Centre Gives starts tomorrow! Mark your calendars and bookmark our link at Centre Gives. A donation of $10 on May 11th or 12th helps to qualify Friends of Golden Pond for a portion of a $200,000 stretch pool. More donations or larger donations help us receive a larger portion of the stretch pool. There are many other monetary prizes throughout the 2 days that we can acquire with active participation and unique donors as well. Our mission at Golden Pond is to provide leadership and youth development by offering safe and affordable experiences that will allow those youth and adults to develop courage, confidence and an appreciation for the outdoors through programming and camping at the property. Help get us started with our newly purchased property as we begin to roll out programming for the remainder of the year focused at outdoors skills and appreciation, mindfulness and educational opportunities. Our programs and events are designed for youth and family in any organization such as Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, Church Groups, Frontier Girls, Adventure Scouts, 4-H Clubs, the Home Schooling Community and so many more …. Your generous donation to our cause on May 11th or May 12th will go a long way to making Golden Pond a successful destination experience for all. Sharing out with your friends and colleagues is also another great way to help Golden Pond thrive! #CentreGiveshttps://centregives.org/organi…/210-friends-of-golden-pond
We have been very busy over the last few months working on our business and future plans. We want to take this time to also thank all of you who have made contributions and help to keep our dream and this camp alive. We still have a long way to go, but we have some news to share. We are excited to announce that Friends of Golden Pond has fully executed and Agreement of Sale with the current owner. Per our agreement, we must purchase the property and close no later than April 30, 2021 at the bank. We should have some awesome news in the next 30-45 days as we make our final trek towards ownership of Golden Pond!
We are excited for the start of the season! We have many rentals already on the books, so please contact us if you would like to stay. Along with that, we have many exciting events that will be sponsored by Friends of Golden Pond in the upcoming months. One such event is our Mindfulness series that is a three part event. Each part can stand alone, but we would love to see you at all three. The dates are posted on our calendar and happen once a month in March, April and May. We have many other events too on our calendar. Please take a preview and we will fill you in closer to the events. All proceeds will go to Friends of Golden Pond to help with the daily expenses of the camp. We will also need some volunteers. If you are interested in helping, please reach out to us.
We also have a work weekend scheduled for April 24 and 25. We plan to clean camp after this hard winter. We have lots of tasks that need to be done from simple cleaning to moving and cutting firewood. We have many down trees this year and will need help moving, cutting and stacking wood. More information and pre-registration will be posted very soon. We are utilizing our Facebook pages for many announcements and we have many winter pictures if you ever wondered what it looked like under snow. Word of warning, its beautiful and breathtaking. We do have 3 areas with heat and are renting right now if you want to visit.
We have many more surprises planned for the year! Don’t forget to Meet Us At the Pond!!!
September 1, 2020 marked the beginning of our new fiscal year for Friends of Golden Pond. We experienced challenges due to the pandemic as well as some other things. We also grew to the point of our first board elections. In the midst of working through the process, the group received resignation letters from two members. This caused some restructuring and revamping of the way we run our business. We are happy to say that we have pulled together and have had much support from volunteers, donors and especially guests to keep us going. With that, our board of directors are happy to announce our official members. Please give welcome to Dawn Wolfhope as President, Tim Swan as Vice President, Ann Dunlavy as Treasurer, Paula Keefer as Secretary and Sharon Bloom and Melanie Robison as Board Members. This group has adapted an open-book philosophy with our business and are pooling our strengths for the benefit of the camp. We are committed to our original mission statement to make the camp assessible and affordable to youth and families alike and to ensure a unique outdoor experience. We whole-heartedly thank all who have helped us get this far. Without volunteers to help with the work, donors to help us financially and guests to give us income for operations and buying power, we would not be looking at purchasing the camp in the near future. We are also discussing many other changes and we would love to see more people come visit us at camp for more programming. We are very open to help and please feel free to contact us if you can help us in any way or even just to check on things or stay with us. Please feel free to send us your comments and pictures. With your permission, we would love to share your unique experience. Once again, we thank you all and we hope to keep providing a unique outdoor experience only found at Camp Golden Pond.
New Board 8/17/20
Please welcome our new board members: Dawn Wolfhope, Interim President, Tim Swan, Vice President, Ann Dunlavy, Treasurer, Paula Keefer, Interim Secrectary, Sharon Bloom, Board Member, and Melanie Robison, Board Member. We welcome you to come and meet us on September 20th from 4-6 pm at Golden Pond for a meet, greet and information session. We will be looking for volunteers to help us with various tasks. If you are interested, please come and visit or contact us.
