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Thanks to all who participated in our 2014 Banquet and Fundraiser.  Watch here for the 2015 date!

 
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Foundation & future
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BANQUET
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Ranch A Education Center
Beulah, Wyoming
(307) 643-3101
ranch.a.lodge@gmail.com

Foundation & Future

Ranch A Educational Center is comprised of approximately 645 acres with all of the historic structures included. Ranch A Educational Center is wholly owned by the state of Wyoming.  Under the supervision of the State Lands & Investments Board, Ranch A is leased to a private, non profit group called the Ranch A Restoration Foundation (RARF). This group is charged with maintaining the ranch as an educational facility. While the state owns the property and directs the management of it, there is currently no funding provided for day-to-day operation, maintenance, repairs, improvements, or expansion of the Ranch A Educational Center.

The first foundation meetings were held in January 1992.  Articles of Incorporation and By-Laws were adopted and filed in February 1992. South Dakota School of Mines & Technology had a 10-year lease of the facilities until 1996. RARF then took over the care and management of the buildings and grounds. The Lodge, Babcock House, and apartments are currently utilized for lodging and rental income to fund operations. Small improvements have been made to the kitchen and baths, and upgrades of electrical and plumbing systems have been accomplished. A sprinkler system has been installed, roofs have been replaced, and the exteriors of the Lodge, Caretaker’s Quarters, and Barn have been restored.  All renovations and repairs to the Lodge, Caretaker’s Quarters, and Barn must meet specific standards as they are part of the National Registry of Historic Places.   Funds secured from special state legislation restored the logs on the three main buildings. Four of the original cabins were remodeled by the US government during their tenure and are now rented for additional income.  The latest addition to the facility is high speed internet access.

The members of the Foundation elect a Board and the members of the Board elect officers.  This Board meets regularly to set policies and priorities, which are then implemented by the Resident Managers.  Members of the current Board include property owners of adjacent lands and individuals who have an interest in preserving this historic property.  Representatives of the South Dakota School of Mines & Technology and Black Hills State University serve on the Board.  Also included is a representative from the United States Forest Service. 
Future Plans & Public Participation
A long-term goal and dream is to see the fish hatchery lab and historic barn each converted to separate stand-alone centers.  Plans for converting the lab to classroom and dormitory use have been commissioned and await funding.
The barn is listed on the National Historic Register.  Converting it to classroom use could emphasize the existing interior structure, giving a picture of the luxury accommodations made for the  horses.  Restoration work has been done on the exterior of the barn to prevent deterioration.
The Sawtooth building is utilized for storage. Unique in construction, it is scheduled for some emergency restoration
The apartments were converted from the original cabins. Maintaining much of the original charm, they provide additional revenue for operating Ranch A Educational Center.

Contribution information

The Ranch A Restoration Foundation has several levels of membership.  Membership funds are currently used for day-to-day expenses.  While the Ranch A Facilities belong to the State of Wyoming and are under the supervision of the State Lands & Investments Board, there is no direct funding from the state to Ranch A.  Grants for renovations have been given, but operating expenses depend on the income from usage of the buildings and rent from the apartments, as well as Foundation Memberships.   Fund raising activities are necessary for generating operating expenses and for upkeep and small repairs.   Donations and memberships will be gratefully accepted.

ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP LEVELS

  • FOUNDATION $100.OO - $299.00
  • JUSO BROTHERS $300.00 - $999.00
  • MARLENE & FRANK SIMONS $1000.00 $4,999.00
  • MOLESWORTH $5,000.00 - $9,999.00
              (Includes 4 tickets to the Annual Fundraiser & Banquet)
  • ANNENBERG $10,000+
               (Includes a table for 8 for the Annual Fundraiser & Banquet)

TO SEND A DONATION, APPLY FOR MEMBERSHIP,OR REQUEST ADDITIONAL INFORMATION, CONTACT:
         RANCH A RESTORATION FOUNDATION
        PO Box 219
        Beulah, WY 82712
        307-643-3101 or 307-283-2162

Please make checks payable to:
         RARF
        P.O. Box 219
        Beulah, Wyoming 82712

RARF Membership Levels are named in honor of Individuals or Families
that have special significance for Ranch A

Juso Brothers
That the log buildings at Ranch A have remained in such good condition for so many years is testimony to the quality of the construction by the Juso brothers. Nels Juso taught his sons to build high-quality log structures. The six sons did not have access to power saws and modern tools. Double bladed axes and six-foot crosscut saws were used to down the trees, which were then peeled by hand with knives they had made themselves. The logs were taken to the building site, fitted by carving and shaping, hoisted and rolled into place.

