The proposed development of Piano Creek Ranch is on hold.
Piano Creek is a multi-million dollar, 2,700 acre, investor-owned luxury development proposed for construction on the East Fork of the San Juan River in Mineral County and about 15 miles northeast of Pagosa Springs.
"Everything is being suspended while the original 14 investors evaluate the situation," said Matt Bachus, a spokesman for Piano Creek's developers.
An office maintained on Lewis Street by the developers will be closed after Oct. 31, according to Bachus. Local employees of the office are being laid off.
Failure to secure sufficient investment backing given the current national economy is to blame for the need to place the project on hold, Bachus said. A commitment of at least 50 percent of the anticipated cost was needed in order to obtain financial underwriting from banks, according to Bachus. The 50-percent threshold was never reached.
"Those opposed to us will probably try to take credit for the suspension," Bachus said, "but that isn't the case. The truth is, we haven't met the financial requirements."
When referring to those opposed to the project, Bachus means those environmental groups who objected that the development will "spoil the last, large pristine mountain valley in this part of Colorado."
The number of investor commitments required to fund the development has fluctuated from 350 to 395 to 295 since 1999 when the project was first announced. As the required number of investors fluctuated, so did the value of each investment&emdash;between $375,000 and $635,000. The land, valued at approximately $20 million, was initially owned by Dan McCarthy. Balcor American Express owned a loan on the property amounting to about 37 percent of the property value.
Original, passive investors numbering 14 are said to have purchased the Balcor American Express interest. Those original 14 are the principles who make up The Ranch at East Fork LLC. The 14 will decide what happens next with the portion of the property under their control.
McCarthy remains majority owner of the property. An additional 200 investors had committed to the project, according to Bachus. Money committed by the 200 has been returned with interest, Bachus said.
As first conceived, Piano Creek would have included individual and group lodging, horse back riding, golfing, skiing, and fishing. Membership included lodging for a specific time frame and access to the amenities.
Anthrax cases, concern and contamination in the United States have been garnering attention worldwide over the last few weeks.
Twelve cases of anthrax - an acute infectious disease that can be deadly - have been confirmed on the East Coast. Response protocols for everyone from doctors to postal workers are being written, and revised, but information is trickling from east to west, resulting in bioterrorism meetings and workshops nationwide.
In Archuleta County, postal workers have been given updated protocols for handling mail, bioterrorism meetings between emergency and health care workers are planned or have been held, and a general heightened sense of awareness exists.
Pagosa Springs Postmaster Richard Love said all of the postal employees have received additional training concerning possible bioterrorism agents sent through the mail. Protective gloves and masks have been ordered for the postal staff to use if they so choose.
According to response protocol distributed by the Postal Inspection Service, when suspicious mail is identified, the Inspection Service will be called to determine if a hazardous material response is necessary.
During the investigation, employees will be asked to stay away from the parcel, it will be covered with available material and isolated as best as possible. Employees who have come in contact with a suspicious parcel are directed to wash exposed skin with soap and water and remain in a safe place until released by the proper authorities.
Love said the post office precautions and inspections cover mail up until it's delivered. Once delivery is made, any problems or concerns with mail content should be reported to law enforcement agencies, he said.
"I don't feel at this point there's any reason to believe there's anybody in danger here in Pagosa Springs," Love said "Everything has been back east. However, we're not taking the whole thing lightly."
So far, three people have died from the disease, one who worked for a national news magazine in Florida, and two postal workers in Washington D.C. Anthrax, which was most common in domestic and wild herbivores such as sheep, goats and cattle until a veterinary vaccine was developed in the mid-1900s, occurs in three forms. It can be either cutaneous (skin), inhalation or gastrointestinal. In all cases, spreading the disease required the presence of spores which are unlikely to be passed from person-to-person contact.
The disease can be treated effectively with several different kinds of prescription antibiotics if diagnosed soon enough. Both the City Market pharmacy in Pagosa Country Center and Jackisch Pharmacy downtown have supplies on hand.
Rice Reavis, pharmacist at Jackisch Drug, said Cipro - the drug given the most attention in treatment of the disease by the national media, but certainly not the only option - is also used to treat urinary tract infections and other skin infections.
So far, he said, local concern has amounted to some casual questions, but no panic.
"We don't have people coming in terrified, and that's been a pleasant surprise."
Sue Kleckner, nurse manager for the San Juan Basin Health Department in Pagosa Springs, said emergency management efforts on bioterrorism are being coordinated through the Durango office. In addition, a protocol has been implemented for checking mail.
Currently, she said, the human vaccine for Anthrax is not available.
"We are working on it," Kleckner said. "I'm sure when and if anything like that would happen, we would have vaccine or antibiotics."
People have also been calling the health department about the smallpox vaccine, Kleckner said. It's also not available in Pagosa Springs right now. No incidents of smallpox being used for bioterrorism have been reported anywhere in the country at this point.
Should a hazardous materials team be needed for any reason, Fire Chief Warren Grams said, there are at least three in the area. Two members of the Pagosa Springs Fire District are trained hazardous materials technicians, two are trained in hazardous materials operations and the rest of the department is trained to an awareness level.
A suspicious letter or something similar could by handled locally, Grams said. However, a large biological hazardous material incident would require a specialized team to respond. Teams with that capability exist in the San Luis Valley, at the Farmington Fire Department and as part of the Colorado State Patrol.
"It's something that's a concern," he said. "However, the probability of something happening in Pagosa Springs is very low in my opinion. There really isn't anything in the Pagosa area that could be considered a high value target."
The risk, if there is any, would most likely come from some type of hazardous material, be it a biological agent or otherwise, being transported through the area to somewhere else.
"We certainly can have a transportation incident, and we will deal with that," Grams said.
Both the Archuleta County Sheriff's Department and Emergency Medical Services employees are also working to create protocol in the event of a threat of bioterrorism.
Mail-out ballots for the Nov. 6 general election are returning to the county clerk's office at a good pace, according to June Madrid, the county election official. At the same time, voters are confused by some details of completing and returning the ballots.
"So far, the turnout is good," Madrid said yesterday morning. "We've received more than 500 good ballots."
The number of non-received ballots and confusion regarding what to do has Madrid and voters concerned.
"We use the same printer as larger counties," Madrid said. "They specified blue return envelopes and we specified white return envelopes. The printer used blue for everybody."
Not knowing the return envelopes would be blue, Archuleta County instructions included with the ballot mailout advise voters to place their ballots within a white return envelope in order to return them. Voters are confused when they discover no white return envelope enclosed within their packet.
"I'll bet I've had 50 calls already from voters saying they have no return envelope," Madrid said. "They do. They should put their ballot in the official blue envelope and return it to us."
A second problem surrounds the secrecy sleeve included in the ballot packet. The sleeve is designed to cover the ballot so those handling it before counting cannot see how the voter marked the ballot.
"The secrecy sleeve folds over the ballot, it won't wrap around," Madrid said. "That's all the voters need to do, just fold the secrecy sleeve containing instructions over the ballot and insert them in the blue return envelope."
At least one more issue confusing voters concerns a state requirement that the voter's birthdate and signature be recorded on the outside of the return envelope. The birthdate and signature are compared with voter registration records in order to verify the authenticity of the vote.
"Some people are covering or blacking out their birthdate and signature," Madrid said. "If that happens, the vote cannot be counted. Any ballot that does not contain the voter's signature and birthdate on the outside of the return envelope cannot be counted."
All active voters should have received ballots by now, Madrid said. Those who have questions or who have not received ballots are invited to call the elections office, 264-5632 or 264-2950.
"All ballots that the postal department is unable to deliver are being returned to us," Madrid said. "We've already had about 200 returned. Those who think they are entitled to a ballot, but have not received one, need to come down to the county clerk's office. If we have their ballot and everything is in order, they'll be able to vote here."
Some voters are calling in concerning damaged ballots, Madrid said. They believe that because they call the problem is solved, according to Madrid, and then they mail the damaged ballot.
The computers counting ballots cannot count damaged ballots, Madrid said. Voters who receive damaged ballots must bring the damaged ballots to the clerk's office and exchange them for undamaged ballots.
Election day is from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. Nov. 6. The poll closes at 7 p.m. and the counting begins.
Sour note at Piano Creek
The music has ended, for the moment. To be replaced by the sound of applause from some sectors of the community. The Piano Creek development in the East Fork Valley just east of the Archuleta County line, has suspended operations. Work has ceased.
For the moment. This project had a controversial beginning, following on the heels of a failed attempt more than a decade ago to put a ski area on private and public lands in the valley.
The ski area proposal drew flak from a variety of conservationists, environmentalists and longtime residents of the area: people who vigorously rejected the idea of a beautiful valley spoiled.
Opposition continued when the Piano Creek project was proposed for the private land once part of the ski area project.
The project began as an idea in the mind of an entrepreneur - a salesman. Dreams obviously outshone reality; the sales pitch outdistanced financial acumen.
Problems began as the nature of the development surfaced and its attendant PR offended many people. It was to be a private reserve, shared by a limited number of investors. A gated community, if you will, in the middle of a gorgeous valley in the San Juans. A valley many people had grown to love and were accustomed to traveling in unimpeded fashion.
The developer was oblivious to opposition, to history, to financial reality.
In the course of promotion, an outrageous tale was invented: about Piano Creek - a tributary that does not exist, and never did. That story told it all.
Money was collected as reservations were made by prospective buyers, by "founders," and best-case cost figures were generated concerning what it would take to complete the project. A dilapidated building was purchased on Lewis Street in downtown Pagosa Springs and converted into luxurious office space, at huge expense. A fleet of vehicles was parked in the lot.
The problem: plans could not be completed for the estimated cost. The project was undercapitalized. Changes were made, in plans, in the numbers of participants and in management, and still the plane couldn't leave the ground. When it came time, too many of the investors would not or could not convert reservations into hard commitments: a certain percentage of commitment was needed and was not met. There was not sufficient money to take the project to the bank. Reservation money was returned with interest.
Now, plans are on hold. A group of 14 investors who bought out the Balcor American Express share of the land is part of a larger concern with Illinois businessman Dan McCarthy, who retains a 60-percent plus share in the ranch land.
Read between the lines: it is easy to imagine the group of 14 investors struggling among themselves to determine their course, with McCarthy sitting back, waiting to talk. When the dust clears, some day, another plan will be on the boards.
No doubt, there will be groups and individuals who opposed the Piano Creek plan who will attempt to take credit for the demise of this project. They will be wrong. Some of the problems with Piano Creek were internal; some were, no doubt, a matter of bad timing, a sagging market and the fears of tremulous investors. There will be those who will mistakenly take credit for preserving a "pristine" valley that has not been pristine for a hundred years.
And they are mistaken if they think another plan will not be conceived for the land on the East Fork.
Plans will be developed, and they might not be as kind to the land as the plan for Piano Creek. With new ideas, controversy will develop again concerning the rights of private property owners and the validity of public opinion to affect those rights.
Those who were saddened by the move to develop parts of the East Fork Valley can breathe easy now, but should be aware of what is, and what is not viable under the law.
The music will begin again.
Some differing types of uniforms
I no longer go straight to the sports section of the daily newspapers before reading the news in section 1. Since Septenber 11, I go straight to what's happening in Afghanistan and Pakistan, and in Palestine and Israel. As with most wars, the war on terrorism is producing some captivating photographs.
One such photo on Oct. 18, showed some young survivors in Kabul who were searching among the rubble of their bombed-out home. Unlike demolished homes in England or Germany that folks saw in news photos during World War II, this home in the capital city of Afghanistan was built of handmade adobe-like bricks. Atop the stuccoed adobe brick walls, rather than milled lumber, logs had served as ceiling joists and rafters. Layers of dirt had formed the home's sod roof. There were no dangling electrical wires, twisted plumbing pipes nor any shattered glass.
On the front page of the business section of the Oct. 19 Rocky Mountain News, a color photo showed a serpentine line of businessmen waiting to make it through the security check points at the air-conditioned Denver International Airport. Most were wearing suits, dress shirts and ties. One fellow was using his cell phone while shuffling through a handful of notes. Another had his pager clipped on his belt so that he could be contacted at a moment's notice. A third appeared to have the carrying case of a laptop computer strapped over his shoulder. The photo was a stark contrast to one published in the Rocky's Oct. 22 edition. An Oct. 22 black-and-white photo showed endless lines of Afghan men and boys wearing robes and turbans as they stood in the sun alongside the tangled rolls of a barbed-wire barrier near a security check point at a dusty border crossing in Chaman, Pakistan.
The businessmen in Denver apparently were hoping to board a jet in order to fly to a business appointment. The refugees in Chaman apparently had walked long distances in hopes of finding sanctuary in Pakistan and reaching safety.
Just as the photos depict the differing disruptions in the everyday lives of American and Afghan citizens, photos involving U.S. defenders and their Taliban counterparts likewise provide some interesting contrasts.
Folks are starting to see combat uniforms that Americans are not used to seeing during wartime. Now, along with the fatigue-clad soldiers who are serving in combat zones, folks are seeing the white clinical jackets and surgical gloves of medical personnel from the Office of Attending Physicians in Washington, D.C., walking the halls of the Hart Senate Office Building in response to an anthrax attack perpetrated by some as-yet-unknown terrorists. Nor are folks used to seeing hazardous materials technicians wearing air-tight, one-piece uniforms with sealed boots, gloves and hooded oxygen masks as they walk through government buildings to combat the war on terrorism.
Of all of the contrasts I've seen thus far, it's the black turbans worn by the Taliban militia as they raise their automatic assault rifles and hand-held Stinger missile launchers that most catch my attention. The turbans appear to be simple pieces of cloth that are folded, wrapped and tucked atop the wearers' heads as they shout their joint hatred against all that America stands for and against its Jewish allies in Israel. The cloth turbans bring to mind the starched white cloths that were rolled to form cone-shaped head coverings that earlier American terrorists known as Ku Klux Klansmen wore as they marched with hand-held torches and lynching ropes while shouting their hatred against Black and Jewish Americans and what America stands for. I'm thankful that those who used to throw gasoline bottle bombs into the homes and businesses of innocent, defenseless Americans lacked the ability to produce anthrax.
