We have had the privilege over the years of having some wonderful, outgoing young adults as part of our Aikens family.
They have provided you with a memorable experience, but ever wonder what they are up to now? Did they follow in the career path they were on? Have they gotten married? Started a family? See below to find out!
WHERE ARE THEY NOW?
Years worked at Aikens: 6ish, first year worked was 1998.
Where do you work now: I own multiple wellness centers with my wife in the Boston area.
Are you Married: Yes to a beautiful Bostonian named Kendra
Do you have Kids? Yep, Daisy Dukes (7) and Huckleberry (3)....well they are dogs but same thing
I miss Aikens every summer!
Years worked at Aikens: Worked for Gerry & Lorraine Turenne and Philippe & Jackie Lavack for eight great years, from 1991 to 1998. Also worked previously as a young dockhand from 1981 to 1988 when my dad, Gerry Lavergne, owned the lodge.
What are you up to now: Been enjoying my dream job as a Fisheries Biologist for North/South Consultants in Winnipeg since 2001.
Are you married?: Yes (Michelle Blanchette). Our 20th wedding anniversary will be this fall on September 12.
Do you have kids?: Yes, we have the supposed ‘million dollar family’ – one girl (Josée - 16) and one boy (Riel - 8).
I still get to spend a lot of time in the great outdoors, thanks in part to my job, but mostly to a remote cabin we bought at Beresford Lake way back in 2003. (The lake can be seen in the far, far background to the east when flying from Silver Falls to Aikens Lake.)
Years worked at Aikens: Started in 2011, worked 2 years.
Where do you work now: Chef in Gillam Manitoba at one of the Bi Pole sites called Keeyask
Are you Married: Nope
Do you have Kids: None that I know of!
I have just been traveling the world. I would like to buy a house soon as well as start a food truck business…
Years worked at Aikens: Started in 2007, worked 4 full summers, and select contract guiding since then.
What are you up to now: I am the Associate Category Manager of Powersports at Cabela’s
Are you Married: Happily
Do you have Kids: Matéo is 18 months, and we have one too few.
If you bring Spitz in the boat, the next guide will probably have a hard time getting them out, so that’s fine.
Years worked at Aikens : Worked at Aikens starting in 1981 through 1989, so 9 years. Then was a guest guide and/or labourer for many years through the 1990s and 2000s.
What are you up to now : 2 years retired from 27 years as the Athletic Director at the Université de Saint-Boniface.
Are you married, do you have kids: Yes to Darcie Kiene, with 2 children, Sophie 22, Graphic Designer for the Festival du Voyager, and Marco 20, Business Administration student and currently Aikens 3rd year guide.
Still an avid fisherman and hoping to continue being a guest guide in the years to come.
Years worked at Aikens: Started in 2002, worked 5 or 6 years.
What are you up to now: Chiropractor - Lindenwoods Chiropractic
Are you Married: Yes
Do you have Kids: Yes, I have a 4 month old girl - Stella
As much as I miss the fishing at Aikens, I miss playing guitar at Big Molly’s bar with Kik and Julien! I now look forward to a yearly fishing trip at Aikens!
Years worked at Aikens: 2007-2015
What are you up to now: Power Engineer at Ste. Anne Hospital
Are you Married: basically…
Do you have Kids? Nope
Years worked at Aikens: Started in 1998, worked 6 years
Where do you work now: Business with Arbonne, contract work with Pharmeng and I run the ground transportation for Aikens : D
Are you Married: yes
Do you have Kids: Yes, Nadia 7 and Mateo 5
Love anything health and wellness and always chasing my dreams. Love crossfit, yoga, hanging out with my amazing family/friends and reading!
Years worked at Aikens: Started in 2010, worked 6 years.
What are you up to now: Graduate studies, University of Ottawa, Department of Biology
Are you married: Not yet
Do you have kids: No, but I have a few fishing rods that I cherish quite dearly...
Years worked at Aikens: 2011-2013
What are you up to now: Still a full-time graduate student, but also work part-time at a vet clinic
Are you Married: patiently waiting (refer to Mars' info above)
Do you have Kids? I think one horse counts
I welcome requests for contract housekeeping at Aikens
Years worked at Aikens: Started in 2006, worked 4 years.
What are you up to now: EKT 90 Inc. (Mechanical Contractor) as Health & Safety Manager
Are you Married: Yes
Do you have Kids? No Kids
I am always trying to find the time to come back to Aikens.
Years worked at Aikens: 1996 and 1999
What are you up to now: Executive Director, Manitoba Lodges and Outfitters Association
Are you Married: Yes, since 2011
Do you have Kids? One son, born in 2014
I went from working at a lodge to representing the entire industry!
Years worked at Aikens: Started in 2002. No clue on how many, it felt like 2 but was prob 6-7
What are you up to now: I'm journeyman powerline technicien
Are you married: Yes.
Do you have any kids: I have two girls, 6 and 3
Other info about me: Gerry characterized me as a "character" guide...so I'll go with that.
Years worked: Started in 2011, worked 3 full years, 3 contract
What are you up to know: Thompson Fire & Emergency Services
Kids: Not that I know of!
Years worked at Aikens: 2001-2003 (Guide)
Where do you work now: Archer Daniels Midland Company (Canadian Grain Trading Manager)
Are you Married: yes (former chef Devon Schwabiuk)
Do you have Kids? Yes, 2 boys, Brady age 5 and Jackson 2 1/2.
I still have love for the lake and fishing. Can't wait to get my boys up to the lodge in a few years!
