'Forever in Blue Jeans' event tickets on sale now, portion supports YMCA Camp Sloper

Published on Thursday, 22 September 2022 14:24


SOUTHINGTON – Tickets for the Southington-Cheshire Community YMCA’s annual “Forever in Blue Jeans” event are on sale now, with a portion of proceeds supporting planned improvements at YMCA Camp Sloper.

The Forever in Blue Jeans gala will be held Nov. 18 at 6 p.m. at The Aqua Turf Club at 556 Mulberry St. The event, which is the YMCA’s largest fundraiser and party of the year, will celebrate the community. There will be dinner, dancing, an open bar and live and silent auctions. Proceeds will support the YMCA programs and camp scholarships as well as the YMCA Camp Sloper Capital Campaign.

Mark Pooler, chief executive officer of the Southington-Cheshire Community YMCA at 29 High St., said that he anticipates the Forever in Blue Jeans gala will attract as many as 700 or 800 people. Guests are encouraged to wear jeans as well as the orange and blue colors of YMCA Camp Sloper.

“This will be the kickoff of our capital campaign and public awareness campaign for YMCA Camp Sloper,” said Pooler.

Pooler said that several improvements are coming to the camp at 1000 East St. in the next two years.

“We’re making $4.5 million in capital improvements, $3.5 million of which are for the dredging of Sloper Pond,” said Pooler. “It’s preventative maintenance; as ponds naturally age they turn into swamps and then meadows. Sloper Pond is an invaluable part of what we do at YMCA Camp Sloper. We use it for swim lessons, boating, fishing, environmental classes and our annual Sloper Plunge Fundraiser.”

The dredging operation will see 125,000 yards of silt and sediment removed from the pond. The state will cover $3 million of the cost while the YMCA is fundraising for the remaining $500,000.

Other improvements will include new bathrooms, a new splash pad and a new pavilion. In addition to handicapped accessibility improvements in the bathrooms, they will also be connected to the town’s sewer line instead of the existing, 30-year-old septic system.

“We have had an incredible influx of camp enrollment over the past few years,” said Pooler. “We want to have the infrastructure in place to handle that many campers.”

Sloper encouraged the people to come out and show their support for the fundraiser.

“We’re hoping to make this the biggest Forever in Blue Jeans in history,” he said. “This is a time when the community and YMCA Camp Sloper need help more than ever.”

Tickets are $80. Sponsorship opportunities are also available and the YMCA is also accepting donations of raffle prizes.

For more information, to purchase tickets, or to become a sponsor, visit sccymca.org or call 860-628-5597.

Brian M. Johnson can be reached at 860-973-1806 or bjohnson@bristolpress.com.

Posted in New Britain Herald, Southington Herald on Thursday, 22 September 2022 14:24. Updated: Thursday, 22 September 2022 14:27.