Cabot prepares to break Guinness record for world’s largest mac and cheese

first_imgOn Thursday, September 23, 2010, Chef John Folse will attempt to break the Guinness world record for the largest macaroni and cheese using Cabot Creamery Cooperative’s award-winning cheddar cheese to cook 2,100 pounds in a giant cast iron kettle on Fulton Square from 11:30 am to 2 pm.“We chose to partner with New Orleans’ nonprofits to celebrate all of the powerful work these organizations have contributed to the city,” said Roberta MacDonald, Senior Vice President of Cabot Marketing. “We hope our involvement will assist these organizations in their future efforts towards positive change.”As the current cheese fondue Guinness world record holder, Chef Folse will rely on 30 years of enormous-cooking experience when he blends Cabot Creamery’s famous cheddar cheese and butter, Brown’s Dairy’s 1,100 pounds of milk and King Arthur Flour with elbow macaroni and bread crumbs. The Guinness Book of World Records will be on-site and will measure and weigh the final product and verify its new world record status.While Cabot Creamery and Chef Folse are working hard to break the record, the achievement of this dish extends beyond executing a traditional southern comfort recipe: the meal’s success will incorporate several nonprofit organizations and, in return, benefit those organizations.The Magnolia School, a nonprofit organization that provides assistance to adults with intellectual or developmental disabilities, will provide homemade ceramic bowls for the event. All proceeds from all sales at the event will contribute to the New Orleans Area Habitat for Humanity’s housing efforts. In the past year, the New Orleans Area Habitat for Humanity has sheltered 93 new families with homes.Public officials and celebrities will pack bowls with warm-and-creamy pasta. The handmade bowls, piled high with mac and cheese, will cost $5 each. To pre-purchase bowl tickets visit local Rouses grocery stores.Entertainment will be provided by former New Orleans Jazz artist Samirah Evans, who is returning for the first time in three years to reunite with local musicians for this monumental event. As fate would have it, Hurricane Katrina caused Samirah and her husband Chris Lenois to seek out new living arrangements, so they moved to his native town of Brattleboro, Vermont in the fall of 2006.The National Association of Housing Cooperatives (NAHC) proudly shows their support for the New Orleans Area Habitat For Humanity and Chef Folse’s world record attempt when more than 400 NAHC members descend upon New Orleans for the 2010 NAHC 50th Annual Conference, September 22-25.  Legions of NAHC members will parade from their meeting to Fulton Square to attend the world record attempt and support the fundraising effort by purchasing hundreds of servings of Chef Folse’s mega-creation on behalf of the farm families who own Cabot Creamery Cooperative.The award-winning cheese is produced by Cabot Creamery’s combination of modern facilities and inspiring entrepreneurial spirit. Located in the green hills of Vermont, Cabot Creamery has been producing cheese since 1919.About Cabot CreameryCabot Creamery Cooperative has been in continuous operation in Vermont since 1919, and we make a full line of cheeses, yogurt, sour cream, cottage cheese, and butter. Best known as makers of “The World’s Best Cheddar,” Cabot is owned by 1200 dairy farm families located throughout New England and upstate New York. For additional information on Cabot Creamery, visit http://www.cabotcheese.coop(link is external)# # #last_img read more

Seventh Generation partners with Preserve’s ‘Gimme 5’ program to recycle plastic caps

first_imgSeventh Generation,From the ingredients in its products to the packaging, Seventh Generation is always evaluating how to reduce its environmental impact, increase product performance and safety and create a more sustainable supply chain. That’s why the company is proud to announce a partnership with Preserve’s “Gimme 5″ program, allowing customers to recycle #5 plastic right where they shop.”We’re always trying to increase the post-consumer content in our packaging,” said Peter Swaine, director of global strategic sourcing at Seventh Generation. “Now we’re fully closing the loop on our #5 plastic, making it easy for our customers to recycle their laundry caps so in turn we can create more sustainable packaging for the products they love.”Polypropylene plastic, or #5, is the material choice for bottle caps, spray bottle heads and baby wipe tubs due to its versatility and flexibility. #5 plastic is one of the most benign plastics. In addition, #5 can be easily recycled and reincarnated into new product.Consumers can now recycle their #5 plastic in the “Gimme 5” recycling bins that Seventh Generation is sponsoring along with Stonyfield Farms, Brita and Tom’s of Maine in Whole Foods Markets and other natural food stores across the country. Clean, used Seventh Generation bottle caps, spray bottle heads and baby wipe tubs can be placed in the nearest bin. Preserve will turn these used packages into new #5 plastic, allowing us to create new post-consumer packaging. For more information on Preserve’s “Gimme 5” program, visit: www.preserveproducts.com(link is external).ABOUT SEVENTH GENERATIONSeventh Generation is committed to being the most trusted brand of household and personal-care products for your living home. Our products are healthy solutions for the air, surfaces, fabrics, pets and people within your home — and for the community and environment outside of it. Seventh Generation also offers baby products that are safe for your children and the planet. The company derives its name from the Great Law of the Iroquois Confederacy that states, “In our every deliberation, we must consider the impact of our decisions on the next seven generations.” Every time you use a Seventh Generation product you are making a difference by saving natural resources, reducing pollution, and making the world a better place for this and the next seven generations.For information on Seventh Generation cleaning, paper, baby and feminine personal care products, to find store locations, and explore the company’s website visitwww.seventhgeneration.com(link is external). To read more about Seventh Generation’s corporate responsibility, visit the 2009 Corporate Consciousness Report at: www.7genreport.com(link is external).ABOUT PRESERVE Preserve is the leading sustainable consumer goods company and producer of stylish 100% recycled household products. Preserve turns yogurt cups into toothbrushes and take-out containers into tableware. Through innovations in recycled materials and sustainable design, Preserve has been creating more resourceful ways to make everyday products for the kitchen, table, and bathroom since 1996. The company is powered by the recycling efforts of individuals and companies via its Preserve Gimme 5 program. This program accepts #5 plastics, 98% of which are not normally recycled — such as yogurt cups and other common household containers — transforming them into new Preserve products. All recycling and manufacturing is done in the USA. Preserve pioneers partnerships with premier product design, manufacturing, and sales and marketing firms to bring together thought leaders to drive industry change. Preserve empowers people to make everyday choices that are better for the earth while offering real solutions without compromise. Preserve products can be found at forward-thinking retailers like Whole Foods Market, Target, and a variety of grocery and natural food stores. Visit us online atwww.preserveproducts.com(link is external).  May 5, 2011last_img read more

