Summer Sessions 2017

Bringing the Peaceable Kingdom to a Turbulent World

Summer Sessions 2017
July 23–29, Silver Bay, New York


Welcome to New York Yearly Meeting Summer Sessions 2017


Message from the Clerk

I continue to be delighted and inspired by the community of Friends in New York Yearly Meeting. When my energy flags I dip into the State of the Meeting reports that are arriving at the Yearly Meeting office, and am renewed; one concludes, “We seek to be centered, open-hearted, and clear-headed. And to be ready to discern and bear witness to Truth in our troubled world.” I am inspired by the energy in our committees and working groups, and grateful when an e-mail appears in my inbox that answers the question in the hymn “Is it I, Lord?” with a sometimes tentative but always deeply faithful, “Here I am, Lord,” going where led into service and action in the world.

This summer, we gather for Summer Sessions to support one another in bringing the peaceable kingdom to a turbulent world. We welcome our plenary speaker, Nadine Hoover from Friends Peace Teams, who will speak on “Peace is Possible! Friends’ Testimony and Witness to Peace Today.” We will have many opportunities for worship and work. Our usual worship sharing groups will meet each morning, the highlight of the Summer Sessions experience for many. We will share time in nourishing extended worship during Meeting for Discernment. We will labor in worship in Meeting for Worship with a Concern for Business, listening deeply for God’s will for us as a gathered body, while the children and youth listen for the movement of the Spirit in their Junior Yearly Meeting groups. And we will all have time for rejuvenating play, shared meals, singing on the Inn porch, the Junior Yearly Meeting bonfire, and so much more. We particularly welcome newcomers to this experience! I’ll be on the Inn porch when you arrive Sunday and will host a tea and bedtime snack Wednesday evening, open to all but especially for mid-week newcomers.

We have much to offer the world and to offer each other. I am blessed to be among you. When the world seems full of impenetrable prose, I am led by a State of the Meeting report to the words of a Quaker poet, Stan Searl, who came to read to their Meeting:

Oh love,
How it grows
In the palm
Of the hand.

In peace and love,
Lucinda Antrim, Clerk, NYYM


Important Information about Summer Sessions

"Bringing the Peaceable Kingdom to a Turbulent World"

The wolf shall live with the lamb, the leopard shall lie down with the kid, the calf and the lion and the fatling together, and a little child shall lead them. The cow and the bear shall graze, their young shall lie down together; and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. The nursing child shall play over the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put its hand on the adder’s den. They will not hurt or destroy on all my holy mountain; for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea. Isaiah 11:6-9, New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

This year’s Summer Sessions theme is "Bringing the Peaceable Kingdom to a Turbulent World" — in keeping with the fifth priority in the Statement of Leadings and Priorities approved by NYYM in 2014: "We Envision a Yearly Meeting That Supports and Amplifies Our Witness." With this theme, we will focus primarily on three areas: eco-justice, social justice, and peace. Our schedule for the week offers many opportunities for Friends to present their work in these areas. Starting with attending our plenary session on Monday night, with Nadine Hoover speaking on “Peace is Possible! Friends’ Testimony and Witness to Peace Today.”

As in the past, there are at least two opportunities to help Friends attend Summer Sessions and both are found on your registration form. First, we offer an option to donate to the Equalization Fund, from which Friends can then request assistance. Second, there is an option to help pay for our littlest members (the babies!) to attend Silver Bay’s Morning Program. We have found that, when Friends are given these opportunities to help others, they are both conscientious and generous. In addition, Sessions Committee is moving forward with a recommendation to adopt a “Pay as Led” process for our 2018 Summer Sessions. Please see our work and documents online (link to Pay as Led section here).

Melanie-Claire Mallison
Sessions Committee, clerk



For a broad view at the week's schedule, you can view or download the Week-at-a-Glance in PDF format at:


Steps To Summer Sessions

  • Read the Summer Sessions pages of this Spark issue carefully and be sure to read additional important information on the website.
  • Decide on your arrival and departure dates.
  • Choose your housing preferences. Click here to view or download a PDF of the room rates
  • Register, either online (see below) or using the form included in Spark.
    • Note that when you register, you agree to follow all of the participant expectations and agreements listed below.
  • Pay your registration fee online in the online registration form, or mail your payment to the NYYM office along with your completed registration form from May's issue of Spark.
  • When Silver Bay YMCA sends you an acknowledgment of your registration, they will include a request for a 25% room deposit. Be sure to pay that by the date they request to ensure your room is reserved for you.
  • All JYM registrations must include a completed medical form signed by a parent (and brought to JYM Registration on Sunday or upon arrival at Silver Bay). This form is available online at
  • In addition, parents of children 0-5 are encouraged to complete the Silver Bay Morning Program forms, even if you only use the Morning Program once over the week. Find those forms at


Helpful People for NYYM Sessions

  • Conference Services Liaison: Martha Gurvich
  • Display Requests: Karen Snare
  • Financial Assistance: Helen Garay Toppins
  • Food-Service Coordinator: Martha Gurvich
  • General Scheduling & Evaluations: Melanie-Claire Mallison
  • Golf Cart Coordinator: Carol Mallison
  • Greetings to Absent Friends: Kate Lawson
  • Healing Center: Buffy Curtis
  • Interest Group Coordinators: Martha Gurvich & Helen Garay Toppins
  • JYM Program Coordinators: Dawn Pozzi & Ellie Rosenberg
  • Microphone Runner Coordinator: Ann-Marie Scheidt
  • Special Needs: Martha Gurvich
  • Tagless Tag Sale Coordinator: Cynthia Cornelius
  • The Quaker Update Editor: Sarah Way
  • Welcome Table Coordinator: Jeffrey Aaron
  • Whisper Buddies: Jillian Smith
  • Worship Sharing Groups: David Herendeen & Sunfire Kazmayer
  • All Registration Questions: Helen Garay Toppins,; 212-673-5750; NYYM Office, 15 Rutherford Pl., New York City NY 10003


Worship at Summer Sessions

NYYM Summer Sessions is an opportunity to worship and share with the Peaceable Community. Everyone is invited to attend Opening Worship on Sunday evening, Community Worship each morning, Meetings for Discernment on Tuesday, and Closing Worship on Saturday. Need time for quiet reflection during the course of your day? Waiting Worship is available all day, all week, in the tent marked “Unprogrammed Worship” on the lawn in front of the auditorium. Silver Bay evening chapel Vespers offer an ecumenical worship opportunity, with Friends from our body offering devotions. Check the daily schedule in your Program for times and locations for these gatherings and for Meeting for Worship with a Concern for Business.

