“Glamping” in Greenough

We continue to be at the center of the “Glamping” (glamorous camping) phenomena.  We were recently featured on a short video by ViroPop.  See below (you can move forward to 1:05 to the start of the Glamping portion of the video):

Note: we also salute Apple’s green efforts.  Nice to see other companies sharing our passion for eco-friendly behavior.

Jennifer Domansky, editor at GlampingGirl.com, has written articles about both Tent City and River Camp.  She did a great job capturing the essence of both of these canvas communities.  Be sure to check out her website.

Natasha’s Quest

We have been following the story of Natasha Hurst, a small business owner from Canada, who is chronicling her weight-loss goal on her blog.  She has set up a series of “rewards” that she gets when she reaches certain benchmarks of pounds lost.  One of her “rewards” is a weekend getaway with her husband to The Resort at Paws Up.  We are flattered by being chosen as the destination associated with this reward.  We are 100% behind Natasha and support her in this great effort she is putting forth.  We can’t wait to welcome her and her husband to The Resort soon.  Go Natasha!

Check Us Out on Facebook!

First, a blog.  Now, a profile on Facebook!  The Resort at Paws Up is really trying to keep up with the social media phenomena.  Technology has come a long way since Lewis & Clark navigated their way through our neck of the woods without Google Maps approximately 200 years ago.  We are excited to connect with our many friends and members of the “Paws Up Family”.  We’ll keep you posted on all of the events and happenings from Greenough, MT.

Click Here to check out our Facebook Profile!

It’s All About the People

As those of you on the West or East Coast and in the South get a taste of what winter in Montana feels like, we in the frozen northwest are now planning for the coming season. We spend an awful lot of time brainstorming on how to make those of you who vacation with us have the experience of a lifetime. What comes from these sessions is that what makes this place special: the people.

You might expect that a blog from the ‘HR guy’ would naturally be about the people, but in this case it rings true. A large portion of our guest comments are about how different our staff is, who share their way of life and provide a window into the Montana lifestyle.

Trail riding isn’t something our cowboys and cowgirls stage so guests get a western experience. Our wranglers ride their own horses on days off. Fishing guides take you to their special spot on the river and they take you down rivers they fished as a child. They share a part of the Big Sky that keeps them here.

The pace is slower, the journey less crowded with time to think and dream and breathe. Our people understand that and don’t get in the way. What our guests say is that our staff makes them feel like they belong and they treat them like friends. I guess that’s why so many people come back and ask for staff by name. Friendships have been formed from great life experiences and isn’t that what a vacation is supposed to be. Our people hope to see you soon.

– Brad Lassiter, Director of Human Resources

Walla Walla Coming to Montana

We are really excited to be featuring wines from Casey McClellan and Seven Hills Winery for our Walla Walla in Montana event April 3rd and 4th. Seven Hills is the oldest vineyard in Walla Walla and has been a pioneer in Washington State for many years. Seven Hills Winery has a broad range of wines that should be fun to work with. Chef Coffel is looking forward to the pairings and has started to work on number of menu items tailored to Seven Hills wines. We’ve tried a nice crisp Riesling recently and a nice Red Mountain Cabernet as well. I look forward to trying Casey’s version of Viognier which has always been a favorite grape of mine.

– Kevin Kapalka, Director of Food & Beverage

Greetings from your Lodging Friends

A quick hello from a Winter Wonderland called The Resort at Paws Up.  Looking outside and seeing how beautifully white everything still is, we can take a moment to reminisce about the great Christmas we celebrated here together.  Christmas is a family event and we have been lucky to have such an extended Paws Up family during this time. To hear the jingle bells of the horse drawn sleigh, and to see our Guests cuddled up under blankets and enjoying the majestic surroundings of Greenough under falling snow, looking forward to a hot cup of cocoa at the end of the trail. That is the true feeling of Christmas.  Our Guests ice skating until dark, or enjoying the tubing down the hill, knowing that there will be a nice fire burning in their homes, warmly decorated for the season and a scrumptious dinner awaiting them, brought smiles to their faces.

In a combined effort of some of our wonderful Guests and Paws Up staff, we had Frosty coming alive in the front yard of the Reception Barn. Their hands were getting cold, but the results were amazing.

Christmas 2008 was what you would hope Christmas to be and we are looking forward to Christmas 2009 and welcoming all of our Paws Up family back.  Happy New Year from all of us in the Lodging Department.

– Wonny Rengersen

Happy New Year!

