Happy birthday, Fort Ward bakery! (Our little building turns 106 today.)

The Fort Ward bakery turned 106 this week, and our friends from the Bainbridge Community Foundation paid a visit with a wonderful gift.

Foundation executive director Jim Hopper and finance officer Debbie Kuffel brought us an amazing check for $15,100, our award under the BCF’s 2016 Community Grant program.

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Jim Hopper and Debbie Kuffel of the Bainbridge Community Foundation present a check for $15,100 to the Fort Ward Community Hall campaign.

The award was significantly larger than our actual grant request,  a great honor indeed. In addition to BCF discretionary funding, the grant included contributions from the Pleasant Beach Fund (a donor-advised fund managed by BCF) and two private contributors.

Jim and Debbie toured the building with members of our Fort Ward Youth Advisory Committee, and got a progress update on the community hall project. (It’s going great, more to come on that soon….)

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And yes – it was a birthday!

The US Army Quartermaster’s report in our Fort Ward archives shows the bakery building entered the world on July 22, 1910. Nineteen hundred square feet, brick walls, slate roof, concrete floor, steam heat, and a full complement of ovens that turned out big loaves of bread to keep the garrison fed.

Total construction cost was $8,141.50 – that’s around $200,000 in today’s dollars. We’ll be spending something more than that to fix up the building for its next hundred years as Fort Ward Community Hall, and we deeply appreciate the BCF contribution to that end.

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We celebrated the moment with cupcakes, and as luck would have it, a few extra kids were on hand to share them with us.

Happy 106th birthday, Fort Ward bakery!

And thank you to Jim and Debbie, to the Bainbridge Community Foundation, and to all who support your great organization, and ours.

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The US Army Quartermaster’s report on the Fort Ward bakery, showing its completion date of July 22, 1910. Source: National Archives/Friends of Fort Ward collection.