Know you are loved and please keep us in your prayers.
91 years ago
Taken from Pagosa Springs New Era of October 21, 1910
Dr. Hinrichs-Lacy is now at home and prepared to do dental work.
This week M.C. Hyler purchased the Gaylord meat market and will continue the business as heretofore.
Lo, the poor Indian is between the devil and the deep, if he puts his claim in the hands of an agent he gets skinned, if he waits for the government to give him what is coming to him he doesn't get anything at all, but call at Lowenstein's for a square deal and the closest prices in clothing, shoes, etc. Your money's worth at - Lowenstein's.
This week's storm has been worth thousands of dollars to Archuleta County. And greater than any financial benefit, it has done much for the health of this community.
75 years ago
Taken from SUN files of October 29, 1926
Mrs. Thelma Houser is the new librarian at the public library, conducted by the Women's Civic Club.
The Seniors will give their annual party Friday night. They have invited as their guests the members of the school board, the teachers, the entire high school and the eighth grade.
John H. Lattin, proprietor of the San Juan Livery & Transfer Company, last week purchased the livery barn building and property from the owner, L.F. Woolery.
The little daughter of Doll Pargin of Piedra was brought to Durango yesterday (Sunday) suffering from appendicitis. An operation was performed by Dr. J.C. Darling this morning, and the little girl is reported to be getting along nicely.
50 years ago
Taken from SUN files of October 26, 1951
As the 1951 hunting season draws to a close it appears as if it has been one of the largest in numbers of hunters and numbers of animals killed ever to be held in this area. Three arrests for violations of hunting laws were made this past week, all for illegal tagging of animals. The weather this year has been unusually fine for big game hunting, with clear, crisp nights and warm days.
Every seat in the high school auditorium was filled with interested fathers, mothers and teachers at the first Parent Teacher Association meeting held Thursday evening.
The local chapter of the Red Cross is cooperating in the drive to provide Christmas parcels for soldiers this year. The presents are to be given to soldiers who are at sea on Christmas day en route to or from foreign lands.
25 years ago
Taken from SUN files of October 21, 1976
The mercury dropped down to 10 above at the U.S. Weather Observation Station Tuesday morning of this week. The area is still free of any snow, except on the very high mountain peaks and in the high mountain canyons and valleys.
No fatalities have been reported in this area as the 1976 big game season nears the end of its first week. The number of hunters is down quite a bit from a year ago, hunting is hard, but many hunters have been successful.
Local governmental units have just about completed work on proposed budgets. Indications are that all will be spending more money next year. There are more people in town, in the county, in the schools, and this creates more expense and more problems.
Members of the Pagosa Springs High School class of 1982 are planning their 20-year reunion to be held next summer.
Help is needed in locating the following classmates: Brenda Alexander, Bruce Buhler, Ernie Caldera, Mary Callan, John Childers, Keven Cummings, John Davies, Andy Garcia, Leland Hamblin, Cliff Hill, Larry Holder, Steven Jaramillo, Kamma Kamm, Keith LaMay, Allen Madril, Melvin Martinez, Vicki Martinez, Jeff McBride, Seldon McIntosh, Terri Millard, Tammy Moore, Chris Neel, Traci Ramsey, Audrey Reeves, John Sabel, Drew Teinert, Camilla Titsworth, JoAnn Villarreal, Michael Walker and Gary Wilcox.
If you have information on one of these classmates, contact JoJo Sorenson Charles, Box 1022, Pagosa Springs, CO 81147, phone 970-264-2718, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
A Citizens Road Advisory Committee recently appointed by the county commissioners adopted goals and a work program at its first meeting last week.
Members of the committee appointed from each portion of the county are charged with advising the commissioners on how to "better maintain all county roads."
County Commissioner Alden Ecker, road and bridge department liaison for the board of county commissioners, conducted Friday's meeting.
The purposes of the committee, according to Ecker are to provide citizen liaison with the county commissioners, provide advice on how to better maintain all county roads, and establish road classification divisions.
An additional task was added at the Tuesday meeting of commissioners when that board failed to adopt a resolution calling for the general acceptance as public of roads dedicated to the county.
Ecker and Gene Crabtree, chairman of the board of county commissioners, favored adoption of the resolution. Commissioner Bill Downey opposed.
Involved are roads located within subdivisions created before the state forced counties to adopt subdivision regulations. Also involved are subdivisions created since the state mandate. A number of conditions are involved including county acceptance of the subdivision plats, but specific refusal to accept roads within the plats as public.
The resolution proposes county acceptance on behalf of the public of "any and all offers of dedication of public roads, easements or rights of way, contained on or within any plat, plan, permit or other legal document, which contain a legal offer to dedicate a road, easement, or right of way to the public, are hereby accepted on behalf of the public."
Acceptance as public does not mean acceptance into a county system of roads or acceptance for county maintenance, according to the resolution and statements made by all of the commissioners Tuesday.
Ecker and Crabtree argue that people in areas without benefit of public roads are in a bind, unable to form any of the various districts needed to finance maintenance of their roads. They argue the county should accept the roads as public as a first step to help the people bring the roads up to standard and maintain them.
Downey argues that people need help, but first the county should discover why earlier commissioners rejected the roads. He argues that a blanket acceptance is risky with unforeseen circumstances, pointing out that roads outside of platted subdivisions, such as Catchpole Road, will not be included.
Mary Weiss, the county attorney, suggested that roads within subdivisions be considered on a case by case basis, allowing time to gather facts concerning the history of each proposal.
In the end, the commissioners decided to refer the question to the Citizens Road Advisory Committee, asking that organization to prepare a list of roads to be considered for public acceptance. No vote was taken on the proposed resolution.
As a first step in translating road committee appointments into action, the county was divided into four districts by the committee. At least two committee members represent each district.
Representing District 1 are Lou Anne Baker, Dennis Walker, and Dan Rivera. District 1 is located generally west of a line running north to south down Piedra Road, Turkey Springs and Cat Creek roads, then swinging slightly east as it continues south through the junction of Trujillo and Montezuma roads to the New Mexico state line.
Allan Bunch, Jim Carson, and Bill Ralston represent District 2, envisioned as a core area district containing the metropolitan areas of the county. District 2 generally includes Fairfield Pagosa and related subdivisions, Pagosa Springs, Holiday Acres, Continental Estates, Loma Linda, and subdivisions in the core area surrounded by the other districts.
District 3 is represented by J.R. Ford and Troy Ross. The area generally included in District 3 is in the northeastern part of the county generally east of Piedra Road, north of Pagosa Springs, and north of the Blanco River Valley.
Ike Oldham and Debbie Shaw represent District 4, generally located in the southeastern part of the county. Included are the upper and lower Blanco River residential areas, Chromo and the Navajo River settlements, Edith and Coyote Park, and along Montezuma Road westerly to its junction with Trujillo Road.
Pagosa Springs' temporary sign ordinance amendment is in effect, and getting some mixed reaction this hunting season.
Mark Garcia, town building administrator, said 16 temporary sign permits have been issued by the Town of Pagosa Springs since enforcement of the new rules began in July. Of those, four are hunting-related advertising. "God Bless America" banners are also included. Another six temporary signs are still being investigated by the town.
"We've met with some opposition, but after two or three visits everyone has decided to comply," Garcia said. No permit is required to fly the American flag.
Prior to May of 2000, temporary signs, including banners and pennants not permanently affixed to a structure, fell through a loophole in town law.
As a result, numerous banners popped up to advertise special events, or products. Citizen complaint and observation by town staff and board members eventually placed the matter before the town board. The trustees moved to closed the loophole in May, amending the sign ordinance to require all temporary signs to be permitted.
"Our town is comprised of many business and business needs," Garcia said. "We have to balance that against maintaining a town that is appealing and functional to visitors and citizens of Pagosa Springs."
Under the revised ordinance, permitted temporary signs can be displayed free of charge for 14 days in each calendar year. After that, a fee of $1 per square foot of sign per month is charged until it's removed. The maximum amount of time any temporary sign can be displayed in a calendar year is ten weeks.
The real sticking point, however, has been in relation to aggregate square footage. Under the amended ordinances, temporary signs are included in the total aggregate square footage of signage a business is allowed to have. Any sign that would push the business over the allowed aggregate - based on frontage - is denied a permit.
"If they have maxed out with permanent signage, they've no access to putting up temporary signs," Garcia said. To give some flexibility to the ordinance in these cases, the town has allowed businesses to place temporary signs over permanent signs.
"All in all, it's going well," Garcia said. "I think the town looks cleaner and less cluttered with the removal of temporary signs."
County commissioners here devoted much of their attention this past week to budget preparation. Next week promises more of the same.
Tuesday night at 7, the commissioners met in regular session in the commissioner meeting room. At least until the end of the year, the commissioners will continue to meet Tuesday nights at 7 during the fourth week of the month. Meetings will be at 9 a.m. the remaining weeks of the month.
County endorsement of various grant applications constituted a major agenda subject Tuesday night. The commissioners endorsed grant applications being submitted by the county veterans service officer, Southwest Community Resources, and Colorado Housing.
Testimony supporting the veterans service grant was given by Andy Fautheree, the county officer. Fautheree is asking for a $20,000 grant from the Colorado Veterans Trust Fund. The money will be spent to buy a van used to transport Archuleta County veterans to Veteran's Administration hospitals.
In Archuleta County, 264 veterans are enrolled in the healthcare program, Fautheree said. Archuleta County veterans made 1,386 visits to Farmington veteran health facilities, according to Fautheree. The new vehicle will replace an existing, high-mileage vehicle.
Southwest Community Resources is seeking $60,000 through the Colorado Community Development Block Grant program to fund administrative expenses incurred through the local Housing Rehabilitation Loan Program. The administration is connected with low income housing in Archuleta, Dolores, La Plata, Montezuma, and San Juan counties.
Colorado Housing is asking for a $200,000 grant with which to purchase sites for 20 housing units in Archuleta, La Plata, and Montezuma counties. Colorado Housing constructs low income single family housing units in conjunction with qualified buyers.
Wolf Creek Trail Blazers is applying for two grants. The larger grant requests $50,000 from Colorado State Trails Committee. A 50-percent match is promised by the Trail Blazers. The money will be used to purchase a groomer for Archuleta County.
A second grant from Colorado State Trails amounting to $15,000 is being sought by the Trail Blazers. Matching funds of 25 percent are promised by the club. This money, also, is intended for purchasing a groomer and maintenance for motorized and non-motorized winter recreation in Archuleta County.
Approval and endorsement was given the county planning department to spend grant funds for a Development Impact Report defining the economic impacts of the proposed Reserve at Pagosa Peaks subdivision. The study is intended to show if developments have a positive or negative impact on the county and service entities. Reserve at Pagosa Peaks was selected because of its large size and proximity to other developments. Rural Planning Institute of Durango will research and prepare the report. The State Department of Local Affairs is funding 85 percent of the cost. Archuleta County's match is $2,219.
In other business, the commissioners:
€ Reviewed a proposal that the county contract for wildlife predator control services at a cost with an upper limit ranging between $10,500 and 70 percent of $24,500. In the past, the county has shared expenses for this program with La Plata County or with La Plata and Montezuma counties. The new program calls for Archuleta County to go it alone. No action was taken because the cost ceiling of $10,500 or 70 percent of $24,500 seemed ambiguous to the commissioners
€ Agreed to waive dump fees connected with the Community United Methodist Church community services program during the holiday season
€ Approved a contract and allocation agreement with the Department of Social Services allowing the allocation of $60,000 from Colorado Works funds for use in the county transportation department
€ Approved a final plat for Quintana minor impact subdivision near Arboles
€ Approved a final replat connected with Crowley Ranch Phase III
€ Approved variances for construction and access at Parelli's International Studies Center.
Hunter economic impact on Archuleta County is producing mixed results as the series of seasons move into a new phase.
The second combined rifle season ends at sunset tomorrow. The third combined rifle season starts Saturday and lasts through Nov. 9. A final combined rifle season runs from Nov. 10 through Nov. 14.
Three local license sales agencies provide varied reports concerning license sales leading up to the third season. Two firms that specialize in game processing for hunters say sales are down.
The answers to at least two questions could negatively influence hunting economic impact locally. Did the world Trade Center disaster cause hunters to stay home? The second question is, has the state decision to raise out-of-state license fees significantly caused hunters to stay home?
The number of hunters is down, but retail sales are up, according to Larry Fisher, owner of the Ski and Bow Rack, Pagosa's largest license sales agency.
"It's going really well," Fisher said. "I'm tickled pink. The number of licenses sold is down 40 percent, but retail sales are holding. It's a little early to tell, but I am tickled pink."
Hunters are not looking for a particular hot item, according to Fisher.
"There is no hot item this year," Fisher said. "Sometimes it's sleeping bags or other times it's tents. A lot of times it's whatever they forgot to bring from home. They always buy a lot of blaze orange, ammunition, game calls, tent patching gear. They mostly want good quality."
Across town at Sports Emporium, owner Art Million says license sales and sales in general are down.
"We're down about 25 percent in the number of hunters and in retail sales," Million said. "They buy a lot of blaze orange, binoculars, and T-shirts. Pictures of elk and wild animals are big on T-shirts, along with the name Pagosa Springs. They buy lots of ammo of every caliber, grain, and weight you can imagine."
Next season may even be slower, Million said, because several hunters have said they can't afford to come back next year.
"The number of hunters may be down 40 percent, according to Tony Stephens at Ponderosa Do-it-Best, but dollars from license sales are almost dead even. The even dollar amount is attributed by Stephens to the cost per license increase.
"I can't tell you about retail sales," Stephens said. "It's a little too early to crunch those numbers."
Information on hunter success in the field is also mixed.
Fisher says the feedback he's received is encouraging. Million said he thinks hunter success is down, and Stephens said he doesn't have good information.
Game processing in Archuleta County is conducted at the Chimney Rock Restaurant and The Buck Stops here.
