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Waldo Canyon Fire Update

Although the Waldo Canyon fire continues to burn to the west of Colorado Springs, Garden of the Gods Club’s mandatory evacuation notice was lifted as of 8 pm last night, and we are in a pre-evacuation status once again. Until we are able to fully assess the situation and notify our staff–many of whom have had to evacuate from their own homes–all club facilities will remain closed, and events cancelled. We hope to provide you with an update within the next 24-48 hours.

In case of an emergency, you can call our main telephone number, 719.632.5541. During this transitional period, all club telephone lines are being forwarded to select staff members and the call center for Preferred Hotel Group, with which our Lodge is affiliated. Certain club email addresses remain non-operational, but we hope to have them up and running again soon. While we will do our best to respond to you as quickly as possible, we appreciate your patience and understanding during this crisis situation.

Several Members have inquired about the status of our annual 4th of July celebration. While our fireworks display has been cancelled per local authorities, we have not yet made a decision about whether or not to continue with the other festivities that we had planned. While this depends, in part, upon the progression of the fire and our access to the property, we also want to show respect to those who have faced major challenges during the last few days. We hope to make a final announcement by Monday evening.

We will keep you updated as we have more information to share. Thank you for again for your support of Garden of the Gods Club and for your patience during this unexpected disaster. Please continue to keep your fellow Members, Club employees, firefighters, and all Colorado Springs families affected by the Waldo Canyon fire in your thoughts and prayers.

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Golf Tip of the Week Video: Getting Properly Aligned

One of the most important fundamentals of golf is alignment.  Once you have developed a repeatable golf swing, 80-90 percent of your swing flaws will likely be related to directional error.  Today, Garden of the Gods Club Golf Director Gene Gabelmann, PGA, shows you how to line yourself up correctly with your target.  We hope this brief video demo helps you shave a few strokes off your golf game!

Thanks for watching.  To schedule a lesson with Gene or another Garden of the Gods Club golf professional, please call our Golf Shop at 719.636.2520.  To learn about golf memberships at Garden of the Gods Club,  contact Membership Director Tracey Kalata at 719.520.4980.  Happy golfing!


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From the Chef: Recipe for Grilled Marlin Sandwich

This summer, try a new twist on what to serve at your next BBQ. Wow your guests wi

Wow your guests with a creative recipe from Executive Chef Steven Weber

This summer, why not try a fresh twist on traditional BBQ cuisine? To help you do just that, here is a creative and delicious recipe from Garden of the Gods Club Executive Chef Steven Weber. We hope that this recipe wows your taste buds and your guests at your next backyard gathering. Enjoy!

Grilled Marlin Sandwich on Toasted Brioche Bun With Honeydew, Cantaloupe, and Serrano Salsa and Scallion-Cracked Pepper Cream Cheese

Serves 6


  • 6, 4-6 oz marlin or swordfish steaks
  • High smoke point oil for brushing the grill
  • ¼ cantaloupe
  • ¼ honeydew
  • 4 slices serrano or parma ham
  • 1 roasted red pepper
  • enough citrus marmalade or jam to help bind
  • 6 tbsp. cream cheese
  • 1 chopped green onion
  • cracked black pepper
  • brioche buns or your favorite buns
  • your favorite lettuce chiffonade


  1. Crisp the ham in the oven for a little while, and then chop into small pieces. Combine with the melons and the roasted pepper that you have diced into ¼” pieces. Finish with a little marmalade to help keep it together.
  2. Mix the cream cheese, chopped green onion, and the black pepper.
  3. Season the marlin steaks with salt and pepper and grill to medium on a very hot grill. Toast the buns and spread them with the cream cheese mixture. Put the chiffonade on the bottom bun. Next, put the marlin on top of that, with the melon salsa next. Finally, top it off with the other bun. Chef’s Note: I like mine with homemade potato chips, but any picnic side will do.

We hope that you enjoy this delicious recipe from our chef. We invite you to share your feedback–or your own favorite grilling recipe–by leaving a comment in the box below!

