Business Profiles

Business Profiles are selected and completed by members of the Economic Development Task Force (EDTF) for Businesses located within North Frontenac. 

If you are interested in having your business profiled please contact Councillor Stephanie Regent, EDTF Chair.

AGR Suspension Inc

AGR Suspension Inc was started in 2019 by Adam seeing that it was a business that would bring a specific power sports service to the area. Specializing in motorcycles and snowmobiles where his experience comes from 20+ years as a suspension tuner, technician, and team manager/crew chief in the respective professional competitive fields, he also provides suspension services for all powersports vehicles. As his knowledge lies in the suspension field, it is his focus, but does other mechanical services as well including snowmobile servicing & clutching, ATV/UTV's. He imports a variety of parts to his shop as the area is well serviced by courier companies. His professional racing career has taken him across the North America and Europe giving him access to quality parts for this industry. Dealing with Race Tech Inc, based out of California, Elka Suspension based out of Quebec, and other OEM & aftermarket parts providers out of Canada & United States has the business in a strategic area given all the activity in this field in North Frontenac Twp. The business is still in the growing stage so he is the only employee but may require an assistant when it becomes more established. Adam is also in the process of setting up a small store-front to showcase the equipment he has access to. In setting up his business Adam used the townships website extensively and found it a great source for the information he needed. 


Adam Robinson, owner

AGR Suspension Inc.
1843 Myers Cave Road
Cloyne ON  K0H 1K0





Art By The Baileys

If you are looking for beautiful artwork, then look no further. North Frontenac has some incredible artisans. Leane and Brian Bailey have a personal goal to share beautiful pieces of art that are meaningful to their clients, by using the mediums of coloured pencils, pastels and acrylic paints.


The Baileys started their business in 2017, and have seen growth over the years. They were looking for an area to retire and found their spot on Sunday Lake by chance. The location is beautiful and provides the Baileys with inspiration for their work. Their studio is bright with large windows overlooking Sunday Lake. A perfect spot to enhance their skills.


Brian had always been interested in becoming an artist full-time. After spending so many years working for Coca Cola, he found it was the right time to start living his dream. Leane, a retired school teacher, has many interests and started drawing with encouragement from Brian.


Their business started after creating works of art for family and friends.  Soon people in the community found out about their abilities. In 2017, they decided they would take part in the North Frontenac Back Roads Studio Tour, and have not looked back since. They have created a Facebook page ( promoting their business, and they are often involved in community functions, where they are able to showcase their art. They have created 4 murals on display in the Township of North Frontenac.


When asked what they enjoyed most about being artists in North Frontenac, they state that it is the feeling of satisfaction when seeing the joy that their artwork bring to their clients. Brian and Leane feel that at times this joy can be very emotional for them as well. They both love living in North Frontenac, as they find that people are very friendly, and have welcomed them into the community.


Thank you, Leane and Brian for choosing North Frontenac as a place to share the talent of your art through your business, Art by the Baileys.


Art By The Baileys 
1219b Sunday Lake Drive, Ompah, Ontario
(613) 479-8047

B & D Stanley Enterprises 

B & D Stanley Enterprises, led by licensed and registered contractor with TSSA, Brian Stanley, and his partner in life and business, Deborah, has been a cornerstone of the North Frontenac community for the past 34 years. Specializing in propane and oil HVAC sales and services, B & D Stanley Enterprises provides comprehensive heating, air conditioning, hydronic, and forced air solutions for homes and cottages in the area. With a focus on whole-home comfort and safety, B & D Stanley Enterprises is committed to delivering exceptional service to their customers.

Founded in North Frontenac three decades ago, B & D Stanley Enterprises has deep roots in the community. Brian and Deborah's decision to start the business here was driven by family connections and a genuine love for the area. This local presence is critical to the business, as it enables B & D Stanley Enterprises to provide essential HVAC services to the residents of North Frontenac, ensuring their comfort and well-being year-round.

While currently operating without any employees, B & D Stanley Enterprises sees a bright future in North Frontenac. With a growing demand for HVAC services and a commitment to excellence, the company is poised to continue serving the community for years to come.


As a trusted provider of HVAC solutions, B & D Stanley Enterprises remains dedicated to meeting the needs of its customers in North Frontenac and beyond. With a focus on quality, reliability, and customer satisfaction, B & D Stanley Enterprises is your go-to partner for all your heating and cooling needs. Contact them today to experience the superior service and expertise that sets them apart.


B & D Stanley Enterprises
1046 Lancaster Lane, Cloyne

(613) 336-2191

                                                                                                                                        B & D Stanley Enterprises


Back Forty Cheese

Jeff and Jenna Fenwick have made a huge investment in the storage barn they found on their farm property, turning it into a retail space, a cheese production facility, and a second floor artisan studio.


There are now 8 varieties available through the online store.  The most recent is ‘Verona Pecarino’, which Jeff first started experimenting with 3 years ago.  Jenna wanted a hard cheese with that particular flavour. COVID has of course affected sales, especially in the Toronto restaurant market. The CN Tower restaurant, one of the busiest in Canada, was a customer until March this year.  I asked how an obscure artisan scores a customer like that, and was told about how chefs get to know suppliers.  This chef came from Ottawa.


For a man who clearly loves the craft of making and caring for his hundreds of rounds of cheese, Jeff is now balancing between trying to support six small sheep farmers and selling enough of his 8 varieties online, on site, or by delivering. Luckily sheep’s milk can be frozen raw- it is unique in being naturally homogenized- so there’s an inventory of milk in several locations. One ambition of this business, to be a destination for urban and local visitors.  To that end, there are plans for winter use of trails on the property for snowshoeing, skiing and fat bikes. This is a beautiful site on the river’s edge.

Back 40 Artisan Cheese Jeff and Jenna Fenwick - Back Forty Cheese
1406 Gulley Road
Mississippi Station, ON K0H 2C0




Bishop Lake Outdoor Centre

Bishop Lake Outdoor Centre Inc. provides a getaway for people seeking a break from the rigours of daily life, with a campground of 75 seasonal sites and a 4 unit motel open year-round.

There is also a store selling a wide variety of fishing and hunting gear, apparel, footwear, MNRF licensing and a laundromat open to the public.  It also has propane tank refilling and re-valving certification.