"It's down," says Louise Jaegger of Chimney Rock. "We're only doing one-half the processing when compared with past years. We've sold very few out-of-state licenses. Hunters say they aren't coming back next year; they can't afford it."
"It's not been real good" says Bernie Schuchart of The Buck Stops Here. "The first rifle season was not good, the second season about average. We're seeing a lot of deer with big body weights and big antlers. The elk take is below average. The number of bear was good during archery season, but it falls off later in the season."
Sometimes it's not the corn that's as high as an elephant's eye, it could be noxious weeds.
They grow profusely in Pagosa Country, things like leafy spurge and toad flax, taking over fields that ordinarily would be devoted to grazing.
How do you stop the infernal infidels of the plant world?
Goats, specifically a class of cashmeres.
And where do you find them?
Contact Lani Lamming, known as "The Goat Lady."
Pagosa area rancher Randall Davis had the weed problem and heard a presentation by Lamming extolling the virtues of her goats as a cure for what ails weed-infested properties throughout the west.
When he realized his spraying program was doing little more than costing him money, Davis contacted Lamming for goat services.
On Sunday night, 2,100 cashmeres were unloaded on Davis' ranch at the head of Cemetery Road and they began immediately prowling the weed fields for sustenance.
Lamming was not available for interview, but the ramrods of her operation talked with The SUN Tuesday morning.
They're not the gnarled, leathery old herders one might imagine. Leslie Haug is a Washington, D.C. resident who was interning with an anti-pesticide organization when she met Lamming. Each was impressed with the other and when Lamming invited Haug to come west, she accepted.
Joseph Kuckla is a native of Pennsylvania, a quiet, well-spoken man who knows his goats like you know the back of your hand. The pair, along with a team of well-trained herd dogs, keep the goats under control as they browse the target areas during the day. At night, they are returned to an area enclosed by an electric fence.
The firm, officially know as Ewe4ic Ecological Services, has no specific base location, traveling continually from one job to another.
"Our headquarters is where we are operating at the time," said Kuckla. "When we move, we move to the next job."
"Lani is regularly on the road looking for new customers for our service," said Haug. "We never know until the trucks arrive for the animals exactly where we will find ourselves next."
What do the goats accomplish?
"First," said Kuckla, "They'll eat almost anything, with the exception of stinging nettle. They'll even eat some forms of cactus."
"We came here from a job on the eastern plains near Limon," said Haug. "The goats were clearing land, consuming poison hemlock, Canada thistle, leafy spurge and hound's tongue."
"They'll eat some grass, too," she acknowledged, "but very little compared to the weeds property owners want eliminated."
Asked if it might not be too late in the season to begin a goat program with weeds already gone to seed, both said no. "The goats' mouths are designed so that they'll eat the seeds and digest them with little in the way of seed expelled in the goat excrement to provide a birthing site for new weeds."
In effect, Kuckla said, "the goats eat their way into a new field for the owner. They consume the weed, their hooves constantly till the soil, and their excrement fertilizes."
"The natural grasses," said Haug, "have seeded the soil already but it is too hard and overrun by the weeds to sprout. The goat action lets that happen after the weeds have been removed."
"The problem is not the grass," said Kuckla, "its the soil itself. It has been so compacted by the weeds that it is not healthy enough to overcome them and allow the grasses to grow. That's where our service comes in."
Davis said he's not sure how long the herd will be on his property, but the outcome "has to be at least as good if not better" than the spraying he's been doing.
"It got to the point," he said, "where it was like spraying a forest fire with a squirt gun. You got no effect at all."
Haug said Lamming is investigating ways of harvesting the goat hair, too, as a supplemental income. While it is not suitable for the normal cashmere sweaters and other clothing, she said, "it is excellent as a lining, in scarves, and possibly gloves. Lani looks at the possibility as a way of recycling the weeds."
While the business is constantly on the move, Haug said, they usually winter in a warmer climate where weeds - as they do everywhere - provide both sustenance for the goats and work for the Ewe4ic team.
The goats seem to relish the trips. They always have a new food source. And they're not strangers to the herd team.
"We know them all by sound or sight," said Haug.
"And they know us," added Kuckla. "Sometimes they seem to know I'm going to yell at them before I actually do it . . . and get out of the trouble they're into on their own."
Davis isn't sure how much the service will cost him, but feels it will work, based on the results he's seen from other locations where the Goat Lady has ranged her herd.
Pagosa Springs native Allie Bailey is one of four new interns selected by the University of Georgia Marine Extension Service to participate in an unusual education program.
The 50-week intern program, now in its twelfth year, is designed to give prospective marine science educators a feel for what teaching environmental education is like in "real life."
Along the way, these students are able to develop organizational and technical skills that will aid them in their career choices.
Bailey, selected from a pool of over 30 applicants, graduated with a BS in biology from University of North Carolina at Wilmington in 2001. Her participation in the intern program is funded through the Coastal Zone Management Program, a federal/state partnership.
Initially, she will undergo a three-month training period where she will serve as field and lab assistant for the full-time educators at University of Georgia's Marine Extension Service Education Center and Aquarium on Skidaway Island. Thereafter, she will begin teaching assignments under the supervision of education faculty and staff. Additionally, she will help maintain the aquarium.
Bailey said she first imagined a career in marine education at 16 when she attended a week-long camp in the Florida Keys and swam with dolphins. Tutoring others in college gave her a sense of what it's like to be an educator.
"This intern program," she said, "is a wonderful opportunity to combine my love of teaching with marine biology."
United Blood Services has scheduled two blood draws in Pagosa Springs, the first from 2 to 6:30 p.m. Oct. 30, at Mountain Heights Baptist Church, 1044 Park Avenue.
The second is scheduled 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Nov. 5 at Pine Ridge Extended Care Center, 119 Bastille Drive.
United Blood Services, the community blood center for southwest Colorado, reminds potential donors the holiday season is about to dawn and blood supplies are generally lower at that time of year because people are more involved in day-to-day activities and have less time to donate.
Identification is required for all donors.
With primitive seasons and the first rifle season complete, Colorado's deer and elk hunters across the state are reporting moderate success.
John Ellenberger, big game coordinator for the Colorado Division of Wildlife, said field reports on success rates during the primitive seasons were standard. But those hunters who made the extra effort to go deep into Colorado's outback, knew the areas they were hunting and applied sound hunting skills were harvesting deer and elk, he said.
"In general, the harvest seemed kind of spotty," Ellenberger said, although hunters have been faring better than the norm in game management units 32 northwest of Rifle and 42 south of Rifle.
Ellenberger said hunting pressure during the primitive seasons was down, in part because fewer licenses were sold. But fewer numbers of hunters can be both a blessing and a curse to hunters; less pressure means the animals will be more likely to follow their normal patterns, but it also means the animals will be less likely to be pushed by other hunters.
One thing hunters should remember during the upcoming rifle seasons is that chains and four-wheel drive vehicles might be necessary to access areas where animals are congregating, Ellenberger said.
"At some of the higher elevations around the state, we recently had approximately 10 inches of snow, which made roads muddy for hunters trying to get where the elk are," Ellenbeger said. "Rifle hunters will need to be prepared. Four-wheel drive and chains are almost a mainstay in the later seasons."
Van Graham, area terrestrial biologist for Grand Junction, said he saw some hunters struggling to get to their hunting locations. The precipitation made for sloppy roads during the warm part of the day, Graham said.
Field officers reported low pressure during the first limited season. The harvest is high in areas where most hunters report at least seeing elk. Hunters in game management unit 33 on the west end of the White River are reporting good success in taking cow elk.
Graham said hunters are still hearing elk bugling south of Rifle, and for that reason might want to use cow calls as part of their strategy in that area. Many hunters there also said they saw deer, which makes the outlook for those with a deer tag for the second season positive. Still, hunters there should be prepared for what Mother Nature has to throw at them.
"For the second season, hunters should be prepared for cold temps and muddy conditions," Graham said.
Harvest rates were not as high in the Aspen, Glenwood Springs and Vail areas, according to Gene Byrne, terrestrial biologist for the Glenwood Springs area.
"Hunting success appeared to be lower than anticipated due to the very muddy road conditions that existed prior to opening day," Byrne said. "This has prevented some hunters from accessing remote areas in the steeper terrain."
But Byrne expects things to rally during the second season. "The hunting conditions should improve for the second season when colder temperature could freeze up the road and improve access," Byrne said.
"Also, elk will more likely be in the lower elevations, and increased hunting pressure should get them moving again and increase hunter success."
Andy Holland, terrestrial biologist for the Hot Sulphur Springs area, said weather played only a minor role there.
"The hunting pressure is moderate to light," Holland said. "Most places are seeing hunters, but not in great numbers. The snow has melted off of the south and west slopes below 10,000 feet. North slopes still have some snow below that, but all of the roads are in pretty good condition from warm, windy weather."
Chuck Wagner, area wildlife manager in Monte Vista, said there should be plenty of elk left for those hunting the later seasons.
"Hunting pressure and weather does not appear to have moved elk much," Wagner said. "Most hunters report seeing elk, mainly in the spruce-fir forest at elevations between 8,500 and 11,500 feet. Numbers of hunters appear to be about the same for the most part, with several areas where pressure is down and only one area where pressure is up. Harvest has been about the same as last year, with some decent bulls being taken. No one has taken any really big bulls yet."
Bob Davies, terrestrial biologist in Colorado Springs, said elk are scattered and in the dark timber in south-central Colorado. Conditions are dry in that area.
From Pueblo through the Wet Mountains (the Sangre de Cristos all the way to the New Mexico state line), elk harvests are down slightly. A few bulls are being taken at higher elevations and on private property and elk are scattered. Pressure has decreased by 25 percent from last year. Hunters camping in this area are advised to take precautions with bears and secure their camps to minimize conflicts.
Scott Wait, terrestrial biologist in the San Juan Basin, said hunters there during the first rifle season have been doing well.
"There have been good elk harvests in both the Dolores and San Juan basins, a few more bulls than cows, but good cow harvests for people with either-sex licenses," Wait said. "Elk are mostly in the 9,500-10,500 elevation range, in thick cover, small groups and they are not moving voluntarily."
Deer and elk hunters in portions of Middle Park and the San Luis Valley (GMUs 6, 16, 17, 79, 80 and 171, elk and deer, and GMUs 18, 28, 37 and 371, just deer) are being asked to submit the heads of animals they harvest during the upcoming rifle seasons. The Division of Wildlife will test the heads for chronic wasting disease as part of its ongoing surveillance efforts.
The population has increased in Pagosa Springs and Archuleta County and construction has carried on almost unabated.
But the enrollment for funding purposes in the schools of Archuleta District 50 Joint is only minimally higher this year.
Nancy Schutz, district business manager, released the enrollment figures Wednesday showing total funded enrollment of 1,572 this year, up just nine from last year.
These unofficial figures indicate only slight differences by grade from last year, with the largest decrease being in the freshman class, down from 152 to 123 and the biggest increase - 24 - coming in the seventh grade.
Examination of the figures should be done remembering that the high school data includes the alternative school enrollments and that a number of students districtwide are only halftime (for state funding purposes) and therefore the figures will not directly represent actual head counts at some class levels.
In the elementary school, kindergarten enrollment is down three, from 103 to 100; first grade is down two, from 110 to 108; second grade down four from 111 to 107, third grade up two from 113 to 115; fourth grade down 13 from 124 to 111.
In the intermediate school, fifth grade figures indicate an increase from 111 to 131 and sixth grade enrollment is down 22 from 138 to 116.
In the junior high seventh grade figures show an increase from 114 to 138 and the eighth grade a dip from 126 to 124.
At Pagosa Springs High School, Schutz said, again keeping in mind the figures include the alternative school, freshman totals are down 29 from 152 to 123; sophomore enrollment is up from 138 to 150; junior levels are up from 118 to 128; and senior statistics show an increase from 99 to 113.
Overall, elementary school total enrollment was 541, intermediate school at 247, junior high at 262 and the high school at 514.
Numbers have been a large part of hospital district headlines over the past several months, especially those numbers attached to dollar signs.
There have been mill levy numbers, deficit numbers, fee increases, a credit line, a financial plan, percentages of this or that, budget and line items. But beneath all the dollar signs are another set of numbers.
These have no dollar signs, but represent the pressure a steady population growth over the past 10 years has placed on the Upper San Juan Hospital District.
According to the 2002 financial plan information prepared for the district board, in 1990-91 Emergency Medical Services had four teams of responders. Three full-time and one part-time EMT made up the office staff assisted by about 30 additional responders on-call when a page went out. They responded to between 200-250 calls that year. By 1996, annual calls jumped over 600 and full-time staff grew by one. Part-time staff dropped to 20-25.
Paramedics came on the scene for the first time in 1997, and calls continued to increase, climbing into the 800 range. In 2000, with the current staff that includes six paramedics and a list of around 50 part-timers, EMS responded to over 1,000 calls.
As of Oct. 9, the total numbers of calls this year sat at 666, EMS operations manager Rod Richardson said, four calls above last year's pace. Predictions show those numbers could climb over 1,200 before 2002.
Over at the Dr. Mary Fisher Clinic, Laura Rome, clinic administrator, said the numbers of patients seen by the doctors are also on the rise. Last year's figures show a total of 10,256 patient visits. This year, patient contacts by doctors, nurse practitioners and nurses stand at 8,681 through September. With doctors attempting to see three more patients a day to help boost revenue, that total is expected to reach near 1,200 by the first of the year.
Of the EMS calls, almost 60 percent require patient transportation to a medical facility, according to district reports. Nearly 30 percent of calls result in a patient being taken to Mercy Medical Center in Durango. Another 13 percent of patients are transported to the Dr. Mary Fisher Medical Center locally. On that same track, 13 percent of calls result in the patient being treated on scene and 27 percent of calls result in no treatment or refusal of treatment.
Breaking calls down by age and time-of-day shows that 50 percent of calls cover "working age" people between 18 and 65 and happen between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Getting even more specific, about 40 percent of EMS calls are for people 50 and older.
Over the same decade that the number of calls to 911 increased so dramatically, the county's annual growth rate jumped to 6.5 percent. According to the Colorado Office of Demography, that rate made Archuleta County the second fastest growing county statewide between 1994 and 1998.
