“In seed time learn, in harvest teach, in winter enjoy.”
In the spring we spend a great deal of time thinking about what went well and what went not so well with the past season. Spring is a time for planning and evaluation, in addition to a kennel wide inventory, gear cleaning and repair. In the fall we leader train and start conditioning, and of course then in the winter we enjoy. But what about that odd 3 months of Alaskan summer?
Summer has always felt strangely like a season sandwiched between the post season mushing let down and the excitement of getting your team out for fall training. But still, good things come in summer. Of course we are with the dogs every day, caring for them and keeping up on the dog yard. And we free run as often as the temperature allows. In addition it is a time for us to invest in our own projects, and for me that has meant a lot of structured physical therapy to make sure I am will be ready for the runners this winter. And a time for us to work on securing the very important sponsorships that make it possible for our team to be a part of the Iditarod and other long distance races in Alaska. It is also a season of spectacular growth as plants take full advantage of the 24 hour daylight to squeeze the maximum amount of life out of our short season.
As I was thinking about today’s blog my mind was playing with the similarities between sponsors and gardens. In particular the amazing sponsors who have for years been a part of Team Dew Claw. Like the perennials that each year bloom with vibrant color to add beauty to our lives, we have been very fortunate to work with a group of wonderful people and companies that brighten our lives with encouragement and support.
So in this spirit, please enjoy these photos from the Dew Claw gardens, and join us in Thanking our Sponsors for being a part of Team Dew Claw~
Thank You Usibelli Coal Mine~
Usibelli is a major sponsor that has been a part of our team since my rookie Yukon Quest. Usibelli is well known for their community involvement and corporate giving in Interior Alaska. Relatively speaking we are a small part of what they give back to the community annually. Because lets face it, they provide a week of free family entertainment at the Tanana Valley State Fair, multiple Scolarships to students attending UAF, and the Emil Usibelli Distinguished Teaching, Research, and Service Awards funds three individual $10,000 awards annually, just to list some of what they do. We may be a small part of what they do, but do not underestimate what a big deal it is for us.
Thank You ManMat~
We count on ManMat for the best quality mushing gear, and they never disappoint. It is a real benifit to our team to have gear we can count on. In 2011 I raced 2600 miles (Yukon Quest 1000, Iditarod 1000, Copper Basin 300, Yukon Flats Chief David Salmon 300) and that is just race miles. I had to train hard to do it. And my ManMat harnesses preformed without a single worry all season long. If I was not already sold on the ManMat products, let me tell you that year sealed the deal. We are running our team in the ManMat Long Distance Harness.
Thank You Bailey Farms~
OK as far as we know we are not related, but Baileys are inherently good (I say with some bias). And the Freeze dried meats we have been able to get through Bailey Farms are without a doubt the best quality freeze dried product we have ever used. Shelf stable at any temp, and far and away the lightest meat product you can carry, and dogs love it. Seriously I can not imagine racing without it. And now through their new website you can order it as well.
And a very special Thank You to a new team member, Dr. Carsons Pet Products, Alaska Heavenly Honey~
Yes this year Dew Claw dogs and mushers will have a real advantage in maintaining our health and wellness, with a complete line of all natural supplements for pets and a wide selection of honey products for human health. Check out the ‘Health Benefits of Propolis‘ or read more about ‘Benefits of Natural Honey‘ at Alaska Heavenly Honey facebook page.
Again MUSH THANKS to all who have joined Team Dew Claw!
But our work continues, there is still much to do and many miles & challenges ahead of us. And we are looking forward to every minute of it. To quote a personal favorite of mine, Henry Rollins:
“We know that in September, we will wander through the warm winds of summer’s wreckage. We will welcome summer’s ghost.”
Of course we are still looking for additional sponsorship for the 2014-15 race season. Are you a company that would benefit from some Iditarod exposure, or an individual wanting to be personally involved in the Iditarod dream; there is room for you on our team. Learn more at our website.