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24hrs with a Local, Winter

24hrs with a Local: Galena’s Don & Erin, December

In this series, we check in with some of our favorite locals to find out how they would spend a perfect 24 hours in Sun Valley. No trip to Sun Valley is complete without a day enjoyed at Galena Lodge, a community-owned recreation lodge nestled in the Boulder Mountains, 22 miles north of Ketchum. And no one knows Galena Lodge better than its proprietors, Erin Zell and Don Shepler. For 14 years, Erin and Don have welcomed Nordic skiers, backcountry skiers, snowshoers, mountain bikers, hikers, and sightseers to Galena Lodge. Visitors enjoy delicious, locally sourced meals in the restaurant, rental gear and lessons at their on-site shop, and a beautiful trail system in both winter and summer. For this edition of 24hrs in Sun Valley, Erin and Don share their perfect December day in the mountains. What would you do first thing? We’d start by waking up, having some tea, stretching, and eating a breakfast of eggs with avocado and toast in our cabin. We live across the street from Galena Lodge, and the beauty of it, for us, is that we don’t have to go far to have our perfect day off. It’s all right here. How would you spend …

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Innovation, What We're Made Of

What We’re Made Of: Higher Ground

In 1999 the Higher Ground organization began right here in Sun Valley, Idaho with a goal of using recreational therapy for people with cognitive, physical, and developmental disabilities, as well as active-duty military members and veterans. The extraordinary beauty, recreational possibilities and a community that believes that people of all abilities should be able to experience the healing powers of the mountains made Sun Valley an ideal incubator to bring this therapy to fruition. When they first started, it was just about teaching locals with disabilities how to use adaptive skis but their programming has since grown to include so much more. Today, locations for Higher Ground have expanded to the surf of Los Angeles—home to over 300,000 veterans—and  the hiking trails of western New York, home to another one of the largest veteran populations in the country. Using top recreational therapists and mental health professionals, Higher Ground strives to give people of all abilities a better life, bridging the gap between disability and belonging.  Programming Higher Ground offers two types of programming; one for recreation and one for military. Recreational therapy is defined by the American Therapeutic Recreation Association (ATRA) and National Council for Therapeutic Recreation Certification (NCTRC) as a systematic …