In recognition of CAMP Rehoboth’s 21st anniversary, we’re continuing our Volunteer Spotlight to honor many of the behind-the-scenes heroes that we’re so fortunate to have in our CAMP family. The Spotlight is an ongoing column in Letters and features recipients who’ve been selected by the volunteers themselves and you, our readers. If you know someone whose efforts are worthy of consideration, please make a nomination. We’ll be maintaining a database that will be used to help determine future recipients. Email us your suggestions.
Mary Beth Ramsey: It’s All About Family
A creative and beautiful soul by nature, Mary Beth Ramsey has been a self-employed artist and graphic designer. Residing in Washington, DC with her husband of 35 years, Bob, she does a wide variety of graphic design, including all of the Sundance invitation and auction graphics.
Mary Beth and Bob have two dogs, King Charles Cavalier Spaniels, Cyd and Gordon. As she puts it, “They are my adored babies—the joy of our lives.” When asked about additional information for this piece, she replied with a grin, “Talk to Murray, I’m sure he’ll have PLENTY to say about me!”
Why, you ask? CAMP Rehoboth was built upon the concept of family. Since its inception in 1990, its focus has been on working together to make this a positive and welcoming community with “room for all.” This story speaks to that tribute!
When/why did you start volunteering for CAMP?
I’ve been following my brother—older brother Murray—around my whole life. Murray (Archibald) and Steve (Elkins) founded CAMP Rehoboth, and I’ve been lucky enough to be involved from the beginning.
What’s been your best memory volunteering here?
It’s the many memories associated with Sundance. I always say it’s like a family reunion—I see people I don’t see any other time of the year. And it’s a time to remember those we loved who are no longer here with us.
What does CAMP Rehoboth mean to you?
I believe and support CAMP’s mission to “Create a More Positive,” inclusive community.
If you had an extra hour in the day, what would you do?
Read. Draw. Sleep.
If you could spend a full day with one person, who would it be? Why?
My husband, Bob, because we never get to spend a full, free day together, we both work too much.
“Wouldn’t you like to be a CAMPer too?” How would you encourage someone to get involved with us?
By telling them how much fun it is! By telling them it’s a great way to meet the nicest people. That’s exactly what’s happened to me.
More self-disclosure; please tell us a little known fact about you, until now that is.
Okay, here are two:
Number one, when Bob and I were in college, on our third date, out of the blue, I looked over at him and told him that my brother was gay and that if he wasn’t OK with it, we weren’t going to last. Bob’s response, “I’m a theatre major.” Enough said.
Number two, Murray taught me to walk in high heels when I was in the eighth grade. He’d make me parade back and forth across the living room until I got it right. He’s going to love seeing this!
First thought that comes to mind when you hear the word “Rehoboth.”
Room for all.
Assuming you have any, what else do you like to do in your spare time?
I’d spend more time making art.
Cher’s not the only one who’d like to turn back time. If you could, what age/period would you return too? Why?
My 30s, before gravity had its way with me.
We already know you love Rehoboth. Where’s your next favorite get-away and why?
I love the mountains of north Georgia. I grew up going to a family cabin there and it’s the one place that’s remained a constant through my entire life.
Someone reading this wants to buy you a “thank you” beverage. What would it be?
Anything that sparkles! Champagne, Prosecco, Cava, sparking Shiraz—I love anything that sparkles.
Friends are coming over for a dinner party? What’s your signature dish?
Whatever Bob’s making.
We’ve seen many iconic entertainers over the years. Who’s your favorite and why?
Audrey Hepburn—she was elegance and glamour personified!
As a kid, who was your first celebrity crush?
Rock Hudson! What can I say, I just love gay men.
Entertainment: Favorite TV show? Movie? Entertainer?
Favorite TV show: True Blood—it gets more and more outrageous every season. Favorite movie: Strictly Ballroom. Favorite entertainer: Lady Gaga, she’s so out there, it’s the fabulosity factor.
Sustenance: Favorite food? Beverage?
Once again, it’s whatever Bob’s making. Although, I’m particularly fond of his traditional southern Sunday dinner: ham, fried okra, cornbread with lots of butter, black eyed peas, and summer tomatoes.
In writing this column for nearly two seasons, I’ve said many times, it’s an absolute pleasure doing so because of what I learn about the wonderful people we feature. While I’ve not been around as long as many, I always look forward to a smile that melts whenever I’m lucky enough to be in your presence, Mary Beth.
Without even asking, I know how very much your brother and Steve, as well as your many friends here at CAMP, value you being family! And a word to Bob…the same goes for you, mister. Our sincere thanks!