Hello Folks,

This coming Thursday is my favorite day of the entire year, every year. It is the time I most reflect on how lucky I am to have such a wonderful, loving family, and how lucky I am to live in this wonderful town of ours. As many you know, I grew up in Australia, where the Holidays fall in the middle of Summer. I have vivid memories of being a small child singing “White Christmas” with sweat dripping down my nose wondering what the fuss was all about. I was 32 years old before I experienced a snowy Holiday Season, and then it all made sense… The Holidays are meant to be White!

These past few years have been unlike any others in my lifetime, and it is easy to think of everything that's gone wrong. People have been forced to cancel plans, stay away from friends and family, and change daily routines. It's been a hard for everyone. But within this crisis, so many people, organizations, and businesses in our community have stepped up and supported each other in creative and selfless ways. They remind us how much we still have to be grateful for.

Wishing you and your Loved Ones a wonderful Thanksgiving and a special Holiday Season.
  Murray Gardner

Here are the standouts on our 2021 Gratitude List:  

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WE'RE GRATEFUL FOR: Our quality of life and the outstanding array of cultural offerings in Park City, Salt Lake, and along the Wasatch Back including national musical talent, Broadway performances, comedy shows, a plethora of outdoor concert venues, and of course, the Sundance Film Festival. And whether it be snowboarding, skiing, biking, hiking, rafting, kayaking, outdoor concerts, shopping, or dining in this beautiful mountain setting, we get to enjoy it all with our family and friends. 

WE'RE GRATEFUL FOR:  Incredible mountain views and abundant open space to enjoy amidst our 229 average days of sunshine per year. We're grateful to the 2021 Summit County voters who overwhelmingly passed a new $50 million open space bond this past November, the largest ever, passing by almost a 2 to 1 ratio. The funds have been earmarked to protect land on the East Side of the county from development and have targeted the Kamas Valley and Weber River corridor. We're thankful that the Wasatch County Open Space committee is continuing to invest their bond from the prior election in preserving open spaces.

WE'RE GRATEFUL FOR:  An amazing philanthropic community that supports our 125+ non-profits in a huge way. This November's Live PC Give PC fundraising event raised an astounding $4.5 million to support the wonderful non-profit organizations that do so much to enrich our lives. This total is almost double what was raised in 2019 and shows the gratitude our community expressed for the incredible work our non-profits have done, enriching our lives and supporting the community during this pandemic. 

WE'RE GRATEFUL FOR: Over 400 of miles of trails for hiking, biking, cross country skiing, and snowshoeing where moose, elk, and deer sightings are an everyday possibility. We are so thankful to the Mountain Trails Foundation for creating this vast network of trails and maintaining them in pristine condition. The community demonstrated their support during the Live PC Give PC fundraiser, when 1,081 donors contributed over $140,000 to the MTF coffers, topping the leaderboard. 

WE'RE GRATEFUL FOR: Our Park City and Wasatch County School District teachers who work tirelessly to shape our children's lives, both academically and socially. Our teachers inspire and motivate our children to become outstanding citizens of the community and world. They have possibly the most important job in our community, and we are incredibly thankful for their efforts!

WE'RE GRATEFUL FOR:  Our home-grown and imported athletes who benefit so much from the facilities built as part of the legacy of hosting the 2002 Winter Olympic Games. Authentic athleticism is everywhere in Park City. You're likely to bump into an Olympian just about anywhere in and around town. Outdoor attire here isn't so much a fashion statement as a practical necessity for our active lifestyles. These athletes inspire our local kids through organizations, such as the Youth Sports Alliance, to get involved at a very young age, developing skills and habits that will help shape their lives in a positive, healthy way. 

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We thank Community for Children’s Justice and the Peace House for their support of victims of domestic violence in our community. Both organizations have newly expanded home bases made possible by the enormous generosity of our community. 
We thank the National Ability Center, which empowers individuals and athletes of all abilities by building self-esteem, confidence, and lifetime skills through sport, recreation, and educational programs. They are widely considered one of the finest abilities programs in the nation. 
We thank the Mountain Trails Foundation for their constant improvement of our trails network and user education programs.
We thank the Park City Library, a resource for LIFE: books, DVDs, computers, video cameras, software, green screen, and sound booth. 

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We thank the ECCLES FAMILY FOUNDATION for their philanthropic support of our numerous cultural venues locally and throughout the state. Most recently, this foundation made another huge donation to our community, contributing $400,000 to fund the new state-of-the-art Spencer F. Eccles Broadcast Center for KPCW.org, our local beloved radio station. 

We thank KPCW and The Park Record for keeping us so well-informed on everything about Park City and the Wasatch Back. We are especially thankful for KPCW's Lost and Found segment; lost dogs, cell phones, and keys always seem to find their way home thanks to this broadcast. We extend enormous gratitude to Rick Brough, KPCW's veteran reporter who retired this November after 35 years of dedicated service.
Thanks to Rick, we learned about everything the planning commissions were grappling with from the comforts of home, instead of attending all those long, late night meetings. We are grateful to  Summit County for honoring him so appropriately by declaring November 12 "Rick Brough Day!" 

We thank the FIREFIGHTERS and all the FIRST RESPONDERS who responded so urgently to this past summer's Parley's Canyon fire, which threatened the Summit Park and Pinebrook neighborhoods in Summit County. The fire was started by a spark from a vehicle's catalytic converter and quickly overtook the hillside just west of Summit Park along I-80. 

We are grateful for Renai Miller, President and General Manager of KPCW.org. They generously rescheduled their annual fundraiser to provide almost 24 hour coverage of the fire's status. We are so thankful for the many families who opened their homes to house those displaced for several days in yet another enormous show of community generosity. 

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Check out Park City Restaurant Association's guide to Thanksgiving dining options. It's probably too late to order a catered Thanksgiving, but dining out options are still available!
The Alf Engen Museum at Olympic Sports Park
High West Distillery 
Thanksgiving At-Home Activities for Kids & Adults - Real Simple
Online Thanksgiving Events with Eventbrite - think live comedy, interactive crafts, & more!
Thanksgiving Movies to Prep You for the Holidays - Town & Country
Winter Movies 2021 - New York Times
Sundance Resort 
Armstrong Trail followed by lunch at Silver Star Café
Round Valley Trails
WOW trail and Dawn's Trail
A few days in Southern Utah, whether it's Moab, Zion or Bryce Canyon, are wonderful ways to witness the incredible accessibility and beauty of our red rock country!

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And finally, we are grateful that it's 2021 and we have amazing technology that helps us stay in contact with our friends, family, and of course, our clients.

We wish you and yours a very Happy and Healthy Thanksgiving! 

Coming in a few weeks!