The New Year’s Eve festivities are in full swing – guests are enjoying dinner, games, conversation and of course, libations. Chef Wes’ menu is a big hit as usual, starting off with a fun amuse of a Lobster Corn Dog with Carrot Ketchup. As one guest told me, “you know you’re in a high-end place when the corn dogs are made from lobster”. Other highlights of the evening include an Oyster Sampler with Preserved Lemon & Whitefish Roe, Ahi & Passion Fruit-Truffle Vinaigrette, Cucumber & Champagne Mignonette; Squab Roulade with Foie Gras & Wild Rice Stuffed Cabbage, Minus 8 Vinegar; Marrow Bean Soup with Smoked Pork Won Ton; Seared Ahi with Ricotta Gnocchi, Fennel Purée, Olive Mousse and Poached Lobster with Celery Root-Potato Purée, Spinach, Black Truffle, Cognac Butter. After dinner it is off to the Tank & Trough for games, Texas hold’em, fireworks and music by Mudslide Charlie. If you haven’t experienced the beauty of a fireworks display reflecting off the snow on a crisp Montana New Year’s Eve, you just don’t know what you’re missing. As we approached midnight, the crowd grew more and more excited, not just in anticipation for the New Year, but also because one of our guests (who just happens to be a famous drummer) had joined the band for an awesome jam session. Midnight brought cheers, toasts and well wishes for new friends and old. The forecast calls for another six inches of snow tonight so 2009 will arrive in a fresh blanket of white. Happy New Year from all of us at Paws Up. Cheers.

– Jim Nielsen

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas from all of us at Paws Up. Christmas Eve was a beautiful day that found our guests basking in the sun while they played outside in our big backyard – ice skating, horseback riding, snowmobiling, tubing and dog sledding were the top draws. Christmas Eve evening brought our annual kid’s craft party where our younger guest made tree ornaments and decorated cookies – a little overindulgence of sugar just helps keep up the holiday spirit. The highlight of the evening was of course the visit from Papa Noel…Saint Nicholas…Father Christmas…Kris Kringle…Pere Noel, the head elf himself, Santa Claus!! Santa visited the kid’s party and then made his way to guest homes to deliver toys and good cheer. Here is a picture of me giving him some last minute instructions (and of course my last minute wish list – peace on earth, the end of the recession and my very own Rock’em, Sock’em Robots). Christmas Eve dinner was terrific, highlights included Seared Beef Tenderloin with Crispy Cheese Curds, Mustard Braised Kohlrabi, Onion Marmalade and tradition with a twist: Lacquered Goose Breast with Chestnut Stuffing, Delicata Squash, Maple, Broccoli.

Horse drawn sleigh and wagon rides have been popular all holiday season; here is a shot of our fine Norwegian Fjord team, Pete and Re-Pete. They have been busy every evening taking guests on rides through the homes.

Christmas Day brought fresh snow and cloudy weather, the perfect day to curl up in front of the fire and enjoy the company of the ones you love. Many of our guests did just that, while others spent the day checking off those activities they hadn’t had an opportunity to try yet. Dinner preparations are in full swing. Taking a look at the menu, I can’t wait to try the Roasted Elk Loin with Dried Cherry Porridge, Kohlrabi, Cherry Syrup and the Baked Montana – Huckleberry Ice Cream, Almond Cake, Meringue and Chocolate Huckleberry Sauce.

Happy Holidays from all of us at The Resort at Paws Up and best wishes for the New Year.

– Jim Nielsen

Let It Snow!

After much anticipation, the snow has finally arrived in The Blackfoot Valley!  We have 6-8 inches on the ground now and anticipate much more in the coming weeks.  In fact, the extended forecast is predicting a White Christmas!  We’re hoping that this much snow and the very chilly temperatures will bring the snow geese by on their migration. They came by last year, so we hope they make an annual pilgrimage to Paws Up.  I love this time of year at The Resort.  As I type this, I’m looking out the window of my office across our expansive meadow and up to the Scapegoat and Mission Mountains–all blanketed by white.  I can’t wait to get out on a snowmobile and out of the office.  

Christmas is only a week away and we’re ready.  We can’t wait to celebrate the holidays with our guests. Santa’s on his way…and we’ll make sure he leaves on time to deliver presents to the rest of the world.  Last year, we caught him relaxing with his feet up in a Big Timber Home, and had to remind him that he had many more places to go.  We also found his reindeer flirting with the ladies of our resident elk herd.  It won’t happen again.  We promise.

– Jim Nielsen

Proud To Announce…

Greetings from frosty Montana.  “It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas” around here; trees, lights, and decorations abound and the ice skating rink looks ready for a triple-sowkow.  The forecast is for continued cold weather and snow, so we are all looking forward to a “White Christmas”.

Some great news for all of you foodies out there, we have our first feature chef and vintner for Montana Master Chefs 2009.  Texas’ own, Kent Rathbun of Abacus, Jasper’s and Shinsei Restaurants will join us fresh off his defeat of Iron Chef Bobby Flay on Iron Chef America.

Our first vintner on the books is the renowned winemaker and owner, John Williams of Frog’s Leap Winery.  This landmark Napa Valley winery has consistently produced world-class wines and has the best motto in the wine business: “Time’s fun when you’re having flies”  and the only cork that says Ribbit! when you uncork the bottle.  We are off to a great start and the soon-to-be-announced chefs and vintners are equally as impressive.

All you fans of Bravo TV’sTop Chef, keep an eye on this season’s competition from New York.  One of the competitors will face off against Stephanie Izard, the winner of The Top Chef Cook Off Challenge from Montana Master Chefs 2008 in MMC ’09.  Who will it be?  Stay tuned.

– Jim Nielsen