Bob & Grace Salk, the high bidders at Angel Island Conservancy’s (AIC) 6th Annual Angel Lights Countdown Benefit, enjoyed “picture perfect” weather for their 4th of July overnight stay at Angel Island State Park’s (AISP) Civil War era Camp Reynolds. Bob & Grace were joined by their daughter Bailie, son Connor and guests Laura and Mari Molina.
It was a rare combination of staying overnight at the historic “Quarters 10″, a VIP tour with celebrity television personality Doug McConnell and a gourmet Multi-Regional Indian banquet prepared by AIC Board of Directors member and international designer, Sudha Pennathur with the assistance of her husband, Ed Messerly. After dessert, guests were taken to a strategic spot on the island to watch fireworks exploding around the Bay. Following this spectacle, guests retired to the comfort of cozy beds for an overnight stay in “Quarters 10”, the beautifully restored Victorian style officer’s quarters at Camp Reynolds.
Guests Grace & Bob Salk related “Everyone needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in as well as pray in, where nature will heal and give strength to body and soul. – John Muir –
Our family’s unique and special experience during Angel Island’s 4th of July overnight excursion supported by AIC, gave breath, life and meaning to Muir’s words. Our connection to AI started as soon as we arrived on the ferry, through the expert tour led by Doug (McConnell) and Linda. Every step we took, every door we opened, within the buildings supported by aging walls and peeling paint were stories that brought us closer to the Island’s profound historic past. From drinks and hors d’oeuvres served in front of the beautifully restored Bake House, to the epicurean feast, the night refused to disappoint. As darkness descended, we ended up at the top of AI, amidst the mass that gathered to watch spectacular fireworks from three different parts of the bay area.
To our family, this was the most spectacular 4th of July. We reluctantly departed the following morning. But with new friends in tow, refreshed and rejuvenated we left with and a sense of ownership on the importance of AIC and its efforts to preserve one of the most beautiful places in the bay area.”
Special thanks to AISP Superintendent, Amy Brees, who greeted the group; AIC Board member and AISP Docent Linda Moore for her input during the tour; Gary Morgret, Kristopher Carroll for the scrumptious hors d’oeuvres; AIC Operations Manager, Jacquie Klose who coordinated the event; and Kathy Taft and Cesar, who assisted Sudha with “kitchen detail.”
There are only three ways you might be lucky enough to spend the night at AISP’s Quarters 10 – you are AISP staff or their visiting family, you earn the privilege by volunteering on the island, or you attend AIC’s 7th Annual Angel Lights Countdown Benefit when attendees will have the rare opportunity to bid on experiences like this. It’s not too late to save the date – November 29th!
Many thanks for the photos courtesy of Sudha Pennathur and Gary Morgret.
About Quarters 10, Camp Reynolds
With concern mounting over threats to the Bay Area from Confederate sympathizers and naval forces, the federal government established Camp Reynolds. The Officer’s Quarters 10, was first built and lived in on Yerba Buena Island, then later disassembled, barged over to Angel Island and reassembled. It was restored to its former glory by Dr. Robert Noyes and his wife Mary who spent months living in a tent on the grounds until they could stay in the quarters while they continued to lovingly restored it. Following are views rarely seen by the public.