Dear Timanous Family,
Greetings from Maine. While I'm reaching out today with an update on our planning for the 2020 summer, I first and foremost am hoping for continued health for you and your community. Like you, I’m adjusting to new routines, doing my part to stay healthy and support others while looking for signs of hope. I try to find and spread silver linings each day while also thinking of those who are sick and most directly at risk as they help others. Thoughts of Timanous do provide great comfort for me and I know the same is true for our extended community.
I have been in communication with our enrolled families for this upcoming summer regarding our response to the pandemic, including the possibility of camp being impacted. I know the summer continues to be a beacon of hope for all of us. As we hope and wait for the situation to improve, we are eyeing mid-May as the latest possible date to make a decision on the status of the summer. At the forefront of our decision making-process is the health and well-being of our campers, staff, camp families and our neighbors here in Maine as well as our very important role in supporting public health and the flattening of the curve. Our decision cannot be made only in the context of operating Timanous; we must also be good citizens and not contribute to the spread of COVID-19.
After just one summer at Timanous, it is clear to me how special our camp is. It brings out the best in all of us. I crave the magic of Timanous, especially during this time. With our hopes for camp also comes an obligation to be realistic about the prospects for camp this summer. Much would need to improve between now and the start of camp on June 25th for us to open camp as planned. We continue to monitor relevant information from state, federal and industry officials and leaders, as well as assess the effectiveness and feasibility of some potential new health operating protocols for camps. We are also aware of several other camps in New England that have recently announced plans for closure. We have much to weigh as we hold out hope and recognize our role in supporting public health.
In an effort to bring the light of Timanous into our daily lives, we’ve been regularly adding social media content to our Instagram and Facebook pages. Please follow us @camptimanous, share these posts with your Timanous community and know that we are exploring more creative ways to share the best of the Timanous spirit virtually. You can view one of my recent messages from Timanous below.
May we continue to be grateful for the many gifts Timanous has shared with us, both in person and now virtually. I look forward to keeping in touch.
Exciting news! We just mailed our first-ever Annual Report. This publication represents an impressive milestone in the history of our beloved Camp Timanous. Here we capture the "state of our camp" and recognize all who financially helped to ensure a smooth and strong transition from Dave and Linda's leadership to that of the nonprofit Timanous Foundation and Garth Altenburg's first year as Camp Director.
Hard copies will be arriving in mailboxes very soon, but you can read your advanced copy on our website.
Thanks to everyone who sent in an update for this year's Timanews. Lots of good things happening across the Timanous family, and we're excited for you to read it. Content includes:
You should be receiving your hard-copy version soon if you haven't already. Or, you can read it right now online:
As the leaves show their fall colors and the air turns crisp, we reflect on the success of the 2019 summer, the first for Timanous as a nonprofit. With the changing of the seasons comes the gradual awareness that, believe it or not, next summer’s preparations must begin now. While there is much to accomplish before Opening Day 2020, Director Garth Altenburg and the Board of Trustees are all looking forward to seeing the traditions of Timanous continue next summer, where campers will undoubtedly have a great experience filled with fun, friendships, and personal growth.
As a nonprofit, our mission is to focus not only on providing a camp life that has lasting value for every boy, but also to broaden access for more boys to be able to attend Timanous in the first place. We plan on gradually increasing the number of families receiving financial assistance over the next few years, and committing to support each boy’s entire camper career. This goal necessitates that we plan early for next summer—and each summer—because the funds we are able to raise directly impacts the number of boys to whom we can make this commitment.
Planning for Summer 2020
A core element of this growth will be supported by the Sandy Tattersall Fund endowment. Thanks to the incredible support of the entire Timanous community, this fund now stands at $1,000,000 in total donations and pledges. We are all truly grateful for the generosity of everyone who contributed toward this effort. In order for Sandy’s Fund to provide a steady source of funding in perpetuity, the majority of the fund will remain invested, such that it will cover only part of our commitments each year. This leaves us with the need to have an annual appeal for next summer, much like we’ve done for years under the Al Furniss Fund. We’ve decided to call this effort the Annual Fund for Camperships.
Our objective for next summer is to have approximately 15% of campers receiving some level of financial aid. This translates to allocating approximately $145,000 of funding in the 2020 budget. With a modest draw from the Sandy’s Fund endowment, a total of $115,000 needs to be raised through an annual appeal. We are pleased to say that several individuals have already contributed generously to this effort. This is a solid start, but honestly we need your support this fall so that we can make plans for next summer.
The Annual Fund for Camperships
Your gift toward this $115,000 goal will directly fund 2020 camper scholarships, or as we are now calling them, camperships. This may be a new term for all of us, but it’s used by many camps—and the American Camping Association—as it has a simple definition: a campership is financial aid given to a family so their child can attend camp.
Timanous has always been a place where boys can learn to live well together, no matter their different backgrounds outside of camp. Eight year old Mallards from different countries and speaking different languages at home all work together to clean their cabin; a Heron who likes basketball eats his meals next to a Crow who enjoys reading; we all link arms in a circle at the close of Council Fire to recite the Timanous Prayer. Campers all wear the same uniforms, listen to stories by lantern-light in the same rustic wooden cabins, and face the same challenges in spending a summer away from home.
We have an opportunity to share this nurturing environment with an even greater diversity of backgrounds and experiences among our camper group. We also have a responsibility to broaden the representation of our community through our campership program. We are committed to maintaining the value Timanous has always provided and to ensuring everyone can benefit from understanding and appreciating a greater level of diversity.
