Crystal Lake Rd. Crystal Lake
Arch and Peg Dettman opened their store in 1950. They were not located on the Lake. The store was at the south west corner of Crystal Lake. To access the store from the lake, you had to tie your boat to the dock at the bottom of the Queen’s Line and walk up to the road.
It was a family run business. They opened up on the 24th of May long weekend and all the weekends until July 1st. They were then open daily until the Labour Day weekend. Then, they were only open weekends until Thanksgiving. At the end of the season, the store supplied all the food for the Austin Hunt Camp at the head of the lake in November. The grandchildren looked forward to the stores closing for the season.That is when they were all treated to lots of the left over “goodies”.
The store was stocked with canned goods, bakery goods, dairy products, ice cream and frozen novelties such as popsicles etc. All the children wanted Arch to make their ice cream cones as he was the generous one. Candies, chocolate bars, chips and the like were there, bulk candies were 3 for a penny. What a difficult decision it was for the children to spend their dime on. Pop of all varieties were, of course, great sellers. Cigarettes and tobaccos were available. There was a lake delivery service for the “mothers” who stayed with their children all summer. (The dads came back for the weekends.)
Soon they provided fresh vegetables, frozen meat, such as steaks, chops, hams, bacon, and hamburger, and, of course, hot dogs. And, there were large blocks of cheese waiting to be cut to order.
Arch travelled out to the highway to pick up the daily newspapers. There was and is, a large number of mail boxes out front and of course cottagers would have mail forwarded to them c/o Dettman’s Store.
Blocks of ice, cut from the frozen lake in winter were transported up to the store. There it was stored, in layers of saw dust, to keep it solid through the coming spring, summer andfall months, until it was time to harvest more ice. They had a Bell telephone phone booth installed after quite a lengthy struggle to get it. Approximately 1953, Shell gas pumps were installed. This was a great necessity for the lake dwellers. You could fill a 5 gallon boat tank for the sum of $2.50, including the oil!
In 1962, Arch passed away, and Peg continued to run the store with Faye, who was still living at home, and June. In 1964, Peg passed her real estate course and provided a great service for people to enjoy this great lake. She had many happy clients and many new customers for her store.
In 1978, June and Tom, replaced the old store with a new two story building. The store was at ground level and a beautiful living quarters for Peg was upstairs. Peg retired from being a storekeeper in 1986. June took over the store with Peg assisting her on weekends. In 1989, Peg passed away, leaving a huge sadness for family, neighbours, friends and cottagers. He was greatly missed by all.
June attained her real estate license in 1990 and carried on the tradition of selling properties to many happy and grateful cottagers. The store at this time had a larger variety of items, and, of course, her lemon pies for which she had numerous orders. In 1990, Tom built a large two story building for boat storage which enabled cottagers to store their boats locally. In 2002/2003, June sold the store to Peter Beverly. The store is now known as the Crow’s Nest.