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September 2015 | Preserve Our Paradise Campaign

 

Preserve Our Paradise Campaign Newsletter

Welcome to the second issue of the Preserve our Paradise Campaign bimonthly Newsletter! In this issue:
Awareness Event Report
On the Mountain this Summer 
The Mountain Preservation Initiative
SMF Partnering with Vermont Community Foundation

Awareness Event Report: New Canaan, CT

During July, the Preserve our Paradise Campaign held two awareness events in New England. Here's an account of one of these events.

On Sunday, July 12, a convivial group of MRG skiers and homeowners gathered in New Canaan, CT, at the beautiful home of Susanna and John Nichols for an awareness event hosted by the Nichols and Pamela & John Nesbett. Most were from Fairfield County, and many were members of the Amateur Ski Club of New York whose beloved lodge sits adjacent to MRG’s employee parking lot and boasts one of the best views of the mountain.
 
Awareness EventThe festive mood was set upon arrival where guests were greeted by red and white balloons and a MRG sticker. After a few cocktails and some catching up of old friends, the group soon nestled into the living room to view the campaign video and hear about the exciting initiatives planned to insure that MRG is there for generations to come. A lively discussion ensued and many questions were asked regarding such serious topics as building plans, green initiatives, management of the collected funds, and – on a lighter note – if MRG should consider a new waffle hut. “I was so proud of the turn out from the club and the thoughtfulness of the questions asked,” said Pam Nesbett. “I think the overall feelinwas very positive and many pulled me aside afterwards stating their commitment to help. MRG is sacred ground. Period.”

On the Mountain this Summer

By Jamey Wimble, President/GM
 
The snow may be far from many skiers’ thoughts this time of year, but at Mad River there’s still plenty happening during the warm months. Public response has been very favorable to the operation of the BaseBox on summer weekends. Friday nights are the big hit, but Saturday and Sunday are building. In other BaseBox news, the pub will be getting a new point of sale system this fall which will be in place for the winter season and will enhance our efficiency.

On the mountain, a small cutting crew funded by an SMF grant has been hard at work clearing woods of debris and renewing old woods shots such as the Marten, which runs from Lower Antelope to Bunny. Nate, Chuck, and Stevie have been busy with trail work and normal lift maintenance, as well as installing new bullwheel bearings on the Birdland lift. The Telemark rental fleet is getting upgraded, as well as adding some rack storage. Work will begin in September on construction of the new patrol and warming shelter at the top of the Sunnyside Double, a project funded by early donations to the Paradise Campaign. In keeping with Mad River’s frugal nature, all of this work will be done in house. Enjoy the remaining warm weather, and soon it will be time to think snow!

Summer at MRG

The Mountain Preservation Initiative

Enhancing the Traditional Ski Experience


In planning the Preserve our Paradise Campaign, the Mad River Board of Trustees and management surveyed the community and conducted numerous interviews. After extensive research and consultation, they identified four key areas of need to be addressed by the campaign through skier support and strategic partnerships: Mountain Preservation; Skier Safety & Services; Youth & Family Development; and Community Preservation. In future issues of this newsletter we’ll cover each of these four areas. Perhaps no initiative is more important than Mountain Preservation, so we’ll focus on that specific initiative first in this issue.

There are six specific areas that the campaign seeks to fund as part of this initiative:
  • Perform essential lift upgrades and maintenance to ensure effective and safe operation
  • Upgrade Mad River’s snowmaking system, which is nearing the end of its life expectancy
  • Replace grooming machines that are nearing the end of their service life
  • Install a new drive station for the Birdland Lift
  • Mountain workPerform vital mountain work, such as repair of bridges and culverts, maintaining glades, and improving snow management through cost-effective enhancements such as reseeding trails and snow reservoirs
  • Establish an endowment though Stark Mountain Foundation and Vermont Community Foundation (VCF) to fund mountain preservation initiatives and help provide financial stability (see article below for more information about VCF).
Although a specific fundraising goal has not yet been set during this “quiet phase” of the campaign, Mountain Preservation will likely be the largest of the four campaign priorities. The working “Minimum Needs” for the campaign would fully fund all of the above initiatives except the endowment, which would be partially funded. If the campaign’s “Optimum Needs” are met, the endowment would then be fully funded. We’ll announce specific campaign goals and detailed projected costs for each initiative at the time that the campaign goes public, likely sometime this coming winter. In the meantime, we welcome your comments and thoughts about the campaign at paradisecampaign@madriverglen.com.  

MRG woods

SMF Partnering with Vermont Community Foundation

Stark Mountain Foundation logoThe Stark Mountain Foundation (SMF) is Mad River Glen's 501(c)(3) nonprofit partner for the Paradise Campaign. As mentioned in the preceding article, one of the key campaign goals of the Mountain Preservation initiative will be to create an SMF endowment to support Mad River Glen in its efforts to maintain a traditional, natural skiing experience on General Stark Mountain. An endowment would be invested carefully, and the income would then help support the Cooperative’s preservation efforts. Although the concept of an endowment is new to Mad River Glen, for generations the concept has been very well-accepted for institutions such as colleges and other nonprofits. Obviously, it is important to demonstrate to all potential donors that an endowment would be wisely invested and professionally managed.

After careful consideration of a number of potential partners, SMF has chosen the highly-reputable Vermont Community Foundation (VCF) to manage the Cooperative’s endowment. VCF was founded in 1986 as a permanent source of support for the state’s nonprofits, and currently manages over $190 million in assets, representing 660 funds benefiting a wide variety of Vermont organizations. VCF has the highest ethical and professional standards and will provide a safe and well-managed haven for Mad River’s future endowment funds.
 
VCF Logo 

Upcoming Events


September 12
Co-op Board of Trustees Meeting, 8 am
September 25-26
SIPtemberfest - Beer festival with two dozen brewers
September 26-27
Fall Foliage Weekend – Chairlift rides from 10 am - 2:30 pm
October 3-4
Green & Gold Weekend – Foliage rides, homeowners meeting, shareholder town meeting, chicken BBQ
October 3
Stark Mountain Hill Climb – Running race to benefit SMF
October 15
Early season pass rate and free kids pass deadline
November 14
Co-op Board of Trustees Meeting, 8 am


More info at Mad River Glen's Event Calendar
Campaign Cabinet

Chair: Annika Holtan    Members at Large: Lars Bruns, Bob Dillon, Jim Elkind, Meg Hourihan, Betsy Jondro, Karen Lloyd, John Nesbett, Pamela Nesbett, Eric Palola, Penny Parson, Greg Scott, Debra Steines, John Stetson, John Tobin, Brooks Ware, Jamey Wimble
Look for our next newsletter in November!

Copyright © 2015 Mad River Glen Cooperative, All rights reserved.


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