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What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55889 10/07/01 08:35 PM
Joined: Dec 1969
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JJ Offline OP
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I just got back home, unpacked the car, and had to check out the forums. The Reunion was GREAT! Lots of surprises including a mini of Seven Foot Knoll at dinner last night. There was a very spirited auction at Brunch this morning with lots of money raised for charity. Younger and Associates treated us very well for the entire event and Bill, Nancy, Kim, Harry, Maureen, KB and the entire crew put on a wonderful event! What does everyone else think?
Jim
Johnson

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55890 10/07/01 09:10 PM
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Bob M Offline
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Hi everybody! ... I just got home from the reunion after eight hours on the road. The reunion was a fabulous time! I'll have more to post tomorrow when I'm not quite so tired. Early to bed (my own) tonight.

I hope all the attendees check in at this topic when they arrive home.

Bob

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55891 10/07/01 09:15 PM
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Larry Offline
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Those of us who couldn't go have no idea what to think, since all we were fed was 3 little pictures from opening night. Even though we were promised daily updates....oh well....we didn't miss you either!



[This message has been edited by Larry (edited 10-07-2001).]

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55892 10/07/01 09:42 PM
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Chesapeake Bryan Offline
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Hi everyone. I got home a little while ago. This is the first chance I've had to check the forums since getting back.

The reunion was a fun time had by all. It was great to finally put faces to the names I have been communicating with through the forums/ weekly chats.

I'll post some more on the reunion tomorrow, it has been quite an exhausting day for me.

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55893 10/07/01 11:07 PM
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bright eyes Offline
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Herm and I just arrived home after leaving the reunion at 11:30 am, on a flight from Baltimore to Chicago, to Traverse City, Mi. and the 70 minutes drive home. What a fabulous time we had at the reunion. Met many "connected collectors", and renewed many friendships that we have made since attending the first and second reunions! The whole Harbour Lights Crew put together a first class event!

Thank you to all!

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55894 10/08/01 12:15 AM
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Laurie Offline
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I arrived at home just before 1PM, after a 35 minute drive home. This was my first reunion and I had a fabulous time. I went by myself, not knowing anyone and had some nervousness about how I would fit in. I needn't have worried. I met some wonderful people, and there were almost continuous activities. I had to make three trips to the car just to pack all the loot I received. Every time you turned around, the Harbour Lights folks were giving you something more. The inventory would fill a page. I couldn't believe my incredible luck when they called my name for the opportunity drawing this morning. And what I had lusted after was still available: a lighthouse bulb from the Cabo Busto Lighthouse in Spain that was brought back by Nancy Younger. It's huge, at least a foot long and very cool to own. At least I think so. Anyway, since this was my first reunion, I have nothing to compare against, but I think it was tops.

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55895 10/08/01 01:00 AM
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Hey everyone! I'm so glad you are returning home safely and especially happy to hear you had a great time. Of course, I had no doubt about that. I'm still in NYC and expect to be here another week. I look forward to seeing some photos from the activities, but also realize that time isn't exactly a luxury as you have been kept very busy with all the great activities HL had scheduled. Again, welcome home... you have been missed!

Tim - Keeping the flame lit...

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55896 10/08/01 08:59 AM
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Bob M Offline
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Hi Gang! ...I got up about two hours ago after enjoying a good-night's sleep in our own bed. Lorna and I had a fabulous time at the reunion and met many new friends. We got to talk with many of the reunion attendees during the various events, dinners, and on the cruise on the Chesapeake, and that is a wonderful thing.

The Crew from HL worked their "butts" off to provide such a memorable experience for their collectors. I just can't imagine the preparation to accomplish such a world class reunion. A tip of the Captain's hat and a salute is definitely owed to the HL Crew. A very big "THANK YOU" is also owed to the many collectors who assisted the HL Crew during the reunion. Their hearts are bigger than any of us could imagine!

I'm sure there will be hundreds of posts about the reunion coming within the next few weeks. I feel very privileged to have attended, and that is why I was willing to spend the better part of a Saturday, many months ago, dialing the telephone over 700 times. Persistence does pay off.

More info to be posted later...and that's the word from the East Coast where my thermometer registered a very cool 32 degrees under a pre-dawn clear sky. That's about 50 degrees cooler that the temps in Baltimore for the first few days there.

Bob

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55897 10/08/01 09:43 AM
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Larry Offline
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I was joking Paul (see the smileys?). I'm sure you all had a wonderful time. I know the weather actually worked out well (living here, as I do). The board was just a lonely place with everyone gone.

Looking back at the itenarary that was posted earlier, I know that no one had time to post anything and I do thank you for the pics that you did post, especially your trip to the reunion.

I, for one, and I'm sure others, look forward to this thread being a LONG one.....with lots of pictures.

I'm sorry if I offended anyone. That was not my intent.

