I thought the residents of The Big Picture would like to see some of the photos I took on this year’s fishing junket and economic debate session at Leen’s Lodge in Grand Lake Stream Maine. Our host Charles Driza did a tremendous job of taking care of our various wants and needs. If you ever want to take the family on a really great vacation, call Charles at 800-995-3367 or go to www.leenslodge.com. Here is a sunset shot from day 1.
The photo below shows Charles Driza in a rare moment of rest during one of the lunches he organized for us each day. Charles is a mechanical engineer by training and a registered Maine Guide. Besides running Leen’s, Charles is particularly known for his excellent hunting trips, both in ME and in LA during the winter months.
We had great weather this year and the cooperation of the Almighty in this regard also allowed me to capture some of my favorite economists and analysts for posterity. First of course is our gracious host on TBP Barry Ritholtz, who is shown here in the dining room of the main lodge after a bit of surfing on his ever ready MAC notebook. And yes, Leen’s has WiFi and the BB even works a little. I left my BB in the cabin where it belongs.
Barry looks like a very happy cat because we were all waiting for dinner, which at Leen’s is a feast. I am amazed I was able to get back into my car after five days of eating great food and drinking the endless supply of wine provided by David Kotok, the genius behind this event. As I said at dinner on day 2, David Kotok is not only a great manager of other people’s money and a great friend, but he is also a committed public citizen because he has taken as his mission in life to broaden dialog and understanding among financial professionals all over the world. See David below holding forth on an island in the middle of the Big Lake during the lunches the the Maine Guides put on for us each day.
We had almost 50 participants in this year’s fishing trip, including a number of new inductees. We did not catch enough catfish to have the traditional investiture ceremony as last year, but we still had some fun with the newbies. One of the names the readers of TBP will recognize is our friend Josh Rosner, who arrived at Leen’s sporting a very impressive rod and reel that it took us several days to learn how to operate. Something about magnets and centrifugal force. Finally, we read the instructions. Duh! The photo below shows Josh in the bow of a guide’s canoe.
When we are out on the lake, we generally use these beautiful hand-build canoes with small outboard motors. These craft have square sterns and are remarkably stable. Our guide for the past several years has been Dale Tobey (djtobey[at]netzero.net), the past president of the Maine Guides Association and a real honest-to-God woodsman who builds his own canoes in the wintertime, raises hounds and hunts and traps in the woods of Maine. In the photo below, you see Dale with Matt Greco of CNBC, who caught a good number of bass on the last day.
Besides Charles Driza, the people who really make the trip work are the guides and the staff of Leen’s, who all live in the local community and work from dawn till late at night to make our experience a real treat. The first photo below shows the Maine Guides after the lunch on Saturday. The lady on the far right of the photo, Sue, baked us fresh pies and cobblers in a dutch oven over an open fire. Randy Spencer of the Maine Guides is in the center front row. Randy and CNBC’s Steve Liesman provided great musical entertainment in the evenings for the group. Randy writes and performs songs, and has also written a history of the Maine Guides.
Here are a copy of photos of Steve and the other campers during one of the lunches on an island in the middle of the Big Lake, including Bob Eisenbeis, Harvey Rosenblum and Jay Dwight. There is also a shot of the canoes used by the group.
Finally, we have to pay a special tribute to Laura King, our hostess at Leen’s Lodge. Laura is a Passamaquody Indian who lives in Princeton Maine. A life-long resident, Laura has many duties at the lodge, including cooking & telling the guests where the fish are! Laura is known for her helpful attitude and great desserts. Laura’s family members, including her husband Gary, and daughters Bea and Fay, are often helping her at the lodge as the work load increases in the summer season. Leen’s Lodge is blessed to have Laura King and the other members of the Leen’s family to serve its guests. And beware: Laura is a great poker player.