Worship Sharing provides a daily opportunity to worship together in small groups, setting the tone for other activities as the day unfolds. Sharing insights, experiences, and prayer together refreshes the spirit. Worship Sharing groups meet Monday through Friday from 9:30-10:30am. Your participation and contribution—opening up to be a channel for the Holy Spirit—would be invaluable. General Worship Sharing will be offered along with a number of special groups. Please choose your preferred Worship Sharing group when you register for Summer Sessions. Be sure to check the Worship Sharing lists on the Inn Porch for your group assignment and location.

Community Worship; We'll come together for semi-programmed, multigenerational Community Worship every morning in the auditorium, from 8:45-9:15am. Everyone is invited to participate in singing, stories and sharing, and waiting worship to ground us for the day. At the rise of this worship, we'll also announce what is happening that day in business and junior yearly meetings, before heading to JYM and worship groups.

Meeting for Discernment; All are welcome to the Meetings for Discernment being held on Tuesday at Summer Sessions, with a morning, afternoon, and evening session. Meetings for Discernment are times of extended worship focused around queries. Please join us for what is likely to be an amazing worship-filled experience. The information online will include the queries to consider for this summer’s Meeting for Discernment.


Plenary Speaker, Nadine Hoover

Nadine Clare Hoover (Alfred), Director of Conscience Studio and Power of Goodness, and Coordinator of Friends Peace Teams in Asia West Pacific, is our plenary speaker, bringing us a message on the topic, “Peace is Possible! Friends’ Testimony and Witness to Peace Today.”

Having worked with thousands of people on various continents to recover from war and preserve peace in their hearts, homes and communities, Nadine brings a bold, vital message that peace is possible. Nadine raises up simple, practical tools that have made Friends peace work so consequential historically, while also noting how much we have learned, even in the last decade. She calls us to place our faith in the power of the Living Spirit to allow love and integrity to guide our lives, preparing us for this work. She describes the operating dynamics of transforming power, trauma resiliency, developmental play, liberation from oppression, and the liberty of conscience we experience when we allow the Living Spirit to guide our private and public lives. She can illuminate the minimal structures that have made Quaker practice so powerful in the past, and a few key steps that could revitalize our faith and action in the future. Nadine calls us to stand together against war and violence, because without safe haven, nothing else matters.

Nadine Hoover began attending Alfred Friends Meeting in 1966. She attended Powell House and Philadelphia work camps as a young person, and graduated from George School and Friends World College, receiving a doctoral degree in International Development and Education from Florida State University and a bachelor’s degree in Political Economy from Friends World College.

Nadine helped establish Tallahassee Friends Meeting, served as Secretary of Southeastern Yearly Meeting and Friends General Conference Bookstore Manager. As an Alternatives to Violence Project (AVP) facilitator since 1978, Nadine works to identify universal practices for preserving cultures of peace. She established Conscience Studio to publish supporting materials and offer related training; and she carries forward the Power of Goodness Global Story Pool on nonviolence and reconciliation begun by FGC, expanding the stories, children's art and nonviolence training in collaboration with Peacebuilding UK. She coordinates Friends Peace Teams in Asia West Pacific visiting with a concern for peace in Indonesia as well as others in the region, and supports peace education programs including Peace Place and the Friends House in Central Java. She is a conscientious objector to war and paying for war, and calls Friends to let our faith guide us in standing up together to call for an end to war.

Nadine has identified an ecology of activities that have made peace possible in the most unlikely places, from refugee to jihadist to professional communities, building skills in transforming power, trauma resiliency, developmental play, liberation from oppression, liberty of conscience and discernment. Stories from Friends peace work in the world illustrate the power of Quaker faith and practice lived out through the politics of peace, a politics of no enemies and no sides. With confidence and conviction, she confirms Paul Chappell's call that the time has come to make war illegal, and Dahlan’s call that until we make peace with the earth, we will not make peace with each other.


Bible Study at Summer Sessions

Because of the new Community Worship in the morning, Bible Study has been moved back to the early evening; 6:45-7:30 p.m. on Monday-Thursday (note the locations carefully in your Program!). This year’s Bible Study Leader is Christopher Sammond, a member of Poplar Ridge Monthly Meeting. For over twenty-five years he has led workshops and retreats in a wide variety of Friends' contexts. He is trained in spiritual direction and the spiritual formation of whole congregations and has served as a chaplain in hospice, hospital, and drug and alcohol treatment center settings. He carries a concern for faithfulness, and has traveled extensively in the ministry. Christopher currently serves New York Yearly Meeting as its General Secretary and lives in central New York with his wife Barbara, their dog, Gabe, and cats Harriet and Lil.

We seek to build the Beloved Community. At same time, we are often blind to the reality that we live in Empire. Empire is the air we breathe, which makes it difficult to see. Walter Brueggemann characterizes Empire as living “… by numbness. Empires, in their militarism, expect numbness about the human cost of war. Corporate economies expect blindness to the cost in terms of poverty and exploitation. Governments and societies of domination go to great lengths to keep the numbness intact.” It is the function of Empire that we remain unconscious of its existence and its workings.


The book of Esther is an exploration of Empire and its workings, writ large, almost as though viewed through a carnival mirror. It’s easier to see how Empire operates in Persia of 2500 years ago than it is to see through our innate blindness to our own culture, reinforced by the numbness of Empire. Esther also gives us a window into how faithful engagement with Empire can bring surprising results.

This Bible Study will explore how we, today, are enmeshed in Empire, and how much that contrasts with Jesus’ teaching about how to live out the Kingdom of God, the Reign of Unity, here, now. We will look at how we often mistakenly engage the tools of Empire in our efforts to build the Beloved Community, and how we might do that differently.



