["Reflections" Archives]

Looking back on
FNCA 1984

by Louise Dole Woofenden


© Louise Dole Woofenden 1985


Old Flames will remember MARY and VAL VALLADARES. Mary was our cook (30's and 40's) and Val was dishwasher and handyman. Val had a big dump truck: he hauled rubbish and garbage to the dump. On Late Night, the Flames piled cotton mattresses and old green blankets into the back of Val's truck and clambered in, ready for a chilly ride to the big city (N. Conway is big compared to Fryeburg).

STEVE LARSEN did a Val-caper during his stay last year: he piled Flames into the back of his truck (covered, but that is o.k.) and took them to the movies.

Finding transportation on Late Night is one of the Flames' big problems, and so thanks go to Steve for helping out.


© FNCA 1983One sunny afternoon, after a swim in the Saco, SARAH DOLE ---------------------> discovered that she was missing an earring (a Horseshoe© earring). Sarah had lost an earring before, but it had always turned up in the pile of a shag rug or under a chair cushion. But this time, thought Sarah, there's no chance of getting it back. It's somewhere downriver.

Next day, MARIAN KIRVEN (sans glasses, even) was standing in the water near the beach when she saw a little glint of silver at her feet. Was it a can tab? Was it a piece of mica? Marian reached down and picked it up — the Horseshoe earring that refuses to stay lost! We suggest that the old adage about finding the needle in the haystack be changed to "It's as hard as finding a Horseshoe earring in the Saco."


© Cassie Young 2009The traditional Flames vs. Embers volleyball game almost didn't go off last year — the ball was missing. Search of the Mouse Closet, where the volleyball resides in the winter, failed to produce this critical piece of oquipment. Flames mumbled and grumbled; Embers were worried — they needed practice time.

ROBIN and SUE TAFEL rushed to the rescue: A quick trip to North Conway, and back they came, and presented the Assembly with a new ball. The day was saved, and thanks are due to Robin and Sue (Poetic, wot?)


CLIFF ARCHER, who has recently moved to his new property in Bridgton, invited FNCA people to pick highbush blueberries. CAROLE RIENSTRA, with a group of Sparks, went out to the farm and picked enough for the whole camp to enjoy at dinner. And big bowls of delicious berries also appeared at breakfast. Were they ever good on our cereal! We're grateful for donations such as this, furnishing incomparable fresh produce and also lightening the food bill. We thank all the local pople who sent cucumbers, zucchinis, etc. for our enjoyment.


One afternoon, a phone call from a Fryeburg resident announced that in a short time, a newsworthy sight would pass by the camp: a man who was nearing the end of a coast-to-coast walking tour would be entering the village of Fryeburg from our end of town. A cluster of FNCA people waited at the end of our driveway, and after a time, a strange looking cart on bicycle wheels appeared, followed by a trim-looking, middle-aged man. Decals from all parts of the country were plastered all over the cart, and dust and sweat adorned DALE CURRY, who was greeted by our crowd, and stood talking with them while local news photographers snapped a few pictures. Soon, one of our group invited Dale in to the grounds. Someone went down to the spring for a glass of water. Someone invited Dale to dinner. One thing led to another, and it was discovered we had a vacant cabin (Robin and Sue moved into the house). Dale spent the night and joined us in the morning for breakfast and chapel before continuing on his way.


© Sarah May Grams 2016COLGATE SEARLE, II has made an amazing series of small-scale bridges (including a drawbridge that really works), retaining walls, docks, etc. He has created in miniature a whole river scene. This major construction project has been going on a few years, each session seeing a new addition to the complex. We trust that those who attend the Assembly the second week will again be treated to a glimpse of the marvels of Colgate's water world. Colgate in "real life" is a professional landscape architect. This seems to be his way of relaxing. We should be so clever....


(207) 935-2338

This is the Assembly phone number!

Last year, no end of frustration was endured by people trying to reach the camp. Several times, people who got a number from the information operator got the number of the kitchen at the church (no one's there).


In 1984, the Assembly facilities were used by several new groups. Early in the summer, a TM** group had a retreat (thanks to Ron Antonucci). Then after Convention at Geneva Point, two groups spent part of a week at the Assembly: a writers' workshop which featured skill in church publicity, and an R & R group who came to enjoy the mountain surroundings after a busy time at Convention. Many of the members of these last two groups had never been to Fryeburg before. We are looking forward to their attending one of our regular sessions soon.

These most welcome groups not only gave the Assembly added usefulness but brought in much-needed income for our recent repair and improvement proceedings.

© Louise Dole Woofenden 1985One of the highlights of 1984 for the Sparks was a musical, "Bullfrogs and Butterflies". Several of our Sparks joined with members of the Fryeburg Sunday School to present this story with a moral, complete with music, costumes, bullfrogs, and butterflies. Directed and accompanied by Carole Rienstra, the troupe played to a packed house.


One night last month, Robby Raymond, age 32, got into bed, turned on the tv, and fell asleep. Robby never woke in this world again.

Do you remember Robby Raymond? Who was he? — a handsome, friendly, good young man; a friend of Don Miller, whose parents, Gordon and Irva, are members of the Bridgewater Society. Shortly after his funeral, Robby's mother wrote this:

Dear Gordon and Irva,
   I would like to share with you a conversation that Robby and I had about a year ago. We were discussing the happiest times of our lives.
   Robby said the two weeks he spent at Fryeburg were the happiest two weeks of his life. He said there was nothing he didn't enjoy — even the work, that was fun, too.
   Robby loved nature, and that camp afforded him all the opportunity to enjoy it and share the love of it with others.
   You and Gordon were responsible for him having the best two weeks of his short life and I thank you both sincerely.

                                     Thank you again,

* Ed. Note: I believe this stands for: First Order of Business.

** Transcendental Meditation



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