December 09, 2007

A very big THANK YOU!!

Introducing the local route development Crew during the slide show last night. Right to left. Jerry Painter, Mike Benson, Matt TeNgiao, Kevin Coble, Rick Williams, and Nat Meacham. These guys either contributed financially to the development and/or rebolting efforts, new route establishment, or have put in the time and effort to equip new routes here in Eastern Idaho.

There was a large turn out for the event. College kids and locals alike. Some even traveled from Salt Lake City to attend. I didn't get a head count, but approximately 100 people packed into the small space and made it work.

Money well spent! Chad Alldredge killed it in the raffle.

What a great night! I was very nervous to say the least. It's always difficult to put on a good presentation when it's something new. Unlike giving the same slide show over and over again where you have a pretty good idea what to say and where things are going. A new show becomes more of a fly by the seat of your pants kind of deal! It's just talking about climbing, so you'd think it would be easy, right?? Sometimes i suppose, but it's not always the case. I think for the most part i was able to convey the thoughts and stories i wanted to share. I did forget a few things here and there but it worked out... i think!

Rick gave a great introduction and was a tough act to follow after the kinds words he spoke. Thanks Rick! I took a few minutes to talk about how important the climbing community is to me and decided to invite some of the key players up front for some much deserved recognition. Kevin Coble and Eric Larson from the Idaho Alpine Club donated some funds this spring for the replacement of anchors at Heise Rock. Rick Williams has given of his time and resources for much of the cleaning and fixed draws at the local Crank Cave. And along with Nat Meacham, they have even jumped on board with some of the back breaking equipping efforts on a few of the routes at the Cave. Mike Benson and Matt TeNgiao have been the main duo in bringing new routes to climb around the Idaho Falls area. While Matt and Jerry have taken it upon themselves to keep us all informed with their guidebook, Sweet Spots of Eastern Idaho.

The slide show went off without any technical difficulties and got a lot of laughs which is always a good thing! Rick put together a fun short clip of mixed climbing at the Right Ghost in Teton Canyon. Having a bit of video brought a new feeling to the presentation and was well liked by everyone. Maybe next year, we'll step it up and have some really cool video. I don't know about most of the people attending, but my favorite part was the ending images to the Cold Play song. Pretty special.

Now for the really great part about the evening. The idea behind the fundraiser was to raise money to build some much needed new terrain at our local climbing gym. I thought we'd raise $600 or $700 which would put a very large dent in the cost for the new terrain. The grand total was just shy of $1200!! Thank you so much to all of those who donated for this cause, sponsors and folks attending the slide show. We are going to have some kick butt bouldering terrain in a month or two. Not to mention some actual padding, so getting rad will be less painful! I'm excited that many of the upper valley climbers will now have a venue to learn, get strong, and hang out with other climbers.

Stay tuned for progress on the new terrain. And again, thanks for a great evening...