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55898 10/08/01 10:07 AM
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cclighthousebuff Offline
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I'm back on the Cape and my brother-in-law has returned to Arizona after a wonderful reunion. Aside from the "crew's" attention to every detail, I was amazed at the level of elegance! Almost 900 people treated as if we were simply a party of four! It was unbelievable.

The activities and gifts were "over the top". I am very appreciative...and as a member of the law enforcement community, humbled by your display of sincere appreciation for those lost and their families.

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55899 10/08/01 12:08 PM
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What an awesome time we had! We arrived home at 10:00 p.m. totally exhausted. Today I'm barely functioning in my classroom The Youngers went all out as usual.

The cruise was fantastic - games, prizes, excellent narrator, unbelievable lunch, music, fellowship with collectors.

Our Hooper Strait reunion exclusive was over the top. Non-attendees will definitely want this piece. What a surpise to lift off the styrofoam top to discover that our Hooper Strait has a removable roof (where Bill put his signature) and tiny little rooms inside the lighthouse with furniture. This tops all the other lighthouses that Harbour Lights has produced.

Thumbnails, minis, Hooper Strait picture by Mark Sherman, keychain, duffle bag etc, etc.
were just some of the other "extra" goodies we received.

Another terrific surpise, for those of us that have attended all three reunions, was the clock we received at check in. We were greeted with a vocal "ding", "ding", "ding" and presented with a wall clock with a picture of Hooper Strait on it.

And what about those meals. We all left several pounds heavier!

There is so much to write about.... My lunch hour is over and the students are coming back in.

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55900 10/08/01 12:52 PM
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Henry Offline
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Hi All, we had a great time at the reunion, I never thought the Youngers could top the past two but they did! the past 4 days had been great untill I returned home to a horrific sight. one of the shelves on my dining room wall came down with 8 of my Harbour lights on it(YUP rubble all over the floor) only one survived without a scratch (Port Sanilac). The 7 lost were Boston Harbour (glow), Cockspur Island,Cold Spring Harbor, St.Simons Island (glow), Whaleback and Morris Island then and now. Now I have to try to replace all of these. Wish me luck in my hunt! The only good news is that now I have room for the lighthouses I brought home from the reunion. It was nice to have spent time with so many nice people, cant wait to do it a fourth time.

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55901 10/09/01 01:46 AM
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mombo Offline
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So sorry to read about your misfortune Henry. Sure hope you had them insured but yes, in the mean time, you have those new Reunion pieces to fill the void.

What a super event! This was my first Reunion and only now can I appreciate how great they are. I can't even begin to imagine the planning and effort that was required to make this such an enjoyable time for all of us. Heartfelt thanks go out to everyone involved - Bill, Nancy and the entire HL "Crew" - all others who contributed their time and talents, many from right here in the collector forums - those collector club members who manned their booths and helped during registration and various activities. Many collectors gave up much of their reunion time for the benefit of the rest. Saying thank you just doesn't seem enough.

While lots of folks thought and still think that a Reunion on the Great Lakes would be way cool, last weekend in Baltimore just couldn't be beat. (And yes it would have been "way cool" last week-end in the GL, lol!) The Inner Harbor location was so nice, especially for me as I'd never been there. Lots to see and do and the hotel was super, the location fabulous and what a view from my room! Sipping morning coffee while overlooking the harbor while it still slept was marvelous. And the beds! Usually one can't wait to get home to one's own bed but not this time. These were like sleeping on a cloud. Then after dark when all the lights were twinkling and the stadium lights were on we could at least observe from a distance what we could only watch on TV - a truly historic event as Cal Ripkin completed his career.

On Friday morning we observed the U.S. Constellation as she left port for the first time in over 30 years to make the short journey to the Fells Point area. And a bit later in the day we met the Coast Guard training ship Eagle as she passed our Cruise boat heading for the Inner Harbor where she docked and opened for tours.

Of course the best part of the Reunion was the opportunity to meet with each other. While not quite being able to catch up with each and every one of the "Connected Collectors" it wasn't for lack of trying! For those of you whom I accosted more than once while grabbing your badge and asking, "Have I met you yet?" I appologize! Hopefully some of the non-connected will soon join our ranks - they were especially impressed by Dave's classy badges!

Leaving on Sunday was a hectic, hurried affair as those heading out via the highways and skyways jostled with those remaining who were to board the tour buses for yet another lighthouse trip. During the shuttle ride to the airport we traveled through a sea of Ravens fans as they anxiously awaited the beginning of their game. Purple was everywhere.

