News July 2002

Renovation of Balcom Pipe Organ Nears Completion

The two manual, eight rank electropneumatic organ which was once Sandy Balcom's home organ was sold to the Foundation by University Temple United Methodist Church in 2001. The organ had for many years been in the Sander Chapel of that church, but when another organ was obtained, this one was surplus.

For an organ of its size, it has a broad range of tonal color with three ranks of reeds being included. The organ was removed from the Sander Chapel by Foundation volunteers last year and beginning last fall it has undergone renovation, particularly rewiring.

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Console for the Balcom Organ

An additional rank is being added (Octave) to assist with congregational singing. The rebuilding is now nearing completion, and exploration of two potential placements is currently being made.

Wicks Organ Donated to Foundation

Marian Parrish of Ft. Bragg, California, has donated her two manual, nine rank Wicks organ to the Foundation. The organ was originally installed in Melrose Baptist Church in Oakland California. In the early 1960s, it was bought by the Parrish family and until recently it has been in their home. Mrs. Parrish played the organ over a period of many years.

he organ is no longer needed. Volunteers for the Foundation will travel to California early in April and will pick up the organ. The organ needs complete rewiring, some pipe work, and a rebuilding of the electromechanical system. This work will be done by Foundation volunteers.

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The Wicks organ from Fort Bragg

Potential placements for this organ are currently being explored.


Foundation Obtains Tax Exempt Status from IRS

On January 20, 2002, the IRS awarded the Pipe Organ Foundation 501(c)(3) status as a public charity. The IRS ruling not only provided the Foundation with recognition on a national level, but the ruling resulted in contributions to the Foundation being tax deductible. The process for obtaining this status required approximately nine months and $5,000 in legal fees and application fees.

The initial gift of $10,000 to start the Foundation has covered the IRS process and it has covered the cost of establishing the Foundation as a nonprofit corporation in the State of Washington. It has also funded the initiation and support of all other basic functions of the Foundation including telephone, fax, web site, domain name, and providing basic supplies. In addition, it has made possible the purchase of the first pipe organ and it has underwritten most (but not all) of the costs of renovating that organ. However, in order to proceed ahead with the various Foundation activities, additional gifts are needed.

Getting Involved

You are invited to be involved in the Pipe Organ Foundation. Volunteers are needed to do bench work in the Foundation facilities on Mercer Island. The work is repetitive but not strenuous and it is in a pleasant environment. Contact Carl to inquire. Financial contributions are especially welcome at this time as they would make possible the projects outlined above plus others in the planning stage. Contact us with any questions you may have.

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