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128 Extra Glass Floats at Central Oregon Coast's Lincoln City - With a Philanthropic Slant

Published 6/05/24 at 6:35 a.m.
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection

128 Extra Glass Floats at Central Oregon Coast's Lincoln City - With a Philanthropic Slant

(Lincoln City, Oregon) – Starting this week (it's already begun, actually), some extra 128 glass floats will be dropped on Lincoln City's beaches in a special partnership with the Marie Lamfrom Charitable Foundation (MLCF). There's a philanthropic aspect to this beach hunt: not only do you get to keep the glass float you found but each that is picked up means the MLCF will donate money to a specific cause.

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By finding one on these pristine beaches, you also help out other human beings.

Explore Lincoln City's Finders Keepers is one of the most popular features on the entire Oregon coast, drawing in sometimes hundreds to even thousands during some heavy-drop weeks. Now, they've added a philanthropic twist. From now through June 14 (the first two weeks of this month), each of these extra 128 floats are assigned to a different Oregon coast nonprofit. When one of these floats is found, a donation will be made to the assigned organization.

Each one of the handcrafted floats is uniquely marked with “Marie Lamfrom Specialty Float,” as well as what nonprofit it is assigned to.

“These 128 glass floats are in addition to the 3,000+ glass treasures that are hidden along Lincoln City’s seven miles of sandy beach every year,” said Explore Lincoln City. “When someone finds a float, it’s theirs to keep.”

Lamfrom (Gert Boyle's mother) on the beach in Lincoln City

It's partially in honor of Marie Lamfrom and what would be her 128th birthday.

Lamfrom was a rather special soul in Oregon's history. She originally served as a nurse in World War I, then later escaped Nazi Germany to live in Portland. There, she became a champion for young people, especially the Girl Scouts. She also served as a troop leader at Shriners Hospital for Children. Her daughter was the famed Columbia Sportswear Chairman Gert Boyle who passed away in 2019. The foundation was granted additional funds after Boyle's passing, continuing to support nonprofit organizations focusing on education and mentorship, arts and creativity and health and wellness, with the majority of funds benefiting programs based in Oregon and Washington State.

Organizers say the first ten floats will prompt donations between $5,000-$10,000 for their designated nonprofit.

“Subsequent finds will be generating smaller donations to the participating nonprofits, ultimately totaling $128,000 in grants,” organizers said. “All participating nonprofits will be awarded funding, even if floats are not found by July 31.”

Sally Bany is MLCF co-founder and Marie Lamfrom’s granddaughter. She said her grandmother loved the Oregon coast, especially looking around the beaches for treasures like agates and those coveted glass fishing floats that inspired Finders Keepers.

“So we couldn't think of a better way to celebrate her legacy than by supporting the coastal communities she loved so dearly,” said Bany. “She also loved art, so the tie-in with Lincoln City’s glass artists makes this an especially appealing initiative to commemorate our annual birthday celebration.”

These sought-after balls of glass were made at two different glass studios: Lincoln City Glass Center and Alder House. Then, the town's team of Float Fairies hide those handcrafted lovelies along the seven miles of Lincoln City's sands.

See more about rules of the hunt and the glass floats. As you find one, send a photo to the Visitors Center or bring one by.

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Andre' GW Hagestedt is editor, owner and primary photographer / videographer of Oregon Coast Beach Connection, an online publication that sees over 1 million pageviews per month. He is also author of several books about the coast.

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