This family-owned-and–operated business started in 1987 with the opening of 40 campground sites.  In 1990 propane services were added, and then in 1994 the campground grew to 75 sites.

Built on the Bishop family farm established in 1901, it continued to grow with the addition of the store in 1998, which opened in its current location in 1999.  In 2004 there was an opportunity to acquire a motel unit from another local business, thus expanding into year-round accommodation.

BLOC’s longevity is attributed to local support throughout the years with the welcome influx of seasonal patrons. Their location on Hwy 41 just south of Road 506 makes it an easily accessed destination. There are 5 employees who help in the daily operation of the grounds and the operation of the motel.  The future of this business in North Frontenac Township is strong, as there is a waiting list for campsites, and the store and motel experience business year-round.

An interesting side note is that in the late ‘90s BLOC had a plan for senior’s housing on their site, but the Council of the time was not interested in pursuing the idea.

Bishop Lake Outdoors Bishop Lake BLOC motel
13621 Hwy 41
Cloyne, ON K0H 1K0


By The Bay Cottages

By the Bay is a Cottage and RV resort purchased in 2014 by Tim and Kelly. Being owners of a resort in a different area of Ontario they decided to relocate and looking for another resort found Green Bay Resort for sale. Also having another commercial enterprise, it was relocated to the area with a ten year plan in place which has since been closed with the focus now on the resort. Like the other seasonal resorts in the area their clientele is mostly from Ottawa, Toronto and beyond, plus the U.S., making the resort full for the season with the odd vacancy due to a last-minute cancellation. Tim and Kelly do not have any additional staff working at the resort and if help is needed they have family, friends and resort patrons who volunteer their time. As for future plans to expand their business there aren’t any at this time but feel there is a need for more business such as theirs if more property were to become available in the township.


By the Bay Cottagesby the bay cottages
2819 Road 506 Cloyne, ON K0H 1K0


Canadian Handywoman

Canadian Handywoman provides a task solution service for homeowners, businesses, and cottage owners in the area getting jobs done that you may not have the time, tools or knowledge to do on your own. Some of these services are painting, carpentry, furniture assembly, short term rental turnovers, property security checks and yard maintenance. She also builds custom outdoor furniture such as picnic tables, planters and benches. 


Tammy started the business here in January 2020 seeing a need for a business like this in the area. She gained a lot of her experience and knowledge while working for other businesses when she first moved to the area. She provides her services in North & Central Frontenac and Addington Highlands, 50% in North Frontenac and the other 50% is divided between the other two but not necessarily equal. Being the only employee at this time Tammy does have other family members to call upon if needed but carries out the majority of the work on her own. Her original business plan has had to make some adjustments due to the current situation affecting all businesses worldwide. She figured that there would be enough work coming from local year round residents and businesses but under the past and current restrictions with personal contact made a decision to expand her service portfolio and now finds herself busy, advising prospective customers that there is at least a two week waiting period for new jobs. In the beginning she approached the township looking for and received information and assistance.  Several staff members provided an optimistic outlook and some prospective clients.


Tammy's professionalism and positive attitude will keep this business venture moving forward and continually growing.

Canadian HandywomanTammy Watson

Clancy Electric

Clancy Electric was established in 2017 and moved to North Frontenac Twp in 2018. It took 9000hrs of training and schooling which allowed Keith to write and obtain his electrical license, then worked for another 3 years for a licensed electrical contractor to be eligible to write his master’s license. After a total of 8 years training gave him the credentials to operate an electrical contractor business. His business is focused on supporting the need in North Frontenac Twp where he found it and does not venture outside the area unless the circumstances warrant it. With his two employees, another electrician and an apprentice, the area is keeping them busy. Keith also has a third employee, an in-house administrative assistant. His business is critical to the area being there is a lack of specific trades professionals in the area. He also sees prospects for more specific trades people being required if the area’s population continues to grow as it has been.

Continued success to Keith and his business keeping us all connected to the grid.


Clancy ElectricClancy Electric
1948 Harlowe Road  Arden, ON  K0H 1B0

Fernleigh Lodge

This is a business report based very much on the tragedy of our current times- the Covid-19 pandemic. Not necessarily a ‘things-are-just-fine’ story. Kevin and Melissa Phillips had achieved revenues at the lodge of just over a million dollars for the first time in 2019, mostly from American visitors. At 67, Kevin was hoping to retire soon, and to find a buyer to continue on with his vision. Where once there were 22 resorts on Kashwakamak Lake, Fernleigh Lodge is the single remaining operating establishment. Hundreds of thousands of dollars have been spent winterizing the cottages, a process more than half completed by now. Kevin has been visiting Fernleigh Lodge since 1960- he has owned it for the last 40 years, 20 years of that time with Melissa. It has become a feature of the township.

When the pandemic was declared in March 2020, it became impossible for Americans to cross the border. Suddenly only Canadian guests could be accommodated. Revenue plunged by 70%. In 2020. Some Federal wage programs were available, but where was the balance of those wages to come from? Taxes, and hydro, mortgage, and insurance- all these costs continue unabated. It has been a juggling act keeping lenders from turning into sharks. Kevin is sitting on an half-million dollar inventory of renovation materials waiting for money to pay the contractors.
I will relate a story that bears further investigation. Water level control on the lake is handled by Mississippi Valley Conservation Authority, using a series of control dams. I am a Board member of the MVCA. Kevin states that he has spent $80,000 over the past four years repairing docks from ice damage caused by poor water level management. And that this became a problem only about 15 years ago. Is this because of climate change issues, or is it some management problem at the CA?

Other stories, possibly one-sided, relate to the availability of grant money. Federal wage relief, business grants, even the township’s own Community Improvement Plan- all have detailed forms, delays, conditions for denial. When cash is needed in a business, it is usually an urgent issue. Possibly if the township had a tax deferral program, where property tax could remain unpaid and accumulated in a loan account, to be paid at the time of a sale, would be helpful for this business and others with high assets. I know that such a program is available in other municipalities.
It’s important that Kevin and his family get through this financially tremendously stressful time with an intact business. That will require guests, and that will begin to happen as this pandemic eases. Visiting Fernleigh Lodge has reminded me of how different the whole pandemic experience has been for Canadians in different circumstances.