Interest Group Proposals

Once again, we are offering time and space for Interest Groups (IG) at Summer Sessions. It is important for IGs to relate to our theme and/or the NYYM Leadings and Priorities in general. IGs will be held on Tuesday at 1:45-3:15pm and 7:45-9:15pm, and on Thursday from 7:45-9:15pm. Complete the online form at and submit it, no later than July 1, 2017, so that we have time to make arrangements for your group needs. If more requests are received than we have space for, those that best speak to our theme, leadings, and priorities will be given preference. If you have any questions, email Martha Gurvich at

  • ROOTS OF INJUSTICE; Seeds of Change: Towards Right Relationship with Native Peoples
  • This 2-hour exercise traces the historic and ongoing impacts of the Doctrine of Discovery, the 15th-century justification for European subjugation of non-Christian peoples. Our goal is to raise our level of knowledge and concern about these impacts, recognize them in ourselves and our institutions, and explore how we can begin to take actions toward “right relationship.” This experiential workshop is being offered for the first time to the Yearly Meeting during a double session Interest Group on Wednesday of Summer Sessions. The workshop requires attendance of a minimum of 20 attenders ages 12 and above. Please consider coming to support this work of awareness and radical change, for yourself, our Meetings and the world. For further information contact Liseli Haines and Buffy Curtis.


Agenda Items

If you have items for the NYYM business agenda, please contact the appropriate coordinating committee clerk: John Cooley, General Services; Peter Phillips, Ministry; Jennifer Perry, Nurture; Mary Eagleson, Witness; or Lucinda Antrim, clerk of NYYM,; or the NYYM office, Contact information for the coordinating committee clerks is in the Yearbook, which should be available at your meeting.


NYYM Committee Work and Display Space

Summer Sessions is a wonderful time for anyone connected to a NYYM committee to gather do their work, and share information with the YM via several avenues — inviting folks to their committee meetings, reporting during Meeting for Business, and offering materials at a display space, to name a few. Information will be emailed to all NYYM committee clerks regarding committee meeting needs. To reserve display space, please download the form at and email to Karen Snare at


Whisper Buddies

Whisper Buddies is a new mentorship program where those who want to learn about Quaker process get to know those who feel they have experience to share. At the Monday afternoon planning meeting, we’ll gather to share interests and choose buddies, with an emphasis on equality and friendship, who will then work together to choose which business sessions and/or committee meetings they will attend together. JYMers will need a signed permission slip from their parent or guardian if they choose to meet with their Whisper Buddy during JYM sessions. The best part of this program is that it will happen in real time via passing notes and whispering. Continuing the process during meal time discussions is also encouraged. Whisper Buddies will enhance the experience of being part of our yearly meeting for our youth, our Young Adult Friends, and our whole community.

Download the Whisper Buddies Flyer at


Participant Expectations and NYYM Agreements

We come to Yearly Meeting sessions to create a Blessed Community in which to discern and carry out the work that the Divine leads us to. In order to be fully and authentically present to each other as a faith community, we have agreements that guide our behavior toward each other and towards the whole body, ensuring safety and comfort for all of us, starting with living into our Testimonies of integrity, simplicity, peace, and equality. We have long agreed that our time together will be free of alcohol regardless of the policy of our host facility, and the use of illegal drugs is unwelcome and illegal, no matter where we gather. Those among us who struggle with addictions must find a safe and supportive community among Friends.

By registering for Summer Sessions, Friends are committing to honor these Testimonies and agreements, and we are all, younger and older, expected to abide by them. Parents and guardians are asked to speak with their youngsters about their behavior, and everyone attending Summer Sessions is asked to take the agreements seriously. We’ll have a poster stating our agreements on the Inn porch, if you’d like to sign!

Given these agreements and the rules of staying on Silver Bay campus, Friends must restrict their tobacco smoking to those areas designated by Silver Bay (smoking is not allowed in guest rooms, for instance), and must refrain from the use of alcohol and illegal substances. If you engage in these activities, you (and possibly your family or guardian) may be asked to leave Summer Sessions.

Finally, because even a blessed community experiences conflict, the Conflict Transformation Committee (CTC) and the Abuse Investigation Committee (AIC) will be available all week. The members of the committees will be introduced at the Sunday Opening Worship and listed in the first Daily Minute available on Sunday. If you witness something or hear about something that you are uncomfortable addressing yourself, please seek out a member of CTC or AIC as soon as possible. Both committees will make it a priority to ensure complete confidentiality in all aspects of their work. A CTC member or the General Secretary (on behalf of the AIC) will report back to you on your concern, and also to the community if the AIC determines that to be necessary.

  1. All Attenders are expected to:
    • If 18 years or older, register yourself and dependents with New York Yearly Meeting by the registration deadline, to facilitate the YM’s logistical planning.
    • Attend the activities of New York Yearly Meeting, including but not limited to Opening Worship, Community Worship in the morning, Worship Sharing, Meetings for Worship with a Concern for Business, committee meetings, JYM events, and Closing Worship;
    • Observe safety precautions, such as swimming only when a life guard is on duty, never swimming or hiking alone;
    • Honor the NYYM agreements and expectations, keeping in mind also New York State laws regarding the use of illegal drugs and the legal age for drinking alcohol (see the first paragraph of our agreements).
    • Parent(s), guardians, or sponsors for children under 18 years old assume responsibility for the safety and well-being of that person. Together, adults and youth should commit to a specific bedtime and at least once-daily check-ins.
  2. Attenders under 18 years old are expected to:
    • Register with Junior Yearly Meeting in the company of their parent, legal guardian, or sponsor;
    • Cluster with (sleep in a room near to) their parent(s), guardian, or sponsor;
    • Have a valid medical consent form signed by a parent or guardian (medical forms are available on line or can be mailed to JYM registrants upon request to JYM);
    • Honor the NYYM agreements and expectations, keeping in mind New York State laws regarding the use of illegal drugs and the legal age of drinking alcohol (see the first paragraph of our agreements).


Special Events at Summer Sessions

There are three events that raise money exclusively for Powell House and the Sharing Fund. These are the Fun(d) Fair, the Tagless Tag Sale, and Café Night. The Fun(d) Fair is organized and sponsored by Junior Yearly Meeting, and includes games and refreshments available with the purchase of Fun(d) Fair Tickets. During that time, we also hold a Tagless Tag Sale. If you have sale items (new or used items in good shape) to donate, please bring them to Summer Sessions with you and there will be more information in the first Quaker Update on where to place your donations. (Tax-deduction receipts for in-kind charitable contributions will be available upon request.) Folks are encouraged to showcase their talents during Café Night, also organized and sponsored by Junior Yearly Meeting. Bring your instruments and hula hoops and join the fun! For all three events, it’s a good idea to bring a stash of dollar bills!