Please give as generously as you can to help ensure that all boys get the assistance they need to come to Timanous in 2020. If you have given to the Al Furniss Fund in past years, the Annual Fund for Camperships plays the same role: to financially assist families in sending their sons to Timanous for the upcoming summer. Each and every donation helps in this effort, whether it’s a full or half-session campership or any other gift amount you are able to make. Help us make a difference in the lives of deserving boys. Donate online here.
Reasons to Give:
For parents: give in honor of your son’s cabin or favorite counselor, or to help another boy have the same opportunities as your son had.
For alumni: give in honor of your cabinmates or fellow counselors, and for the things your learned going to Timanous.
For friends and supporters: help more boys gain from the camp experience, and so that Timanous can better represent the diversity of the broader world.
The Timanous spirit is as strong as ever, and it was another amazing summer for the group of happy boys who lived on the shores of Panther Pond. After a rainy opening day, there was abundant sunshine, and the heat wave that lingered was just fine having the lake to cool off in during the day. Throughout all seven weeks, campers had tons of fun— and learned new skills—at activities like swimming, riflery, archery, sailing, soccer, and more. They tested themselves and experienced the beautiful and rugged nature of remote spaces all across Maine on camping trips. They learned to live under one roof with others, and bonded with old and new friends. In short, it was a typically fantastic summer at Timanous.
For many, 2019 was an exciting milestone in the history of our camp, with the changes in leadership and the first summer operating as a nonprofit foundation. Garth Altenburg thrived in his first year as Director. He was constantly learning about Timanous ways and traditions and openly and warmly embraced by the camp community. Dave and Linda Suitor were there every step of the way, supporting Garth and the whole camp with their vast experience and deep connection to all things Timanous.
The meaningful traditions we all know and love carried on: Council Fire and Chapel, restful evenings in the cabins with stories told by lantern light, and walking down the wooded bunkline path with a friend. We also held our first ever Culture Day, where we celebrated the many different backgrounds represented here at camp, which will hopefully become a new tradition. Each meal in the barn featured cuisine from a different country, with flags hanging from the rafters. The annual Talent Show that night included many campers performing songs and skits that offered glimpses into their cultural backgrounds.
When we posted the story of Culture Day with this photo on Facebook, a recent camper and counselor responded: “AMAZING initiative!!! So glad to hear of what camp is doing these days!” This idea resonated with earlier eras as well, with an alum from the ‘80s commenting, “What an awesome idea. I remember well my friends from Colombia, Italy and Venezuela in my years at Timanous. Would have been great to learn more about their cultures at the time.” The whole day served as an opportunity for campers and counselors alike to appreciate one of the elements of the diversity here at Timanous, while still recognizing that we’re all here together as one cohesive community.
Tattersall Fund Update
We are committed to doing more to increase the focus of diversity, equity and inclusion here at Timanous. As a nonprofit foundation, one key objective is to grow our financial aid capacity in order to provide a summer camp experience for boys who wouldn’t otherwise have such an opportunity.
We also believe Sandy would be pleased (and maybe even a little proud) that the financial aid fund that now bears his name has been so generously supported by the extended Timanous community. Indeed, we believe he would be very satisfied to learn that, as of this July, the fund has received over $1 million in donations and pledges! Who would have thought a few short years ago that our alumni and parents would be able to raise enough capital not only to purchase the camp, but also to create a million dollar endowment for our financial aid program. We should all feel extremely gratified to have reached this amazing moment in Timanous history! Thank you to all of the people who so generously supported camp in reaching both of these milestones.
While the entire Timanous family should be proud of the commitment to growing Sandy’s Fund, we also want to make sure to recognize all of the boys who were able to attend camp through financial assistance provided in past years, as well as this one. We’re grateful for the ability to give the gift of the Timanous experience to all these boys; just as importantly, camp as a whole gained so much from the presence of these boys, who contributed so much to the fabric of our community.
An Annual Fund for Financial Aid
Second Century Campaign Update
As we look ahead to summer 2020—our second season as a nonprofit—we will ensure that our financial aid capacity matches our mission to serve even more of these boys and their families. As a solid foundation, we have a $1 million endowment that is earmarked to provide income in perpetuity. We can now turn our attention to an annual appeal to raise the additional funds needed for 2020 financial aid commitments. Given the wonderful track record of annual support from the hundreds of supporters to the Timanous financial aid program, we are hopeful that the Timanous family will continue this tradition. We look forward to sharing details of our Annual Fund program in our next newsletter.
The Power of Continuity
Recognizing Long-Standing Staff Service
One of the most important ingredients of a Timanous summer has been the ongoing and impressive continuity the counseling staff has maintained. This summer was yet another example of this, with exceptional counselors who possessed tangible passion for Timanous and a clear concern for the boys under their supervision.
At the Banquet ceremony on the final day of camp, one of the most striking symbols of this demonstrably strong counselor loyalty was evident when Garth, Dave and Linda awarded service medals to staff members who have achieved a significant milestone in the number of summers each has been at camp.
The value of a dedicated staff is clear to everyone. After a post this summer about the creativity and energy of the counselors, a parent commented, “My son was a camper and is now a counselor. I love how it pushes him to always set a good example because those little eyes are always watching.” In the eyes of an alum, the counselors serve as the “heartbeat of the camp,” and are the ones that make “the campers and their Timanous experiences so special. Those summers I spent in Raymond, Maine are very special to me.”
Thank you to all of the counselors who made 2019 special for the campers. We’re sure that most counselors will return again next year. Thank you to all of the families who shared your sons with us this summer. Most of all, thank you to the boys in green and gray who make Timanous hum with energy, growth, and joy. See you in 2020!