2016 brings the fourth year of the return of the legendary Deaf Camp Benefit: Summer Festival featuring live music. Our exciting headliner is a Denver based funk band, The Motet. Other acts include Rich Ganson, Starwood, and a tribute to John Denver.
At Deaf Camp Benefit, guests come from around the nation for some fun under the sun on the slopes of Snowmass. Great music, delicious food, and beautiful scenery add up to an amazing weekend one will never forget. The best part of the event? Feeling right at home with the friendly folks you will meet and dance with. And all for a great cause.
Deaf Camp Benefit, originally known as the Deaf Camp Picnic, was established in the 60’s with the help of John Denver, Jimmy Buffet, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, and the likes to support the great things Aspen Camp does for Deaf and hard of hearing kids. We brought this legendary event back in 2013 and included a John Denver Tribute. Read more about the history of Deaf Camp Picnic in the History tab.
All proceeds from this event goes to Aspen Camp, a 501(c)3 non-profit whose focus is on honoring and supporting the Deaf and hard of hearing community through education, experiences, and networking. Learn more about Aspen Camp, Deaf Culture, and/or American Sign Language at www.aspencamp.org.
“In 1967 Reed Harris, a close family friend, came to my Mother to see if she would help him start a camp for children with hearing disabilities or total deafness. Reed had a son who was deaf and he was very passionate about helping the deaf community. The foundation was based out of Reed’s El Jebel home with most of the administrative tasks performed by my mom from our home office. They immediately set out to establish the foundation with the necessary funds to make it successful.
In the early years Summer Picnics were established to raise the money to operate the camp. Local businesses donated items for raffles and the tickets were sold all over town, mainly by family members and friends. In the second year of Picnic a GMC Truck was the main raffle attraction which was donated by the local Glenwood Springs GMC dealership.
Each year the picnics doubled in size. The first picnic was held in the backyard of one of the volunteers. By the second year, the picnic already needed a new home. The Cattleman’s Association offered up their picnic area up Castle Creek where it remained for the next few years.
Over the years my father had done work for John Denver and he had become a family friend. Waterhen my mom approached John to see if he and his band would volunteer to play at the picnic, he was more than enthusiastic and offered to invite other bands to play as well. With John headlining, a larger place for the picnic was needed. There was a large tract of land at the base of the Campground Chair Lift in the Snowmass Valley made available. This new location had a lot of room for the picnic as well as plenty of parking. John secured a bandstand which was large enough to accommodate plenty of musicians and their required equipment.
By John’s second year he started inviting members of The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Jimmy Buffett and some of the Eagles as well as other big names. The crowds grew exponentially each year and the “Camp” was in good hands financially. These picnics were my mom’s contribution to the camp and they eventually took their toll. The work required her full time and she still had a family to take care of and a home based business that she and my father ran. By the mid-1970 my mother had to step down and pass the picnic on to others to manage.
These picnics provided a lot of entertaining stories to tell but those will have to wait for now. Reed and my mother are both gone from the camp and each has passed away. They started something wonderful and their legacy lives on today.”
To learn more about Aspen Camp and how it came to be, visit www.aspencamp.org/history.
Saturday, July 16 (Base Village)
Artist information coming soon.
Volunteer at Deaf Camp Benefit: Summer Festival and you’ll get the best of both worlds: helping and being a part of community while enjoying the festivities! Volunteers will get a shirt to show your pride for the event and Aspen Camp.
All volunteer shift combinations are predetermined to ensure everyone has equal time on the clock. This means no one is ever forced to miss the entire show or working to exhaustion. We want all our volunteers to be able to enjoy their weekends too! Volunteer opportunities are separated into the categories below:
– Set up/take down
– Stage support
– Collecting donations
– Selling merchandise
Please be prepared to check in at the main volunteer tent ONE hour prior to your shift start time. This way you’ll get the training and resources you need to feel good about your important role.
Interested? Fill out the form below and we’ll get in touch with you.
Want your organization to bring a group of volunteers and be recognized for your contribution to the community? Please email volunteer @ aspencamp.org.
Aspen Camp is collecting silent auction items and will be posting more information as gifts are confirmed.
Want your business to be recognized at Deaf Camp Benefit with a donation towards the silent auction? Please contact katie @ aspencamp.org.
Deaf Camp Benefit is free to everyone. Enjoy the event and bring a friend!
Since we rely on the support of communtiy members like you, donations are greatly appreciated and can be made at www.aspencamp.org/donate.
Want to get your name out to our fans while helping a great cause? Partnership information for the 2016 event coming soon.