BOEC in the News

Archive for Summit County

BOEC to Celebrate Completion of Headquarters & Logistics Center at Grand Opening Celebration & Open House

Monday, June 10th, 2019

The newly remodeled BOEC Headquarters & Logistics Center

Breckenridge, Colo., June 10, 2019 – After a 3-year, $2 million capital campaign comes to a close, Breckenridge Outdoor Education Center (BOEC) looks to show off its new digs with a Grand Opening Celebration and Open House on Saturday, June 15th from 1 pm to 4 pm at 524 Wellington Road in Breckenridge. The core project of the campaign was a complete remodel and update of the administrative and logistics center, including critically-needed seasonal staff housing, upgraded administrative offices, and improved warehousing for outdoor adaptive equipment.

From 1 pm to 4 pm, all guests will have the chance to tour the new facility, learn more about BOEC, and take part in a celebratory toast at the 3 p.m. unveiling of the donor wall recognizing those that made all this possible. Light snacks and refreshments will be provided.

Established in 1976, BOEC is one of the oldest four-season adaptive outdoor educational organizations in North America and is a leader in innovative outdoor education curriculum, serving people with diverse abilities and special needs. Upgrades to BOEC HQ and Logistics center completed during this project will allow BOEC to meet the growing demand for increased program capacity.

“I am overwhelmed at the resources our community donated to the Campaign for the reconstruction of the Wellington headquarters, including Town of Breckenridge, Rockridge Building Company, Custom Mountain Architects, Columbine Hills Concrete and so many others,” said Tim Casey, BOEC Chairman of the Board (2010-2018). “It is our generous and committed donors who make what the BOEC does possible year after year and I am grateful to all of those who help the BOEC to continue to touch so many lives through our winter and summer programs.”

RSVP to Hallie Jaeger at today before all the champagne glasses are taken.

Randy Ford, Owner of Alpine Fishing Adventures, Talks About His Cinco Donation & His History with BOEC

Monday, April 22nd, 2019

Alpine Fishing Adventures Owner, Randy Ford

My name is Randy Ford, owner of Alpine Fishing Adventures. Along with this donation of a guiding fishing charter, I wanted to share my story and thank you for your contribution to the BOEC by attending this event (36th Annual Cinco de Mayo Celebration). Your contributions will do amazing things for a variety of people who have the will to live and enjoy despite life’s most difficult circumstances.

In 1994 at 19 years old, I found myself paralyzed from the neck down with a C4/C5 spinal cord injury after a skiing accident. Due to the incomplete nature of my injury, after 7 months, I was able to step out of Craig Hospital upright on two feet using Canadian crutches. With various impairments throughout my body I was faced with a whole new situation in life with some difficult circumstances ahead of me.

For quite some time once I left Craig Hospital, I attended clinical physical and occupational therapies, and despite some of the amazing and talented caregivers I had, I was at a plateau in my recovery and felt like I reached a dead end. I started to become depressed and had feelings of giving up, I had begun to lose my will to keep fighting for more recovery. Through it all, something I did realize, was the time I had spent with the Craig Hospital Therapeutic Recreation Department was some of the most enjoyable time I had spent since my injury occurred and within a year and a half after my injury, I found that best way to wash my depression and pain away was to emerge myself back into activities and exploration in the alpine environment. It became my best therapy, and it’s the same type of therapy that inherently comes along with the BOEC outings.

Through my own experiences, and having spent time helping out on BOEC adapt ski, and fishing outings, I am a witness to how participating in activities in the mountainous environment can expose the body to physical, occupational, psychological, and spiritual therapies. For me, it challenged my motor skills by being in situations navigating different terrains in the alpine conditions. It helped increase my abilities for motor movements and strength. My mind and body where challenged to come up with more ways to move and adapt, I learned how to use my body differently to accomplish movements and tasks. It built confidence and independence, and it kept me in touch with what was true to me spiritually. It was like taking an antidepressant, going to clinical therapy, attending church, and having a blast all in one shot. It was my best medicine.

I am contributing this fishing trip from my company Alpine Fishing Adventures, because I want the funds raised by bidding on this trip to help others get the same kind of benefits I received by participating in activities in the mountains.

Once again, thank you for your contributions. And thank you for your bids on this fishing trip. I will give it my all to show you a fantastic time on Dillon Reservoir!

BOEC Breaks Ground on New Facility

Thursday, April 27th, 2017

For the past several years, Breckenridge Outdoor Education Center (BOEC) has been planning and raising funds for major facility upgrades at its headquarters and program sites in Breckenridge.  Core to this plan is the creation of the BOEC Basecamp, a major remodeling and expansion of the Town of Breckenridge aging Sanitation Building on Wellington Street to meet critical functions and needs of the BOEC. These needs include the following:

Seasonal Staff Housing

The creation of seasonal field staff housing will enable BOEC to better attract and retain high quality staff, the most important element in our future success.  With the high cost of living in Summit County, seasonal field staff members struggle to make ends meet.  The standard in the outdoor programming industry is to provide low to no cost housing.  BOEC’s goal is to provide seasonal housing for 10 – 16 core staff in each season, summer and winter. This offers a major benefit to staff, making working for us more affordable and more easily attainable, and would potentially increase tenure.