Yet one more piece of history unfolded before this joyful weekend was to end. While waiting at a lounge in the airport the news reached those present of the attacks on Afghanistan. I had just sat down in the neighbooring Burger King which was divided from the lounge by a mostly glass partition. The lounge was filling quickly as those walking the hallway were each in turn drawn to the TV that was tuned to CNN. As I observed the emotion on the many faces it was evident what what happening. Taking my tray to the lounge my suspicions were confirmed. While this was a sad ending to a wonderful weekend it was truly heartening to observe that those who appeared most interested and concerned were the young faces in the crowd. While everyone has been affected in some way by the events of the past month and most have strong feelings regarding them, this is no doubt a war of the new generation.

After a half-hour delay due to a mechanical problem my flight finally took off at 5:30pm. Flying at 14,000 feet with the sun on my face and the fluffy white clouds at our feet I couldn't help but wonder at the beauty of the skys as I recalled the happier events of the weekend while remembering those on a certain four previous flights as their daydreams turned into tragedy.

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55902 10/09/01 07:31 AM
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Nana Offline
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One phrase comes to me as I try and express myself about the reunion. "I had the time of my life, and I owe it all to Harbour Lights".

Like Sue, this was my first reunion. Having a great time was a given, as HL always strives and does a "first-class" job. But, I had no idea just what a memorable week it would truly be.

A group of us began on Sunday, Sept. 30th. Several from the Tampa HL club were gracious and met me at the BWI airport. We traveled to Havre' de Grace for a tour of Concord Point and then a great meal together. (See photo in Paul's journey's.) On Monday, 6 of that group went out on the choppy Chesapeake and saw many lights. Tuesday was a trip out to Cape Charles and a great climb up Assateague.

Arriving in Baltimore and seeing friends from both Tampa and from these Forums was like going to a "Family Reunion". Getting checked in was a bit worrisome, but the hotel was a great place to be with lots and lots of room for all attending. Sue, the beds were great!

Harbour Lights planned and presented us with a wonderful event from Thursday to Sunday. No detail was left for us to worry with and we were lavished with great gifts and opportunities to share our love of lighthouses. The total amount raised for restoration and New York thru the opportunity drawing alone was stupendous. The auction that brought in much more on Sunday was unbeliveable.

The opportunity to share with other collectors, the serious restoration work that our different clubs are involved with was fun, educational, and profitable. So many collectors who came by the Tampa booth, had no idea where Anclote Key was located, but walked away commenting on our efforts and happy to see what the club is trying to accomplish.

Thankfully, most SWA flights were leaving on time and I arrived home by 9:30. Memories of the week were dancing in my head and my heart was full. Beautiful people having a great time is always memorable. My body was exhausted, sleep came quickly. But, you know what? I'm ready to go again.

Harbour Lights continues to amaze me! Thanks for everything Bill, Nancy, Kim, Maureen, "KB", Harry, and all the crew that worked "your buns off" to help the 830 attending to "have the time of their life". You know that I love you all!

Derith

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55903 10/09/01 10:05 AM
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CONESTOGA EMT Offline
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My wife and I had A great time. I only Wish that we could do this more often... It was nice to meet new and old friends and to have such a wonderful time. see you all at the next reunion!!

GOD BELSS AMERICA.... THE HOME OF THE FREE AND THE BRAVE.

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55904 10/09/01 01:42 PM
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Rhonda Offline
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This was also my first reunion. It was one of the best times in my life so far!!!!Everything was better than first class and I'm still in awe. I think the best part for me was how Bill & Nancy took the time to talk to each and everyone every day I truly felt like I was at a family reunion.
p.s. Hi Laurie!!!

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55905 10/09/01 02:04 PM
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Al Offline
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My wife and I had a wonderful experience! Even having our flight home cancelled and having to leave for home a day late did not
put a damper on the wonderful experience at
the reunion. I could not believe all the
give-away items. Our luggage was stuffed.
We met some very nice folks from all over the country and that was an extra bonus. Hey
let's eat! It'll be days before I can eat normal again. I'm still stuffed with great food. To Bill and Nancy, Kim and all the other wonderful Harbour Lights staff, THANK
YOU for what had to be a tremendous effort to arrange for this kind of event. God Bless
you for your all your hard work and making
the event so special for all of us.

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55906 10/09/01 03:23 PM
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Rich Offline
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This was my first Reunion, also. I am now looking forward to the next one. The hospitality of the Youngers and the "Crew" was great. Everyone I met was so friendly and helpful. It was good to meet St. John and I throughly enjoyed Paul's seminar on Lighthouse Photography. Talking with all the club members at their booths was fun, too. It was a great experience and I will enjoy the memories again when I get all the pictures developed. THANKS HARBOUR LIGHTS!

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55907 10/09/01 07:10 PM
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DocJ44 Offline
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I had a great time meeting other collectors and trying especially hard to connect with people in my neck of the woods to discuss mustering up a collector's club in the Pittsburgh area (I didn't get a chance to meet Barbara Kemple though...but I will be emailing you). But its impossible to meet everyone. I met a lot of supernice unconnected people on the cruise and at meals and encouraged them to give the forums here a try.

