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BYU-I invites employees to Family Day

The BYU-Idaho Employee Family Day, an event hosted by the Outdoor Learning Center that occurs every semester, is happening at Badger Creek for the faculty and their families on Oct. 17 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Jason Thornton, manager of the OLC and Ropes Course, said employees and their families are all invited to come out to the family day events.

Employee Family Day is free admission, but a ticket must be reserved for every family member, according to the Employee Family Day Web page.

Thornton said the event is completely run by the OLC student leadership, who plan out the event and decide on the theme for each semester.

“We work as a group to decide what will and won’t work,” said Taylor Pennington, an administrative assistant for the OLC and a sophomore studying recreation management.

Thornton said based on the time of year, they will plan different events for the semester.

“We always go with a theme,” Pennington said.

Pennington said this semester’s theme is Halloween.

Pennington said that in the past, the students chose themes like harvest, providing pumpkins for carving and having hay rides. He said when the snow sets in, the students choose winter themes with attractions like tubing.

“We would do the sled hill,” Pennington said.

Thornton said the events are always structured the same way, and that the OLC provides games, food and instruction on how to use the facilities for the designated events they are sponsoring.

Thornton said guests are required to drive themselves to the Badger Creek location in Tetonia, Idaho.

The activities for this semester’s event will consist of the ropes course, a giant swing, a power pole, zip lining, a climbing tower, face painting, archery, black powder rifle shooting and a fish catch.

Thornton said the OLC has a brand new 850-foot long zip line this semester.

“It is probably the finest attraction we have at the OLC,” Thornton said.

Thornton said the new zip line utilizes the most recent technology, allowing it to take riders over 35 mph and has the latest braking system for optimal safety.

Thornton said that while riding the zip line, riders have a view to look forward to.

“You have the most beautiful view of the Tetons as you do the zip line,” Thornton said.

Pennington said the fall is the best time to come to Badger Creek.

“This is the most beautiful time to come to Badger Creek because the aspens are golden and red and the Tetons are in the background,” Thornton said.

Pennington said she has had a great time helping to put on the events because it is fun and exciting.

Thornton said the reason he and the student leadership put on these events is because they want to show gratitude to the faculty at BYU-I.

“This is to say thank you to the staff and provide a fun time for them and their families,” Thornton said. “We do this to give back to the community.”

Thornton said because the number of faculty at BYU-I is larger than the capacity of the OLC, they have to limit the number of tickets they reserve every semester.

“We cap them at 250 tickets,”  Thornton said.

Pennington said more than half of the reservations have been reserved.

Thornton said all faculty that want to attend are encouraged to get their tickets as soon as possible.

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