Years worked at Aikens: Combined? Lost count...(Megan started in 1998 and Rob in 1993)
Where do you work now: Rob: Network Systems Administrator for a Bank. Meg: Training Specialist for a pharmaceutical manufacturing company.
Are you Married: N/A
Do you have Kids? Yes, Joe and Cash
Still enjoying the outdoors!!!
They say “you get what you pay for” ... at Aikens you get more. They know what they’re doing, and it shows. Its called “The Aikens Experience.” The lodging is top notch. The food is outrageous! Aikens Lake is a dream to fish. The staff - how they find and keep so many polite, friendly, courteous, intelligent, and attentive people year after year I have no idea. They learn your likes and dislikes; they make you feel welcome and relaxed.
—Steven J Kuzmich,
People sometimes want to try new locations or lakes in Canada but I really do not know why our group would ever look elsewhere or even think about it. The fishing is world class and the accommodations and hospitality are five-star.
We wanted to get a true fly-in Canadian fishing/wilderness experience, but be able to do that without having to spend two days traveling to get there. Overall, the experience was exactly what we wanted. Great fishing, great setting, great service and accommodations that allow you to really relax and enjoy quality time with your family.
One of the coolest things about Aikens is you could have terrible fishing and have an awesome time there. Well-fed and well-served, plenty of beer to keep you warm. Tremendous service. Of course, the fishing’s great, too, but you have fun either way.
Salt Lake City, Utah
Incredible staff and amazing fishing. The accommodations are top notch and the food is first class. You won't find a better lodge in North America for pike and walleye fishing. The owners really know how to run this place. The memories made here are like no other.
What I love about Aikens? The ever present welcoming attitude that starts when you exit the plane and ends, well, never actually ends from what I can tell. The entire staff which is well selected and well trained, guides who make fishing fun and easy, the size of the lake (not too small for serious fishing and not too big for novices), the breakfasts, the shore lunches, the dinners, the awards handed out at dinner, the evening fishing with dock staff making sure your boat is ready, and the bar that gives you a chance to meet fun and interesting people to share a fishing story, a joke, or life story.
Our guide really listened to what we wanted to do and tailored our day specifically to us. To me, the shorelunch was the highlight of each day. The shorelunch sites are set-up so well in very scenic spots. You can watch the Aikens videos and read the website about the fancy cabins, and the food, and how great the fishing and the service is, but one thing you can't really appreciate until you're here is how beautiful it all is.
Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota
I’m an amateur rank fisherman and I caught a ton of fish, including a Master Angler pike. That’s what makes Aikens Lake so great, you can get guys like me that really don’t know what they’re doing, and you start to believe that you might.
My husband and my dad had always talked about going to Canada or Alaska, so when I got the idea to give them a fishing trip as a surprise gift I did about six months of research. Once I talked with Pit, I was sold. It was really a surprise to them. They were so excited, and they just had a wonderful time at Aikens. They enjoyed their dream trip, and I don’t think it will be their last time to Aikens.
Pit and his team have done a wonderful job of putting together the perfect gem of an outpost camp. We love going to the Lost Lake outpost because it provides you the seclusion and serenity without comprising the nice luxury-type components.
The Four Seasons of fishing lodges. What's truly impressive is that ownership is constantly improving the experience. Every year you arrive and notice improvements. I'm just back from our trip to Aikens with my son. In the last 15 months he's been to Copenhagen, Berlin, Estonia, St. Petersburg, Helsinki, Stockholm, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, China, Venice, Croatia, Greece and Turkey – but said this was his favorite trip ever. He slept with his Aikens hat on last night!
Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin
Those young staff members make me realize that our future is in good hands. Every one of them are class act young people, such a joy to associate with when you see what is going on across the land. Thanks again for the great hospitality from you and ALL of the staff.
North Little Rock, Arkansas
Truly an experience you'll want to relive over and over. This father-son-grandpa trip went from being a once in a lifetime experience, to an annual fishing trip! See you next summer!
Aikens is the perfect place for a family trip. The cabins are the best we’ve ever been in, the lodge is beautiful, and of course Pit and Julie are wonderful hosts.
Wisconsin President Organization, Group Leader
My husband and I never go back to the same place twice, but we loved it so much at Aikens we knew by the end of our first week we’d be back. It’s just how well they take care of you there. They make you feel like you’re part of the family.
Lake Oswego, Oregon
I’ve taken many large groups to Aikens and I always tell people beforehand how incredible the service is at Aikens. Every person has said to me at the end of the trip, “We believed you before, but I just can’t believe how good they treat you here!” One time Pit and Julie didn’t have the type of alcohol on-hand one of our guests was drinking, so they sent a plane out and got it.
Westman Dreams for Kids
I call it a 5-star hotel in the wilderness. It’s the neatest place we’ve ever been, it’s like fantasy island.
Each year we go somewhere as a family. We’ve been to Hawaii, Disney and many other places, but Aikens was one of the best trips we’ve ever had. Our trip was terrific, and my grandson loved every minute of it.
You think you’re at a Ritz-Carlton, you seriously get that level of treatment and amenities. Nobody in Manitoba can compete with Aikens for the quality of the fishing, staff, and facilities.
Trip number five and once again Aikens Lake out did itself. I thought it impossible for this wonderful place to get any better.
NHL Senior VP of Hockey Operations, 14 year NHL player and captain, and Aikens Lake Honorary Pro Staff Guide
From the accommodations, to the staff and especially shore lunch, the entire experience at Aikens Lake is unmatched.
Former United States Vice-President
The photos are amazing and like the memories, they will last a lifetime.
Former NFL MVP Quarterback, TV Commentator, and Founder of the Boomer Esiason Foundation (against cystic fibrosis)