Who We Are
EmptyNesterAdventures is the brainchild of Bruce & Linda Erley who reside in the Denver (Colorado) metro area.
Married 28 years, Bruce and Linda first met in 1978 while traveling with a cast of the international, educational and performing arts program, Up with People. No love at first sight for this couple who whose cultural backgrounds proved a challenge-Linda a Southern Belle from Baton Rouge and Bruce a brash Yankee from Connecticut. Proving once again that opposites do indeed attract, Bruce and Linda became close friends and then fell in love, marrying on December 30, 1982.
They spent the first 10 years of their lives together living in Tucson, AZ where Bruce continued to work for Up with People in marketing and sales as Linda left a career in fitness training, dance and office administration to become an at-home mom for their three sons, Christopher (born in 1985), Matthew (1986) and Patrick (1989).
They moved their family to Colorado in 1995 when Bruce’s employer relocated there, a move that felt like a homecoming for them both as Linda made many ski trips to Colorado as a girl and Bruce attended Colorado State University.
Bruce and Linda’s personal Christian faith has always been the cornerstone of their lives and their marriage. Though EmptyNesterAdventures is a nonsectarian site, you will likely find Bruce and Linda’s faith walk reflected in many of their posts.
Linda grew up in Port Allen, Louisiana, a quiet town across the Mississippi River from Baton Rouge. The third born of four sisters, Linda filled her adolescent life with dance, animals and friends. She graduated from Louisiana State University 1977 and immediately left to travel around the world for more than four years as a performer and dance captain with Up with People.
As a fulltime mom-at-home for more than 20 years, Linda made her boys her focus, spending many hours volunteering at their schools, supporting their hobbies and sporting activities and being the Kool-Aid mom on the street. She also moved into leadership roles at her church and eventually helped to found an independent women’s bible study for which she served as teaching leader.
In 2008, following their youngest son’s departure for college, Linda returned to the workforce as a corporate concierge for a large technology company, an idea “re-entry” position for her as it called on her organizational, logistical, management and communications skills, all finely honed after two decades of supervising three very active sons.
Linda has always been a writer, regularly journaling, writing articles and bible studies. You are likely to find her posts to be both intuitive and entertaining as she weaves her sense of humor and positive perspective into her reports.
Bruce’s early youth was spent in the suburbs of Chicago and the middle and high school years in the Hartford, Connecticut area. The third born of four boys, Bruce was a drummer in a garage band during high school and was always enterprising new cottage businesses to sell to friends and neighbors.
Bruce traveled with Up with People as a student participant in 1973 and then attended Colorado State University receiving a B.A. in Journalism in 1976. Upon graduation Bruce began an 18-year career with Up with People moving through marketing and sales positions until he was the Vice President of the department at the time of his departure in 1995.
Current, Bruce is the President and CEO of the Creative Strategies Group, a full-service sponsorship and event marketing agency based in Denver, Colorado which he founded in September, 1995. Creative Strategies Group (CSG) specializes in sponsorship and event marketing consultation as well as forging partnerships between corporations and events, festivals, nonprofit organizations and other properties.
Bruce is Accredited in Public Relations (APR) by the Public Relations Society of America and a Certified Festival & Events Executive (CFEE) by the International Festivals and Events Association.
An entrepreneur at heart, Bruce loves enterprising new concepts and building support for these products and services. He is also a skilled writer and regularly speaks at conferences and conventions across the country and around the world.