Fernleigh LodgeFernleigh Lodge
1796b South Road
Cloyne ON  K0H 1K0


Frontenac Shores

Frontenac Shores is a Fractional Ownership vacation resort, developed by Pat and Dave Storms 10 years after the purchase of the aging seasonal tourist establishment of Twin Pine Resort on Mississagagon Lake.

A new industry concept for the area that opened March of 2008, Frontenac Shores has consistently brought over 90% year round occupancy, comprising of ownership members, renters, and world-wide exchangers, and grew to 8 luxurious log waterfront homes by 2010 providing 400 weeks of year-round vacation opportunities. There are hopes to expand to 11 within the next few years.

Primarily, the owners of 5-week vacation packages come from a 3-hour driving radius encompassing Toronto, Ottawa and the 401 corridor, but some owners are from longer distances and even other countries. Aside from consistent owner occupancy, managed rental and world-wide exchange programs account for approx. 25% (100 weeks per year) of usage by travelers from around the world and surrounding major cities.

The development currently has 8 employees plus additional contractors for things like plumbing, electrical, propane, building maintenance, snow removal and landscaping.

Expansion of Fractional vacation home ownership could serve this area well as it brings “heads in beds” all year, world-wide tourism exposure and year-round employment.


Frontenac Shores frontenac shores
1016 Twin Pine Lane
Cloyne, ON, K0H 1K0


Gemmill Sand and Gravel Ltd

When I moved to Ompah in 1974 I learned that Dale Gemmill was a respected dairy farmer in Snow Road, with deep family roots and with two sons and a daughter.  I remember Dale telling me in about 1986 that he was selling his milk quota and starting in the gravel business so that his two sons Roger and Scott would have viable work. That one backhoe and one dump truck has grown into a corporation headed by Scott that now employs 24 people during the busy summer season.  The employees are all residents of Central and North Frontenac.


Probably what is most surprising about Gemmill Sand and Gravel is how quickly it has grown since that first backhoe the company does site preparation for individual cottages, and for whole subdivisions.  They are licensed to use explosives. They do a range of road projects including everything but paving and large bridges.  The bridge limitation may change in the future. In order to grow this quickly a company must have a good reputation and bid competitively on jobs over a wide geographical area, in this case generally against larger companies. Competition is strong, from Crain’s, Tackaberry, Cavanagh, Tomlinson, Corcoran. As we’ve heard from others, the continued lack of cellphone service around Snow Road is a challenge for availability to customers.


Slightly over half of their business comes from municipalities; North Frontenac got a favourable comment for being a prompt bill payer.  One thing I’ve learned from other people who operate trucks and equipment is that you won’t survive if you can’t figure out a fast, reliable and reasonably priced way to maintain all that equipment; because it takes a beating. Scott must have figured that out because he’s bidding on things like a complete subdivision in Kemptville. When projects like that and other jobs stop with the onset of winter, the company still manages to employ 10 people. They work at two locations getting machines ready for the next spring.


This is a family business- Scott’s son may be the third generation to own it in the future.  There’s more sand and gravel on the company property than anyone realized, part of the Snow Road esker. Gemmill’s recently purchased a rock quarry near Sharbot Lake where hard black granite will be crushed. This is not a business that is standing still.


Gemmill Sand and Gravel Ltd. Gemmill Sand and Gravel Ltd
4210 Elphin-Maberly Road
Snow Road, ON, K0H 2R0

Homestead Studio Glass

Homestead Studio Glass, led by artisan Nancy Traviss, specializes in creating stunning fused and lampwork glass creations. With a passion for glasswork spanning 15 years, Nancy has honed her craft to produce unique, intricate pieces that captivate and inspire. Originally from Enniskillen, Ontario, she started her glasswork journey on land that was part of her grandparents' homestead. After retiring, Nancy and her husband moved to Ardoch in 2021, where she continues her artistic pursuits.

Nancy participates as a vendor in local events and the North Frontenac Back Roads Studio Tour, showcasing her creations to art enthusiasts and collectors. While her studio is not open to the public regularly, appointments can be made to view her work, and her creations are also featured on her Facebook page (

This blend of in-person and online presence allows her to connect with a wider audience while maintaining the intimate, personal touch that characterizes her work.

Choosing North Frontenac for its rural charm and burgeoning artist community, Nancy finds inspiration in the natural beauty of the area. Her creations reflect this influence, often drawing from the serene landscapes that surround her. Although Homestead Studio Glass remains a small, personal endeavour without plans for expansion, Nancy's dedication to her craft and the support from her customers and the local community continue to drive her passion. She enjoys the freedom to work at her own pace, always learning and evolving as an artist.
Grateful for the support from her customers and the local community, Nancy’s work is a unique blend of tradition, innovation, and heartfelt creativity. Homestead Studio Glass stands as a beautiful addition to North Frontenac’s artistic landscape, offering pieces that are as unique and inspiring as the environment in which they are created.

Hunter's Creek Golf Club

In 2019 Cynthia and Patrick purchased the golf course which was established back in the 1960's with a view to the future and upgrades which are still in progress. The business is here for the enjoyment of not just the locals but also seasonal and the tourism aspect of the area. The location of the golf course is sort of "off the beaten track" as the saying goes because if there was no signage out front you wouldn't know it existed. The private and secluded nature of area set well back in from the busy highway makes it an ideal place to enjoy all of its amenities, Golf, Horseshoes, Disc Golf, food and drinks. They have already upgraded the Disc Golf to a new 3 course layout. They can accommodate small parties with their banquet hall and have regular special events happening throughout the year. In the off season they are a meeting place for the snowmobile enthusiasts providing meals and a place to warm up. Their meals are also available on a take-out service to anyone. In the day-to-day running of business they employ five people over the season.
Cynthia and Patrick came to the area to find a business and in return gained a community.
Even if you may not be the sporting type I suggest you stop in at Hunters Creek to say hello, you may just find something you weren’t expecting.


Hunter's Creek Golf Course
1198 Hwy 506
Cloyne, ON, K0H 1K0

KXO Timberframe

The beautiful forests of North Frontenac and our history of logging in the area makes for a perfect location for a relatively new company. KXO Timber Frame has been in service full time for three years, yet has many years of experience. KXO Timber Frame does custom work, and will help design and build according to your wishes. Whatever project that involves large timber, such as custom homes, furniture or specialized decks, KXO Timber Frame has the expertise to get the job done.

