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Hope for Angry Teens: One Alumni’s Story

Pete admits “When I got to Rawhide, I was angry. Angry at the world, angry at society, and I was fighting the system.” Little did he know then that he would go on to be an ‘A’ student and letter in football after being mentored by none other than the legendary Bart Starr, NFL quarterback for the Green Bay Packers. And that was just the beginning of Pete’s second chance for a better life thanks to Rawhide and the dedicated people who help guys like Pete.

A Rocky Start in Life

Pete had spent a weekend in jail by the age of 11. By 12 years of age, he was in a gang. At 13 he had committed burglary. He was a self-described “parasite on society.” He knew he was smart and had leadership qualities but he was leading others and himself down a troubled path until he met John and Jan Gillespie, founders of Rawhide.

John Gillespie Sees Potential

Pete first came to Rawhide for summer Adventure camp. Shortly after leaving the week-long program, he landed back in jail for more bad choices. Authorities contacted John Gillespie to pick him up. Instead of sending Pete to a secured juvenile correctional facility, John brought Pete to Rawhide for the next four years.

“John Gillespie saw something in me and thought I had potential if I could just turn things around.”

Which Would You Rather Be?

John Gillespie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The early years at Rawhide weren’t easy.

“I’m stubborn. No one was going to force me to do anything unless I wanted to. No one was going to force me to do well in school or show up on a job if I dug in my heels. John and Jan knew that.”

John and Jan noticed how stubborn Pete was so they put it to him “flat out, plain and simple.”

“It’s up to you, Pete. Do you want to be a success, or do you want to be a loser? Which path do you choose?”

They knew that the only way Pete would change is if it were his decision. So they gave him the choice. Once Pete heard that it was up to him, he made his choice. He decided to actually read his school books and became an ‘A’ student. By the time he graduated from high school, he was the Senior Class President. Pete became a positive role model and used his natural leadership skills to lead the other guys.

Learning to Handle Strong Emotions

Pete was making progress but still had some trouble controlling his emotions. Remember that he arrived at Rawhide being angry at the world. That does not go away overnight. Legendary Bart Starr offered to mentor Pete in playing football if he was interested. Pete didn’t know much about football, but Bart took him under his wing, even bringing him to his very own Packers football camp. Bart Starr taught Pete the fine techniques of throwing a football and Pete learned how to channel his anger into energy on the field. Football gave Pete an outlet for his anger. He became a leader on the field and played both offense and defense. He went from a face in the crowd of angry teens to a football standout. Later on, he even earned a varsity letter!

“They Literally Saved My Life”

It was tough for Pete to leave Rawhide once he graduated from high school. Pete had grown to view everyone at Rawhide as family and Rawhide as a home.

“I grew up here. I was a child when I came here. Everything I needed to know, I learned at Rawhide. John and Jan Gillespie were the mom and dad I didn’t have. They were my family. They took me in, they trusted me, and they made me part of their family.”

“Leaving here was like leaving home.”

After graduating, Pete joined the Marine Corps. He got a meritorious promotion after boot camp and three more meritorious promotions for service above and beyond. Pete left the Marine Corps as a sergeant and went back to school, eventually finding a passion for electrical work. He is now a master electrician and enjoys the positive path he’s on.

Pete credits John and Jan with saving his life. If he were to come across them today, he would tell them:

“Thank you very much, John and Jan. I love you all. You’ve saved my life, more than once. Had it not been for John and Jan Gillespie, I would not be here today. They literally saved my life.”

You, Too, Can Save a Life and Help Angry Teens

John and Jan provided a home for Pete along with hundreds of other troubled youth over the years. If you would like to help continue the work, donate to Rawhide. We accept cars, trucks, motor homes, boats, cash, stock, life insurance, and other types of donations. Every charitable contribution gives troubled youth and families a second chance.


 

2015 US Auto Industry Sales Set New Record [INFOGRAPHIC]

In six years, the US auto industry went from a recession to an all-time sales record in 2015! The United States auto industry sold more cars and trucks in 2015 than ever before.  A total of 17,470,659 vehicles were sold in 2015, an increase of 5.7% compared to 2014 surpassing the previous record of 17.41 million vehicles set in 2000.

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2015 Auto Sales rise

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2015 US Auto Industry Sales Set New Record

What a difference six years can make. The US auto industry set record sales numbers in 2015 as a total of 17,470,659 vehicles were sold, an increase of 5.7% compared to 2014.  2015’s sales numbers surpassed the previous auto sales record of 17.41 million vehicles that was set in 2000. The record breaking sales are due to a variety of factors, and they look to continue into 2016, and even beyond.

First Six-Year Growth Streak Since WWII

US Auto Industry From Recession to Recovery to Record Sales

The six year growth streak is the auto industry’s first since World War II. The industry remained relatively steady after the previous high in sales in 2000, but dropped dramatically in the later half of 2008 and into 2009 due to a global-scale recession. During the recession, auto sales averaged around 10 million sales per year, but since 2009, U.S. auto sales of new cars and trucks have increased 68%.

What’s Behind this Phenomenal Auto Industry Growth?

The auto industry resurgence can be credited to lower gas prices, attractive incentives, and increased demand that doesn’t appear to be slowing down anytime soon.  During the recession, consumers held on to their used cars as a cost-cutting measure. Those cars are now six years older.

Incentives Sweetened as New Car Sales Prices Rose

In 2015, the average new vehicle was priced at $33,188, an increase of 20% since 2005 ($27,655). Increased customer interest in pickup trucks and small-to-midsize crossovers played a big part.

Increased sales price has also increased revenue for auto companies. An estimated $570 billion was made from auto sales in 2015.

Average new car sales price is expected to continue climbing in future years; 2008 was the only year since 1995 that the average price didn’t rise was 2008.

Although suggested new car retail price is at an all-time high, gross profit per car sale was down $250 in 2015. WHY? Auto industry incentives are to credit for this decline. Average industry incentives per vehicle rose 3.9% from December 2014 to December 2015, averaging $3,063 of savings for customers.

GMC provided one of the most popular incentives of 2015: zero percent financing on 2015 GMC Sierra 1500 for up to 72 months.

Leasing Vehicles Grew in Popularity

The rise in sales price has spawned a rise in leasing. Edmunds projects that leases will account for a record 29% of new United States auto sales for 2015, an increase of 2% from 2014. 10 years ago, leases accounted for 16.6% of auto sales.

Hyundai presented one of the most popular lease options for 2015, allowing customers to lease the 2015 Genesis for $370 a month over 36 months, requiring no down payment.

Domestic vs. Import: What Americans Preferred

An interesting trend has emerged for auto consumers. Consumers are more likely to purchase an imported car than a domestic brand. However, trucks are the reverse. Truck buyers are more likely to purchase a domestic truck than an imported one.

Cars:

  • 12.8% of new car sales were domestic
  • 31.5% of new car sales were imports

Trucks:

  • 32.5 % of new truck sales were domestic
  • 23.2% of new truck sales were imports

Overall, imports beat out domestic vehicles in 2015.

  • 45.3% of new auto sales were domestic
  • 54.7% of new auto sales were imports

The Big 5 Market Share

The Big 5 Market Share for the Auto Industry

General Motors, Ford, Chrysler, Toyota, and Honda accounted for 69% of new auto sales in 2015. As in 2014, General Motors led the way in 2015, closely followed by the other four major brands.

  • General Motors accounted for 17.6% of new auto sales in 2015
  • Ford accounted for 14.9% of new auto sales in 2015
  • Toyota accounted for 14.3% of new auto sales in 2015
  • Fiat-Chrysler accounted for 12.6% of new auto sales in 2015
  • Honda accounted for 9.1% of new auto sales in 2015

General Motors held the most market share, increasing sales by nearly 6% over 2014. Ford leapt over Toyota to finish with the second highest market share in 2015. Nissan motors gained the most out of all automakers with a 19% sales increase over 2014.

The Year of the SUV

“It was really the year of the SUV.” — Jessica Caldwell, Director of Industry Analysis for Edmunds.com

Increased popularity of the Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV), light duty truck, and cross-overs is a big reason for the new car market resurgence.

  • Light-duty truck sales totaled 9,729,587, up 13.1% from 2014
  • Car sales totaled 7,740,912, down 2.2% from 2014
  • Crossover sales totaled 4,551,632 up 18.5% from 2014
  • SUV sales totaled 1,706,273 up 10.7% from 2014

Car manufacturers have set their sights on the increased popularity of crossovers and have nearly doubled the number of crossover models in the past decade alone. If the North American International Auto Show is any indication, you can expect to see more crossover SUVs in 2016.

