Monday, August 24, 2015

Sunnybank revisted...

"Collie Social" Photo courtesy of Faith Peters

Every August they travel from far and wide to visit a small park in New Jersey.  Some come alone, but most of them come with their four-footed best friends.  If you ask them why they made the trip, they will all respond with the same sentiment, they love collies and they love Sunnybank.  Most of the individuals who attend “The Gathering” each year grew up reading the stories written by Albert Payson Terhune.  Many of them fell in love with collies because of the stories of the heroic and loveable collies of Sunnybank.  Such is the impact of Terhune’s books about his Sunnybank collies, that even now, 100 years later, people still love his collie stories. 

Terhune with Gray Dawn, Explorer and Sigurdson
We have attended The Gathering of Collies at Sunnybank many times.  And each time, as I walk across the green grass, shaded by the old trees and bordered by the fire blue lake, I am transported back to the days when Sunnybank belonged to Terhune and his collies.

Skyler by the Fire Blue Lake - photo courtesy of Faith Peters

One can’t help but imagine Lad, Lady, Bruce, Gray Dawn and Wolf running across the lawn, carefree and beautiful as they rush to greet the Master and Mistress.  While the Sunnybank collies are long gone, along with Terhune and his wife, Anice, their memories will live on in the hearts and minds of collie lovers all over the world.  And for one weekend every August collies once again return to play and romp on the lawn and hills of Sunnybank.  And in my opinion, the fact that these collies can all be traced back to the great Sunnybank collies of the past just makes it all the more special!  It is a magical sight that brings joy to every collie lover able to make the journey to The Gathering.

photo courtesy of Linda DeYoung
Last week The Gathering was held at Sunnybank and individuals from all over attended.  On Saturday there were discussions on collie health related topics.  There was also a rescue parade, to celebrate all the collies that were rescued from shelters and adopted into loving families.  And on Sunday the puppies are celebrated with a puppy match. 

Sunnybank Friends Gather Together  (photo by Faith Peters)

Puppy Match - photo courtesy of Linda DeYoung

It is a fun weekend, and gives everyone a chance to socialize with other collie lovers while strolling the grounds of Sunnybank.  Visitors attending the Gathering can even sign up for a walking tour of Sunnybank and visit the graves of all the Sunnybank collies of the past.

The original Sunnybank house, long gone, but never forgotten.


There is even a junior handling competition for kids interested in learning how to show collies.

Captain, Scarlett's brother and littermate.
The AKC even featured an article about The Gathering, which you can read here:
crazy for collies

and here is an article about Albert Payson Terhune:

And check out Scarlett's trip to Sunnybank, as a puppy!
Sunnybank Scarlett

just a few of our friends we were lucky enough to meet up with at The Gathering- photo by Faith Peters


  1. Looks like a pawesome time to spend with many collie friends :) Milo & Jet

  2. One of these year's I want to make it to the Gathering! Thanks for sharing about it. Would be a dream to be in a place with so many collies!

  3. Love the vintage shots. Hope all the pups went home with the right owner BOL
    Lily & Edward

  4. Just fantastic ! I would love having this experience, nice meet , wonderful collies ! Thanks for sharing it and some day, who knows I will be there with my Fairieland paws.
    Greetings Cintia Fumagalli - Brazil

  5. Looks like everyone - collies included - had a great time! I wish I could have explored the old house before it became "long gone but not forgotten"!!

  6. That looks to be almost as much fun as a gathering of Siberians ;-)

    Thanks fur sharing so many Collie items!

    PeeEssWoo: Well, she's Holly - but Auntie Di also loved Holly Hobbie as a young one so it bekhame part of her name - along with her nikhkname of LITTLE ;-)

  7. Grrrrr - Blogger has eaten my khomment fur breakfast -

    Let's try again!

    That looks to be almost as much fun as a gathering of Siberians!

    Thanks fur sharing so many Collie items!

    PeeEssWoo: As fur Holly's name, Auntie Di also loved Holly Hobbie so it bekhame part of her name - along with her nikhkname of LITTLE!

  8. That is a wonderful meet that picture of all those beautiful collies was great!!
    stella rose and momma

  9. beautiful photos!!
    looks like so much fun

  10. Oh what fun! I don't even have a collie but I want to go!