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Meet Garden of the Gods Club Personal Trainer Carrie Sokalski

The Sports Club at Garden of the Gods Club is pleased to welcome Carrie Sokalski, an NSCA-certified personal trainer, to the fitness team. Carrie is passionate about helping others to reach their fitness potential while also encouraging them to expand their goals and flourish in all areas of life. We recently had the opportunity to chat with Carrie about her drive to help others become fit. We invite you to follow along with our conversation below.

Carrie Sokalski, personal trainer at The Sports Club at GGC

Personal Trainer Carrie Sokalski

Garden of the Gods Club (GGC): Tell me a bit about your background and what inspired you to become a personal trainer.
Carrie Sokalski (CS): Although my first passion was art, I discovered a strong interest in fitness when I began working out at the age of 23. By the time I was 30, I thought about becoming a personal trainer but decided to become an entrepreneur [instead]. After the economy began to struggle, I decided to once again spend time working on my art, which led me to a career in life coaching. It was from this place that I decided to become a personal trainer.

GGC: Do you have any areas of expertise within the field of personal training?
CS: Yes. In addition to circuit training and developing the trunk and core, I also specialize in using the body weight with unilateral training. Put simply, this means that I use the body’s own weight as resistance while the client performs exercises with just one side of the body. Doing exercises with one side of the body forces the core to work harder. And, when it comes to getting fit, losing inches and fat is so much more important than focusing on the number on the scale. I love to help people get their focus off of that number on the scale.

I also focus on the importance of proper posture and structure. It’s important to me that my clients experience the tremendous benefits of proper posture, whether they’re 70 years old or 25 years old.

GGC: What are some of the activities/hobbies that you enjoy?
CS: I really enjoy doing 30 minutes of an intense physical activity, such as circuit training, the elliptical, or climbing an incline. I feel centered after intensely working out for 30 minutes. I also really enjoy traveling, four-wheeling, and creating organic, abstract art. My artwork is very colorful and swirly!

Another thing that I enjoy is eating for my blood type. I follow a diet created by Dr. D’Adamo, and I find that this works for me.

GGC: Do you have a personal fitness “philosophy?”
CS: Yes. I want to help people to realize that their obstacles are really opportunities to expand their goals and to flourish. It’s important to realize that being “fit” is about more than being physically healthy. Striking a balance between the mental, physical, and spiritual aspects of life is also important, and what this looks like varies from one person to another.

GGC: What is your advice for somebody who would like to get in shape for the first time, would like to get back in shape, or would like to take their fitness routine up a notch?
CS: To the person who would like to get in shape for the first time, I recommend seeking the guidance of a personal trainer. Not only does this provide basic knowledge about nutrition and fitness, but it also helps the person to feel secure and comfortable in what may be an uncomfortable environment. Working with a personal trainer also helps the person to figure out what types of activities work best for them.

For those who would like to get back in shape after time away, I would also recommend working with a personal trainer at first. This helps provide accountability to follow through with fitness plans. Once those endorphins start to kick in and muscle memory returns, those who haven’t worked out in a while will remember how great it feels to be active.

Finally, because the muscles do have memory, it’s critical for those who want to take their current fitness routine up a notch to regularly switch things up. Trying new, challenging activities can incorporate ancillary muscles that maybe haven’t been used for a while.

If you are in need of some fitness inspiration, or would like to challenge yourself to reach your full fitness potential, we encourage you to contact Carrie Sokalski directly at 719.432.6065 or info@livefromwithin.com.  To learn about sports memberships at Garden of the Gods Club, please contact Membership Director Tracey Kalata at 719.520.4980.

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Things to Do in Colorado Springs This Weekend: June 22-24, 2012

Happy “official” second day of summer!  I moved to Colorado Springs in June, and it’s one of my favorite months to live in this community.  In addition to sunshine and gorgeous temps, the month of June offers so much to do in the Colorado Springs area.  In addition to outdoor activities like golf, tennis, swimming, hiking, and biking, a wide variety of fun events are available in Colorado Springs–many of which are free or very inexpensive.  We scoured the local event listings, and our own membership event calendar, to bring you a few ideas for how to create amazing memories with your family this weekend.  Have fun, and don’t forget to share your photos with us on our Facebook page, especially if your weekend involves spending time here at the club.