Adventure Families

first_imgOnce upon a time, parents weren’t parents. They were 20-something-year-olds with heads full of dreams, time and energy in spades. They did more than change diapers and watch Sponge Bob. For these five Blue Ridge families in particular, life before kids was measured in athletic benchmarks—podiums won, miles traveled, adventures undertaken.Yet even now, these parents aren’t just parents. They’re entrepreneurs and business professionals and mentors, yes, but they’re still athletes. They’re still training and racing and exploring, which begs the question—can you be an accomplished athlete and a first-rate parent too?Mommy GuiltSophie Carpenter Speidel of Charlottesville, Va., wasn’t always a runner. In college, running was a means to an end, a way to stay in shape for her lacrosse career, which eventually landed her on the US Women’s National Lacrosse Team from 1982 until 1984. So in 2005, when Speidel was toeing the line at the Massanutten Mountain Trails 100 Mile, her first 100-miler, just three years after her first ultra ever, no one was more surprised than she.“I had run the 10K at the Blue Ridge Burn for a few years and I loved it,” she says of her early trail running experiences. “I was set free, it seemed like.”Speidel taking to the trails early in her running career.But an ultra, let alone a 100-miler, is a far cry from a 10K, as Speidel quickly found out. Especially when it comes to training while trying to raise three kids under the age of 10. Knowing little about proper training tactics for a 100-miler, Speidel was in the woods all day, every day, every weekend. When she wasn’t running, she was reading about running. Running consumed her, exhausted her, but it also exhilarated her.“Ultra running can be very seductive, like any endurance sport, in terms of time and community,” she says. “It’s a great escape, especially in this day and age, to just be in the mountains all day. You can lose track of the reality of your life a little bit. Some people realize that and right the ship,” but often, as was the case with Speidel, there needs to be a catalyst first, a looming threat of capsizing, to change the trajectory.For Speidel, that moment came at the Bull Run 50 Mile in Clifton, Va. It was a beautiful, crisp morning. Speidel was making quick work of the course, moving with ease through rolling woods and across spring fed creeks. Speidel was in the zone, lost in her breath and the sounds of birds in the trees and leaves crunching underfoot. But almost halfway through the race, the course spit her out from the forest and back into the bustle of Clifton. And that’s when she saw it—a soccer field.“It was a typical Saturday morning in northern Virginia,” she says. “The course literally runs through this soccer field and as I’m running through, I’m looking around and seeing all of these families with kids. That race gave me huge mommy guilt. It’s unlike when you go out in the mountains and you’re away from it all.”Though her husband Rusty had mostly supported Speidel’s newfound obsession with running, it was starting to wear on their marriage. Even when Speidel was home, she was distracted, preoccupied with race reports and training methods. But after the Bull Run 50 Mile, Speidel came to grips with reality and made a change.“Your kids are only young once. If it doesn’t work, it doesn’t work and there will be plenty of time to do your thing later,” she says. “You gotta figure out what works for your family. Balance is a matter of trial and error.”Eventually, the couple fell into a rhythm of taking turns. Speidel ran on Saturdays and Rusty biked on Sundays. She continued running ultras, averaging about seven per year, all the while supporting Rusty and his goals, like finishing the Shenandoah Mountain 100. And when the kids were old enough to compete in organized sports of their own, Speidel prioritized that first, even if it meant missing out on her favorite races.“Throughout the parenting continuum, I’ve ebbed and flowed. I went from being gung-ho in the beginning, got a reality check, and now I have perspective. I missed out on years of races, but I didn’t mind. If you do mind, then something’s wrong.”[nextpage title=”Next Page”]Work Hard to Play HardFor triathlete Jay Curwen of Asheville, N.C., the reality check he needed came not from his wife Monica but from their first-born son. Curwen, who’s been a two-time USA World Triathlon Championship Team Member and National Champion adventure racer, knew that his athletic expectations would need some adjusting when kids came into the picture. But shifting his career, which at the time was working as a sales representative for Patagonia, was one change he didn’t expect to make.The Curwen family in their element.“My oldest was just a couple years old at that point, and in his memory, I was gone as much as six months at a time,” Curwen remembers. “That wasn’t the case. I was sometimes gone two weeks at a time, but that broke my heart because in his three-year-old mind, I was gone half a year.”Curwen ditched the traveling gig and found a job with the Nantahala Outdoor Center, which meant he could be present at home with his three sons while still being an active part of the Southeast’s outdoor industry. As for fitness, Curwen exercises whenever he can, even if it means answering work emails while cranking out miles on a stationary bike.“Up until Monica and I got married, athletics for me was all-consuming. Basically every part of my life I geared towards being an athlete and getting faster,” he says. “When I was 25, I didn’t leave anything to chance. If the guy beat me, it was because he was legitimately better than me. Now, if I win, I win, if I don’t, I don’t and it’s okay. I don’t pressure myself on the results anymore.”Don’t let Curwen fool you—his competitive fire hasn’t totally gone to ash. Just last year, Curwen won his age division at both the USA Triathlon Off-Road National Champions and the USA Triathlon Long Course Duathlon National Champions. The trick to staying moderately competitive while still being a present, engaged father, he says, is a combination of maintaining a base level of fitness, getting up early, and including the kids.