Rock Bay is a fictional village nestled along the non-fictional Saint Lawrence River in Upstate NY. As the characters took shape, I knew I wanted them to populate this beautiful area that has become a major part of my life. The Thousand Islands Region is a source of creative and spiritual inspiration for me, but I also wanted a little more creative license, hence the birth of Rock Bay!
In Rock Bay
The Willow Tree Cafe
In the first book of the series, Lacey works at the Willow Tree. This European style cafe is named after the regal tree presiding over a small park next door. When the weather cooperates, some customers take their breakfast or lunch below the willow to enjoy the scenery. This setting is based on one of my favorite places in Clayton, NY.
Lake of the Isles
River Magic mostly takes place in the town of Rock Bay. Though fictional, it’s both inspired and surrounded by real locations on the St. Lawrence River in Upstate NY.
Lacey first meets Cian at Dewolf Point State Park during a middle school club outing. They’re paired up to kayak together around Lake of the Isles. This body of water is actually in the middle of Wellesley Island (one of the largest of the 1000+ islands) and connects to the St. Lawrence River.
It’s a beautiful place to enjoy nature and observe wildlife. My husband and I kayaked here before having my daughter, and we recently went back to say hello. The water was extra choppy from the wind that day, but we saw plenty of ducks, a stick bug, a water snake, and even a crayfish!
No mermaids, though. I keep looking.
The Crystal Cauldron
Lidia merges her business skills with her love of witchcraft, tarot, and gems by opening The Crystal Cauldron in Rock Bay. It becomes a hub of celebration and learning for the Pagan community in the Rituals of Rock Bay series.
One of the main inspirations for this shop came from Sackets Harbor, NY, where the St. Lawrence River meets Lake Ontario. The Handmaiden’s Garden is a whimsical, welcoming metaphysical store right on the main street of this scenic and historic location. I’ve always appreciated the owner’s hospitality to both myself and my young daughter. I also love that she makes and sells her handmade soaps along with a wide selection of divination tools, candles, incense, and more. The bright windows, soft lavender walls, and shelves of crystals inspired some of Lidia’s store. It’s one of the major settings in River Magic.