“Picnic in the Pines” at Benet Hill Monastery


A day of fun for the whole family is planned for Saturday, July 20 at Benet Hill Monastery and Benedictine Spirituality Center in The Pines. From 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. the monastery grounds will come alive to welcome the community and celebrate summer at the fourth annual “Picnic in the Pines.”

Benet Hill Monastery is located in a wonderful cool forest setting in the Black Forest area at 3190 Benet Lane in the northeast corridor of Colorado Springs.

According to Clare Carr, OSB, Prioress, other than minor smoke damage, the monastery did not succumb to the recent devastating Black Forest Fire which damaged over 500 homes and nearly 15,000 acres.

“We are truly blessed to have survived this tragic fire and are able to go ahead with this summer’s Picnic in the Pines,” said Carr. “It is our way to celebrate summer, honor Christ and bless the new beginnings for our neighbors in the Black Forest who were touched by the fire.”

A portion of the proceeds from the Picnic in the Pines will be given to assist the victims of the Black Forest Fire, said Carr. The firefighters and their families from Black Forest and Tri-Lakes will be special honored guests for the day.

According to Sr. Rose Ann Barmann, the Monastery’s Development Director, “For the fourth year, this family centered event will offer even more fun, fellowship and entertainment for kids and adults of all ages.”

“With all-you-can-eat BBQ, beer and other beverages, Picnic in the Pines promises to be a great day in our magnificent woodland setting,” Barmann said.

Entertainment ranges from music by Sunnyside Up Brass Band, a scavenger hunt in the Ministry Center, football toss with former NFL Bronco Randy Gradishar. There will be games for all ages including face painting, a wishing well, bounce house, pony rides and a petting zoo. Other attractions include spinning of alpaca wool and the opportunity to get close up to raptors, owls and eagles. Channel 13’s Jon Karroll will again emcee the event. There will be plenty of free parking and shuttles.

Raffle tickets will be available prior to and during the event with prizes including a week’s stay at a luxury condo in Costa Rica, a Rocky Mountain getaway at Grand Lake, Golf Package, Bronco tickets, Sky Sox tickets in Sky Box and other wonderful prizes.

Event Chairperson Bliss Krucas stated that Picnic in the Pines will also showcase Benet Hill’s beautiful facilities and the good works provided for the community. Said Krucas, “Funds raised through this event will not only help the victims of the Black Forest fire, but will also provide much-needed support for the important programs and services provided by the ministries of Benet Hill.” Ministry program tours and demonstrations will also be offered.

Along with Chairpersons Sr. Rose Ann Barmann and Bliss Krucas, the Picnic in the Pines committee includes Julie Armstrong, Cindy Costanza, Joan Klein, Patty O’Halloran, Jennifer Miller, Ernie Romero, Jeff Rugis, Mary Ann Stadjuhar and Gene Tourville.

The community is welcome and invited to attend Picnic in the Pines. Admission and Raffle tickets may be purchased online at www.benethillmonastery.org or by calling (719) 633-0655. Ticket prices range from $25 for individuals to $100 for an entire family residing in the same household. Children under the age of five will be admitted free. Active duty military will receive a 20% discount.


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