With this issue of Letters from CAMP Rehoboth we return to our biweekly publishing schedule, so look for a new issue every other Friday from now until September. Though our workload doubles in the summertime, I still look forward to the high season in Rehoboth Beach—especially after this very long, cold winter—and to seeing our seasonal friends as they return to town for Summer 2014.
On April 5, in preparation for the summer season, I participated again in the diversity training I do every year for the Rehoboth Police. Each year, it seems, the young summer officers are more and more engaged in the discussion, and I was impressed this year by their questions, and by the racial and gender diversity within the group. Both Chief Banks and Detective Sullivan provided a great introduction for me and for CAMP Rehoboth, and I continue to be grateful to their commitment to truly make this community a place with room for all. Sadly, not long ago I received a letter from someone who had experienced racial prejudice in our town—not from the police, I should say, but from a local business—and it reminded me that creating a welcoming community for all is a never-ending process.
Speaking of welcoming, transgendered members of our community are too often misunderstood by gay and straight alike. On May 22 (5:30-7 p.m.), Equality Delaware, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Delaware and the United Way of Delaware Pride Council are co-sponsoring Transgender 101, an educational event that promises to teach us all how to be a better ally to our transgender friends, family, and community. The event will take place in Wilmington at the First and Central Presbyterian Church at 1101 N. Market Street. A similar event is being planned for Rehoboth Beach at a later date.
The first big CAMP Rehoboth event of the summer season is the return of the Black and White Beach Ball on May 31. This year the event is being revamped to give it a brand new vibe, and will take place for the first time at the CAMP Rehoboth Community Center. DJ Jimmy DePre will be on hand, spinning some cool summer music, and there will be dancing in the house, I’m sure. The HeART of the Community Art Auction has been a part of the B&W Ball for years, and that tradition continues, though this year it will include a smaller live auction than in the past, as well as a newly added silent auction. All art may be previewed at CAMP Rehoboth beginning on Memorial Day weekend, when we will begin accepting early bids on the art. Our official CAMP Rehoboth auctioneer, Lorne Crawford, returns for the event. Dress for the Beach Ball is black and white casual or black and white costumes. Tickets are $60 per person (and yes, I know that’s not what it said in the last issue, but this is the correct price), and are available on the CAMP Rehoboth website or by calling the CAMP Rehoboth office at 302-227-5620. Tickets are limited, so purchase early!
On Saturday, May 26 we celebrated all of our CAMP Rehoboth volunteers at the Volunteer Appreciation Party at CAMP Rehoboth. At that event, we thanked all our volunteers; now let me say “thank you” to the Volunteer Committee (who are also volunteers), and are the ones responsible—along with our volunteer sponsor, Fairway Mortgage, and Dos Locos restaurant—for making the Volunteer Appreciation Party such a fun event. For more on our volunteers, see CAMP Matters in this issue.
We are very fortunate to live in a town with such a multitude of great restaurants, but before them all, there was The Back Porch Café. This year the award winning Back Porch celebrates its 40th anniversary as a Rehoboth Beach culinary landmark. Looking back over all the years we’ve spent in Rehoboth Beach, I can’t count the number of birthdays we’ve celebrated there! Congratulations to Marilyn, Keith, and all the staff on this great occasion.