Month of May
As we step into May and a new month of our new normal, we at Friends of Golden Pond dearly miss all of our beloved campers. Fortunately, the camp will be reopening to visitors within the next few weeks and we are working to develop virtual ways that we can engage with our friends and the youth who enjoy our programs. We are also excited to announce that this year we were able to qualify for the Centre Foundation’s annual donation drive, Centre Gives.
Virtual Mother’s Day Tea and Paint
This Mother’s Day, local artist Jackie Gianico will be live on the Friends of Golden Pond Facebook page to walk us through creating a beautiful, spring inspired, masterpiece.
This event is free, though we do encourage you to make a $10 dollar donation to Friends of Golden Pond.
Jackie can provide limited number of canvases for a porch pick-up in State College. Please contact us to make arrangements. We will also be posting recipes and preparation instructions for some of our favorite afternoon tea treats.
Last week, Governor Wolf announced that outdoor recreation is essential to our mental and physical health. Thus, we are happy to able to open up the camp to family households looking for a escape into nature. Over the next few weeks, dedicated volunteers will be heading out to the property to clean and prep the units to open for the season.
If your family is interested in a quiet get away in the woods, please check our AirBnb listings for availability. Note – we will be opening up units as our volunteers get them ready, so if you don’t see your preferred unit up yet, feel free to contact us and I can let you know when we have that unit scheduled to become available again.
To help with social distancing, cabins in the outer units will no longer be listed individually – instead our guests will reserve the entire cabin set so that groups are not sharing the common kitchen and toilet facilities. We will also be following the PA Department of Health guidelines and cutting the occupancy of all units by half. Groups are reminded that social distancing is still in effect – individuals must stay 6ft away from all non-household members, limit group size, and wear masks.
Our day-time use policy is that groups wishing to utilize the outdoor spaces of the camp for outdoor recreation may do so for free with a reservation. Please contact us to make arrangements so that we can ensure that your visit will not interfere with regular maintenance and scheduled rentals and will abide by the current government mandated regulations. Again, you must have a reservation to visit the camp even for day-time only use.
Friends of Golden Pond will be an eligible organization participating in Centre Gives 2020. Centre Foundation’s 36-hour online giving event is set to begin on May 12 at 9 am and conclude on May 13 at 9 pm. This annual event is designed to support the great work of local nonprofits serving Centre County.
Your donations through Centre Gives not only qualify Friends of Golden Pond for a larger share of the $200,000 stretch pool and $100,000 bonus pool, but also helps us qualify for $40,000 in additional prizes throughout the event. We will be providing more details on how you can help Friends of Golden Pond qualify for these additional grants as we move closer to the event.
Non-Medical Face Masks
As our state re-opens, most businesses will be requiring customers, volunteers, and employees to wear a face covering. Friends of Golden Pond is happy to be able to offer you a beautiful way to protect the people around you and support your favorite camp! These masks will be hand-made on-demand with our first print run starting on Friday (May 8). Click here for details.
Girl Scouts in the Heart of PA has announced that they will not be approving any troop or service unit travel applications through August 31. As a result of this announcement, we expect to loose a significant portion of our remaining summer bookings. So far, COVID-19 has cost the camp $17,553.06 in booking revenue with more cancellations expected. We are hopeful that we will be able to make up some of those losses with private family rentals as the camp calendar frees up.
While we are fortunate that our anonymous donor has decided to continue to help us pay our occupancy costs, the revenue loss we are seeing is going to be a serious setback to our ability to build our down payment and ultimately purchase the camp. The amount of bookings we have lost to COVID-19 represents over half of our projected rental income for the current fiscal year.
Despite all this, we are confident that we will be able to pivot and create new opportunities. Camp Golden Pond’s journey to long-term sustainability has already taken us on a whirlwind adventure to unexpected places, and while the path might not always be clear, we will get there. Two years ago, we set out with $0, no investors, and every sane person told us we were crazy. Now, we use the word visionary, we have found a number of unexpected friends, and we have sufficient capital that we are not worried about defaulting on any of our bills while we work through a statewide closure during our peak season.
We look forward to seeing visitors back at the camp soon!