Tag Archives: Magic Sky Ranch

Girl Scout overnight camp property north of Fort Collins

Magic Sky Ranch reopens for reservations

In 2014, Magic Sky Ranch was put up for sale, after months of research into the best way to provide outdoor programs to Girl Scouts in Colorado. This was a hard decision, and we understand Magic Sky holds a place in the hearts of many of our girls, leaders, and alumnae. We made the decision to focus resources on other properties across the state, and our overnight camp programs at Sky High Ranch and Tomahawk Ranch. For more information on this decision, visit http://gscoblog.org/2014/09/girl-scouts-of-colorado-to-sell-magic-sky-ranch-and-dedicate-resources-to-outdoor-programs/.

While Magic Sky Ranch has been listed for sale, we have continued to take reservations for troops and service units, as well as some non-Girl Scout groups. During the summer of 2017 we temporarily removed Magic Sky Ranch from our booking website, while our council evaluated the status of the sale of the property.

We have now returned Magic Sky Ranch to our booking website, but due to the nature of the real estate process, we are only able to take reservations six months in advance.

If your troop or service unit makes a reservation at Magic Sky Ranch within six months, and the property is sold before the date of your reservation, Girl Scouts of Colorado will work with your troop to reschedule your reservation at another property or at another date, depending on availability at our other properties. You can make your booking at http://girlscoutsofcolorado.checkfront.com/reserve/.

Thank you for your support of Outdoor Programs with Girl Scouts of Colorado.

New dates available in August and September for property reservations

Are you looking for a place to camp with your troop in August or September of 2017? You’re in luck! Several of our properties are available and we want to get your troop outdoors.

Sky High Ranch:
August 11 – 13
August 25 – 27
September 1 – 3

Magic Sky Ranch:
August 11 – 13
August 25 – 27

Meadow Mountain Ranch:
August 11 – 13
September 1 – 3
September 15 – 17
September 22 – 24

For prices, accommodations, and to make your reservation, use GSCO’s online booking system at http://girlscoutsofcolorado.checkfront.com/reserve/.

All sites are first come, first-served, and must be reserved with a 20% deposit. Balances are due in full 30 days before the reservation date. Bookings made less than 30 days before the reservation must be paid in full when making the reservation.

If you have questions about our properties or the property reservation process, please email the Property and Outdoor Program Administrator at property.reservations@gscolorado.org.

Volunteer Spotlight: Heather Gardner 

Heather Gardner portrait 2017 Denver, CO

In honor of Volunteer Appreciation Month, Girl Scouts of Colorado is celebrating extraordinary volunteers throughout the state. Heather Gardner, leader of Troop 675 in the Mountaineers Service Unit,  was nominated as a shining example of the wonderful role Girl Scout volunteers play in the lives of girls and our community!

For the last three years, Heather has led her high school troop to plan a girl empowerment event, Perfectly Imperfect, Perfectly You!, with a great guest speaker. Last year, it was 9News Traffic Reporter and pilot Amelia Earhart. This year, it will be celebrity mountain climber Meghan Martin. Heather is described as “articulate and passionate about giving 5th-8th grade girls the tools for self esteem, confidence building, and more as they either enter or are in the middle school years.”  

We asked Heather to answer a few questions about her experiences as a Girl Scout volunteer. We hope you find her story as inspiring as we did!

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How long have you been a Girl Scout?

This is my 10th year being a Girl Scout leader/volunteer.

Why did you become a Girl Scout volunteer?

I became a Girl Scout volunteer to allow my daughter the opportunity to be in Girl Scouts. When I was 6-years-old, I tried to join Girl Scouts, but there were no troops or volunteers in my area. When my daughter was in first grade, we went to an orientation meeting and they did not have any available troops or volunteers for our area. I did not want her to miss out on Girl Scouts as I did, so I started a troop. 

Tell us about your different volunteer roles as a Girl Scout.

Girl Scouts allows so many different volunteer roles and growth as a leader. Just a few of the roles I have had the privilege to fill are leader, cookie manager, troop secretary, finance advisor, volunteer coordinator, community outreach, overnight troop camping, CPR/First aid training, event planner, website designer, a second mom, friend, etc. There are so many ways to contribute as an individual, your strengths can always be utilized. 

What have you learned as a Girl Scout volunteer? What do you hope girls have learned from you?

The sky’s the limit! Don’t be afraid to think big, and never be afraid to ask. I truly try to set the example that everything is possible. When I first started to suggest ideas to the troop for events and/or guest speakers, I think my girls thought I was crazy. They never thought we could get so much support from our community, celebrity role models, other troops, etc. I believe I have inspired the girls to think big and that anything is possible.  

