One of my favorite things to do is help people with their projects.
Whether it’s a Fire Station, Health Clinic, or Historic District, ribbon
cutting is the most satisfying outcome I can imagine. While I’ve lived in
Escalante I’ve gotten grant monies for the Fire House, the original
clinic, the airport runway, and the Escalante Show house. All except the
show house were public projects. The show house is privately owned and
When the Steed’s purchased the abandoned show house in 2013 they
envisioned they would have it open “some day” but not July, 2015. The 1938
facility had been vacated and partly torn up inside as it sat with dirt
floors for almost ten years. Tracy and I had been providing them print
services since 2010 and gotten to be good friends. When Jenifer asked me
to help her with a Grant Proposal for Rural Economic Funds, there was no
way I could say no.
With $50,000 grant award in hand, their own personal funds and a
line-of-credit they went to work to get it open by July 4th, 2015.
Husband Shannon didn’t believe it could or would happen. Jenifer and I
pressed forward . They already have several special events booked for the
venue and will continue to develop their plan of work as they get into the
Between their Wild West Retreat, operating the Cowboy Blues Restaurant in
Escalante, serving triple the amount of bus tours and special events at
their outdoor facility, Wild West Retreat and Cowboy Cookouts will
continue to be a success. They have a plan and continue to work it. It’s
been an honor and privilege to work with them over the years. I’m looking
forward to that ribbon cutting.
Escalante Show House Close to Being Revnovated
Escalante Show House Before Renovation
The 11 years I spent working for a member of Congress gave me the opportunity to help people. Sometimes it was with a Federal Agency and sometimes a project. Mostly the agency problems were a failure to communicate. The constituent didn’t understand what the agency needed, wanted or was saying. The Agency failed to listen closely enough to understand the problem. Those were pretty simple fixes.
More problematic were the projects. Everyone has a dream and they would come to the Congressional office seeking help in getting Grant money to fund their dream. One of the first things I always talked with them about was to put their dream on paper. Including a description of the project, where, when, why, etc. Then put a budget to it so we know how much it’s going to cost. And then put together a marketing plan and figure out how they would sell it. I wouldn’t help them write it, but I would talk with them and try and brainstorm where they could get the information. It was a dream job, and we completed so many projects together over the years, it was extremely rewarding. As I dig through the information files I saved I’ll try and put together a list of those most significant.
But today, the tables were turned. It isn’t my dream, but I helped write a grant request based on the dreamers business plan, marketing plan, and investment potential. Now I’m like every other grantee hopeful, when will I find out? Are we there yet? I know how much time these decisions can take, but I hadn’t hardly submitted the package and thought about checking to see if there was an answer yet. Really?
Yes, it’s a lot of work to put your dream on paper, but it’s sooooo worth it. In the meantime, I’ve been asked if there are other grant possibilities for someone else’s dream that lives here in Escalante, Ut. My response? Put your dream on paper and then let’s see what we can do. In the meantime I’m looking for money for a Historic Preservation project and a book. It’s just too much fun to charge them anything, and it’s so much fun to see their face light up when their dream comes true.
So many people have made my dreams come true over the years. It’s nice to be able to “pass it on”.
Until next time