Thursday, June 11, 2009

The Floating Dock at the Bayview

(Photo courtesy of Charlene Cole, Sandy Creek Historian - thanks Charlene!)

Bill Mitchell employed a unique design to his dock at the Bayview back in the 60's. It was a huge wooden platform with dozens of WWII surplus 55 gallon drums affixed to the underside, anchored to the bottom on huge concrete slabs. I loved that dock. As a ten-year-old it was a fascinating thing to walk on because it sank and bobbed and bounced as you walked on it - dipping up and down in the water. When we thought nobody was looking several of us kids would spread out and get her rockin'. Mr. Mitchell caught us doing that one time and gave us hell. He said next time he'd tell my Dad (they were good friends) - then there would be hell-to-pay.

We fished off that dock almost every day during the summer, catching mostly sunfish, yellow perch, and little smallmouth bass. Once in a while you would land a "mud puppy", which is a strange looking dark brown slimy salamander-looking creature that is not common knowledge until you catch one.

I loved the days that were calm and warm, with the sun glinting back low in the sky at you after supper. Between supper and sunset was the best time to fish off that dock. I can close my eyes now and remember the glorious smell of the exhaust of 2-cycle outboard engines, see the rainbow colors of gasoline decorating the water's surface, and listen to the multiple drones of power boats everywhere. At twilight we would walk towards shore, the distinct fragrance of rotting mooneyes and damp seaweed along the water's edge engulfing us, quickening our pace.

This typical calm scene was always accompanied by the infamous Bayview jukebox streaming audio out of the open screened windows on the saloon-side. That old jukebox contained a remarkable assortment of music that appealed almost anybody. Country, Rock-a-Billy, Folk, Pop, Rock, Love Ballads, Big-Band... it was all there - 3 songs for a dime. My favorite was Glenn Miller's "In the Mood" because Mr. Mitchell would always crank that one up loud...the older folks usually got up and did a little jitterbugging to Glenn Miller...

Once I invited my school-buddies Dan McGraw and Mike Presley to go fishin' with me off the Bayview dock. Being only 12 years old or so, I don't believe they had never been to Sandy Pond before and it seemed to be a real treat for them. Later in life Dan served honorably in the US Air Force (manning Cold War ICBM silos) and Mike became one of the areas BEST stone masons...Gosh, I wish we were there drowning worms again...just for a day would be almost Heaven.


  1. Mary MaurerJune 13, 2014

    Nothing like the Bayview, and nothing on that spot will ever compare! Bill and Lynn make everyone feel at home, and without a doubt, Lynn made the best pies in the whole world! How wonderful it would be to go back to that era, and enjoy the grandeur and simple elegance of that landmark!

  2. I completely agree. The atmosphere in that area of The Pond today is so much different, though not necessarily better or worse. Also, I am compelled to mention that Mr. and Mrs. Mitchell also served great cheeseburgers! I don't remember eating anything else there except the cheeseburgers! Every time Dad brought the family there for a bite to eat, my Mom would get so exasperated with me ...because I always ordered a cheeseburger, fries, and a Coke.


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