The 2020 Gala Auction team is pleased to let you know that the BIC Center/WVBI 2020 Gala Auction is up and running online right here on the BIC Center website.  We’ve made that move because our traditional in-lobby Silent Auction and Gala Dinner and Live Auction simply are not practical given the need to exercise social distancing to keep everyone safe.  So, instead of crowding the Welcome Center with auction items, we’ve put them all online.  Why not have a look right now by visiting auction.biccenter.org?  You’ll find a variety of items up for auction from fine art to a trailer dolly.  We’ll be adding more items along the way including opportunities to bid on naming rights for the Theater, WVBI studios and more.  If you are interested in donating an item to be auctioned, we make that easy.  You can provide the information online or contact Ron Wojan, our 2020 Gala Auction co-chair, at ron.wojan@biccenter.org. You can get to the 2020 Gala Auction anytime by clicking on Auction in the menu at the top of the page.

If you’ve driven by the BIC Center recently  you’ve probably noticed a new arrival out front.  It’s a 2020 Tracker Pro-Guide fishing and sport boat that is the prize for our 2020 Raffle.  It’s a change up from prizes in the past years, but like the Kubota utility vehicles that we have raffled it is fully equipped and ideally suited for use on the waters of our archipelago (and beyond). Powered by a 60 hp Mercury four stroke engine, our prize is fully equipped for fishing and fun with live wells, rod and tackle storage, a custom trailer and cover, and more.  Full details are available at this link, where you can also purchase tickets online.  Tickets are also available at the BIC Center front desk or from any PABI board member.  Tickets are $50 each or three for $100. Contest rules are available at the BIC Center and at this link.

The BIC Center has now resumed all pre-shutdown activities including movies, which are back on the Big Screen with the Big Sound in the McDonough’s Market Theater.  Scroll down to see what’s showing.  For all operations, we are abiding by the rules imposed in the re-opening orders with limits on the number of people in the building, requirements for “family pod” based social distancing and masks required when moving about the Community Center.  We’ve established protocols for resuming Pickleball (when it must come inside for bad weather) and, by popular demand, have restarted the Arthritis Foundation Exercise Program.  We expect to start-up summer Yoga classes on schedule, albeit with more limited capacity and, perhaps, not everyone working on the stage as has been the case in years past.  In short, there are some differences, but we are doing our best to make the resources of the Community Center once again available to the community.  Our opening times are 9 to 5 Monday through Saturday and, starting tomorrow, June 21, Sundays 9 to 5.  Our summer performance events have been deferred until August with Dave Bennett expected here for Homecoming—subject to rules in place at that time.  We will keep you posted, but for now we are planning to proceed with our schedule.

Sadly, we were forced by the circumstances to cancel our annual Summer Solstice Dinner. That’s especially disappointing to us because it is our opportunity to thank donors and volunteers for their support of the Community Center and WVBI. We hope we will be able to provide a thank you dinner (served by our board, as is the tradition) later this summer or very early in the fall.  We will keep you posted.  Likewise, COVID-19 response has plans for our annual Gala Dinner are up in the air.  We have something special in the works even if we are unable to hold it in person.  Check back here for details or join or mailing list to get the latest word in your inbox.

We wish returning islanders a warm “Welcome Home” and look forward to seeing you at your Beaver Island Community Center when you are comfortable returning to see us. In the meantime, you can keep up to date by visiting our website at bicenter.org an by listening to WVBI, our community radio station, at 100.1 FM on the island, on your smart device with “Play WVBI,” and on the net worldwide at wvbi.net.