Pathways Spiritual Sanctuary Act of Excellence

Pathways Spiritual Sanctuary

In a time of heated conversations in a noisy world, a Black Hills couple has created a sanctuary where visitors can escape the contentious world and simply take in the natural landscape of the Black Hills. Dave and Jan Snyder established Pathways Spiritual Sanctuary, a serene spot on 80 acres of aspen trees, murmuring brooks and pastoral meadows. It’s a place where people can reconnect with nature and find time to quietly reflect on the world and their place in it. The mission statement of Pathways says the purpose is” To create a quiet, safe, sacred place open to the public where people can spend time walking, sitting, contemplating, reading, writing, reflecting or healing in the natural landscape of the sacred Black Hills, and to preserve and maintain this space for all who visit, without regard to their beliefs, race, religion, culture, personal history or life experiences.’’

Strider – a bike without pedals Act of Excellence

Strider Bikes, CEO Ryan McFarland and his parents Joe & Sandra 

Balance and steering are the most difficult things to learn about riding a bicycle, Ryan McFarland of Rapid City believes. That’s why, when his son was about to learn to ride a bike, McFarland invented the Strider No-Pedal Balance Bike. Its simplicity makes it easy to learn to ride, and that builds confidence in a young rider, eliminating fear and confusion. The young rider propels himself with his feet, which eliminates the need to worry about learning to pedal while learning the techniques of balance and leaning. Strider Bikes observed its 10th anniversary in business this year, still headquartered in Rapid City but selling its bicycles all over the globe.

Wheel Chairs for Third World Countries: Act of Excellence

Wheel Chair Test Lab SDSMT

A group of students at the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology are working with an international charity to develop a test laboratory aimed at making it possible to build better wheelchairs more quickly to meet an underserved need globally.  The students are involved in a partnership with Free Wheelchair Mission, a world leader in providing mobility for people with disabilities, and with Rapid City-based RPM and Associates, Inc.

“The test lab is designed to propel wheelchairs over repeated obstacles while continuously monitoring stress, strain, accelerations, and temperature rise due to friction,’’ the release said. “The obstacles will be designed to simulate the same types of obstacles that wheelchair users encounter in developing world conditions.’’

Trophies Restored: Act of Excellence

Jim & Bob Phillips uncover and restore generations of trophies.

Lead High School Awardswo brothers, Jim and Bob Phillips, found a way to preserve a record of the accomplishments of generations of Lead-area school children by locating and restoring dozens of trophies and plaques for display in remodeled cases in the Deadwood Recreation Center.

Jim and Bob Phillips, both graduates of Lead High School worked together to restore more than 70 trophies for public display. Their work is a way to share a piece of the area’s history with visitors to the Rec Center, center director, as a connection to our history.’’