by Pam Stevens of the Camp Noel Porter Board of Directors
Camp Noel Porter, located in Tahoe City and owned by the Episcopal Diocese of Northern California, hosted a Cinco de Mayo festival for friends and families at Trinity Cathedral on Saturday evening, May 5th. Cinco de Mayo, the American celebration of Mexican heritage and pride, was the theme of an event to raise awareness and support in the diocese for the mission served by Camp Noel Porter summer camps and retreats.
Remarks made by Camp Noel Porter’s Executive Director, the Reverend Jenni Liem, were focused on the pride of ownership supporters have for the camp, noting that “this is our own Camp Noel Porter. It belongs to us, as part of the mission of this diocese. It has a special place in our hearts. And we have a responsibility with that ownership to pass it on. We have a specific focus at this point on the retreat facilities, which are in need of some repairs so that we can host more year-round retreats.” Before leading the group in a blessing, she added “Camp Noel Porter gives. And we are so thankful that you are here, giving back. “
John Dedo, President of the Camp Noel Porter Board of Directors, thanked participants in the event for their active involvement. Some in attendance were former campers and counselors; some were parents of campers and counselors; some are parish members who have become familiar with the mission and have become supporters. In fact, the popular silent auction and raffle at the event indicated the level of support for the Camp Noel Porter mission throughout the diocese. The goal was to raise $5,000 for Camp Noel Porter, and the event raised over $7,000.
Some of the higher-priced items sold at the silent auction were appetizers for six at the home of the Right Reverend Barry L. Beisner, and a gourmet meal prepared by the Reverend Canon Britt Olson. “It means so much to us to have this level of support, because the camp is connected to the diocese, and its mission is an extension of that of the diocese,” commented Camp Noel Porter Board member Janice Freeberg, who led the silent auction effort.
Diocesan support for the mission of Camp Noel Porter extends also to congregational leadership and to families within churches. “Our kids love Camp Noel Porter, and will be attending summer camp again this year,” noted Denise Pyburn, who was at the event with her daughter Desiree and several other families from her parish, St. John’s, Roseville.
John Dedo noted that “We are so blessed to have a strong Board of Directors and a strong support network, and that is a credit to the great work that the camp has done over the years. These are people with life-long connections to their parishes, to the diocese, and to the Episcopal Church, all because of their experiences at Camp Noel Porter.”
Camp Noel Porter supporters, always an energetic and spirited group, were entertained by live music played by an accordionist that inspired in a conga line around the tables. There were piñatas for two age groups of camper-age kids, and an all-you-can-eat taco bar. A “souvenir stand” featured items to help attendees participate in the event theme with everything from sombreros to mustaches. Sara Freeberg, 19, who has attended Camp Noel Porter summer camp and worked as a counselor, summed up the event well. “This is great. It feels like Camp Noel Porter here tonight.”
Click here to view photos from the celebration.
ABOUT CAMP NOEL PORTER:
Camp Noel Porter, also known as Noel Porter Camp and Retreat Center, is located in Tahoe City, California. The camp is a ministry of the Episcopal Diocese of Northern California that takes its mission from the diocesan mission to nurture the spiritual growth of all God’s people by providing a summer youth camp program and seasonal retreat facilities.
Tue, May 8, 2012
by Thea Mangels filed under