Happy campers

Some of the campers at Nighthawk Ranch get familiar with one of the ranch’s cows. Nighthawk offers free camping sessions to children who are dealing with cancer in their lives. (Photo courtesy of Tom Evans)

The Nighthawk Ranch fundraising barn dance is scheduled for June 1 at 5 p.m. There will be a silent auction, barbecue dinner, and dancing with music by Guffey’s own singer/song writer Lissa Hanner.

Nighthawk Ranch is located a couple of miles north of Guffey on Park County Road 102, and it is a special place. It is a summer camp for kids, 10 to 17 years old, “who have been dealing with cancer to experience a week of joy,” said Tom Evans, ranch co-owner, in an email.

While the 320-plus acres and all the buildings are paid for, the summer camp sessions are solely dependent upon donations to operate. The kids pay nothing for the camp, which includes all transportation costs, food, housing and activities at the camp. That is why the fundraising barn dance, silent auction and barbecue are so important.

Activities abound at the camp and revolve around the natural mountain environment. Activities include the equine therapy program, where each camper gets their own horse for the session to care for, feed and learn to ride. There are other ranch animals for the campers to take care of, as well as swimming, archery, art, music, star gazing, camping overnights, a wildlife viewing pond, ropes course and a game room to keep them busy.

Tom and Dorothy Evans started purchasing property for their camp in 1997, and in 2012 the couple started their first camp sessions. The Evans “encourage achievement and renewal through good nutrition, exposure to animals and wildlife, good camaraderie and the spiritual uplift that nature provides.” It is a place for kids to be kids.

So, put June 1 on your calendar and come on down to the barn dance at Nighthawk Ranch and kick up your heels, or just enjoy a good time.

The silent auction and delicious barbecue dinner prepared by Guffey’s own Gary Hanner will start at 5 p.m., for a cost of $15 per plate, although you can come a little earlier to peruse the auction items.

Entertainment by Lissa Hanner also starts at 5 p.m., and the silent auction will close at 7 p.m. with the winners announced. Admission to the event is free. All proceeds go to Nighthawk Ranch and its wonderful summer program for kids.

Anyone with items they would like to donate to the silent auction, should contact the Evans. The Guffey Community Charter School will again be the drop location for auction donations.

For more information about Nighthawk Ranch, contact info@nighthawkranchcolorado.org or visit the website at www.nighthawkranchcolorado.org.

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