Pronghorn resort in Bend, Ore., is now bringing its 640-acre location situated in a 1,000-year-old juniper forest at the foot of the Cascade Mountain range into full view for groups with the debut of its new event island. Situated within a lake between the first and 18th holes of the resort’s Tom Fazio Golf Course, the island features 360-degree, open-sky views framed by the mountains and is positioned in a way that turns the Central Oregon sunset into an evening event backdrop. Not only does the island provide groups with a new outdoor event space, but it immerses attendees into the natural environment for which Central Oregon is known.
“Pronghorn has always offered a variety of beautiful indoor event spaces; however, one area we knew we could build out was our outdoor offerings,” says Spencer Schaub, the resort’s general manager. “Bend has beautiful summers (and spring and fall seasons), and Pronghorn has amazing views of the nearby Cascade mountain range. Event Island has opened us up to hosting so many more functions for guests who want to be outside taking advantage of the climate and the views.”
The 7,000-sf island provides a lush lawn area for event space. The lawn is surrounded by native perennial flowers and grasses that change throughout the seasons. The natural vegetation aligning the perimeter enhances privacy and the natural state of the island. To keep it convenient for meeting planners and attendees, the island is located just a few steps from the clubhouse, connected by an arched stone bridge. It has electrical connections in place, and in 2015, the property staff plans to host entertainment and musical performances on the island, says Schaub.
The outdoor event space matches the variety of outdoor teambuilding activities—mountain biking, rock climbing and hiking at nearby Smith Rock—that the property already offers. Schaub suggests a trip down the Bend Ale Trail, which stops into 14 local craft breweries, as well as standup paddle boarding and kayaking on the Deschutes River. Pronghorn also hosts a lot of golf groups, given its two courses designed by Tom Fazio and Jack Nicklaus, he adds.
“Pronghorn capitalizes on the destination by offering and arranging all the amazing outdoor adventures that Central Oregon has to offer,” says Schaub. “Our guests love taking advantage of the winter skiing at Mt. Bachelor and floating the Deschutes in the summer, and we offer programs that allow them to see and do everything in the area, with guided tours of Central Oregon’s lava tubes and caves and so much more.”