Often during Summer Sessions, a committee or group that is Quaker or Quaker-related asks to hold an Ice Cream Social either to raise funds or to inform conference participants of the committee’s work. Ice Cream Socials must be approved by Sessions Committee, on a case-by-case basis, via a request sent to the clerk of the committee. Of course, all costs for the social must be paid for by the requesting committee or group; as long as we meet at Silver Bay Association, ice cream and other food items must be provided by SBA. The clerk of Sessions, along with the Conference Services Liaison, will work with the requesting committee or group on the details if an Ice Cream Social is requested.

Then, if folks sign up to participate, there will be a Quaker Crafts Show. At that event, anyone connected to a Quaker-related cause may work with the Conference Services Liaison to request a table and then actively sell items. While 100% of any proceeds made during the Quaker Crafts event may be kept by the seller, it is a kindness to consider making a donation to any NYYM fund (Annual Appeal, Equalization Fund, Oakwood Friends School, Powell House, Sharing Fund, etc.).

Finally, the NYYM Development Committee will be hosting several events at summer sessions where Friends can engage with members of the Development Committee to explore the spiritual dimension of money, the joy of giving, and how their time, talent or treasure could better support the vital ministries of our yearly meeting.


Disability Concerns at Silver Bay

Friends who indicate special needs on their registration form will receive a form from the NYYM office requesting specific information on your disability. This information is only shared with Silver Bay as needed to find appropriate accommodation. There will also be opportunities for Friends to be special-needs volunteers. Recommend your family and friends! A checkbox for volunteers is on the registration form – if you expect to take advantage of golf carts for transportation at Silver Bay, be sure you’ve recommended to a friend, or two, or three, to sign up as a Golf Cart Driver!

Housing. Five mobility-accessible sleeping rooms, with bathrooms, are reserved in the Inn for those using wheelchairs (and their roommates). One-tenth of the rooms in the Inn will be reserved for people who, for any reason, find it physically difficult to room elsewhere. These rooms will be held only until July 1 and then will be released for general availability.

If you have a disability or illness that makes it hard for you to climb hills or steps, please make sure that you sign up early and request one of the reserved rooms. Financial assistance is available from the Equalization Fund.

Friends who are unable to transfer themselves to and from wheelchair/bed, etc., and require special assistance with dressing, bathing, or other personal needs must arrange this assistance on their own and the person assisting them must stay in their room. The caregiver must be in attendance for the length of the stay of the person they are helping. Silver Bay will offer a special reduced rate for the person assisting.

Worship and Meetings. The people who set up the worship-sharing groups need to know if you have hearing or physical problems so that note takers can be provided or accessible locations allocated. Please indicate on your registration form if you require such assistance.

Please bring any disability concerns to our Conference Services Liaison, Martha Gurvich.


Food Service at Silver Bay

Friends, please remember: you must be wearing your name badge to enter the dining hall. Lost badges incur a $2 replacement charge.

Meals begin with dinner on Sunday evening and conclude with breakfast on Saturday. If you plan to arrive at Silver Bay early enough to have lunch on Sunday, you must make arrangements with Silver Bay YMCA in advance to purchase this meal; it is not part of the conference package. Likewise, if you intend to stay through Saturday lunch, you must arrange and pay for Saturday lunch at the Front Desk by the Thursday of the conference.

If you are a vegetarian, please indicate this on your registration form. Please see the NYYM website for additional information regarding special diets, special food storage and dining hall hours of operations.

Silver Bay will provide standard and vegetarian menu choices for each meal. Vegetarian meals include eggs, milk, and cheese, but no meat or fish. Silver Bay cannot accommodate “specialty” diets. Lunch and dinner both have a full salad bar. For those with other special dietary needs, we recommend that you bring your own food Cooking facilities for those with special dietary needs (though not for campers) will be available in Paine Hall—1st floor off rotunda. The Silver Bay cooks will not add salt to either the regular food or the vegetarian food. Salt shakers will be available on the tables.

The dining hall opens fifteen minutes each day before the stated meal times. This is to help ease the way for families with small children and Friends who are physically challenged, along with their helpers, in the hope these Friends will have the time and space to get their meals and settle in before the larger group steps into the line. Please allow these Friends to go to the front of the line at all meal times and remind them to feel comfortable stepping up. We also encourage all of the community to lend a hand to anyone who might seem overwhelmed and in need of help carrying plates, bowls, etc., getting drinks, or navigating the busy dining hall. Mealtimes can be stressful for the youngest among us, our physically challenged friends, and their families and helpers. Your kindness will be deeply appreciated.

The Food Service Coordinator is Martha Gurvich.


Healing Work at Summer Sessions

Buffy Curtis and Healing Center Support Committee

This year at Summer Sessions, The Healing Center will again be located in Sproul Pavilion and will have some regularly scheduled hours for healing work. Our hours are dependent upon the corporate body schedule so please remain flexible. We are inviting Friends who work in the healing arts or who are interested in helping with healing work to join us! We are also looking for volunteers who would support the work by greeting and scheduling. Skills can include energy work (Healing Touch, Reiki, Therapeutic Touch, etc.), massage, Rolfing, craniosacral, spiritual counseling/direction, or other areas of healing work. Practitioner volunteers should have training with qualifications or experience relevant to their practice. Friends who are interested or perhaps feeling "called" to the work are welcome to “buddy” with other practitioners as possible.

Additional needs are for people to meet and greet; helping to match those desiring work with the practitioners available. Those wishing to hold the space in prayer are welcome indeed. It is yet another extension of worship, after all!

Friends who might be interested in becoming coordinators would be welcome and definitely appreciated.

Please contact Buffy Curtis,, 508-566-6639 (cell), to offer your assistance, make suggestions, or let us know what else you need. We will meet with volunteers on Sunday night of Summer Sessions to organize and clarify details. Notices of the days and times will be posted and in the Quaker Update. With gratitude for holding this ministry in your care, we look forward to hearing from you and to seeing you at the Healing Center.