“My boys have definitely seen their dad get his clock cleaned more times than not,” says Jay Curwen. “They’ve also seen me win a lot of things and, as a five-year-old, if you see nothing but your dad win, that becomes your expectation. I don’t want that to be any kind of example. I want them to be able to enjoy competing and not competing and not measure themselves against any other yardstick but themselves.”Training Smarter“Instead of training for triathlons, I stuck to running because it was something I could do while pushing them in the stroller,” says 37-year-old Sue Finney of Knoxville, Tenn.Finney is a wife and mother of three. Last September, she and her husband David opened their own gym, KyBRa Athletics. As if balancing all of that wasn’t enough, Sue also managed to recover from a broken foot and swipe the title as the 2016 XTERRA Southeast Regional Champion. Like Curwen, Sue knows she has to be realistic about how much time she can spend training for the upcoming XTERRA World Championships this year, but that’s all the more reason to make the most of what little time she does have.“You really don’t have time for lazy downtime,” she says of being a gym owner, mom, and athlete-in-training. “I train so much better now than I did in my 20s. Then, I would say, I just want to ride for fun today and I’ll work hard tomorrow, but now, I don’t know if I’ll have a tomorrow. What if a kid gets sick or there’s a snow day? I might train a little less, but I’m actually doing better. If I had my 20-year-old body with my 37-year-old mindset, I’d be a lot better of an athlete.”“Having kids really makes you live up to your potential,” adds her husband, David. “They also teach you to be more flexible and just a little more dynamic in how you live your life.”For David, that meant giving up the high-consequence stakes of steep creek, expedition-style kayaking that had defined his years as a member of the Riot Team. In his 20s, David’s life looked a lot like a spread in Rapid Magazine—pristine waterfalls, dense jungle canopy, shuttle rides on the back of mud-encrusted motorcycles. Every year, David would spend multiple months on whitewater trips in exotic destinations ranging from Thailand to Patagonia. David still paddles on the Southeast classics, but he’s more interested now in teaching his kids to paddle and introducing them to the element that has so influenced his life.“I don’t do a lot of things I would have done 20 years ago because if I got hurt or drowned, it would affect many more people than it would have when I was 20 years old and single,” he says. “You assess risk differently. It becomes less valuable to you to paddle the hardest rapids or go over the tallest waterfalls. Your kids don’t care. They just like to think you’re kayaking.”And more importantly, he says, they like to be a part of it. Holidays at the Finney household don’t involve a lot of gifts. Birthdays in particular, says Sue, are structured around experiences over material items. Their oldest, Kyra, 7, chose paddling the Nantahala for her birthday, and their middle child, Rachel, 4, wanted to go camping. Kyra recently got her very own mountain bike, and is anxiously waiting for the junior race season to begin. It’s moments like these, agree Sue and David, that make all of the hard work and dawn patrols worth it.“We get up early at 5 a.m., we don’t watch a lot of TV, or if we do we fall asleep to it, date nights aren’t usually movie-and-a-dinner but hire-a-babysitter-so-we-can-mountain-bike-together,” says Sue, “but if you can just make the kids part of it all, they’re happier. I hope I’m still racing when my kids are in high school, but I also hope that they’re out there kicking my butt.”[nextpage title=”Next Page”]No ExcusesThat philosophy of inclusion is sweeping the parenting world, particularly in younger generations of moms and dads. Just ask Blacksburg, Va., parents Luke Hopkins and Anne Pagano. You need only take a look at their Instagram feeds (@adventures_of_annie and @localpaddler) to see that athletically driven parents can have their cake and eat it, too.“You can still do everything you did before having kids, but there’s no question that things change to some degree or another,” says Pagano, “but they make baby backpacks for hiking, strollers for running, you can have a baby sit between your legs in a kayak and paddle on flatwater. It’s not easy, but there’s always a way.”Inclusion is key in the Pagano-Hopkins household.Hopkins, who grew up competitively kayaking and earned the podium twice at the US Freestyle World Championships (silver in 2001, bronze in 2003), and Pagano are leading the charge in the Southeast’s standup paddleboard scene. They’re regular contenders in regional SUP races like the Chattajack 31, the New River Gorge SUP Race, and the Tuck Fest SUP Cross. Hopkins works as sales manager for Onewheel, while Pagano is brand ambassador for Body Glove, Imagine Surf, Accent Paddles, and IceMule Coolers. The couple also stays busy hosting the destination SUP TV series Chasing Waves.“Having kids, for me, hasn’t really stopped my professional athlete career,” says Hopkins. “It’s not the, ‘I can’t,’ or, ‘I never,’ or, ‘Everything’s just changed,’ it’s the, ‘How can?’ attitude that’s made it possible for us to live the outdoor recreational lifestyle, still travel, and still make a living to support our family.”Their seemingly progressive parenting style is a mix between the skin-your-knee mentality on which many of us were raised and the summer camp pillars of trying hard and having fun. While the fall and winter months are pretty standard as far as most families go, summer months for their two girls, ages eight and five, are anything but. For the past three years, the family has lived on the road out of an RV for the summer, traveling, exploring, and for Hopkins, working at a dozen outdoor industry events.At the very least, their girls have a childhood full of experiences most adults can only dream of—paddling the Allagash River in Maine, exploring and paddling on the Skookumchuk in British Columbia, paddling the Salmon River and soaking in Idaho’s hot springs, hiking in Arches National Park, paddling Oregon’s Columbia River Gorge…you get the picture.