5 Top Sellers of 2015

Three pick-up trucks took the top sales spots for 2015, pacing two fuel efficient, midsize cars. The top 5 autos sold in 2015 were:

  1. Ford F-Series pick-up truck: Sold 780,354 units
  2. Chevy Silverado pick-up truck: Sold 600,544 units
  3. Dodge RAM pick-up truck: Sold 451,116 units
  4. Toyota Camry: Sold 429,355 units
  5. Honda Accord: Sold 355,557 units

Ford’s F-Series remained America’s best-selling pickup truck for the 39th consecutive year and the best-selling vehicle for 34 straight years. Toyota Motor Corporation’s midsize Camry was the best-selling car for the 14th consecutive year.

Ford Flexes It’s Muscles

The Ford Mustang has surpassed the Chevrolet Camaro as the best-selling muscle car of 2015.

  • Sales for the Ford Mustang jumped 48% from 2014
  • 122,349 Ford Mustangs were sold in 2015

This is the first time since 2009 that the Mustang outsold the Camaro, and the success can be attributed to increasing numbers of millennial age buyers. Both Ford and General Motors have been targeting younger buyers with updates to their classic cars such as modern interior features and coupling turbo charged engines with fuel efficiency.

A Close Race in Luxury

Consumers were split on luxury brands for 2015 as BMW paced the luxury field, but only sold approximately 3,000 more luxury units than the third place brand, Mercedes.

  • BMW sold 346,023 luxury units in 2015
  • Lexus sold 344,601 luxury units in 2015
  • Mercedes sold 343,088 luxury units in 2015

All three luxury brands, as well as Audi and Porsche, set annual U.S. sales records in 2015.

5 Factors Boosting Auto Industry Sales

Auto sales are up for a multitude of reasons.

  1. Lower gas prices
    The average U.S. gas price at the end of 2015 dropped to lowest since 2009, creating a strong demand for trucks and SUVs.
  2. Lower interest rates
    Many car dealerships are offering low interest rates on their vehicles including 0% financing options.
  3. More demand from public
    Many consumers are replacing older vehicles as current vehicles are on average 11 years older.
  4. Looser lending standards
  5. $3,063 average incentives per vehicle

3 Companies Lost Consumer Trust

While overall sales are up, trust is down for some companies.

  1. Volkswagen/Audi/Porsche (all manufactured by Volkswagen Group)
  2. Takata airbags
  3. TrueCar.com

Volkswagen, Audi, and Porsche were caught in a scandal involving diesel emissions. Software was placed in the vehicles that detected when they were being tested for emissions, changing the vehicle’s performance to improve results allowing for the vehicles to pass the test when they wouldn’t have otherwise.

Takata airbags featured a dangerous flaw for many customers. During an accident, Takata airbags inflated with so much force that they unleashed shrapnel into the vehicle. The airbags turned into one of the most widespread safety recalls in U.S. auto history, covering 23 million airbag inflators across 19 million vehicles produced through 12 car companies. The airbags are linked to 9 deaths and over 100 injuries. All deaths occurred in Honda vehicles.

The website TrueCar.com provided a promising website for car dealers and buyers. TrueCar provided customers with pricing transparency while providing auto dealerships with a cheap and easy way to close sales. In July, the stock plummeted 40% in one day as the company admitted that they were failing to turn web prospects into sales.

A Promising Road Ahead

The increase in auto sales is expected to continue into 2016. Total auto sales for 2016 are projected to range around 17.5-18 million as Americans will look to continue purchasing family friendly vehicles like cross-overs and SUVs. “We expect to see a second consecutive year of record industry sales in 2016,” GM Chief Economist Mustafa Mohatarem said in a statement.

eBay Purchase Turns Business Dream into Reality

Have you heard the saying “One man’s truck donation is another man’s business dream”? No? Well, meet the Canuck Pizza Truck! The Canuck Pizza Truck is a business endeavor conceived by Ted Lafleur and his family from Ottawa, Canada. All they needed was the right truck, and they found it on Rawhide’s eBay store. Another person donated the truck to Rawhide which was then auctioned off on eBay. Ted bid on the truck and won!

He remodeled the truck, equipped it with an authentic Italian pizza oven, and spends sunny, summer days feeding happy customers. The Canuck Pizza Truck is the only pizza truck roaming Canada.

“You’re Not a French Fry Guy”

Ted dreamed of owning a food truck. He originally intended to build a french fry wagon, but when he found a pizza truck, he fell in love. Ted’s brother told him: “Ted, you’re not a french fry guy. You’re a pizza guy. Don’t fight it.” Ted listened.

Ted began researching successful pizza truck businesses. He reached out to a few, and they helped him develop a business plan. With a plan in place, all Ted needed was a truck.

The Hunt for the Canuck Pizza Truck

Ted called Vintage Truck Magazine and asked if they knew where he could find an appropriate vehicle. They directed him to a variety of websites, including Rawhide’s eBay store. Rawhide auctions off donated collectible, vintage, and classic vehicles on eBay. And as luck would have it, Ted found the perfect truck for the job on Rawhide’s store: a 1946 Chevy Stovebolt.

Ted was impressed with his Rawhide eBay purchase for a variety of reasons:

  1. Rawhide took great pictures of the vehicle from all angles, allowing him to make a decision without seeing the truck in person
  2. Rawhide employees were knowledgeable about the truck and were excited for him
  3. The truck was in great condition and came with an inspection report
  4. The price was right
  5. Rawhide customer service is excellent and made the entire process easy

Once Ted completed the purchase, the truck was shipped via New Jersey to Ontario.

eBay Purchase Fulfills a Business Dream

eBay Purchase Canuck Pizza Truck

Turning a vintage vehicle into a fully operational pizza food truck took some work. Ted discovered that a friend’s neighbor had the right skill set, and they set about repairing the frame.

Once the frame was reinforced, Ted ordered an authentic Italian pizza oven straight from Italy. In order to enlarge the truck body to house the oven and provide work space, Ted and the renovation team placed the oven on an axle and built around it. Once everything was complete, it was time to sell some pizza!

eBay Purchase Canuck Pizza Truck Driving

 

Pizza Treatza!

Watch the food truck team in action, baking pizzas in an authentic Italian brick oven!

Ted’s wants each visitor to enjoy their experience, so they use the freshest ingredients, homemade sauce, and hand-tossed crusts.  They specialize in gourmet pizzas such as:

  • Meatza
  • Canadian
  • Greek
  • Maui
  • Broccoli, Red Pepper & Asiago
  • Artichoke & Black Olive
  • Perogy (Potato, caramelized onion, bacon)
  • Smoked Gouda & Salami
  • Margherita
  • Fungi Amore

They even take requests!

The Art of Cooking with Italian Pizza Ovens

eBay Purchase Baking Canuck Pizza Truck

 

Ted admits it took a while to get the pizzas perfect when using a 900 degree oven. A lady who grew up cooking pizzas in Italy using a similar oven happened to visit the truck. When Ted relayed a problem he was having, she advised moving the fire closer to the pizza. Problem solved. Soon, perfectly cooked pizzas were served!

For Ted, the best thing about the Canuck Pizza Truck is how it brings his family together and the excitement people have when they see the truck. Whenever the Canuck Pizza Truck is cooking pizza, it’s almost always a family affair and people always notice the truck. It’s even created many return customers! “People are intrigued by it and that’s what makes it fun!”

 

eBay Purchase Canuck Pizza Truck Baking

Find Your Inspiration at Rawhide

Rawhide’s eBay site helped get the wheels rolling for the Canuck Pizza Truck and might be just the thing to help kick-start your small business idea. Check out some of our vehicles up for auction. Maybe you’ll find your very own eBay purchase that inspires your new revenue stream for 2016.


 

U.S. Auto Sales on the Rise with Online Buying [INFOGRAPHIC]

Auto sales in the United States have risen recently. 54 million new and used cars, trucks, and crossovers were sold in 2014, accounting for $1.1 trillion in sales. Total sales are expected to jump to $3 trillion by the end of the decade, but where are sales coming from? Enter a new car buying venue: the internet! Car buyers are abandoning trips to various dealerships and choosing instead to research and even buy cars online, causing dealerships to change sales tactics to accommodate new demands of car shoppers.