With seasonal visitors added in, the district estimates local population could be as high as 15,000 during certain times of the year.
Before ending this tour of the numbers, distance should also be considered. Emergency Medical Services personnel respond to all of Archuleta County, 1,600 square miles, plus areas in Hinsdale and Mineral counties.
In the 10/18/01, page 1 hospital district story, a name was spelled wrong. Dan Aupperle is the second at-large member of the district manager screening committee. The SUN apologizes for the error.
No one in Pagosa Country will need rose-colored glasses in order to maintain an optimistic outlook for the coming week. Forecasters predict mostly clear skies and warm temperatures through next Tuesday.
"Your skies will be mostly sunny and warmer," said Gary Chancy, a forecaster from the National Weather Service office in Grand Junction.
Temperatures should be slightly warmer than last week, topping between 55 and 65 degrees, Chancy said, and bottoming between 25 and 35 degrees.
A chance for moisture might move into the area during the mid-week when prevailing winds shift from a westerly to a southwesterly direction, Chancy said.
The long-range forecast covering the coming winter calls for temperatures warmer than normal and precipitation hovering around normal, according to Chancy.
High temperatures last week ranged between 65 and 70 degrees with an average high reading of 68 degrees. Low temperatures ranged between 29 and 31 degrees with an average low reading of 30 degrees. The thermometer dropped below freezing every night of the week.
Two battalions of American Marines were authorized by the Second Continental Congress on Nov. 10, 1775. Since that beginning the United States Marine Corps has continued to grow, fight and prosper.
The Marines have been present for duty in all the big wars of the United States from the American Revolution through the Kuwait Liberation, writing their names large at such places as Bladenburg, Guantanamo, Belleau Woods, Guadalcanal, Inchon and Khe Sanh. In between the big wars there have been the little wars, campaigns, showing the flag, protection of American lives and property, and humanitarian missions. "The Marines have landed" well over two hundred times in their 226 year history. After nearly every landing it could be reported with satisfaction that "the situation is well in hand."
Today as in the past, the Corps is perfectly confident that "If the Army and the Navy ever gaze on Heaven's scenes, they will find the streets are guarded by United States Marines."
In the Pagosa Springs area, active and former Marines, former Navy medical personnel, families and friends of Marines will celebrate the two hundred and twenty sixth birthday of the Marine Corps on Saturday, Nov. 10, at the Greenhouse Restaurant. The social hour will begin at 1730 (5:30 p.m. if you are not long on military time) and dinner at 1930. The celebration will include the traditional cutting of the birthday cake.
As seating is limited, reservations are required for dinner and must be made no later than Nov. 7.
For dinner reservations and information, please call Dick Akin, 731-3315, Bob Henley 731-9411, or Jack Gheisen 731-9453.
Brandon Smith and Levi are about five feet apart.
Smith bends down and calls the black and white dog who's looking around the small space with apparent curiosity. Levi moves toward Smith, tail up, ready for some attention.
In a quiet voice, Smith instructs his partner, Anne Rhett, seated a little apart with a clipboard and pencil, "That's normal."
A little later, Smith drops a metal food bowl from about three feet onto a wooden floor, the "crash test." Levi backs away slightly, eyes on Smith, uncertain of the loud noise. Another note is made on the chart.
Although he may not know it, Levi, one of several dogs waiting for adoption at the Pagosa Springs Humane Society is in the midst of a test - a behavior test. When complete, it gives the humane society matchmakers a tool for finding the perfect home.
"Finding the right pet for the right family, that's the whole point," Julie Paige, president of the humane society said. "The whole issue of temperament testing for cats and dogs is to provide a better product."
For the dogs
The temperament evaluation, a 10-minute battery of simple tests, is given to every dog who comes into the shelter, usually about five days after they arrive. The grace period, Brandon Smith said, gives the animal a chance to adjust to the new surroundings and overcome some of the initial fear.
Dogs are evaluated one-on-one in a small shed outside the main kennel building on the humane society grounds.
"For the most part we get a general understanding of how the dog will be with kids," Smith, said. "We just write down our suggestions and see what type of households would be good for this pet."
First, Smith, who was trained to perform the evaluations in February, checks the animal's general health. Teeth, eyes, ears, nostrils, coat condition and gait are all examined and any observations noted on a form.
Then, the behavior evaluation begins. The dog is asked to "come." Smith observes ears, eyes and tail movement as well as the general reaction, and Rhett makes notes that will be placed in the dog's file. Several possibilities are already laid out with definitions on the paperwork. Although Levi presents a normal response, the range of reaction includes: dominate, submissive or independent among others.
Next, he simply pets the dog, stroking all the way down its back, a social dominance check. As the tests continue, the dog gets a big hug, is laid on its back, has its fur tugged, is lifted onto its hind legs and meets a cat. In each case, any reaction is carefully noted.
The food bowl is used twice, once in the crash test, used to determine Levi's reaction to loud noises, and again in combination with the "assist-a-hand" to evaluate food-bowl aggression. In this test, a filled food bowl is placed before the dog, once it starts to eat, the "assist-a-hand," a plastic arm wielded by Smith, is used to pull the bowl away and generally get in the dog's face.
This test flushes out problems with biting or snapping over food, Smith said, a trait that can cause real problems. Levi does nothing but look at the hand and then up at Smith before returning to the bowl. The second time the hand gets in the way, Levi stops eating and goes to Smith, as if to say "What's wrong?," but makes no aggressive moves.
Finally, Levi is asked to respond to some simple commands, such as "sit" and "down," and the test is over. To complete the evaluation form, he will also be observed interacting with other dogs, a part of kennel life.
When all is said and done, Levi's temperament ranges from normal to slightly submissive. His reaction to the crash test and having his long fur tugged indicated that he would probably be fine with a family that included children, although he showed a slight hesitance to loud noise.
Other dogs, Smith said, prove to be more suited for adults only. Then, of course, there's an element of activity level. Certain adoptees are suited for people who are constantly on the go, and others prefer a nice lap and some peace and quiet. In a very few, aggressive behavior makes the animal impossible to adopt.
"We will work with them if they have a problem," he said. "We will not adopt out an unsafe dog. If there's big time aggression issues we will euthanize."
Smith and Rhett are both employees of the humane society and perform the temperament evaluations every Thursday. They work as a team to ensure safety and to provide the best possible observation of the animal during testing.
Cats are also temperament tested, although not so formally. As with dogs, evaluation sheets are available, but observations are made over several days instead of in several short tests and are made by shelter employees or volunteers coming in to socialize the cats.
Mary Ann Sayer, a humane society board member and volunteer who works especially with the society's feline borders, said some of the observations can include the cat's reaction to being held, touched on the ears, touched on the tail, or what toys it likes. General health is another aspect of the observation, and timing is important.
"When cats come into the shelter, you need to wait three, four, five days," she said, and behavior is always subject to change, especially when it comes to feral felines. Feral cats are defined as those that have been out in the wild for at least two generations. These are usually adopted out as barn cats.
Others that appear to be feral when they first arrive, can be reached, their behavior altered by the socialization volunteers.
One of the newest of these volunteers is Jenny Schoenborn. She started working with the feral cats in August after she helped safe-trap a family of five. The mother and four kittens came in hissing and spitting, and wouldn't let anyone near them, Schoenborn said. As time passed, some of the litter and the mother went into barn situations. One, a fluffy grey-colored kitten turned around completely, and is now waiting to be adopted as a house cat.
"He went from total fear to nibbling on my ears," Schoenborn said. "We really believe it came around because it was alone." Lazer had been separated to protect his health.
Schoenborn, a life-long cat lover, starts by offering the cats a little treat. Slowly, that can turn into play and human contact as the cats overcome fear, but that depends a lot on the animal's age.
Kittens, if found young enough, can usually be socialized into family pets. Adult cats are much less likely to change, Sayer said. A lot depends on the environment the animal is going into once it leaves the shelter as well.
"There's always, even after they go to a home, the opportunity to reevaluate the cats," she said.
Geese have been migrating through Pagosa for millions of years to land on lakes and ponds to rest and eat. We have McDonalds. As wetlands are drastically shrinking these new lakes are a welcome sight to them. It isn't their fault a geese heaven, complete with greens full of worms and lakes with tasty fish to eat, was created. The die is caste. The geese were here first and you can't get rid of them. Haurrah for the geese. I suggest golf boots.
I am writing this letter in response to Karl Isberg's extremely rude article, "Actors: bane of repressed man's existence," printed on Oct. 11, 2001.
Now, to quote Mr. Isberg, I am not a "overheated," "hysterical," "anxious," actor who expresses what I'm feeling by using creative "euphemisms." I am a true actor. Someone who is confident about clearly expressing their feelings and performs not for the "peppy, back patting question-and-answer session," but for the joy that being on stage and performing brings.
So here goes this honest actor. I am appalled at your lack of courtesy and unkind opinions Mr. Isberg.
The Music Boosters were not the only ones to represent Pagosa at the theater festival in Lake City. The Pagosa Players and Kings Men (PPKM) were also present. They performed a shortened version of Jack Sharkey's "I Take This Man."
PPKM is not by any means a fully "professional" company, but by no means are we "community" theater. If you look up the words professional and community you will find the following definitions.
Professional: 1. The body of persons in any such calling or occupation. 2. Engaged in, or worthy of high standards. 3. A person who does something with great skill. 4. A person who engages in some art for his livelihood.
Community: 1. Participation in common. 2. Similarity, likeness.
PPKM has a core group of individuals who put on and perform family shows. We are on our way to becoming a fully "professional" company. Just like the company from Telluride.
How selfish of Mr. Isberg not to use up some of the space in his article and mention PPKM.
Before last year's festival, in our newspaper article, PPKM was kind enough to mention that the Music Boosters would be in attendance. In addition, at the festival we participated in the standing ovation and encore that the Music Boosters received with all the energy and pride we could muster for a fellow, and I must say, excellent company.
I am hurt that Mr. Isberg could not extend the same courtesy to us this year.
How dare Mr. Isberg mock his wife's fellow actors by saying they are dishonest. When PPKM was told, "Congratulations, you were excellent!", it was sincere, not laced with the supposed two-faced, mumbo-jumbo that Mr. Isberg presumed was present.
Bottom line, Mr. Isberg, my feelings and the feelings of my fellow company members have been hurt.
We are not asking for your apology, we just want you to know how we honestly feel.
Brynn Mackensen and All the King's Men
(editor's note: I was not able to experience PPKM's performance or critique and, thus, could not comment on either. The point of the column, however, was not to promote one group over another, but rather to make light of the fragile and poignant egocentrism that characterizes some members of the theater community. Congratulations for being deemed "excellent." Thank you for your response.)
After 15 years at the Spanish Inn, I've finally decided to retire from the restaurant business. No, it's not for lack of patrons or lack of interest, it's just that these bones are tired.
I want to thank our community for all the patronage, support, laughs and irritations over the years.
The morning "Chamber of Comments" will surely be missed, as well as all of our loyal customers whose friendships I've enjoyed over the years. We will be closing at 8 p.m. on Friday and thereafter I just hope to be out fishing.
As a property owner in Pagosa Lakes for eleven years, I was compelled to write the Pagosa SUN about the FUSA fee we were being charged. In August, when I first asked for a letter to the people, I was unaware of the number of property owners, residents and non-residents who are very upset about this fee being assessed on their properties.
After you were so kind and placed my letter in the column, I have received many inquiries from local residents, but the non-residents who subscribe to your paper have amazed me.
They have called the telephone number you allowed me to publish with my letter. We have sent each and every one who called a complete brochure, explaining what the newly formed Pagosa Lakes Legal Defense Group is going to do with the proposed legal proceedings to eradicate and eliminate the burden of this fee to property owners at Pagosa Lakes.
The former company, which only manages the Fairfield time-share condos, and still holds title to a few other pieces of real estate, has continued to send statements for the recreational fees to over 1,200 property owners, and only a few are paying the fees.
Back in 1993 the property owners were advised that they would not have to pay because the company collecting the fees was in bankruptcy proceedings and would no longer maintain or manage the recreational amenities.
From the amount of letters of inquiry, there are many people interested and I am planning to take care of all people who want to get information. Just call 731-1909 and we will mail all the details. Thank you for your wonderful newspaper.
Robert G. Schmideler
Football fans are in for a treat tomorrow. Championship football comes to Golden Peaks Stadium at 7 p.m. when Pagosa Springs and Monte Vista collide for the Intermountain League title. Pagosa Springs is gunning for three IML titles in a row.
And, for the third year in a row, it will be Pirates dueling Pirates for the League championship. Pagosa's Pirates warmed up for the confrontation by dumping Bayfield 24-0 Friday night. At the same time across the mountains, Monte Vista's Pirates blasted Centauri 55-0.
Playoff bids await both teams, regardless of what happens Friday night. The big questions are, who will be No. 1 in the IML and who will play at home during the first round of the playoffs? The answer to both questions is the same: the winner of Friday night's game.
First and second place teams from the Southern League provide the first round of playoff opposition. The IML's first-place team hosts Colorado Springs Christian, the Southern League's second-place team. The IML's second-place team plays at La Junta, the Southern League's first-place team.
In any case, tomorrow night's game promises plenty of excitement. Both teams have shown ability to score from anywhere on the field. Both have defeated the rest of the league's teams by big scores. Both have outstanding quarterbacks and a running back ranked among the best in state 2A football.
"The boys know how important the Monte Vista game is," Stretton said. "I expect they will play as if this were a playoff game," Stretton added.
Pagosa and Monte enter tomorrow night's fray with 3-0 records in the IML, 6-2 records for the season. Pagosa captured the last two titles by edging Monte 14-13 last year and 15-6 the year before.
Friday night's win over Bayfield was not one of the Pirate's prettiest efforts this season, but the game was never in doubt. Bitter cold shrouding the Wolverine turf may have contributed to a seemingly endless number of loose balls and dropped passes.
"I thought we did some good things against Bayfield," said Pirate coach Myron Stretton. "We played good defense during the first half, then forgot how to tackle in the second half."
