Schoolteacher Mike Haugen Summits Everest and Participates in Rescue - SNEWS

Schoolteacher Mike Haugen Summits Everest and Participates in Rescue

Denver schoolteacher Mike Haugen, 30, successfully summited Mount Everest in the early morning (Nepal time) as an estimated 7,000 schoolchildren followed along.
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Coleman Celebrates by Sponsoring ‘Peak Experience' at New York's Rubin Museum of Art

Denver schoolteacher Mike Haugen, 30, successfully summited Mount Everest in the early morning (Nepal time) on Monday, May 21, 2007, as an estimated 7,000 schoolchildren followed along as part of The Coleman Company, Inc.'s Web-based Everest 5.5 Challenge (www.colemaneverest.com). On his descent, Haugen and his teammates helped an unidentified climber from another team, who had been abandoned at the Balcony (27,500-ft.) and who was in critical condition.

In his dispatch posted just after midnight (Nepal time) on May 22 to www.colemaneverest.com, Haugen says he and climbing partner Casey Grom, had the most grueling day of their lives. “Summiting Mount Everest, was the easy part,” he wrote. After spending a half-hour on top in pleasant weather, they became involved in a life-or-death rescue. “Our nine-hour Mount Everest climb day turned into 24 hours of climbing with the rescue being a grueling descent with a patient to camp III, where we dropped her off with some very able doctors,” Haugen reported.

Back at Coleman headquarters in Kansas, word of Haugen's summit prompted pride and gratitude from his friends and sponsor.

“On behalf of all of us at Coleman, I would like to congratulate Mike and Casey on their tremendous accomplishment – summiting the world's highest peak on their first try and then rescuing a fellow climber,” said Gary A. Kiedaisch, Coleman's President and CEO. “Mike also shared his climb with thousands of kids as part of our campaign to fight ‘nature deficit disorder.' He encouraged them to go outside, be more active and to discover the Everest in their own backyards.”

Welcome Back Reception To Be Evening of June 8; RMA's Family Weekend of High Altitude Adventure is June 9-10
Now that Haugen is coming down from the mountain, he'll face another kind of challenge with his participation in A Peak Experience: The Ultimate Sleepover. As an ambassador for the high performance Coleman® Exponent® line of gear, he will help lead 40 New York-area kids (ages 11-13) on a simulated climb of the world's highest peak inside New York's Rubin Museum of Art, June 9-10, at 150 West 17th Street. Coleman is hosting a public welcome back reception for Haugen on Friday evening, June 8, from 6 p.m. to midnight in the museum's popular K2 Lounge.

By day, there will be exploration and re-creation of Himalayan landscapes, scavenger hunts, music and games, shadow puppets and stories. At first fall of evening light, Everest will rise grandly from where the museum's quiet spiral staircase once stood. Haugen and five-time Everest summiteer, Luis Benitez, with a team of Sherpa guides and other experienced mountaineers, will lead the children through challenge and adventure with the ultimate goal of reaching the summit.

With able minds and strong bodies, the children will learn mountaineering safety techniques, practice leadership skills, and experience the Sherpa culture. The sleepover is sponsored by Coleman, the camping and mountaineering gear supplier that is providing tents, lanterns, flashlights, headlamps and other gear to the young climbers.

While only 40 kids can be accommodated for the sleepover, Coleman representatives will be on hand the entire weekend to help members of the general public – thousands are expected – to immerse themselves in mountaineering history and Himalayan culture.

For a complete museum schedule, log onto www.rmanyc.org/calendar/ Coleman is sponsoring A Peak Experience this year as an extension of its Coleman Everest 5.5 Challenge. Through the challenge, which ended May 11, the company enabled thousands of American schoolchildren to go on a virtual climb of Mount Everest at www.colemaneverest.com. They followed in the footsteps of Haugen who uploaded photos, videos and daily dispatches of his climb.

The specially designed Colemaneverest.com Web site contained a list of activities that kids could undertake as they earned their way from Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal, to the summit of the 29,035-foot mountain. Each of the 20 segments was completed when a child reported being active at least 60 minutes or 10,000 steps a day.

About RMA
RMA houses an esteemed collection of Himalayan art. The paintings, pictorial textiles, and sculpture are drawn from cultures that touch upon the 1,800-mile arc of mountains that extends from Afghanistan in the northwest to Myanmar (Burma) in the southeast and includes Tibet, Nepal, Mongolia, and Bhutan. The larger Himalayan cultural sphere, determined by significant cultural exchange over millennia, includes Iran, India, China, Central Asia, and Southeast Asia. (www.rmanyc.org)

The Coleman Company, Inc. is an international leader in the innovation and marketing of outdoor products, including its legendary lanterns, as well as stoves, tents, sleeping bags, backpacks, coolers, furniture and grills. Its products are sold and used all over the world. Coleman embraces its leadership role as an advocate for the outdoors, contributing to outdoor causes and inspiring people to get outside. Founded in 1900 and based in Wichita, Kan., Coleman is a wholly owned subsidiary of Jarden Corporation, and can be found online at www.coleman.com. Consumers can contact Coleman by phone at 800-835-3278 or by e-mail at consumerservice@coleman.com.
Note to media: For information on the Rubin Museum of Art, contact: Karen Kedmey, (212) 620-5000 x331, kkedmey@rmanyc.org. News releases and images are available upon request or can be downloaded at www.coleman.com/newsroom.

Coleman® is a registered trademark of The Coleman Company, Inc.

Jarden Corporation is a leading provider of niche consumer products used in and around the home. Jarden operates in three primary business segments through a number of well recognized brands, including: Branded Consumables: Ball®, Bee®, Bicycle®, Crawford®, Diamond®, First Alert®, Forster®, Hoyle®, JavaLog®, Kerr®, Lehigh®, Leslie-Locke®, Loew- Cornell® and Pine Mountain®; Consumer Solutions: Bionaire®, Crock- Pot®, FoodSaver®, Harmony®, Health o meter®, Holmes®, Mr. Coffee®, Oster®, Patton®, Rival®, Seal-a-Meal®, Sunbeam®, VillaWare® and White Mountain™; and Outdoor Solutions: Abu Garcia®, Berkley®, Campingaz®, Coleman®, Fenwick®, Gulp®, Mitchell®, Stren® and Trilene®. Headquartered in Rye, N.Y., Jarden has over 20,000 employees worldwide. For more information, please visit www.jarden.com.

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