Marlene & Frank Simons
In the 1990s, Wyoming State Representative Marlene Simons dedicated much of her energy to the project of preserving Ranch A for public use. She spearheaded the effort to have the federal government deed the property and buildings to the State of Wyoming. She convinced the legislators of Wyoming and South Dakota to lead this effort, and then convinced the reluctant Governor of Wyoming to accept the gift. When the legislation was passed, she had already organized the Ranch A Restoration Foundation to assume responsibility for developing and maintaining the grounds and buildings. She was supported and encouraged in all of her efforts by her husband Frank. In the opinion of many, without the work of Marlene and Frank, Ranch A might well be in private hands.

Molesworth
Thomas Molesworth didn't invent Western interior design, but he provided a strong theme that developed into an American Western style. His first major project was designing, selecting, and constructing the furnishings for the Ranch A Lodge.

Moses Annenberg
Ranch A gets the name from Moses Annenberg who purchased the property in November of 1927. Moses named his property Ranch A, and proceeded to purchase more land to the total of 2000 acres. He set crews at work to build the lodge, caretaker's residence, a barn, several guest cabins, a 10 mile long game fence to encircle the entire property, and two stone arches to mark the entrances to the property. He hired craftsmen who used old world techniques to do the building with the emphasis to be the showcase lodge.

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Q&A

  1. Who owns Ranch A?  Ranch A is owned by the state of Wyoming.
  2. Who runs Ranch A?  The Ranch A Restoration Foundation is entrusted with responsibility for running Ranch A.  Two resident managers have the authority to rent the facilities and carry out the policies and directions of the Foundation.
  3. Why must all users of Ranch A have an educational purpose?  Ranch A was deeded to the state of Wyoming by an act of the United States Legislature.  A condition of the transfer was that the facilities are to be used only for educational purposes.
  4. Why aren’t weddings allowed?  The official interpretation from the Wyoming Attorney General is that weddings aren’t educational, and would violate the terms of the deed.
  5. What restrictions are placed on users?  See House Rules
  6. Is there high-speed internet access?  Yes
  7. Will cell phones work?  No
  8. Are the grounds available for renters of the Lodge?  Yes
  9. What transportation is available to get to Ranch A?  This is rural Wyoming.  For the most part, you will need to provide your own transportation.  Air transportation will get you to Rapid City, SD or Gillette, WY and rental cars are available there. 
  10. Are camp fires allowed?  Only with permission of the resident Manager, and in the locale he designates.  Crook County may also have issued a ban on fires, which will be enforced.
  11. Why must we remove our boots before going in the Lodge?  To prevent damage to the historic wood floors in the Lodge.
  12. Is hunting allowed?  Only with a camera. 
  13. Is fishing allowed?  With a valid Wyoming License.
  14. Why do I see cows by the creek?  They are used for fuel reduction as a natural method of fire hazard prevention.
  15. What are the main groups that use  Ranch A?
    1. Business and Professional  Groups for Seminars, Staff Training, or Staff Retreats;
    2. Schools for Classes, Workshops or Small Conferences, Outdoor and/or Science Education;
    3. Writing or Arts groups for work sessions, conferences, or seminars
  16. What are the future plans for the Ranch A Educational Facilities? 
     A long-term goal and dream is to see the fish hatchery lab building and historic barn converted to separate stand-alone learning centers. Updates, restoration, and repairs need to be made to all of the buildings and the historic perimeter fences.  Heating and electrical systems are in particular need of work.  Discovery trails are planned to be built and designed for self-guided systems.

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