Snowbird Wilderness Outfitters, a summer camp and conference center located in rural Cherokee County, is working on an expansion thanks to moving from septic to the Town of Andrews’ sewer system.
In February 2018, the Golden LEAF Foundation Board of Directors awarded $200,000 to the Town of Andrews to extend the Town’s sewer collection system to serve Snowbird Wilderness Outfitters, a nearby manufacturing facility, and residential customers. The North Carolina Department of Commerce provided $200,000 in funding, and Snowbird Wilderness Outfitters provided $439,000 toward the connection to this public infrastructure.
According to Matt Jones, Executive Director of Operations at Snowbird Wilderness Outfitters, Golden LEAF support was vital to the connection to the Town’s sewer system which was critical in expanding operations and adding new jobs Snowbird anticipates that over the next several years they will create 20 new full-time jobs at this location.
Snowbird was affected by the pandemic, but was able to be operational with many changes, pivots, and ingenuity. One of the major changes was about spacing out campers and using a cohort model which kept groups of campers safely separated from the large group. The expansion process is underway, and attendees are up to 9,840 to date compared to 2020’s total of 7,139 attendees. Even with the pandemic reducing the number of participants, Snowbird has created 13 new full-time jobs.
“The sewer connection was the critical and necessary first step in infrastructure expansion in order to grow the camp and add attendees,” said Jones. “We are so thankful for Golden LEAF’s decision to support the public infrastructure related to the sewer line connection. I don’t know how it would’ve happened without it.”
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