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US Auto Sales online car buying

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U.S. Auto Sales on the Rise with Online Buying

United States car sales have recently risen, accounting for $1.1 trillion in sales during 2014. Car sales are expected to reach $3 trillion by the end of the decade, but where are customers buying cars from? What if we told you consumers are now choosing to forego the traditional car buying process and buying cars online instead.  Negotiating with car dealers and calculating how much car they can afford has caused car buyers to change the way they purchase their car. In turn, car dealerships are making changes as well, building more responsive websites, devoting online sales staff to 24/7 customer support, and keeping inventory that consumers want.

Consumers Unhappy With Traditional Car Buying Process

Consumers are moving away from the traditional car buying process  to avoid pains of the process:

  • 38% don’t like negotiating with a dealer
  • 13% don’t like signing loan paperwork
  • 11% don’t like calculating what they can afford

Some car buyers claim they’d give up their favorite luxuries for a week to avoid haggling over price:

  • 42% would give up social media
  • 42% would give up dessert
  • 38% would give up coffee
  • 18% would give up their smartphone

To avoid the less pleasant aspects of car buying, customers are going online and taking control of the car buying process.

  • 72% want to complete the credit application and financing paperwork online
  • 56% want to start the negotiation on their own terms online
  • 45% want to remain anonymous until they are locked into the deal structure

Online Car Buying Streamlines Process

Turning to the internet is helping car buyers streamline the process.

  • 97% of buyers research their car purchase online
  • Consumers spend an average of 19 hours online to research before buying

When car buyers finish their research, they visit car retailers an average of 1.4 times before completing a purchase, a drop from the average of four visits in 1998.

Mobile is a Key Piece for Auto Sales

Instead of driving from lot to lot to gather information about vehicles, potential car buyers are taking advantage of the wealth of information at their fingertips. 41% of all online automotive sales activity takes place on mobile devices, eight times higher than 3 years ago. Car buyers are utilizing mobile devices for timely answers to pertinent questions such as price and vehicle specifications to ensure they can trust the retailer. Two different mobile platforms are utilized during initial car buying research:

  • 34% of mobile ads initiate car buying research
  • 34% of tablet ads initiate car buying research

5 Areas Online Car Buyers Research Most

Online car buyers are focusing research on five main areas:

  1. Price – Consumers compare prices from dealerships to make sure they’re getting the best price and are ensured top resale value.
  2. Specs – Consumers look at miles per gallon, acceleration, 0-60 rate, turn radius, handling, and performance in crash and safety tests.
  3. Finance – 72% want to complete the credit application and financing paperwork online.
  4. Value – Consumers read about customer satisfaction, other customer’s reviews, and if a vehicle was nominated for any awards. Consumers will also analyze how one vehicle compares to similar models.
  5. Sales – Brand, model, and dealership reputation is taken into consideration as well as the sales process, financing, and warranty involved.

The wealth of research being done online is causing car buyers to become less attached to the dealer and more attached to the best deal.

Where Are Buyers Getting Information?

80% of prospective car buyers compare prices and cars from an average of 10 online dealerships. They may also check car manufacturers’ websites. Car buyers visit third party sites like:

Online car buyers also rely on specific content from dealers and manufacturers.

  • 38% of consumers look at automotive blogs/publications
  • 36% of consumers visit the manufacturer’s website
  • 32% of consumers visit dealer websites
  • 32% of consumers rely on social media

More Consumers are Completing the Entire Car Buying Process Online

Some car consumers are skipping the trip to the car dealership altogether and completing the entire purchase online. 16% of consumers have bought a car online and 75% of buyers would consider going through the entire car purchase online. This includes:

  • Financing
  • Price negotiation
  • Paperwork
  • Home delivery

While 56% of customers say they would miss test driving a car before they buy, the pros of completing a car purchase online outweigh the cons of buying a car in person for some.

Who are the Buyers?

The average car buyer who completes the entire car buying process online:

  • Has an average income of $96,000
  • Has an age range of 18-34

Price isn’t the deciding factor for individuals buying cars online. 63% of online car buyers say the car must be the right fit for them rather than the most financially sound.

Car Buyers Arrive Ready to Buy

If a car buyer chooses to buy from a dealership in person, 66% of buyers arrive knowing the exact car or truck they want, changing how car dealerships handle customers. To meet customer demands, dealerships have committed to:

  • Responsive websites
  • Dedicated 24/7 online sales staff
  • Online sales prices
  • Inventory consumers want

Online sellers are even offering guaranteed condition, warranties, and no-haggle return policies that meet or exceed auto industry standards.

Dealerships are also finding they must have the right inventory. If dealers don’t have the exact model with the right options, the customer may buy elsewhere due to convenience.

Customers also expect to be able to test drive a car when they want. 67% of all respondents expect a confirmation within eight hours of sending a request for a test drive.

Major Brands are Catching On

BMW recognized the change in the car buying industry and became the first major brand to modernize their process. BMW Sales and Marketing Chief, Ian Robertson said “We are the first car manufacturer to offer a digital sales solution for the entire product range and the full end-to-end buying or leasing process online. Now, the customer can do it all from the comfort of their home.”

Volvo followed suit and decided to make the first edition of its XC90 model available only online. 1927 cars were sold within the first 48 hours of the release, an average of over 40 cars an hour.

Offline Still Matters

Many car buyers still prefer face-to-face interaction and are apprehensive to complete a car purchase online. Security is the main reason customers are hesitant. Others feel they would miss aspects of the traditional car buying experience.

  • 88% say they would not buy a car without test driving it first
  • 47% prefer to review a model in person
  • 42% say they would miss negotiating with a salesman

While a strong online presence is important, the in-store experience is crucial as well. Hyundai CEO John Krafcik believes that staying on the cutting edge and embracing trends is the key to making the overall car buying experience better.


 

Bart Starr’s Birthday: 15 Reasons to Celebrate

We can list a hundred reasons to celebrate Bart Starr on his 82nd birthday, January 9, 2016, most of which are off-field. For brevity’s sake, however, number 15 has worked for him before (his Packers jersey number), so why mess with success?

Throughout the decades, he has impacted lives and inspired many. In celebration of Bart Starr’s birthday we dug through our archives and found fun facts to share. Some facts you may know, others you may not.

1. 1950s TV Ad: No Greasy Kid Stuff for Bart

Early in Bart Starr’s career, he did TV commercials for Vitalis Hair Tonic. A competing product was known to leave men’s hair feeling and looking ‘greasy.’ So Vitalis launched a campaign with the slogan “Are you still using that greasy kid stuff?” featuring Bart Starr. In the video clip below, Bart coaches Sam Wade, an actor, in men’s hair grooming.

2. Bart Starr Line of Athletic Shoes

Starr’s first major endorsement was from the La Crosse Rubber Mills. The company made a special line of Bart Starr athletic shoes in the 1960s-70s.

Bart Starr's Birthday fun fact: Bart's own Line of Athletic Shoes

Photo courtesy of: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/402016704207946105/

3. TV Ad: Bart through the Looking Glass?

Rawhide has occupied a huge space in Bart’s heart, and he has always been honored to leverage his celebrity status to help the ranch raise funds.

Check out this TV commercial Bart did for Rawhide.

4. Milwaukee Journalist Hitched Rides with Bart as a Kid

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel writer, George Stanley, recently wrote a thank you letter to Bart Starr. Bart used to see George walking home after his school’s football practice and offered George a ride home to ensure his safety. Bart had just left football practice as well, but went out of his way to make sure George got home safe.

5. Bart Invited Rawhide Founders to Dinner Without Knowing Them

When John and Jan Gillespie, Rawhide founders, were trying to get Rawhide off the ground, they picked up the phone book to find Bart’s number. They had no prior interaction with Bart, so they dialed and prayed. Bart answered the phone.

Ten minutes into the conversation, Bart and Cherry invited them to dinner and offered to help raise funds and awareness for Rawhide. The Starr’s have offered Rawhide support ever since and have been instrumental in Rawhide’s success helping at-risk and troubled youth and families.

Rawhide founders

6. Bart Still Holds Unbroken NFL Records

Bart’s nine post-season victories in a row and 90% post-season winning percentage are still NFL records. Bart is also the highest rated playoff passer in NFL history.

When Bart retired he held the record for highest career completion percentage. Many believe that Bart could have played well in any decade of the NFL and that his style would make him a great quarterback, even today.

7. Bart Helped Start the Chalk Talk

Bart has remained an active supporter of Rawhide since he and Cherry invited the Gillespies to dinner over 50 years ago. In 2013, Hall of Fame Quarterback, Steve Young, asked Bart how he could help, so the two came up with the Chalk Talk Luncheon. The first Chalk Talk was held that year, and Hall of Fame running back Paul Hornung made a surprise appearance! The event has been held every year since, and the 2015 Chalk Talk brought in over 1,500 guests!

