Well, here we go again; welcome to the first issue of the twenty-third season of Letters from CAMP Rehoboth—and the twenty-third season of its parent organization CAMP Rehoboth! Our last issue of 2012 was published right before Thanksgiving, so between then and now a great deal has happened including: World AIDS Day, the Christmas Parade, the holidays, Starburst Gayla, the CAMP Chorus concert, and much more. Look for a sampling of them all in the first CAMPshots of the year—though I must say, we had so many shots from the holiday season, quite a lot of great photos never made it past the editing stage. Looking at CAMPshots reminds me to celebrate the great community we have here at the beach. Happy 2013 to one and all!
While we’re celebrating our great community, congratulations to the CAMP Rehoboth Chorus on the success of their winter concert, Broadway, Our Way, at Epworth United Methodist Church. The concert was a huge hit with the sold-out crowd. My apologies to all those who were not able to get tickets because the ones we had went so fast. There will be a second chance to see the show on Sunday, April 7, at 3 p.m. at Possum Hall in Georgetown. Tickets are on sale now, and may be purchased on the CAMP Rehoboth website or by calling the CAMP Rehoboth office.
On January 30 and 31, Equality Delaware conducted two important town hall meetings, one in Wilmington, and one at the CAMP Rehoboth Community Center. The meetings kicked off the drive to achieve full marriage equality in Delaware. Equality Delaware was instrumental in the passage of The Civil Union and Equality Act of 2011, and they are now taking the lead on marriage equality because the time is right to do so. We believe that a majority of Americans support same-sex marriage. Since Delaware adopted civil unions, New York has adopted marriage and DADT has been repealed. In the November election, voters in three states—including Maryland—approved marriage at the ballot box. Plus the constitutionality of DOMA is pending before the Supreme Court. To achieve marriage equality in the state will take another huge effort. To volunteer or to provide financial support, visit equalitydelaware.org. Phone banks are being set up in Wilmington, and at CAMP Rehoboth. The CAMP Rehoboth phone bank takes place every Tuesday evening from 6-9 p.m. Contact Chris Beagle or me if interested in participating.
One of the things we have not done well in Delaware is to provide discrimination protection for gender identity. That is also a goal of Equality Delaware in the coming months. At present, there is no gender identity protection in either the state’s hate crime or nondiscrimination legislation. More information about gender identity and the reason our transgender brothers and sisters are so in need of protection (47% have experienced adverse job issues), can also be found on the Equality Delaware website.
With April looming on the horizon, the time has come, once again, for the annual CAMP Rehoboth Women’s FEST, April 11-14. With four days of activities,performances, workshops, and parties, Women’s FEST has become one the most exciting Women’s events in the mid-Atlantic region. The 2013 FEST will feature out country music star Chely Wright, comedian Vickie Shaw, singer-songwriter Christine Havrilla and our own Viki Dee. The best way to enjoy Women’s FEST is to purchase a $65 FEST Pass. FEST Passes and tickets to all FEST events are on sale now on the CAMP Rehoboth website, or by calling the CAMP Rehoboth office.
Some of the hardest working and often unrecognized CAMP Rehoboth volunteers are members of our Board of Directors. As 2012 came to an end we said farewell and thank you to Beth Cohen and Howard Menaker on their retirement from the Board, and welcomed new Board members Bob Hoffer and Kathy Wiz.