Clambake raises money for Lloyd Center programs, buildings

By Douglas McCulloch | Jul 16, 2017
Photo by: Douglas McCulloch Staff ready the signature clams for the clambake.

The Lloyd Center has changes in the works, including a new welcome center, plans to revamp an existing building, and an increase in educational outreach programs.

To support these efforts, this year’s annual Lloyd Center clambake raised funds for a variety of initiatives at the center. About 450 tickets were sold to the event at Demarest Lloyd State Park on July 14. A silent auction also brought in money, although Lloyd Center staff are still tabulating the grand total.

Some of the funds raised through the clambake will go to an overhaul of the main building and the construction of a new welcome center. The center still needs $500,000 to fulfill its capital campaign funding.

According to architect and board member Kathryn Duff, work has already begun on the new welcome center, billed as a “living building” that gives back more resources than it consumes. The center also aims to rehabilitate its existing main building by performing  a “deep energy retrofit” of the building’s energy systems.

Funds also help support the center’s educational outreach programs, according to Executive Director Rachel Stronach. The center supports 15,000 students and 25,000 visits to the center annually.

Although the clambake has changed locations and grown in size over the years, the main mission remains the same.

Lloyd Center Research Director Mark Mello attended the very first clambake in 1986, then held at the Colonel Green estate at Round Hill. After several years there, the clambake moved to at Demarest Lloyd, but the very first year at the site ran into a major hurdle.

“There was a hellacious rain storm that year,” Mello recalled, remembering how the entire tent ended up flooded.

It was held briefly at Allens Pond Wildlife Sanctuary until nesting bobolinks necessitated a move back to its current location at Demarest Lloyd State Park.

“The tent keeps getting bigger to accommodate more people,” Mello said. “A lot of the same families come every year, and there’s more corporate sponsors now.”

Clambake chair Kelly Rebello and Suzanne Means. (Photo by: Douglas McCulloch)
Jason, Trinity, and Hannah Mailey. (Photo by: Douglas McCulloch)
Gregory and Christie Rodger take selfies on the beach. (Photo by: Douglas McCulloch)
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