River Bend Nature Center (RBNC) is a twenty acre non-profit environmental education facility that has entertained and informed visitors for over 20 years. Approximately 35,000 people walk through the center each year, of which over half are kids. The center houses several species of critters that are native to this area and walking through the center one learns how each plant, animal, and other things that crawl or slither, rely on each other for survival. The staff care for each resident critter with great care and compassion. Everything there from turtles to tarantulas have a name, and many even have a nickname in addition to that. One of the most popular attractions is the butterfly conservatory.
Being a non-profit facility, RBNC relies heavily on donations and fund raising opportunities to help pay the bills. This summer one of the most fun ways to raise money presented itself. A company called Over The Edge that has helped raise over 60 million dollars for non-profits actually contacted RBNC to see if they would be interested in teaming up and, of course, they accepted.
Over the edge has sent over 30 thousand people over the edge and pride themselves in safety and professionalism. Each participant will be geared up, guided, and lowered by a professional. No experience necessary. You can participate in the lowering or just hang out and let them lower you down if you prefer.
So, how does one get the chance to rappel down Big Blue? First, go to www.riverbendnaturecenter.org and find the events page, register by paying a $25 tax deductible fee, and follow the instructions. You will receive your own page where people can donate toward your goal and advice on how to reach your goal. Once you raise $1000 you get to go Over The Edge. You can even do it as a team or business to help reach the goal quicker and easier. If you are an over achiever and hit $1500 you receive the GoPro video footage of your descent. Every dollar raised goes to RBNC and is tax deductible for the donor. River Bend Nature Center is currently about 70% of the way to their $100k goal for this event.
The big event will take place on Saturday, September 23rd from 9am to 5 pm at Big Blue on the corner of Scott and 8th St. downtown. Participants will be sent over the edge approximately every 15 minutes. There will be vendors and activities for people that prefer to stay grounded.