Danielle and her husband, Istvan, have created a true partnership. Danielle does the design work and collaborates with both the customers and engineers for projects. Istvan is in charge milling the timber required for the projects and installation. KXO is truly a family business with Danielle’s brother and parents all contributing, and in the summer months, when home from school their eldest son is hard at work in the yard.

The timber used for the projects is locally sourced pine. Raw logs are converted to timber frames in their yard. All the timber is cut to exact measurements, and most of the work is done manually with tight tolerances. Once all the timber has been cut and squared to size, one coat of stain is applied, and then it is ready for shipment and installation. The timber frame is unique as it is the structural aspect of the project allowing the owner to finish their home as they see fit.

Danielle and Istvan were looking for a piece of property that would allow them to create KXO Timber Frame and have a great location to raise a family. North Frontenac has provided this opportunity for them, and it has been an inspiration to their work. If you are looking for a custom house or furniture, then look no further and contact KXO Timber Frame. The craftsmanship is second to none.


KXO Timberframe
1232 Salmonberry Ln
Cloyne, ON, K0H 1K0
613-484-2878 Timberframe Danielle and Istvan

Land O'Lakes Rescue Petting Farm

Barry and Donna Smith were the new owners of a lodge on Skootamatta Lake in the ‘90s when they adopted 3 young daughters who were sisters. Barry had been forced by diabetes to retire from his commercial pilot’s career flying Airbuses around the world. When the Children’s Aid Society told them that the lodge building was too small to house three daughters, they bought the large house on Road 506 just east of the Highway 41 junction. In the early 2000s they discovered that their daughters benefited from caring for animals, especially ones that had been neglected or mistreated. This led to the purchase of the adjacent property, clearing of the front 200 feet or so, and putting in corrals and a small barn at the rear.


As their family grew up, the collection of rescued animals grew larger.  Feeding, housing and medical care is a constant need;  the property was opened to the public as a petting zoo with an entry fee and a snack bar at the gate.  Eventually the three sisters left for careers of their own.  Barry and Donna next adopted two young brothers who have also left by now for independent lives elsewhere in Eastern Ontario.


A turning point came in 2015, on a frigid morning in February, when Barry was attacked by the resident bull as he led it out of the barn.  He was left on the ground with many broken bones and internal bleeding, discovered by a neighbour who called the OPP and ambulance.  Barry was able to roll under a parked truck while his rescuers attempted to control and calm the bull. Needless to say, nothing has been the same since.  Nowadays Barry is helped by a cane and an electric scooter. The petting farm is open to the public in the warmer months still, not as well kept as in the past, but still full of much loved horses, ducks, goats, a llama and a very large Guernsey cow who likes to kiss people. Every animal has a rescue story and a name. I deliver wood shavings for bedding to the farm from my business and am regularly struck by the continuing positive attitudes of both Barry and Donna.  Barry claims that were it not for his daily chores of feeding and cleaning out stalls, he’d probably be dead by now.


One story illustrates the financial burden of keeping these animals.  A small horse was in distress with a digestive emergency, no veterinarian was available, so Barry called the University of Guelph, drove the animal there, and had it examined and operated on by a team of veterinary professors and students.  As he told me, “ $7000 for a $40 horse”. But I guess he loves the horse.


Land O'Lakes Rescue Petting FarmBarry Smith
1200 Road 506
Cloyne ON  K0H 1K0


Lonnie Watkins Tree Service

At the age of 11, Lonnie received his first chainsaw and hung up his bow saw permanently. He found an easier way to do what he loves and has never looked back. The forestry industry is in Lonnie’s blood, both his father and grandfather worked in the trade as well.

Lonnie was incorporated in 1998 thanks to the good advice of Lonnie’s bookkeeper Andy. The ice storm wrecked havoc on many, but it also introduced the corporation 1259797 Ontario Ltd (Lonnie Watkins Tree Service) into business. That year the tree service was operating with a wood chipper and a staff of 11 cleaning up roads in the Township after the storm damage.

Lonnie met Rhonda in 2000 at a First Air Golf Tournament and she has added her expertise in Marketing, bookkeeping, customer service and generally anything else Lonnie needs. Throughout the years many wonderful staff worked for Lonnie, including two high school co-op students that are now in the forestry trade as adults. Thank you to all of them that helped to make Lonnie Watkins Tree Service what it is today!

Lonnie, Rhonda and their children Charlie and Amy make it a family business now. With 3 tractors, a mini-ex, dump truck, wood-splitter, wood processor, sawmill and countless chainsaws. This family provides tree service, firewood and landscaping needs throughout North Frontenac and Addington Highlands with the odd service call outside their operating area.

Lonnie’s experience and dedication to superior customer service is well known by many people in the Community! North Frontenac is home to Lonnie Watkins Tree Service and Lonnie feels it is a great place to operate a business.

Congratulations on Celebrating your Silver Anniversary Lonnie, Rhonda, Charlie and Amy and thank you for providing a well needed service to our Township!


Lonnie Watkins Tree ServiceLonnie Watkins and Family
1854 Smith Rd.
Ardoch ON  K0H 1K0


Lookout Home Hardware

The hardware store in Plevna has a history going back to the 70s when it was located on top of the hill near the United Church-  originally a schoolhouse I’m told. Hence the name Lookout. This is a report about a current business and its current owner, but it’s also about a venerable institution which now has its third owner. Stan Mika from Sharbot Lake owned it first, then Rick Kellar bought it and moved the store to the present farm property at Mountain Road owned by the James family, in 1986.  Rick and Gina Kellar urned the site into the modern retail and building supply facility that’s there now, finishing his ownership as a Home Hardware. After 30 years of building the business into a thriving supplier to locals and the summer surge of cottagers, Rick and Gina were able to interest Richard Ellard in purchasing in 2014.  Richard owns the large and successful Home Hardware Building Centre in Perth, which was previously owned by his father Bob Ellard.  Earlier the Perth facility was in the current Giant Tiger location on Highway 7.  Earlier still, it was ‘James Brothers Home Hardware’ at the corner of Gore and Foster in Perth.  At the time Bob Ellard moved into the current Perth location it was the largest in Canada and had just received a ‘best in Canada’ award from the St. Jacob’s-based parent company.