12-Step Meetings

12-Step Meetings will be held every morning at 7:15 a.m. Also, every evening; 9:30 p.m. on Sunday, Tuesday and Friday, 6:45pm on Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday. Check your Program for location. These meetings are under the care of Nurture Coordinating Committee, but they need to hear from people willing to facilitate one or more of the meetings. To volunteer, please contact Roseann Press at


Golf Cart Drivers Needed

Silver Bay is a beautiful place, but for some Friends, it is challenging to walk up and down the hills and from one meeting place to another. As in previous years, we will have golf carts to help Friends get around. We need volunteers to drive the carts. Are you 21 or older with a valid, clean driver’s license? Those are the requirements to volunteer as a part-time golf cart driver. Driving the cart is easy, fun, a great way to serve the community, and a wonderful way to get to know Friends of all ages you might not otherwise meet.

If 40 NYYM Friends each volunteer to drive a golf cart for two hours during the week, we will be able to maintain the level of golf-cart service we want to offer. To commit to driving for two hours or more, please check the box on the registration form, contact the NYYM office at, or contact the Golf Cart Coordinator, Carol Mallison, 607-564-3396.


The Quaker Update

Formerly the Daily Minute, this newsletter will now be published at Silver Bay via print and email at 9pm daily. Submissions are due at 5pm at the YM conference office in the Inn or via email at Sarah Way is the editor.


On Your Way to Silver Bay

Powell House, NYYM’s Conference & Retreat Center, is opening up Pitt Hall, the ACC, and the campground for the weekend! If you are on your way to New York Yearly Meeting’s annual sessions held at Silver Bay and want a break; come!! We’d love to see you. It will be a weekend filled with visiting, playing ultimate Frisbee, blowing bubbles, singing, playing board games, quilting, swimming, and even doing work projects. In other words, think of it as a summer “Celebrate Family & Friends.” We’ll also have extended worship in Pitt Hall for both Saturday morning and late afternoon. So, find your space on the grounds of Powell House; mix it up; enjoy. You’re welcome to come for half the weekend or all of it. Just let us know when you’re coming, so we’ll have enough food. or 518-794-8811

Adirondack Friends Meeting is about one hour south of Silver Bay in South Glens Falls. They extend an invitation to Friends to visit meeting for worship on Sunday, July 23—a wonderful way to extend your knowledge of NYYM Friends and add a worshipful break to your journey. Worship is programmed and begins at 10:30 am; refreshments and sharing follow. The meeting is at 27 Saratoga Ave., South Glens Falls NY 12803. For more info, contact Jodi Distefano, or 518-232-6329.



Staying On Campus

Room Reservations with Silver Bay Association

The Yearly Meeting office will send your reservation forms to Silver Bay YMCA, which will acknowledge your room reservation and request a nonrefundable room deposit of 25 percent per person, to be applied to your final bill. Do not send room deposits to the NYYM office. The balance of the Silver Bay charges must be paid at the SB desk before you leave. Silver Bay cannot guarantee housing or food for those who do not preregister and pay their room deposit by Silver Bay’s deadline.

Preference for rooms is given to those who stay for the entire week. Rooms are assigned in the order in which requests are received. We advise that you register early.

All rooms are typically rated for double occupancy. Beds for children may be added to some of the larger rooms. If you require a single room, you may want to consider off-campus accommodations. The actual beds are twin-size. A few double-size beds are available in the Inn, Bayview, and Trinity. If you would like a double-size bed, please indicate that on your registration form.

Depending on when you register, no rooms may be available at your requested price, so you may be assigned to a room at a higher price. You will receive prior notice if this is necessary. Room reservations will not be held after 6:00 pm on the day of your expected arrival unless the room is completely prepaid or you call Silver Bay to notify them of your late arrival. If you need to cancel, call Silver Bay (518-543-8833, ext. 350) so your room can be reassigned.

Silver Bay room check-in begins at 4:00 pm on Sunday, July 23. Checkout time is 11:00 am daily, with the conference ending on Saturday, July 29. Luggage can be left in designated areas after checking out. Those not out of their rooms by 11:00 am will be charged for an extra day. No refunds are issued for early departures, unless arrangements are made prior to check-in.

All rates are per person (double occupancy) and include a 5% gratuity. Suites in Bayview and the Inn have a surcharge of $25 per day, in addition to all other charges, if occupied by fewer than three persons. The half-conference rate is for those attending from Sunday, July 23, to Wednesday, July 26, or Wednesday, July 26, to Saturday, July 29. The extra day rates are for those who wish to arrive early on Saturday, July 22. Silver Bay does not guarantee that you will be assigned to the same room on the extra day.

Clustering (staying in rooms that are close together) is required of all parents / guardians / sponsors and the children they are supervising. Send in your registrations together.

No one should go to Silver Bay YMCA without an advance registration with New York Yearly Meeting and assurance from Silver Bay that there is room for you.

Click here to view or download a PDF of the room rates.

ALERT to Guests needing a Roommate

Silver Bay YMCA will make every effort to find you a roommate, but cannot guarantee to find one. Guests will be less likely to incur a single-room rate if they make their own contact for rooming together. Silver Bay will inform registrants one week prior to arrival if they are unable to find a roommate. All guests are responsible to make full payment for the period for which they register regardless of their actual length of stay; thus a remaining roommate would not be financially responsible for the early, unplanned departure of another roommate (since there is no refund for early departure). A guest who has no roommate registered will be charged for the single rate. To be sure there are no misunderstandings, it is best for roommates to register at the same time, noting they are roommates on the registration form, and check in together at Silver Bay when they arrive.


Staying Off Campus

Lean-to and Tent Camping at Silver Bay and Rogers Rock State Park

Are you a camper or camping family? Silver Bay Association specifically reserves for NYYM use their lean-tos and tent platforms. Friends experienced in woodland camping may wish to consider the Silver Bay YMCA Adirondack-style lean-tos on Ryan’s Ridge, a 15-minute hike up Woodside Trail on the west side of Route 9. There are two sturdy lean-tos, picnic tables, and a privy. There is no water at the site, but campers may use the bathrooms and showers in the basement of Fisher Gymnasium. Each lean-to accommodates four or five people. Rental for each person is $28 per night, which includes the daily off-campus day membership and allows campers to use all of the other Silver Bay facilities. Meals must be purchased separately.

