Nonprofit Organizations


A Night in the Park still a favorite event in Evergreen

Written by Linda Kirkpatrick on .

The Mountain Area Land Trust (MALT) has been drawing supporters to the meadow behind the Alderfer Barn for many years now.  Those who attended would often be entertained by the elk and a grand sunset behind the rock outcroppings known as the Three Sisters (and a brother, if I'm not mistaken).  

The Night in the Park event used to piggyback with performances of the National Repertory Orchestra when it performed under the tent, enabling the group to avoid having to pay to rent a tent and have it set up for a single evening.  In the early days MALT worried about merely covering costs and raising a little money.  Members of Mountain Foothills Rotary used to cook the steaks, and everyone on the MALT board had to help in one way or another with hanging lights, making appetizers or desserts, serving food or serving drinks.

Although the live music has ALWAYS been terrific (Dakota Blonde this year), MALT has come a long way over the years in building its support base – the size of the tent has doubled.  The event is officially catered, and trained bartenders have replaced the volunteers. Members of Mountain Foothills Rotary still volunteer to help with parking cars though.  And many of the same faces turn out every year to support the organization that reflects what they love most about living in the area: open space.

It's become a tradition to honor one or more people who have played significant roles in fulfilling MALT's mission.  The Bud Simon Preservationist of the Year Award (named after one of MALT's former board members who did so much to bridge the gaps between land-owners and developers) went to Hillary Merritt this year.  Hillary, a project manager for Trust for Public Lands, was instrumental in MALT's securing a parcel of land on Floyd Hill that will provide the link to open to the public 12,000 acres of open space, heretofore inaccessible.

Bob Meade of Evergreen was named MALT's Land Steward of the Year for donating to MALT 41 acres of land in Kittredge.  It's land he'd owned and cared for for many years.

Unlike many fundraising events, people who support MALT come prepared to raise the paddle in support of their efforts.  Just a few years ago I was amazed when the professional auctioneer announced a goal of $30,000 and asked in a playful manner, "Does anyone want to make this simple and write a check for that right now?"  And someone did!  The donations for land conservation aren't "easy," but they've certainly gotten to be easier to come by in recent years than they were earlier on!  This year, before adding in the income from ticket sales, the silent auction, or the live auction, the paddle raise alone brought in more than $70,000 in a matter of minutes.  Emcee Reggie Rivers worked his touch on the audience, making every bidder feel instrumental to the cause.

To learn more about the many accomplishments of MALT, click here.


Evergreen couple instrumental in establishing educational opportunities in Mexico

Written by Staff Editor on .

La Santa Cecilia, the Grammy Award-winning Latino band will headline “Baja Under the Stars” on September 15th, at the Denver Botanic Gardens, a fundraising event to help bring high quality educational opportunities to students in Todos Santos, Baja California Sur, Mexico.

“Baja Under the Stars,” is the brainchild of two Denver-area couples, David and Cindy Higgins and Greg and Angelica Robinson, who divide their time between Denver and Todos Santos. Both are long-time supporters of The Palapa Society of Todos Santos, a multi-cultural non-profit organization that works in partnership with the International Community Foundation, to improve the quality of life and offer educational opportunities through scholarships and educational programs.

Todos Santos, one of Mexico’s Pueblo Magicos (population 6,000), sits on the Pacific coast about 50 miles from Cabo San Lucas. Angelica Robinson says, “Despite a growing international population and reputation for a vibrant arts and music scene, educational opportunities for local students have been limited.”

When Evergreen residents David and Cindy Higgins built a second home in Todos Santos ten years ago, Cindy Higgins noted, “We became aware that education in our pueblo provided no pathway to university education.”

In 2014, the Higgins family funded the project to build the new Palapa Society campus. The 4-building complex includes a community library, English language program, and a middle and high school. Classes begin August, 2017.

Proceeds from “Baja Under the Stars” will fund scholarships, teacher salaries, technology, and resources for the new school.

“Baja Under the Stars” kicks off at 5:30 pm, September 15, with a VIP Champagne Cocktail party, dinner, and performance by La Santa Cecilia. Tickets, a portion of which are eligible for a tax-deduction, may be purchased online at:

Angelica Robinson urges the Denver community to support the cause. “We felt strongly that the Denver community would be receptive to a fundraiser supporting the educational needs of Todos Santos. When we first fell in love with Todos Santos, we were struck with the similarities between Denver and Todos Santos -- the cultural life and incredible outdoor activities in an extraordinary natural setting. When you fall in love with an unique place like Todos Santos, you feel compelled to give back.”

Higgins agrees, “We are proud to share this worthy cause with all our Colorado friends and invite them to participate in this special evening.”

For more information about the Palapa Society and sponsorship opportunities:


Natural Grocers to hold hiring event

Written by Staff Editor on .

Natural Grocers will hold a hiring event at the EChO Jobs Center on Wednesday, July 19th between 1 and 4 pm. The store will be hiring for full-time and part-time positions at both the Evergreen and Conifer locations.  The company is looking for Department Mangers, Department Assistants, Customer Service/Cashiers.

The EChO Jobs Center is located in the Evergreen North Shopping Center at 3721 Evergreen Parkway, Suite 6.

Apply at for immediate consideration


Elks have fun golfing to raise money to give away

Written by Staff Editor on .

The Evergreen Elks raised money for area charities on Monday, June 26th, at Hiwan Golf Course.  More than $6,000 was collected through 70 golfers and 38 sponsors, according to Larry De Cicco, one of the organizers.

"Jim Mitchell did yeoman duty," Larry continued, "by by not only raising sponsorships and organizing much of the tournament, but by doing all the registration the day of the tourney."

Maintenance Managers, Pine Grove Excavating, and MJR Paving were the Platinum Sponsors.

The winning team was comprised of: Bob Walker, Marty Smith, Kevin Walden, Justin Ginther. Seconnd Place honors went to: Scott Moriarty, Mike Nelson, Kevin Kulbacki, Eli the Eagle

Other honors: longest drive – (Men) Dave Croce, (Women) Karen Heydman; closest to the hole – (Men) Jon Weeks – (Women) Kristi Moriarty.

Betting-hole winners:  par 3, hole 8: Juel De Cicco and Bonnie Bogart; par 3, hole 12: Jill Beasley and Dana Snyder; par 5, hole 15: Sharon Jones and Betsy Hennessy.


A 30-year-old watering hole on Interlocken

Written by Stephen Knapp on .

It’s 6 a.m. on July 4, and Hiwan residents Priscilla O’Leary and her husband, Mike, are hard at work.

Priscilla and Mike are just 2 of the roughly 150 volunteers whose selfless sweat and support ensure that Evergreen’s annual Freedom Run 5K runs like an All-American Swiss watch. As bright orange dawn starts to break across the eastern sky, others are busily placing signs and cones along the route, checking in runners, and prepping for the monster after-party at Nick’s Pro Fitness. On their quiet stretch of Interlocken Drive, the O’Learys hustle to erect rows folding tables in front of their home, and to deck the street’s thick walls of green pines in red, white and blue.