Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 86

CROSSING THE LINE

by John Morris

Flying Dutchman
Besides all the pleasures of getting out on the water and generally messing about with boats, one of the most enjoyable aspects
of our boating lives is meeting the often eccentric - no, make
that always eccentric - people in the nautical galaxy.
Bernie Luttmer isn't the most offside person I've ever met,
but over the very many years we've been in contact, he has
shown me a flavour all his own. At an after-boat show dart game
one evening, I still recall his team chasing him down to throw
when it was his turn. He wanted to win; he just wanted to
schmooze more.
Visiting Swan's to take a look at a boat I was interested in not
long ago, the flavour was strawberry shortcake. His occasionally
hardworking crew was sitting on the porch of the office enjoying
the delicious cake Jean Luttmer had whipped up. The place
looked more like a lazy cottage vacation than a busy boatyard,
but that seems to be the way things roll out in Pickering. Selling
boats? Yeah, we'll get to that.
Bernie and Jean have been pretty successful in the boat business, although Bernie never seemed totally happy about things.
Maybe it's the Dutch personality - going Dutch is about as
much of a stereotype as wooden shoes. There's something to it.
Bernie's cheerful disposition thrives on a certain level of complaint mixed with his obvious accomplishments.
Those successes are not to be understated. The Luttmer
story parallels the evolution of Frenchman's Bay where the
Luttmers set up their dealership (and life). The area evolved
over the intervening decades from a swampy rural outpost to a
pretty slick, if non-urban, destination. The derelict rock piles
left from the original harbour entrance that attacked your keel
are now replaced with shiny piers. The lights match the charts
(now, that's a change!), the entrance is dredged, and alongside
the no longer mosquito-infested bay, there's a pretty sweet village-like new development. Modern and happening in a "whereis-that-exactly?" kind of way.
Bernie's casual approach disguises his impact on the southern Ontario sailing community. Starting from a ragtag 20-slip
marina, Swan's has grown over the years and sold dockloads of
Vandestadt and McGruer Sirens and Siriuses, 5-600 Catalina
sail boats of various sizes, Grew/Chris Craft and Larson powerboats, and various other lines including most recently, Dufour.
Frenchman's Bay has been a base that spawned outposts in
Penetang, Montreal, and even Wilson, New York, where the

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86

branch continues. Take a look at the number of Catalina 25s,
30s, and 36s around these days - they mostly landed via Swan's.
In 1958, the Luttmer family immigrated to Edmonton.
Bernie and Jean met at the University of Alberta then moved to
Toronto in 1971, where they immediately bought a mahogany
International 14 sailboat before they had even bought a bed.
The next question (after they got the bed!) was where to store
the boat; they found a spot at Ralph Swan's Marina at the foot
of Liverpool Road in Pickering, Ontario. In 1976, the Luttmers
abandoned their "real" careers (Bernie was an engineer with a
pool company; Jean was a Consumers Gas Betty Brite home
economist) and went into the boat business full-time.
Forty-one years later, the couple is hanging it up to take it
easier, doing a lot of traveling and skiing. Bernie will still keep
his hand in the marine industry as Canadian distributor of a
Netherlands-based (of course) manufacturer of water driven
bow thruster systems. They have moved from the home they
established back into a Frenchman's Bay cottage, more like the
spot they first lived in when they discovered the then wilderness
outpost. Retired, but still here. Good. *

M A R I N A
A Parkbridge Marina

A Parkbridge Marina

A Parkbridge Marina

Marinas.com

Georgian Bay
Atherley Narrows

DeceMber 2017


http://www.parkbridgeMarinas.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Canadian Yachting December 2017

Vantage Point: Little Boat, Big Boat – Where Did You Start?
Club Profile: Gimli Yacht Club
Galley Guys: The Galley Guys Travel to Newfoundland
Travel Destinations: The Middens of Galiano Island
Profile of a Cruising Family: Redefining the Face of Yachting in Canada
Marine Electronics: Special Feature – A Guide to Maritime VHF Radio for Pleasure Craft
Marine Electronics: Special Feature – AIS - Peering Atop Islands and Around Bends
The Port Hole
Marine Electronics: Special Feature – WiFi Boosters
Sail Review: Dehler 38
Power Review: Cruisers Yachts Cantius 50
Power Review: Jeanneau NC 895
Summer Event Coverage: Poker Run 101
Crossing the Line: Flying Dutchman
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - Cover1
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - Cover2
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 3
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - Vantage Point: Little Boat, Big Boat – Where Did You Start?
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 5
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - Club Profile: Gimli Yacht Club
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 7
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 8
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 9
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 10
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 11
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - Galley Guys: The Galley Guys Travel to Newfoundland
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 13
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 14
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 15
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - Travel Destinations: The Middens of Galiano Island
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 17
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 18
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 19
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 20
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 21
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 22
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 23
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - Profile of a Cruising Family: Redefining the Face of Yachting in Canada
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 25
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 26
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 27
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - Marine Electronics: Special Feature – A Guide to Maritime VHF Radio for Pleasure Craft
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 29
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 30
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 31
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 32
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 33
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 34
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 35
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - Marine Electronics: Special Feature – AIS - Peering Atop Islands and Around Bends
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 37
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 38
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - The Port Hole
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 40
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 41
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 42
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 43
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 44
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 45
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 46
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 47
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 48
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 49
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 50
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 51
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - Marine Electronics: Special Feature – WiFi Boosters
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 53
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 54
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 55
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - Sail Review: Dehler 38
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 57
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 58
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 59
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - Power Review: Cruisers Yachts Cantius 50
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 61
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 62
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 63
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 64
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 65
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - Power Review: Jeanneau NC 895
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 67
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 68
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 69
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 70
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 71
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - Summer Event Coverage: Poker Run 101
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 73
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 74
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 75
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 76
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 77
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 78
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 79
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 80
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 81
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 82
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 83
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 84
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - 85
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - Crossing the Line: Flying Dutchman
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - Cover3
Canadian Yachting December 2017 - Cover4
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