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About Us

MISSION STATEMENT: We are dedicated to the consistent and certain delivery of quality services as measured by increased customer and employee satisfaction. 

We’re basically entrepreneurs who look for all kinds of opportunities! 

We have been a family-owned and operated business since 1974, first as a general contracting/building business.  Dean has undertaken and accomplished some pretty amazing construction jobs, besides building homes!

  • Our first company was Pohl Construction, specializing in custom-built homes in boat-access only locations on Raquette Lake. Dean’s signature on any house he built was a stained glass window some place!
  • We also built floating docks, The Tough Dock.
  • Log lean-to kits
  •  Promoted propane delivery by barge to camps accessible by boat only.
  • Eventually we added a housekeeping cottage, The Loft, to our array of income streams, followed by a 2nd housekeeping cottage, Birch Cottage.
  • For several years we offered garbage pick-up.  Don’t let anyone tell you there’s no money in garbage!
  • In addition to these sources of income Dean was maintenance superintendent at Raquette Lake Camps for 25 years and Donna was a teacher at Long Lake Central School.
  • Dean built the WW Durant during the winters of 1990 and 1991. He could only build in the winter because he had to tend to his construction/maintenance superintendent businesses in spring,summer and fall. Donna was teaching at the time. Building the Durant was not a solo effort by any means! Though Dean did most of the carpentry/welding work, three of our employees played critical roles. Don Bird assisted with the thinking, engineering and planning. Garry Hazen did the plumbing and wiring. Bill Cooley installed the engines and did the mechanical work.

When the Camps changed ownership, the new owners brought in their own maintenance superintendent and Donna’s teaching position was eliminated due to declining enrollment, a fact many school districts here in the Adirondacks face.

Time to regroup and try to extend the season!

  • The caboose was transformed from a conversation piece to a gift shop, featuring mostly items made locally, regionally and in the USA.
  • Donna began to develop her receptive business, planning one-day and multi-day tours for groups of 20 or more.
  • Dean decided to freeze the Durant into the ice and open up during the winter, catering primarily to snowmobilers.  This would extend the cash flow by a couple of months.
  • Chef Jim began to make and bottle his own salad dressings, Japanese Vinaigrette and Greek Vinaigrette.
  • Rachel began to make and bottle her own Bloody Mary mix.
  • Rachel formed an LLC to sell Bloody Mary mix on her own.

We are beginning our 30th season! We’ve been blessed with many things: good health; four amazing children with different talents and interests, all contributing to earning a living as a family; wonderful employees; loyal customers; tourism partners who get it; vendors who are flexible; not to mention living and working in a location with breathtaking beauty and fascinating history. We are grateful to all who have helped us get to where we are now. Stay tuned! We’re always looking for new opportunities! And they’re there!