After 50 years, the Kiwanis Club of Ocean Shores has disbanded. However, several members are forming a new 501-c3 nonprofit group under the name of North Beach Youth Foundation to continue the legacy started back in 1969.
Local Kiwanis acting president Miles Longenbaugh reflected on the Kiwanis’ history locally, noting that members raised money for the youth of the area in various ways over the years, such as Saturday gambling at the Ocean Shores Inn, carnivals, selling Christmas trees, hanging flags at participating businesses, rummage sales, garage sales and auctions.
The monies raised gave many scholarships to graduating seniors at North Beach High School, sent many third-graders to swimming classes, bought mats for the wrestling team, a scoreboard for the basketball team, sponsored a Little League baseball team, presented a check to Ocean Shores elementary for an accelerated reading program and sponsored student of the month in the grade school and junior high, among many projects.
The past few years, Longenbaugh explained, “Membership has dwindled considerably and we are unable to meet the requirements of the Kiwanis International. We will be phasing out the club, but this doesn’t mean the scholarships, swim lessons, children’s Christmas party at the convention center and such will be ending.”
For example, he expects the new North Beach Youth Foundation will be able to resume the former Kiwanis scholarship program, possibly by 2021.
“Without the support of the entire community these efforts would’ve never happened,” said longtime Kiwanis member Don Scott, who, along with his wife, Pat, continues to head the Christmas party project.
“Thank you all for supporting the Kiwanis and therefore our youth. We are looking forward to your support in the future as we move on to new things. Thank you again Ocean Shores, for a great run.”