“Everything is definitely slower which wasn’t something I was used to,” says Pagano. “When I hike, I typically hike fast or run, but they have taught me to look around and collect acorns, find mushrooms, find the little frogs I wouldn’t see if I was running through the woods on my own. I have definitely learned to appreciate slowing down, savoring, and taking our time.”Cultivating GritThe relationship with time is ultimately what made Roanoke-based parents Bekah and Derrick Quirin decide to take their one-year-old baby Ellie on a thru hike of the Appalachian Trail. The Quirins, who are both 25, have always wanted to thru hike the trail. After graduating from college with degrees in outdoor leadership, they thought for sure they would hike the trail, but they got jobs, traveled out west, and then Bekah became pregnant.“I left my job to stay home with Ellie and joined this hiking group called Hike It Baby,” says Bekah. “One day, I realized that it might be a possibility [to thru hike with her] because Ellie was a lot happier being outside than inside. She loves the outdoors.”BRO-TV: Ellie on the AT from Blue Ridge Outdoors on Vimeo.After months of planning and deliberation, the Quirins set off on their flip-flop journey from Roanoke last month, with plans to hike south first to Springer Mountain before heading north to hike from Katahdin back to Roanoke. Their plan seems ambitious, maybe a little too ambitious to some—Ellie, who Bekah will be solely responsible for carrying while Derrick lugs the rest of their gear, will be going through her teething phase on the trail. But for both Bekah and Derrick, the benefits of spending all day, every day with Ellie during those eight allotted months far outweigh the challenges of hiking 12 miles a day with heavy packs.“Everybody says, ‘time flies,’ and then when you have kids, time flies even faster. We didn’t realize how true that was. When we thought about how we can make time slow down, that’s how we came to thru hiking,” says Bekah. “I’m sure I’ll definitely question at some point what in the world were we thinking taking this trip, but mentally, I want to have the perspective that even if we were still in our comfortable house with everything that is normal to most people, there are still going to be rough days. Doing a thru hike is hard, but raising a child in general is really hard, too.”Before you go judging the Quirins or Pagano-Hopkins household for raising van-lifer-dirtbags-in-the-making, recent studies show that the introduction of grit into a child’s life is more important to overall success than natural intellect or talent. According to Angela Lee Duckworth, a University of Pennsylvania psychologist who has studied grit for decades, instilling children with optimism at the first signs of discomfort, or failure, can make them more successful down the road.“Grit is living life like it’s a marathon, not a sprint,” says Duckworth in her TED Talk on grit. “It’s about having stamina, sticking with your future—day in, day out, not just for the week, not just for the month, but for years—and working really hard to make that future a reality.”Sounds like a thru hike, doesn’t it? While baby Ellie will likely only remember her white blaze trek in pictures, that exposure to her parents working hard, and possibly failing, will have a lasting effect on her grittiness.READ PAGE 4[nextpage title=”Next Page”]Words of WisdomWant to take the kids on your next outdoor adventure? Take a gander at these tried and true tips from our four families before you hit the trail.Start ‘em young!“When we moved to Charlottesville, to be honest with you, I didn’t even know about the Appalachian Trail. Later we tried taking them to Old Rag, but unless you really start them young, it’s hard.”—Sophie Carpenter + Rusty SpeidelKeep it fun.“As adults, we really don’t have too much trouble putting our head down and grinding out a workout, but when you’re 10 years old, that’s not what it’s about. It’s about having fun, and adults sometimes skip the fun part.”—Jay + Monica CurwenBring more food always.“Pack more food than you think. Exploring the outdoors takes a lot out of not only the kiddos, but the parents. ‘Hangry’ family members can ruin a day in the woods.”—David + Sue FinneyKeep it short and sweet.“Keep the length of your trip age appropriate. Younger kids tend to have shorter attention spans.”—Anne Pagano + Luke HopkinsGive yourself a break.“There are educators in the field that can do the job of teaching your kid things, whether it’s a ski instructor or paddling instructor, and I would encourage parents to lean on that resource rather than be the instructor yourself. I’ve seen my kids take the same advice and instruction I gave them from a professional because that instructor was not a parent. It’s money well spent.”—Jay + Monica CurwenBe prepared, but embrace spontaneity.“When traveling, pack lunches and scout out state parks or national forest ahead of time and take back roads as often as possible. Some of our most memorable experiences are the places we stopped for a picnic lunch or a break from driving.”—David + Sue FinneyTop 10 Destinations for Family Friendly FunOur four families shared their favorite places to go outside and play.Play + DineSpy Rock + Devils Backbone Brewing CompanyRoseland, VirginiaAt 3.1 miles roundtrip, this short hike in central Virginia won’t take all day, but when you’re dragging kids up a mountain, shorter is sometimes better. The trail climbs steadily to the Spy Rock summit, but that means it’s all downhill from there. Spend an hour or two basking in the 360-degree views of the Religious Range before heading back for a lunch or early dinner at Devils Backbone Brewing Company. When the weather’s nice, the outside seating and game area gives kids plenty of room to roam while the adults kick back by the fire pit with a locally crafted brew.Turk Mountain + Blue Mountain BreweryAfton, VirginiaWhat better way to greet the day than a 2.2-mile morning hike to the top of a mountain? You’ll climb 690 feet to reach the peak, but once you’re there, you’ll be greeted with talus slopes to scramble on and classic Virginia Blue Ridge views to soak in. Head back down for brunch at Blue Mountain Brewery, which usually has live music on Sundays during the warmer months.French Broad + Salvage StationAsheville, North CarolinaWant a carefree, scenic river float that requires minimal logistics? Head out on the class I-II section of the French Broad River. In the summertime especially, this portion of the French Broad can become crowded with weekend tubers. Start your float