Meet the Ednas!
A funny little fact about the Ednas:
Upon meeting in their 30’s, they both realized the other’s legal first name was also Edna. Both had been given the nicknames “Lil” and “Skippy” when they were children. “My parents always loved the name Edna which is why they blessed me with Edna as my middle name.
Collectively we are “The Ednas”.
Edna “Lil” McGlocklin
Lil McGlocklin & her sister Betty worked for the Detroit Telephone company and lived at the YWCA across the street. Betty was dating a fella named John who knew a fella named Bob. Betty felt Bob would be fun to have a double date with her sister. Bob and Lil hit it off, decided to make a life together and got married. Shortly after finding out Lil was pregnant with their first child, Bob was called to service in the Korean War.
After proudly serving his country, Bob returned home to his family. He knew he didn't want to spend the remainder of his days working for others and never let go of his dream to own his own business. As luck would have it, on a construction site in Detroit, Michigan, in his 40th year, Bob met owners of a hotel that was for sale, The King Strang Hotel on Beaver Island.
Upon visiting, the McGlockins toured the island, went out to eat at The Circle M Supper Club and fell in love with island living. Negotiations with the hoteliers did not go as hoped so Bob and Lil began discussions for purchase of the Circle M Supper Club instead.
A family with a dream and five children, it was time to get organized and tighten their belts. They sold everything they could in Detroit and cut out all frivolous spending. Lil took a job waiting tables at the Livonia Holiday Inn restaurant so she could learn about the business.
In the summer of 1970, with every penny they had, Bob and Lil bought the Circle M Supper Club, bid farewell to their family and friends and loaded up five kids, five puppies and their daughter, Laurie’s, fifteen gallon tropical fish tank for the trip North.
The Beaver Island Ferry was met by a brigade of Islanders and caravans to help the McGlocklins move their belongings to their new home and business. Grandma Skip remembers meeting Grandma Lil the day she moved to the island. “Everyone came down to the dock to help them move. Everyone was anxious to help them get started with the restaurant and they did a fabulous job.”
In the beginning, Grandma Lil was nervous but realized quickly there was no time for that. She was a great cook, ran a tight team and worked her ass off. Restaurant work was not for the faint of heart. Lil was not exactly prepared for how much work The Circle M would entail but she embraced the people of Beaver Island as they adored her. Living above the restaurant, her kitchen was also part of her home and dinner service felt like having friends over for supper.
One of her frequent guests was Grandma Skip. Grandma Lil found a kindred spirit in Grandma Skip. Both women were loyal and loving, cherished their friends, family and patrons, very determined and certainly not afraid of hard work.
For 26 years, Grandma Lil and Grandpa Bob lived their dream. Retiring was as bittersweet as it was well deserved. The Circle M still exists today and is owned by family friends.
Edna “Skip” McDonough
Skip McDonough and her dear friend, Joy, worked as RN’s at St. Mary’s Hospital in Grand Rapids, Michigan. On May 15th, 1954, Skip and Joy attended a fellow nurse’s wedding where she met Joy’s brother, Bud. Bud McDonough had just completed a tour in the air force and was returning home to Beaver Island, Michigan to help run the family store, McDonough’s Market.
Over the next several weeks, Skip and Bud got to know one another through letters. Skip then visited Beaver Island in June. By November 6th, six months after meeting, Skip and Bud were married and Skip moved to the island permanently.
Skip’s first job on the island was cleaning cabins but she could usually be found hanging around McDonough’s Market because “That was where Bud was so I would go, sit and watch.” She began working at McDonough’s the following year, portioning cereal for patrons with “the hoochie” (see explanation below). She would help stock shelves, bag groceries and run the register.
Grandma Skip, Aunt Joy and Lil Cole would also help deliver babies on the island. “I loved helping people. Being there when a mother met her child for the first time… it was wonderful.”
Her first son, Tim McDonough, was born in the winter of 1957 followed quickly by her second son, Tom McDonough, in the summer of 1958. Always the over-achiever, Skip went on to have seven children in ten years.
When Tim was five he began working at the store, behind the meat counter with his Dad. Skip eventually hired babysitters so she too could begin working at McDonough’s Market full time. “It would be interesting to talk to the babysitters! Those boys, bless em.”
Grandpa Bud went to Michigan State University and became a graduate of their meat cutting program. Grandma Skip’s father, Ralph Johnson was also a meat cutter on mainland Michigan and Uncle Tim has trained his twin sons, Brad and Drew, to carry the torch after him.
In 1972 Grandpa Bud was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. “He worked as long as he could and as much as he could.” Uncle Tim was going to Central Michigan University and Uncle Bill to Davenport. Both brothers left school to come home and help with the store. Uncle Jim McDonough joined them at a later date and the three brothers own and run the store to this day.
“When you walk into McDonough’s Market, there is an intangible feeling that is so special. You are greeted by our family and their team who, for generations, have loved their Island home and have taken excellent care of their community.” - Skip
Hoochie (hooche)- Noun: Informal/North American Orgin
Anything Grandma Skip doesn’t know the proper name for. This could be a cereal scoop, a wine glass, a menu at a restaurant, a doorknob etc. “Hoochie” is her favorite word.
In their constant pursuit of hospitality, The Ednas were a team. When Grandma Lil needed an ingredient for a recipe, Grandma Skip would bring it to her from the market.
“When we became friends I would come to her. She would be busy cooking and once she was through would join us in the dining room for a cocktail. We would have friends luncheons. Lil always seemed to be on the working end of it because she would prepare lunch and then come sit with us. The winter time was the nicest time to be with her. She wasn't as busy and could come to town to see us. Mostly we would go to her for a hot drink to warm up.” -Skip
“Skip worked so hard. I would go to see her during closing hours and find her still at the store. When she felt the floors needed a scrub, she would get down on her hands and knees and really scrub em’. The details of her business were so important to her and I really respected her for that.” -Lil
During this time Skip’s son, Tom, and Lil’s daughter, Laurie, became great friends and fell in love. Fifteen years later, Tom and Laurie would marry and have a daughter whom they would name Jordan Edna. Jordan Edna would grow up to love travel and would eventually meet a talented, British chef, Jon Tubby, whose dream was to open his own restaurant. They married and are here, back to the roots of hospitality and fired up about their new chapter.
Excited to honor the Ednas….