Toast to the Season with Paws Up Sommelier Kyle Riggs

Ask Kyle Riggs what wine you should bring to a wintertime party, and he’ll tell you it’s hard to beat Bordeaux-inspired reds. Whether you like Napa’s fruit-forward Cabernet Sauvignons or the more assertively tannic Cabernets from France, winter and fine red wines belong together. “And I’m in love with some of the Willamette Valley Pinot Noirs. I think that’s a quintessential winter wine choice,” Riggs said.

A few favorites to look for:

CALIFORNIA
2015 Chappellet Pritchard Hill Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley
2013 Kenefick Ranch Founder’s Reserve, Calistoga, Napa Valley
2015 Robert Foley Claret, Napa Valley

OREGON
2015 Antica Terra Botanica Pinot Noir, Willamette Valley
2015 Ponzi Reserve Pinot Noir, Willamette Valley

FRANCE
2008 Cos d’Estournel Grand Cru, Saint-Estèphe, Bordeaux

GERMANY
2016 Dr. Loosen “Blue Slate” Riesling, Mosel

Summer Kids Inspiration at Paws Up

Part sport, part adventure and all fun, the Henry the Sports Bug Camp at Paws Up seamlessly fits into our guest experience. Along with the popular Kids Corps of Discovery, this new kids’ program includes lots of nurture with plenty of nature, compliments of Montana’s great outdoors.

Henry, the hero of a series of books and videos created by former collegiate and professional tennis player Melissa Detwiler. Detwiler uses her background in sports, Henry the adult-size buggy mascot and local athletes to help kids develop a love of sports and good sportsmanship. Henry the Sports Bug Camp teaches everything from soccer and tennis to golf and basketball, as well as how to build self-confidence and make healthy lifestyle choices. We sat down with Detwiler to find out more about her background, passions, amazing charity efforts and more.

How did you come up with Henry the Sports Bug?

Henry the Sports Bug is a creation stemming from my childhood being a tennis prodigy. I started playing at seven years old, and—quite quickly—tennis became my life. With all of that came a ton of pressure and not a lot of fun. I missed out on developing a love and passion for tennis. It became a part of me. It’s what I did and what I was known for. However, I didn’t have balance in my life. As I got older I realized how important balance is and loving what you do. I started teaching tennis when I moved to Los Angeles in 1992 and my main goal was for children to have fun playing the sport. I gained so many positive things from playing a sport growing up that I wanted to be able to pass that along to all kids. Henry the Sports Bug was my creative outlet to do that. No matter what sport you play, you get the same benefits of being healthy, being disciplined, developing confidence, showing good sportsmanship and learning how to win and how to lose. Sports give you the tools to become a leader in life and sets you up for success in the adult world. I am motivated to have Henry the Sports Bug reach kids everywhere, because I know how sports can change your life in a positive way.

How did your tennis career inspire you to work with children?

I did not want anything to do with tennis after my career ended. I was burnt out and had a lot of bitterness toward it. When I moved to Los Angeles, I needed a job, so I went to a local tennis club and they hired me on the spot. I started working with kids, and this inspired me. I absolutely love to see kids happy, laughing and having fun while getting better at tennis. Henry the Sports Bug inspires a positive change in kids’ lives. Henry the Sports Bug has healed me and is the best result of my tennis career.

Tell us more about your charity efforts.

From the very first thought of Henry the Sports Bug, I knew I wanted a nonprofit side to it. I want to be able to reach kids everywhere who have never held a ball or sports equipment. I want to be able to donate sports equipment, sport clothes, books, food and toys to kids around the world. Last year I formed the Henry the Sports Bug Foundation. So far, I have been fortunate to be able to donate tennis rackets and my books to schools in need. In 2013, before I formed the charity side, I went to 40 different elementary schools in 9 different states to put on assemblies where I read to the students, taught them tennis strokes, got them running through Henry’s obstacle course and donated my books. It was an amazing experience and further confirmed that kids, parents and teachers love Henry the Sports Bug and need him. I got so many letters from kids across the country asking me what sports Henry was going to play next and that he inspired them to try a sport. I can’t wait for the day I can travel everywhere donating to schools that have lost their PE programs, communities that have no sports, children that need sponsors to play in their chosen sports and countries where kids have never even seen a tennis ball or soccer ball. That’s when I’ll feel like I have accomplished something.

How many books do you have and what are the differences in each of them?

