Retreat Center 1Sometimes life throws us an unexpected curve. Sometimes it turns out the better choice! That’s what happened in July when we were making final commitments for our 2016 Vahsholtz Family Reunion in Idaho!

It turned out we couldn’t get Camp Perkins guaranteed for any weekend during the summer of 2016! After a wee bit of panic, my level-headed husband suggested we take a look at the brand new River Canyon Retreat Center (pictured above) that just opened in Garden Valley!

Retreat Center 2We were amazed at how the owners had turned old, unused buildings into very modern, beautiful accommodations with a great variety of dorm-type sleeping facilities, a beautiful kitchen/dining area, a full-size gym for all kinds of sports which includes a rock climbing wall and a stage (for family talent to be shared?). There are also RV hookups, it’s handicap accessible, the facility is fully air conditioned, there’s an above-ground pool, a pond stocked with fish, a mini-zip line and a lovely expanse of lawn for just sitting and enjoying the view of the nearby mountains in this beautiful valley. There’s also a game room with pool table and foosball.

So, a down payment to hold the facility for our group has been made. We have the whole facility for three nights, Thursday, July 14th, Friday andSaturday, leaving Sunday Morning, July 17th. You can have a look at the facility and read all the details at: Please remember most rooms, like Camp Perkins, are dormitory style, so we’ll probably work out some sort of “Men’s” and “Women’s” accommodations. It’ll be like going back to summer camp, university days, or visiting relatives in the “good ol’ days.” See Geri’s article on page five. This is a family gathering!

Assuming the lowest likely number of 30 attendees at the reunion, we’ve estimated the total cost per person at $160 per adult; $80 per child for all three days! We’re asking you to send a non-refundable deposit of half your family’s cost, $80 per adult; $40 per child, by January 30th, 2016. That will hold your place (and help get your most suitable accommodations—let us know if you’re a large group or have special needs). Everybody will pay the same rate, including those in RVs, and that includes one dinner and light breakfasts each morning. We hope far more than 30 will be attending, and if so, the cost to each of us will go down. If you miss the January 30th deadline, the price for a later decision will increase the required deposit to $100 per adult and $50 per child, reducing everyone else’s cost! Send check and room preference to:

Ruth Richter

PO Box 677

Garden Valley, ID 83622

map 2What are the benefits of this move to Garden Valley as opposed to Stanley, Idaho? One is closer proximity to the airport in Boise for anybody who might be flying, and that same closeness to an interesting city might be of interest to some. In Garden Valley, outdoor activities such as hiking, white water rafting and kayaking, biking, fishing, soaking in hot springs, tubing on one of the rivers, as well as fun and interesting shopping opportunities are literally on the doorstep of the retreat center. We also have a marvelous outdoor theater with nightly plays of really outstanding quality. A variety of restaurants, bars, food stands, outdoor market are also readily available within a short drive. We will surely also include some live interviews on the local all-volunteer radio station giving you the opportunity to share with locals what you think of the offerings in the Valley. We plan to include an evening Family Talent Show, so hone your musical skills, poetry, comedy skit, pantomime, or other routine!

This may be the only Vahsholtz Family Reunion held in Idaho, even though there are a sizable number of us who live in the Northwest. We hope you will seriously consider making this a real family vacation to a part of the U.S. that many of you have probably never visited.

In the next newsletter, we’ll include lots more information about things you can do for your whole vacation here and going and coming as well. Meanwhile, you can email at any time with your questions and concerns.

It does get hot in Idaho in July, but those of you coming from the Midwest are going to be amazed about the daily variance of temperature here. From 50s overnight to 95 during the day … and what a difference that can make.

Looking forward to seeing lots of you in beautiful Garden Valley!  ■