Seabeck Christian Conference Center
The Conference Center in Seabeck, nestled in an out-of-the-way corner of Kitsap County, boasts tremendous views of the Olympic Mountain Range across a private lagoon and the Hood Canal. Mornings are often breathtaking and always serene.
The Conference Center property and the town of Seabeck were originally purchased in 1914 by Laurence Coleman and his brother George. Arn Allen managed the conference for the YMCA for the next 29 years. In 1936 Laurence's son Kenneth Coleman formed a non-profit, private corporation, to which he deeded the conference center and 90 acres. For the next 45 years Kenneth Coleman watched over, guided and financially supported the center. The Seabeck Conference Center is the oldest continually running conference center in the Pacific Northwest.
Today the conference center is a resource available to non-profit organizations and charitable institutions exclusively. The conference centers mission statement is published on their website and reads:
"Seabeck Christian Conference Center is a non-profit, non-secretarian retreat center which seeks to further the moral, social, and spiritual well-being of the individuals, families, and organizations which come within its influence. The center functions to provide a setting and atmosphere that is conducive to the education, renewal, inspiration, and character enhancement of its guests and staff".
The history of Seabeck and the history of the conference center are intertwined. In the early 1900's two Seattle area businessmen formed an alliance to promote the YMCA and the YWCA. The conference center in Seabeck was their offering to these organizations and was meant to be used for summer conferences. The center has been in operation in this quiet town ever since.
The lagoon that now supports a swimming platform and rowboats, was once the mill pond for the lumber mill that operated as one of two mills supporting the town. The lumber mills and the lumber industry vanished in a fire on August 12, 1886. The lumber mills were never rebuilt and the town of Seabeck subsided into the quiet community it remains today.
The Seabeck Christian Conference Center is a wonderful retreat for all who visit. The natural beauty draws visitors outdoors. The wide porches facing west, encourage one to sit, think and marvel at an incredible Pacific Northwest treasure, tucked away on the shores of the Hood Canal. It takes very little imagination to picture how this area of Washington State looked less than two centuries ago. The evidence of the busy lumber time is still there if you look for it. And Mother Nature painted this part of Kitsap County from a glorious palette.
Come for a walk with me through Kitsap County. I'll show you Washington as I see it.