Currently I have eight books available on Amazon. The first five books set up Henry’s world. He is kind of like a Clark Kent/Superman-type figure. He has his Henry the Bug life, living in the bog dealing with all-too common kid problems, and then he has his superhero life as Henry the Sports Bug, going on missions to help kids in need in the sports world. The first two books incorporate tennis because it’s my background. Henry teaches a little girl tennis and gives her the confidence to make friends with the other kids who play tennis. She was shy and scared at first, but after Henry’s encouragement she could come out of her shell, make friends and play tennis. Books 3 and 4 set up how Henry becomes Henry the Sports Bug. Tito the Magic Turtle gives him a magic mirror to be able to see his next mission. Henry can jump through it to his mode of transportation, Cabo and Lily, the Flying Wonder Dogs! Book 5 is where he goes on his first mission to help a soccer team that is struggling with their confidence and morale. Book 6 is about miniature golf—the Masters of Miniature Golf. Henry the Sports Bug goes to help a boy who wants to play but is lacking focus and confidence. Book 7 is about a football team and community that loves football, but everyone is eating so unhealthy that they have no energy to play or cheer their team on. Henry brings in his nutritionist friend Mo the Morselist to help him change their eating habits and have balance. The eighth book is a little departure from the series. It is for the younger Henry fans who haven’t learned their ABCs yet. Henry hasn’t become Henry the Sports Bug yet; he is just Henry the Bug. He is having a hard time focusing on his schoolwork because all he thinks about is sports. Mrs. Centipede, his teacher, has the great idea of having Henry come up with a sport for every letter of the alphabet. It’s cute and makes learning fun.

What’s your favorite thing about Paws Up so far?

Paws Up is fantastic. I got to experience the Fourth of July festivities at The Resort. Besides the celebration in my hometown of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, this beats anything I have ever experienced. I also love the scenery and the animals. My goal by the end of the summer is to get a cow to let me hug it! Louis the Sheep and I already have a special bond though!

What’s been your favorite activity at Paws Up?

So far I have only experienced the ATVs and sporting clays shooting. My goal is to be more proficient at both by the end of summer, and I hope to be able to experience many more of the fun and exciting activities offered here.

What is one thing you would like children to take away from attending your sports camp?

With my camps, I want children to walk away with a big smile on their faces, telling their parents how much fun they had and how much they love playing sports. The life lessons from playing a sport will come naturally and they won’t feel like it’s a “lesson” because they are having fun!

Top 10 Personal Paws Up Faves

The Resort at Paws Up

My Summer at Paws Up

by Cameron Gutierrez, Paws Up Intern

With all the beauty and adventure here at Paws Up, you may wonder what it’s like to work at the most gorgeous place in the United States. I’m lucky enough to have spent the summer interning here at The Resort. At the end of the summer, I’ll return to California State University in Chico, California, where I am a senior majoring in business administration. (Prior to enrolling in college, I spent six years in the military.) However, once I graduate, my fiancée and I plan to make Montana our permanent home. Paws Up and Montana truly are The Last Best Place. Here are my Top 10 favorite things about working as an intern at Paws Up.

The resort at paws Up
Top 10 Personal Paws Up Faves

1. Paws Up is located in a beautiful part of western Montana. Even after two months of driving to work every day, I will never tire of the magnificent views on Highway 200.

2. The Resort is located on vast land that lends itself to deer and jackrabbit sightings, while hoping for an elusive bald eagle to soar above.

3. River Camp and Moonlight Camp are my two favorite glamping camps. River Camp has a small private beach with an amazing view of the Blackfoot River, located just past the Dining Pavilion. Moonlight Camp, although secluded, has a phenomenal meadow view. Take a small hike down a dirt road, and you’ll find yourself at an access point to the Blackfoot River. The slow-moving water is perfect for a midday swim.

4. The opportunity to meet guests from all over the country and world is incredible.

5. Working in the Transportation Department (Bell Stand) opened my eyes to the inner workings of The Resort, as well as the hard work required to make the entire operation run smoothly.

6. Being a small part of guests’ experiences has been amazing, especially when I hear them talking about how much they enjoyed their time at Paws Up.

7. On my first day at Paws Up, I witnessed the birth of two beautiful baby deer, and I have been able to watch as they grow older each day.

8. A piece of the ranch’s history—and something I really love too—is located off Elk Creek Road, just beyond the pastures. The Morris Ranch House (built in the late 1800s) is beautiful on the outside as well as the inside. Located next to the front door is a picture of the Morris family when they lived in the house.

9. The pasture animals are a great addition to the Montana guest experience. I’ve seen so much unique wildlife here on a daily basis: cattle, horses, buffalo, Watusis and even a beefalo.

10. My time at Paws Up has given me a wonderful summer away from home, and working for The Resort reinforced my dream of living in Montana. I can’t wait to get back!

The Resort at Paws Up

Come Cook with Brooke Williamson at The Resort at Paws Up

Chef Brooke Williamson

Say hello to Chef Brooke Williamson, a fearless and unstoppable Southern Californian who’s become a bit of a regular at The Resort at Paws Up. We love hosting her, because she brings energy and fresh local ingredients to everything she does.

You might know her from Top Chef. She’s currently reappearing to compete in Season 14: Charleston, South Carolina, airing right now on Bravo. In Season 10, Williamson was the runner-up and a favorite among the show’s fans.

