Suzanne Barkley is a 30-year veteran of Rotary International and a Rotarian of 20 years with the Rotary Club of Conifer. We gratefully appreciate her valuable contribution of this month’s 285 Corridor column.

“Keeping the FUN in FUNdraising!”

That’s the goal for the Rotary Club of Conifer—hosting this year’s 4th annual ConiferFest on Saturday, August 12 at Our Lady of the Pines Church open space area.

Google defines “Fun” as an adjective meaning amusing, entertaining or enjoyable, and as a noun meaning lighthearted pleasure.

And “Fun” is what is in store for our community on Saturday, August 12, from 11 am to dusk. Food trucks will be on site with a variety of tasty foods, beers, wines, seltzers, as well as Coyote Gold margaritas. Business vendors will also be present in their tents with information, displays and items for sale. And, of course, you can expect an incredibly diverse line-up of music!

Musical groups will include Who’s Thomas for light rock, our favorite Captain Quirk for classic rock, blues and soul, and Magoo the Band for New-grass Bluegrass.

Adding to the “FUN” we have an exciting addition this year with two performances during the day by The Sam Gyllenhaal Band, straight from the songwriting capital of the world: Nashville, Tennessee. The band features pop and rock with country influences inspiring their songs with cascading melodies, driving grooves and vivid lyrics, delivered in rich, three-part harmony.

The first band will take the stage at 11:30 am and the program will wrap up around 7:30 pm. No alcohol will be allowed in from outside, but do bring your lawn chairs, blankets and rain gear! You know about our mountain weather! Dogs are always welcome as long as they’re on leashes. For more details, check

The Rotary Club of Conifer was founded decades ago by a group of local male and female professionals interested in coming together to do community service locally along the 285 Corridor as well as abroad.

Rotary International, of which we are a part, was begun in Evanston, Illinois over 100 years ago by a group of businessmen who adopted the motto “Service Above Self” and based their community service-oriented philosophical principles on “The Four-Way Test,” which reads: Of the things we think, say, or do: First, Is it the truth? Second, Is it fair to all concerned? Third, Will it build goodwill and better friendships? Fourth, Will it be beneficial to all concerned? To emphasize the FUN in our continued FUNdraising efforts, we’ve added a Fifth principle: Will it be FUN and inspiring?

Rotary exists to improve people’s lives, locally and globally, through service. Our Conifer club is made up of an interesting and diverse group of men and women, with expanded focuses, some entirely local while others see “Service” internationally. All are directed at understanding and contributing to finding solutions to community and global problems.

Because Rotary remains free of religious or political ties, all our projects are designed to meet real and actual needs as expressed by those who are themselves in need.

Locally, you have probably seen Rotary volunteers out in the community at events with the big yellow educational fire truck in conjunction with Wildfire Ready, or maybe you’ve seen us packing and delivering backpacks of food to children in local schools on the weekends through our 285 BackPack Program. Many of you might have joined us at the dedication of the newly created Rotary Club of Conifer Peace Park located adjacent to the Aspen Park Community Center. The Foothills Home, Garden & Lifestyle Show, hosted together with Evergreen Rotary, just recently raised funds for both clubs’ charitable foundations.

Speaking of FUN—just visualize yourself biting into a fat, ripe, juicy peach, fresh from Palisade on the Western Slope! Our annual peach sale is going on—raising funds to support high school scholarships and sending kiddos to Rotary Youth Leadership camps. Order forms are available at

The word “fest” itself just shouts “FUN!” and “Celebration!” Within the next few weeks, you can play at SummerFest in Evergreen and Elevation Celebration in Conifer. Following those funfests will be ConiferFest! Coming early next year, look for “MindFest – Living your Best Life,” also hosted by the Rotary Club of Conifer.

We hope you will take advantage of all the summer FUN, and please join Conifer Rotarians with your family and friends on August 12 to help keep the FUN in FUNdraising! Your participation allows us to keep giving back to our communities.

For more on any Rotary Club of Conifer projects or membership, see

For ConiferFest information, visit