As children, my grandmother and her sister used to walk out to the Esopus Meadows Lighthouse at low-tide, often waiting too long until the tide was too high for them to walk back, forcing my great-grandfather (their father) to take their row boat out to bring them home. When she grew up, my grandmother, grandfather, aunt, and uncle were all present at the Peekskill Riots in 1949. They had strong memories of the stones being thrown through the windows of the cars-the stones that I understand became the chimney at Pete’s cabin in Beacon.
Sometime in the 70’s, my father (Jon Baldwin) started attending Revival and has only ever missed a handful, since he and my stepmom became Peacekeeping volunteers. I started attending Revival in 1986 at just 18 months, as my father began to introduce me and my brother into the Clearwater world. Revival remained close to my heart and at the center of my family’s experience with Clearwater until the summer of 2007, fresh out of my undergraduate education program, I was hired as an education intern aboard the sloop.
I lived and worked aboard the sloop and have carried all of my lessons learned into my classroom, every spring for the last 15 years. I became “The Clearwater Teacher” and my colleagues come to me often in the spring and summer to tell me that they saw “my boat” on the river along their commute or over a weekend.
In 2020, amidst all that was going on in the world, my son Cody was born. This summer, with my dad, stepmom, brother, and sister-in-law in tow, I brought Cody on board for his first sail. As we await a return to normal or see what our new normal will be, I have never lost sight of the mission and history of Clearwater. The sloop and Revival are my happy places, the people who I have met through Clearwater are now family.
The Hudson Valley is in my genes and Clearwater means the world to me. I am so proud to be a part of four generations of Clearwater, representing the past, present, and future.