It’s Duck Race Time Again!

It’s that time of year again: Adopt a duck, send a graduate to college!

Read on for all the details:

The 2016 Duck Race & Festival benefiting the Eagle Rock School’s Graduate Higher Education Fund is scheduled for Saturday, May 7, in Estes Park, and is the perfect platform for parents, supporters and other members of the Eagle Rock community to raise funds for one of our most important projects on campus.

This — the 28th annual duck race — continues a tradition started in 1989 that has, so far, returned more than $2 million to local charities and groups.

How much money, you ask? A whopping $19 out of every $20 (or $21 if purchased online) spent to adopt a rubber ducky for the race goes directly to the Eagle Rock Graduate Higher Education Fund.

2016 Estes Park Duck Race Logo

If you do the math, that’s 95 percent of the proceeds from each duck adoption. Of course it helps that Rotary Club volunteers — like Eagle Rock’s own head of school, Jeff Liddle — run the Duck Race, thus keeping fundraising overheard low. That means that if you specify Eagle Rock School as the recipient, we get the $19 donation, which goes directly into our Graduate Fund, which supports past and future Eagle Rock graduates in their pursuit of higher education.

This program is unique to Eagle Rock, with each and every graduate eligible for up to Continue reading…

Eagle Rock Theatre Students Dare to Present ‘Spring Awakening’

Spring-AwakeningFar be it for Eagle Rock School’s Music and Performance Department to turn and walk away from the edgier side of musical theater. In fact, if you take a look at past performances, the department has produced and presented such controversial programs as Urinetown and Rent.

So it’s no surprise at all that Meghan Tokunaga-Scanlon — our Music & Performance Instructional Specialist — has chosen to push the boundaries even further this year, offering up a presentation of Spring Awakening.

The production will be staged at the Rialto Theatre in Loveland (Colo.) beginning at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, April 1, with two more showings in the days that follow — Thursday, April 2 at 7 p.m., and Friday, April 3, also at 7 p.m. The cost of admission is at the discretion of the audience member, but keep in mind that proceeds benefit the Eagle Rock Graduate Fund — a cause that’s near and dear to all Eagle Rock students. The theater is located at 228 East 4th Street in Loveland.

And while this performance is definitely not suitable for children, there won’t be any body exposure and the overt sexuality is somewhat toned down. However, the show still contains plenty of adult content.

Here at Eagle Rock, we’re fortunate to have such a supportive administration. Spring Awakening tackles some really weighty issues that are very relatable to a lot of our students.

springawakening4

With book and lyrics by Steven Sater and music by Duncan Sheik, Spring Awakening is by turns irreverent, poignant, boisterous and thoughtful. The authors made the unlikely decision to Continue reading…

It’s Never Too Early To Get Your Rubber Ducks In A Row

2015EstesParkDuckRaceButtonWhen was the last time you actually heard anyone say they just hate a well-organized duck race? Never, that’s when. And if you add a good cause to this equation, you’re pretty much guaranteed to have a successful event.

Here at Eagle Rock, we’re among the go-to experts when it comes to conducting rubber ducky derbies, and with 26 years of such faux fowl festivities on its fund-raising resume, the Rotary Club of Estes Park handles this event with great authority.

As is always the case, some of the proceeds from this — the 27th annual Estes Park Duck Race — benefit Eagle Rock’s Graduate Higher Education Fund, among other local charities. Fact is, since that first duck race back in 1989, more than $2 million has been raised for local charities and organizations.

This year’s race gets underway at or around 1 p.m. on Saturday, May 2, and we hesitate to give an exact time because everyone knows how difficult it is to herd rubber ducks. The actual competition begins at Nikki’s Steakhouse On The River on the west side of downtown Estes Park (exact location: 1350 Fall River Road), and travels down the Fall River to the downtown area behind Inkwell & Brew.

That’s where visitors and participates can watch as thousands of rubber ducks float across the finish line on the Big Thompson River. When you hear people talk about the perfect photo opportunity, this is what they’re talking about.

One of the highlights of this event is the opportunity for participants to Continue reading…

Showing Support For What We’ve Helped To Create

While we happily accept donations for the Graduate Higher Education Fund at any time, there are several times during the year when Eagle Rock staff and students really go all out and “work” for it.

Take, for example, the start of the summer and fall trimesters when we set time aside for Graduate Work Day. During the first week of these trimesters, our students and staff members devote a day to serving the Estes Park community through yard work and other chores.

photo 1These folks charge an hourly rate — but instead of pocketing the money, they turn the proceeds over to administrators of the Graduate Fund. This year our community earned $1,500 sprucing up areas of the town on May 15. Charging a flat $12 per hour per worker, 10 staff members and about 40 students divided themselves among 16 projects around town. One group headed off to the historic Stanley Hotel to weed and perform other gardening tasks on the resort hotel’s expansive 55-acre grounds. Other groups headed to private homes to rake leaves, clean windows, stack firewood, shovel snow and complete other chores.

The funding program had its origins in 1997 when Eagle Rock staff realized that they had a lot of grads that wanted to go to college and had the grades to get into college, but lacked the money to do so.

The Graduate Higher Education Fund award was gradually increased over the years and now stands at Continue reading…

Acquiring an Appreciation of Eagle Rock’s Graduate Higher Education Fund

Graduate-Higher-Education-Fund-Eagle-Rock-SchoolIn Eagle Rock’s early years, students would graduate in proper circumstance — if not pomp — only to face seemingly impossible financial barriers in their efforts to move on. Having earned their diplomas and eagerly looking forward to grander goals, these confident students often found their promising futures thwarted by monetary constraints that prevented them from financing further education.

What it came down to was students who wanted to go to college — and they could get into college — but they just didn’t have the support, according to Robert Burkhardt, our founder and former Head of School.

By the summer of 1997, Burkhardt and Dick Herb, who was then our director of operations, came up with the beginnings of a plan. Herb found some money in the budget that enabled Burkhardt  to bequeath a thousand dollars to one graduate.

But it quickly became obvious that all of our graduates deserved a financial opportunity, so the next trimester, we granted the same award to all graduates. Nice sentiment, but in order to make the fund sustainable, we had to come up with a fund-raising operation.

We began to hire the school out for Eagle Serve once a trimester, and then became involved with the Estes Park Duck Race organization. And volunteers began sending out letters to people, asking for monetary support.

When Judy Gilbert, Eagle Rock’s first director of curriculum passed away, the American Honda Education Corporation donated Continue reading…