Personal highlights of the Weekend:

Winning a LLOM Point Arena in a music trivia game on the cruise...and getting a "tattoo" of Cape Hatteras on-the-move on my forehead.

The Seahorse exhibit at the Aquarium...weren't those Sea Dragons cool?

The tension during the auctions and drawings. (I was especially excited to see Laurie get the light bulb and the Marsden's from MD win the Hooper Straight water color).

But the best event of all was the Delmarva lighthouse tour yesterday. The original plans had to be altered but the replacements were outstanding. John (and he certainly more than lived up to his saintly title) did a superb job in organizing the tour...Mispillon was my favorite. A sad looking light in its current state but with some fixing up it would be beautiful. If I find some time I need to check into some details about that light.




[This message has been edited by DocJ44 (edited 10-09-2001).]


Doc John
Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55908 10/10/01 12:15 AM
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DeDo Offline
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Well, our first ever HL Reunion is over. When I made the reservations almost a year ago I was hesitant & not quite sure what to expect. We had potential child care problems and I had a husband who is definitely NOT a collector but who likes lighthousing but certainly not with my fervor.

We are both very glad we made the trip! My husband thoroughly enjoyed every aspect of the Reunion, from the accomodations, food, activities and the people! Having him enjoy it so much made it even more special for me. We could not believe the way the Youngers made everyone feel so welcome. The goodies, the pictures, the HLs. No detail was overlooked.

Wayne & I had much fun at the Sunday brunch, auctions & drawings. We didn't have any luck but so enjoyed everyone else winning. An example of the way lighthouse people are was Friday night. There were five HLs as a centerpiece. Each of the ten people at the table was given a number & the five given away. As luck would have it, neither of us had a lucky number. However, one of the persons at our table that won the Point Allerton turned & asked if we had the piece (we didn't) and gave it to us! I couldn't believe it! It made us feel just as lucky as the Sunday winners!

If I had any regrets, it was that I didn't meet as many people from the Forums as I would have liked, even with the Connected Collector badges. I know there were people too, from our post card exchange that I would have loved to meet. But when you look at the room filled with 800+ people, you know that you will never see/talk to everyone.

The other regret is that we couldn't take any extra days to visit other lighthouses. Those separate trips sounded like a lot of fun. But with a teenager at home, we wanted to keep the days away from home to a minimum. Maybe next Reunion we could spend more time.

All in all, we BOTH had a super time and would do it again in a heartbeat. Many thanks to the wonderful Younger family and their dedicated staff! You made all of us feel special!

Donna & Wayne

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55909 10/10/01 09:21 AM
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Pat PalmerBall Offline
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WOW!!!! What a great time we all had. Starting with the Lighthouse Tours John planned right through the Reunion itself. It was truly more than I had expected. This entire trip was a surprise to my husband Hunt and after it was all over he told me that more surprises like this would be wonderful.
We made so many new friends. I just can't put into words the atmosphere... electric, energetic. It was so much fun being able to associate a name from the forums and now a face.
And all the Lighthouse clubs that were there displaying their work on preserving our history was just great. Thanks to them for allowing us to help in their efforts.
As someone else stated earlier, Harbour Lights did a First Class Job with all at the Reunion. I know from reading about the past Reunions there were items given away but we received something every day....and sometimes twice a day. I am still trying to put everything in order.
This was our first Reunion and it will definately not be our last (no matter where it happens).

KYKEEPER - Pat

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55910 10/10/01 09:33 AM
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rscroope Offline
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WOW! Thank you! Tired. Head still spinning!
Pre- and post- lighthousing provided by John, Paul and Sean. Jam packed first class reunion by the Youngers. Room on the 25th floor overlooking at 7 ft Knoll and the Harbor! Forum members everywhere! I did not get to meet Bob M. until after Sunday brunch. Those collectors I met where great; those I missed - well there where 900+.
- Bob & Mary Ann


LONG ISLAND BOB
Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55911 10/10/01 11:27 AM
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AZlightkeeper Offline
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Awesome, simply Awesome!!! It was incredible. Bill, Nancy, Kim and the rest of the Harbour Lights crew deserve a round of applause. The food and activities were great, and Baltimore was beautiful!! I just want to say thanks for an incredible time!!!


Jim
Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55912 10/10/01 07:09 PM
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Digger Offline
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Truly a GREAT time as mentioned over and over above, better than I ever imagined. I really don't have a favorite memory, it was ALL fantastic. It was wondeful seeing old friends and meeting many new ones. I just wish I would have had more time to spend visiting with everyone, I didn't know if I was coming or going the entire weekend! I wanted to try to say goodbye to everyone but that was just impossible with the rush to get out. Anyways, thanks everyone for all the nice compliments and encouragement it really meant the world to me. In the rush to leave I even forgot to grab the sign that was above my display. I really wanted that to hang on my wall as a momento.

