My wife and I moved to the Vail Valley 10 years ago from Ft. Worth, TX. I had been working with High School Students at a church for a few years and came out here that August to Officiate a wedding on top of Vail Mountain. I went home with a job offer and we got out here as soon as we could!
Moving to a small town from a big city brought some major cultural experiences. Which way do you go at a roundabout? What is a roundabout? Why did that guy yell at me in that roundabout? Why is no one ever dressed up? What is mtn time? These perplexed us for a few weeks but we loved it all!
The job I took was to be the new Student Pastor at The Vail Church. I couldn’t wait to ski with the students and call it “relationship building.” Soon enough I realized that I needed to get our students off to camp for a week. Which, in the world of students, means fundraising, everyone’s favorite thing! With so many students being active out here I decided that a bike ride fundraiser would be fun and that each student could get pledges for every mile they would ride. Using gravity to our advantage we decided to do a 50 mile ride, which is a lot IF you don’t ride bikes very often. It is not a lot when you start at the Summit of Vail Pass down hill for the fist 25 miles ☺!
We had about 30 students who needed to raise money and many of them didn’t have bikes suitable for the trip. Someone told me about “a guy named Mike who owns Venture Sports and is a great guy.” Lo and behold, after a short phone call, Mike said that he would love to help us out and saved the day. He donated a rental bike to each student, had one of his employees load all of the bikes onto their trailer AND took all of our students in the Venture Vans to the top of the Pass. Full service!
My favorite story from that trip was that one of our guys, Eric, raised $100 more than what the camp costed and used his extra money all week long to buy his friends (and the girls he was meeting) candy at the camp store.
My latest idea was to see if we could wax ski’s during our church services during the winter months. I had no idea how to wax ski’s but knew that Mike would. I called him up and, wouldn’t you know it, Mike did his thing! The following week I had someone from Venture teach me how to wax, 6 bars of wax, scrapers, and all of the tools for waxing. WE Wax While YOU Worship was born and everyone has loved it. Venture Sports folks, need I say more?