"Most people who succeed in the face of seemingly impossible conditions are people who simply don’t know how to quit." - Robert H. Schuller
Wow, when we begin to look back at all that The Nathan Chris Baker Foundation has done in 2014 we are overwhelmed with emotion as we think of the smiles we helped create and especially gratitude to each of you for making it all possible by supporting foundation. Since September of 2012, we have given over $110,000 to school playground construction and back into the local communities. Many people ask us – “What do you all do with the money and where does it go?” So, we thought we’d tell you all about the last year!
As a board, we started off our year by meeting as a team in January where we brainstormed and planned for the year ahead. The first annual Golf Tournament was scheduled for May and we formed a new committee called “Days of Greatness” at that board meeting. These meetings are always inspiring for us as a board and team to come together to review the past and the future as the foundation moves forward!
In February this year we received our US Trademark approval for our “Go Out. Be Great” phrase and later with much anticipation we also received our official 501(c)3 non-profit status from the IRS, that was effective as of November 2012!
The golf tournament turned out to be a huge success with over 120 golfers coming out to enjoy the beautiful weather and have some fun in memory of Nate. While there was no hole-in -one to win the new Chevy truck, many prizes were given out at the banquet over some very delicious food. Planning has begun for 2015, the 2nd Annual NCB Tournament will be held at Turf Valley on Friday, May 29, 2015!
Spring and summer remained just as busy with a night out at Chick-fil-A, a rock concert in June given by the JoeyDCares Rock Orchestra, and the opening of the Sandymount Elementary School playground in August. The Chick-fil-A night was a great opportunity to raise awareness of the Foundation’s efforts in the community. We were able to sell merchandise and meet more of you that support the Foundation during our evening at the Eldersburg Chic-fil-A! The JoeyDCares Orchestra Rock concert was attended by hundreds that came out to see their 38 people playing musical instruments and singing all different kinds of pop, rock and jazz music that the audience loved.
We also welcomed a partnership with A La Mode Boutique in Sykesville MD this spring to sell our Go Out. Be Great. merchandise. A La Mode generously donates back 100% of all the Foundation’s merchandise sales!
This year, for the first time, we walked in the Winfield parade in July with our board and a few supporters all dressed in Go Out. Be Great. gear! They braved the rain to pass out candy, GOBG bracelets, and GOBG tattoos to those in the crowds. This was a fun way to just be involved in the community and we thoroughly enjoyed it! Look for us there in 2015!
The Foundation’s main project in 2014 was to help Sandymount Elementary School in Finksburg, MD fund their new playground which costs over $80,000! The Nathan Chris Baker Foundation was overjoyed to be able to donate $22,000 to their playground project! In August, we attended the Sandymount playgrounds grand opening and presented them with a check for our donation! Another new playground for children to enjoy! So GREAT!
In the fall we held our 3rd Annual Nathan Chris Baker Fun Day at Hoppers with over 1000 kids and adults in attendance to remember Nate and have some fun with their family. The original Fun Day was started only 2 months after Nate’s death to raise money for Mechanicsville Elementary School’s playground and honor Nate and his love for fun and the outdoors. It has stood as the staple event for our foundation’s fund raising and a really special day to all of us who knew Nate and how much he loved to play and laugh with his friends and family. Thank you to each of you that sponsored, donated to the silent auction, helped by volunteering, and for all of you that bring your families to attend! If you’ve never come… you should! It’s a GREAT day!
The next weekend we also had a booth at the Sykesville Fall Festival on Main Street in Sykesville. It’s always great to see our community come out, rain or shine, to socialize and shop in Sykesville. Our annual Stacy Hart Photography fundraiser was also in October and another huge success.
The Days of Greatness program was designed to help families who have someone struggling with a hardship and/or illness and alleviate that pain away for just one day. We were honored to help two families in 2014 to have a day with their families and forget about their daily struggles and enjoy what makes them happy. We were thrilled to help a 3rd family by providing their Christmas and taking that financial burden off their shoulders so they could spend time with each other and enjoy every moment. The feedback from each family and their friends was incredible on how uplifting it was to their entire family to not have to worry about anything except enjoying the moment with the ones they loved so dearly. We are excited and looking forward to providing many more Days of Greatness in 2015!
Throughout the year we also formed teams for many races to raise awareness for the Foundation while inspiring others to Go Out & Be Great. This year alone, we organized teams to run in Annapolis, MD for the Zooma 10k; in Fredericksburg, VA for the Historic Half, 10K, & 5K race; and a huge team run at the Howard County Police Pace 5k in the fall. We also had a Tough-Mudder team run in Richmond VA and a Ragnar Team run from Cumberland MD to Washington DC. These races help inspire many runners to challenge themselves with something new but also raise awareness.
We have also helped many individuals and families throughout 2014 with care packages and grants for sports programs.
Our final donation of the year was $10,000 to Runnymeade Elementary School in Westminster, MD to help them get started on funding a new playground for 2015. We are looking forward to seeing their hard work over the next year as they bring their playground to fruition.
We are very thankful to so many people and businesses in the Carroll and Howard County areas for your unwavering support throughout 2014 that has allowed us to help so many individuals and families in need to Go Out and Be Great. We thank you from the bottom or our hearts for your time, donations, prayers, and overwhelming support at all our events and look forward to an exciting year of helping many individuals, families, and schools in 2015.
So Goodbye to an amazing 2014 and we are ready to say Hello to GREAT things in 2015! Keep following our blog and follow the links at the top right of our website to sign up for newsletters and to follow us on Facebook to stay up to date on all the happenings for The Nathan Chris Baker Foundation.
Happy New Year from the entire Go Out Be Great Team!
The NCBF Board of Directors