The point of all this, at least for me, is that these threads of history come together in such a fascinating way, and that knowing a bit of the history makes the Plevna store a more interesting place to visit.  I talked with Richard at one of his weekly visits to Plevna. He feels that he has purchased a viable business with a dedicated and caring staff, and with a loyal clientele.  A very different clientele from the one he knows in Perth. Locally there’s a lot more do-it-yourself construction than in a slightly more urban market. He feels that his job is to preserve, or nurture, what’s here now. He also tells me that owning two or more locations isn’t unusual among Home Hardware stores.  Some are owned outright, like Plevna; some are leased from the parent company, like Perth.

I was curious to know if the summer versus winter volume of business in Plevna came as a surprise to Richard.  I’ve experienced it when visiting the store in February to find no other customers and three staff to help me. He had to admit that he was expecting it, but not the degree of the summer surge relative to the winter quiet. Perth’s market is very different with its steady year-round traffic. Another surprise for Richard is the actual number of waterfront seasonal properties that are ‘hidden’ on all our local lakes. These are more visible in the Perth area.  Our forest cover and road network don’t make their numbers visible to someone driving through,

Covid response has been very different for a building supply dealer, between here and Perth.
North Frontenac was inundated by refugees from the cities in early 2000 and they worked on their properties.  No such surge for the Perth store.  This year it’s just the opposite, with this area relatively quiet compared to a building boom around Perth.

I finally have to mention that Richard has been delighted and surprised by his dealings with township staff.  Also, he’s constantly amazed that most customers and staff in Plevna seem to call each other by first names. Welcome to rural North Frontenac Richard.

Lookout Home HardwareLookout Home Hardware
7617 Road 509
Plevna ON  K0H 2M0


Lothlorien Woodworking Ltd

The manufacturing of custom designed wooden doors and windows, exclusively, Lothlorien Woodworking has made a name for itself since 1978 when established by John here in North Frontenac Twp. He came here in 1972 with some friends from Toronto, never being in the area before, found this farm property was for sale and purchased it.

John has provided units to a couple dozen local customers but most of his orders are from outside of the area such as Perth, Ottawa, Kingston and Toronto as the cost of these custom designed units is considerably higher compared to the more cost-effective production style windows. Some want their units to replace the original ones in their home and others are to retain the heritage of the home. Over the years, though, 20% of Johns orders have been from the U.S. with his latest order, beginning in April, for 54 wooden windows with hand-blown glass panes and counter balanced weights with pullies in the frame for the ease of opening and closing the windows. These units are going to a new home build in Long Island, NY. John also delivers all his orders due to the cost and fragile nature of the product. John has one regular employee then hires additional staff when an order warrants it such as the one starting in April. With a custom designed product in wood, exclusively, and in business for 40+ years future prospects for this type of business are slim due to the popularity of vinyl and composite products in the marketplace today.

"Lothlorien" has unique a meaning that is very appropriate for our township, Google it!  

Lothlorien Woodworking Ltd. Lothlorien Woodworking Ltd
1061 Lothlorien Road
Ompah, ON, K0H 2J0




Marble Lake Lodge

Marble Lake Lodge is a 3-business enterprise: Cabins, Campgrounds, and the Hungry Moose Restaurant, providing accommodations and meals to visitors and locals alike. Celebrating their 10th season in business Connie Hammer, proprietor, and her staff have made this business thrive as it has in over 100 years that it has been in existence. The majority of its patrons are from outside the area, but locals do on occasion have relatives/ friends staying there when they do not have enough room to accommodate everyone for a gathering. After realizing the restaurant was becoming lost in the "lodges" shadow it was given its own identity and has substantial room for inside dinning with an outside patio too. Having a take-out service along with catering services helps with their seasonal operation. They are in the process of renovating their cabins to provide a longer season for visitors with the prospects of having winter bookings down the road.
Marble Lake Lodge employs 10 - 15 local people throughout the season. They make a point of hiring young people giving them a chance to learn what is involved with having a job and some of their past employees have gone on to work in professional careers. Connie has a clear focus on what she wants for the future of the business and feels it's attainable and sees prospects for others entering this business.


Marble Lake Lodge 
Marble Lake Lodge
1005 Marble Lake Road
Cloyne ON  K0H 1K0


Mariclaro Designs

I learned a new word when I visited Sven Schlegel at Mariclaro Designs in Snow Road- ‘upcycled’. It appears to be the over-riding philosophy behind everything that happens in this small but intense cottage manufacturing business. It is the use of industrial waste materials to make beautiful, value-added new items. And then to sell them to the world.

A lot is happening at this business- in the basement, in the renovated garage, in the homes of several employees.  Sven bought the property adjacent to the Mississippi bridge on Road 509 in 2012, coming here from Toronto. He has a professional background in planning and a lot of experience tinkering with industrial castoff materials. When he was employed in Mexico in the early 2000’s he started working as a sideline with old leather upholstery pieces. “I don’t know how to sew, but I can make patterns” he told me.  Apparently he still really enjoys crawling through car scrapyards looking for old Mercedes, Porsche, BMW and Audi classics. He has become a master at making bags of various designs from the leather upholstery of these cars.  Eight years ago he was selling items at stores in Canada and the U. S. Now, everything is sold from the website, and it is all shipped around the world from the Sharbot Lake Post Office.  Over 3000 items each year.

The Mariclaro website shows a number of bag designs, including purses, backpacks, computer bags and small duffel bags. The source material is classic autos, airline seats, and remnant leather materials from large manufacturing processes.  If you buy a bag made from the seats of a rare Porsche 933, the price of the item will reflect this. A leather label will tell you the model, the year and the VIN of the car.

The story of how someone got to North Frontenac, when they are a ‘newcomer’, is always interesting to me. Usually there is some kind of a family connection.  In Sven’s case, it was Sharbot Lake High School teacher Jeff Murray, a well known fabric artist, who introduced him to the area. This rural property beside a magnificent river was more attractive than Toronto to an imaginative and energetic entrepreneur. The business now employs five women on a full-time basis and has put Snow Road on the map for many discerning buyers.


