After a two-year hiatus, the La Plata County Search and Rescue Pancake Breakfast was back Sunday with a whopping turnout of over 600 people.
The Snowdown tradition that began in 1985 was put on hold during the COVID-19 pandemic. But it was reignited this year to bring community members together to share a meal at the La Plata County Exhibit Hall. For Search and Rescue, proceeds from the event help pay for training, equipment and vehicle fuel.
As of 11 a.m. Sunday, Search and Rescue had received about $2,500 in donations in addition to the proceeds collected from the price of admission.
Search and Rescue members were serving up raspberry pancakes with eggs and ham along with hosting a silent auction.
Items entered into the silent auction were donated by Durango businesses to help Search and Rescue raise money. Some of the big ticket items were a fly reel and rod set from San Juan Anglers, a smart Bluetooth speaker from Louisa’s Electronics and two three-day tickets to Purgatory Resort.
“We're just thrilled to be back in front of the community visiting and catching up, because Search and Rescue is all volunteers,” said La Plata County Search and Rescue President Ron Corkish. “You rely on that community to help us with different things.”
Corkish said the event is a great way to network with other members in the community. Search and Rescue often relies on resources from partners in the community, and getting to know those partners can help in times of emergency.
For example, if a fire is threatening a ranch and someone needs a safe place to store horses, it helps to know who might be willing to help out in such a situation, he said. Hosting the pancake breakfast allows members of Search and Rescue to get to know those potential partners.
“Who can I call that has a pasture where I could set up 50 horses until this situation passes?” Corkish said. “It's these people right here who we serve breakfast to that are the people who would say, ‘Well, yeah, somebody could bring their travel trailer and put it on my property.’”