Paul Hornung with Bart Starr

8. Wisconsin Governor Makes Two Official 2015 Proclamations

  • Favre-Rodgers-Starr Day, 4-12-15, (April 12, 2015)
    Officially proclaimed by the Governor “in honor of The NFL’s Most Victorious Quarterback Trio Ever, recognizing Brett Favre #4, Aaron Rodgers #12 and Bart Starr #15 as having achieved league leading success in the NFL with the Green Bay Packers respectively during their careers.”
  • Bart Starr Week, Nov. 1-7
    Governor Scott Walker proclaimed November 1-7 as Bart Starr Week throughout Wisconsin. The week honors all of Bart’s contributions to Wisconsin on and off the field.

9. Bart and Cherry Starr Received Key to the City of Green Bay

Green Bay Mayor Jim Schmitt presented Cherry with a key to the city for both her and Bart, for their significant contributions to the community over the years.

10. NFL Names Bart as 8th Most “Clutch” Quarterback

Bart Starr led the packers to 19 fourth quarter comebacks and 18 game winning drives.

Clutch quarterback Bart Starr

Bart was at his best in the playoffs, going 9-1 in his career and winning five championships including two Super Bowls. In one of the most memorable games in NFL history, Bart Starr threw for 191 yards and two touchdowns… with frostbitten fingers.

Bart ended the Ice Bowl with one of the most memorable plays in football history.

11. Bart’s Home Office Displays Charity Work, Not Sports Accomplishments

Cherry Starr often tells a story regarding a younger relative stopping by and asking Bart if he’s famous. The relative found out in school that Bart played in the NFL but never knew because Bart’s office isn’t decorated with sports accomplishments, rather with pictures of Rawhide guys and other charity events.

12. Bart Starr Donated MVP Corvette for Rawhide Fundraiser

Bart Starr MVP Corvette

Bart won the Most Valuable Player award for Super Bowl II and with it came a brand new Corvette. Instead of keeping it, Bart donated it to Rawhide for a raffle fundraiser. 40,000 people bought a $1 ticket, helping provide fundraising for Rawhide’s early stages.

13. Bart Encouraged Other Packers to Support Rawhide

Bart had just won the 1966 NFL’s Most Valuable Player award and wanted to leverage this honor to help Rawhide. He convinced his teammate, Fuzzy Thurston, to hold a fundraiser at his Left Guard Charcoal House. Bart also convinced 15 other players to join in. It reads like a list of who’s who:

The fundraiser helped raise awareness and necessary funds to keep Rawhide operational for troubled youth and families.

14. Bart Made His 2015 Return to Lambeau Field about Brett Favre

After some 2014 health challenges, Bart worked hard to recover so that he could walk onto Lambeau field for Brett Favre’s jersey retirement. Bart did return for this ceremony and gave Brett a big bear hug on the field. Bart’s wife Cherry even shared something not many heard:

“…I don’t know if you all could see this, but when he got off the cart and Brett walked over, Bart looked at him and said, ‘I love you Brett’ and Brett looked down and said ‘I love you too Bart’, and hugged him so sweetly…” – Cherry Starr, November 2015

15. Bart Remains a Loyal Packer Throughout the Decades

Bart played 17 seasons with the Packers for a then franchise-record 196 games. After Bart retired from playing, the Los Angeles Rams offered him a coaching job. Bart turned it down, hoping the Packers would offer him a coaching job, which they did shortly after.

Bart has stayed active with the Packers since stepping away from football. He still calls current and former players to offer support when they are going through difficult situations. When Eddie Lacy was drafted by the Packers, Bart Starr was one of the first people to call and congratulate him

These are just some of the many reasons why we love Bart Starr!

Please wish Bart a happy 82nd birthday and share some of the reasons why you love Bart in the comments section below!


 

Rawhide Alumnus Shares Life-Changing Story

Rawhide alumnus Shawn was shuffled around a lot as a young child. He didn’t know what a stable home life felt like. Finally, he ran away from an abusive situation, and his social worker placed him at Rawhide. Shawn soon experienced a healthy family dynamic and developed a passion that led to his existing career. He recently returned to the ranch for the 50th Anniversary celebration and shared with us how Rawhide’s family style homes and love made the difference in his life.

The Family-Living Model

“The core of family living at the house is: you have a father, you have a mother, you have brothers and sisters, plus it was functional.”

Shawn first noticed how much the staff at Rawhide supported the guys. His houseparents welcomed him with open arms, and the rest of the staff showed care and compassion that made Shawn feel like he was part of a large family.

“Everybody was there for the kids. They weren’t distracted by daily life. They were there for the kids, and you could tell.”

Shawn believes the family-living environment as well as structure like a consistent bed time and regular family meals together helped him the most.

“It was comfort and security. It was a security blanket.”

Rawhide Houseparents Have Lasting Influence

Shawn’s houseparents are his favorite part about the Rawhide experience. He felt they were perfect compliments to each other.

“It was nice to have a mom that provided the soft side of life and a dad that gave firm, loving direction and guidance.”

It seems other guys shared his feelings about the home’s housemother. They often raced to see who would hold open a door for her first.

Extracurricular Activities Spark Future Career for Rawhide Alumnus

Rawhide provided many new experiences for Shawn. In addition to a healthy family environment, Shawn also experienced new outdoor adventures like fishing, canoeing, biking, and hiking along the Wolf River and on Rawhide’s 700 acre ranch. Consequently, he developed a love for the great outdoors and nature which he would later turn into a full-time career.

Life After Rawhide

Shawn admits that he struggled after he left Rawhide. Leaving such a kind, loving environment was difficult, but he knew that Rawhide laid a foundation and it was up to him to make better choices now.  He had hope.

Shawn enrolled in college and pursued a degree that would land him a job in the great outdoors, a place he learned to love while at Rawhide. And he succeeded in making his dream come true.

Today, Shawn continues to work for the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and is married with children. He credits Rawhide with changing his life.

“I love my job; I love my life.”

What Would He Say to Rawhide Guys Today?

If Shawn were to meet a current Rawhide guy, he would tell them that they are very fortunate even if they don’t realize it at the moment. “You ended up in a beautiful place with people that care for you.”

Shawn would also say,

 “You can do whatever you want in life. I did it, and you can do it as well.”

More Success Stories Like Shawn’s

Shawn is one of the many Rawhide alumnus with success stories. If you would like to help a troubled youth succeed in life, you may donate a car, truck, boat, motorcycle, other vehicle, cash or stock. 83% of proceeds fund programs that directly impact troubled youth at Rawhide.

Selfie Obsession: The Rise of Social Media Narcissism [INFOGRAPHIC]

Remember a time when “selfies” didn’t exist? The newly-coined term has become a popular teen obsession that is time-consuming and may lead to mental health issues. Psychologists have noticed a rise in narcissistic personality traits, insecurity, self-objectification, addiction, damaged friendships, body dysmorphic disorder, and depression that coincide with the increase of selfies. Selfies may seem innocent in moderation, but overindulgence may lead to social media narcissism and other mental health issues.

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What is Narcissism?

The word narcissism comes from a Greek fable about a handsome young man, named Narcissus, who fell in love with his own reflection in a pool of water.

Narcissism is defined as a long-standing preoccupation with one’s self creating an overwhelming need for admiration. Common characteristics of narcissists are:

  • Extreme self-centeredness and a grandiose view of oneself
  • Excessive need for admiration and attention
  • Unreasonable expectations of favoritism
  • Arrogant behaviors or attitudes
  • Fantasies revolving around personal success and attractiveness

Narcissists will also lack empathy for others and have a strong desire to look down on others with scorn or find pleasure in depriving or hurting others. While narcissistic tendencies may seem apparent, narcissists are often difficult to identify.

How Do Selfies Create Narcissistic Behavior?

Selfies can create an increased preoccupation with “self” just like the man in the Greek fable who fell in love with his own reflection. Many studies suggest that social media encourages blatant self-promotion and creates an obsession with physical appearance.

How we see ourselves does not come from who we really are, but rather from how we believe others see us.
– Charles Horton Cooley, American sociologist

The “Looking Glass-Self Theory,” espoused by American sociologist Charles Horton Cooley, relates to this selfie obsession and consists of three segments:

  1. Imagining how we appear to others
  2. Imagining what judgments others make based on our appearance
  3. Imagining how others feel based on the judgments made of us

Taking and posting many selfies triggers self-indulgent and attention seeking behaviors that fall on the spectrum of narcissism and allows teenagers to relish in the attention their pictures receive on social media.

