John Parker & Maureen (Mo) Hutchinson-Parker
We’ve worked together for 35 Years in Hospitality & have been married for 25 years…
We have a combined 84 YEARS in the HOSPITALITY BUSINESS! Wow!!
Time flies when you are having fun!
It’s our 18th Season at the Northern Lights! Online Reservations have Saved our Souls. The Booking Platform is AMAZING! It keeps track of pricing, room inventory, never allows a double booking, and sends automatic email confirmations. Everything is in writing, and there’s no confusion.
The Phone is obsolete, and we only take Online Reservations & Cancellations MUST be made in writing, through Email.
We LOVE the Hospitality Business (It’s not for everyone), and have received many Awards over the years
- American Express Hospitality Award
- Alberta’s Gold Key Hospitality Award
- Multiple Tripadvisor Awards for Best Bargain and Excellence
I grew up in Sault Ste Marie, Ontario, John grew up in the Toronto area. We met in 1982 at the Convention Inn Hotel in Edmonton (Now the Delta Inn South). I worked at the Top of the Inn Dining Room for 20 years. John, the Executive Chef of the Hotel worked there for 16 years. Oh how we LOVE and MISS that Hotel & everyone that worked with us.
The Top of the Inn Diningroom staff gave us an AWESOME going away present (Of course it hangs in our Motel Office). The Top of the Inn Dining Room closed shortly after we left. It’s now a Banquet Room. 🙁
Through the 80’s and 90’s, we lived for Travelling and Gambling. We drove through 46 States and 9 Provinces, collecting Casino Chips along the way. Some Chips were FREE, some cost us a FORTUNE. lol!
Playing Blackjack with John was so much fun, that I thought it’d be great to learn how to deal Blackjack for Klondike Days each summer.
We were tired of being happy, so we got married in 1992. 😛
In 1999, we moved back to Ontario to be closer to our families. We enjoyed the Hospitality Industry so much that we decided to “GO ALL IN” and buy the Northern Lights Motel. Our BIGGEST Gamble Ever!
We ran the Motel year round in the first 5 years, and created the “Canadian Snow Gauge” 4 Beer Cases High, in 2003, Years before Social Media and Facebook. We ran the Snow Cam for 13 years!
One time, while going to photograph Black Trout Lake’s ice for the Snowmobilers, we hit Black Ice and slammed into a Rock Cut head on…. was Airborne, then crashed onto the middle of the highway! Yes, we were still smiling because we were unhurt and ALIVE! (We always look at the Positive)
It’s been such an interesting ride in Wawa (Pardon the Pun) – John became quite the handyman and I tried my hand at painting billboards. We were thrilled to have won this award 7 years ago.
Shirley Mills Wrote a nice story about us ~
After the loss of 12 Rooms in the 2012 Disaster, we never thought that we would reach “Review Quotas” for Awards again. But our Guests are amazing and posted a lot of great reviews. We won Best Bargain 2015 and an Excellence award in 2015 & 2016! A big Thank-you to all of our Wonderful Guests that gave us such nice Reviews & have supported us through the Years!
I LOVE photographing the wildlife and I post the pics on our FACEBOOK page.
March 2016 – My photo of Penelope, our Coyote, dons Chalet 2’s kitchen.
April 30, 2017 – I must find a frame for Charlie! Isn’t he so cute? Like the Whack-A-Mole game! lol!
In 2015, I made a couple of videos YouTube Channel
September 2016, I have a NEW OBSESSION! I make puzzles out of my pics on www.jigidi.com
My handle is nlmotel
I’m pretty fast at putting Puzzles together! Try to beat my time!
Our life at the Northern Lights has been through many changes in 17 years. We’ve always accepted our challenges and have never been daunted by them. We continually morph with the times, and figure out how we are going to make this place the best that we can for our valued guests.
Of course the biggest change was the flood destroyed 3/4’s of our Business & closed it for a year. The Disaster made the National News and the Trans Canada Highway was closed for a week while they rebuilt it.
At that time, no one thought our business could be saved, so the Ministry of Transportation did not rebuild our entrance. 🙁 But our home and a few rooms were undamaged, so we simply played the hand that we were dealt & hope we get our entrance back some year.
Our Entrance has been stalled because Bell Telephone won’t come and remove the “temporary” telephone pole that they put in after the disaster.