What is your favorite Girl Scout memory?

There are so many Girl Scout memories to choose from! Three of my favorite and most memorable moments were: 1.) Our troop was planning for our next girl empowerment event, and I had just flown in from a week-long business trip the day prior and was super tired. We were brainstorming for our event’s activities and completely got off topic. Some of the silliest things were said and laughed about that night. I truly believe you have to have those moments with your girls! If you ask any of them about it, they will know exactly what I’m talking about. 2.) One of the proudest moments of being a volunteer, was at our very first troop hosted the girl empowerment event. I remember that one of the younger attendees was having some anxiety issues, and one of my older girls took her under her wing and spent time just talking to her. I can’t tell you how proud I was of that moment, and how I felt that everything I did as a volunteer completely paid off then. 3.) Our troop went to Magic Sky Ranch for our annual family camping trip. This was the first time we had been to MSR, and we were in awe when we watched a lightning storm from our cabin window. We all sat there for about an hour in complete darkness, just enjoying the spectacle and each other’s company. 

What words of advice do you have for other volunteers?

Ask for help! I am somewhat controlling, and have really had a tough time listening to my own advice. Over the last couple of years, I have asked for more help than ever – from my co-leader, parents, community, and girls. Surprisingly, people really do want to help, you just have to be specific with what you need. It can be as simple as asking to host a troop sleepover, picking up cookies and running cookie booths, helping with sewing on patches, sending out meeting reminders, going to monthly leader meetings, coming up with volunteer ideas, etc. If you try to do everything yourself, it no longer feels like a troop and you will tire fast. Ask for help and everyone feels involved and has a happier troop.

Want to nominate a volunteer for Girl Scouts of Colorado to spotlight? Please email Public Relations Director AnneMarie Harper at annemarie.harper@gscolorado.org.

Power of cookie: New adventures

In October of 2015, Troop 73904  used money they earned from selling Girl Scout Cookies to go on an overnight adventure at the Denver Aquarium. They got to learn about the rainforest, feed the fish, and sleep under the sharks.  It was a very cool experience as well as an educational one! 

The troop plans to use money earned from the 2016 sale to stay overnight at Magic Sky Ranch and go tubing and ice skating. 

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments too.

NEW: Lower Prices at Magic Sky Ranch in 2017!

We are pleased to announce that property reservations at our locations have increased year over year! You may find that the property you are interested in for your Troop / Service Unit event is be already booked (as a reminder, properties can be booked 12 months in advance).  In order to increase property accessibility, we are excited to announce for the 2017 Membership Year, that we are lowering the price for Magic Sky Ranch, as well as offering a discount to any troop or service unit who would like to reserve the full property for their event!

  • The price to reserve an All Season Cabin is lowering to $100 a night each. The current price for reserving an All Season Cabin is $150 a night each.
    • This change will be implemented on the booking website on September 1st.
    • Any reservations made for the All Season Cabins for the 2017 Membership Year will qualify for the new, lower price.
  • For any group who reserves the full property, they will receive a 25% Full Property Discount.
    • In order to qualify for this discount, you must reserve all of the buildings on site, including all six All Season Cabins, the Old Lodge, the two tent sites, the four seasonal units, and the activity center.
    • To utilize this new discounted price, start your booking at here for next year. Once you have reserved the full property, the Outdoor Property and Program Administrator will apply your discount, and you will receive a new invoice with the discounted total.

Girl Scouts of Colorado is in the process of selling Magic Sky Ranch. Read more information about the property sale.

At this time, we feel comfortable that groups will be able to keep reservations through next spring and into next summer, without concern of the Magic Sky sale. All troop and groups will be given between six and nine months’ notice if the property is sold before your reservation date.  If the property is sold before your event, we will work to try and find another property or another date that will work best for your group.  If we are unable to find another reservation that will work for you, your reservation may be cancelled.  In this event, we will provide a full refund.

Any questions, concerns or comments are welcome! Please email property.reservations@gscolorado.org in order to receive more information!

Troop 70700 got moving!

Submitted by Jen Rotar

Berthoud

Northern and Northeastern Colorado

Troop 70700 is newly formed group of 5th grade Juniors from Berthoud. These girls, who named their troop the “Tigers” are fiercely excited about Girl Scouts and have just completed their first Journey!