When asked if the cold caused the players to miss passes and fumble, Stretton replied, "It wasn't as cold as the week before. Cold is not an excuse. I don't know what caused the fumbling. I'm going to ask them during practice. I'm curious myself."
Bayfield won the opening toss, giving coach David Close an opportunity to try to sneak up on the Pirates. It worked when Pagosa fumbled the on-side kick as the game opened, giving Bayfield the ball on the Pagosa Springs 48-yard line.
Pagosa's defense more than answered the Wolverine trickery by forcing Bayfield to punt four plays later. In addition to preventing the Wolverines from crossing the goal line during the entire game, Pagosa's defense did not surrender a first down until midway through the second period.
In fact, defense by both teams dominated the first few possessions. Bayfield picked off a Ronnie Janowski pass to end the first Pirate possession, a fumble to end the second possession. Pagosa fumbled seven times during the first half. Finally, with little more than a minute left in the first period, Darin Lister kicked a 39-yard field goal to put Pagosa on top 3-0.
After stopping Bayfield on their next possession, Pagosa held on to the ball long enough to march 49 yards in eight plays for the first touchdown of the game with 8:29 left in the half. Lister's extra point kick was good, boosting the Pirate lead to 10-0.
Pagosa's defense continued to hold Bayfield in check, forcing yet another Wolverine punt. After starting from their own 36-yard line, Pagosa again punched across the goal line. Lister booted the extra point giving Pagosa a 17-0 lead in what was beginning to look like a runaway.
Bayfield stiffened, however, and kept the ball for more than five minutes on their next possession. During the possession, they also picked up four first downs. The drive ended with an incomplete pass on the Pagosa 45.
Wolverine ball control continued into the second half. After receiving the second half kickoff, Bayfield used up six and one-half minutes of the third quarter before surrendering to a Pirate goal line stand on the five-yard line.
Pagosa showed ball control themselves by using most of the remainder of the third period to march 95 yards for the game's final score. A Janowsky to Jason Schutz pass did the final damage. Again Lister kicked the EP, giving Pagosa a 24-0 lead.
Once again, Mellette was Pagosa's leading rusher. The senior piled up 118 yards on 15 carries. Brandon Rosgen ran six times for 20 yards, Lister five times for 36 yards, and Charles five times for 35 yards.
Charles was the most sure-handed of the receivers, snagging five passes for 81 yards. Quarterback Janowsky completed seven of 14 pass attempts for 115 yards, one touchdown, and one interception.
Rosgen and Pablo Martinez topped Pagosa defenders, each with six solo tackles and six assists. Ross Wagle was next with nine total tackles, followed by Mellette with eight total tackles, and Charles and Michael Vega with seven total tackles each. Ethan Sanford, Ben Marshall, and Jason Schutz each contributed six total tackles.
Monte Vista is led by senior running back Marco Tortorelli and junior quarterback Ben Carlucci. This year, Monte has lost to Florence, and Pope Pius of New Mexico. Pagosa Springs has lost to two New Mexico schools, Kirtland and Piedra Vista.
"Monte will be similar to last year," said Stretton. "Of course, Tortorelli and Carlucci are better than they were last year. Jacob Jones is gone as a receiver, so they throw to several others."
"I wish every game was like the Monte game," Stretton said, "It's more fun playing with so much at stake."
Tomorrow night, 7 p.m. in Golden Peaks Stadium, the Pirate season is at stake.
Pagosa Springs 24, Bayfield 0
Pagosa Springs 3 14 7 0 24
Bayfield 0 0 0 0 0
PS: Lister 39 yard FG. PS: Mellette 1-yard run (Lister kick). PS: Lister 1-yard run (Lister kick). PS: Janowsky 18 pass Schutz (Lister kick).
There was a party planned Saturday by Centauri volleyball fans, hopeful their Falcons would be the first Intermountain league team to defeat Pagosa Springs since they accomplished the task during the 1995 season.
Alas, someone left something nasty in the punch bowl and there would be no celebration in La Jara.
Who would do such a thing?
The Lady Pirates?
Who now own a 17-2 overall season record and who have put their sixth undefeated IML season in the books?
The gym at La Jara was full of Falcon supporters and they raised the roof as the home team took the court. A row of rude adolescent fans was in place on the sideline, the band was playing, everything seemed ready for a happy night in the San Luis Valley.
Give the Falcons credit where credit is due. Coach Brian Loch's charges did not succumb easily in the first match, though they did not earn many of the points that allowed them to creep back into contention and reignite their fans.
Game one began with a series of five sideouts. Ashely Gronewoller broke the stalemate with a kill of a quick-set and Nicole Buckley put the Ladies ahead 1-0 winning a battle for a ball hanging above the tape. Buckley seemed fully recovered from a recent illness and ready to play at the highest level throughout the remainder of the season.
After another series of sideouts the home team scored one of the few earned points it would put on the board as Erin McCarrol nailed a stuff block.
After more sideouts, with the game stalled in first gear, the Ladies scored twice on kills from Buckley and Gronewoller. More sideouts ensued before Ladies went ahead 6-1. More sideouts and Pagosa went ahead 8-1. The crowd was quiet.
With Pagosa in front 9-2, the Falcons started to put together bundles of points, nearly all handed over by Lady Pirate errors. The noise level in the gym grew as Centauri closed the score to 10-8; Pagosa got two points off Falcon mistakes to stifle the run and with a point on an ace by Shannon Walkup the Ladies led 13-8.
Centauri refused to succumb, scoring twice, one of the points surrendered on one of many dubious net violations called by the floor referee.
Gronewoller took back the serve and Buckley crushed a Falcon overpass. Centauri got one more point but Lori Walkup closed out the game with an ace for a 15-11 victory.
Centauri fared worse in the second game of the match as Pagosa surged to a 9-2 lead using a flurry of Falcon mistakes to take the advantage. The falcons seemed nervous and off their rhythm as the Ladies pressed ahead, going in front 13-4 after Gronewoller annihilated a Centauri overpass. The Ladies gave up three easy points to their hosts with errors before Gronewoller took the ball back with a kill. Centauri surrendered the 14th point with a mistake and Buckley closed out the evening 15-7 with a kill from outside.
"It was fun going in there and beating them," said Coach Penné Hamilton. "There was a big crowd and some boys acting pretty rude and it all adds to the sweetness of the victory. I think Shannon Walkup played one of her best matches of the year on defense; she kept some balls in play with wonderful moves. The first game was a battle, but the girls stayed with it and played hard. Ashley rolled her ankle and we were a little worried, but in the second game, we started breaking them down and I think we dominated the game."
Pagosa Spgs. def Centauri 15-11, 15-7
Kills: Buckley 12, Gronewoller 10, Lancing 9
Assists: Lancing 16, L. Walkup 6
Solo blocks: Lancing 1
Aces: S. Walkup, Gronewoller, Lancing 1
Digs: S. Walkup 8, Lancing 6
Monte Vista visited the Pagosa Springs gym Friday to do battle with their hosts in an Intermountain League volleyball match. The team left on the losing end of the effort, falling to the Lady Pirates 15-3, 15-10.
It was the last of two regular season matches between the teams and Monte Vista came to town with the most successful squad the program has put on the court in a number of years. In the match at Monte Vista earlier in the season, Monte took the favored lady Pirates to three games - a feat the team from the San Luis Valley has accomplished this year against several other teams that were heavy favorites.
An idea of an upset victory was dashed by Pagosa, but not before the visitors put a scare into the league-leaders in the second game.
The first game of the match featured all the Lady Pirate seniors, with Nicole Buckley, Ashley Gronewoller, Katie Lancing, Emily Finney and Jenny Printz taking the court with junior Shannon Walkup.
Things couldn't have gone better for the last regular season home match of the seniors' careers. Everyone got a moment in the sun as the Ladies flew to a 6-0 lead, then went ahead 11-3.
Following a lengthy series of sideouts, Pagosa got a 12th point on a kill from Lancing, a 13th point on a kill by Walkup, a 14th on a tandem block by Printz and Lancing and the game winner when Lancing killed a back-set from Finney.
The starting six took the court for the second game and, at first, seemed like they would run away with the match. The Ladies took a 9-1 lead, getting points five through nine with Shannon Walkup at the serve. Walkup hit two aces and Lady Pirate blockers stifled the Monte attack for two points.
Lori Walkup hit an ace to start a three-point scoring run, with Buckley pounding a cross-court kill for the 12th Lady Pirate point.
Then, problems began for Pagosa. Monte scored with an ace and a stuff block. The Ladies gave away three points with mistakes and the gap was narrowed to 12-6.
A Monte carry gave the Ladies a 13-6 lead and Gronewoller killed from the middle to put the Ladies on the edge of a win. Monte scored three more times however, before Gronewoller regained the serve with a kill. Lancing and Gronewoller then ended the game with a tandem block.
"Chock up another ugly win for Pagosa Springs," said Coach Penné Hamilton. "We did a good job in the first game, but we let down a bit at points in the second game. Ashley is doing very well on offense, though; she continues to hit the ball well and get a good percentage of kills versus attempts. Nicki and Katie hit better tonight. Both of them were more consistent. We'll need to be as consistent as possible as we go into postseason play."
Pagos a Spgs. def. Monte Vista 15-3, 15-10
Kills: Buckley 9, Gronewoller 8, Lancing 5
Assists: Lancing 17, Finney 8
Blocks: Gronewoller 6, Lancing 2
Aces: S. Walkup 2
Digs: Buckley 6, S. Walkup 5
It's the one thing that can cripple a talented volleyball team. Volleyball is a sport of emotion and momentum, and when the energy is diminished by breakdowns and inconsistency, a game and match can turn on a dime.
It happened to the Lady Pirates in the first game of a 15-12, 15-0 victory over Ignacio Thursday, and the experience should serve as a warning to the Ladies as they head to the district tournament in their home gym Saturday.
How much damage can inconsistency do?
Pagosa had an overwhelming 14-1 lead in the first game of the match and won 15-13. The Bobcats earned only two of their points in rising from the brink of extinction to the position where a win was not out of the question.
Call it an early Christmas for the Bobcats; one gift after another benefitted the visitors and a marginally good team suddenly looked like world-beaters.
In retrospect, there was an omen visible before the game: play was delayed several minutes while the Ignacio coach argued about the height of the net. Players gathered in circles on either side of the court as tape measures and strings were used to determine the mid-point of the net was half an inch too low. While it is hard to imagine how a half-inch difference would benefit a team without a player taller than 5'8", adjustments were made to satisfy the coach and play began.
The height of the net made no difference one way or the other to Pagosa's 6'3" middle hitter Ashley Gronewoller who overwhelmed the Bobcat defense all night long, hitting 9 kills in 11 attempts. Gronewoller took a quick-set from Katie Lancing and smashed it to the floor for Pagosa's first point. Lancing then hit four ace serves, skillfully mixing range and velocity to confound the Bobcat backcourt.
With her team ahead 7-0, Gronewoller clicked on another quick-set before senior outside hitter Nicole Buckley took over, scoring three of five successive points with two kills and a tip over the Bobcat blockers. Gronewoller hit an ace and Katie Bliss blasted a kill from the middle to help extend the advantage to 13-1. Following a series of sideouts, an Ignacio hitting error put the Ladies at the edge of the win 14-1.
Then, the roof caved in.
One Pagosa mistake after another gave away points. A Bobcat shot, divinely inspired, fell to the floor and the visitors had closed the gap to 14-12.
Shannon Walkup closed the circus with a kill and the teams traded sideouts. At long last, Gronewoller ended the agony, and the game, with a tip for the final point.
If there was a bright spot in the event, it was the fact the stunning reversal of Bobcat fortune in the first game did not carry over to the second game of the night.
Pagosa roared out to a 5-0 lead with Bliss at the serve. Lancing and Gronewoller scored with two tandem blocks, Gronewoller nailed a Bobcat overpass, and Ignacio surrendered two points with hitting errors.
A four-point run followed return of serve, with Gronewoller scoring with a kill and a tip.
The points came in bundles of two from that point on. Gronewoller nailed a quick-set from Lori Walkup, Buckley tipped for a point; Ignacio mis-hit a ball and Buckley scored with a kill; Amy Young hit an ace serve then back-set Lancing who put the ball down to end the game and the match 15-0.
Inconsistency had vanished. Dominance reappeared.
"We started real strong," said Coach Penné Hamilton, "then got trapped in a situation where we couldn't stop making mistakes, where we quickly lost our momentum. Ignacio is the type of team that will sit back and watch us try to run a higher level of offense, hoping we'll make mistakes and allow them to get back into the game. That's just what they did, and just what we did.
"The second game was wonderful. It's about time the kids had a shutout in a second game. This was the second straight match where the team played a strong second game. We've struggled with this problem, and the change is a good thing to see at this point in the season."
Pagosa Spgs. def Ignacio 15-12, 15-0
Kills: Gronewoller 9, Buckley 4
Assists: Lancing 9, L. Walkup 5
Digs: S. Walkup 5, Buckley 3
Aces: Lancing 3, Gronewoller 2
Beautiful weather and strong competition made for a record-setting day at the regional cross country races Saturday in Pagosa Springs.
A total of nine girls' and nine boys' teams chased each other around the nine-hole Piñon course at the Pagosa Springs Golf Club, vying for spots at the state meet Oct. 27. Four schools qualified in both the girls' and boys' races. Beyond that, the top five individual runners - those not qualifying as part of a team - also made the cut.
Pagosa Springs runners captured three of the individual spots, but failed to qualify a team.
"I am happy that we have three people going," Coach Scott Anderson said. "I had expected more, but it just didn't turn out that way."
The Pirates will send two boys and a girl, to Kent Denver for the 3A state competition Oct. 27. Both junior Todd Mees, who put on a strong show in the final 50 yards to claim 11th in 19:33, and senior Trevor Peterson, who finished 13th in 19:55, earned state spots. To round out the threesome, senior Aubrey Volger, completed the course in 22:11 to take fifth place for the girls.
