|Witz's Marina & Campsite, Inc.
HCR 1 Box 660
Skanee, Michigan 49962
Winter Phone Numbers:
|WITZ'S MARINA HISTORY
The Witz Family has been associated with the Skanee, Michigan area for many years. This family of Lake Superior lighthouse keepers manned several lighthouses from Jacobsville to Stannard Rock in the late 1800ís to 1920ís. It was at the Jacobsville lighthouse that Vivan Witz, developer of Witz's Marina and Campground, was born in 1911.
His parents, Franklin and Catherine (McCrimmon) Witz lived in Skanee for a time following their years as lighthouse keepers. It was during this time that Vivan met and married Joyce Kunick of Baraga, Michigan in 1937. They lived at various locations in the Skanee area and for a short time in Detroit during their early years together.
In the early 1940ís they purchased a parcel of land near Huron Bay. A large portion of the property was considered by most as worthless swamp land. But this couple had a vision that one day this could become a prosperous and safe refuge for those who chose to use the waters of Huron Bay and surrounding Lake Superior as a vacation playground and sports fishery. Many years would pass before this dream would become a reality. In the meantime, they built their home and raised a family of five children.
During the 1950ís and 60ís, Vivan and Joyce never abandoned the dream that the small creek and marshland between their home and Huron Bay could someday be a safe harbor for boaters and sports fisherman. As the coho salmon fishery around Pt. Abbaye, Huron Bay and the Huron Islands continued to grow in popularity, the need for a safe and easy access to these areas became more apparent.
In 1967-68 the time seemed right. Vivan had his plans ready and purchased a crane to excavate the swamp. Through the summer, his vision took shape. The swamp became a large pond and the relocation of the creek mouth gave access to Huron Bay. What had only been a dream for nearly 30 years was finally becoming a reality. It was an exciting time for the family.
With the excavating complete, docks for nearly 70 boats, 50 campsites prepared, and gas pumps installed, the Witz Marina and Campground opened for business in 1968. In 1974 a convenience store was added to meet the growing needs of this thriving business on Huron Bay. Several thousand visitors stop in throughout the boating season.
In September of 1980, Vivan passed away. His wife Joyce, with the help of her children, operated the business until she died in January of 2002. Today, the business is operated as a corporation by the children - Jim, Jerry, Darlene, Dean, and Tommy.
From early May to mid October the Marina and Campground hum with activity. The Marina hosts a popular Fourth of July celebration and our own unique version of the Mackinaw Bridge walk on Labor Day Sunday. The spring walleye season on Huron Bay, the excitement of the summer long lake trout, coho salmon, and northern pike fisheries, and the awesome scenery of Huron Bay, Pt. Abbaye, and the Huron Islands draw thousands of boating and fishing enthusiasts to this beautiful sheltered harbor on Lake Superior.
|CATHERINE AND FRANKLIN WITZ|
|JOYCE AND VIVAN WITZ|
|JERRY, TOMMY, DEAN, DARLENE, JIM AND OUR MOTHER JOYCE|