Students enjoy an Outward Bound trip in Desolation Canyon on the Green River. [Photo courtesy Outward Bound]

Outward Bound is holding a fund raising event this Friday at Eddie McStiff’s.

Proceeds from the night will go to scholarships for Moab teenagers to go on an Outward Bound course in either Utah or Colorado.

Outward Bound offers dozens of scholarships each year, however, this is the first time there has been a fundraiser event here in Moab specifically for Moab-area student scholarships.

“What we realized is that we needed to focus on developing this opportunity for Moab, because many locals may not have access to this type of opportunity. With the help of one of our course directors, Aram Reeves, we got the ball rolling last year and have hopes of growing capacity into the future,” said Chris Benson, Southwest program director for Outward Bound. “Aram has donated dozens of hours to this cause and has been indispensable in making it happen.”

Over thirty business have donated items for a silent auction, including fine art, gift certificates and outdoor gear. Attendees can also purchase a raffle ticket for a chance to win a set of brand new 14-foot Cataraft Tubes from Rocky Mountain Rafts or a scenic flight, courtesy of Red Tail Aviation.

The event is free and open to the public. Food and drink will be available to purchase from Eddie McStiff’s during the event.

Depending on how many applicants and how the fundraising goes, potential courses could include an 8-day rafting course in Utah or 24-day multi-element course that goes rafting in Utah and mountaineering in Colorado, Benson said.

“We are looking for need based applicants who are motivated to learn leadership skills, challenge themselves and want to explore the pristine and beautiful course areas the we are so lucky to have in our region,” Benson said.

Benson has worked with Outward Bound for nine years, serving in places from Alaska to Ecuador.

“Moab begin the most beautiful place in the world, of course. I think the Outward Bound programming we offer here is absolutely unique and incredibly diverse,” he said.

The course areas and activities are intended to provide a powerful medium for students to discover their own strength of character and their ability to lead.

“The most notable impression I get is that they have an increased sense of self confidence and a greater level of responsibility both in how they take care of themselves and how they view the world,” Benson said. “Many students discover that their true potential is much greater than they ever could have imagined.”