Boathouse on the mend - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Boathouse on the mend

July 31, 2011 - Burlington, Vermont

At the Auer Family Boathouse, the sounds of summer echo throughout the lakefront.

Charlie's been especially busy this summer. Not because of the customers, but because of what happened this spring.

"Right now on the outside everything is back to normal, yes" Auer said.

This is the second generation of the Auer family to run the boathouse. It started in the 20's and for Charlie and his older sister Christine, but all accounts this has been a rough year.

The record breaking flooding hit the boathouse especially bad, standing water destroyed the family piano and many mementos. Charlie, discouraged by the sheer volume of destruction, thought he would never open again.

But with the help of friends and volunteers, the place is almost back to it's normal self. The Charlie's Boathouse Band plays on.

"There was debris everywhere, there was mud in the boathouse, it was a mess," said Steve Bourgeous, a family friend.

At one point 200 volunteers helped Charlie get his family landmark back into working shape.

"It really gives me a good feeling that people want me to stay open," Auer said.

On Monday, he turns 80-years-old.

Charlie says the greatest present is having the boathouse open and all the friends that made it happen.

Joe Carroll - WCAX News

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