More Connected Means More Selfies

“Now that we can interact with hundreds — no, thousands — of people simultaneously, we’ve strengthened the impact that others have on our self-value.”-Dr. Letamendi

Selfies are easy to take and even easier to share. 55% of “Millennials” have taken a selfie and shared it on social media; almost double that of the next closest generation. Teens that have social media accounts are more likely to share their selfies with their friends and followers.

Technological advances can be credited for the rise of the selfie culture. The first use of the hashtag “selfie” (#selfie) appeared on Flickr in 2004, but the trend exploded when Apple released the iPhone 4 in 2010. The iPhone 4 was the first mainstream phone with a front-facing camera, making selfies extremely easy to do. Products like “the selfie stick” appeared on the market shortly after. By 2013, “selfie” was the word of the year.

Selfies helped image-based social media sites like Instagram and Snapchat become popular.

Why So Many Selfies?


Responses to selfies are immediate, and whether comments are positive, negative, personal, or anonymous—the attention creates a desire for more. Receiving notifications over social media actually releases dopamine, the chemical associated with reward and motivation response, throughout the brain.

Selfies are being snapped and shared at such a high rate because the responses meet a basic human need to be noticed, appreciated, and recognized. As more selfies are shared and more attention is generated, teens develop a need for even more attention and desire more approval from their peers. The chain reaction causes even more selfies for even more attention and can lead to social media narcissism.

Current Trends in Selfie Culture

Where do these selfies end up?

  • 48% of selfies are shared on Facebook
  • 13% of selfies are shared on WhatsApp
  • 9% of selfies are shared on Twitter
  • 8% of selfies are shared on Instagram
  • 5% of selfies are shared on Snapchat

Almost 300 million Instagram photos contain the tag “selfie,” but the most popular selfie trends are:

  • Adventure — 14,949,000+ posts shared to Instagram – meaning = the great outdoors
  • Duckface —  4,027,000+ posts shared to Instagram – meaning = pursed lips to accentuate the cheeks
  • Beach Brag —  2,675,000+ posts shared to Instagram – meaning = at the beach or on vacation
  • #IWokeUpLikeThis — 1,351,000+ posts shared on Instagram – meaning = messy, yet still pretty
  • Car Selfie — 894,000+ posts shared on Instagram – meaning = taking selfies while driving
  • Ussie — 78,000+ posts using this phrase shared on Instagram – meaning = a buddy or group selfie
  • Healthie  — 18,000+ posts shared to Instagram using #Healthie – meaning = at the gym or eating healthy

Disregard for Safety in Quest for Ultimate Selfie

While the trends above seem innocent, dangerous selfie trends are become popular. The United States Forest Service officials in Lake Tahoe have issued numerous warnings about taking selfies with wild bearsDaredevils are also making headlines by climbing to the top of skyscrapers to take their selfies. Risky selfies have consequences and are taking their toll. More people have died from taking selfies than from shark attacks during 2015.

Appearance Is Everything

Selfies are not always an accurate representation of a person.  An estimated 36% of selfies are digitally altered or enhanced. The most retouched areas of selfies are:

  • 33% retouch skin blemishes
  • 16% retouch face shape
  • 15% retouch skin tone
  • 5% retouch lips and mouth area

Editing and manipulating photos is more convenient than ever. Instagram features 22 filters and a variety of photo editing tools; Twitter has 8 filters and Facebook has 6.

The extra effort to tweak selfies often attracts the desired attention as selfies featuring a person’s face are 38% more likely to be liked and 32% more likely to attract comments and photos with filters are 21% more likely to be viewed and 45% more likely to be commented on.

When teens gain attention from their edited selfies, they begin experiencing the “looking glass self-theory” and wonder what their ideal appearance is to others, what judgments others are making, and how others feel about them. As they search for reassurance and attention, they continue self-indulgent behaviors such as posting numerous selfies to social media.

When Simply Sharing Becomes an Unhealthy Selfie Addiction

Many people value physical appearance on social media. This fosters narcissistic behaviors like:

Danny Bowman represents the dangers of selfie addiction. Danny became so obsessed with taking the perfect selfie that he spent 10 hours a day taking 200 photos of himself. He wasn’t happy with any of his selfies, became depressed, and attempted to take his life.

Doctor David Veale noticed a correlation between Body Dysmorphic Disorder and selfies: “Two out of three patients who come to see me with Body Dysmorphic Disorder since the rise of camera phones have a compulsion to repeatedly take and post selfies on social media sites.”

Teens taking excessive selfies can alienate their friends by displaying a self-centered mentality. Selfies can also cause teens to focus on an aspect they may feel is flawed.

Pamela Rutledge, director of the Media Psychology Research Center sheds light on the issue: “Selfies frequently trigger perceptions of self-indulgence or attention-seeking social dependence that raises the damned-if-you-do and damned-if-you-don’t specter of either narcissism or very low self-esteem.”

7 Ways to Identify Social Media Narcissism

Social media narcissism may be displayed through many of the following traits:

  1. Constantly Updating Their Profile Picture: A social media narcissist changes their profile picture often. They will stick with photos that maximize the chance of gaining admiration rather than ones that illustrate a close relationship.
  2. Obsessive Checking of Social Media Accounts: Social media narcissists may check their accounts 60-100 times a day. They don’t want to miss any comments or mentions.
  3. Oversharing: Social media narcissists will share purely self-promotional posts such as photos and videos that provide little value to their friends but satisfy their desire for more likes.
  4. Updating Friends and Followers on Every Little Thing: Social media narcissists will share many posts that “self-promote.” They will fill other user’s timelines with self-indulgent boasting and bragging.
  5. Over-Friending: A social media narcissist will have lots of friends and followers. Many of the friends and followers they have never met, spoken to, or don’t know very well. The goal is to have a high number of friends and followers, with little interest in making real friends.
  6. Seek Support: Social media narcissists will find comfort in their own social media feeds when they have a bad day. They will look back at their timelines and take comfort in their self-perceived awesome life.
  7. Easy to Anger: A social media narcissist may display significant anger from comments or general disagreement. They may be prone to making a public spectacle when they’ve been angered by publicly shaming someone they disagree with.

How Parents Can Help Teens’ Narcissistic Trends

While schools may teach teens about cyberbullying and online predators, it’s important for parents to educate their teens on the mental dangers of selfies and social media addiction. If your teen is displaying narcissistic personality traits, the “3 Rs of Selfie Control” can help.

  1. Reduce – Limit the amount of time your teen spends on the internet. Try to spend more time interacting offline and learn to appreciate people for who they are; not the content they share or how they look.
  2. Rethink – Ask your teen what they are using social media for. Remind them that the purpose of social media is socializing; not self-promotion.
  3. Reflect – Ask your teen what content they are sharing. Are they sharing content to serve self-interests or are they sharing content to socialize?

Dr. Michele Borba has four additional tips for parents who feel their teen is exhibiting narcissistic behaviors:

  1. Refocus Praise – Stress your child’s inner qualities such as kindness, cooperation, and selflessness. This helps children become aware of how important the feelings of others are.
  2. Lower the Curtain – Reconsider where you place focus when your teen is performing a group or team activity. If you are focusing your praise solely on your teen, consider emphasizing your teen’s teammates as well.
  3. Nurture Empathy – Point out other people’s feelings by asking “How do you think they feel?” This encourages teens to be more considerate.
  4. Boost Face-To-Face Interaction – Hold family dinners without cell phones. Encourage family time where the family is unplugged. Boosting face to face interaction helps teenagers see beyond themselves.

In moderation, selfies and social media can be positive tools for self-expression. Social media can encourage healthy communication and allow teens to share passions and figure out who they are. Alice Marwick, co-director of Fordham University’s McGannon Center for Communication Research said “Teens use the internet to experiment with things. They try on identities, they posture, and they perform. And many of those things, when parents take them out of context, may seem problematic, but when you actually see what the young person is doing, they’re experimenting with an identity, which is a very typical and healthy part of adolescent development.”

Monitor your teen’s social media use and self-indulgent behavior. If you see something inappropriate or cruel, communicate that that behavior will not be accepted. If you feel they are displaying selfish and narcissistic tendencies, have them follow the three Rs and try out Dr. Borba’s methods to help break their selfish and narcissistic trends and teach them empathy and consideration towards others.

