It has always been the hope of the Forest Lake leadership that one outcome of time spent at camp would be the cultivation of a lifelong interest. That is one of the camp’s major reasons behind offering a wide range of elective activities. In the case of Ken Raynor, that held true as he did develop an avid interest in wilderness activities and fishing in particular.
Ken began his association with Forest Lake in 1960 as a junior camper and attended each season through the summer 1970. In his final summer, he was part of the wilderness trip program and spent much of his time on hiking, canoeing, and fishing trips all through the Adirondacks. Ken’s interests and the program at Forest Lake were a good fit. He enjoyed the athletic activities in which he excelled but he also branched out into individual pursuits such as the trip program and golf.
Ken grew up in South Salem, New York which is located in Westchester County. He thrived in that environment because in the 1950’s and 1960’s much of Westchester County had a significant amount of woodland and rural areas where Ken could enjoy his outdoor activities throughout the schoolyear bolstered by his summer experiences at Forest Lake.
When it was time to look at colleges, Ken identified Maine as a likely location due to the variety of outdoor opportunities available. He decided upon Nasson College and chose to remain in Maine during the summer months where he worked at the Cape Arundel Golf Club in Kennebunkport on their course maintenance staff. Ken decided to pursue golf as a career and was hired as an assistant golf professional following his graduation from Nasson. Then, in 1979, Ken was asked to become the head professional at Cape Arundel. This, of course, was a dream come true because the location in Kennebunkport provided Ken with the perfect location for following his two key interests – golf and fishing.
Being “at the right place at the right time” is an adage that works in Ken’s case. As it turned out, the Cape Arundel Golf Club was the preferred golf course for the Bush family who have resided in Kennebunkport during the summers for a long time. As a result, Ken developed a strong friendship with the Bush family that has lasted to the present. As George H.W. Bush’s golf partner, Ken has enjoyed the opportunity to play golf with present and past presidents, sports heroes, media personalities, and political figures. Among Ken’s professional honors and accomplishments are New England Professional of the Year (2003), Maine Golf Hall of Fame (2005), Champion State of Maine Senior PGA, and Winner of International 4-Ball Scotland.
Interestingly, Ken’s association with President Bush was not limited to the golf course as they were also “fishing buddies” and have traveled together on fishing excursions to Labrador, Newfoundland, the Arctic, and parts of the western US.
At the urging of friends and family, Ken has recorded his forty plus years of friendship with President Bush in a recently published book, I Call Him Mr. President the proceeds from which are being donated to charity.
Ken and his wife, Anne, currently divide their year between Kennebunkport, ME and Placida, FL as he maintains his position as head pro at both the Cape Arundel Golf Club and the Coral Creek Golf Club. Ken and Anne’s son, Kyle, also an FLC alum, lives in Boston and is employed by the Red Sox as an Account Executive of Premier Sales. Ken remains in touch with a number of FLC alumni – among them Pete Galletly and Larry Giusti.