Scavenger hunt at Loveland benefits Alliance for Sustainable Colorado
Summit Daily News
The sunshine brought the crowds – and costumes – to Loveland Ski Area’s annual Scavenger Hunt on Saturday, a ludicrous event sending teams scattering across the mountain, all to benefit the Alliance for Sustainable Colorado.
A wizard on skis, a team of butt-heads, a band of gorillas, Elvis on a snowboard, feathers, dresses and more – they all chased after clues, characters and tokens as they sought the solutions to riddles and played games to earn points in the hunt.
Better weather this year brought about 180 people to the fifth annual event. It’s the third year registration money, raffle tickets (this year, they raffled off a pair of Rocky Mountain Underground custom skis with a New Belgium laminate that were re-donated and auctioned for $700) and donations have benefited the Alliance.
“This is by and far the biggest one,” said Shawn Hines, New Belgium’s Central Rockies sponsorship manager. The brewing company also runs a scavenger hunt at Taos and Telluride.
He said the goal is to create a “win-win-win” situation for the partners involved.
Loveland gets recognized, the Alliance gets money and face time, and New Belgium gets a chance to market its product – not just the beer, but the culture.
“For us, it’s relational,” Hines said. “We don’t make any money on this, and we don’t care to.”
Instead, it’s about sitting on the lift with the consumers – Hines calls it “chair lift marketing.”
“I want to say it’s the beer, and I want to say it’s the people, but it’s more hanging out with people in costumes and then having a beer,” Hines said, summarizing the event and his favorite parts about it.
Allison Knapp, who participated in the event, agreed.
“It’s about the sunshine, great people and beer,” she said.
And it’s extremely beneficial for the Alliance.
“From our perspective, we just love partnering with New Belgium,” said Anna Zawisza, education and outreach coordinator for the Alliance. They also work together during the Tour de Fat. “They’re everything we’re all about, but they have beer,” she added, referring to New Belgium’s focus on sustainability.
The fun event gives the organization the chance to show off ots mission, “to advance sustainability through collaboration among nonprofits, business, government and education,” their website states. One primary goal is to advance business practices that subscribe to the triple bottom line of economic, environmental and social sustainability benefits in Colorado, all through partnerships and networks.
“It’s a pretty positive story,” executive director Joanne Keys said, adding that public policy is another area the group focuses on. More than 50 House and Senate bills were passed in 2010 that were promoted by the Alliance Center, a group of nonprofits working together in a historic building in downtown Denver. In 2009, the number was around 45, Keys said.
Zawisza said it’s not just about presence at the event itself. Social media is a big player, particularly when New Belgium highlights its connection with the Alliance online, visible to their 150,000 Facebook followers.
“That there is worth its weight in gold,” Zawisza said.
And the financial benefit helps. Loveland spokesman John Sellers said the scavenger hunt raised $2,800 for the organization.
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