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Romance at The Cabbage Shed

Find your mate (or someone else’s) waiting for you in Elberta

By Susan Koenig
The Betsie Current

There is something about The Shed that allows one to feel comfortable going in alone to sit at the bar or at a table, even if only strangers are present. The bartenders and servers are cute and friendly, happy to introduce one person to another, but you can also feel free to introduce yourself, because the ambiance is like a beach bar. This is not a place where females feel they must be escorted. On a Saturday night, there are easily as many singles as couples of all ages.

Local Carolyn Smeltzer was out with the girls one Saturday night in 1987, scoping out the guys who came in the front door, when she spied Dr. George Ryckman, who had actually spied her first, coming over to introduce himself (he made it easy). Within an hour, that debonair George was holding Carolyns’s hand, and six months later they were married (and still are).

Melissa Chatterton had just begun working at The Shed in 2000 when she met Jason Witmer, also an employee. The two married on the beach in Elberta and had a beautiful wedding reception on the transformed lower deck of The Shed. They now live in Colorado and have two children.

This writer met her “soleman” Steven Fernand in the winter of 2001 while he was performing with The Benzie Playboyz on The Shed stage.

There are many more of us happy Shed couples out there, so put on your favorite outfit and head to Elberta for a relaxed evening of summer (or winter) fun.

Originally published in The Betsie Current in 2006.

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