Words and Photos by Erin Garrovillas
To kick-off the new year, Sender One hosted a special meetup on January 3, facilitated by staff member Denise. This New Year’s Meetup was similar to the Monday Night Meetups, with a special addition – at the beginning, everyone was given a questionnaire to fill out. It prompted us to reflect on the past year – specifically, favorite climbing memories and what we learned about climbing. It also guided us to think about this upcoming year – what we want to improve, a big climbing goal for 2018, and how we can achieve it.
The meetup started with an icebreaker, each person introduced themselves and shared a climbing highlight from 2017. Then, everyone paired up for trust falls and a partner exercise where you stand back-to-back, link arms, and try to stand up at the same time. Then, came the raffle. A handful of lucky winners became the proud owners of beanies, chalk, and a climbing brush.
Denise offered to open the colorful, themed climbing area, Sender City. It’s designed with kids in mind, but still offers lots of fun for all ages. A few people opted to jump straight into rock climbing, while the rest of the group suited up for Sender City.The first partner challenge was to climb the cubes while holding your partner’s hand. It proved to be very difficult because the cubes shake, and you could only climb with one hand! We also tried the Trembling Towers, where you step on vertical beams that get higher and shakier! To make it more interesting, we challenged ourselves to close our eyes, and the group coached us through each step. It’s surprising how challenging it is to balance when you can’t see!
Another favorite activity was the Drop Slide. After donning a jumpsuit, you hold onto a bar, as it lifts you up the nearly vertical slide. When you’re ready, you let go and rush down the slide!
After everyone got their fill at Sender City, we moved onto top roping in the main climbing area. Pairing up for belays came natural after the icebreakers and fun climbs at Sender City. When we weren’t climbing, we got to know each other a little better. Overall, the New Year’s Meetup was a great way to kick-off the year, meet new climbing partners, and get involved in the climbing community here at Sender One.
Join us for the next Monday Night Meetup, hosted on the first and third Monday of the month at both LAX and SNA. The meet ups are always free with a day pass. Meet new friends, participate in fun activities, and win great raffle prizes. Hope to see you there!