It sure was nice to get out of that Baltimore traffic around the stadium. I even made a wrong turn and ended up driving down railroad tracks (that explains the lack of traffic) until several very angry officers "gently whispered" to me where to get my car. And also the wrong turn, right into the stadium entrance!!! A quick u-turn, more gentle words from police and finally on my way out of the city! What a HOOT!!

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55913 10/10/01 07:55 PM
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Hello,
We just arrived home happy, tired and exhausted Our time in Baltimore was wonderful. This is our second reunion and we can't wait for the third. I would like to say THANK YOU to John, Paul and Sean for all the extra tours that they hosted. I loved all the tours the best. I personally liked the Rhode Island Reunion better because the lighthouses were closer together and we got to see more with Harbour Lights. I wish our boat cruise could of come a little closer to the lights they took us too for better pictures. It was really a pleasure to meet the Connected Collectors in person. Hello Rip, Nana, Betty O, Mombo, Gail, Ladybug, John C and Sean. We also made many new friends with whom we exchanged addresses and phone numbers to keep in touch with. All the attendees were very nice and friendly. I was really sad the day we were leaving. The hotel had some problems but handled them well. A big thank you to all the Harbour Lights Crew! We can't wait to attend your next one. Hopefully the next reunion will be soon.

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55914 10/10/01 10:11 PM
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WisKeeper Offline
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I am not home yet, I am in Washington D.C. Yesterday, October 9th, Gail and I visited Fort Washington Light and Jones Point Light on the Potomic River. We even ran into a couple from the Harbour Lights reunion at Fort Washington! The reunion was great and so were the bus trips!

Suzanne


Suzanne Murphy
President, Wisconsin Lighthouse District (WILD)
Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55915 10/11/01 12:38 PM
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LADYBUG Offline
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We had a very good time at the reunion and I enjoyed meeting many of you face to face. The "goodies" were excellent, probably the best of the three reunions. It was nice to be recognized as a 3 time attendee with a special gift. Sure glad I had the extra suitcase with me. The hotel staff we dealt with was very warm, friendly and helpful. The meals though left something to be desired. Buffet breakfasts were okay but no fruit; Sunday's breakfast was questionnable--no alternative for those who don't eat eggs, my potatoes were "hashwhites" and undercooked...lots of poultry at lunches and dinners...we had to ask for our meals on Friday evening--rubbery spaghetti noodles, cold chicken. The dinner at McCormicks and Schmidt though was excellent and the people we ate with at all our meals were wonderful. As for the boat cruise there was no comparison to the one in Providence where we got close enough to get some very good photos. I guess we got spoiled there. Did see off in a distance the channel lights which were new for me, only wished we were close enough to get photos. Thanks Joan and Larry for the use of your binoculars. Was glad to see the painting and sculpting activities again. While these can be frustrating, it is fun to try your hand at creating a special lighthouse. It gives you a new appreciation for the detail that is in every Harbour Lights piece. Overall the reunion was a lot of fun. I look forward to "chatting" with you all in the future and will be attending the next reunion wherever it may be.
Darlene

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55916 10/11/01 02:10 PM
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What can be said that hasn't been said already! Excellent job Harbour Lights! Mombo said it best - What could be better than going somewhere you have never been before and seeing so many people you know! It was great to meet people from the forums and see faces from past events! I have to agree that the boat trip in Providence was much better, but other things made up for that. The view of the lighthouse from our room on the eighteen floor was spectacular!

One change for future reunions that I would like to see is having a children's menu for the little ones. It was next to impossible to get our six year old something that he would eat on the adult menu.

Overall, this was the best one yet! After going to all three, how can they top this one!!

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55917 10/11/01 02:30 PM
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TD Offline
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Harbour Lights does one fine job of putting on a reunion. Since this was my third reunion I do have some things that I was disappointed about. The cruise was disappointing. I would have liked to have seen more lighthouses on Friday. Even if that meant that we would have needed to go by bus I would have much rather done that than the boat cruise. I preferred Providence to Baltimore. Also, I was expecting to see some previews of new HL's, fresnel lens, or Anchor Bay. When's the next reunion!

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55918 10/11/01 02:56 PM
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It's true...there is not much more to say on how great this trip was...This was our first reunion and we couldn't have been more pleased...so many great moments...so many great friendships renewed and new ones made...It was especially great to be able to meet all the "connected collectors" on Thursday night after the dinner...A great big "THANKS" to the Younger Family and Staff for putting on such a great reunion...I also want to thank St. John for setting up the wonderful bus tours that also made this trip so great...I can't stop the thanks there...I must add a great big thanks also to Paul & Sue Brady and Sean & Liz Thompson for being leaders on the tours...Another big thanks goes out to Darlene (Ladybug) and Judy (Sunshine) for working so dilligently on the scrapbook that was presented to the Younger Family, it turned out fantastic!! And again thanks to Paul for putting on the photo seminar, it must have done your heart good Paul to watch all these people going out and trying to get better photos, I saw people in positions I've never seen before All in all this was a fantastic trip for me and Terry.