early and take out at the Salvage Station. This riverfront bar, concert, and event space is more outdoors than in, and regularly has free music, games, and rotating food trucks.Hit the WaterNantahala Outdoor CenterBryson City, North CarolinaNothing says summer like whitewater rafting. Take a guided trip down the class II+ Nantahala River with one of the center’s seasoned guides. Kids can also enroll in one of the center’s various paddling schools or clinic offerings to take full advantage of the professional expertise here.Fontana LakeAlmond, North CarolinaRent a boat, or bring some floating crafts of your own, and head out onto this spectacular 10,000-acre lake. Engulfed by the majesty that is the Great Smoky Mountains, Fontana’s 240 miles of shoreline afford the adventurous at heart endless opportunities to explore. Quiet coves and defined cliff bands make great stopping points to cool off with a swim or cliff jump.DuPont State Recreational ForestBrevard, North CarolinaHike or bike on DuPont’s 90-mile trail system. Situated at the heart of western North Carolina, this gem is easily accessible and can be as novice-friendly or as advanced as your family’s skillset allows. You would be remiss to plan an adventure here and not pay a visit to the waterfalls showcased in The Hunger Games. Given the stunning beauty of this North Carolina gem, even adults will find it hard not to channel their inner Katniss Everdeen.Summersville LakeSummersville, West VirginiaThe sandstone cliffs that border Summersville Lake are out-of-this-world cool, whether you’re a pontoon floater, a SUPper, or a climber. Take your craft of choice to any number of boater access ramps and spend the day on this pristine body of water.New RiverBlacksburg, VirginiaLargely overshadowed by the rompin’ class IV-V New River Gorge downstream, the upper stretches of the New River are every bit as scenic and fun. Though the rapids are sizably smaller, they serve as the perfect whitewater introduction for kids of all ages. Put in at McCoy Falls just 15 minutes outside of Blacksburg. Skilled paddlers can get in a quick surf here before floating tranquilly down the rest of the class I-II run.On BelayKnoxville’s Urban WildernessKnoxville, TennesseeOnly a few miles from downtown Knoxville, this recreation oasis encompasses 1,000 acres across 10 different parks and four civil war sites. There are over 50 miles of multiuse trails here, making the Urban Wilderness a popular destination among cyclists and runners, but new to the scene is the Ijams Crag, Knoxville’s only outdoor climbing area. The climbing crag features a diverse range in beginner to advanced sport routes and affords novice climbers an intimidation-free environment to learn the ropes.New River GorgeFayetteville, West VirginiaNo matter if you climb sport, trad, or boulders, the bullet-hard sandstone at the New provides. Hike in for miles on stunning trails to avoid the crowds, or park-and-climb within minutes of leaving your car. Though the New is notorious for sandbagging, there are a handful of walls that offer more moderate routes for families and novice climbers, such as Sandstonia and Butcher’s Branch. Take care in the summer, as these areas in particular can become especially crowded on the weekends.Photo by Luke HopkinsGet SchooledWith these 8 outdoor education centers so you, and your family, can feel safe about recreating.Nantahala Outdoor CenterBryson City, North CarolinaVoted “Best Raft Guide Company” in our 2017 Best of the Blue Ridge contest, the NOC is also one of the leading instructional centers for kayaking, swiftwater rescue, wilderness medicine, and, should you want to join the NOC raft guide ranks, raft guiding.Landmark LearningSylva, North CarolinaFor all things related to risk management, wilderness medicine, and backcountry response, Landmark Learning is the outdoor industry’s go-to educational organization. College students can even receive an entire semester’s worth of credits while gaining important industry certifications like Wilderness First Responder and Wilderness EMT.Outward BoundNorth Carolina, GeorgiaNo matter your age or experience level, Outward Bound has a course that will suit your needs. Trips can range from four days to almost three months and span all genres of outdoor adventure in every corner of the world, from sailing off the coast of Maine to backpacking in Patagonia.Fox Mountain GuidesPisgah Forest, North CarolinaLearn the ropes with Fox Mountain Guides, voted “Best Climbing Company” in our 2017 Best of the Blue Ridge contest and the only American Mountain Guides Association accredited guide service in the region. Beginners will gain a comprehensive understanding of rock climbing in an intimidation-free setting suited to their experience level, while even expert climbers will learn a thing or two from Fox Mountain’s seasoned guides.Adventure Sports Center InternationalMcHenry, MarylandTouted as the world’s only mountaintop whitewater course, this manmade whitewater center is unique not only in its setting but its outstanding raft guides and kayak instructors. Learn the basics of whitewater paddling in a relatively controlled environment and without the logistical stress of paddling remote rivers.New River Mountain GuidesFayetteville, West VirginiaWant your teen to get hooked on something other than Facebook and video games? Send them to a weeklong rock climbing course this summer with New River Mountain Guides. Between the world-class climbing, nightly campfires, and lasting friendships, it’s sure to be a summer your child will never forget.Wilderness VoyageursOhiopyle, PennsylvaniaMake the most of your next weekend getaway with a two-day immersion in kayaking. For decades, the whitewater paddling hub of Ohiopyle has churned out some of the world’s best paddlers, so you know the boating here has to be good. All equipment and gear is provided as well as transportation and lunches on the water.American Canoe AssociationVarious LocationsThroughout the year, the American Canoe Association partners with outfitters and paddling clubs across the country to offer a diverse array of courses such as swiftwater rescue, coastal kayaking, essentials of river kayaking, and SUP surf skills. Whether you’re a beach bum or a river rat, the ACA is your best bet for learning water safety and skills.last_img read more

