By Brianne Dela Cruz, Gather & Grow
For the Barebones’ office team, our dreams of summer camp became a reality at our first annual employee retreat in July. The whole staff took a few days off work to sleep under the stars, roast s'mores around the fire, and blow off steam with engaging camp activities.
Barebones has grown over recent years. From the start of the pandemic until now, our staff and workload have nearly doubled. We have been working hard together, and now that it is safer to gather again, we decided to reward ourselves by creating a company summer camp. This event was a much-needed break and an opportunity to strengthen our relationships.
An hour’s drive into the mountains from our offices in the Salt Lake Valley lies Tifie Preserve, our Founder Robert Workman’s property. The grounds include a working farm and orchard (run by Robert and his son Stephen), an amphitheater, archery grounds, dining pavilions, a fully furnished lodge, and sprawling glamping pads. Of course, a scenic destination like this wouldn’t be complete without a river running through it.
Tifie Preserve was the perfect destination to host our company camp.
We spent our hot days engaged in playful and educational workshops. Tory, from the marketing department led a creative bandana dying class using natural pigments. Robert taught us the art of archery. Jared, our VP of Product Design, led an exhilarating hatchet-throwing game.
Mindy, on the marketing team, taught a relaxing morning yoga class near the river. Stephen, the Tifie Farm Manager and Mountain Man Flower Farmer, gave us a tour of the garden grounds, offering tips on chicken husbandry and flower farming. I was personally honored to lead a foraging class and teach folks how to make a first aid yarrow salve.
We were lucky to enjoy home-cooked meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner crafted by three lovely women in our work family. A delicious kabob dinner was expertly grilled on the Cowboy Grills by Robert and his son Erik, who works in sales.
To stave off the heat a massive water fight broke out that spared not a single sweaty soul.
All the while, live music by Goodnight Richard boomed from the speaker, which had humans and goats alike rocking out. (We are proud to admit that a band member happens to be the husband of our VP of Marketing, Jessica.)
As twilight set in, we took to the campfire to roast s’mores
and enjoy each other's company for the remainder of Camp Barebones.
Around the office, you’ll often hear Robert say that Barebones is a family business. It's true. A handful of his family members help make our company what it is today. But that saying also has a double meaning that alludes to the quality of our culture and just how much every single employee contributes and matters. It doesn’t end there. The families of our employees also play an important role in how we function as a business.
Although half of our staff is relatively new, we all get along so well. We enjoy collaborating in the office as we work together to make the world a better place through this business. Out of the office, it’s no different: smiles, jokes, and good conversation abound. This company retreat was no stuffy affair; it was a treat for everyone involved.
⋯ We can’t wait for next year! ⋯
Brianne Dela Cruz is a master gardener, wild forager, campfire foodie, and acclaimed writer and photographer. From her home in Salt Lake City, she teaches online gardening and foraging courses for modern folks and budding naturalists as well as hosts seasonal community gatherings. Brianne's blog and online school, Gather & Grow, is a community of folks exploring the intersection between nature and personal growth by discovering ways to slow down and nourish themselves with nature.