by Carl Sniffen
May at Shadowcliff is truly a special time. It is a time of many things—an awakening, a renewal and a reunion. It is a time when on any given day it can be winter, spring or summer. Each May, a wonderfully special group of people return to reawaken Shadowcliff from its winter slumber, renew and refresh its facilities and grounds, and renew a tradition that began in Shadowcliff’s earliest history.
As many know, Shadowcliff does not exist without its volunteers. Beginning in 1959, more than 600 volunteers from 42 different countries built Shadowcliff. People who gave up their summers to camp along the North Inlet Stream and join other volunteers to create the magical place will call Shadowcliff.
Volunteerism has been and will always be a part of Shadowcliff. Since those humble beginnings, volunteers have returned each May to assess the toll of a Rocky Mountain winter on Shadowcliff facilities, rebuild and restore facilities, clean and refresh rooms, facilities and grounds, and prepare Shadowcliff for the busy season ahead.
This month is also a time for reunion—with so many volunteers returning from year to year, volunteers who now include the children and grandchildren of some of the earliest volunteers. Each year, the volunteer group welcomes new members and hopefully new traditions and memories.
Through the hard work and service by our volunteers,
all is made easier by the companionship of other volunteers, and the opportunity to do important work greatly appreciated by all who keep Shadowcliff in their hearts throughout the years. May is a time when laughter cascades down the hallways of the lodges and throughout the campus. And, any time at Shadowcliff is a time for personal renewal often aided by a few quiet moments spent at the Point or on the Rempel deck gazing at the mirror like surface of Grand Lake and snow-capped peaks.
May is truly a special time at Shadowcliff, and we hope that you might find time this year or next to join us. You can always learn more about volunteer opportunities by contacting board member Carl Sniffen at firstname.lastname@example.org or our executive director Hillary Mizia at email@example.com.
Long ago, Shadowcliff founders Warren and Patt Rempel began another tradition involving volunteers. All May volunteers are invited back to Shadowcliff later in the season to enjoy a weekend of friendship, relaxation and fun, Shadowcliff’s way of saying “thank you” to such a special group of people. It’s a time to hike, play and enjoy the natural surroundings and beauty of Shadowcliff. This year’s volunteer weekend is tentatively scheduled for August 19-21.
We hope to see you in May, and we look forward to serving you in August.