For more impactful lending at your credit union, try digging a little deeper

first_img 182SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Scott Butterfield The competition for loans has never been greater. It’s a market long crowded with traditional and non-traditional players, including credit unions large and small looking for the best options to make the most of their efforts.In spite of drastically changing consumer social and economic demographics, most of us are still using the same old growth strategies when it comes to lending: solely seeking out prime borrowers for indirect, recapture (steal-a-loan), mortgage, and business lending. One percent new auto loan rates are common, an example of myriad “get lost in a sea of low-rate” offerings, each targeted to a prime borrower who can take their business anywhere. And while we are all slugging it out for the prime borrowers, the pool is shrinking.According to the Corporation for Enterprise Development (CFED), 55.6 percent of consumers have sub-prime credit. Consider this for a moment: when we limit our sights to prime borrowers, we effectively cut the potential loan market in half!What’s going on out there?Our consumer market is changing, with three key emerging markets growing in number that collectively have thinner or sub-prime credit files:Millennials (18-33 year olds)Lower- to moderate-income consumers (earn less than 80 percent of the area median income)Hispanics/ImmigrantsThese emerging markets are underserved, and for the most part overlooked. Ask most credit union leaders and they will tell you they want to grow millennials, but become skittish when they confront a thin file. Credit union leaders will also say they want more loyal members – it’s difficult to find more loyal members than lower-income consumers or those from minority communities who receive affordable access to credit. I believe (and scores of credit union best practices bear this out) that credit unions who dig a little deeper, reaching and lending to these emerging markets with sub-prime, thin credit files, are more relevant to their membership and to their communities.How to reach and serve these underserved credit marketsThere are hundreds of credit unions that have very long and successful track records serving consumers with little or no traditional credit histories. Talk to these expert lenders and your will sense their strong determination to approve more loans for their members. They don’t give up when they pull a thin file report. They know how to dig a little deeper…. They are no stranger to including payment histories for rent and utilities into the loan decision making process.Just ask Teri Robinson, President/CEO of Pacific Northwest Ironworkers Federal Credit Union. Teri has been digging deeper to serve members for years. Her passionate commitment to her members is demonstrated by finding more ways to get to an approval. This has led to dramatic member development stories, strong loan growth and higher profitability. Teri believes “We exist to serve and educate our members, we find and consider every piece of information we can about each member to help us in the decision making process, this includes non-traditional payment histories.”Today, credit union leaders like Teri are looking at new ways to assess the credit worthiness of the 64MM consumers with little to no traditional credit history.  Using comprehensive data and analytics, Experian partners with credit unions to continually improve ways to score and reach this underserved market. One specific and successful example is Experian’s Extended View Score, an FCRA-compliant credit model that pulls both traditional credit and alternative consumer information such as rental data and full file public records into one predictive score. This additional information helps credit unions to reach more members and get more approvals.Why it mattersTo be successful, each and every credit union must find spaces where they can compete and consistently win. Serving sub-prime and underserved consumers is a good market for thousands of credit unions that are trying to remain relevant and profitable in a rapidly changing environment. Here’s why I believe these markets are a good fit for so many credit unions:Values – Lending to underserved consumers is a core credit union value that will resonate – but you have to “walk the talk.”Aging membership – Credit unions’ traditional membership is reaching saturation point and is in need of younger borrowers. An average membership age of 49 is hurting many of us. None of us can afford to skip over the younger generations of borrowers.Future growth – Emerging millennial and Hispanic markets are growing rapidly. Millennials recently overtook the number of Boomers. The Hispanic/Latino market has reached 53 million, and is expected to reach 86 million by 2030, and 133 million by 2050. Successful credit unions will not ignore these demographic and economic realities.Middle market – Most mainstream financial lenders are focused on the middle market. That is where competition is the most intense. Underserved communities are predominantly ignored by mainstream lenders, giving credit unions a niche to win. Mid-sized and smaller credit unions can become “bigger fish in a smaller pond,” and more clearly stand out.Profitability – When properly managed, sub-prime and thin-file consumer loan portfolios are very profitable, with high average net loan yields. How many of us would snub our nose at average portfolio yields of seven to 10 percent?Loyalty – The most loyal consumers are those who you have truly helped in a meaningful way, and this goes way beyond a loan rate and extending “personal, friendly service.” Loyalty comes from people you have helped when others would not. It comes when they remember that first or second chance that helped them really move forward in life. People who improved credit and made better decisions will not easily forget you. Just ask your credit union peers who actively serve these markets; they will tell you the referral business alone drives tremendous loan and profitability growth.Community focus – Consumers who receive affordable access to credit build personal assets that lead to stronger communities. Today’s younger and diverse consumers place a very high priority on community development. Wise credit union leaders will leverage a commitment to serving the underserved and overlooked consumer by seeking out like-minded, non-financial community leaders to increase impact.If your credit union is not reaching the level of loan growth, profitability, diversification, member loyalty, or community development results you desire, I encourage you to take a closer look at your underserved and overlooked communities and consider leveraging the tools that are now available to better reach out to, analyze, and serve more consumers. Scott is the Principal of Your Credit Union Partner, PLLC.Your Credit Union Partner (YCUP) is a trusted advisor to the leaders of more than 100 credit unions located throughout … Web: www.yourcupartner.org Detailslast_img read more

NCUA & FinCEN issue additional guidance on hemp banking

first_imgAs the hemp baking industry continues to grow and stabilize, credit unions need to be kept up-to-date on how to adequately serve legal hemp-related businesses. The National Credit Union Association (NCUA) recently issued a Letter to Credit Unions providing additional guidance supplemental to a 2019 Regulatory Alert. Spurred by the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on hemp-related businesses, the NCUA issued its letter for advisory purposes, providing no new expectations or requirements for credit unions.When the Agricultural Act of 2018 (the 2018 Farm Bill) removed hemp from Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) was directed to establish a national regulatory framework for nationwide hemp production. This was done through an interim final rule establishing the U.S. Domestic Hemp Production Program. This rule will expire on December 31, 2021 if not replaced by a final rule.The NCUA reminds credit unions that it is important to “stay current with the federal, state and Native American tribal laws and regulations that apply to any hemp-related businesses they serve.” The hemp-industry follows a patch work of state and local regulatory requirements. With the ever-growing landscape of the hemp industry and new COVID-19 considerations, it is crucial for the agency to continually provide guidance. The recent letter provides key clarifications under the 2018 Farm Bill and addresses frequently asked questions.Some important guidance pulled from the NCUA’s letter includes the following: This is placeholder text continue reading » This post is currently collecting data…center_img ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says Eric Bailly started ‘sloppy’ in return to Manchester United team