When she’s not on TV, she’s busy running the four smash-hit restaurants she owns with her husband. The newest opened just this past October—a fast- casual Hawaiian concept named Da Kikokiko in Playa Vista, a neighborhood of Los Angeles, California.

What does she do for fun? She comes to The Resort at Paws Up, of course. In 2017, she’ll be a featured chef at no fewer than three culinary events: WinterFest on January 19– 22, WildFlavor on April 20–23 and Bounty on the Blackfoot on August 19. So we asked her to tell us about her experiences here.

What’s the first thing you like to do when you arrive at Paws Up?
 I like to grab a drink at Tank and head straight to my cabin to chill on the porch. The sounds of wilderness that surround those cabins are the perfect way to decompress after a day of travel.

What do you look forward to most when you visit? 
Because of the fact that I get to experience the ranch at different times of year, the things I look forward to in terms of activities vary greatly. Between pristine snow and cattle drives, I could stay entertained forever.

But the one thing that I can always count on, no matter what time of year, is the staff. I do a lot of events, all over the country, but never do I travel to a place and feel so welcomed and at home as I do at Paws Up.

What’s a dish you’ve made just for Paws Up guests that was especially wonderful? 
Seafood salad, cucumber and tomato water, compressed melons. I made this dish for an event last summer, and although I would normally gravitate toward mentioning a dish that feels more “Montana,” I actually loved this dish not only because of the setting and weather that it was served in, but mostly because I got to use some of the best local watermelon I’ve ever tasted.

How does cooking in Montana differ from cooking in LA? Cooking in Montana makes you realize how important and special cooking “local” can be. I come from California, where we have beautiful seasons for produce, and an enormous variety of pretty much anything you want.

But Montana helps me realize how specific seasons can actually be based on climate and accessibility. From elk to buffalo to huckleberries and specific mushrooms, it’s especially fun to find new ways to highlight ingredients that I don’t come across every day in Los Angeles.

Join The Resort at Paws Up to Help Montana Pets in Need

canine classic at The Resort at Paws Up

The Resort at Paws Up is opening up its ranch for the eighth time to benefit homeless animals and help the Humane Society of Western Montana maintain its 98% adoption rate. The annual Canine Classic at The Resort at Paws Up, a trail run/hike/walk for you and your dog, will take place on Sunday, September 25, 2016. Participants will zip through a course on the trail system of the beautiful private grounds of The Resort in Greenough, Montana. Hikers and runners can choose from a 2-, 5- or 13-mile hike or run.

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All proceeds raised from the Canine Classic will go straight to the shelter to help with the care of animals. This year’s fundraising goal is $50,000. The funds will help with operational costs, including dog and cat food, vaccinations and daily care for each pet until adoption. Since its inception, the Canine Classic has raised more than $200,000 for the society.

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Participants who choose to fundraise will earn one raffle ticket for each $270 they raise ($270 covers intake costs for one animal at the Humane Society). The winner of the race raffle will win a one-night stay for two at Paws Up, including dinner at The Resort’s award-winning restaurant, Pomp®. This year, the person who raises the most pledges for the shelter will win a two-night glamping getaway at Paws Up.

glamping paws up

“The Canine Classic is truly the quintessential event for pets and their people in Western Montana,” said Emily Adamson, Director of Organizational Advancement for the Humane Society. “From the breathtaking scenery at Paws Up, to the pet-friendly environment and great Montana hospitality, participants get to experience the best of Montana with woman’s best friend.”

the resort at Paws Up

To register and/or sign up to collect pledges, visit https://runsignup.com/canineclassic or call 406-549-3934 (ext. 206). You’ll enjoy a hike or run followed by a complimentary gourmet BBQ lunch and beverages. Participants can also register an hour before the event at the race site. Several shelter dogs will be available to accompany you on your run or walk if you don’t have a dog. Those interested in running or walking with a shelter dog should call the Humane Society prior to the event.

The Resort at Paws Up in Montana

Wine & Bitch Dinner

On Saturday, September 24, 2016, Paws Up will host its annual Wine & Bitch Dinner for Canine Classic participants and their pets. Hosted by The Resort’s Nadine Lipson and her trusty sidekick, Fenway, this unique event offers you and your pooch the chance to bond, relax and enjoy the finer things in life—together. Guests will be able to stroll through a pet expo featuring dog massage therapists, a photo booth and agility demonstrations. Later, a gourmet feast created by Paws Up Executive Chef Ben Jones will be served, complete with fine wine pairings, decadent desserts and scrumptious treats to slide under the table. After the dinner and after the Canine Classic, guests can enjoy music and art by Walter Salas-Humara of the legendary New York band the Silos.

For more information, visit www.pawsup.com.

Wine and Bitch Dinner Paws Up