The girls chose Get Moving and started out with making their Energy Pledges to conserve energy at home. Then they attended the Get Moving Mystery Weekend at Magic Sky Ranch in October and completed several more steps of the journey while also earning their Detective badges.

Back home, the quickly decided on their Take Action Project- making re-usable t-shirt tote bags and donating them to the Berthoud House of Neighborly Service. The HSN provides groceries and help with other crucial services for those in need. The 30 tote bags sewn by the Tigers will give those HSN clients a convenient and eco-friendly, shopping bag to carry home their groceries.

The final step in the Journey was to present those bags to the HSN, take a tour of the Berthoud food bank, and gain a greater understanding of how this organization helps people in need with food, shelter and utilities.

The Troop 700 Tigers are ready for their next adventure!

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments too.

New troop camping at Magic Sky and more!

MSR cabins

Girl Scouts of Colorado has more places to stay than ever with extended seasons to give your troop lots of reasons to camp at a Girl Scout property. We’re also making it easier to book your trip!

New Reservation System!

Check out the easy, new properties reservation system! We’ve also got a guide to the new property training info.

  • No passwords required
  • You can make reservations up to one year in advance- properties are getting lots of use, so be sure to plan early and book in advance

Book your troop or service unit at Magic Sky Ranch!

With no resident camp at Magic Sky Ranch this summer, the beautiful cabins and other facilities are open for troop camp and other groups. Yes, the property is up for sale, but this could take years, and until it sells, it’s yours to use! You can do your own thing for programming and food; using the kitchen in the lodge or the dining hall. We will have at least three month’s notice when the property sells, so renters should have time to book another location for their needs. If a reservation is booked past the closing date, we will either refund fees paid or move the reservation to another property, if available.

Extended Summer Season for Property Rental!

We have increased our summer season at many properties! Groups can now rent through September 30 rather than September 15 at:

  • Meadow Mountain Ranch
  • Magic Sky Ranch (newer developed part of the property)
  • Lazy Acres
  • Sky High Ranch

The extended summer season is weather dependent. Individual areas of properties may be subject to closure due to early freezing temperatures at the discretion of the property manager.

Year-Round Options at Property Lodges (think Winter Camp!)

Camping is not just for summer! Think of all the awesome outdoor experiences we have for girls in Colorado. We have lodges open year-round now at Meadow Mountain Ranch (near Allenspark) and Sky High Ranch (near Woodland Park). In addition at Sky High, two units with heat are also available year-round and the Homestead House is available for limited dates. Visit our property page to learn more and book now!

 

Girl Scouts of Colorado to sell Magic Sky Ranch and dedicate resources to outdoor programs

To focus its efforts on delivering a high quality outdoor leadership experience for all girls, Girl Scouts of Colorado’s Board of Directors has decided to put Magic Sky Ranch up for sale. The board is optimistic about the opportunities this will create to strengthen the programming throughout the state and at our other outdoor properties. As responsible financial stewards, the board decided to sell the property which generates the highest annual financial loss (Magic Sky Ranch) and reallocate the resources to mission-focused programming that includes and goes beyond camp and the outdoors.

One year ago, the board chartered an Outdoor Property Evaluation Task Force to gather and present a thorough evaluation of each Girl Scout property. Considerations included historical and future financial analysis, feedback from the membership via a formal survey and 8 town hall meetings throughout the state.

Girl Scouts is changing to meet the changing needs of today’s girls. With every change there are challenges, but we believe these changes will create a stronger organization.

  • Property decisions are always difficult, and this has been a thoughtful and thorough analysis. We understand the emotional toll this may have on some members, and we will do everything we can to help address those needs. Nonetheless, at the heart of this decision is what’s best for meeting the needs of today and tomorrow’s girls.
  • Like most Girl Scout councils, we are fortunate in Colorado to own many beautiful outdoor properties. After careful analyses of the resources needed to run and maintain these properties, along with the recognition of how today’s girls choose to go camping, several councils have come to the conclusion that they no longer need, nor can support, the portfolio of camps that served them well in the past. While some councils have gone away from owning outdoor property, we are committed to keeping council-owned property as a part of our outdoor leadership program in Colorado.

The future

  • Girl Scouts of Colorado has no plans to sell other properties at this time. In keeping with our mission, we plan to continue underwriting our camp programs and evaluating the opportunity to invest in Sky High Ranch and Meadow Mountain Ranch to improve the camping experience for girls at these properties.
  • As previously announced, resident camp sessions in 2015 will be at Tomahawk Ranch and Sky High Ranch, with troop or group camping availability at all of our properties as well as many volunteer-led day camps and other summer leadership opportunities statewide.
  • Delivering outdoor programs at council-owned properties is a priority for Girl Scouts of Colorado. We are pleased to underwrite these programs through donor and fund raising contributions. The fees collected from campers represent roughly half the cost of running the programs and maintaining the properties.

