It’s been my pleasure to work on all 32 Floating Home Tours, and to co-chair the Tour Committee for the past several years. During that time I’ve met some extraordinary people, and forged lasting friendships with many of them. This year was no exception, and the combination of tour committee members and volunteers staged the smoothest tour I can remember. My thanks to everyone who pitched in, particularly the homeowners who opened 15 floating residences to 650 awed and appreciative attendees.
And now, it’s time to take a break, both for the community and the Tour Committee; several Committee members have been managing the same tasks for several years in a row. The FHA treasury is in good shape. So the Tour Committee has recommended, and the FHA Board has agreed, that there will be no public tour next year. This is not unprecedented. The Seattle Floating Homes Association, which served as our model when we started our tour, offers their own tours every other year. And we skipped the tour a few years ago ourselves─remember when Ted Sempliner turned our annual Membership Party into a soup kitchen? At the time, we worried about losing momentum and institutional memory about how the tour operates, but a new Tour Committee came together the following year, and put on another successful event. Since then, the Committee has been painstakingly assembling job descriptions and timelines, which will be helpful tools when the tour resumes in 2019.
Since the tour is the major funding source for the FHA, the Board will shift focus to increasing revenue from private tours, which are offered to groups of 40 or less, and are far simpler to run. If you know of a group that might be interested in taking an intimate, docented private tour, please contact FHA president Katherine Boschetto.
And when the public tour resumes, I urge everyone in the community to get involved, either in the planning stages, or on tour day. You’ll find it an incredibly rewarding experience.