Mariclaro Designs Mariclaro Designs
14259 Road 509
Snow Road Station, ON  K0H 2R0










Mariclaro Designs



Mississippi Maples

In Snow Road there is a maple sugar house beside the Elphin highway that has been in place since the 1930s, quiet in recent years since owner Dale Gemmill passed away.  It is now active again and being operated by Scott Gemmill’s old friend Steve Skinner and Andrea Zadow who lease the property stretching north to other maple bushes belonging to the Miller and Wheeler families.  Steve is originally from Ottawa but now lives near Mississippi.

I first met Steve when he managed CDL in Lanark, and more recently at CDL’s new location at the previous A & B Ford site in Perth.  As any maple producer in the region knows, CDL is a Quebec City based manufacturer of equipment.  It’s fair to say that maple syrup is a year-round passion of Steve’s. I learned that it takes 5,000 to 10,000 taps to have an operation large enough to support a family.  The old operation in Snow Road has that capacity in the bush, but is smaller at this point. Steve has already invested in new equipment, and would benefit from at least one employee during the active March/April period. He has plans to expand on the Gemmill property and to perhaps lease a neighbouring maple bush property. I learned that syrup tasting is as subtle as wine tasting- and that the trees growing on our rocky soil produce an especially fine and unique, ‘buttery’ taste.  I’m going to take some of my own rich dark syrup in to Steve for a tasting judgement.

As an equipment supplier to local producers, Steve has decided to not compete locally with maple syrup sales.  He sells almost all his product on weekends at the Carp market. He has long experience in Carp, having previously leased a property on March Road.

The photo with this report shows a large pile of logs near the sugar house. My thought was that this is fuel for next year’s evaporating, but no… this is cleanup from a micro-burst that went through in summer 2020. Like many others, Steve uses oil for heat, but is planning on a switch to propane which is more efficient and environmentally cleaner.


Mississippi MaplesSteve Skinner
1462 Shiner Road 
Mississippi Station, Ontario K0H 2C0




North of 7 Market and Restaurant

Fuel Depot (gas, diesel and propane), North of 7 Family Restaurant, liquor and beer empty container return. He has since changed it to the North of 7 Market and Restaurant.

The Grocery Store has now become independent from the large franchise it was affiliated with. This gives Bill the opportunity to use different suppliers for produce, meat and groceries. Bill now also provides a grocery order service and any items that are not in stock or a regularly stocked will be available by the end of the week, as long as the order is placed by Monday. This is done as these suppliers each deliver their products on a different day of the week.  With current Covid-19 restrictions in place Bill can also pick items up as he makes regular trips to other suppliers.

The Restaurant still has a take-out service Fridays and Saturdays at this time due to the present lockdown that is in place and will be re-evaluated once the lockdown is lifted. This Business is focused entirely on residents as it is the only one of its kind in the township. Bill employs up to 10 people depending on the time of year.

The future prospects of this Business depends on the local response to the services offered.  As a result of dealing with the Covid-19 crisis the past nine months things have been rough.

Bill is looking forward to 2021.  It will still be challenging even with the "light at the end of the tunnel" getting closer with the vaccines being administered.

We are very grateful for the services provided to our residents and visitors.  Thank you Bill and employees.


North Of 7 Restaurant and Market Bill James
7325 Road 506
Plevna ON  K0H 2M0


Pleasantview Lodge

My last visit to Pleasantview was in 2012 when Bud Clayton brought Council together there with township managers to talk about new strategic directions.  Dan and Helen Branston were owners and the view up Brule Lake was fantastic.  On my visit in early March the view is still impressive but the ownership has changed to Colin and Julia Drake.  It would be hard to find a couple who are more positive about their new lodge and the surrounding community. They bought in early 2019, had one ‘normal’ summer season, and then Covid happened at the end of that first winter. Nevertheless, a group of regular visitors has kept returning, and has been teaching them about their lodge and its history, about Brule Lake and about their neighbours.


Pleasantview, like many lodges in North Frontenac, has housekeeping cabins with kitchen and bathroom, plus a central building where visitors can play pool or ping pong, read in front of a fire, or even learn to play piano. The owners live on-site, on the floor above the main building’s common area. Colin and Julia are both musically talented-  Colin is an experienced session guitarist and Julia has a background in musical theatre and photography.  The PA system in the music corner will probably see use for social gatherings when this pandemic has finally run its course.


The story of how Julia’s drive to find a rural lifestyle, and for both of them to leave teaching careers in the Kitchener area, is a fascinating one. After a year or more of searching from coastal B.C. to Manitoulin Island, a chance encounter brought them here, an area they’d never considered. The time searching was preparation for beginning to understand the huge maintenance challenge that comes with running a lodge. I heard a story of a freak windstorm a few months ago that dropped large trees destroying three vehicles. The work on the property continues as they prepare to open in April, and Colin continues teaching part-time at Clarendon Central Public School. This is a good time to offer lakefront accommodation in a beautiful setting, as the pandemic has taught us.  I suspect this will be a busy summer for Colin and Julia.

Pleasantview Lodge Pleasantview Lodge
1614c Brule Lake Road 
Plevna ON  K0H 2M0

 Pleasantview Lodge

Red Dragon Studio
Cathy has been painting 30 yrs with her chosen medium of watercolours; among her other endeavours she designs mosaic stain glass, jewellery, fabric art and more. Growing up around artistic people she began with pencil sketching then tried oil painting and found she preferred watercolours after taking night courses as she was in the medical profession for 25 yrs as a Registered Nurse during the day.

Cathy is mostly self-taught and has also attended the Ottawa School of Art to obtain a better understanding of the craft. She also teaches, mostly adults, and has some students returning regularly over the past 20 yrs. The majority of her work is purchased by tourists with some going to Perth and Kingston and also internationally. Even though Cathy and her husband are seasonal residents in North Frontenac, this is where her studio and gift shop are located because of the tourism aspect. This type of business can be profitable if you have a location that is visible and not reliant on social media platforms to bring in clients. Cathy feels that North Frontenac Township’s positive support of the annual Backroads Studio Tour has had a positive impact on the local arts scene.

If you get a chance to visit, by appointment or by chance, do so you will not regret it.

