We braved the wind and waves last week to meet with fellow islanders from just beyond the border to brainstorm ideas, share stories and just support each other in our efforts to host a tall ship on our respective islands. It wasn’t easy to convince my husband that the wind would hold off to allow us to boat over and actually return before sunset. When one lives on an island, weather, particularly wind, is the first topic of conversation in the morning….often before “good morning”! South Bass, Middle Bass, Kelleys, and Pelee have much in common regardless of the border that separates us. We are all trying to put together a festival commemorating the War of 1812 and the Battle of Lake Erie without flowing funds. We each want our “home” island to be recognized, we want to share our small tourist “draw” and find a way that we can bring history buffs to the place where it all happened! It’s all about community. None of us brought up the fact that we might be at a disadvantage compared to mainland Ontario and Ohio, we just thought of ways to succeed. Middle Bass Island has a permanent population of 30, yet when they were offered Tall Ship Madelaine, within 2 hours, funds were secured at the one and only local restaurant by George’s wife. Madelaine was in. We were excited knowing that our small population wasn’t going to hold any of us back. And it won’t. We are all going to put our islands on the map.