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Getting Back to Nature - “Friend-raising” on Summer Vacation

Summer in Aspen, Colorado is as well known for its social and political gatherings as for the majestic landscape of mountain peaks, lush valleys, and cool, crisp air.  For some Houston-based outdoor enthusiasts, their midsummer vacations provided more than just some time away from the sweltering heat, it presented the perfect natural venue to hold a “friendly” session to raise awareness on Texas environmental issues.

Denise Monteleone graciously hosted 70 supporters of The Nature Conservancy in her plush mountain garden just northeast of downtown Aspen.  The topic:  Texas conservation strategies.

The “Friendraiser” and cocktail reception was less about raising money than creating person to person relationships and sharing information for the conservancy of Texas’ natural elements.  With keen focus on the Lone Star state, Laura Huffman, the Texas State Director for The Nature Conservancy, discussed Texas conservation efforts and fielded questions from the group regarding specific initiatives.  

Houston residents Jana and Scotty Arnoldy, Susan and Dick Hansen, Marci and Steven Alvis, Clayton Erickson, Nanette and Jerry Finger, Mindy and Jeff Hildebrand, and Ann and Don Short were among the event attendees.  The guests mingled and dined on delicious Spicy Shrimp Skewers and a variety of hors d’oeuvres from Aspen-based Epicure Catering byJuliaandAllen Domingos.

Though the Texas Hill Country doesn’t quite tower in the same way as the Rocky Mountains, there aren’t many better venues to discuss the environment than among some of the highest peaks in the nation during the summer months.