A touch of spring: 'Flower Power'

Our very own YMCA Alumni member, Wendy Fox, and her design partner Maria Jacobs, took the "Big One" at the Philadelphia Flower Show! "The National Garden Club's 'Medal for Design' is awarded to the design exhibit judged by an NGC panel to be the finest in a major, non-standard flower show." The Award was presented to Wendy and Maria for their Dynamic Duo, Dress and Hat Design consisting of all dried plant material except the fresh lilies.  Wendy is a longtime member of the Elverson Garden Club which participates annually in the Philadelphia Flower Show. She also is an accomplished photographer. Congratulations Wendy.

April 2023

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From the President... Len Wilson

Len Wilson

Hello Craig,

This is my very first letter to all my friends in our chapter. I volunteered in late January to become Interim President for the chapter until a new President can be identified. The Chapter Board approved my appointment February 10.


It’s hard to imagine Barbara writing her letter in Clippings for 12 years. A lot of change has happened in our chapter over those years, especially as we mourn the loss of some dear friends, but they remain in our memories of good times and fellowship shared.


We had more than 20 members attend our first membership meeting of 2023 at the Philadelphia YMCA. The details of our meeting and reflections from Bill Cameron are part of this newsletter and I hope you can feel the excitement and joy of finally coming out of our COVID retreats. Hopefully our attendance will continue to grow throughout the year.


Please circle and hold the dates of June 15, for our annual shore gathering at my summer home in Strathmere, and plan to be in Doylestown August 9 when we converge for food, fun and friendship in Ken White’s backyard. Let’s plan to have some fun together this year and invite other retirees to join us.


We are searching for a permanent President for our chapter, and this could be my first and last letter. When my replacement is chosen, I will help share the tasks that come with the position. It is an honor and lots of fun working with one of the best board of officers assembled to lead our chapter.


Please stay connected with our chapter and plan to attend some of the events listed on our calendar for this year.

Len Wilson, Interim President

Left: Speaker Shaun Elliott, CEO, Greater Philadelpia YMCA.

Top photo: Back row L to R: Pete Smith, Len Wilson Roy Taylor, Gary Graham, Hank Van Zanten. Middle row: Frannie Smith, Betteann Kramer, Cathy Fromm, Jay  Schaeffer, Barbara Taylor, Lois Van Zanten. Front row: Nancy Grey, Bill Cameron, Debbi Zvanut, Joyce Wilson

A letter from Bill...

Bill Cameron sent a letter to you after attending our meeting in Philly. Click the button below to read it.

Bill's letter

Thanks to National Service Project donors

As we have reached the end of the member portion of our 2nd campaign year for the YMCA Alumni National Service Project, we want to acknowledge (as of March 1) all the donors (members and friends) from Central Atlantic Chapter. Thanks to you the NSP is working hard to fulfill our promise to build four tiny homes and two "twigs" for the YMCA of the Seven Council Fires. If we missed you, please email Gary Graham and he will correct the oversight in a subsequent newsletter. (Photo by Randi Sidman-Moore)

Bruce Black * Virginia Booth * Vanessa Boulous * Central Atlantic Chapter * Louis Coxe * Mark Dibble * Facebook Birthday Fundraiser *

Cathleen Fromm * Jude Gallaher * Gary & Bonnie Graham * Mike Graves Nancy Gray * Greater Philadelphia YMCA * Gary & Linda Green

Kurt Kramer * Mark LaFortune * W. Matthew Leininger * Lisa & Gie Liem David Long III * Steve Lynch * Daniel & Mary Muldoon * Don & Julie Painter Berni Pippett-Mullen * Peter Redmon * Nancy & Dennis Rieger

Melanie Roth * Alice Sawyer * Jay Schaeffer * John and Ted Schmiechen Allan Shaffer * Peter & Frannie Smith * Joseph Tankle

Barbara & Roy Taylor * William Taylor * Hank & Lois Van Zanten

Tim Wellman * Ken & Christine White * Len & Joyce Wilson

YMCA of the Pines * Debra Zvanut

Consider an overseas assignment with YMCA Alumni's ISC program

YMCA Staff: Don’t you sometime long to roll up your sleeves and work on a program or do some development work?


The program for you as a retiree is the International Service Corps (ISC), a program of YMCA Alumni and the way to share your expertise with YMCAs around the globe. The ISC Task Force is looking for you so you can give of your time for as few as 2 weeks to 6 months to volunteer abroad. 

