A special thank you from BIPS

April 10, 2020
By Marcy Shortuse

SUBMITTED BY THE BARRIER ISLAND PARKS SOCIETY – Like other organizations on the island, due to COVID-19, Barrier Island Parks Society has sacrificed our ability to continue our mission to inspire, educate and preserve our natural and historic treasures, in hopes to preserve and protect the lives of our global and local visitors, volunteers, staff and community. BIPS closed the beloved Port Boca Grande Lighthouse & Museum, Gasparilla Island Lighthouse, Amory Memorial Chapel and all programs and events during the height of season, with a negative financial impact to BIPS of over $300,000.

Our best known annual event and fundraiser, the Green Gala, was also canceled. Not only did we miss the fun and enjoyment of sharing this magical evening with you to celebrate our 30th Anniversary, but BIPS lost a sustaining base for funding our parks, historic landmarks and educational programs.

Thankfully, some very generous sponsors and guests allowed us to keep all or part of their gifts as donations. We would like to sincerely thank you each for being our heroes, for your passion, commitment and belief in BIPS and its mission to inspire the exploration and preservation of our natural and historic treasures.

Our Deepest Thanks to:

Frank and Jeannette Wood at Advanced Cabinetry Systems, Fred and Bobbie Allardyce, Gary and Cathy Ballman, Jamie Beckstead, Jim Benson, John Berlinger, Gary and Mary Berry, Mark Spurgeon at Boca Grande Real Estate, David and Kelly Borza, Ann Bowman, Rick and Lyndon Chamberlain, Karen and Chandler Converse, Brian Corcoran, Virginia Cotherman, David and Alice Court, Tom and Kitty Cross.

Patrick and Sarah Daly, Dennis and Marsy Doan, Scott and Karen Feringa, John and Betty Goddard-Fisher, Robert Frederick, Damelle Grannon, Jim and Lynda Grant, Mark and Rose Guidinger, Harry and Regina Haddad, Larry and Pam Hannah, Richard and Deborah Houck, Stephen and Deborah Humphrey, Lindy and Kathy Hustedt, Doug and Chrys Hyde.

Cheryl Klaus, Kathleen Jarosik at Xpertech, Mary Beth Kilian and Gena Ficher-Kilian, John and Lona Kissinger, Richard and Dian Klepser, Rob and Marcia Knapp, Frank Koffend, Stu and Jill Lewis, Jeff and Carol Mack, John and Gloria Mitchell, Maryjo Mostyn at Sotheby’s Gulf to Bay, Pete and Ginny Nicholas, Jim and JoAnn Nordlie, Dan and Barbara O’Connell, Ron and Lois Raedeke, Ed and Nora Lea Reefe, John and Pat Rice, Tim and Peggy Saewert, John and Joan Senior, Peter and Sarah Sherwood, Bob and Linda Sommerville, Ron Smith, Dennis and Melanie Sullivan, Bob and Babs Vanyo, Edward and Stephanie Vick, Vicki Weil and Sam Holt, Dan and Linda Wiggin, Tom and Whitty Wilcox, David and Stephanie Williams, Ted and Nancy Wilson, Victoria Winterer and Ross and Pat Witschonke.

We would also like to give a very special thanks to all of those wonderful people who volunteered to help at the Green Gala, we couldn’t do it without you!

Many thanks to you, from the BIPS Board of Directors and Staff.