February 18. 2022
Photo by Kelly Kuntz
The NextGen Advisory Board cultivates future conservation leaders for our community by connecting young professionals to GVLT’s mission of trails and open space. They ensure that GVLT’s work remains relevant and meaningful for future generations. When the GVLT NextGen Advisory Board opened applications for new members last September, they were blown away by the number of applicants they received.
With space for less than 10 new members and over 60 applications, NextGen saw a need to bring together young professionals in the Gallatin Valley outside of the Advisory Board. Planning opportunities for younger community members to engage with GVLT through events and volunteering is a major part of NextGen’s mission. Thus, the NextGen STIR event series was born.
STIR is an acronym for “Socialize, Talk, Interact, & Remember.” Each month, one or two NextGen members will host a STIR event centered on a variety of topics or activities related to GVLT’s work. “These meet-ups will take many different styles and shapes,” said Hannah Van Wetter, NextGen Advisory Board Chair. “This month, we are hosting a casual Nordic ski on the Highland Glen loop, and in May we are going to host a ‘current-events-and-coffee’ chat at a local park or coffee shop.”
The events will be a great opportunity to meet new people, learn more about the work of GVLT, and have new conversations. Though these events were created to engage young adult community members, all ages are welcome to join in on the fun.
“We were inspired to help fill this need when we had so many people apply to join the NextGen board, seeking a greater connection and community in the Gallatin Valley,” said Hannah. “Our vision for this new event series was to create spaces and conversations where people can connect with our mission and with people who share values and interests.”
“We think NextGen is a great group to get this started, but we would love to see more organizations find ways to involve young people and new residents in the missions that make Bozeman and the Gallatin Valley such a great place to live!”