first_imgAdvertisement Comment Lindelof felt he and Bailly controlled Vardy and Leicester well (Picture: Getty)‘That’s the foundation, with a proper solid defensive performance, and the keeper of course. Two fantastic saves today as well so he’s kept us in it.’Lindelof was also happy with his partnership with Bailly, telling MUTV: ‘I think we controlled it very well. Me and Eric spoke before the game and said we had to be ready.‘If we don’t have pressure on the ball we have to kill the space and [Vardy] didn’t have a lot of chances today and he didn’t get in behind so I’m very pleased with the way me and Eric controlled it.’More: Manchester United FCRio Ferdinand urges Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to drop Manchester United starNew Manchester United signing Facundo Pellistri responds to Edinson Cavani praiseEx-Man Utd coach blasts Ed Woodward for two key transfer errors Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says Eric Bailly started ‘sloppy’ in return to Manchester United team Metro Sport ReporterSunday 3 Feb 2019 5:19 pmShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link1.9kSharescenter_img United had failed to keep clean sheets against Burnley, Brighton and Arsenal (Picture: Getty)‘Fantastic to have a clean sheet and they played well against Arsenal together too,’ said Solskjaer when asked about Bailly and Lindelof’s partnership.AdvertisementAdvertisementADVERTISEMENT‘Today I thought we started a little bit sloppy, Eric knows, but they really came good.’More: FootballRio Ferdinand urges Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to drop Manchester United starChelsea defender Fikayo Tomori reveals why he made U-turn over transfer deadline day moveMikel Arteta rates Thomas Partey’s chances of making his Arsenal debut vs Man CityOn the clean sheet, he continued: ‘It’s the first one in a while. We’ve had three games now, Burnley, Brighton, Arsenal, where we’ve conceded after a couple of clean sheets.‘But that of course is very important for us, because when you’ve got players like Rashford, Pogba, Martial, Sanchez, all them quick ones up top, you’ve got a great chance of winning the game. The Ivorian came back into the starting XI to partner Victor Lindelof (Picture: Getty)Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has praised Manchester United’s defence for keeping a clean sheet though says he has already spoken to Eric Bailly about sloppiness at the start of the match.A solitary goal from Marcus Rashford after just nine minutes secured a 1-0 victory against Leicester City on Sunday afternoon, keeping their first clean sheet in four games.Bailly came back into the starting XI, partnering Victor Lindelof, and Solskjaer was happy with how they performed despite not starting particularly well. Advertisementlast_img read more

WPB Commissioner defends daughter accused of going out with COVID

first_imgPalm Beach County Commissioner Melissa McKinlay is defending herself and her teenage daughter after screenshots of her daughter going out in Orlando after being hospitalized with COVID-19 were made public.During a briefing, McKinlay shared that her 19-year-old daughter who is in college, contracted COVID and was very ill.After sharing the story, screenshots of her daughter being out in public instead of quarantining were made public.McKinlay took to Facebook about the incident saying that it’s not right for community members to stalk their social media pages and go after her children:“The only thing I have to say to those people is shame on you. In politics, I can talk about my experience about my child as they relate to the conversation, but the public has never gone after politicians’ children and I’m disgusted that they did this. ”McKinlay also went on to say that the photos her daughter posted where not current:” They assume wrongly that my daughter was out in Orlando while having COVID.”When asked whether or not she regretted sharing strong language on her Facebook page, McKinlay said absolutely not:” People are going to call me out for using a curse word, anyone who is watching and is a mom understands the mama bear mentality and anyone goes after your cubs, you fight back,” McKinlay said. ” Today, I stood up for my daughter and I’d do it again and no, I don’t have any regrets.”CBS12 News spoke with the person who shared the screenshot to find out why they did so. CBS was told that the source did it because the commissioner  is making decisions that impact the entire community and she needs to be held accountable for not following her own guidelines.The source also pointed out that the commissioner is in contact with her daughter and asked if the commissioner also quarantined during the time her daughter was ill.last_img read more

Barcelona, Madrid Take Title Fight to the Wire

first_imgLike in 2013/14 season when the La Liga was decided on the last day, this year’s season has also gone to the wire as the two Spanish giants- Barcelona and Real Madrid, quest for the title would be decided todayBarcelona closed in on the La Liga title by thrashing local rivals Espanyol 5-0 last Sunday as Atletico Madrid dropped out of the race after losing 2-1 at Levante and Real Madrid beat Valencia 3-2. Barcelona routed city rival Espanyol 5-0 on Sunday to increase their lead in the Spanish league going into next weekend’s final round of matches, when another victory will secure the Catalan club their second consecutive title.In the final round, Barcelona will play at Granada, who were fighting against relegation but on Sunday mathematically secured their place in the top flight with a 4-1 win at Sevilla, while Real Madrid will play at Deportivo La Coruna, who are in the middle of the table and also won’t have anything to play for in the last round.Barcelona have the advantage on the head-to-head tiebreaker against Real Madrid, so Madrid will need to win their game in La Coruna and hope Barcelona at least draw in Granada. Barcelona will be trying to win their sixth league title in eight seasons, while Madrid will be looking to lift the trophy for the first time since 2012, and second time in eight seasons.Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid were coming off difficult games in the semifinals of the Champions League, when both advanced to the May 28 final in Milan. Barcelona will play in the Copa del Rey final against Sevilla on May 22. The Catalan club relinquished a nine-point lead after going winless in four straight games, but Luis Enrique’s team picked up the pace just in time, winning four consecutive games by outscoring opponents 21-0 to stay ahead going into the decisive round.Meanwhile, Granada’s Ivan Kelava has refuted claims that the club’s players have considered accepting incentives from Real Madrid to defeat Barcelona. Madrid must return from their trip to Deportivo La Coruna with maximum points and hope that Granada, who ensured top-flight survival last weekend, take points off the leaders.The practice of offering bonuses, known as maletines (briefcases), is prohibited in Spanish football, which nonetheless has a history of incentivising at the end of the season.Kelava was accused of telling Goal that Real Madrid  would be able to offer a ‘bonus’ to his side despite them having nothing to play for and that the practice was ‘normal’ in Spain.The 28-year-old Croatian international goalkeeper, however, adamantly denied such claims on Twitter a few hours after the quotes began to circulate.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegramlast_img read more

