Article by Ken Van Every, BA, Resident Life & Continuing Care Coordinator
The first Harbor Hall Alumni Reunion was held on September 1, 2018 and what a way to begin National Recovery Month but at Camp Daggett located on the shores of beautiful Walloon Lake and some amazing Harbor Hall Alumnus.
Many alumni with their families came out to re-connect and share their stories of recovery, their strengths, hopes and dreams. As Mike F. from Boyne City said “It was great to see everyone at Camp Daggett!! It was even better to see all the smiles and joy on all the faces!! Hopefully see more people next year. Thank you, Harbor Hall, for showing me that the grass can be greener!! Love you all!!” And Matt K. from Harrison “Such a blessed day. Sorely needed, words can’t explain how great it was seeing everyone!! Thank you, Heavenly Father!! #Grateful”, and Edward S. from Jackson “I just want to take a minute and say thank you to each and every one that made it out this weekend!!! Let’s keep this going guys it was amazing and enjoyed every second!!” And Joshua C. from Traverse City “It was so amazing to see everyone. It was a joy and brought tears to my eyes to spend time with everyone and all of Harbor Hall staff. Thank you, Harbor Hall, for giving me the gift of life and love again. Love every single one of you. Thank you again from the bottom of my heart. See you all next year.”
The day started with an open ceremony which first included members of The Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians performing a cleansing with smoke ceremony and ceremonial drumming and singing. Dan Thompson Spiritual Director at the Hall delivering an invocation prayer, followed by Pat McGinn with opening remarks.
After the open remarks each alumnus came up to the stage to receive a Harbor Hall Alumni medallion, introduce themselves, where they were from and what they were grateful for. So, the opening ceremony was incredible and went as planned and I love it when a plan comes together.
The rest of the day was spent socializing, swimming, pontoon boat rides, games and dining on great food provided by Burnt Offerings from Petoskey.
In the evening a live Rockin Recovery concert was perform by Toby Jones from Harbor Springs. And finally, the evening ended with an open talk meeting around the campfire. A great time was had by all. Plans for next year’s reunion are already in the works.
A special thank you goes out to the Harbor Hall Foundation for providing support and Camp Daggett for providing the venue. Other contributors from the surrounding area were: Holiday Inn Express, Apple Tree Inn of Petoskey, Snippets of Time Photography, Reusch Jewelers, Sky’s the Limit Florist, Northern Michigan Artist Market, Grain Train, Charlevoix City Golf Course, Whippoorwill, Family Video, City Park Grill/Palette Bistro, Cutler’s, Great Lakes Gourmet, Grandpa Shorter’s Gifts, Morning Star Jewelry, Meyer ACE Hardware, Mighty Fine Pizza, Craig Ryan, David’s Place, County Emmet Celtic Shop, Roast and Toast, and McLean & Eakin Boksellers.