Ruthie


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"Where words fail, Music speaks"
Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55919 10/11/01 08:13 PM
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My daughter Hannah and I had a wonderful time and the reunion. Hannah couldn't contain her enthusiasm and even offered a $50 bid on a crushed coin. Surprised the heck out of me, I may have to start giving her an allowance. I would like to give a special thanks to Mark and Michelle Wagner. Hannah and I were the only couple at our table not to win one of the centerpiece lighthouses so they gave us the Eddystone Light, which is a personal favorite. I heard Kim say emphatically that there would be no more reunions. I hope she just meant for the next two years, because I really want to make it four in a row.

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55920 10/12/01 07:41 PM
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This was also the first reunion for Rich & I and we can't thank Harbour Lights enough for the tremendous effort it must have taken to put something like this together for such a large group of people. Both of us enjoyed the activities, the lighthouses and, best of all, the people. It was nice to walk around the hotel and the streets, knowing that all of the dogtags were part of the HL extended family.

Also, a big thanks to John, the Thompsons and the Bradys for their work on organizing and conducting the tours. They were enlightening and a lot of fun and we met some very nice people on the bus.

Rich & Marilyn

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55921 10/14/01 02:09 AM
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First some raw numbers about my reunion trip:
10 days
2565 miles
138 gallons of gas - lowest $1.129 highest $1.349
42 lighthouses, 3 lightships
18 rolls of film
368 digital pictures

We Left home Friday September 28th, drove first to Liberty Park in New Jersey to see the Statue of Liberty, then visited and viewed lighthouses down to Cape May back up the Delaware river all the way to Philadelphia to see the Liberty Bell, then back down the other side of the Delaware river all the way to Assateague Island, then over to the Chesapeake Maritime museum to see Hooper Strait and on in to Baltimore for the reunion. As we went to register I spotted Fred Kuhlman (I recognized him from his Fighting Lightkeepers baseball card) searching for the registration location, as was I. After getting checked in I ran in to Bob Mckeon and his lovely wife Lorna, Lorna didn't make it to the providence reunion because that was the weekend that Bob had her scheduled to scrape the barnacles from his much talked about boat "It's Only Money"

After we registered, it was like a receiving line. First we were each given a red or blue nylon sport bag with a reunion schedule and handful of goodies, reunion coasters, HL key ring, a Chesapeake Bay book of post cards, a reunion patch, some nautical stickers, a reunion bookmark and an issue of "The Keepers Log" and our Hoopers Strait Clocks (for attending all 3 reunions). Next we moved down the line to get our reunion badges and Mini Hoopers pieces, then down a little more to pick up a couple bags of cookies and some Cape Cod pretzels (the little Lighthouse shaped one's) then down to the Connected Collector Director Dave Hannum handing out the fantastic connected collector badges. Thanks Dave, for all the hard work. Next it was on to have our picture taken with Bill and Nancy, a reunion button was added to our bags while we were being photographed.


Then I took a quick stroll thru the HL store and museum, and viewed the stuff for the auction and drawings One of a kind Maquarie with keepers quarters, Unpainted Borrows, Oregon, Plenty of neat stuff and then some.
Later we headed down for dinner, we met up with Richard Hetzler and his daughter Hannah, the kids hit it off right away. We spent a lot of time with Richard and Hannah through out the reunion and the great company just made the reunion that much better. Also at out table was a couple that lives about 20 minutes from us, Small world. After dinner there were cards dealt out at each table with some of the cards winners for the five pieces on each table, Statue of Liberty, Point Allerton, Drum Point-Signature series, Eddystone and Ship John Shoal. Each place setting had a photo album and the first thumbnail piece.

Friday morning, buffet style breakfast (so-so), afterwards a little mingling as we have a little time to kill as we are on the second boat (Blue battalion is first Red is second) Blue boat loading, photo from my room, the Rich Little suite on the 78th floor, after the blue battalion finally gets under way red quickly loads and is under way, Many famous and connected collectors on board, as we are heading downbound we spot the Coast Guard Cutter Eagle, what a beautiful sight that was. By the time we reached Sandy Point Lighthouse we caught and passed the blue boat, rumor had it that team blue was forcing many of the passengers to shovel coal into the boilers and that low endurance was slowing them down (that's what I heard) As we arrived back we were dropped off right at the Baltimore Aquarium, Very nice, I believe it was an entirely salt water aquarium

Bob Scroope, an avid fisherman caught his limit of the blue and yellow fish !!

