By Deb Patterson
SYRACUSE — Even though seven of his family members attended the annual Wawasee Property Owners Association dinner meeting Saturday evening, Aug. 7, Kip Schumm was still surprised when he was named the recipient of the 2021 WPOA Chief Award.
Schumm, who has been serving on the WPOA board of directors for over 20 years, stepped down from the board this year. As with tradition, he was presented with a memento for his service. Those attending from his family included his wife, Pam; daughters Katrina Berg and Kristin Stetz, son-in-law Chris Berg, sisters Tammy Schumm and sister and brother-in-law Toby and Jerry Oswald. Son-in-law Matt Stetz could not attend as he stayed home with the two boys after the babysitters children became sick.
Kay Young, president of the WPOA, recognized Schumm as the outgoing board member, pointing out he has outlasted a lot of those on the board. Schumm served as communications director from the very beginning and was active with newspaper articles “that would probably never gotten there,” helped with getting the directory out when it needed to. Young noted that communication things would not have been nearly as good without Schumm.
“While you’re here, I’d also like to say a few words about you. Not only was he active in things with The Paper, he was very active in the community.” Young noted he moved to Syracuse as a freshman in high school in 1969 and eventually met his wife Pam and they just celebrated their 42nd anniversary. His family includes daughter Katrina and husband Chris and their two sons as well as daughter Kristin and husband Matt and their two sons with a granddaughter expected in December.
Young noted Schumm attended Indiana State University, majoring in graphic designs and in September 2020 he retired from The Papers Incorporated after 38 years where he served as sales associate and sales and marketing manager.
“He decided since he’s retired he’s too busy doing all this grandfathering to stay on the board,” joked Young.
His community involvement included being active with the Syracuse Park Association and currently serving on the park board as an advisor, serving on the Syracuse-Wawasee Historical Museum Board, and being active in Chautauqua-Wawasee. He was the guiding force in many beautification projects in Syracuse such as the decorative street lights and the hanging baskets. He was also instrumental in starting activities as Music in the park and Old Fashioned Christmas.
“Kip, you are our Chief this year,” stated Young. She further explained the Chief Award is presented each year to a person who has “done great things for the lake or our community. Kip is certainly all of that.”
Other business at the meeting included the nomination and election of two new board members. Greg Schenkel and Daryl Elliott will be filling the two spots vacant on the board. Outgoing board members are Schumm and Jim Silcox. Silcox was not present for the evening.
She welcomed everyone to the cruise, which is the annual dinner meeting. “We’re really here with the pretense of a business meeting. But this is one of the best business meetings we’ve ever had. We have very, very few little things of business to do.
“We had a great year, we had a great breakfast, it was good to see everybody after not seeing people for over a year, the fireworks were magnificent, a little exciting, if you were over close to Ogden Island we did have a little incident with a barge, but all will be fixed for next year going off in three directions instead of just two. Thankfully no one on the barge and no one was hurt. We can deal with a few fireworks that were not shot off.”
A dinner of chicken, beef, potatoes, green beans, salad, rolls and three different cheesecakes were served earlier in the evening. The remainder of the evening was spent enjoying the cruise and socializing.