Guest Editorial, September 12-14, 2012 | ParkRecord.com

Guest Editorial, September 12-14, 2012

Jacki Zehner, Park City

Two years ago our family moved to Park City from Connecticut. We had flexibility to move anywhere but put Park City at the top of the list because some dear friends, when facing a similar decision a few years earlier, chose to move here. After a few visits, we were hooked, and when people asked us why Park City, our answer was simple: lifestyle. Then and now, we would say that Park City offers amazing access to the outdoors, is culturally rich, is minutes from Salt Lake City, and the airport is the best. But after living here, the answer to that question, "Why Park City?" is much deeper.

Since moving, we have discovered that there are over 80 nonprofits in Park City. To some, that number might be alarming, signifying too many organizations looking to raise money, but we see it differently. We see it as an incredible commitment by countless people, paid and volunteer, wanting to make Park City all it can be, for those with much, and for those with much less.

In its LIVE PC GIVE PC day, the Park City Foundation does a great service in bringing attention to all of them. Our children love Furburbia from which we adopted our second dog, and every day we are grateful to the Mountain Trails Foundation for the space they provide for their walks. Robin Marrouche is the dynamic and talented head of the Kimball Art Center, whose future development plans will truly give Park City a further boost.

I just joined the board of the Sundance Institute, which brings tens of millions of economic benefit to our community every year, and immeasurable value in terms of both real estate values and FUN! True, traffic and parking for those ten days is painful, but we reap the benefits for the other 354 days.

There are also many organizations that serve the many people in need in our community, and one in particular that has really captured our hearts is the Park City Christian Center. It was created 12 years ago with the purpose of serving as a community resource center, helping to meet the immediate and basic needs of residents, serving as a leading networker of community resources, offering counseling, and, most of all, giving hope. Our daughter, Allie, had the honor of volunteering at their food bank that served over 2,500 people last month. The center has started a multitude of programs including the largest food pantry in Summit and Wasatch counties, a thrift store, a boutique shop, a weekly dinner for international seasonal workers, an outreach to Native American communities (Navajo, Goshute), a free legal clinic, and special initiatives reaching low-income children through the schools and seasonal programs. The center leverages over $11 million in food and household supplies, engages hundreds of volunteers in thousands of hours of service projects, and helps countless residents secure the resources they need to survive. Both Greg and I recently joined their board of directors.

On Saturday, September 15, the center will hold its first annual Hike for Hunger at Deer Valley with a goal of bringing families together for a hike while raising support and awareness for the needs of so many in our community and the world. You can find out more atwww.ccofpc.org . This is an event for the whole family so please join us.

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We are all so fortunate to live in such an amazing town. As newcomers, we want to thank all of you committed citizens who make the continual investment of your time, treasure and talents, to make it so special. We join you in your efforts and plan on being here for many years to come.