Closer to campus are two raised wooden tent platforms on a knoll behind the gym. Each platform is 20 by 20 feet, large enough for a family tent or two smaller ones. The rental rate is also $28 per person, per night. Bathrooms with showers are available in the nearby gym basement.

Smoking is not permitted in either Silver Bay camping area. Please respect the camping community by being courteous with shared spaces and observing quiet time.

Rogers Rock State Park, north on Route 9 near Ticonderoga, is familiar to many Summer Sessions campers from past years. Use or call 800-456-2267 for information and reservations. Previous campers suggest asking for sites 226 – 236, and reserve early.


Off-Campus and Day Registrants

Friends camping, commuting, or taking rooms off-campus are asked to give their addresses for the week on the registration form. Otherwise, please supply this information when registering at Silver Bay when you arrive. Name badges are required for all attenders. Lost badges incur a $2 replacement charge.

People staying on campus pay for the use of facilities through their lodging costs; those living off-campus (including lean-tos and tent platforms), and daily commuters pay for the use of the facilities through a day-use fee, paid when checking in at Silver Bay when you arrive. This fee allows use of the facilities, including the swimming areas, gym, art center, and boathouse.

(Please note that these fees are on top of the NYYM registration fee.)


Day-Use Fees for Use of Facilities for Off-Campus and Day Guests

  • Per Day:
    • $25 per adult
    • $18 per youth (6-17) *
    • $42 per family
  • Per Week:
    • $146 per adult
    • $103 per youth (6-17) *
    • $251 per family

(* Children five and under pay no day-use fee, when accompanied by a paying adult guest. “Family” is defined as members who share a household and live together as a family unit.)


Meals for Off-Campus and Day Guests

Meal tickets for the Silver Bay dining room can be purchased at the Inn front desk in advance of desired meals. A name badge must be worn and a meal ticket presented at the dining room. The cost per meal is:

  • $14 breakfast
  • $14 lunch
  • $19 dinner

Youth, ages 6-17, are half the adult meal rate. Children five and under eat for no charge when accompanied by a paying adult.

If you intend to buy meal tickets when you arrive at Silver Bay, please indicate this on your registration form.


Fundraising Policy for NYYM Sessions

Contact Melanie-Claire Mallison, Sessions Committee clerk, with any concerns (

First, please note the following information from NYYM Financial Services Committee:

“All committees, groups or persons undertaking fundraising or spending within the Yearly Meeting, to the extent consistent with the directions and limits of any gifts or trust instruments, will coordinate their fundraising and spending activities with the Financial Services Committee so as to jointly further the implementation of the Leadings and Priorities.”

As we gather in faith to conduct the business of New York Yearly Meeting (NYYM), it is with care and consideration that any fundraising is undertaken during our sessions, Spring, Summer and Fall. Anyone connected to a Quaker-related cause (e.g. AFSC, AVP, BQEF, ARCH, FCNL, Friends Peace Teams, NYYM Annual Appeals, and Quaker schools, meetinghouses and conference centers) is welcome to request display space to inform participants of their work and needs. Display space requests are sometimes received for non-Quaker-related causes and those will be decided on a case-by-case basis by the Sessions Committee Clerk and the session’s Displays Coordinator.

All displays at YM sessions may include passive appeals such as envelopes that contain invitations to send or pledge money. Seeking cash donations at display spaces is actively discouraged, especially if the display space is not under constant supervision by a human presence. When supervised, display spaces may include active fundraising. Be sure to include in your displays request any need for internet access in order to facilitate your active fundraising. Note that “fundraising” is not to be confused with actively selling items. See below for selling items.

The Development Committee and Sessions Committee will work together to balance the need of Development Committee to do fundraising, the need for yearly meeting sessions to remain spiritually grounded, and the need to implement the Leadings and Priorities.

There is a Display Space Request Form online, but each YM session may have its own, different process for requesting space. Please find this information in the announcements for each YM session.

Financial Assistance is Available

Monday July 3 is the deadline for financial assistance requests for Summer Sessions. Friends requesting assistance should first ask your monthly meeting, quarterly, and regional meetings for support. No request for funds will be processed, and no funds will be disbursed, without this communication from your meeting. Friends will be asked to send confirmation from their meeting about the amount that has been asked for and granted—even if it is zero. This process can be as simple as an email or note from your meeting’s clerk, or a more formal letter. Please see the NYYM website for additional information on financial assistance and our Equalization Fund.

Fill out the Financial Assistance section at the bottom of your registration form stating the amount you expect or hope to receive from your meeting. Then write in the amount you need from the Equalization Fund. Scholarships typically provide adults and children up to one-third the cost of lower-priced housing, but may provide more, depending on the needs of the individual or family. If you have a physical condition that limits your mobility and your access to the lower-priced housing units, please give us that information on your form.

Contributions to the Equalization Fund help Friends with the cost of attending NYYM sessions. The registration form in Spark and on the NYYM website provides an opportunity for Friends to contribute to the fund.

Pay as Led Announcement
from the 2017 NYYM Spring Sessions minutes.

2017-04-35. Melanie-Claire Mallison (Ithaca), clerk of Sessions Committee, announced that at Summer Sessions 2017, Sessions Committee will bring recommendations for a Pay as Led process for the Meeting to consider and possibly approve for the 2018 Summer Sessions at Silver Bay.
Pay as Led (PaL) is a Quakerly way to consider our financial condition when registering to attend our Summer Sessions and paying for our accommodations, working within the given guidelines of the detailed PaL process. So, through this process, we ask everyone to prayerfully consider—how am I led to participate in my NYYM sessions?

There are two motivations for all of us to consider moving forward with a Pay as Led process; first, to make it more affordable for Friends who have had to stretch mightily in the past in order to be able to attend Summer Sessions, and second to better welcome Friends who may have stayed away from Summer Sessions because of cost. We hope that PaL will open up the Yearly Meeting experience to more Friends.

Sessions Committee has conferred with members of the Financial Services Committee and has begun a conversation with the NYYM Trustees to make sure that we are moving forward in good faith in such a process, while still acting with prudence in accepting the risks, including the financial risks.

