Ground Up Climbing: Transition of Ownership

April 3, 2023 By Jake Scharfman

Dear valued members, guests, parents, athletes, and all others that make up the Ground Up community.

We are excited to announce that ownership of Ground Up Climbing Centre will be transferred to new hands, effective immediately. We want to assure you that despite this change, the gym will continue to operate as usual under the same name, offering the same high-quality services, facilities, and experiences that you have come to expect.

The new owners are committed to maintaining the same level of excellence that we have strived for over the years, and they bring with them a wealth of experience and passion for the sport of rock climbing born from many years in the industry. We are confident that under their leadership, the gym will continue to thrive and grow. We want to take this opportunity to thank each and every one of you for your support, dedication, and loyalty to our gym. We could not have achieved our success without you, and we are grateful for the memories we’ve made and the community we have built along this journey.

We are delighted to continue climbing, training, and enjoying all that Squamish climbing has to offer with all of you. We look forward to seeing you at the gym soon.

Please read on to meet the new ownership team!

Ground Up Climbing’s new ownership team is composed of three members: Alison Stewart-Patterson, Julia Pilliar and Dave Perozzo. The new owners value community, inclusion, foundational knowledge, continued growth and development, and love to climb. We are proud to be two-thirds female owned!

Alison Stewart-Patterson (she/her)

Alison Stewart-Patterson was born and raised in Kamloops, BC, and has called Squamish home since 2021. Alison literally learned to climb at the same time she learned to walk which kick-started her climbing career as a competitive athlete. Alison continued her journey working in a multitude of climbing gyms around BC until she made her way to Squamish. At Ground Up, Alison has been a front desk staff, route setter, coach, instructor, and most recently Program Director. These experiences have helped Alison to develop the mindset and curate in-depth knowledge of the business to lead it forward. When Alison isn’t at Ground Up, you will find her romping the trails on her mountain bike, in the Grand wall boulders, or binging the Bachelorette.

Julia Pilliar (she/her)

Julia Pilliar loves everything about climbing – the community, the physical and mental challenges, and the personal growth that results from it. Julia and her wife Caitlin love spending time with family and friends, being outdoors as much as possible, and introducing their four-year-old daughter to everything the world has to offer. This usually means weekend adventures, trips to the climbing gym or crag or sport of the season, and making lots of chocolate chip pancakes.

Dave (he/him)

Dave Perozzo is one of Canada’s most experienced climbing gym operators. Dave and his family built their first climbing gym, the Guelph Grotto, in 1994, which has long been respected for its inclusive community and quality climbing. Dave bends over backward (figuratively – speak to him about his joints after years of climbing and construction work) to help others and values family and community above all else. He thrives off the energy of bringing climbers together to achieve a common goal.

The new owners are extremely excited to continue to help support the Ground Up community. You likely won’t notice any drastic changes in day-to-day operations, and you can look forward to experiencing the same legendary community events, and ongoing excellent customer service.



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