Camping will always be a part of Girl Scouts

Girl Scouting provides unmatched camping experiences that will grow stronger by adapting and changing to meet the needs girls tell us they have today.

  • Girl Scouts of Colorado is fully committed to offering outdoor experiences that set girls from all communities on a path to leadership.
  • We believe strongly in the power of outdoor experiences to contribute to the healthy development of girls: physically, cognitively and emotionally.
  • The Girl Scout Research Institute reports that girls who regularly spend time outdoors eclipse their peers who spend less time outdoors in environmental stewardship, challenge-seeking and problem solving—all important traits in twenty-first century leadership.
  • Outdoor activities for Girl Scouts include playing, walking, hiking and cooking outdoors; field trips to outdoor places; camping; and environmental volunteering.
  • Girl Scouts of Colorado is dedicated to bringing quality outdoor programs to the girls of Colorado. We do this by making good use of our Girl Scout properties plus the millions of acres of public lands, millions of parks and trails in our communities and the very strong community of outdoor education volunteers in our membership.

“Frozen” Fun at Magic Sky Ranch Rendezvous

The snow* was flying and fun abounded as everyone was a happy snowman at the Frozen-themed Rendezvous at Magic Sky Ranch this weekend.

Troops from across the state enjoyed meals at Arendelle, activities at the North Mountain, and met new friends as a part of Oaken, Pabbie, Kristoff, Olaf, Sven, Elsa, and Anna groups.

Even the weather was in the spirit of Frozen as we had fog roll in Friday night to help us enjoy a chilly August night in the mountains.

During the day, girls were able to make their own fire crystals, snow globes, snow cones, ice castles, travel across Marshmallow’s ice berg challenges, journey to the lake, and even build their own snowman (out of their leaders!). *This is where all the extra “snow” (TP) came from that was then enjoyed to make snow fall and snow angels inside.

Saturday night campfire was an all-out sing along to favorite camp and frozen songs, and the weekend wrapped up with SWAPS and farewells.

You can see more pictures here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/gscolorado/sets/72157646823965315/

A special thank you to the staff who helped make the weekend possible: Ash, Houdini, Kodiak, Lady Bug, Piglet, Princess Pat, Socks, Usagi, as well as registration support – Stephanie and Maya.

And a big thank you to all the Troops who attended the event: 14275, 50516, 50546, 52254, 52319, 52696, 53972, 54071, 54185, 60447, 64143, 64626, 71363, 74404, 74447.

We look forward to seeing everyone at future Girl Scout events, and wish you a happy school year!

More magical possiblities next summer at Magic Sky

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You asked for more services for troop camping at Magic Sky Ranch next summer, and Girl Scouts of Colorado is delivering by deciding to keep the Activity Center and Dining Hall open and offering catering for troops and groups.

With the move of Girl Scouts of Colorado’s resident camp program next summer to Sky High Ranch and Tomahawk Ranch, we will have great availability for troops and other groups at Magic Sky over the summer. Bring your service unit, bring your family reunion, bring your church group — we’d love to host your camping adventures at Magic Sky!  Book now! Troops:  http://www.girlscoutsofcolorado.org/magic-sky-ranch
Other groups: http://www.girlscoutsofcolorado.org/getaways/magic-sky-ranch

In addition to Magic Sky, next summer our members will have the opportunity to troop camp at Meadow Mountain Ranch, where we’re pleased to announce that we’ve reopened the lodge and the Pinecrest Unit. Troops can book the lodge for day, overnight, and for cooking their meals.

Lazy Acres will remain open during the same season as our other ranch properties and will offer individual troop camp and volunteer-led outdoor program experiences for girls.

Summer resident camp and year-round programs will continue as they have at Tomahawk Ranch.

Additionally, we encourage individual troop and service unit camping and troop usage at our lodge properties: Twisted Pine, Pawnee Lodge, and Hamp Hut.

 This major change will increase options for troops at GSCO properties. We have extended the season for rental by two weeks at Lazy Acres, Meadow Mountain Ranch, and Magic Sky Ranch’s newer cabins. The season will be May 16 through September 30 — this adds two weeks of use to each property.

These are you your camp properties — come enjoy them!