Red Dragon Gallery & Gift Shop red dragon studio
1091 Ridge Lane
Ardoch, Ontario K0H 1C0
Riverhill Farm and Fine Foods

This business, which straddles the boundary between Wards 2 and 3 in our township, is probably best known for its amazing annual Christmas lights show.  Over 100,000 lights that blink, sing Elvis songs, light up large maples, and stretch across an expanse of rolling lawns. But the real business side of Riverhill Farm is maple syrup production, run by Stephanie Lemke.  She has 8000 taps and is still expanding on the 1400 acre property.  Incidentally, this property is my immediate neighbour to the west, and my first introduction to it was through its owners Gerry and Sandra Ducharme in 1972.  Gerry has since passed away, and his son Greg Ducharme is now the owner.  For a number of years Greg and partner Rhonda Lemke operated a food concession on the carnival circuit around Ontario, but this was a difficult life that kept them away from home for months.


I learned, speaking with Stephanie and her mother Rhonda, that ‘Riverhill Farm’ was a name that Gerry called his place back in the ‘70’s, but it is only in the last 15 years that I’ve been aware of it as a business enterprise.  The Christmas light show does not charge admission but does have donation boxes and a small food concession.  I can imagine that revenues might pay for the electricity, but the labour to install and maintain, the capital cost of those lights…..? This is essentially a gift to the community, and it draws visitors from Ottawa and Toronto.  This year with COVID, there is a shift to a drive-through format.


Maple syrup is another story, and a challenging one for its own reasons.  Getting thousands of liters of syrup to market is not easy, in the past they’ve trucked it to a wholesaler in Goderich. But with COVID this year, that buyer’s shipments to China were in danger.  Another option is CDL in Perth, but prices are lower and there’s more handling of the 32 gallon stainless steel drums, which can lead to damage.  Other large syrup producers market directly to grocery and specialty stores, but this is not something Stephanie has chosen to do. Another recent challenge for all producers is a new grading system that introduces flavour ‘colours’ to the traditional light, medium and dark grades. Stephanie likely has the largest maple syrup operation in North Frontenac, and has colleagues in nearby townships with similar or larger operations, Conboy, Wheeler, Temple. It appears the world will always want more of this gift of spring.


Riverhill Farm & Fine Food Ltd. Riverhill Farm and Fine Food Ltd.
1311 Struthadam Rd. 
Ompah, Ontario K0H 2J0


 Ross Ranch and Contracting

When upgrading a home or dwelling in North Frontenac, a contractor with heavy equipment, a strong work ethic, and integrity is crucial for any home or business owner. Ross Ranch & Contracting provides many services
including land clearing, site preparation, trenching, retaining walls, driveways, as well as other landscape services. Owner, Nick Ross is more than able to meet the needs of his customers. Nick has operated Ross Ranch & Contracting since 2021 with full time staff, hiring extra help during the busier months. The majority of Nick’s work is within North Frontenac where he has lived his entire life, and recently built his own home. Nick is very community minded, and demonstrates this by volunteering on the local fire department.

For many years, Nick has gathered expertise through various work experiences. Even during his high school years, he opened his own business selling firewood. Nick continues to have an entrepreneurial mind set, and has obtained his
septic systems license, which allows for both design and installation. This helps Ross Ranch & Contracting fulfill the needs of customers. 

If you are planning a project or wanting your septic system upgraded, you can contact Nick by email: Additionally, you can follow Ross Ranch & Contracting on Facebook to view recent projects with before and after pictures.


Ross Ranch and Contracting

Plevna, Ont. K0H 2M0

Shamrock Cafe

While driving the Scenic Route in North Frontenac you will come to the small hamlet of Plevna and once there you will be intrigued to visit the Shamrock Cafe (previously the Shamrock Bakery). The cafe is not your typical food stop. Yes, you will be able to indulge in savoury and sweet homemade treats, pick up a breakfast wrap, or enjoy a sandwich for lunch on the outdoor patio. However, what makes the Shamrock Cafe special is the owner, Nuala Gartlan.

Having had a personal connection in the area, Nuala was looking for a new adventure and decided a cafe would be just the right thing. Nuala has been operating the cafe for the past seven years.

The cafe has all the special ingredients for a successful business. You are welcomed by Nuala as you walk in; you are invited to sit down and enjoy a conversation with the other customers. Nuala has created a sense of community at the cafe, making it a meeting place for permanent and seasonal residents, as well as passing tourists. The cafe is handsomely decorated and includes works from local artisans. There is plenty of room to make yourself comfortable both inside or out.

On Friday nights, the Shamrock Cafe provides pre-ordered, hearty fixed menu dinners for pick-up. You can check the Shamrock Cafe’s Facebook page for upcoming dinners.

When speaking about community, Nuala would like to see more food service venues in North Frontenac. This will not only help create jobs, but entice tourists to visit our beautiful area. She believes that there is ample opportunity for anyone to create a thriving business here in North Frontenac.

So if you are a resident of North Frontenac or just driving through, stop by the Shamrock Cafe and enjoy a treat and a conversation. You will not be disappointed. The coffee is always on, as long as the sign says Open, Thursday to Sunday, May to October.


Shamrock CafeShamrock Cafe

7414 Road 506
Plevna, Ont. K0H 2M0

Sherwood Park Campground

On the flat land at the western edge of North Frontenac Township there are a number of small lakes and creeks forming the source of the Salmon River. Story Lake, at Road 506, is one of the largest and is the western boundary of Dan Vaillancourt’s campground. He has 98 sites on his 65 acre property, all mixed in with an open stand of mature white pines and surrounded by privately owned forest.


Dan bought the property in 2013 after his ‘second retirement’ from the military as an electronics technician. It was a campground on its fourth owner after establishment in about 1965. He has invested much time and money into improvements, which shows to the casual visitor who sees a well kept property with a cheerful row of flagpoles across the highway frontage.

Covid has had a profound impact on this and many other tourist operations. When the opening of the 2020 season brought restrictions against overnight visitors, Dan switched to 100% full-season rentals. Previous to that there were about 20 camping sites for tents and trailers coming for short stays. After bringing in his favourite contractor for site work there are now 98 privately owned trailers sitting on the 98 sites year round. They pay a refundable winter storage fee for 6 months, then a monthly site rental starting May 1. They get metered power, all installed underground, water, and a sewage removal service from their small holding tanks. They get more security than most cottage owners have.

