In 1981, friends lamented that there were rare occasions to learn from their fascinating work and everyday-life acquaintances in a personal, substantive way. Consequently, 60 families shared Phil & Linda Lader's four-day New Year's "house party" on Hilton Head Island.
The spirit of an "extended family reunion"
Long-time "regulars" & extraordinary newcomers: New Year's Renaissance's 1,000+ participants and smaller Weekends, at other holiday times, retain the founding spirit.
Renaissance Weekend's 25th Anniversary was co-chaired by past participants Presidents Gerald Ford and Bill Clinton. 2014's Weekends marked the 100th Renaissance Weekend. New Year's 2016-2017 will celebrate the tradition's 35th anniversary.
Scores of Nobel laureates, Pulitzer, MacArthur and Templeton Prize-winners, dozens of Oscar-, Emmy- and Grammy-winners, Supreme Court Justices, Senators, Congressmen and Governors, many astronauts, 16 former candidates for U.S. President (Republicans and Democrats), and Wimbledon and Olympic champions, as well as professional athletes, have regularly been among the distinguished participants.
A cross-generational "continuing conversation"
Everyone who comes has a noteworthy story; many, incredibly inspiring. For some, amazing achievements & contributions are ahead. For most, Renaissance's ideas & relationships play a critical part in professional & personal development. All are committed to making a genuine difference with their lives.
No political or commercial agenda. Yet the Weekends' friendships have fostered historic projects, ventures and public service. (See 1981 Program to note founding participants.)