Back to the hotel for dinner and a comedy sports team, Thumbnail #2 is at the table waiting for us.

Saturday morning, breakfast (better than yesterday) then Red battalion has the morning 9-noon to visit Seven foot knoll, the US submarine Torsk, USCGC Taney, and the lightship Chesapeake. Turns out all these things don't open until 10:00am - OOP'S, it cold and raining so we walk 2 blocks to the Port Discovery Kids Museum, Kids love it (cost way too much though - $39.00 for the four of us) McDonalds is next door, kids like that too. A box Lunch is served outside Seven Foot Knoll, Back to the hotel to Paint a lighthouse, sculpt a piece.

Rembrandt and Davinci hard at work.

Saturday night is Dinner at the lighthouse, actually McCormick and Schmidt's, A mini Seven Foot Knoll (different from the Little light 7 footer) waits at each place setting along with thumbnail #3, The appetizers are fantastic, they just kept bring more, could have made a meal just out of them, Dinner was even better, Desert was better yet. I get back to our room to catch the last few innings of Cal Ripken Jr's last game, out the window we can see the ballpark and the nearly continuous flashes of cameras and also from some of the buildings downtown too. As a tribute the Legg Mason building had the upper floors lighted to form the number 8 - Cal's number and then a short fireworks show after the game and fanfare.

Sunday morning, breakfast (so-so) 4th thumbnail at the table, after breakfast the fun starts, first an auction to benefit Cape Hatteras, first item up and inspired by the fun Hannah Hetzler bids up the item to $50.00 - a surprise to her dad, but she is soon outbid. After the Cape Hatteras auction, comes the big money HL rarities auction. It was loads of fun watching the show (and a half) Then came the opportunity drawings - more great stuff, about halfway thru the drawing my daughter Hannah won her choice of the goodies, I went to help her choose but after about 5 seconds she saw Diggers beautiful Cape Hatteras painting and took it down without a second thought, As it turns out I have given her the sense to recognize the finer things and didn't need to guide her choice. It hangs in the living room now.


After some goodbyes we packed up the family truckster and drove 2 blocks east to end up in a drive thru flea market, after getting thru that we headed for Concord and then Turkey point. While waiting in line to climb Concord someone in front of us heard Hannah telling someone behind us about the painting she just won, and from the front of the line we heard "you must be Hannah" and then while walking the 13 miles (seemed like it) to Turkey Point someone else walking the other way said "hey there's Hannah" After 6 years of collecting and going to events and reunions…. everyone remembers Hannah

My compliments to Harbour Lights and all there staff/family, it was a very well done, high class reunion, my money was well spent and I look foreword to another reunion if they choose to do so,

Thank You Harbour Lights and my fellow collectors for making it a great time !!
[This message has been edited by Mark Wagner (edited 10-14-2001).]

[This message has been edited by Mark Wagner (edited 10-14-2001).]

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55922 10/14/01 03:27 AM
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To paraphrase a joke JC told on the bus - "So who's the bald guy in the picture with Hannah?" LOL

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55923 10/14/01 07:23 AM
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Thanks you for sharing that with us, Mark. You put together a wonderful presentation.

Bob

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55924 10/14/01 09:05 AM
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Thanks Mark, I couldn`t make it,but you made me feel like I was there.

terry

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55925 10/14/01 10:42 AM
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Great job of reporting Mark. Thanks for wrapping it up so well.

I don't think you could see the look on Hannah's face when she spotted Digger's painting. It was priceless! Her eye's just went wide and you could tell everything left on the tables now meant nothing to her if she could have that painting!


John

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55926 10/14/01 03:49 PM
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As Bill H. would say, Wow! That is a great account along with some truly fine photos! Even though many of us were there we each have our own memories and photos which can be quite different. Thanks for sharing yours with us Mark!

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55927 10/14/01 03:56 PM
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Well 2beacons had made it back to the home port. 3284 miles after we left, 17 rolls of film used and a lifetime of memories made. Since Jeff and I had never been to a reunion we didn't know what to expect, needless to say we were overwhelmed. We can't believe the hard work that went into putting this on by the whole Younger organization. It was a wonderful event that we throughly enjoyed.

It was great to renew friendships that we made at the Chicago event this year and to make a bunch of new ones. We left Baltimore in just the nick of time as far as meals were concerned. If we were there much longer we would have gained enough weight that we would have need larger clothes.

Thanks to everyone who put in a lot of hard work to make this reunion a memorable event for all of those who were there.

Mary and Jeff
2beacons


Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55928 10/14/01 06:16 PM
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A couple more thoughts, I remembered more goodies that I forgot to put in the pictures, reunion luggage tags, a 60" red and white lighthouse wind sock, and the 2002 HL/Mark Sherman calendar, pictured but in the background. And a reunion schedule and phone and e-mail directory of reunion guests.