Logistical Support and Warehousing in Support of BOEC Programs

Adaptive outdoor education and recreation requires an enormous amount of gear, from rafts to adaptive cycles to canoes to coolers and stoves.  Adequate warehouse storage and preparation space is extremely important to program quality and to the current and future success of BOEC.  Improvement and expansion of our support facilities at the BOEC Basecamp will position BOEC for many years to come to deliver the highest quality outdoor experiences possible.

Office Space for Administrative Support of BOEC Programs

Administrative support of our programs is critical to our success as well, requiring effective, efficient and accessible office space.  The BOEC Basecamp facility will include modern, functional workspace and IT support for our 10 – 12 administrative staff.

Office Space for other non-Profit, outdoor-oriented organizations

BOEC Basecamp will also provide office space to house 2 – 3 other outdoor-oriented non-profit organizations.  This shared space increases the collaboration and synergy between organizations with similar missions. Current organizations include Summit Huts and the Colorado Avalanche Information Center.

The Town of Breckenridge Sanitation Department building, built in the early 70’s and in urgent need of renovation, is the perfect site for the BOEC Basecamp.  Not only is it located in Breckenridge and only a short distance from our Wilderness Campus and Adaptive Ski and Ride School, it has the essential infrastructure, layout and opportunities for improvements that we seek.  The Town has extended a 50-year lease to BOEC that will allow us to make the improvements that will serve us well into the future. Planned additions and improvements include the following:

  • Add a 2,400 sq. ft. third floor to the building to accommodate staff housing for our seasonal staff. Housing will feature individual rooms for 10 – 16 staff members with communal living, kitchen and bathroom facilities, much like lodging at a fire station.
  • Construct a new pitched composite roof to replace the existing deteriorating flat asphalt roof. This improvement will improve the heat efficiency of the building as well as better handle the snow load.
  • Replace entire siding, repair windows and repaint. A new façade will enhance the professional image of our business as well as neighborhood appearance. Window repair will improve our energy efficiency.
  • Replace the obsolete heating system with an energy efficient boiler.
  • Replace obsolete bi-fold garage doors with sliding track doors. New doors will enhance safety and efficiency of the warehouse space.
  • Add an elevator that will access all three floors of the building. Currently, there is no assisted access to the upper floors, not the standard we need to best serve our constituents with disabilities.
  • Add loft storage to the warehouse space. As our operations have grown so has equipment inventory.  New lofts will make better use of the high ceiling warehouse space and expand storage capacity by 60%.
  • Add new floor coverings and interior paint; remodel and upgrade bathrooms. A refreshed interior will enhance our professional image and provide employees and guests with a more attractive and usable space.
  • Landscaping and expanding/resurfacing the parking lot.

Construction begins in April 2017, with a groundbreaking ceremony on April 26th, 1 PM. The project should be completed by the spring of 2018, in time for the summer 2018 operating season.

BOEC Basecamp has been made possible due to the generous donations and in-kind support of many individuals, businesses and foundations.  A special thanks to major contributors Peter Joyce and Rockridge Building, Jon Gunson and Custom Mountain Architects, the Town of Breckenridge, Tim Casey, Scott Downen and Columbine Hills Concrete, C&C Swanson Foundation, Breckenridge Grand Vacations/BGV Gives, The Summit Foundation and J.W. Kieckhefer Foundation.  A full list of contributors can be found at the BOEC website


Eric Mamula, Tim Casey (Chairman, BOEC) and Tim Gagen (former Breck Town Manger)

Eric Mamula and Jon Gunson (Custom Mountain Architects)

Tim Gagen (former Breck Town Manager), Wendy Wolfe (Town Council), DJ Schappert and Peter Joyce (Rockridge Building), Tim Casey (Chairman, BOEC), John Warner (former Mayor of Breck)

Jon Gunson, Eric Mamula, Tim Gagen, Wendy Wolfe, Peter Joyce, Tim Casey, Jeffrey Bergeron, Mike Dudick, John Warner, DJ Schappert, Meg Nuttleman, Bruce Fitch

DJ Schappert and Peter Joyce (Rockridge Building)

Deb Edwards (BGVGives) and Meg Nuttleman (Summit Foundation)

Mike Dudick (Town Council and Breckenridge Grand Vacations), Tim Casey (Chairman, BOEC) and Eric Mamula (Mayor of Breck)

Breckebeiner More Than Skiing

Sunday, April 12th, 2009

By Bryce Evans
Summit Daily News
Summit County, Colorado

BRECKENRIDGE – Ron Roe had only skied a few laps around the trails of the Breckenridge Nordic Center by noon on Saturday, but the 62-year-old Denver resident already seemed more than satisfied with his day.

