The 2016 Annual Dinner and Meeting went off without a hitch this year — much to the relief of the Annual Dinner Committee!
Contrary to the event last the previous November (The 2015 Annual Dinner that almost wasn’t), all went smoothly this year. Gary Johnston, the chair of the Annual Dinner Committee, deserves full credit for pulling together volunteers, and keeping everyone organized. Carrie Simon and Kahle Toothill helped with marketing, soliciting donated beverages from Upslope Brewing, and making the very important contact with Pemba Sherpa, owner of the Sherpa Restaurant and the trekking and mountain guiding service, Sherpa Ascent International. Pemba had the unique distinction of being both our featured speaker as well catering the delicious Nepalese food provided — a first in our history of speakers, and the first time in a long time the dinner had been catered.
After enjoying an hour of socializing while observing the pictures contributed to the rotating slide show by local CMC members, dinner was served. Three different sumptuous entrees, accompanied by tasty naan bread, and hot chai made for a filling and nutritious meal. This was followed by more America-styled desserts of cake, pie and ice cream.
To start the Annual Meeting, Rick Casey helped to recognize the volunteers who had played so many roles this previous year, among the Council, trip leaders, school instructors, Annual Dinner committee members, and, not to forget, our two BMS graduates: Kahle Toothill and Gary Johnston. Bryan Costanza then gave a spirited review of a new and upcoming section of the CMC, the Trailblazers. Though the new state-wide group (or “section”) is targeted towards the twenty to forty age group, Bryan said “they don’t turn anybody away” who wants to attend their hikes and social gatherings. For more information about this new group, see the Trailblazers section on the CMC website.
Next, continuing the annual meeting segment, Rick Casey took the podium to inform the audience what had been happening with the Boulder group over the past year, which had been rather tumultuous. Serving as newly elected Council Chair at the time, it fell to his responsibility to react to the news in late December 2015 that the Clubroom would need to be vacated with less than 30 days notice. Fortunately as it worked out, a new Clubroom location was found nearby, in fact just downstairs in the same Table Mesa shopping center. Valiantly, loyal CMC members answered the call to help move the Clubroom on short notice this short distance on January 30, 2016. But this was little comfort, because what the Council learned was that the Clubroom had been subject to such 30 days notice all along, and that their sublease from Neptune Mountaineering could have been broken at any time. Due to this continuing uncertainty, Rick described how the Council was exploring a possible arrangement to use the offices of the American Mountain Guides Association and the Access Fund. They had joined forces earlier this year to move to a new location together, driven by the mounting commercial real estate prices in Boulder to abandon their own separate offices near downtown Boulder.
The annual meeting came to its traditional close by Rick handing over the CMC branding iron to Gary, and Gary then calling for election of the slate of new Council members. (Please see this webpage for the listing of current Council members.) It should be noted that there were no new members elected to the Council, and only vacancies were created, significantly for the secretary and treasurer. (More on this topic below.)
With business done, the presentation turned to a more distant and exotic land, Nepal, but with no less serious topics. Pemba Sherpa gave a detailed and far ranging talk and slideshow focused on the history of his native country, and he had gone back to help his village with three distinct projects of his own initiative, prior to the devastating 2015 earthquakes. After that tragic event, Pemba redoubled his efforts, resulting in nearly herculean amounts of material and financial aid that he helped raised for his village and surrounding region, strictly through friends, benefactors and local benefit events.
In the end, the Council made clear to the audience that the Boulder Group is struggling from a lack of volunteers helping with Council, the schools and with trips. Most critically, there are opening on the Council for Secretary and Treasurer, both key positions.
Fortunately, Jason Kintzel, the Cabins Committee chair, has stepped forward to volunteer as the interim Treasurer. But the Council is urging any CMC members who would like to volunteer for either of these positions to please contact Gary Johnston, email@example.com.