There is probably still a few goodies that I have forgotten still

Also when Hannah got back to the table with her painting her first words were "see Momma this is what I was telling you about"

Another thought, Nancy was on our boat trip with us, you don't think she met a ........... ah never mind
[This message has been edited by Mark Wagner (edited 10-14-2001).]

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55929 10/14/01 07:30 PM
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You mean a g...hey shouldn`t this be up in the rumor thread !? LOL

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55930 10/15/01 02:55 PM
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Thanks, HL, for giving us a year to prepare for this reunion both for time and financial reasons. We were finally able to work it out and thoroughly enjoyed our first reunion. I don't even want to think about the work all of you did to prepare for this or the work you did during the reunion. With your sense of "family," you made each of us feel special.

We just returned home last night from our combined vacation and reunion. We went from Assateague to Portland Head in Maine. Loved every minute. Everyone has used all the phrases that could possibly be used to describe the reunion. Thanks again, HL.

Kathy and Al

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55931 10/15/01 10:43 PM
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What I missed most by not being able to go is the camaradery and being able to meet face to face the many people I have been meeting on the forums thus far who have been a bunch of great friends in the last few months. Bill O'Brien


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Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55932 10/17/01 12:21 PM
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We had a great time at the Reunion. Met so many nice people, just sorry it went by so fast. The only complaint I had was the music at dinner was just to loud. Made it hard to talk to anybody. The only regrets were it was so big I didn't get to meet that many Connected Collectors, and Derith didn't get to hold the baby. Next time we see you for sure Derith!

Mike

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55933 10/17/01 12:38 PM
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Overall it was a great time. Yes there were a few clitches. The music was too loud. During one of the meals our table could hear but not understand what was being said, speaker problem. Some of the meals were not stellar but hey, when you are dealing with such a large amount of people it is next to impossible to expect no problems, complaints, etc. One couple I met (non-connected) were expessing their dislike over one of the meals but were having a "great time". If you want haute cuisine you don't go to such a large event for it. Anything I don't have to cook is fine by me!

It was hard also to meet every "Connected Collector". I know I missed a few but once again given the numbers....coupled with the fact that I managed to miss the intro portion of the Friday night coffee/scrapbook/social hour graciously arranged for us it was in part my own fault.

This is one reason why attending some of the other events is so rewarding, Collector Shows, Regionals, etc. Smaller groups make it much easier to meet and socialize with fellow Wackos!

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55934 10/17/01 09:36 PM
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Overall I thought that the reunion was a wonderful time. I really liked the seating arrangements at meals, that allowed us to get to know the others at the table, but didn't get to the uncomfortable stage meeting new people. I found it interesting that most people were more willing to talk about themselves and their lighthouse experiences, than about their personal HL collections. This gave me a chance to find out more about people who collected and enjoyed lighthouses, which made the experience even more enjoyable.

Also it was nice to be able to put faces to people. I really appreciated the large detailed forum tags that many wore that identified the person and their personal information more easily. Although I liked the Hooper Straight pins, I found the large tags more informative and easier to read. Maybe HL should look at that type of tag for the next forum. My only regret in the area of meeting people, is that we were a little shy and didn't take the opportunity to strike up more conversations. We will attempt to better at the next reunion.

Finally I want to thank the HL gang for putting together a truely memorable experience. I thought the food was wonderful, the tours were great, the prizes and gifts were overwhelming, and the personal interaction of the HL staff put the concept of "reunion" in the whole event. They made you feel like a member of a family. My only regret for the final day, is that I did not win the Old Point Loma piece which, I thought was great and would have fit into our collection perfectly. This was not only a memorable experience that will last for the rest of our lives, but it gave us a vacation that allowed us to view 32 new lighthouses and reenforce our love for lighthouses and the people who enjoy them as well. Thanks to all at the reunion for a great time.

Dick & Bev

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55935 10/22/01 01:14 AM
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Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55936 10/22/01 01:24 AM
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Excellent images, Mark. I've added a few to the Reunion Report (Saturday) and to the Lighthouses of the USA page (Seven Foot Knoll)

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55937 10/22/01 03:03 AM
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Nice pictures Mark...thanks for sharing them... We sure had a great time in Baltimore...

Ruthie


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Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55938 10/22/01 09:25 AM
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Thanks for sharing the photos with us, Mark. I hope you will be posting more. Photos at the forum are a great addition to the knowledge shared here. They certainly are popular with the forum members.

Keep up the great work!

Bob

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55939 10/22/01 11:23 AM
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Nice shots Mark, thanks. The last one is the USS Constellation.
http://www.constellation.org/

Re: What Did You Think of the Reunion? #55940 10/22/01 01:11 PM
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I am closing this topic at 50 posts. Look here to continue: http://www.lighthousekeepers.com/forums/Forum13/HTML/000158.html
Jim
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