"Yeah, it's just like the Hunger Games except no one's trying to kill me".
--Abigail Salyers, age 13 (about END-FAR)
I just received word that out of 31 applications for the State of North Dakota Tourism Expansion Grant, the Red River Boat House Project was number 1! What that means is that we've now got 24K of committed funding for the project. That's enough to buy two containers and pay for the modification of one of them, and possibly do some site development. Add to that a potential fundraiser by Cabelas for the dock and hopefull involvement from a few other awesome local businesses and we're finally getting somewhere!!! So excited!
It is absolutely empowering to watch some of our GUP kids these days. In particular I'm thinking of my recent experience watching three young women (aged 11-13) participate in the Dewey Duathlon in Grand Forks, ND, last saturday. The conditions were so grim for the race (rain, unseasonably cold temps, and brutal winds) that nearly 1/4 of the registered participants decided to stay in bed. But the girls showed. They had to get special permission to even enter the race (the organizers hadn't thought anyone so young would even imagine doing the whole thing... thats what the stand alone 5K was for). All three finished. There was only one other female under 19 entered, and she was 18. Long story short, I am so thrilled to get to watch these girls grow up. There is something truly amazing about what happens when you hit your low and keep going. It is breathtaking to see it happening for some of our kids before they are even out of middleschool. The experiences and the rewards of those experiences that these girls are having are something that only a tiny fraction of people ever have. And to think that they are only just getting started.....
The Ground UP climbing team travelled from the pond to the ocean this past weekend as they headed to Minneapolis to participate in one of the largest climbing competitions in the midwest, Vertical Endeavors "Jug or Not" event. All 11 team members, 4 of the coaches, and one team parent ended up challenging themselves against the massive 60+ foot walls and extraordinarily deep field of competitors. The kids all did fabulously well and exemplified our team rules - they had fun, climbed hard enough to fall, and were supportive of each other. In fact, they were the most vocally supportive group in attendance and their voices were often heard carrying through the massive facility as they cheered each other on. As a coach I couldn't be more proud. Well done team! Check out Photos of the event HERE.
A big thanks to the Coalition for a Healthy Greater Grand Forks for providing $500 of assistance this spring for Ground UP adventures adventure programming! The funds will be used to help pay for goodies that will be enjoyed by participants of the Family Adventure Race, and to help offset costs and provide supplies for the Adventure Racing Camp slated for mid June. We can't thank them enough for their support of our endeavors!
The Extreme North Dakota Future of Adventure Sports Team, END-FAST, has had a busy February. Elizabeth Carr, aged 15, competed in the Grand Forks winter series. She placed second in the 5K frozen feat and second in the beginners category at Bikecicle, both held on February 16th. She went on to place third overall in the Yetiess (solo) category at ENDracing's Iceman Triathlon on Saturday, Feb. 23rd. Her efforts led her to the top spot in the series overall. Junior members of the team, including Meghan (11) and Erin Peck (12) and Lucy Glessner (12), all ran their first 5K during the frozen feat and went on to compete as a relay team in the Iceman Triathlon, finishing in the middle of the field. Team member Rosa Grijalva (13) also competed in the Iceman on a second sponsored youth team. And like good Ground UP adventures ambassadors, all four junior girls headed out for a Sunday morning of ice climbing as a means of race recovery.