Rawhide Changes Lives of Father and Son

Dale’s trouble began when he was in grade school. He had watched his father habitually drink for years and followed suit at 7 years of age. Soon, Dale and his friends drank every day. By his freshman year of high school, Dale rarely attended class, choosing to pick fights instead. He wound up in the juvenile system and eventually at Rawhide.

Dale Gets an Attitude Adjustment

Dale moved into the Lodge Home when he arrived at Rawhide. Unlike most guys who dread being made to go anywhere against their will, Dale was excited because:

  1. He loved cars (Rawhide accepts car donations)
  2. He thought he could fool everyone at the ranch – much like ALL the guys that come to Rawhide

Dale figured he’d skate through Rawhide and be roaming the streets in no time.

The Lodge, the first boys home where Rawhide changes lives

A few weeks into the program however, he started to change his attitude. He found people really listened to and cared about him.  He had not experienced that with his parents. Suddenly, he wanted more of the family nurturing and less of his plan to skate by.

“I was never judged or ridiculed. For the first time in my life I felt unconditionally loved.”

How Do You Melt a Hardened Heart?

As time went on, Dale felt the walls around his heart start to crumble. The love and acceptance he felt from his houseparents and youth care workers filled a need that went unmet for too long. He became open about his feelings and more willing to talk about God.

One day in the Lodge’s basement, a warm, peaceful feeling suddenly overcame Dale. He said it felt almost like he was floating. That moment was when he accepted Christ into his life.

Eventually, Dale grew close to everyone in The Lodge. He loved having a team of individuals to talk to and help him.

Rawhide’s impact was evident. Dale’s mother wrote that she was very impressed with the change in him and proud of what he had become.

“Behold, I am with you always…”

Shortly after Dale left Rawhide, his mother passed away. In his grief, Dale reverted back to old behaviors—the same behaviors that landed him at Rawhide.

Dale’s old friends wanted to help him feel better with a night on the town. Dale remembers noticing the snowy roads from the car’s back seat. He looked down for a moment and when he looked up; he saw the car heading for a ditch.

The car rolled, and the sound of crunching glass and metal surrounded Dale. When the car came to a halt, he and his friends emerged without a scratch. That’s when Dale knew, even in his lowest moments, God would be with him.

Life’s Ups and Downs

Dale proceeded to help other people in any way he could. Whenever he saw someone in need, he’d stop and talk to them and see what he could do. Dale also:

  1. Volunteered with youth groups
  2. Joined a search and rescue team
  3. Helped out strangers in need

During this time of his life, Dale married and had a son. However, the marriage did not work and Dale faced challenges with his career, housing, and family—yet God continued to show up for Dale. When Dale went through a custody battle with his ex-wife, God blessed Dale with full custody of his son.

Dale’s charitable heart and passion for youth groups impressed the judge and convinced him that Dale would provide the best atmosphere for his son.

History Repeats Itself

With his son under his roof now, Dale saw his son struggling and was concerned he might make the same mistakes. He turned to Rawhide for help again.  He thought “Rawhide changes lives. If Rawhide helped me, they can surely help my son, too.”

Adventure Camp where Rawhide changes lives

Dale signed up his son for Rawhide’s Adventure Camp—an outdoor, week-long adventure-based therapy program during summer months. When Dale returned to pick up his son after camp, he noticed two things:

  1. His son didn’t want to leave
  2. Rawhide had the same positive, loving spirit it had when he was there

“When I showed up 25 years later, the names have changed, the faces have changed, but the people haven’t, and it’s God. It’s all God.”

Adventure Camp was a great experience for Dale’s son. He made new friends and learned what he needed to do to turn his life around. When he returned home, Dale’s son started respecting his step-mother and began making better choices in activities, friends, and behaviors.

Rawhide’s Long-lasting Impact

Much of what Dale learned at Rawhide has stayed with him, especially two things:

  1. Work Hard
  2. Grow Your Faith

The joy of hard work is what kept his life in order after Rawhide. When he was asked to spread salt and sand for 12 hours in the bitter cold, he thought back to his time working in the Rawhide stables and was ready to go.

Dale’s faith has continued to grow through his many ups and downs. Recently, Dale was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, meaning he can no longer do physical labor to support his family. But Dale will be the first to tell you he’s doing great for one reason: “I got God.”

You Can Help Guys Like Dale

If Dale met someone going through what he did as a youth, he would ask them what is going on. If they didn’t want to talk, he wouldn’t push it. He’d just let them know he was there when they were ready.

He’d also like to offer this feedback to Rawhide Staff. “Your words are in there, that seed is planted. By the grace of God, those seeds will grow.” Rawhide changes lives.

Dale’s story is one of many examples of Rawhide’s success with at-risk youth. If you would like to help fund programs that have been giving at-risk youth second chances for over 50 years, consider making a charitable donation.

13 New Car Innovations Worth Noting

Technology moves at a blistering rate. Tech advancements in vehicles make today’s cars seem futuristic until the bells and whistles become the new normal. While flying cars are still only seen in sci-fi movies, new car innovations make it easier to visualize that becoming a reality. Here’s a peek at what you can expect from cars in the near future if not already at your dealership.

1.     Facial Recognition Technology

Facial recognition technology is a distraction-monitoring system that monitors eye movements and tracks when a driver is distracted, tired, or displaying reckless behavior. If you are displaying warning signs, facial recognition technology offers a reminder to keep your eyes on the road or suggests taking a break if you’re too distracted or tired to drive. This may be good for long-distance driving.

2.     Gesture Controls


Touted as the “Next Big Thing” by c|Net, a few car companies are testing gesture controls that would allow drivers to adjust temperatures, open / close the windows and sunroof, change playlists, and more. The gesture system would be powered by a 3-D camera and would react to various motions from the driver’s hand.

3.     OnStar: the Next Generation

OnStar is known for its ability to make calls or unlock your car if your keys are locked inside. But now, OnStar can analyze your driving. OnStar can send your driving data to select insurance companies, potentially creating an insurance discount for your safe driving.

OnStar’s “At Your Service” can also save you money on your favorite goodies. At Your Service searches nearby stores and favorite destinations for coupons or deals and delivers them to your phone. The service can also help book hotel rooms!

4.     Video Cameras

Many late-model vehicles come equipped with rear-view cameras, offering drivers the ability to see hidden objects behind them as they back up. Multiple cameras are also available for enlarging the field of vision with 3 to 5 different angles. Picture how much easier parking would be since color coded screens depict different distances.

5.     Text Alerts when Damaged

Imagine getting a text from your car when it’s dinged in a parking lot? Good information to have, yet what a futuristic concept. Or is it? Hella, a German company, plans to give future vehicles the ability to detect when they’ve been damaged—and with how much force. If it’s tied into a vehicle’s communication system and cameras, the technology will record the incident even when you’re not around, and send you an instant text alert.

6.     Self-Driving Cars

2019-2020 will see the first self-driving cars if all goes well. Apple is rumored to be working on a self-driving car available for 2019. Google believes they will have 10 million driver-less cars available for 2020.

BMW is also working on a self-parking mechanism called “Remote Valet Parking Assistant.” The idea is to drop off the driver and let the vehicle work its way to the nearest parking spot. The driver is then able to summon the vehicle with their smart device when he or she is ready to leave.

7.     Package Deliveries

Volvo thought of a novel idea to add more value for its customers. When a Volvo owner shopped online, they could opt to have items delivered to their car at work without them around! Volvo would send the delivery company a one-time digital key that would guide the delivery employee to the car’s location and allow entry. The delivery person gains access to your car’s interior and trunk to leave the package. Your vehicle would notify you when the package is in the vehicle and the car is locked up. Volvo realizes that this would work in some communities but doubtful in some areas like New York City.

8.     Remote Monitoring

Smartwatches and smart phones are now able to locate a driver’s late-model vehicle, lock the doors, stop the engine, and even honk the horn! All your smart device needs is Bluetooth technology and cellular or internet connection.

9.     Remote Shutdown When Stolen

Remote vehicle shutdown is offered in more vehicles every year and is an effective method for combating grand theft auto. It allows the vehicle’s owner to shut down the car if it has been stolen. This technology prevents dangerous car chases, potentially saving lives.

10.   Accident-Avoidance Technology

Auto-braking technology and collision-mitigation systems use sensors to identify oncoming vehicles, helping prevent accidents before they happen. Volvo is taking accident avoidance to another level. Volvo has a technology that will bring the car to a complete stop to prevent a collision.

