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When Tides Turn Tour of Vermilion, Part 1 – and Giveaway

See the sights in Vermilion, Ohio featured in When Tides Turn by Sarah Sundin.

To celebrate the release of When Tides Turn, this week I’m conducting a photo tour of some of the sights in the book—and I’m giving away:

  • “Vintage White Blossoms” candle from Vermilion, Ohio—Dan & Tess’s hometown
  • “Women of WWII” sticky notes, including a WAVE (like Tess!), purchased at Pearl Harbor

To enter, leave a comment below (US & Canada only please), and/or on Monday’s Tour of Boston post and the upcoming Tour of Vermilion and U-boat Tour posts. You can earn extra entries by leaving a comment on each post. If you can’t leave a comment, please send me an email to enter. Giveaway ends Sunday, March 26, 2017 at 10 pm, Pacific Time. I’ll announce the winner here on Monday, March 27, 2017.

Welcome to Vermilion!

Dave & Sarah Sundin, Vermilion, Ohio (Photo: Sarah Sundin, August 2016)

Dave & Sarah Sundin, Vermilion, Ohio (Photo: Sarah Sundin, August 2016)

When choosing a hometown for the Avery family in the Waves of Freedom series, I wanted a small Ohio town on Lake Erie so my future naval officers could learn to love sailing and the water. Vermilion, Ohio prides itself on its nautical heritage—and I had my town. This past summer, my husband and I attended our son’s graduation from Navy boot camp in the Chicago area, and we took a lazy trek across the Midwest—including a full day in Vermilion. What a charming day it was!

Vermilion was built on the shores of Lake Erie and incorporated as a village in 1837. Long a site for fishing, shipbuilding, and recreational boating, the town enjoys its nautical heritage. The Vermilion River meanders through town, lined with beautiful vacation homes and docks.

The original Vermilion Lighthouse was built in 1847 and removed in 1929. Since there was no lighthouse during World War II—only a steel tower—I don’t mention it in the Waves of Freedom series. In 1991, a replica of the original lighthouse was built, 34 feet tall with a Fresnel lens.

Strolling down Main Street from Lake Erie, we reach the “Avery Home.” Of course, someone else lives there, because my characters aren’t REAL—as my kids remind me almost daily. But this is the house I chose, large enough for the Avery clan and right across the street from the river, where I set Mr. Avery’s fictional boatyard. And I was delighted to see modern boatyards along the river.

See more sights from When Tides Turn!

Tour of Boston

Tour of Vermilion, Part 2

U-Boat Tour, Part 1

U-Boat Tour, Part 2

46 Responses to “When Tides Turn Tour of Vermilion, Part 1 – and Giveaway”

  1. Sue Galucki

    Thank you for sharing these pictures. What a beautiful town!

  2. Elizabeth Litton

    Wow! Water, boats, lighthouses…what an awesome place!

  3. Carle Breunig

    Reading When Tides Turn, love the book and seeing where the fictional family live.

  4. Angela Aldridge

    What a charming town! Thanks for the tour!🙂👍

  5. Mary Tullila

    Oh now I know I need to see this place! History and nautical…I am so there.

  6. Diane Buie

    I love the photo tour! enjoyed seeing the lighthouse as well. Hope to read your book soon.

  7. Janice Laird

    I’ll have to see how far this is from Cleveland, and maybe stop by someday! And yes, OF COURSE the Averys need a house to live in! My characters always have porch swings, because I always loved the one at my dad’s boyhood home in Detroit.

  8. Carla K

    Thanks for sharing the photos. So cool to see what inspired your characters/locations in the books!

  9. Susan L

    Thank you for the tour of Vermilion. I love the house you chose.

  10. Lisa Hudson

    Another great tour!! Thanks for sharing with your readers!!

  11. Debora Wilder

    I love these pictures. I think it is great that you picked a house you saw for your fictional family. The fact that they are that real to you is a good part of why you are able to make them come alive for all of us.

  12. Lynne M Feuerstein

    Thank you so much,Sarah for choosing the Ohio town of Vemilion for the Avery’s hometown! It makes me so proud,especially since it’s only 20 minutes away from my own hometown of Sandusky. Thanks also for the beautiful picture tour, I must admit I haven’t been there too often and I had no idea how pretty it is. I think you picked the perfect town and house for the Avery’s . I can just imagine them walking in and out of that house and walking around the town. 🙂

  13. Natalie Sanchez

    Beautiful little town. What a wonderful home for the Avery family.

  14. Pam Kellogg

    Thanks for showing us these photos of Vermilion. I think it would be fun if the people who live in the Avery’s house saw their house here and were thrilled because they love your books. Or does that just happen in books? Your new book looks great. I’m behind on reading this series but want to read them soon.

  15. Tami

    Love seeing the places that inspire your word-pictures… makes it all come more alive!

  16. Amanda G.

    It looks like you guys had the perfect weather for a research trip. Posts like this plus your Pinterest storyboards are helpful for readers. Thank you for sharing.

  17. Kathy West

    The light house sure is cute, and is that a red propeller next to it?

  18. Jennifer Ruch

    Thanks for the tour! It makes me a little homesick for the Midwest!

  19. Pamela Morrisson

    I visited Vermilion twice as a child when my grandparents lived there but that was many years ago and I was too young to appreciate the gorgeous scenery. Loved seeing your photos! Hoping for a chance to read When Tides Turn soon.

  20. Janea walker

    I love this! I thought Vermilion was a made up place. It’s cool to see all the history.

  21. Rose Blacksrd

    Loved the pictures, thanks for sharing. The book sounds awesome too.

  22. Marty Moore

    Sarah, I said this on your FB page but, I think it is worth posting here as well. Having these photos and descriptions of the area where this took place, to me, adds so much to the book! I can’t imagine the amount of time you spend researching and scouting for your books. I feel that is what takes your books to the next level and what draws people to your books. Thank you for taking the time to not only write a phenomenal story, but to educate us about the true events of WWII.

  23. Laura Juranek

    I love the vivid details you add to your books and to see the “real” places is such a treat. I love the Avery house and can absolutely see them growing up there. Thanks for the tour😊

  24. Deanne Patterson

    What awesome pictures. This is such a beautiful town. I love how you visited it and got a real feel for the town. Such wonderful research.

  25. Lindsay

    It’s neat seeing the pictures to get a better feel for the stories! And I love seeing about all the research you do.

  26. Lori

    LOVE the research you do on your books! Can’t wait to read this one!

  27. Steph J

    I love seeing all the beautiful pictures. I especially like the light house pictures.

  28. Ted wilder

    This isn’t too far from Chippewa Lake, Ohio. That’s where I grew up.

  29. Madison MacDonald

    Very pretty photos and it makes for a lovely location to base part of the book on!

  30. Barbara Collver

    Beautiful pictures -helps when we read about someplace we’ve never been!
    We have a Chippewa Lk. in Mich. where we went on our honeymoon – 60 years this June!

  31. Barbara Collver

    Beautiful pictures -helps when we read about someplace we’ve never been!
    We have a Chippewa Lk. , Mich. where we went on our honeymoon – 60 years this June!

  32. Caryl Kane

    Thank you so much for sharing with us! 🙂

  33. Laciee Steinhauser

    The town looks beauiful, it seems strange to see boats along a small river in town!

  34. Lize

    Love seeing the sites! helps to imagine it so much better while reading! I would love to travel to all these places but since that would be hard to do, seeing photos is second best!