Apparently this seasonal campground model is more common now than before the Covid-19 pandemic. The number of available short-term camping sites in the township has shrunk since the pandemic began. For the campground owner, it allows operation with a much smaller support staff than short term camping requires. Dan gets to know his guests; he rarely has to refuse a person renting the following year for poor behaviour. Short term rentals would bring higher revenues but the operating costs are higher.

One change Dan has seen in the last few years is increasing trades restrictions- he can no longer help a trailer owner with a small electrical or propane problem. Other than giving a bit of advice. There are no longer trailer maintenance technicians who travel, so getting help can become very expensive for a minor issue.


Sherwood Park CampgroundDan in front of Sherwood Park
1141 Road 506
Cloyne, Ont. K0H 1K0


The Red Barn Zone

In 2021 Mike and Nawar saw the need for a restaurant and as there was no space to have another permanent structure, they bought a truck and turned it into a food service vehicle, providing something different in the Township. Having gourmet pizza and bagel sandwiches they expanded to vegetable samosas; ice cream is also available for those with a sweet tooth.

They also can brew all the specialty coffees for those wanting a taste of the big city and have other cold beverages available too. They wanted something different for their lodgers, passing tourists and the local population. Delivery is also available depending on the order. Being a "Food Truck" there is the opportunity to cater for special events throughout the area.

There are 3 employees looking after this seasonal business as it is not open every day. To find out when they are open call, or visit their website or Facebook page.


2471 Hwy506

Cloyne, ON

K0H 1K0

(613) 336-9900

(778) 384-3382



Owners: Mike & Nawar Hage



The Tweet Boutique

The Tweet Boutique is owned by local photographer Amy Kay, along with her husband Brian. It provides quality bird feeders, premium seed and other backyard birding accessories as well as nature gifts, unique Canadian art and a vast selection of Amy’s images in the gallery of the boutique.

With unlimited opportunities to explore the diversity of habitats within the area, Amy took up wildlife photography nearly two decades ago, with birds quickly becoming her primary subject. She spent years learning bird behaviour, and about our area’s various species, while spending hours in -30º temperatures searching for winter birds and happily fighting off black flies while capturing the flood of incoming spring warblers. However, with her images being recognized and appearing in numerous publications such as Canadian Geographic and Audubon, it was worth it. Still, showcasing her art in a more traditional way has always been her aspiration. After the long awaited purchase of the storefront on Road 506, the gallery, along with the opportunity to offer backyard birding supplies, transpired.

Within this beautiful region, it was easy for Amy to be inspired by nature. Her desire to reveal to others the natural treasures found in the area has led to the planning of birding tours and photography workshops starting in the Spring.

The Tweet Boutique’s ideal location at the intersection of Road 506 and Hwy. 41, provides convenient access for permanent and seasonal residents plus those who are just passing through. The variety of backyard birding supplies will bring birds to your yard and the photography and artwork will bring nature into your home or cottage.


The Tweet Boutique The Tweet Boutique

1007 Road 506
Cloyne, Ont. K0H 1K0

Tim's Auto Body

Seeing the need for an Auto Body Repair Service in the North Frontenac area Tim opened his business in 1984. His service includes cars, trucks, heavy duty vehicles, boats and even the odd snow machine over the years.
He eventually saw an opportunity to expand his services to providing tire sales and installation and other mechanical services. His Business mostly services the North Frontenac and Addington Highlands area; however he has done some work for people from the Palmer Rapids area (and several other areas) as has had referrals needing his expertise. Other clients from Toronto and other major centers have used his service as they have their vacation homes in the area.
Tim continues to thrive in the area due do the diversification of the business. Also the fact that he is the only auto body repair service still in the area, that he's aware of, makes him very busy.
Tim has assistance from his wife Lorraine when needed and he has no other employees at this time.
There is a future in this specific line of vehicle service in the area.
Even though things are very busy they find time to go cruising in a classic car and take trips with the new UTV.   

Tim's Auto Body Tims Auto Body
13775 HWY 41
Cloyne ON, K0H 1K0





Tumblehome Lodge 

George and Sue Cvetkowic bought Tumblehome Lodge from Ward Giffen at the end of July in 2019, leaving Ward and his daughter to operate that first year of their new ownership. The family from Wainfleet Ontario on the Lake Erie shore has been coming to the lodge since 1985.  As their family grew to 5 children they rented cottages from Ed and Shirley Giffen, then son Ward.  They loved the swimming, boating and fishing, and exploring the amazing shoreline of Crotch Lake. Just about zero development on kilometers of rocky wooded shoreline, great fishing and clean clear water. They have just finished putting away docks and boats after their second year of operation and will open next year on the first day of the walleye season, May 14.

The lake is also used by the Mississippi Valley Conservation Authority as a reservoir to manage annual water flows and nearby lake levels. Consequently its level goes up and down about 5 meters over the year. The lodge is located at the south end, just off the Ardoch Road, and is the only publicly available accommodation on the lake.  Next door Land O’ Lakes Lodge has been converted to an indigenous children’s camp. I asked George if he has any concerns about Crotch Lake and surrounding Crown Land being turned into Whiteduck Provincial Park in a proposal from the Algonquin Land Claim. George is indigenous himself with his mother from the Tuscarora band living in the Six Nations area near Brantford. He’s not concerned about the park proposal. It would make Tumblehome even more unique than it already is. In reality, he probably doubts it will happen in his lifetime.

Tumblehome started in the 1920’s with a different name, unknown to this writer or the current owners. Ed and Shirley Giffen named it Tumblehome, after the curvature at the ends of a canoe hull, when they purchased it. Ed and Shirley expanded it and added a 9 hole golf course.  Their son Ward operated the lodge for several years and now lives on the separate golf course property. It currently consists of 9 rooms in the main lodge plus 24 cabins and trailers scattered around the large property.

George and Sue end up serving many campers who come to use the township’s Crown Land Stewardship Program 70 campsites on Crotch Lake.  Many turn into the Tumblehome entry thinking it is a public access, many require assistance with boats.  George even gets involved in some campsite cleanups- apparently there are always campers who leave garbage.

I was given a short tour of modern trolling motor features. Electric, quiet, built in sonar that connects to the fish finder, GPS for returning later to an exact spot.  I wonder if the Ottawa woman who recently caught a 10 pound walleye was using one.

Tumblehome LodgeTumblehome Lodge
1090 Lodge Rd. 
Clarendon Station ON, K0H 1J0

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