Sunday, February 12, 2012

Banks Family Reunion - Part I

Every few years, Nancy's side of the family gathers together for a Banks Family Reunion. The typical and beloved destination is June Lake. Many fond memories have been born there and it will always hold a special place in the hearts of the family. Over the years, the usual lodging that the family loves to stay in (Boulder Lodge) has really gone down hill. With so many little kids in the family now days, Boulder Lodge at June Lake was just not the right destination. While many were sad, especially Grandpa Banks, we had to decide upon a new destination. The winning spot: Jackson Hole, Wyoming!

I can remember going to Jackson Hole with my family when I was younger, and I remember absolutely loving it! I was thrilled. The only downside, I probably will never get to experience the special place that is June Lake. Only through stories.

The Banks Reunion, as with any Gruber trip, was very well organized. We were prepared with an itinerary before hand...which really comes in handy when looking back and blogging about that trip. We now begin the story of the Jackson Hole Banks Reunion!

Friday July 29
    Grandpa Banks, Alan, Steve, Annette, and Spencer arrive in Alpine

We started out the reunion with a bang, by lighting up some huge fireworks. This was especially exciting since this summer was the first summer Utah has legalized aerial fireworks. Jason and the family really took advantage!

Saturday July 30
    Drive to Jackson Hole
    Pick up Spencers from the Airport
    Check into Cowboy Village Resort
    Grocery Shopping
    Teton County Fair

The drive to Jackson Hole was beautiful and eventful. Even though the drive was over six hours, we accidentally left Uncle Alan at Arctic Circle, made a wrong turn, and almost ran out of gas, we could not get over the gorgeous nature that was surrounding us.

Hitting the road

The Cowboy Village Resort was a perfect place for us to stay. It was so cute. The resort was filled with mini-cabins. Each family had their own cabin to stay in, which included their own kitchen. We were given a "breakfast allowance" that we shopped for upon arriving. It made the week so easy and so perfect.

 First arriving and gathering at The Cowboy Village Resort
Sadly, it was raining...and the forecast told us nothing but rain for the whole week!

 Love this picture!

Now, I do have to take a minute to describe my experience at the Teton County Fair. Have you ever heard of Carnies??? Yeah, they are probably the most foul creatures on the earth! I had never been to a carnival run by scary! Just imagine the dirtiest nastiest people you can, add tobacco and missing teeth, and you're meeting a Carnie! It was down right scary. I didn't know if I could trust the safety of the rides if they were built and run by these people! I'm surprised we were brave enough to eat their food! We must have been literally starving! (It was disgusting food, by the way). I know these are terrible things to say about any living person, (or dead for the matter), but this is the sheer terror I experienced upon first witnessing the Carnies.

Spencer and I braving the "Ring of Fire"...I really thought I was going to die!

One of the Carnies...doesn't do the horror justice

Oliver and Karl

Yes, the Carnies keep their babies behind their booths in play pens!

Sunday July 31
    Lunch Picnic
    Family Time
    Nancy's Birthday Dinner Celebration

Happy Birthday Nancy!

We were so lucky to be able to rent out the Resort Pavilion for the first several days. It was perfect to have as a family gathering/hanging place, especially escaping the rain. 


The boys getting their fishing poles ready for Monday's fishing trip

Here's a glimpse at the chaos and utter joy!

Only in Jackson Hole for two days so far, and already loving it!

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