11.   Biometric Vehicle Access

If keyless entry has become commonplace now, what can you expect to see in 20 years? The answer—fingerprint entry. Drivers will be able to unlock and start vehicles with nothing more than a fingerprint. Retina scanners are also being considered by car companies, but don’t expect to see them anytime soon. This would put the kibosh on package deliveries inside your car. (See number 7.)

12.   Parental Controls on Vehicles

You’re probably accustomed to parental controls on your TV and computers. Now you can worry less about your teen drivers on the road too. Some vehicles allow parents to program speed limits so that your teen can’t engage in racing of any kind. You can also set maximum decibel levels for the audio system. Other drivers will appreciate that and your teens may also, later in life. The program will even constantly remind teenage drivers to wear seatbelts if they aren’t already.

13.   Airbags That Stop Cars

Mercedes is experimenting with airbags that expand underneath a vehicle. The airbags have a friction coating that helps slow vehicles and doubles stopping power. The airbags also cushion any impact, correct lean during hard braking, and help prevent passengers from sliding under seat belts during collision.

Brett Favre Returns for 2015 Chalk Talk Benefiting Rawhide

Could one day be any more exciting for Wisconsin citizens or Packers fans around the globe? Take the Thanksgiving holiday; add in a traditional turkey meal with Brett Favre, sprinkle in Cherry Starr along with the twin contestants from NBC’s The Voice, a Packers-Bears game, a ceremony to retire Brett Favre’s jersey number, and a special appearance on Lambeau field by Bart Starr. Mix it all together for a day to go down in history. In case you missed the daytime events, we’ll recap them for you.

Event Line-up

10:30 AM  Silent Auction
11:10 AM   Entertainment by Andi & Alex from “The Voice”
11:45 AM   Traditional Thanksgiving Meal
12:10 PM   Rawhide Tribute to Bart & Cherry Starr
12:45 PM   Chalk Talk with Brett Favre & Bill Michaels
1:35 PM     Live Auction and Concluding Remarks
2:00 PM    On to Lambeau Field and a Packer Game!

Fans Showed Up in Droves to See Brett Favre

Nearly 1,500 people clad in either Packers apparel or #4 jerseys packed Green Bay’s KI convention center to spend Thanksgiving with Brett Favre. This was the 3rd annual Chalk Talk fundraiser for Rawhide and the largest by far. In the pictures below, guests are lined up to view items in the silent auction.

Chalk Talk with Brett Favre silent auction line

Opening Act: Twin Contestants from NBC’s The Voice

While people lined up to view silent auction items before the program began, Andi & Alex from NBC’s The Voice entertained our guests with a musical performance. They sang about 5 songs, including the song from their blind audition on The Voice. What many people may not know is that the twins are from Green Bay and are avid Packers fans.

Traditional Thanksgiving Meal

1,500 people shared a traditional meal with turkey, dressing, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes, sautéed green beans, salad, and a pumpkin torte for dessert.

Chalk Talk room before Brett Favre

Rawhide Tribute to Bart & Cherry Starr

The Starr family resided in the Green Bay area for 31 years, from the 1960s through the 1990s when they moved near family in Alabama. During that time, they gave generously of themselves to the community and to Rawhide Boys Ranch. It was only fitting to pay tribute to them on this special day. Several state and local leaders spoke to the crowd, including Green Bay Mayor Jim Schmitt.

Cherry and Bart Starr, Jr took the podium next and thanked the crowd for their continuing support. She spoke fondly of helping the troubled youth of Rawhide over the years and remarked, “This couldn’t have happened without the generosity of all of you today.” She then promised that Bart Starr Sr would walk on Lambeau Field at half time for Brett Favre’s number retirement ceremony.

Cherry & Bart Starr Receive Key to City

Green Bay Mayor Jim Schmitt presented Cherry with a key to the city for both her and Bart, for their significant contributions to the community over the years.

Brett Gets Standing Ovation

After a video highlight of Brett’s football career, courtesy of the Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame, Brett Favre took the stage for Chalk Talk 2015. Over 1,500 fans greeted The Old Gunslinger with a roaring ovation.

Brett shared stories with Bill Michaels that many haven’t heard before including a prank played on legendary coach and analyst, John Madden. Brett had a penchant for releasing stink bombs during meetings and decided to release one on Madden. Brett didn’t realize Madden was allergic to an ingredient in them and Madden started having an allergic reaction. The sight of Madden pulling at his collar during the allergic reaction scared Brett so much he never pranked Madden again.Brett also discussed the favorite part of his career, saying the most fun he ever had was not when he was playing, but when he was on the bus with his team or joking around during TV timeouts. “For me, it was never really about the individual stuff, it was always the group stuff. As much as I’m honored to be here, have my jersey retired, be in the Hall of Fame, I’m probably more proud of the fact that we had some good years together.”

Former Packer Teammates Show Up

Brett’s former teammates were also in attendance. Former Packers at the 2015 Chalk Talk were:

Brett & Deanna Favre Receive Key to the City

As Brett and Bill wrapped up their chalk talk banter, Mayor Schmitt took the stage again for one last surprise. Schmitt presented Brett and Deanna Favre with their own key to the city, explaining that the key represented something special: “You are a friend, no matter where you live. You’re an honor and you’re a brother. You’re a family member of the city of Green Bay.”

Favre Support of Rawhide

The 2015 Chalk Talk isn’t the only support Brett has provided for Rawhide. Over the last couple years, Brett has:

Brett has been providing support for Rawhide since he and his wife, Deanna, founded Favre 4 Hope in 1995.

Join Brett’s Support of Rawhide

You can join Brett & Deanna Favre in helping Rawhide give at-risk and troubled youth a second chance. Rawhide has been a trusted charity for over 50 years and is committed to helping youth change their lives. If you are looking for a way to make a difference and give a second chance to those who need it, please consider donating to Rawhide.
WATCH THE FULL 2015 CHALK TALK HERE…


 

Social Media: A Gateway for Child Predators [INFOGRAPHIC]

As fast as technological advances spawn new social media outlets, teens readily create accounts on these new social networks and spend much of their free time online. Around 81% of teens use social media and 65% of teens with social media accounts log on more than once a day. With many teens signing on to sites and sharing personal information, do they consider privacy settings, information they display, or the short- and long-term effects of displaying such information? The shocking truth is very few do.

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Privacy and Security of Social Media

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Social Media: A Gateway for Child Predators

Do you know what your children display on their social media accounts? Technological advancements spawn new social media outlets, and teens flock to the websites, ready to share personal information to millions of strangers. Online predators follow suit, racing to social networking sites, eager to find individuals ready to share personal information so they can exploit them. Few children consider the consequences of the information they share online, not realizing 82% of cyber stalkers use social media to find information about potential victims and 65% of cyber stalkers use social media to discover where kids live and what school they attend. Teens will even get creative with their privacy settings and hide information they should be sharing from their parents.

Most Popular Social Networks Among Teens

Social networks are launched or changed frequently. Facebook remains the most-used network between ages 12-24, but other social networks are growing in popularity.

  • 74% of teens use Facebook
  • 59% of teens use Instagram
  • 57% of teens use Snapchat
  • 32% of teens use Twitter
  • 30% of teens use Vine
  • 20% of teens use Pinterest

The average teen using social media has 300 Facebook friends, 79 Twitter followers, 150 Instagram followers, and receives more “snaps” from Snapchat than texts. Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are used mainly to share images through their mobile device. 21% of teens believe using a mobile device allows them to hide information from their parents more effectively.

Teen Privacy Concerns Misaligned

Social networks are notorious for having complex privacy settings, but are teens or parents concerned about privacy? Only 9% of teens said they are “very concerned” about privacy on social media sites while 78% of teens said they felt in control of their social networking sites.

Teen Levels of Concern about Online Privacy

  • 9% are very concerned
  • 31% are somewhat concerned
  • 38% are not too concerned
  • 22% are not at all concerned

An additional 70% believe they understand privacy protection on Facebook, but only 40% of teens keep their Facebook profiles private. When teens do show concern for social media privacy, they focus on hiding things from:

  • Authority figures
  • Teachers
  • Future employers
  • Parents

Rather than focusing on:

  • Identity theft
  • Damaged reputation
  • Legal issues
  • Conflict
  • Predators

How Teens Cover Their Tracks Online

50% of parents believe teens tell them everything they do online but don’t realize that 70% of teens hide their online behavior from their parents and 25% of teens say their parents know “little” or nothing” about their online behaviors. Teens hide their behavior through a variety of surreptitious methods:

  • 80% of teens have used privacy settings to hide content from friends/family
  • 53% clear their browser history
  • 46% close/minimize browser when parent walks in room
  • 34% hide or delete Instant Messages (IMs) or videos
  • 23% lie or omit details about online activities
  • 21% of teens use a mobile phone to access the internet and hide activity from their parents
  • 20% use privacy settings to make certain content viewable only by friends
  • 20% use private browsing modes
  • 15% create private email address unknown to parents
  • 12% override parental privacy settings
  • 9% create duplicate/fake social network profiles

Hiding information is not the only method teens use to avoid trouble. The Pew Internet study found 26% of teen social media users post fake information such as a false name, age, or location and 8% of teens create separate social media accounts, connecting with parents on one account and using the other to share more content and interact with people.

