On Monday, August 31st, the Presidents of the Boeing Recreation clubs were summoned for a Webex where it was announced that due to the current economic condition, Boeing has decided to terminate all subsidies to its clubs. For our club, this comes in the form of use of space in the 7-226 building as well as use of our storage shelter in the Kent Space Center Parking lot. To put it simply, no devoted space for a club on Boeing property. In addition to this news, the leaders were informed that due to the potential for flooding due to the Howard Hansen Dam, all equipment must be moved by October 19th with activities at the Kent Recreation Center ending by September 30th. We were recently provided permission to release the attached letter.
As you all know, this is a significant blow to the way that our club has been doing business, in particular to the Grape Procurement side of the house. While this is highly unfortunate, we must start looking for immediate and long term solutions for maintaining our club's operations.
Upon notification of this information, the BEWBC board has taken the following actions:
- We have contacted Recreation informing them of the obligations and requirements of the upcoming harvest and a request for deviation or additional support
- We contacted all vineyard focals to consider alternate approaches to managing the harvest
- We have held an emergency board meeting to discuss options and plans of action
- We have approached the Masonic Lodge about storage of meeting materials and received word that they are providing us with a cabinet
- We are already investigating alternate storage and logistics options and considering club demographics and requirements
Despite the frustrations and challenges that lie ahead, we need your support in the upcoming weeks. There are many options out there for alternate ways to support components of club operations. Between our 100+ members, we have numerous capabilities, contacts, and ideas. While the core board and grape procurement team are considering options, if you have some constructive ideas for possible solutions, please pass them on to either Mick Pegg, Kathryn Chalfan, Kevin Neal, Joe Sikora, or myself. If you have a special relationship with a storage facility or maybe you know about a large space which would be understanding of our organization's operations, let us know. While many ideas may not work out, we'd rather have multiple options than none. We are looking for actionable ideas and leads.
At this point, we will need some extra understanding and support from members as we work through the initial barriers. Our focals will need you to be a bit flexible on the crush operations this year. But if we make it through this harvest as a team, we can work on getting a more resilient framework in place for next year. Please be ready to give as much help as needed during this emergency for our club.
We hate to be the bearer of bad news and while we all may have a lot to say about support to the Recreation program, our efforts are best focused on solving our problem at hand. We are going to work with Recreation and the other clubs to try to find the best solution so burning ties with their support will not help our efforts.
Look for more information to come in the upcoming week, but until you hear from us again, please think about ways that we could keep the club running in an effective and efficient manner. With a little effort from everyone, we will make it through this intact and more self-sufficient than ever.