The following YMCAS are looking for a volunteer just like you: Panama; Salto, Uruguay; Nicaragua; YMCA of the Americas, Caribbean( this one is virtual and can be done from your home!); Dominican Republic; Bahamas; Albania; Cayman Islands; Albania; Bogota, Columbia; North Macedonia; and Novosibirsk, Siberia. If you would like to share your love of the YMCA and your personal expertise, contact Wayne Uhrig. Click the button below to visit the ISC information page on the YMCA Alumni website.

A team is once again going to Camp Marrowbone, the Camp of the YMCA of the Seven Council Fires, to prepare the camp for summer, June 5-10. They are looking for a few more volunteers and then will shift their sponsorship to a local chapter. Email Debbi Zvanut.

ISC Information

A Central Atlantic Chapter spring adventure: Pearl Buck House

April 26, 2023

Join in our Central Atlantic Chapter spring adventure Wednesday, April 26 for lunch and a special guided tour of  at the Rams Pint House & Rooftop Lounge followed by a guided tour of The Pearl Buck House.


We will meet at 11:30 a.m. for lunch at the Rams Pint House & Rooftop Lounge (photo right) located at 606 W. Chestnut Street, Perkasie, PA 18944.


The Pearl Buck House (top photo), formerly known as Green Hill Farm, is the 67-acre homestead in Bucks County where Nobel Prize Winner and author Pearl Buck raised her family and pursued humanitarian interests and gardening.The house is located at 520 Dublin Road, Perkasie, PA 18944


Tour cost for seniors is $11 and will begin at 2 p.m. (payment can be made that day).

Please email Cathy Fromm no later than April19 if you plan to attend.

--Nancy Gray, Vice President/ Programs

Erin Go Kenno:

Irish Soda Bread

I honor my grandmother from Ireland every St Patrick’s Day by making Irish Soda Bread. But to be honest, I was always disappointed with the results.

Over the years I tried various recipes and all of them fell short of the flavor I longed for. That is until last year when I tried an Epicurious recipe. It was amazing and now for the second year I have wowed neighbors and friends with this tradition. Click the button to download the recipe. It is quick and easy. If you don’t like Soda Bread, try making some Scones (rhymes with gone, not cone); they are delicious. Erin go Bragh!


We extend a warm welcome to our new members who recently retired. We hope to see you at one or all of our chapter events. 

(Photos left to right): Rich Curl has been with the YMCA since 1977 at several YMCAs in the Philadelphia area. He has been the CEO of the Harrisburg YMCA for the past 25 years.


Linda Erdos was Sr. VP of Marketing and Communication YMCA of Metropolitan Washington. She recently retired from the Arlington Public Schools in Virginia as Asst. Superintendent for Communications. 

Kim Johnson served the YMCA of Reading and Bucks County for 39 years in a variety of positions from pre-school director to CEO.

Mary Young served YMCAs from Southeast Ventura County to the YMCA of Delaware, finally retiring as Resource Director of Y-USA.

50 years for Bonnie and Gary

Bonnie and Gary Graham celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary. Their kids took them to Miami Beach to celebrate this milestone. Now that raises the bar for everyone! Show this article to your kids; perhaps you too can get a trip out of it, too.

Make your travel plans with us

Adventures at a glance

Sept. 20-28, 2023 Mackinac Island & Grand Hotel

Oct. 15-25, 2023: Gems of the Danube & Prague

Jan. 27-Feb. 4, 2024: Winter Warm-up in Caribbean

April 21-May 3, 2024: Atlantic Crossing

May 6-12, 2024: Italy by Rail

Aug. 14-21, 2024: Scottish Dream

Sept. 27 - Oct. 4, 2024: America's Music Cities

Jan. 27-Feb. 2: 2025: Alumni Reunion at Sea Cruise

Travel Club Info

Central Atlantic Chapter Leaders

Interim President: Len Wilson

Membership: Cathy Fromm

Programs: Nancy Gray

Secretary: Jude Gallaher

TreasurerBetteanne Kramer

Hospitality/EAF: Hank and Lois Van Zanten

World Service/ISC: Debbi Zvanut

Clippings Editor: Jude Gallaher

Special Projects:  Gary Graham

Past President: Barbara Taylor

Click on name in blue to send email.

The mission of YMCA Alumni is "to enable members to promote a nurturing worldwide Christian Fellowship that provides educational, social, service and charitable opportunities."

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