Teens will also use what is referred to as “social steganography,” a method of hiding information in plain sight by posting to social media using vague language such as “not being in a happy state” or acronyms to open communication amongst a select group of individuals.

What are Teens Sharing on Social Media?

Teens may feel they control their privacy settings and are able to hide information they share on social media from their parents. However, teens share information that puts them at risk.

  • 92% of teens share real name on most social media platforms
  • 92% of teens post real pictures of themselves
  • 71% of teens list which school they go to
  • 20% share cell phone number
  • 19% share email and social media passwords
  • 16% auto-share location in posts

Most alarming is 33% of teens are friends with people they’ve never met off-line (click to tweet this stat)  and a third of teenagers who meet people online have then met up with some of these people face-to-face.

Opening the Door for Predators

When teens “friend” individuals they don’t know or share sensitive information on social networking sites, they are at greater risk of encountering a predator online.

  • 3 out of 10 teens in the United States have been stalked by complete strangers on Facebook and received friend requests from people they didn’t know.
  • 69% of teens regularly receive online personal messages from people they don’t know. Most don’t tell a trusted adult.
  • 16% of teens say they’ve considered meeting face-to-face with someone they’ve only chatted with online.
  • 82% of cyber stalkers use social media to find out information about potential victims.
  • 65% of cyber stalkers use social media to discover where kids live and what school they attend.
  • 1 in 6 teens have been contacted online by a stranger in a “way that made them feel scared or uncomfortable.”
  • 1 in 20 teens admitted to arranging a secret meeting with someone they met online.

social media predatorWho are the Predators?

  • Most are male
  • 76% are over 26 years old
  • Like to meet in chat rooms
  • Only 5% of predators pretend to be the same age as their victims

How Predators Gain a Child’s Trust

Online predators research current trends and use them to open conversation with children and teens. Once they have a teen’s interest, they listen to and sympathize with their problems and begin to seduce children by lavishing them with attention, affection, kindness, and even gifts.

Predators slowly introduce sexual content into their conversations and begin to evaluate children as prospective candidates to meet in person.

100% of victims of online sexual predators have gone willingly to meet with the predator.

Where Predators Lurk

  • Social networks
  • Blogs
  • Chat rooms
  • Instant messaging
  • Chat features on game apps – sneaky!
  • Email
  • Discussion boards
  • Other websites

Online predators are difficult to identify because of the drastic difference of how they represent themselves in person and online. Online predators seek children that appear vulnerable, lonely, sheltered, or naïve. Predators also focus on teens that have access to accounts with private messaging.

While Facebook remains the most prevalent site for social media stalking, emerging social networks are creating other opportunities:

  • Instagram – Instagram has become the second most popular social network and has become a popular network for predators. Instagram has had an issue with teens posting explicit pictures and has taken steps to crack down, but predators are finding ways around settings.
  • Kik – Kik is an alternate to texting that doesn’t require a phone number. All children need is access to a mobile device and Wi-Fi. Kik has no parental controls so children can access adult content with strangers any time.

  • Snapchat – Snapchat is a photo-sharing app where photos and videos delete themselves in seconds. This helps predators lure teenagers into a sense of security, providing a chance to ask for explicit content. It is difficult for parents to know what their children are sending unless they access the app while an exchange is happening.
  • WhatsApp – WhatsApp has 450 million users and, like Kik, is an alternative to text messaging. WhatsApp is frequently used by predators but WhatsApp provides tracking services so parents can monitor who their children are chatting and what they’re sharing. Parents also have the ability to block the app.
  • Tinder – Tinder is a dating app designed for adults, but a recent study found 7 percent of users are between the ages of 13 and 17. Tinder is a location based app that allows users to narrow a location down to one mile.

Parents should also note emerging social networks such as Bebo, Hyper, Ello, and Tumblr as they have shown growth in popularity amongst teens.

More Parents Taking Action

More parents are concerned that their teenager’s online activity puts them at risk while possibly hurting future career options as well. More parents are observing, discussing, and monitoring their teen’s digital footprints.

72% of parents of online teens are concerned about how their child interacts online with people they do not know, with some 53% of parents being “very” concerned.

This video explains how parents must communicate with their children about internet safety.

When parents talk to teens about internet safety and security, teens are 40% less likely to consider meeting someone face-to-face with whom they only know from the internet. 50% of teens also said they would change their behavior if they knew their parent was watching.

How to Keep Your Teen Safe

Parents can talk to teens about internet security in a variety of ways:

  • Establish boundaries – Explain acceptable behavior on social media as well as the amount of time that is acceptable.
  • Disable location sharing on phones and social media – You might have to dig around for directions on each site, but have your teen hide locations when posting updates and chatting.
  • Stay informed of threats – Knowing the latest trends and social networks allows parents to stay informed and know what teens may or may not be sharing. Staying informed may also encourage teens to share more information with their parents.
  • Discuss privacy settings – Educating teens about privacy settings and managing their accounts helps prevent information from falling in the wrong eyes. Parents may also consider placing parental controls on children’s devices. 40% of parents have already done so and 90% of parents that have parental controls installed feel their child is safer because of it.
  • Keep computer in central location – and limit age when children get smart phone
  • Use Software filters – programs like Net Nanny can monitor sites, block chats, mask profanity and set up time controls.

Opening communication with teens encourages discussion around and allows parents and teens to communicate about troubling situations. Having healthy communication can assure parents that their teen is using social networks in a safe way and prevents teens from engaging with online predators.

3 Things New Horse Teaches Guys in Equine Assisted Therapy

The Rawhide Equine Assisted Therapy (REAP) has a new four-legged therapist—Memphis: a horse who’s long on personality. His previous owner felt Memphis would be a perfect fit for the program and recently donated him to Rawhide. Memphis has indeed been a hit with the guys, providing personality, patience, and 12 years of experience working with people.

Horses Have a Pecking Order?

Rawhide’s Equine Assisted Therapy Program is run by Gretchen Liethen. When guys enter the REAP program Gretchen explains the dynamics of a herd setting and mentions that Memphis is the lowest in the “pecking order.” When guys hear this, they react one of two ways:

  1. Connect with Memphis and want to work with him
  2. Feel Memphis isn’t strong enough and pass on him

Memphis has a feel for the type of guy he works with best. When a guy is more strong willed, Memphis won’t pay much attention to him. When a guy feels more closed off, Memphis connects. Memphis will make the most of the opportunity and pay close attention to the guy, offering him a match better than even Chuck Woolery could make!

Personality Plus…Horse Humor

Memphis has unique ways of presenting himself and connecting with guys. When Memphis becomes interested, he will offer his head to the student for petting and follow the student along the rail. If the student goes in a different direction, he will watch the guy until he returns.

Memphis displays a sense of humor when he is being handled. He makes faces when a guy finds the right spot to scratch. Memphis will also display visible happiness when he is being praised. Once someone starts working with him, Memphis follows them around with abundant happiness. Rawhide guys get a kick out of his personality.

3 Areas of Impact

Memphis noticeably impacts the Rawhide guys. When guys work with Memphis, Gretchen has noticed three areas of improvement:

  1. Confidence – Guys learn how to be a leader by leading Memphis through activities.
  2. Patience – Guys might encounter tough obstacles while tending to Memphis. Thanks to Memphis’ responsiveness, guys learn how to overcome these obstacles with patience.
  3. Compassion – Guys learn how to lovingly care for something outside of themselves and receive that love and affection in return.

During Rawhide’s 50th anniversary, many alumni talked about the impact equine assisted therapy had on their lives. Memphis is more than happy to continue the tradition and help carry out Rawhide’s mission of transforming lives.

Support Equine Assisted Therapy

Rawhide’s Equine Assisted Therapy Program wouldn’t be possible without support from our donors. Contributions buy animal food and supplies to keep our horses and our guys happy. If you are looking for a way to make a difference in your Wisconsin community, please consider making a donation today.