I first stepped foot on the KBIA campus in March of 2009 when I toured a snowy facility with then President of the Board, Andy Harrington. This was my first lengthy conversation with a KBIA member since accepting the position a few weeks prior, and as we walked along it became clear to me that it was – and is – not just the campus but the people that make KBIA special. KBIA has been a central part of my professional and personal life since then – and it is bittersweet as I prepare for my eleventh and last summer at KBIA. Members have asked what they can do to thank me for my service at KBIA – and all that I ask is for you to join me as a member this summer, as nothing would make me happier than to have as many members, new and returning, be part of KBIA this summer. Additionally, if you are able, to contribute to our scholarship fund and/or facilities fund – two areas that have experienced a lot of growth under my tenure and areas that I hope will remain strong for the foreseeable future.
I view my role as a caretaker of a community establishment, with the responsibility of handing over KBIA to the next Director better than it was when I received it. KBIA has come a long way in the last ten years that I have been Director, and it is well positioned for the next leader. What I am most proud of though, is rising to the challenge of keeping KBIA’s culture of inclusiveness, friendliness, and the balance between informality, safety, and structure strong. I have hired many counselors that grew up coming to KBIA, and I hope they will someday become the next generation of parents, members, and leaders of this venerable institution.
But first, I’m looking forward to the 2019 season with a few new changes in the mix. We have added a laser sailing class which is designed for both sailors who have mastered the fundamentals of sailing and are ready for more independence, while including older novice sailors who are eager to jump into the sport. We also have continued to rework the offerings for art electives, and are exploring other areas that can keep older children engaged. The Board will be meeting later this month and will be asked to approve long overdue upgrades to the two main bathrooms in Smith.
Personal connections between members are central to what makes KBIA strong and we are excited to continue to offer opportunities for members to socialize and meet one another. We will offer extended family bonfire and barbeque nights when the tides allow, two family days in KBIA’s pool, and sweets and coffee on Fridays. More details on all classes and events will be in the 2019 Registration Guide due out at the end of March.
We have added extra sections of some of the more popular classes that tend to fill up, especially in the middle of the summer when we are busier. This is in hopes to reduce the likelihood of children not getting a space in the classes of their choice – however, as we process registrations in the order they are received, it is still best to send in your registrations as early as possible.
In the meantime, we invite you to join KBIA as a member, or renew your membership. Our 2019 membership form can be found on our website here. Membership fees support KBIA in the year they are given and remain crucial to the financial health and stability of our nonprofit organization while still giving scholarships.
Your generosity, in any amount, helps us make a difference both in this community and our children’s lives. In addition to our membership, please consider a donation to our scholarship fund, facilities fund, and/or our general fund. Visit the “How to Donate
” section of our website to find out more about each fund. All donations help support our beloved KBIA, a place where children explore the vast and rugged beauty of the Maine coast in summer, while building knowledge, leadership, and respect for themselves, others and their world.