The American Alpine Club Annual Benefit Dinner weekend will be in Denver on Friday and Saturday, March 13-14. Tickets are now available on the AAC website.
The dinner will be hosted at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts on March 14 and promises to be particularly special because it will be Phil Powers’ last one as club CEO; he plans to retire by summer 2020. Kris McDivitt Tompkins, former CEO of Patagonia and current president of Tompkins Conservation, will deliver the keynote address.
The event is an important fundraiser for the club, which, according to a press release, “advocates for American climbers domestically and around the world; provides grants and volunteer opportunities to protect and conserve the places we climb; hosts local and national climbing festivals and events; publishes two of the world’s most sought-after climbing annuals, the American Alpine Journal and Accidents in North American Mountaineering; cares for the world’s leading climbing library and country’s leading mountaineering museum; manages five campgrounds as part of a larger lodging network for climbers; and annually gives $80,000+ toward climbing, conservation and research grants that fund adventurers who travel the world.”
The conservation theme will have particular resonance this year with McDivitt Tompkins as the keynote speaker.
The press release reads: “She and her late husband Doug Tompkins turned millions of acres across Chile and Argentina into National Parks in an effort to restore and re-wild landscapes. Most recently, Kris completed the largest private land donation in history, with over one million acres going towards creating or expanding 10 national parks in Chile. To date, Tompkins Conservation has helped conserve more than 14.2 million acres.”
In addition to the perennial events that lead up to the dinner, the club aims to “unite climbers for the planet” by hosting a series of “sessions” from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. on March 14 at the Hilton Denver City Center. Topics range from public land issues to climate change and will include a special athlete presentation.
Of course, as usual, the fun gets started the day before the dinner on March 13. A “Send ‘n’ Social” at Movement RiNo features a climbing competition and socializing from 6 to 9 p.m. Admission is free with all dinner tickets and for AAC and Movement members.
Then, on Saturday, following the sessions at the Hilton, a cocktail reception and silent auction runs from 6 to 7 p.m. The dinner begins at 7 p.m. and is followed by the awards, a live auction and keynote speech.
To buy tickets or get more information, click here to go to the AAC website.