The 85th+1 celebration and reunion brought together dozens of campers, counselors and alums from near and far, both in time and geography. In addition to rekindling cherished friendships, singing favorite songs and sharing camp meals over the long Labor Day weekend, visitors heard about the plans for a new camp kitchen.
Kent announced the plans to rebuild the kitchen on Saturday evening during announcements. Many were unaware of how challenging and costly it has been to keep the old kitchen “patched together,” but it didn’t take close inspection for everyone to understand a new kitchen was long overdue. Kent shared that just before the reunion started, he had been under the Jackson (the industrial sterilizer), fixing it once again.
Eyes were focused on Kent as he unveiled the rendering of the new kitchen, a beautiful watercolor of what it will look like once finished. Folks examined the rendering closely, and poured over the floor plans, curious about every detail. Jack Freeman, the architect, sat at a table on the eating platform after announcements and shared the plans with people — the better layout, larger refrigeration, consolidated storage space, and even a root cellar and restrooms.Camp alums were pleased to see in the planned structure the familiar elements and profile of the old kitchen.
Marlys joined the festivities and praised the project – saying years ago that a new kitchen was badly needed. Tara, the current Food Servicers Director, is clearly pleased with the prospect of a truly functional and comfortable kitchen. She and her staff have worked closely with Kent and Jack to develop a more efficient work space.
The cost of the new kitchen is estimated to be one million dollars. Long time family camper and advisory board member David Polkinhorne talked about the commitment of the camp advisory board to raise $200,000 to pay for kitchen equipment in support of the project. He announced that contributions have been made or pledged by 100% of the advisory board, and, along with gifts from other friends of camp, $61,500 has already been raised. “This is a truly fantastic way to give back to camp and ensure another 86 years of campers are well fed,” David told the crowd.
To learn more about the kitchen project or contribute, visit www.bar717.com/kitchen.