I’d like to start this week by talking briefly about the past. Kim Perkins was the face, and heart, of the North Conway Community Center from 1958 until he retired in 2000.

Along with the late Roger Grucel, Perkins oversaw several generations of young people in sports and other activities and always found ways to run the center well while on a shoestring budget. On any given weekend, you might see Perkins flipping burgers at one of the many valley events, each time bringing back both money and abundant community goodwill.

Perkins passed away in January 2017 and recently his family got together to create and install a marble bench and brass plaque as a memorial outside the center’s Main Street entrance. It has been said that as long as we remember people they stay with us. Thanks to members of Perkins family this will surely ring true.

Speaking of remembering, on Saturday, June 1, the Memorial Expression Swing was dedicated to Halsten Butterfield, late son of Mark and Maria Victoria Butterfield. Members of his family gathered, and the rain held off, and we had a moment together to honor Halsten’s short but meaningful life.

Monday, June 3, was the League of Women Voters innovative meet-your-legislators “speed dating” event. A large crowd attended and made the most of this creative and informative opportunity to meet and greet our elected officials in an up close and personal setting.

We hope you saw the ad in The Conway Daily Sun with our “thank you” to all of our many generous 13th annual golf tournament sponsors. We do hope to see you all again on Wednesday, May 13, 2020, for the 14th annual tournament.

The center is still actively seeking a summer camp director and support staff for nine weeks of mostly outdoor activities with kindergarten to sixth-graders here on our North Conway campus. This is a great opportunity for those teachers who enjoy being with kids year-round. We have a couple of openings left this year, and we have revised our curriculum to better serve our youth and their families.

The Mount Washington Valley Pickleball Group has shifted for the most part to its summer location at the Club at Christmas Mountain in Glen, and its varied schedule is on the Mount Washington Valley Pickleball Group’s Facebook page Indoor advanced pickleball will still take place here on Tuesday and Thursday evenings from 6 to 8 p.m. and Sundays remain an option. We will also hold the usual gym hours open for rainy days until summer camp starts. Thanks to Bob Drake for stepping into the role of North Conway Community Center facility coordinator.

We are thrilled to report that our new solar panels are already generating electricity for the center’s day-to-day use. The 52 panels will generate 18,200 kW of power each year, and even on cloudy days there is still some gain, thus saving us money each and every day. We have a real time online view of the process and will soon install a lobby display for all to see. As of today, the energy we have saved offers the environmental impact of planting 104 trees.

T-Ball is in its final week. Located at the John Fuller School field, the program is offered on Mondays and Wednesdays from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m., right after school gets out for the day. The last day is Monday, June 10.

Mark your calendars for NH Gives, a statewide 24-hour Give-a-Thon on June 11 and 12 that inspires new donors to help their favorite organizations. We’re on the list this year for the first time, which is really exciting. This is a fairly new program of the NH Center for Nonprofits designed to take advantage of the national surge in online giving.

Summer camp starts on Monday, June 24, and sign-ups are still available in the schools, online and at the center. Staff will be here doing orientation and first aid/CPR training the week before. We are filling up fast so be sure and sign up soon.

The first Mount Washington Valley Food Truck Festival is scheduled for July 6. It will be free and open to the public. So far five trucks have signed up. Sponsorships are being sought and more information will follow.

Adult basketball takes place from 7 to 9 p.m. on Monday evenings (ages 30 and older), and on Wednesdays (for 18 to 30) as well as a pick-up adult group during lunch on Wednesdays and Fridays. The MWV Soccer Club will soon switch to Sunday evenings from 7 to 9 p.m.

Afternoons throughout the spring also offer times for casual table games, with both mahjong (Thursdays 2 to 5 p.m.) and canasta (Tuesdays 1 to 4 p.m.) drawing regular devotees. These run until school gets out.

For schedule times and changes, go to northconwaycommunitycenter.org or the center’s Facebook page. We can’t always get to the phone while programs are underway or we are busy cleaning, so this is a quick and easy way to get answers to your questions in real time. We are closed on Sundays, except for pickleball from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

For more information on programs and activities at the center, call (603) 356-2096 or email northconwaycommunitycenter@gmail.com. Our web and Facebook pages are also kept up to date with information and are always your best bet for timely updates. Ian, Alex, Mary Ann and Tim are on site most days.

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