plumbing (broken or leaking pipes, showers, toilets, sinks etc) and will be continuing with my little projects throughout the season. Now I am looking at trying to paint some of the smaller buildings on property,” said Ms. Wagar.
She explained, “I am also trying to start to do small events, I would like to have barbecue nights, movie nights, and maybe have a local musician come and play one night,” continued Ms. Wagar. “I’m not sure about all of that but I do know that I want to try to bring tourists out but I would also like to draw in more locals and give them a place to come and enjoy and meet people.”
“We are here 24/7. I am here all the time and have had to move onto the property to meet the needs of customers as people typically arrive late at night or early morning,” said Ms. Wagar. “I can typically be found in the fog horn building between 6 am and 8 pm unless I have to make a trip out for supplies or need to run around and fix something.”
“I am very excited for this season! I have already met some amazing people and spoken with many via email who have been coming to this property for 30 plus years. Can’t wait to see what the summer will bring,” added Ms. Wagar.