For the girls, Bayfield, Salida, Monte Vista and Buena Vista, placing in that order, will take teams to state. Buena Vista won the boys' team race, outracing Center, in second. Salida claimed third, followed by Centauri in fourth.
All competed in front of a great crowd, and winners of both races set course records.
"I think one of the great things about cross country is how everyone out there cheers for all the runners," Anderson said. "You might have rivals competing, but the parents will cheer for everyone. I think parents understand the difficulties of the sport and truly appreciate the athlete's efforts."
Rachel Gioscia, of Buena Vista, won the girls race in 21:07. She was followed by Molly Kerrigan, of Salida, who finished in 21:18, and Jackie Shaw, of Bayfield, finishing third in 22:04.
Aucencio Martinez, of Center, set a blistering pace in the boys' race, finishing in 17:05, 54 seconds faster than the closest runner. The battle for second came down to the wire with Clint Sowards, of Centauri, edging out Tad Schoedal, of Buena Vista.
Other Pagosa Springs finishers on the girls' side included: senior Tiffany Thompson, 24th in 22:11 who missed qualifying for state by just two spots; junior Amanda McCain, 35th in 26:36; sophomore Lauren Caves, 37th in 27:11; and senior Joetta Martinez, 38th in 27:19.
Junior Jesse Powe paced the remainder of the boys' pack with a 22:57, 38th place finish. He was followed by Nick Hall who ran the course in 23:24 to cross the finish in 40th, and Ryan Beavers, who claimed 47th in 25:43.
For the three runners looking toward state, their course is set for Denver, two days away.
"We're tapering this week," Anderson said. "That means we're decreasing the volume of our training load, but maintaining the intensity, and we will continue to work on the mental aspects of the sport. We'll do everything we can to have the three state qualifiers physically and mentally ready."
With those words at the end of the first half Saturday, Center's soccer coach took his squad off the field, granting Pagosa Springs the higher seed for the first round of state playoffs this weekend.
The concession did not eliminate the Vikings from playoff action. It resulted in the San Luis Valley team drawing the No. 16 seed and the right to meet number 1 ranked Colorado Academy.
But, why would a coach concede?
Let us count the reasons.
For openers, try 5, the number of goals by the Pirates' Kyle Sanders in the first half.
Or, maybe the number 10 has more meaning. That's the number of players Center had available (11 is regulation), and that was one more than their coach had expected to have because of eligibility and transfer student status.
Maybe you like the number 2. That's the number of unassisted goals in the first half by Kyle, and, if you're really into deuces, you'd match the number of goals fired in by the Pirates' midfielder Jordan Kurt-Mason.
If you're partial to the number 4, you might opt for the number of saves in the half by Pirate keeper Matt Mesker who felt like the forgotten man for most of the half as his teammates kept the ball in the other end of the field.
And if you like playing 8 ball, 8 might be your number. It was for the Pirates. They had an 8-goal lead as the whistle ended the opening stanza.
That was enough for Center coach Kevin Rice. Knowing his team would still make the playoffs, he pulled them from the contest, conceding the higher seed to Pagosa Springs.
The pace of the game was set early. With only 20 seconds elapsed Pirate attacker Henrique Dias was stopped on a point-blank blast from 20 yards. And moments later left wing Zeb Gill was wide right on a 30 yard drive.
Kyle Sanders got the scoring underway at the 3:50 mark converting a seeing-eye lead-through pass from his brother, Trent, that had Viking keeper Jorge Hernandez diving the wrong way after biting on Kyle's pull-up fake.
After Hernandez made excellent stops on Kurt-Mason and Gill, Kyle Sanders recorded his second goal unassisted at 9:14. This time Hernandez seemed to watch for the fake but there was none. Sanders drove him right back into the net and then drilled a shot into the left corner.
A minute and 10 seconds later, the human scoring machine stole a Viking outlet pass and roared in unimpeded for his second unassisted goal, third overall in the contest.
Center got a scoring chance at the 12 minute mark on a penalty kick which was blocked by a Pirate defender before it got to Mesker. At 13:56, he got to touch the ball for the first time, coming out to his right to stop a drive from the wing.
At 21:24, Sanders was on the attack again, taking a beautiful drop pass from Benjamin Raab and converting it into point number 4 before Hernandez had a chance to move out of his tracks.
Right winger Kevin Muirhead, playing probably his best all-round game of the season, had the next scoring opportunity, drilling one from 20 yards that seemed to handcuff Hernandez as he made the stop and then there was a collision with Levi Gill that left Hernandez on the ground but able to stop a rebound attempt by Dias.
In the 24th minute Levi got his chance to score but Hernandez was up to the test. At 25:16, however, the Center keeper was beaten by Zeb Gill who converted a crossing pass from Dias for the fifth Pirate goal.
Classic teamwork highlighted the sixth Pirate goal. Dias picked off a Center crossing pass, drove it neatly to Muirhead who, in stride, dropped it to Kyle Sanders roaring up the middle for a picture-perfect goal, his fifth of the game and 23rd of the season.
After Zeb Gill and Muirhead each missed scoring opportunities. Kurt-Mason roared in from the center spot and ripped his second goal of the season past Hernandez at 36:04. Two minutes later, Kurt-Mason's penalty shot was blocked by Center but the junior midfielder wasn't quite done.
With 33 seconds remaining in the half he took the ball from midfield toward the right wing, used a reverse crossover step to break free in the middle, deked out a defender and found himself alone 8 yards in front of the net. He was so alone, he said afterward, that he couldn't believe there was no defender to challenge him. So, he fired it in and the score had mounted to 8-0 for Pagosa as the half ended.
Concession was the end.
Coach Lindsey Kurt-Mason utilized a number of freshmen and junior varsity players as substitutes for starters throughout the game to avoid running up the score on the undermanned Vikings.
First half: PS-K. Sanders, assist by T. Sanders at 3:50; K. Sanders unassisted at 9:14; K. Sanders unassisted at 10:24; K. Sanders, assist Raab, at 21:24; Dias from Z. Gill at 25:06; K. Sanders assist by Dias and Muirhead, at 27:21; Kurt-Mason, unassisted, at 36:54; Kurt-Mason, unassisted, at 39:27. Saves: PS-Mesker, 4; C-Hernandez, 8. Penalty kicks: PS-Kurt-Mason, blocked; C-A. Hurtado, blocked.
Kiwanis offer safe Halloween for kids
The Pagosa Springs Kiwanis Club invites you to bring all your little ones to their Halloween Party at the Parish Hall, 451 Lewis Street, on Wednesday evening, Oct. 31. Doors will open at 6 p.m., and free hot dogs, ice cream and candy will available for all the little goblins to enjoy. The evening will also include games and prizes and offers a safe, fun Halloween alternative for all of our children. Doors close at 8 p.m. so you can get all the little party animals home and in bed at a decent hour. Please join all the ghosties and goblins at Parish Hall on Oct. 31.
After a year's worth of blood, sweat and tears, it was especially gratifying to enjoy a night of celebration with the unveiling of our first official Pagosa Springs poster. The Arts Council Gallery was packed last Thursday night with those eagerly anticipating a first look at said poster, so it was a treat to hear all the oooohs and aaaahs when Ken Harms and Bruce Andersen dropped the covering. We once again thank Ken and Bruce for the prodigious efforts expended in the name of this project as well as photographers Charel Fawcett and Randi Andersen for their considerable contribution. Thanks, too, to committee members Don McKeehan (whose name somehow fell from memory on Thursday night), Angie Dahm, Bonnie Masters and Mark DeVoti. We also thank Joanne Haliday at the arts council gallery for her cooperation and help with this project.
We encourage you to come by the Chamber to purchase your poster plus a few to give as welcome Christmas gifts. Locals might prefer the numbered, signed copies for themselves and the unsigned versions for those out of the area. I have several earmarked to bestow upon some of my lucky family members and friends, and I'm sure you can come up with a similar list. Drop by soon and check it out for yourself.
Paradise in Pagosa
Tickets are going out the door at a rapid rate for the Immaculate Heart of Mary Fashion Show "Paradise in Pagosa" to be held Nov. 10 at the Parish Hall on Lewis Street beginning at noon. This is always a delicious and fun affair with lots of folks we know modeling clothes from local retailers and many opportunities to win wonderful door prizes throughout the day. Tickets on sale here at the Visitor Center are $18, and I strongly suggest that you purchase them soon as this event is sold out every year. Give us a call at 264-2360 if you have any questions.
Don't forget to cast your vote for the cutest baby in Pagosa at ALCO in the Country Center before the Oct. 31 deadline. All proceeds from this contest will go to the Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund, so you can make a "cute" selection and contribute to an ever-so-worthy cause at the same time. The winner will receive a $25 ALCO gift certificate just in time for holiday shopping.
We had a grand time at the Diplomat Halloween Party/Luncheon last Wednesday at the Timbers and more than our share of laughs and silliness. We want to thank Joe for preparing a delicious meal for all of us and Paige and Wendy for being so helpful and accommodating - they worked so hard, and we appreciated all they did.
I want to personally thank Sheila Hunkin and Nettie Trenk for the delightful poem and all the "glass washers" for the accompanying dish towels. Evidently Sheila, Nettie, Marguerite Flick, Sara Scott, Lillian Steele and Rose Smith felt that our dish towels (rags) here at the Chamber left something to be desired and have replaced them with brand new beautiful ones. The place will never be the same, ladies, and I thank you all for your thoughtfulness. I also want to thank the following businesses for contributing to the Diplomat "goody bags" with gifts of gratitude for the wonderful work they do: Bank of Colorado, Echo Mountain Alpacas, Asay Chiropractic & Wellness Center, Old West Press, The Springs, Choke Cherry Tree, Ridgeview Centre, CSE Advertising Specialties, CenturyTel, Bank of the San Juans, Wells Fargo Bank, Circle T/Ace Hardware, SOS Staffing Service, Chile Mountain Cafe, Bear Creek Saloon, Cowboy Carpet Cleaning, The Daily Scoop, Exclusively Elizabeth, The Buck Stops Here, WolfTracks Bookstore and Coffee Company, Clean As A Whistle, Squirrel's Pub & Pantry, Colorado Skies, Artemisia Botanicals Co. and The Candy Shoppe. The Diplomats truly appreciated your generosity.
It's about families
A number of our local musicians have banded together to provide entertainment and support the families of the firemen who gave their lives trying to save others on Sept. 11. This benefit concert will be held at the Timbers of Pagosa on Nov. 2, beginning at 5 p.m., and the $5 (minimum) donation taken at the door will go to the families of the New York firefighters.
The local artists with such big hearts include the Pagosa Hot Strings, Rio Jazz, Mark DeVoti, the Dutton Ditch Blues Band, The Joe Jazz Trio, the Randall Davis Band, (Debbie) Ramey and (Robbie) Pepper, Melange, Cellophane and more. Please plan to attend the "It's About Families" concert at the Timbers beginning at 5 p.m. on Nov. 2 and contribute to this worthy cause.
We have two new members to introduce to you this week and 17 renewals which puts an extra little spring in our steps around here.
We welcome Jim Tiner with Southwest Refrigeration Services Company doing business out of his home. Jim offers service, repair, installation of air-conditioning, heating boilers, exhaust, commercial kitchen equipment and all types of refrigeration equipment, walk-ins, freezers and ice machines. Whew. This man can do it all and would be happy to talk to you about your needs at 264-9161.
Our second new member this week, Mary Miller, joins us as an Associate Member, and we are delighted to welcome Mary to the fold.
Renewals this week include Kent Monson with Colorado Jaynes Construction Company; John Porter with A Reading Society and Ensemble; Jim Fletcher Abram, Edwards & York; Linda Morrison with Pagosa Insurance Agency, Inc.; Udgar Parsons with Growing Spaces; Russ Lee with LaPlata Electric Association; Amy Bachman with Frontier Internet in Durango; Michael R. Barr with Affordable Kitchens; Jean A. Farrer with The Pinewood Inn; Gary and Carol Dillard with The Corner Store, Inc.; Yale Espoy with Sticky Fingers, LLC, d.b.a. Isabel's; Livia Lynch with the Archuleta County Education Center, Inc.; Shellie Hogue with Hogue's Glass of Pagosa, Inc.; Mark and Angie Dahm with WolfTracks Bookstore and Coffee Company; Cindy Gustafson with the Aspen Springs Property Owners Association; and Lori Salisbury with Lori Salisbury Gallery and Framing.
Our Associate Member renewals this week are A.R. and Melba Dillard. Welcome one and all.
Baked goods donors, Ski & Bow staff draw praise
A huge thank you to all the folks who furnished and purchased baked goods at our bake sale last week. We especially thank the kind non-member folks - Diane Smith and Dot and Curl Jones, plus others I may not be aware of - who donated items. And another huge thank you to Larry and the folks at Ski and Bow Rack for the use of their parking lot, their purchases, and the hot chocolate when we were cold. The weather was perfect and, though numbers of hunters were down somewhat, locals made up the difference so we sold out by about 2 p.m. Friday.
Cindy has arranged an exciting tour for Nov. 15: a tour of Georgia O'Keefe's home/studio/gardens in Abiquiu. The total cost is $30 per person ($15 transportation and $15 for the tour) but there is a limit of only 12 folks allowed on the tour so interested folks need to make their reservations and pay the fee immediately. Contact Cindy or Musetta at the Senior Center.
We appreciate the two sacks of puzzles donated to the Senior Center by Bob and Diane Outerbridge.
It was nice to have Walt and Ruth Birdsong with us on Monday - we hope to see them more often.
The Senior of the Week is Ben Horseman. Ben tells us that he will be joining us on a regular basis, welcome Ben.
Colorado Dream Homes has generously offered fire starter wood to seniors - those interested should contact Linda or Tegan at 731-3071.
A reminder that the Liberty Theater offers 2 p.m. matinees for seniors only on Wednesdays for a nominal charge of $3. We so appreciate this service and hope seniors will take advantage of it.
Beginning in November the Yoga classes will be held on Tuesday mornings, so folks may come to them and still go swimming on Wednesdays at the Lodge.
