DUNNING - - In April 2009, a group of like-minded individuals in the Dunning/ Halsey area began talking about what they could do to promote their region. The group decided to organize in their effort, and formed the Blaine County Area Community Foundation.
“It all started with a group of optimistic people to get the ball rolling,” says Christi Hafer of the Foundation.
Next month the BCACF will host an Outdoor Adventure Day, geared to generate funds for the Foundation as well as interest in the area.
“Introducing someone to an area only takes one positive experience.” Christi says that is the philosophy behind the Foundation.
Creating a positive experience of this area of the Sandhills is the ultimate goal of the adventure day. Activities will include a horse trail ride, where riders will get to ride a scenic trail between the Loup and Dismal Rivers and observe a variety of wildlife. The ride will be approximately four hours long, with water tanks along the way.
There will be plenty of parking for horse trailers and corrals for the horses available for anyone who would like to come in the night before.
The day will also include a 20-mile bike ride. This competitive, non-timed event will take place on a paved course along the Sandhills Journey Scenic Byway which parallels the river. There will be divisions for age and gender, and a water station at the half-way point of the ride.
The Sandhills Journey Scenic Byway will also provide the backdrop for the 5K walk/run, also a competitive non-timed event on a paved course.
Rounding out the list of adventure day activities will be a trap shoot, both competitive and non competitive for youth and adults, and shooting at the archery range. Shooters will hike the range and enjoy 3-D targets and competitive games, with divisions for compound and traditional archers, both adults and children.
Registration for the Outdoor Adventure Day will be Friday, June 17, from 7-9 p.m., and Saturday, June 18 beginning at 7 a.m. at the Community Hall. Cost is $25 per event, which includes a T-shirt and BBQ awards. Those wishing to have lunch but not participate in the activities may do so for a $10 fee.
Event start times are as follows:
Ranges - 8 a.m.
Trail Ride - 8 a.m.
Bike Ride - 9 a.m.
Walk/Run - 10 a.m.
Lunch - 12 - 2 p.m.
Awards - 1 p.m.
In the two years since its founding, the BCACF has given $2,700 back to the community. Grants awarded include the Dunning Fire Department, youth baseball and FBLA, Sandhills Heritage Museum, Village of Dunning and Youth Rodeo.
Christi says the group was founded to create a “community savings account” or endowment with the following goals in mind: preserve current services and amenities, economic development and recruitment of people to the community. All of these goals are important to save the current businesses, post offices and schools.
The foundation’s endowment is currently at $30,000 and they can grant 4.5 percent annually. Christi says every little bit helps - no donation is too small to make a real difference.
Christi and her husband, Chuck, have fallen in love with the Blaine County area, and she says she knows if other people spend some time there they will too.
She says for those looking for a change, worried about their children’s education, or tired of violence and crime, this is the place for you.
“If you can do your job from anywhere, if you want to start a new business, or if you are about to retire and are looking for some peace, we want to talk to you. We believe we live in the best place in the world, and we ask you to give us a chance to prove it.”
For more information on the Outdoor Adventure Day, or to request a registration form, contact Sue Clark in Brewster at 308-547-2275 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org .