We base some of this faith in our knowledge of the New York Yearly Meeting Friends and some in the experience of New England Yearly Meeting successfully using a PaL process for their past three Summer Sessions.

Still. A Pay as Led process will require a leap of faith from all of us. We will have to take an active part in detailed planning and discussion and discernment, while acknowledging issues of race, class, wage inequalities, and accepting some level of inevitable struggle around trust, fairness and integrity.

But we are saying that the leap is what brings us closer to the Beloved Community, and the completeness of our Religious Society of Friends.

Sessions Committee encourages each of you to keep a close eye on the NYYM website and publications for committee reports, charts, and recommendations regarding the creation of the PaL process for New York Yearly Meeting. Most especially, we encourage your active engagement with the committee prior to and during 2017 Summer Sessions. The Ad Hoc PaL committee is Linda Houser (Purchase), Cheshire Frager (Flushing), Melanie-Claire Mallison (Ithaca), Dawn Pozzi (Rochester), Christopher Sammond (Poplar Ridge), and Doug Way (New Brunswick). Serving as resources to the PaL Committee are Sunfire Kazmayer (Easton), Roseann Press (Housatonic) and Mary Williams (Bulls-Head Oswego). We are in the Yearbook!


NYYM Summer Sessions Registration Fees



Driving Times; Silver Bay Association is approximately two hours north of Albany; 4-5 hours north of New York City; 6-7 hours north east of Buffalo. For more explicit or alternate directions, contact Silver Bay Association.


Driving Directions

Silver Bay is on the west side of Lake George about 90 miles north of Albany. Leave I-87 at exits 22, 23, or 24.

At exit 22: Take a left onto Rt. 9. Go through Lake George Village to the north end and take a right onto Rt. 9N. Go through Bolton Landing, then go approximately 13 miles. At Silver Bay Road, on the right, go 1/2 mile to the Inn.

At exit 23: Take a right off the exit onto Bolton Road all the way to the end of the road. Turn left onto Rt. 9N, through Bolton Landing, and 13 miles towards Hague. At Silver Bay Road, on the right, go 1/2 mile to the Inn.

At exit 24: Take a right off the exit. Go 4 miles east to Rt. 9N, then left (north) on 9N for 13 miles. At Silver Bay Road, on the right, go 1/2 mile to the Inn.


Public Transportation

By train: Take Amtrak's Adirondack to Ticonderoga (800-523-8720 or 800-879-7245).

Bus service: Adirondack Trailways (800-225-0815) from New York or Albany to Lake George Village. See below for transportation from Lake George Village to Silver Bay.

Note: Friends using public transportation who are interested in traveling together from Ticonderoga on Sunday, July 24, should contact Helen Garay Toppins at


Shuttle Information

Please note: Silver Bay does not provide shuttle service to and from Silver Bay. Below is a list of vendors who can provide this service.
From: Nearby Locations (cost per car)

  • Adirondack Cab Co. (Ticonderoga) 518-585-2222
  • Ticonderoga Train Station $ 30.00
  • Lake George Village $ 50.00
  • Ticonderoga $ 30.00
  • Glens Falls $ 60.00
  • Plattsburgh $ 75.00
  • Burlington, Vermont 100.00

From: Albany Airport or Albany Bus Terminal

  • Number of passengers 1 to 3, up to 6
  • Adirondack Cab Co. 518-585-2222 $ 150.00
  • Today’s Limousine 518-452-4242 $ 170.00+tax $ 185+tax
    • Ask for Silver Bay rates. If you are traveling with others the rate can be divided by the number of passengers.


Junior Yearly Meeting

Welcome young Friends and parents/guardians to Junior Yearly Meeting (JYM) 2017!

Here are some basic things for everyone to remember:

When you arrive at Silver Bay YMCA, you must check in with Silver Bay to get room assignments, and then proceed to the JYM registration area in Gullen Lounge in the Inn. JYM registration will be open from 4:00 to 6:00pm and 8:00-9:00 on Sunday evening. Those registering Monday morning or later should go to the JYM office in Gullen Lounge. Please bring your child’s relevant medical history, parental consent forms, and a record of any allergies. If you are sponsoring a JYM youth, you will need a medical form signed BY THE YOUTH’S PARENT in order to register. (See the list below of JYM forms found online.)

Where does my child go? Each JYM group is based on the grade the young Friend will be entering in the fall, from 1st to 12th. Each group meets in the same space every day. These spaces will be posted at JYM Registration.

For children from infancy through those entering kindergarten, Silver Bay offers childcare Monday through Friday mornings from 8:30 to 11:45am, which is supplemented by a JYM volunteer. See the Silver Bay Camp Booklet for more information on the SB program. We usually ask parents to sign up to help cover the time between 11:45 and 12:15 so parents can take turns attending Meeting for Business. This will be coordinated by the JYM volunteer. The Yearly Meeting will cover the fee to Silver Bay for this service, but in order for NYYM to do so, parents MUST submit the Silver Bay Enrollment Form watermarked with NYYM (see link below) in order for Silver Bay to bill NYYM. If you do not use this form, you will be expected to pay Silver Bay directly for childcare. Donations to offset this cost are appreciated from any Friend, parent or not, who wishes to contribute. You must also complete a JYM medical form for JYM registration. This will enable your child to participate in PM childcare and other JYM sponsored events.

When does JYM meet? Every morning, the entire Yearly Meeting community will meet in the auditorium for Community Worship from 8:45 to 9:15am. The young Friends will then leave the auditorium with their JYM group and be in their program until 12:15pm. Please make sure that your child gets enough rest every night to be able to participate effectively in his/her JYM group each morning. If your child will not be attending group on a given day, please notify the group leaders or the JYM Coordinators. Children in grades 1-4 cannot be dismissed from JYM until a designated adult picks them up. Parents and guardians please let the group leaders know in advance if you wish them to release your child to someone other than yourself.

Morning worship sharing for teens. Young Friends entering 10th to 12th grade are expected at their group after morning community worship. The Senior High group will start with worship sharing at the Boathouse. Young Friends who wish to be part of an adult worship group may do so and will come to the Boathouse at rise of that worship group.

