Eagle Mount hosts wounded vets

By ALEX KOMSTHOEFT/Montana State News

Eagle Mount will host its second annual EMBLEM Winter Ski Camp this week, providing an empowering experience to wounded veterans across Montana, according to Gretchen Simms, assistant ski director for Eagle Mount.

EMBLEM, or Eagle Mount Bozeman Lasting Experiences for Military, is a program for wounded warriors who have been severely injured while serving our country.  EMBLEM participants will receive individual ski or snowboard lessons from Eagle Mount instructors trained to provide therapeutic recreation for people with disabilities.

The non-profit received a grant from Disabled Sports USA and War Fighter Sports to purchase skis and snowboards for the four-day ski camp. Murdoch’s Ranch and Home Supply also donated boots and clothing to each of the participants and their caregivers.

“The week is all about empowerment,” said Simms. “Having them reintegrated back into society, we hope to make them realize they can come back from war, live a normal life, make friends and have fun. They shouldn’t have to bring the war home with them.”

The warriors and their caregivers are provided with their own cabins inside of the Yellowstone Club in Big Sky, a sponsor of the event. Participants also have the opportunity to engage in evening activities including rock climbing, poker and movies.

This is just one of the many special events Eagle Mount puts on during the winter. On February 25, Moonlight Basin will host the 2013 Special Olympics Big Sky Area Winter games. Eagle Mount is in need of ski volunteers to facilitate advanced, intermediate and novice skiing competitions, several walking volunteers to assist with the snowshoe competitions and several others to help with administrative opportunities around the lodge. Those interested can contact Kathy Pallach at kathyl@grizzlydiscoveryctr.com.

Edited by Matt Parsons

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