GREETINGS FROM YOUR NEW CHAIR.
I think they voted me in at the last Steering Committee meeting when I stepped out of the room briefly. Here’s my State of the OH address. As you can see for yourself, we’re involved in a wide range of initiatives that reach back into the past and forward to the future, that address things as basic as maintaining our Cabin and as visionary as helping the Club plan a new hut system in Maine. We seek to build our own membership base while reaching out to likeminded groups beyond our roster, like the MMVSP, the Mt. Washington Observatory and AMC Trail Crew. It’s an exciting time to be involved, and we welcome as much of your participation as you care to share.
For starters, check out our wonderful website, created and hosted by OH Secretary Tom Kelleher: http://www.ohcroo.com. You’ll find croo rosters, a calendar of upcoming events, packloads of cool pics, a message board and more!
The Cabin is in great shape, thanks to the hard work of Caretaker Mike Waddell, wife Kristen, annual work parties headed by Dick and Bridgette Stetson and the generous financial support of many OH. We’re currently updating our insurance coverage and bringing some new trustees on board, with thanks to the outgoing trustees Sandy Saunders and Jack Middleton for eons of loyal service.
Our finances are in good shape, ably managed by our Treasurer John “Moose” Meserve who hopes to retire as soon as a suitable someone steps forward.
A few years back Ned and Sally Baldwin undertook the momentous task of scanning and archiving all those crusty, cracked croo photos hanging on hut walls. Digital reproductions are being printed, framed and hung in each hut. Greenleaf and Galehead are in the can (thanks to some help from the AMC and Jack Tracy) and Zealand is on deck for this summer. Folks with missing Zool croo photos listed on page 19 and cash to contribute should contact Sally at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
We can all be tremendously proud of the news that the OH managed to raise $2.6 million for the existing huts, educational programs and the development of a new chain of huts in Maine. OH Gerry Whiting is directing the Maine project, and it couldn’t be in better hands. Over 200 OH gave “early and often” to this monumental fundraising effort chaired by Andy McLane and Jim Hamilton and assisted by decade teams too numerous to mention with some excellent staff support at Joy Street.
Under the guidance of Doug Hotchkiss and Ned Baldwin, we continue to sponsor the Latchstring Award given annually to the hut croo that best exemplifies Joe Dodge’s philosophy of “mountain hospitality for all.” The OHA also helps the AMC nominate folks for the Joe Dodge Award which recognizes outstanding service to the Club. Recipients for 2003 were Special Members Earle and Ann Perkins who could write the book on volunteering for the Club. Although the award is open to any member of the 90,000 member-plus AMC, fully half of the recipients since 1988 have been OH.
For events, we’re throwing the Spring Brawl Reunion at the Cabin (May 17th), the Octoberfest Work Weekend at the Cabin (October 4th) and the Winter Reunion in Boston (late January, 2004). In addition to the regular activities above, the AMC has agreed to set aside Galehead exclusively for an OH night August 24th. Come check out the new digs.
Membership outreach has been on our agenda forever. With a little help from you all, we hope to bring more women and younger members into the fold. Any and all ideas welcome. We’ve recently co-sponsored activities with the Trail Crew, the Obs and the MMVSP and hope to continue this trend. Last but far from least, The Resuscitator, our beloved alumni rag, continues to tramp ever-onward with nary a limp or a crump, under the able 17-year-and-counting editorship of Jim Hamilton. Em Muldoon Kathan keeps heaping up a steady pile of Gormings, and a newly convened Editorial Board promises to keep new wellwritten, well-researched articles coming. The Board is Alex MacPhail, Chris Stewart, Al Koop, Nancy Bazilchuk living in Norway staffing our European Bureau and Peggles Dillon who is holding down the Washington Desk. We hope to enlist Martha Child Ash, 25 years in En Zed, as our first-ever Southern Hemisphere Correspondent.So you can see, we’re hardly splicing packropes and waiting for the weather to clear! Check the website ohcroo.com for our Steering Committee calendar and swing by. The food’s not bad, the beer is cold and we don’t even have to pack it in!