As you may already be aware, April 22 is Earth Day. Unlike many of the new Hallmark holidays we have each year, this one seems a bit appropriate. April signifies the changing of the seasons, from winter to spring; new life abounds everywhere you look; from the splashes of green as the grass begins to grow, to the new born calves and other livestock you can see in the fields on highway 550 between Ouray and Ridgway Colorado. Therefore, what better time to celebrate the planet we live on and its "Ouray" of wonderful gifts?
Here at the Box Canyon Lodge & Hot Springs, we try to think of creative ways to reward our guests for being green in their daily lives. This year, we are offering a free night stay on Earth Day, to guests who drive a hybrid vehicle. We are also very proud of all of our work this past year to reduce our carbon footprint. Granted, we aren’t perfect yet, but every little bit is a step in the right direction. Not to mention, a lot of the things we are working on to make the property more green just make sense.
Over the last year, we replaced all of our windows and most of our guest room doors. Now in winter and summer, our guest rooms are more insulated, providing a more constant temperature for our guests, reducing the amount of adjustment necessary on the thermostats to be comfortable, which in turn, reduces consumption and cost. As always, we used a local company to install the doors and windows for us. Consequently, we received exemplary service, and should say, should a window get broken, we can have it replaced quickly, without having to wait for the glass to be shipped from far off lands. Again, this saves time and money in addition to creating a positive professional relationship, and reducing the amount of fuel used to provide these services to us.
We just finished recarpeting all of our guest rooms. Now, this may not seem like a green initiative, however, in addition to removing a buildup of allergens in the floors, we are also providing another form of insulation to each guest room, again reducing the need to adjust thermostats as frequently. We chose a carpet that was rated as "Green Label Plus" by the Carpet and Rug Institute too. Of course, it looks really nice too.
We replaced all of our light fixtures this winter as well. By replacing the older models with more energy efficient fixtures and bulbs, we reduce the electricity consumed daily to light walkways and the rest of the property. The old fixtures were recycled, as was the old carpet (what was salvageable), and windows; all of which were sent to Habitat for Humanity to be re-used.
Long story short, it pays in more ways than one to do what you can to protect the environment. Sometimes, it may seem like a little bit more work, but once it becomes a habit, recycling and conserving energy quickly becomes second nature.
Happy Earth Day Everyone!