    • PROCYCLING U.S. Grand Prix of Sprinting — Friday through Sunday, 7 pm, Memorial Park Velodrome.  The PROCYCLING Grand Prix of Sprinting is an International track cycling event on the USA Cycling National Track Calendar.  The focus of the Grand Prix are the fastest events in cycling – Sprint, Team Sprint, and Keirin.  Teams from Canada, Colombia, Germany, The Netherlands, Trinidad, Venezuela, Haiti, and the U.S. will be using the Grand Prix as the final tune-up event prior to the London Olympic Games.   Tickets are $10 per adult or $250 for a VIP table for 8.
    • Rock Fair:  49th Annual Pikes Peak Gem & Mineral Show — Friday through Sunday, 9 am to 4 pm, Western Museum of Mining & Industry.  You can find gold, crystals, and fossils! Start learning how at the Pikes Peak Gem & Mineral Show at the Western Museum of Mining & Industry (I-25 at Exit 156A, north of Colorado Springs, just east of the Air Force Academy). This family-friendly, all-ages event will feature: “how to prospect” lectures; gold panning; crystal, gem, and jewelry exhibits; and vendors. Enjoy three action-packed days of working engines and the thundering operation of the museum’s 1890s Stamp Mill Gold Refinery.  Tickets $5 per adult and $2 per child.

Biking can be a fun way to keep your family active.

  • Kids on Bikes Family Ride — Saturday, 11 am to 1 pm, America the Beautiful Park.  Have fun and keep your family active by riding together in the Kids on Bikes Family Ride. Everyone–all ages and abilities, kids or no kids–is welcome. Meet in America the Beautiful Park at 11 am near the south side of the park. The ride will go along the Pikes Peak Greenway for approximately one hour. You are welcome to turn back at any point or stay within the park boundaries.
  • Acacia Park Summer Concert Series — Saturday, 6-8 pm, Acacia Park (downtown Colorado Springs).  After a busy Saturday filled with chores and activities, head downtown to relax and unwind while enjoying an evening of live music in Acacia Park at the Acacia Park Summer Concert Series.  This awesome FREE concert will feature Grant Sabin (blues), El Toro (rock), and The Flumps (indie/folk/rock).
  • Teddy Bear Days — Saturday & Sunday, 10 am to 3 pm, Cheyenne Mountain Zoo.Join the grizzly bears and the Rocky Mountain Wild fun this summer during the 24th Annual Teddy Bear Days! Kids 12 and under who are accompanied by a teddy bear (or other stuffed animal) will get into the zoo for just $5.25. (Of course, zoo members are always free.) Plus they will enjoy special event activities, including a teddy bear clinic, face painting, and special bear grotto demonstrations and grizzly bear demonstrations.  Bears that stop in at the special teddy bear clinic, located in the Lodge at Moose Lake, will be provided with free “check-ups.” With tender loving care, volunteers will administer stitches, splints, and other necessary “medical” procedures to needy stuffed animals. Each bear’s weight, height, temperature, and overall condition will be officially recorded, and all bears will receive a signed certificate of “Beary Good Health,” along with a goodie back pack provided by Memorial Hospital for Children. So much fun it’ll be unbearable!
  • Sunday Brunch — Sunday, 11 am to 2 pm, Garden of the Gods Club dining room.  Garden of the Gods Club Members and Lodge guests are encouraged to join us for a delicious brunch featuring a wide assortment of breakfast, lunch, and dessert items in addition to breathtaking mountain views.  There’s nothing quite like enjoying a meal on our patio while gazing at Pikes Peak and Garden of the Gods.  The price is $29 per adult and $14 per child, and reservations are recommend; call 719.329.6901.
  • Mt. Cutler Family Hike — Sunday, 4 pm, Mt. Cutler Trail.  Members of Garden of the Gods Club are invited to join us for a beautiful, family-friendly hike this Sunday, June 24th, at 4 pm at Mount Cutler. All fitness levels are welcome! We will meet at the trailhead, and we will begin the hike at 4 pm sharp. For directions to the trailhead and trail info, please click here.

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