Each year, the Rehoboth Beach Homeowners’ Association hosts or participates in several key events, all aimed at fostering the spirit of community. Bi-annual meetings — held each year in April and October — give members an opportunity to hear a noted speaker discuss topics of current concern to homeowners, get an update on RBHA happenings, and air concerns about community issues. In July, we co-host with Camp Rehoboth the annual “Meet the Candidates” forum where residents can question candidates for the position of Mayor or City Commissioner. We host a group for the annual Coastal Clean-Up, organized by The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC). We host a picnic for members in September, and an Employee Appreciation Breakfast for city employees in October. We also host or co-host special one-time events. See below for details on each of these events:
Ed McMahon Lecture
City Employee Breakfast
For more than 15 years, RBHA has hosted an Employee Appreciation Breakfast for City employees. The 2017 Breakfast was held October 11on the second floor of the Fire Hall as the Convention Center is undergoing renovation. Board members who were in town arrived at "o' dark thirty" to decorate the tables with festive fall colors and set up a breakfast buffet for all City employees. The buffet spread included fresh fruit platters, yogurts, bagels, pastries, coffee cakes, donuts, sausage and bacon and egg sandwiches, juices, milk and coffee.
Coming over in shifts, the employees were able to take a much-deserved break and enjoy conversations and laughs with fellow employees while dining at the RBHA-sponsored breakfast. For City employees who could not attend, a “Breakfast on Wheels” was carried to the various City Buildings following the convention center event.
Back by popular demand, each employee received an envelope that either contained a $20 bill or $1 or $2 "scratch ticket" which brought extra smiles and laughter to the breakfast. In addition, eight employees went home with the floral centerpieces and eight others with centerpiece cermaics overflowing with sweets.
The Employee Breakfast is a highlight of the year for RBHA, a time for us to thank city employees for ALL they do for us all year long!
On Saturday, November 5, 2016, Ed McMahon, noted urban planner, addressed a packed house at the Fire Hall. He spoke about a "sense of place": those elements that make one city or town different from another, and also make our physical surroundings worth caring about. People want to spend time in a special place like Rehoboth Beach, not one that looks and feels like every other city. In his talk, McMahon set forth compelling arguments for the economic, psychological, and social value of uniqueness.
Sussex County provides a clear example of the difference uniqueness makes. Driving down Route One, you could be in any city in America. But once you cross the canal into our city, you know you are in a place unlike any other, with a special character we all love.
Mr. McMahon, who holds the Charles E. Fraser Chair on Sustainable Development at the Urban Land Institute, has become well known across the country for his TED Talk and many writings on the important subjects related to building and preserving unique communities.
What a thought-provoking presentation of the special nature of Rehoboth Beach! RBHA was proud to have been one of the organizations sponsoring Mr. McMahon's visit here, and will be participating in the discussions that will follow addressing some of the key issues he talked about, both with community development and with tourism. Click here to see videos of highlights from the presentation.
Fall Membership Meeting
Spring Membership Meeting
Our Annual Spring meeting was held on April 21, 2018 at CAMP Rehoboth. By the time the meeting started, it was standing room only!
The meeting began with a moment of silence for former CAMP Executive Director and longtime RBHA member, Steve Elkins.
Our featured speaker was Mayor Paul Kuhns, who gave us an overview of his first months in office and where he sees the City going. City Manager Sharon Lynn gave an update on various city projects, including Ocean Outfall which included a video of the giant HHD pipes that go into the ocean. She thanked residents who have been impacted by the construction on their streets for their patience, and our members, in turn, thanked Sharon for her oversight of this long and difficult process that is now nearing a successful completion.
Planning Commission Chair David Mellen gave an entertaining presentation on the Comprehensive Development Plan, required by state law, and coming up for revision. Main Street President Ed Chrzanowski displayed and talked about the new banners that will be going up soon in the City's commercial district.
RBHA held its Annual Fall Meeting on Saturday, October 21, 2017. This year's meeting took place at the new City Hall, in the new Commissioners Room. It was the first event to be held in the new space!
Treasurer Steve Curson presented the treasurer's report, which was approved by members in attendance. Charlie Browne recapped the many activities of RBHA, including Coastal Clean-Up and the annual picnic. City Manager Sharon Lynn gave an update on the ocean outfall project, and on upgrades at the sewage treatment plant. Commissioner Stan Mills provided an update on the new technology at City Hall, allowing for better display of support documents at City meetings and higher quality audio recordings.
Following the business meeting, members were taken on a tour of the new City Hall and police department for a closer look "behind the scenes" of our city government.
Great news! Our beach was found to be quite clean! Some volunteers speculated that this is because the City does a great job raking our beach and visitors have become more environmentally aware of the importance of removing trash. This year's Coastal Clean-Up, sponsored by Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) as part of the annual International event, was held Saturday, September 16, 2017 from 9 AM - noon. Volunteers met at the gazebo on Wilmington Avenue and the Boardwalk, where the RBHA staff volunteers had folks sign in, handed out special RBHA T-shirts created just for the occasion, and provided everyone with trash bags, gloves and collection forms.
Our team covered the entire Rehoboth Beach area, from one of the boardwalk to the other. Because almost all volunteers this year were seasoned returnees, we sent them into the protected dunes as well as on the beach. While the beach yielded very little trash, the dunes and section of sand between boardwalk and dunes were a different story. In all, over 2400 cigarette butts were found, 1002 food wrappers, and 845 pieces of foam were found, mostly in that area. There were only two other triple-digit categories of items found: 169 straws/stirrers and 169 bottle caps. Nothing dangerous or unusual was found.
Coastal cleanup is a great way to "give back" for all of us.
Our 5th Annual Picnic was held on Sunday, September 24, 2017 at Grove Park. Like last year, we gathered with friends and neighbors on a sunny Sunday afternoon. Thus year's event might have been the best attended yet! We nearly ran out of sets for everyone.
RBHA provided all of the food and beverages this year. The feast was served on beautiful tables decorated with pumpkins, gourds, and pineapples (that doubled as door prizes).
We started off with appetizers of cheese and crackers, and then moved on to Tomato Pies and eight different type of delicious sandwiches from Frank and Louie's. Desserts, also from Frank and Louie's, completed the feast. The picnic committee did a superb job, and we had great fun coming together and sharing our stories and food with some of the best neighbors ever.