Second Play and Stay Weekend Draws Raves

The weather was perfect on Saturday for a lazy float down the Pemigewasset River.

The weather was perfect on Saturday for a lazy float down the Pemigewasset River.

Campers had perfect weather last weekend for the second annual Play and Stay weekend. The camping event, sponsored by the SEA/SEIU Local 1984 Social Activities Committee, was held at the Pemi River Campground in Thornton, and drew around 50 participants.

Many of those in attendance, like member Merith Deschene, were at last year’s Play and Stay weekend.

Campers were treated to s'mores kits put together by Tammy Clark and Brenda Thomas.

Campers were treated to s’mores kits put together by Tammy Clark and Brenda Thomas.

“It was so much fun last year, I went again, and the weather was cooperating with us,” said Deschene, who works for the Department of Transportation. “I managed to bring family I didn’t bring last year.”

Lots of members brought family, and Deschene added it was a good opportunity to talk to other union members in a more social setting.

“It was the friendliest bunch of people I’ve ever seen camping,” she said. “Warm, welcoming and wonderful all around.”

Rebecca Ladd, a member from the NH Veterans’ Home, also came for the second year in a row, bringing along her family, plus a co-worker.

“I had a fabulous time,” said Ladd, who’s a ward clerk/LNA at the Veterans’ Home. “We’re already planning what we might do differently next year.”

Her co-worker, Brenda Poehler, was at the Play and Stay for the first time, and brought along her granddaughter.

“I thought it was a good time,” Poehler said. “It brought people together, and I’d do it again.”

Campers relax at their campsites at the Play and Stay weekend this past weekend.

Campers relax at their campsites at the Play and Stay weekend this past weekend.

Bringing people together is the goal of Social Activities events like this, something Ladd said she appreciated.

“I think it’s fabulous, because I got to meet new people who work in different areas of the state who do different things,” Ladd said.

Cindy Perkins was one of many members of the SEA/SEIU Local 1984 Board of Directors in attendance. She cheered the work the Social Activities Committee put into organizing the weekend.

“We had great food, both Saturday night and Sunday morning,” Perkins said. “Besides the deep-fried turkeys and lots of corn-on-the-cob, everyone brought salads. We tubed and kayaked and canoed on the Pemigewasset River. Some of us had adventures – near catastrophies? – which resulted in good stories to tell. I definitely pity all who chose not to come and play with us!”

Camping 3

There was plenty for kids to do — and plenty of other kids to make friends with — at the Play and Stay weekend.

Tammy Clark, who again helped organize the event, said it was good to see it grow and good to see members enthusiastic about taking part again next year.

“It’s gotten popular enough that we may have to expand it a bit next year,” Clark said. “I think it’ll help to have a group of those who attended join in on the planning for next year. It’ll be even better.”

The Play and Stay Weekend was organized by Clark and Kevin Myers, with volunteer help from Brenda Thomas and Cheryl Towne. Cheryl deserves special thanks for coordinating food, dry goods, ice and those fried turkeys mentioned above. Thanks to all who came out for a fun weekend.

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