Montgomery Wards Raft - A Second Life

On a recent visit to Twin Lakes, we spent some time with friends at their place up on Lake Elizabeth.  They have a few water toys that the kids got to try out including one of those massive water trampolines.  What was most interesting was that the kids figured out how to use raft and paddle that they boarded from the dock to navigate out to the trampoline - all the while staying mostly dry and out of the lake.  I talked with the Babe that night and she said that having the ability to pilot her own 'boat' out on the lake was a lot of fun. It was only about 20 feet from the dock to the trampoline, but that whole time, she was the captain and first mate.  She was on her own.  And, she expressed that she liked it!  So...while we're not in the spot to score a trampoline, we happen to be in possession of an old raft.  My Dad gave it to me as he was closing down Coloma and for the past year, it sat up in the garage in Twin Lakes.  Until now.

I dragged it to the porch, hooked up the pump and got busy.  It filled right up.

And so did my memory bank.

This thing is from my childhood.  I remember using it with my sister Vic on Paw Paw Lake.  I remember my sister using it more than I ever did.  She'd load it up with one of her friends and they'd go paddling up and down the channel.  Being independent young adults.

So, imagine my delight when I saw my kids jump in this thing on Lake Elizabeth and take it out for a spin.  It is a mighty fine raft.  Turns out, it has a little tear in the vinyl, but nothing that a good quality patch kit can't repair.

As the title suggest, this thing is vintage.  It is from Montgomery Wards - which was one of my Dad's very favorite stores!  Check out the label below.  So happy to see this thing get a second life.


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