After all, he was doing something that he loved – Nordic skiing – and was doing it for a cause close to his heart.

Saturday was the seventh annual Breckebeiner 60k Nordic Ski-a-thon and Snowshoe Bash, an all-in-good-fun sort of race where participants attempt to ski 60 kilometers around the Nordic center to raise money for the Breckenridge Outdoor Education Center (BOEC) scholarship fund.

In the theme of the BOEC, which helps to empower people with disabilities through sports and outdoor activities, Roe understands the importance that athletics has on people’s lives. He’s a third-degree black belt and instructor in Taekwondo, not to mention an avid downhill and cross country skier.

Oh, and he’s blind.

“Anything to help raise money for the center,” Roe gave as his reason for skiing in the Breckebeiner. “No other reason than that. They’ve helped me in the past, so I’d like to help however I can do it.”

And that was the sentiment shared by most Saturday in Breck as a couple hundred people came out to show their support of the BOEC. Each participant either took up sponsorship or pledged their own money for the race, giving either a lump sum or a per-kilometer amount.
One big party The idea for the race came from BOEC co-founder Gene Dayton, who – after his wife threw him a 150-person surprise party for his 50th birthday – decided that if that many people were gathering at once, it might as well be for a better cause than himself.

“I told my wife that when I turn 60, I want to do something different and have more meaning to the day,” Dayton said. “So, I asked people to come ski with me 60 kilometers and pledge money to the scholarship fund for the BOEC.”

Though the Breckebeiner no longer celebrates Dayton’s birthday, it still resembles one big party. With barbecues blazing and the music of accordian-player Helmut Fricker – whom Dayton refers to as the “icon of the event” – filling the air, skiers and snowshoers made their loops past the Nordic center clubhouse.

Looking around Saturday at what his event has become, Dayton couldn’t help but feel proud. Although, it wasn’t entirely because of the lively atmosphere.

“It was only a hope that it could get this big,” Dayton said. “We don’t really worry about how big it is, exactly, but rather how it helps the need.”
Filling a void The “need” is what drove Dayton and a handful of others to start the BOEC in 1976.

“We needed a program to just put lives back together and empower people,” Dayton said.

Aris Sophocles, M.D. is in his fourth term as chairman of the board of directors for the BOEC and has been with the organization since it started. As Sophocles put it, the BOEC has three main purposes. The first is to operate adapted ski programs at both Breckenridge and Keystone. Secondly, the BOEC runs a Wilderness program which helps make warm-weather, outdoor activities, such as camping, river trips and various classes, accessible to people with disabilities. Finally and most importantly, Sophocles said, the BOEC trains interns to implement BOEC-like programs across the country.

“Right from the beginning, we realized that if we didn’t train people to do this work, our impact would only be local,” Sophocles said. “If we could figure out how to train them well, we could have a broader impact.”

It worked – BOEC-trained interns are now doing work in 39 states and 11 countries, according to Dayton.

“The need is so far reaching,” Dayton added. “It’s through the country and the whole world that people need this.”
Pushing the limit Most skiers attempted to take on the designated 60k, Saturday, but a couple others attempted a much harder feet.

Locals Greg Ruckman and Justin Easter set out to complete 150 kilometers of skiing Saturday.

In last year’s Breckebeiner, Easter skied 120k, which helped to raise nearly $10,000, Dayton said. So, this year, the Summit Nordic Club head coach decided to up the ante, and Ruckman decided to join in.

The skiers set out at 12:01 a.m., but after 108k, Easter had to call it quits.

“It was OK; I was hoping to go farther,” an obviously exhausted Easter said while lounging on a sofa in the Nordic center clubhouse.

A former Olympic and world champion rower, Ruckman completed the distance in 11 hours, 27 minutes and 15 seconds, according to Dayton.

Easter, 27, was glad that “one of them was able to do it,” but more pleased for what it meant for the BOEC. Easter, who moved to Summit County after racing professionally for a number of years in Montana, said that he believes deeply in what the BOEC stands for.

“I believe in skiing so much,” he said. “It’s something I’ve made my life out of – racing and coaching. It’s something that can make a difference for people.”

For Roe, who participates “quite often” in the BOEC programs, the impact the center has had on him has been invaluable, and he was more than happy to return the favor by skiing in the Breckebeiner.

“They have helped so many people through the years and really made a difference,” Roe said of the BOEC. “This is the least that I can do.”

Our Partners

Town of Breckenridge LogoBreckenridge Resort LogoKeystone Logo