Thank you to ACES members, partners, volunteers, and community for a great summer!
Click below to enjoy a slide show of photos from the summer.
Here are a few highlights:
A new program, offered in partnership with Pitkin County Open Space and Trails, provided outreach and education at North Star Nature Preserve in addition to our daily Naturalist-guided tours on Aspen, Snowmass, and at the Maroon Bells.
More than 200 adults participated in our Naturalist Field School offerings this summer, from short hikes to in-depth field courses. Over 1,000 kids attended ACES camps at Hallam Lake and Rock Bottom Ranch, including themed week-long classes as well as daily drop-in programs. Our Birding outings, Astronomy Nights, Wild Yoga sessions and Bird of Prey & Beaver programs for all ages attracted more people than ever this year!
Memorable community events included Jessica Catto Dialogues featuring Jason Mark and Michael Curtin, 'An Evening on the Lake' summer benefit, our fourth annual Raptor Fair, and our first ever Stars Above Aspen community astronomy event, to name a few.
Expanded agriculture production at Rock Bottom Ranch included a beef partnership with Cap-K Ranch and the introduction of bee hives to the property. Sustainably grown vegetables, greens, chicken, pork, eggs, cut flowers, and more were sold at the Aspen Saturday Market and at the Ranch.
Our Forest Program kicked off the summer season with a 900-acre prescribed fire (conducted in partnership with the U.S. Forest Service) to improve wildlife habitat and reduce hazardous fuels in the Hunter Creek Valley. Biologists were pleased to observe widespread evidence of wildlife browsing the fresh growth that sprung up in the treatment area throughout the summer.
Special thanks to our young volunteers who made ACES kids' programs such a success this summer: Jenna, Rivka, Charlie, Kemper, Kelly, Jackie, Rebecca, Ananth, Kevin, Madeline, Hunter, Tanner, William, Camy, Phineas, and Lucy.
Thank you for biking to ACES!
We would like to thank the City of Aspen's Transportation Options Program (TOP) for once again funding the Hallam Lake Bike Board challenge, which rewards participants for biking, walking, or bussing to ACES for week-long summer programs!
This summer, over 120 kids participated in the challenge and over 40 bike bells were awarded to kids who used alternative transportation for an entire week. Participants were also entered into weekly drawings to win gift cards to local businesses, such as Red Fox Frozen Yogurt, who donated prizes for the challenge.
Our bike racks were full and you helped to limit cars on the roads and in our parking lots; all working towards reducing our collective carbon footprint!
Save the Dates for Summer 2017:
Picnic on the Preserve Membership Dinner - Monday, June 12, 2017
Raptor Fair - Monday, July 3, 2017
An Evening on the Lake - Thursday, July 13, 2017
~ Eliza Burlingame