Summertime & the Livin's Easy..

July, 30 2023


As spring changes to summer and the last snow melts, wildflowers are beginning to pop up from the grassy hills. Alongside the Balsamroot, Larkspur, Mules Ears and critters roaming about, you will also notice framing, roofing, siding, and infrastructure popping up everywhere. Yes, the development boom is still booming - the signs are there in every direction you look.

Our team at VARD remains diligent. And, when time comes for action, you can count on us to inform you, empower you, stand alongside you, and speak up in public hearings.

Together, we achieve! Together, we will continue to protect our community and the Valley's vital habitat from irresponsible development. And, while it's not always easy to see what we have accomplished, we cherish this place, and are proud of what you won't see:

High Noon Dude Ranch

(aka. Scandinavian Spa.. bison refuge.. and/or who knows what else?!)

YOU WON'T SEE:  A commercial dude ranch on over 500 acres located in the foothills of the Big Holes - with the potential for 39 residential homes, 62 cabins, a Scandinavian spa, and other commercial ventures.

YOU WILL SEE:  Telluride, CO reaching out to VARD for guidance as they work to proactively voice their concerns over a luxury hotel proposed by the same High Noon development team. "I wish that we had a responsible development organization like yours in our area." Cath Jett, 10 year member of the Town Council and 6 years on the Design Review Board, Telluride Mountain Village.

Teton Ave LLC. Driggs Development

YOU WON'T SEE:  A 96-unit housing project consisting of 24 four-plexes on land near Driggs skate park - which includes two delineated wetlands.

YOU WILL SEE:  Driggs neighbors and VARD staff banding together to ensure their City Council affirms the denial of this proposal at the upcoming hearing next month - July 18th.

River's West Multi-Phased Driggs Development

YOU WON'T SEE:  A large development near the Driggs schools creating dangerous impacts within the Safe Routes to School zone. Phase One consisted of 24 twin lots (average of .11 acres each) and was only 14.5% of the whole project - 166 lots proposed in four phases.

Broulim's in Downtown Victor

YOU WON'T SEE:  A large chain supermarket in the center of downtown, pedestrian friendly Victor. The property was once Victor Elementary School and is zoned for Civic use.

Teton West Resort & RV Park

YOU WON'T SEE:  107 RV units on 37 acres entirely within protected habitat - Priority Wetland Habitat, Big Game Migration Corridors/Seasonal Range, Songbird/Raptor Breeding and Wintering Habitat - built out with full hook-up RV sites, cabins, restroom/shower facility, playground, pavilion, yurts, glamping sites, clubhouse, parking and a walking trail.

Under Canvas Glamping

YOU WON'T SEE:  90 stark white glamping tents on just over 90 acres donning the hillside as you enter idyllic Moose Creek. All tents outfitted with wood stoves and situated on the edge of the forest in active large game and natural resource habitat.

YOU WILL SEE:  Castle Valley, UT reaching out to VARD for guidance as they work to reroute Under Canvas away from their community and pristine lands. "As we formed our residents into a cohesive group opposing an Under Canvas resort near our community, we realized we needed help from  organizations that have been advocating for protection of public lands for a long time- and that have successfully resisted Under Canvas. VARD helped us get going in the right direction, and now we’re gearing up for the fight. Thanks Niki and Emily!" Harry Holland,  Director, La Sal Mountain Alliance, Castle Valley UT 84532

Encouraging clustering, strict adherence to codes, and open dialog between our community members and our elected officials - our team has been successful in reducing hundreds of lots, acres and units that, had they been approved, would have had immense impacts on our open spaces, wild places, and valued community. These are just a handful of our recent accomplishments made possible because of you.. our members, our donors, our community, our Valley. Thank you.


When you donate to VARD during Tin Cup, you help protect the health of our unique community. And, while you may not always SEE where your money goes, you can always SEE the open spaces and wild places that would have been lost. You can SEE  the reasons why we all live here, and love Teton Valley, be protected by a deep-rooted team that cares an awful lot.


This is the Value of VARD.


With much gratitude, 

Niki, Anna, Emily, Alena & the VARD Board

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Niki Richards, Executive Director
(208) 354-1707
285 East Little Avenue
PO Box 1164
Driggs, ID 83422



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