Welcome to Newport Living and Lifestyles I’m Christon and joining us today is Joe Pratt
from the Boys and Girls Club and Jennifer Saia from B&B; yacht charters and
we’re going to talk a little bit today about an event coming up on August 9th
Christon, well this is our 6th annual Newport Yacht rendezvous. It’s our
signature event our largest fundraiser of the year
we’re expecting 400 guests to join us this year. Wow! and we’re real
fortunate as our signature event we raise money to support the Boys and
Girls Club in our programs and this year we’re going to hold a special raise the
paddle which is going to be aimed to support our Camp Grosvenor.
How much money do we expect to raise this year?
obviously we rely on our generosity of our friends they’ve been very generous
in the past over the six years we’ve raised 1.2 million. The average is about two
hundred thousand a year so we’re hopeful, but the raise the paddle portion is
gonna be targeted at the camp. Camp Grosvenor is a hundred-acre outdoor camp located
in Saunderstown Rhode Island. We serve this year our largest year and since
I’ve been at Boys and Girls Club we have 200 campers per week joining us they can
experience everything from the waterfront paddle boards canoes kayaking
swimming a 45 foot high twisting helix Tower. Oh my gosh! I was gonna say, count
me in until he just said that!. If you’re scared of heights we also have a hi-low ropes course again 45
feet high where we harnessed the kids in they learn team building and trust. Wonderful
programs really a great outdoor experience where they make friends for
life and in the kids come from every community where the Boys and Girls Club
of Newport County. We’re serving Newport Middletown Portsmouth Jamestown and our
camp is in Saunderstown Rhode Island. We’re serving kids from Westerly,
South Kingstown and North Kingstown. Really grown and I think a direct
tribute to the staff, we have the best staff of any club in the country.
They’re really delivering it and that’s why the kids stay. They form relationships with the staff.
That’s so important. I can remember growing up and I’m still keeping some of my teachers
near and dear to my heart. It’s really one of the key elements for the programs we do.
Our mission is to enable all youth to achieve their full potential.
and we serve all youth, but we do our best to never turn anyone away because of
finances so we serve the ones that are most at risk and when you look around us
we’re living in this beautiful community. Yachts and beautiful scenery.
However Newport’s a real dichotomy, you know, we have great wealth but we have
great poverty. The poverty in the city of Newport is 15% across the city. If you
take a left when you come into Newport off the bridge. The poverty in the northern part
of the city is 45% It’s so great that you guys are doing such great
things for the community. If people want to get involved and help sponsor,
participate in events, where can they find you. They can find us
on the web www.BGCnewport.org or call 401.847.6927
Oh, that’s his mobile number! It might not be, I just joking….
I would encourage it. If folks haven’t been to the club in a long time, it’s changed significantly.
We have a wonderful board, Jennifer is one of our board members, really doing
great work in the community. We’ve invested a million and a half in our facilities, the camp,
our local facilities serving more kids than ever. We serve twenty
thousand meals a year, provide transportation to and from the club.
Really making sure the kids that need it most get it. In Newport we
talked about the dichotomy, 65% of the kids qualify for free
reduced lunch, 42% of the kids single-parent households, 32%
of the kids are chronically absent. That’s touching, touching numbers. There’s a real need there.
The best way to make a difference is to get involved. A really great way for you guys to raise
funds is the Yacht Hop Rendezvous. Yes! the Newport Yacht Rendezvous and I was
involved with the Boys and Girls Club of Broward County Florida. I moved up
here 6 years ago. I had no idea of the need. I really always thought that it was
just a wealthy wealthy community. The Yacht Hop in Broward County that’s
been going on over 25 years. It’s such a significant event there, and I’ve said
why don’t we do it here! There’s nobody that does this here . We go to these
unbelievable galas in all these beautiful mansions but they’re all pretty
much the same . This brings out like just a diverse group of people with
definitely the high net worth individuals. You go from yacht to
yacht to yacht. Each boat has a theme and a signature cocktail ( You would think I have had one already! )
The yacht crew really get into it. It’s really fun ! How many yachts do
you have this year ? This year we have 9 vessels and they’re from 41 feet to 112.
A diverse group of boats, a Westport, a Hatteras, we’ve got a dinner cruise boat,
we’ve got a really beautiful nostalgic vessel that’s 58 feet, it’s called Goddess
I think I am one! I like that!
My nickname is, Yacht Queen, any way. One of the things that is real special is. as the guests come in
you know they come down the entrance way, the kids from the club greet them, so the
kids are there welcoming them and escorting them to the to the vessels if
you will. We might be inspiring the next yacht
captain or at least a yacht engineer we need more yacht crew. There you go, so
I’ve been asked several times, what do you wear this year? Nautical chic.
It’s from preppy to very very traditional yacht attire, but please
slip on, slip off shoes. It’s very difficult to go from boat to boat to
boat if you have to untie your shoes. Actually don’t wear socks guys.
because if you go up and down the stairs you might slip. OK, good to note.
Any thing else that we should make note of? Christon, I would, one thing we want to add, is this year is
a special year for us, we’re honoring a former board member Rocky Kempenaar.
He was on the board for 20-plus years, a longtime volunteer supporter, benefactor
of the club, just a wonderful supporter in the community. Really special night
for him and for us. Join us, see the kids, learn more about
the club. We are sold out right? We’re fortunate to be in a great community.
Thanks guys, we look forward to seeing you on Newport Living and Lifestyles