Our monthly Senior Board meeting is tomorrow. It will be held at Town Hall at 12:45. Anyone interested in providing input or just listening is encouraged to attend. Also, on Friday is our monthly potluck at 5 p.m., remember you do not need to be a member to attend this festivity, bring a dish and prepare for a fun time.
Just a reminder that Oct. 31 we will be having a costume party/contest for all you ghosts and goblins. There are two prize categories this year, one for best costume by an individual and the other for best costume by a couple.
With the upcoming move to the new Community Center next summer we will be putting on a new face. Help us celebrate this move by renaming the Archuleta County Senior Center. Start mulling over your ideas and submit your entry by the end of December. A prize will be awarded to the lucky winner.
Don't forget: Turn clock back Saturday night
The time changes Saturday at midnight so don't forget to set your clock back.
A rule of thumb is to change the battery in your smoke detector at the same time you set back the clocks. A 9-volt battery is the kind needed. All batteries need to be changed, even in the newer houses that have electrical detectors.
A working smoke detector is the first line of defense in case of fire.
Nearly 60 percent of fire deaths occur in homes with no fire detectors, and 30 percent of homes with these units have at least one detector that doesn't work.
The Fire Code requires that all new homes have a working fire detector; it is only that people forget to replace the batteries. And what applies to homes, is meant for apartment houses and businesses.
When Reuben Marquez died Dec. 16, 1999, he left a legacy of patriotism. He flew the American Flag every day. His obituary was written up in the Denver Post and there was a picture of his family raising the flag.
Now his family sponsors the Reuben R. Marquez Patriotic Essay Contest for high school students. The winner will be announced at the Veteran's Day ceremony to be held at 11 a.m. at the Pagosa Springs High School on Monday, Nov. 12.
Last week an outfitter I know was carrying a deer rack on his shoulder and another man, a hunter (believe it or not), asked my friend if it was a deer or an elk.
That's question one he was asked.
Question number two was (by someone else) "how old does a deer have to be to become an elk?"
The answer to number two is "none" because a deer is a deer and an elk, an elk.
So, I asked my friend to educate me, to help me describe for you, the reader how to tell a deer from an elk.
The official "deer family" includes moose, deer and elk (called Wapati by the Indians and pronounced WAH puh tee). Members of the deer family have antlers and the antlers are shed each year.
The antler spread is called "the rack." The elk rack has a main beam with tines branching off to a side. The deer rack does not have a main beam. Its tines fork.
Now if you can't understand this then go find your own outfitter and get him to show you the difference between an elk and a deer. Antlers are never called horns. Horns do not shed. An example is the Rocky Mountain Big Horn Sheep. His horns are there to stay.
Fun on the run
Q: What does a baby computer call his father?
Q: What is a computer's first sign of old age?
A: Loss of memory.
Q: What happened when the computer fell on the floor?
A: It slipped a disk.
Q: Why was there a bug in the computer?
A: It was looking for a byte to eat.
Q: What is a computer virus?
A: A terminal illness.
Q: What did the spider do to the computer?
A: Made a website!
Campbell asked to probe clinic delay
The power of the U.S. Senate is being brought to bear in getting the Durango Veterans Affairs Health Care Clinic up and running.
As many of our Archuleta County veterans are well aware, the Durango VA Clinic has been promised for over a year, and still there is no actual opening date in sight.
Ted Johnson, Vice Chairman of the Colorado Board of Veterans Affairs, who resides in Durango and is well advised on the status of the Durango VA Clinic, asked Senator Ben Nighthorse Campbell last Thursday to look into the matter. The U.S. Congress authorized the Durango clinic in January of this year. It had been planned for as far back as April 2000.
In a letter to Sen. Campbell, Ted outlined the chronology of information regarding the Durango clinic and problems with the Department of Veterans Affairs in getting the clinic open. He said Montezuma, La Plata and Archuleta counties in southwest Colorado, and Las Animas County in south central Colorado, have their health care administered by the Albuquerque VA Medical Center. He went on to point out the nearest VA Health Care facility serving Montezuma, La Plata and Archuleta counties is Farmington, which is about 90 miles from Pagosa Springs.
The Farmington clinic has been maxed out for the past several years and not accepting new patients (except at long delay). Other choices near Pagosa Springs are the Albuquerque VA Hospital (250 miles), Montrose (190 miles), or Alamosa (100 miles).
An additional point of information Ted relayed in his letter to Sen. Campbell is that the federal government declared La Plata County to be medically underserved in March 2001.
Ted concluded by asking, "What is the holdup? In as much as Congress endorsed this clinic in January this year, why are we not seeing progress? Why are we back at square one? When will a Community Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC) be open to serve the veterans of SW Colorado?"
We in Archuleta County certainly concur with Ted's letter to Senator Campbell. As of this week we are approaching almost 900 veterans in the Veteran Service Office database. This database has been built over the history of the office, and it is difficult to ascertain how many are actually enrolled in the VA Health Care program from Archuleta County. I have added well over 100 new veterans to our database just in the last 6 months or so. Of these I would say almost 70-80 percent have enrolled in the VA Health Care system. I recently made inquiries to Farmington VA Clinic on how many veterans from Archuleta County are enrolled with them. Farmington VA reports there are 264 veterans from Archuleta County enrolled. There were 1,386 patient visits in the last 12 months. We knew there were a lot of patients from our county, and this certainly should be a factor in the need for the Durango VA Clinic.
I would certainly urge everyone from this area to write your Congressman, in particular Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell, and ask for support in getting the Durango VA Clinic.
For information on these and other veterans benefits please call or stop by the Veterans Service Office located on the lower floor of the Archuleta County Courthouse. An Internet website for Archuleta County Veterans Service Office can be found at www.geocities.com/vso_archuleta. The office number is 264-2304, the FAX number is 264-5949, and E-mail is email@example.com. The office is open from 8 to noon and 1 to 4, Monday through Thursday, or Friday by appointment. Bring your DD Form 214 (Discharge) for registration with the county, application for VA programs, and for filing in the VSO office.
Explore options, be flexible in college bids
Oct. 29 - Shady Pine, Extension office, 7 p.m.
Applying for college
The learning curve is steep for senior students and their parents as they apply for college admission and scholarships, as well as for federal financial aid. Witness the following frustrations:
"I'm a lost cause. I have no community service or leadership experience to put on my application!"
"What kind of question is this? Describe one idea that gave you the most inspiration?"
"Where are those certificates from ninth grade? I remember that I won a few awards."
"This application wants references from three people&emdash;teachers, a youth leader and another adult!"
"This scholarship asks for proof that grandfather was a veteran. How do I get that?"
Students who can overcome their frustrations, however, not only gain a heads-up when it comes to applying for college admission and scholarships, they also learn some of the same job skills young people will use in the workplace of their future.
When applying for college, students must explore options and be flexible. Here are some suggestions for simplifying the complexity of college admission and scholarship applications.
Take the ACT/SAT more than one time, send test scores to several colleges, apply to more than one college or school and apply for all scholarships for which you qualify. One tip: If you don't know an answer on the tests, don't guess. Leave the space blank; a wrong answer counts against you.
Use your resources. Talk with school counselors and students who attend your school of preference. Visit with alumni who are working in your field of interest and talk to college professors in your major areas of interest. Attend precollege events and tours. You may or may not have a definite college preference, but by reviewing several choices, you can make the best decision.
Consider all sources that offer scholarships - those based on financial need, as well as on merit. Learn their requirements and timetables. Scholarships are offered university-wide and by specific colleges within universities. Other scholarship sponsors include youth organizations, churches, community memorials and service organizations. Government loans and the military are further options.
Be aware, however, of bogus scholarship programs. Look for these signs that a scholarship offer might be a sham:
€ The scholarship is guaranteed or your money back
€ You can get the information only from one party
€ The organization promises to do all the work for you
€ You need to pay up front to get a scholarship
€ You are a finalist for a scholarship (one you never applied for).
All of these "offers" sound too good to be true, another tip they are not for real. Be a smart consumer, as well, in reviewing details of a student loan, so you make a selection you can live with.
When applying for college admission or for scholarships, you will need to organize your accomplishments. Begin with three lists:
€ My skills (what I can/have done, what I do well or like to do)
€ My knowledge (what I know, concepts I grasp and practice)
€ Personal qualities (Think of what your best friend might say about you to someone else.)
Review some of your favorite accomplishments that go beyond awards. Describe your learning experiences and tell what you now value as a result of those experiences.
If you are one of the lucky ones who began a journal or a scrapbook in junior high, the details of your school career will be easy to find. Arrange them in chronological order. Include information about volunteer work, employment and organizations to which you belong. Review related documents, and cluster information under the headings of community service, leadership, achievement and school involvement (art, sports, academic, organizations). If you are still at the junior high or early high school stage, this is a good time to record the name and address of favorite teachers, who could be future references.
For some, the tough questions involve goals&emdash;work, career or life goals. This can be especially problematic when students are unsure of their area of study. Review your resume. Use it to help set up goals, then share the results with peers, adult friends and teachers. They may be able to help you identify missing details.
Now that you are a person with goals, create action steps to broaden your experiences. For example, enroll in a weekend computer class. Volunteer to read to shut-ins. Join a book club. Participate in intramural sports. These experiences are best undertaken prior to your last year in high school, but continue them in your senior year, so you can stay competitive. College standards continue to rise, but so does the desire of schools to attract and award students with broad character bases. The same applies to the working world. Employers are no longer satisfied only with skill level. They also want to know how you work with people and solve problems.
One way to communicate this is through the admissions essay you will write. If writing an essay seems overwhelming to you, check various web sites for tips. On the web, you will find writing ideas, as well as sample essays. Editing services are available for a fee from www.editmenow.com or www.essayedge.com
During the review process, college officials will check your transcripts for the difficulty and depth of the classes you took and will convert national test scores to credits. They will look for experiences as a school leader, community volunteer or as an employee. Try to participate in a variety of activities, but do not think you must do it all.
Be honest, but do present the most flattering information about yourself. Overcoming low grade points or discipline problems shows character. Just don't wait until spring semester of your senior year to begin the process.
Missy Kitty returns, wins staredown
Our neighbor's cat, Missy Kitty, disappeared last summer.
Hotshot and I felt terrible, because it happened on our watch, so to speak. We had gone for a walk, and she came with us. I've read about cats going on walks with their people, but Missy Kitty is the first one I've known personally.
On the day she disappeared, Hotshot and I went only about a mile along the gravel road, and then we turned back. She followed us, about 30 feet behind. For a while we kept looking back, and then we quit. Actually, we sort of forgot about her. When we did stop to look back, no Missy Kitty.
"She's probably stopped to check out the field mice," I said. "If something had chased her, we'd have heard a noise."
"That's right," said Hotshot. "Besides, she's done this before, remember? She'll come back on her own." We went on home. But she didn't show up the next day. Or the day after that. Or the next week.
We kept going back to the area where we'd last seen her, hoping to find a trace, or better yet, Missy Kitty herself.
"Coyotes got my cat," someone told me. "How do you know for sure," I asked. "Found his paw," she said. I wished I hadn't asked. We felt terrible. Neighbor Buck and his wife were sad. Missy Kitty's real owners were pretty upset, too. But they have a barn full of feed and hay and other stuff that might be appealing to mice. They needed a cat around the place. Two weeks after the disappearance, they brought home two cats, a brother and sister.
It was not a what you would call a success.
The female hated it here. Locked in the barn the first few days, she howled and cried. Let out, she ran away. They gave chase and found her up on the ridge. They brought her back. She cried for another few days, and ran away again.
This time, they let her go. She made it all the way back to her former home. Possibly a 10-mile trip. Across the meadows. Over the ridges. Past Parelli's place. Dodging dogs and coyotes and hawks. An impressive trip. Again, I've read about cats and dogs finding their way home, but I never knew one that actually did it.
Her brother, though, seemed happy enough in his new location. And he set about claiming the territory. He stalked poor old Big Brother, the timid cat who's lived here all his life. Big Brother wouldn't hurt a fly, as they say. Except he's a pretty good mouser.
This new cat, the bully, picked fights with Brother, beat him up, pulled out his long smoky-gray hair in large clumps, left slashes in his skin. He didn't like people any more than cats. He didn't come to see us for a morning treat. He didn't rub up against us or ask to get his ears scratched. He didn't hang around watching Hotshot work in the yard. And he sure didn't bring him any mice to eat.
And then, out of the clear blue, Missy Kitty returned. She went first to her barn, where she encountered Mr. Bully. The two of them spent three motionless hours staring at each other, before Missy Kitty gave up and came over to see us. We couldn't have been more stunned than Lazarus' friends when he rose from the dead. Or more delighted.
For the next couple of weeks, Missy Kitty left and came. Each visit was marked by confrontation with Mr. Bully. The barn and the yards echoed with the sound of quarreling cats.
And then Mr. Bully threw in the towel. He left. I don't know if his sister had left a trail for him to follow, rather like Hansel and Gretel leaving crumbs in the forest, but he also went home.
The original owner called up our neighbor. "Guess who else came back?" she said. Our neighbor was amazed, but she also was kind of relieved. "Do you want to come and get him?" asked the lady. "Well, let's just wait a bit," said our neighbor. "Maybe he'll find his way back here again."
Another day passed, and the lady called again. "He's still here," she said. "Now do you want to come and get him?"
"To tell you the truth," said our neighbor, "He's not really welcome here. He beats up on my neighbors' cat. I don't want trouble with my neighbors. I think you should keep him."
Peace and quiet was restored. Missy Kitty stayed longer on each visit, and she quit peeking around corners in the barn. Big Brother's scratches healed and his fur grew back.
Now we're back to the old routine. Missy Kitty comes by most mornings to greet Hotshot as he walks up the driveway to get the paper, and comes home with him to get a little breakfast and some lap time. Later she goes up to see Buck. When her real owners return from work and school in the afternoon, she heads home.
It's a nice rhythm. She's a nice cat. We're glad she's back.
