Legacy Ranch Dedication Marks Historic Milestone for Boys to Men Mentoring Network
A vibrant tapestry of spring wildflowers beckoned guests on their journey to the top of Palomar Mountain to celebrate the dedication of Legacy Ranch. Gathered in the shade of a canopy of Oak trees, and captivated by sweeping views of the valley below, guests were given a first-hand encounter with a sacred space that inspires Boys to Men Network’s mission: resolving the devastating effects of fatherlessness in the lives of young men.
Since Boys to Men Mentoring Network acquired the property in 1996, the ranch has served as a base camp for the nonprofit organization’s Adventure Mountain Weekends. A $100,000 gift from the Rolf Benirschke Legacy Foundation, paid off the mortgage on the property, ensuring the weekend retreats will continue to engage and empower young men for generations to come.
In honor of the foundation’s priceless gift, Boys to Men hosted a celebration designed to immerse guests in the natural beauty of Legacy Ranch, cultivate their appreciation of the ranch as a backdrop for Adventure Mountain Weekend mentoring activities, and impart the organization’s aspirations for upgrading the property –- as well as enhancing the retreat experience for boys and their mentors — in the months and years to come.
After participating in tours of the ranch footprint, guests sat down at festively-decorated picnic tables for a delicious barbecue lunch prepared and served by Boys to Men volunteers.
A tribute to the Legacy Foundation capped off the celebration. Boys to Men Co-Founder and Executive Director Craig McClain delivered a moving thank you to the foundation, and invited founder and chairman, Rolf Benirschke and his fellow board member, Ernie Hahn, to lead the unveiling of the Legacy Ranch plaque. McClain crafted the plaque from the wood of an oak tree that had graced the property for generations, but recently had succumbed to a parasite. The spirit of the ancient oak tree will live on at Legacy Ranch as a testament to the enduring power of Boys to Men’s mission.
McClain described the synergy between Legacy Ranch and the spirit of redemption and transformation that informs and inspires Adventure Mountain Weekends.
“To date, more than 1,000 boys have participated in our Adventure Mountain Weekends,” McClain explained. “During the retreats, our boys are challenged and supported through a series of carefully-facilitated activities designed to help them develop the life skills they will need to navigate manhood.”
Boys to Men Co-Founder and Director of Community Development Joe Sigurdson concurred, bringing the purpose of the weekend retreats full-circle: “Our boys receive peer and mentor support during their Adventure Mountain Weekend experiences. They are challenged to answer questions that empower them to reflect on their lives, discover the possibilities for a meaningful and rewarding quality of life, and take the first steps towards becoming the good men they want to be.”