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Friday, January 18 , 2019, 4:28 am | Fair 55º


Santa Barbara Rock Gym Marks Its First Anniversary

Santa Barbara Rock Gym will be celebrating its first anniversary on Friday, exactly 12 months after opening its doors.

Since its grand opening, it has experienced tremendous growth, offering a place for both Santa Barbara climbing enthusiasts and casual climbers to either enhance or develop their skills.

“We’ve been amazed at how the local climbing community has embraced our gym, as well as the number of first-time climbers who come in and want to learn," owner Will Russ said. "Watching people develop a passion for climbing has been the most rewarding part of my job for the last year.”

Santa Barbara Rock Gym is dedicated to helping novice climbers gain confidence on the wall and places a strong emphasis on teaching correct climbing techniques and safety precautions. Starting with a foundation of these basic climbing fundamentals helps prevent injuries and ensures that everyone has a good time.

There are currently 20 employees, nine of whom are CWA- or AMGA-certified climbing instructors with several years of climbing experience. In addition to focusing on fundamentals of climbing, they provide a positive influence on children through a variety of after-school programs, summer camps and classes.

The anniversary party is a zero-waste event and will feature a raffle and silent auction with proceeds going to the Santa Barbara Marine Mammal Center. Attendees can bring their own utensils, cup and plate to get a free raffle ticket and help minimize waste. Raffle prizes have been donated by Patagonia, Yoga Soup, Mountain Air Sports and more.

— Mike McElhaney is a publicist representing Santa Barbara Rock Gym.

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