VR Echo Day is Vail Resorts’ annual company-wide volunteer day. Whether forging new trails or helping restore a town park, Echo Day allows employees of all ages (and their friends and family, too!) to rally around a local community need. Established in 2010, VR Echo Day has allowed a total of 2,246 volunteers to give 8,900 hours of time to three years worth of projects.
My son, Rowan and I have been attending Echo Day since 2011 when we planted trees in Van Sickle State Park. In 2012, we helped pick up trash at Lakeview Commons while learning all about “reduce, reuse, recycle” and taking care of our environment. This year, my 2 year old daughter, Abby, also got to join in on the fun.
We helped spread wood chips at the playground at Bijou Park and got to catch bugs out in the meadow with Entomologist Kirk Hardie from Tahoe Institute for Natural Sciences (TINS). Leslie Amato, Heavenly Daycare Manager, has done an awesome job over the years facilitating age appropriate tasks for the small children to join in on this special day and contribute to the greater good.
The theme she presented to the children was Community and “what does it mean to you?” My answer is that community is a different word for describing our home. The places we go on a daily basis, such as work, school, etc. The people we meet while we are out and about and the networking that naturally happens when we are involved; and the way we contribute back to this place we call home.
It is a full circle in the end and echo day is one small way my family and I can give back to our community that gives so much joy to us. We are already looking forward to what next year’s echo day will be!
~ Jamie Gower, Health and Safety Manager