Reset clocks and warn kids about early darkness
As all goods things must end, so do long summer days. This weekend, daylight savings time officially will end. Turn your clock back one hour before you go to bed on Saturday night. Set your watches, VCR, computers, fax, television or car clocks back one hour, as well as the clocks on the wall. And maybe the clock radio and the phone answering machine too. Remember to change times on lights in the homes and offices. Make it a yearly ritual to change the batteries in your home smoke detectors when daylight savings time ends. Because it gets dark earlier now, talk to children about evening curfew and outdoor safety rules.
Interested in duplicate bridge? A core group of serious bridge players meet every Tuesday evening at 6 p.m. at the Pagosa Lakes Clubhouse. They have a lot of fun, serious mind-bending kind and generally go until around 10 p.m. If you plan on joining them, bring a partner, a spouse, a friend, a neighbor or a sibling - anyone who can understand the mental conjugation of the game.
Fall stocking of the following lakes was completed earlier this week. Larry Lynch of PLPOA reports that 1,000 lbs. of rainbow and cutbow (a hybrid of cutthroat and rainbow) was introduced into Lake Hatcher. Lake Pagosa was stocked with 1,000 lbs. of cutbow while Lake Forest received 1,000 lbs. of rainbow. These fish are all 12 to 16 inches in size which will make for awesome angling this fall. An already existing healthy stock of fish, in addition to this latest stocking will ensure quality ice-fishing this winter and plenty of action in the early spring.
Fishing on all four lakes - Hatcher, Forest, Village and Pagosa - is by permit only. Permits are sold at the Recreation Center for the day, week or season. Season fishing permits for next year will go on sale January 1 and expire December 31 of the same year.
Many thanks to the students of Archuleta County High School for the beautiful commemoration of Domestic Violence Awareness Month. The large candles that were placed in different locations around Pagosa are a reminder to all of us that domestic violence is in our midst and we can all help - each in our own small way.
In "Travels With Charley," John Steinbeck described how he once hired a local boy to help repaint his home. When he asked the boy to go to the store for more paint, the boy looked down at his paint-spattered clothes and said he'd have to go home to clean up first. "Nuts!" Steinbeck said, "Go as you are." " I can't do it," the boy replied. "You got to be awful rich to dress as bad as you do." I love Pagosa because I can dress as poorly or as flashily as I desire and it reflects not on my economic well being.
'Den Leader's' gallery supports charities
How many of you have made a stop at the "Bear Den" on Highway 160 just past Bob's LP? Quite often you can find the "Den Leader" Joe Leal out carving a new creation with his chainsaw. Joe is a remarkable man who retired from making prostheses for the disabled, to living his passion of creating in every conceivable art medium. Joe works in wood, stained glass, papier-mache, rebar, cement, and metal among other vehicles. You name it and he has tried it, or he soon will.
Joe has started a most unusual art gallery in that a major part of the proceeds goes to charitable organizations. The artists that show in the gallery must be willing to give a percentage of their sales away. The Bear Den now has a Christmas Room with reasonably priced items for the holidays.
Joe has made some of the most unique ornaments out of pinecones that I have ever seen. This was a poor year for cones and Joe needs a big supply for his work. If you have any extra cones, please either take them to Joe personally, or bring them to the library and we will collect them for him.
Joe has donated one of his marvelous pieces for the Civic Club Bazaar. Please come in and see the hovering hummingbird statue. (And buy some raffle tickets). What a marvelous talent. How fortunate we are to have Joe working his magic here in Pagosa...
Speaking of raffle tickets, come and see the fabulous raffle prizes we have on display. Remember, the Civic Club Bazaar and raffle is Saturday, Nov. 3 from 9 to 5 at the Extension Building. A list of all the raffle items can be found elsewhere in today's paper.
Walter Cronkite gives us a tour of our magnificent coastline in "Around America." We have nearly 5,000 miles of coastline and almost 50 percent of all Americans live within a half-day drive of it.
Cronkite takes us from the tip of Maine all the way around to the Pacific with tidbits of history on the wonderful journey. A most enjoyable look at our coastline from a gentleman who has sailed most of it.
"Turn the Stars Upside Down," by Terry C. Johnston is a compelling story of Crazy Horse's surrender in 1877 only months after his last fight with the U.S. Army.
Award winning and best selling frontier author, Johnston brings all of his talent to bear in this tragic tale. No story of the Indian Wars would be complete without this final episode.
Johnston's first novel, "Carry the Wind," won many awards and his subsequent books have always been best sellers. Johnston died last march.
"Actual Innocence: When Justice Goes Wrong and How to Make It Right," by Barry Scheck, Peter Neufeld and Jim Dwyer gives a troubling portrayal of the criminal justice system. George Will says that you will not soon read a more frightening book.
"Winning Big In Colorado Small Clams Court: How to Sue and Collect," by Charles Brackney prepares you to assess your case and damages; complete, file and serve the Colorado forms file liens, and file counterclaims. This is an effort to provide greater access to the court system for all citizens.
The deadline for entries is tomorrow. We have some great stories from our budding authors. We will plan to publish them after the contest. We also have some illustrations to go with the scary stories. Thanks to the teachers who used this opportunity to get students involved in creative writing. We'll have more on this next week.
Financial help came from Dr. and Mrs. William Gullickson in memory of Beth Moore; Kroeger and City Market. Materials came from Merilyn Moorhead, Mark Smith, Cynthia Olsen, Richard Harris, Ace Hardware, Lisa Flaugh and Lisa Peterson.
Spirited play highlights soccer tournaments
This youth soccer season ended Saturday with tournament play for the Scorers, Strikers and Shooters. League play concluded with England taking first at 9-1 in the Scorers league, Mexico winning the Strikers at 9-1, and Italy capturing the Shooters undefeated at 8-0.
Tournament games took place Friday and all day Saturday for all leagues. In the Scorers, Scotland was first, England second, Canada the consolation champion and Ireland consolation runner-up.
In the Strikers, Switzerland was first, Germany second, Dulce Patriots third, Mexico fourth, Argentina fifth and France sixth.
In the Shooters, Italy finished the season and tournament undefeated, taking first place over Holland. Dulce Patriots were third, Spain fourth and Columbia and New Zealand fifth and sixth respectively.
Congratulations to each of the players and thanks to the many coaches, sponsors and volunteers who made this season a success.
This fall's adult coed volleyball league is in full swing with games played on Monday and Wednesday evenings. Colorado Construction and Ski and Bow Rack are tied for first at 7-2. Piano Creek stands at 6-3, Dulce/Silver Dollar and CPR Title are tied at 4-4 and Ace Hardware and American Family Insurance are 1-7. League games will continue through next week and tournament games will begin Nov. 5.
The third annual youth volleyball clinic started Monday and will continue through Nov. 19 with sessions on Monday and Wednesday evenings.
The clinic is open to all youth in fifth and sixth grades, the younger group from 6:30-7:30 p.m. and the others 7:30-8:30 p.m. All practices are in the junior high gym. Registration forms are available at Town Hall and the intermediate school. Participants can register for $10 with the recreation department at Town Hall or at the gym. Call the office at 264-4151, ext. 232 with any questions.
The next scheduled baseball committee meeting will be Oct. 30 at 5:30 p.m. in Town Hall. A sanctioning body will be selected for the baseball league for ages 9-14. Rule revisions for the younger players will also be discussed. All meetings are open to those interested in the Pagosa Youth Baseball Program. Call summer at 264-4151, ext. 232 for more information.
Downtown light poles
The town still has several old light poles for sale at $50 per pole. Interested parties can purchase as many as desired and need to contact Doug Call at Town Hall, 264-4151, ext. 231 for information.
Changes coming to enrich community
The Pagosa Springs Arts Council board of directors is happy to announce some changes in the exhibits and time frame of each exhibit. Effective with the 2002 season, exhibits will be held May through October. Exhibits will be for a period of three weeks each with a combination of theme exhibits and combination exhibits showing both two- and three-dimensional art. Each exhibit will consist of two to three artists.
"In keeping with our mission to enrich the community through the arts, we are looking forward to expanding community involvement both here at the gallery and continuing with the new space available to us in the new community center," Jennifer Harnick, president of the arts council. The art gallery location serves as the business office of the arts council. Although the gallery will maintain shortened hours during the winter months, Tuesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. It will be closed the entire month of November. Workshops are being considered for the winter months.
We are currently looking for a volunteer to coordinate art workshops for the community. If you are interested, call Jennifer at 264-5020 or Clare Burns at 264-6950 for details.
If you would like more information about the arts council and gallery, or how you get an artist's exhibit application packet, just call the art gallery, 264-5020.
The unveiling party of the first official Pagosa Springs poster was a huge success. If you have not been in to view the poster, you must. I was very impressed with the photographers, students from the junior high and Archuleta County High School. Prints of the poster will be on sale at the gallery through Oct. 31.
The PSAC helps ensure a flourishing and diverse community by enriching lives through the arts. We are a non-profit organization that relies on membership, donations and volunteers to help provide meaningful and educational cultural programs for local residents and visitors to our area. By becoming a member of PSAC you are supporting our events as well as our divisions.
The arts council would like to thank those who have helped PSAC in any way.
We thank Wells Fargo Bank for allowing us the use of their copy machine. As always, we appreciate Mountain Greenery for all the floral arrangements they donated this year for the exhibit openings.
Social Services offers confiscated game
Many individuals in rural areas provide a significant portion of the meat for the table by hunting wild game.
In this area of the country the game is usually elk or deer. In Archuleta County, hunting is a way of life for most families.
Wild game is said to be a priceless treat: you can't buy it from any butcher or supermarket. Compared to most domestic meat, wild game seems richer in flavor. It's been shown to be lower in fat and calories than farm-raised meat, and higher in protein and minerals like thiamine and niacin.
Wild game may have the same amount of cholesterol as beef or pork, but since wild game gets more exercise, it has considerably less fat than domestic meat. On an even better note, game meat lacks the chemicals commonly given to domestic animals.
It's come to my attention that many people would like to try eating wild game, but are inexperienced at preparing it. Game dinners often fall short of their potential because of this.
Fearing a "wild" taste, many cooks soak the game meat in salt water, and prepare it with strong seasonings that disguise the natural flavor. Then again, they might prepare it like domestic meat, and are disappointed when it comes out tough and dry. An important thing to note is that if the game has been handled improperly in the field, it may have an off-taste, regardless of how well it is prepared.
Perhaps your reasons for not eating wild game are simply due to an inability to hunt. If you work two jobs to make a living in Pagosa, are elderly or disabled, it is hard to stock your freezer for the winter months with any kind of nourishment other than the basics.
A resource that may help you procure game meat is available at the Archuleta County Department of Social Services. They now have applications on hand for individuals and families to receive confiscated elk and deer through the Colorado Division of Wildlife.
Precedence will be given to disabled and elderly individuals, people with medical needs requiring special diets (a doctor's statement is necessary), and low-income families. All other applicants will be considered after that.
Families and individuals applying for and receiving the meat must process and wrap their own game. A plus is that the Division of Wildlife will make arrangements for delivery to specific locations for individuals applying.
If you are interested in this program, applications can be picked up and returned to the Department of Social Services at 551 Hot Springs Boulevard. All applications will be handled on a first-come, first-served basis.
Dr. Scott Asay, a graduate of Palmer College of Chiropractic, shown here with wife Kris, daughter Hannah and son Noah, operates Asay Chiropractic and Wellness Center, formerly Craig Chiropractic, at 190 Talisman Drive, Suite C-4.
Asay's focuses are sports injury rehabilitation, pediatric care, soft tissue rehabilitation, contact reflex analysis and gentle adjusting techniques. A line of nutritional supplements is also available. The Center has a special offer, providing rehabilitative care for local student athletes.
Asay Chiropractic and Wellness Center is open Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday 8 a.m. to noon and 2 to 6 p.m. After hours and weekend appointments are available. Call 731-3344.
Claudio Martinez, 76, born May 1, 1925 in Lonetree, Colo., to Joe and Julia Martinez, passed away peacefully on Oct. 19, 2001, in Layton, Utah. He was the last survivor of 11 children.
He was a World War II veteran and served with the occupational forces in Japan. He lived a rich and beautiful life and was loved by all. No one was a stranger to him.
Surviving are his wife, Cordelia A.; daughters Patricia Stella Owen, Connie M. Carr and Lori M. Bedont; five grandchildren, Robbie, Jack, Emily, Tricia and Aaron; and forever sons, Jeffrey Owen, Robert Carr and Brian Graham.
Mass was said at 9 a.m. Oct. 22, 2001 in St. Rose of Lima Church in Layton following visitation the previous evening at Lindquist's Layton Mortuary. Burial was in Lindquist's Memorial Park, with military honors accorded.
The family extends heartfelt thanks to the staff at Salt Lake Nursing and Rehabilitation Center for their loving care of Mr. Martinez and also to Dr. Bruce Bertenshaw, Valeta and Sharon.
"Your are gone from our sight . . .
but never from our memories . . .
Gone from our touch . . .
but never our hearts." May God
hold you in the palm of his hand.
We love you with all our hearts.
Friends may send e-mail condolences at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jesus R. Loya
Jesus Ramos Loya of Pagosa Springs died Sunday, Oct. 7, 2001 at Lutheran Medical Center in Denver. Death was attributed to cancer but he also suffered from emphysema.
Mr. Loya was well known in the community for his knowledge of masonry. He was hired by Mayor Ross Aragon for the rock work done at the Archuleta Housing projects and was involved in many other projects - big and small - throughout the county.
He is survived by his wife, Elisa; children Socorro Juarez, Luz Galdames, Rogelio "Roy," Jesus and Elisa; siblings Mauro and Trinidad Loya, Elvira Loya de Chavez, Maria Loya de Chavez, Benito, Jose Maria de la Luz Loya, and Daniel. He was preceded in death by a brother, Alfonso. His godchild is Matilda Vialovos of Pagosa Springs.
Rosary services were held at 7 p.m. Thursday and mass of Christian burial at 9 a.m. Friday at St. Cajetan's Church in Denver. Interment was in Arvada Cemetery.
Mr. Loya had many friends and was very well-liked. He will be greatly missed and may God bless him.
Donations in his name would be appreciated and may be made to Vectra Bank in care of Jesus Loya Memorial Fund.