Afternoon and evening (PM) childcare. JYM provides cooperative childcare for children up through the age of 10, with JYM volunteers and JYM parents, every day during committee meeting times and most evening session times. These times will be posted at JYM Registration and in the weekly Program. Evening childcare ends at 9pm. Please note: If childcare is required after 9pm or outside of PM childcare hours, please contact Silver Bay to arrange for childcare services at an hourly rate that will be charged to the parents/guardians. All the PM Childcare sessions rely on volunteer help and all parents who bring children to PM Childcare are expected to give an hour to the program. There must be one adult for every four children. Two volunteers from JYM will supervise each session. You can sign up to help during JYM registration, at the JYM table in Gullen Lounge, or at any time with the JYM PM Childcare volunteers in Morse Hall. We thank you in advance for helping to provide care for all of the children in our community.

How do I know where my child is during the day? During official JYM sessions, they should be with their JYM groups. If your child’s group will leave their regular space on a given day for a special event, you will be informed, and/or a notice will be posted on the door of the regular meeting place. Any person under 18 not attending an age-appropriate JYM group must be accompanied by a parent, guardian, or parentally designated adult companion during JYM session times. Parents/guardians/sponsors are responsible for JYMers whenever they are not with their JYM group or JYM childcare. We suggest that you have a regular check-in time and location for the young Friend(s) and the parent/guardian/sponsor to connect with each other each day.

Which group will my child be assigned to? The JYM groups are organized by standard public school grades in an effort to build on the strengths and needs of our children. Experience has shown us that placing children in groups with attenders years older or younger than they are does not work well for community building. Although it is tempting to ask that siblings who are assigned to different groups be placed together, we have found that this is usually a hindrance to both the children and the JYM group.

Can the JYM volunteers provide for my child with special needs? We welcome and are enriched by the participation of all children in our community. If your child will attend JYM and needs a very high level of individual attention because of a physical or developmental need, please plan to participate with them in the program. The JYM program does not have enough volunteer staff with special training to provide for all special needs. Please contact the JYM Coordinators if you have questions about your child’s participation.

Can my child go to Silver Bay without me? If your child is under 18, he/she may attend Silver Bay with an adult sponsor. The sponsor should be designated by the parent or legal guardian and must be at least 10 years older than the young Friend they are sponsoring. The sponsor and the child should know each other reasonably well. When you register your child to attend Yearly Meeting you will need to indicate who their sponsor is, send your child’s registration in with that person’s, and indicate that they will be clustering (rooming near each other). You will need to send a SIGNED, completed medical information form with your child, to be turned in at JYM registration.

What is clustering? People in a “cluster” are assigned rooms in the same building, on the same floor, in close proximity to one another. Clustering allows children and their parents, guardians, or sponsors to check in with one another and communicate responsibly. You must request clustering when you register for Summer Sessions at Silver Bay, and if feasible, send in the clustering registration forms together.

What do I need to bring? If you register with enough lead time, JYM volunteers working with your group will send you a letter explaining what you will be doing in your group and listing certain things they think you may want to bring with you. We suggest that everybody bring along a beach towel, bathing suit, sunscreen, sturdy shoes, and rain gear. The weather at Silver Bay is unpredictable and can be quite cool. Be prepared for this by packing some warmer clothing (for example, long pants, sweatshirts, windbreaker).

Snacks. All families are asked to bring a can of juice and healthy non-sugary cracker snacks for our JYM groups to share during snack time. These contributions can be brought to the JYM registration area or JYM office in the Boathouse.

About cell phones and electronic devices. We come to Yearly Meeting to create a Blessed Community. This requires that we be present to each other. With this in mind, the JYM Committee has agreed that cell phones and other electronic devices will not be used during JYM program. JYMers are advised to leave their devices safely in their rooms. If you bring one to group, you will be asked to put it in a basket during group time. JYM adult volunteers have walkie-talkies to use in case of an emergency. Whom do I talk to if I have any questions? The JYM Coordinators, Ellie Rosenberg and Dawn Pozzi, are available to answer questions about JYM during our week at Silver Bay. Except during Community Worship times, one of the Coordinators will be available Monday through Friday, from 9:15 to 12:15, at the JYM table in Gullen Lounge. You can also go to the clerk of JYM Committee, Susan Stillman, or the NYYM conference office in the Inn. If you cannot find us and want to leave a note, there is a message board in the Inn for that purpose.

Resource people for JYM. If you have a special gift and a leading to share that with the young Friends, please contact the JYM Coordinators before June 10 so we can include that information at our Planning weekend.

Adult presences needed! Afternoon and evening childcare programs offered by Junior Yearly Meeting are always happy to have additional Friendly adults. You can sign up to help during JYM registration, the JYM table in Gullen Lounge, or at any time with the JYM PM Childcare volunteers. We thank you in advance for helping to provide care for all of the children in our community.

If you are interested in serving the Yearly Meeting as a JYM volunteer in future years, please speak with Ellie Rosenberg or Dawn Pozzi, JYM Coordinators for 2017.


Parent Meeting on Sunday, July 23, 8 p.m.

JYM will be hosting a discussion for parents of Junior and Senior High students on Sunday night at Silver Bay to discuss what type of behavior we as a parent community would like to encourage and uphold during our week together. Topics will include: Whisper Buddies, Silver Bay's policy regarding alcohol, and our response as parents to community agreements. Parents of Junior High students are asked to meet in Munn; parents of Senior High students are asked to meet in Field Memorial.


JYM Online Forms



Registration for Summer Sessions 2017 at Silver Bay is now open!


How to Register:

There are three ways to complete your registration form(s) for Summer Sessions 2017.

  1. Register online! If you are paying by credit/debit card, or by eCheck, you can submit your registration forms and payment online at:
  2. Download your registration form(s). Click to download your forms: Adult Form or Youth Form. These are now Fillable PDF files that you can fill out electronically and email to or print them and mail them to the NYYM office with a check for your registration fees.
  3. On the back page of Spark (May 2017) you will find registration forms. Cut them out, fill them in, and mail them with a check for your registration fees to New York Yearly Meeting, 15 Rutherford Place, New York, NY 10003.

Please do not forget to submit your Registration Fees with your registration forms!

Click here to view or download a PDF of the room rates.

Please call us with any questions you have at 212-673-5750 or email Helen Garay Toppins at


Advance Documents

Advance Documents will be posted here as they become available. Please check back periodically to stay up to date!