by Claire Kupferle #3
While the 1980’s came to be known as the “Me Decade,” the Kindervelt community bucked that trend with a strong spirit of philanthropy. Membership and participation grew, and Kindervelt’s profile in the community rose. Leadership and skills training helped develop a strong organization capable of taking on complex tasks.
A test of that strength came in 1983, when Kindervelt was approached to co-host the 1987 World (yes World!) Figure Skating Championships, should Cincinnati be selected as the host city. It was, and Kindervelt joined with the Queen City Figure Skating Club and The Skating Club of Cincinnati to stage the successful event. Kindervelt was rewarded with international acclaim and earned almost $200,000 for its participation. Please see the article by Nancy VanBuskirk for personal recollections of this monumental undertaking from Sharry Addison, past KV president and Chair of the event.
The 1980s also saw the inauguration of the annual Tennithon, a tennis marathon in which children from twelve Indoor Tennis Association Clubs played tennis in a marathon overnight session to earn pledges. Kindervelt was also involved in the Mason-Dixon Steeplechase event in 1987 and 1988. Kindervelt, along with Booth Memorial Hospital, were co-beneficiaries of the event, and allied KV with a Kentucky hospital.
While the city-wide events drew publicity, the local chapters were busy sponsoring imaginative events and “having fun while raising funds.” The autonomy granted to the individual chapters led to an explosion in creative ways to generate funds. Events included selling shamrocks at the St. Patrick’s Day Parade, golf outings, plant sales, bunco parties, casino nights, and much more.
The money raised through the 1980s helped fund a new Division of Infectious Diseases and provided endowments for establishing a new Cardiovascular Institute and a professorship of Pulmonary Medicine.
Look for a piece about Kindervelt in the 1990s in next month’s newsletter!