Women of Troy look to continue hot start

first_imgThe USC women’s soccer team hopes to build on its season-opening winning streak as the Women of Troy take on Cal State Northridge in their first home game of the season at 3 p.m. on Friday.No. 22 USC (2-0) opened its season at the USD Tournament last weekend in San Diego, beating No. 11 San Diego State 4-1 before defeating the host Toreros 4-2.Senior forward Elizabeth Eddy, who became the first USC player since 2010 to be named Pac-12 Player of the Week, led the offensive surge with three goals in the two matches. Sophomore midfielder Jamie Fink and freshman forward Tanya Samarzich each added a pair of goals for USC, while freshman forward Kayla Mills had a pair of assists.“We did score a lot of goals last weekend, but I think we’re capable of more,” USC head coach Ali  Khosroshahin said. “We just need to be smarter in our decision-making. I haven’t had a team that worked this hard and cares this much in a long time. It’s an absolute treat to be out here with them every day.”Junior goalkeeper Caroline Stanley has converted 5 of 6 save opportunities in two games and the Women of Troy’s backline has performed admirably in limiting opponents’ chances so far.“I think the biggest difference that was displayed this past weekend was the atmosphere,” redshirt junior defender Mia Bruno said. “The environment of this team is so much more positive, and we finally get along as a team. We enjoy each other’s company and I think that translates on the field.”The Women of Troy have outshot their opponents 34-16 (16-9 on goal) in their first two games, including 16-6 in the first half.USC hopes to add to the struggles of the Matadors (0-2), who have been outscored 5-0 this season in losses to No. 5 UCLA and Arizona State. They have been outshot 26-11 (8-6 on goal), with four players tied for the team lead with 2 shots each.Last year, Northridge finished with an overall record of 11-5-6 and Big West record of 6-1-2 to secure a spot in the NCAA tournament, where they fell to San Diego State in the first round 3-0.The Matadors’ roster looks drastically different from last season after graduating top scorers Melissa Fernandez (8 goals, 5 assists) and Stephanie Galarze (4 goals, 1 assist). They’re also breaking in two freshman goalies, Rebecca Harper and Jovani McCaskill — with Harper starting both of the first two games.Junior forward Brittanie Sakajian (1 goal, 5 assists) boasts the highest point total of all returning players, and scored her only goal last season against the Women of Troy in the teams’ 1-1 draw.The Women of Troy are 3-0-1 all time against Northridge.“This is the first time since 2008 that we’ve had more healthy returners than new players,”  Khosroshahin said. “It’s really nice that we have the returners helping you teach the game plan, and we haven’t been able to do that for a few years.”Follow us on Twitter @dailytrojanlast_img read more

Men’s basketball: Krabbenhoft calls returning to Wisconsin a ‘no-brainer’

first_imgAs Wisconsin men’s basketball assistant coach Joe Krabbenhoft and his wife were driving up to Madison Tuesday afternoon, a sense of nostalgia ran through the both of them.Krabbenhoft was returning as a coach for the first time since 2012, when he was hired as a video coordinator for a season before heading to South Dakota State to be an assistant coach, and the newest UW assistant said coaching here was the easiest decision he’s ever made since he committed to play at Wisconsin in 2004.Men’s basketball: Gard hires Krabbenhoft as assistant coachFor the second time since he took over as interim head coach of the University of Wisconsin men’s basketball team, Read…“It’s a place where I have a lot of pride in and so many people that helped me along the way,” Krabbenhoft said. “It was a no-brainer for me.”Head coach Greg Gard shared a similar feeling. He noticed Krabbenhoft coaches the same way that he played back in his time as a student-athlete.Ultimately, that kind of personality embodies the both the type of player and coach a program like Wisconsin’s is looking for, Gard said.“I think that’ll be a huge advantage for him, and really help our players,” Gard said. “I think having somebody that’s been there and walked in those shoes, and our players are already gravitating to him and really liking him.”It didn’t take long for Krabbenhoft to decide he wanted to go into a career of coaching, as after playing professionally for five teams overseas in just three years, Krabbenhoft came back to Wisconsin as a video coordinator.Krabbensoft said when Gard and former head coach Bo Ryan started recruiting him was when he really considered coaching as a potential career move. The whole coaching and recruiting process was something he continually wanted to be a part of.“I think during the process when coach Gard was recruiting me, I think that I just enjoyed the process,” Krabbenhoft said. “I learned from him on day one of what it takes to be successful.”But while he is returning as a coach, Gard did say Krabbenhoft’s youth may lead to the 29-year-old helping out in practice now and then. And this would be nothing new for Krabbenhoft who said in his last season at South Dakota State, he worked with the team in practice for a three-month stretch as they consistently battled injuries all year.Above all, he is back as a coach, and Gard values what he brings to the table as a coach, and the biggest thing for Gard is Krabbenhoft’s experience as someone who has been through the program. Between he and assistant coach Howard Moore as two former players on the current coaching staff, Gard feels as though his staff now has an advantage.But while it is an exciting time for Krabbenhoft and the entire program, there is little time to celebrate.“It was a big moment for my family, and we are just extremely excited, but in this coaching business, I’ve learned quick that you can’t take a lot of time to just sit back and enjoy these things,” Krabbenhoft said. “You got to get to work.”last_img read more