November 6, 2003 
Front Page

Use tax bid swamped: Caves wins school seat

By Richard Walter

Staff Writer

The voters of Archuleta County have spoken - loudly - and the message was the same across the state: No more taxes.

A much maligned Archuleta County use tax proposal was overwhelming trounced 3,003 to 350.

The plan would have enacted a 4-percent use tax on construction and building materials, including those used in oil and gas production and facilities, on motor vehicles purchased outside the county, and on building materials unrelated to oil and gas.

Revenues from the proposed taxes would have been shared equally by the town and county.

At the same time, voters in Archuleta School District 50 Joint gave the District 3 seat to Sandy Caves in a 1,777 to 1,027 win over former county commissioner Gene Crabtree.

Caves, asked to comment on her success, said, "I want to thank everyone for their support. Running was an incredible experience."

She said she looks forward to being "a positive factor on the school board and to serving with all the voters in mind."

Crabtree was aboard a ship in the Pacific and was unavailable for comment.

In District 2, Michael Haynes was unopposed for election to the seat he had been filling by appointment replacing Russel Lee, who moved from the district.

Haynes drew 2,103 votes.

County voters followed the same line as those across the state on the key issues - voting 2,660 to 655 against the proposals to stabilize real estate tax rates at 8 percent; against the proposal to allow gaming machines on the Front Range 2,323 to 1,106 and against the proposed $4 billion water bond issue by a margin of 2,731 to 609.

In Aspen Springs, voters defeated issues aimed at a temporary mill levy increase to fund further study of a proposed central water system; to remove term limit restrictions and to opt out of some of the restrictions of the Taxpayer Bill of Rights, a move known as "de-Brucing."

Those issues were defeated 161-100, 189-75 and 181-78 respectively.

Voters in the Piedra Park Metropolitan Improvement District in Arboles approved a measure eliminating term limits for officers 51-18 and approved 55-14 a measure to increase taxes $7,245 in the first year plus a 7.384 mill levy in ensuing years for purchase, operation and maintenance of district facilities.

In the Archuleta County portion of the Mount Allison subdistrict of Los Piños Fire Protection District, residents voted 118-42 in favor of increasing taxes $30,000 in the first year with a subsequent mill rate of 1.15.

Finally, in the Archuleta County portion of the Ignacio school district, voters for school board seats cast 113 ballots for Cathy Seibel, 75 for Betty Jo Quintana, 67 for Kenneth E. Guffey Jr., 57 for Jan Conway and 53 for David T. Thomson.

Overall, said June Madrid, county clerk, the voter turnout of 3,910 in Archuleta County was almost exactly 50 percent of the 7,900 registered voters in the county.

It is interesting to note that, despite the rise in the county's population, there are fewer registered voters now than in 2002.

The reason, Madrid said, is that the rolls were purged in the past year with inactive voters removed. The current 7,900 registered, she said, includes 5,625 considered active.

With eight different styles of ballots and a separate computer program needed for each, Madrid had expected the count would take a little longer than normal, but even she was surprised that it took as long as it did.

The final totals list came out of the computer at 10:44 p.m., three hours and 44 minutes after the final ballot was cast just 30 seconds before the 7 p.m. deadline.

She compared the turnout to the 1999 off-year mail-in ballot when the number voting also hit the 50 percent mark, with nine different ballot styles.

And, she noted, the turnout this year was much higher than that in the 2001 mail ballot when only 35 percent of voters cast opinions on the county sales tax increase proposal and on the hospital district tax increase bid.

As the evening wore on in the clerk's office Madrid opined, "This is the hardest election I've ever worked."

She was referring to the need to correlate ballots after a printing error forced reissue of ballots.

Some votes already had been cast when the error was discovered. A reorder was also found in error and by the time the actual ballots were distributed, it was determined some original votes would have to be copied for intent and then reregistered on the new ballot forms in order to be counted.

It was that process which slowed the final tabulations, combined with restructuring trays of ballots for an alphabetical search when they could not be found by numerical designation.

At one point, a crew of staff members were seated in a hallway outside the clerk's office going through lists individually to find missing ballots.

But it was not all confusion. In fact, the counting teams knew exactly what they were looking for and how determine voter intent and to compensate for voter error.

Feeding the individual ballots by hand into counting machines seemed to delay the process, what with all the computerized facilities surrounding the effort, but it was necessary because of the variety of ballots to be counted.

As is the norm, the phone began to ring as early as 8:30 p.m. with callers asking, "Who won?"

Some were frustrated when, after two or three calls, they had no answer, but most were simply resigned to wait.

When the final totals were printed out, a smiling Madrid distributed copies and told her staff to be prepared for "budget hearings tomorrow. I'll be out of the office for that reason."

And then, it was over.

All ballots counted, all totals double-checked, all calls answered, and the lights were turned out.


LID plans advance for Ranch


By Tom Carosello

Staff Writer

The formation of two local improvement districts within the Ranch Community is one step closer to reality following this week's meeting of the Archuleta County Board of Commissioners.

The board's actions this week were the latest in a series of steps taken to address upgrades aimed at Hackamore Place and Antelope Drive.

Approved Tuesday were a draft contract for design and engineering services for both thoroughfares to be performed by Civil Design Team, and a resolution authorizing improvements to Hackamore Place.

"What the (Hackamore) resolution basically says is once the engineering work is completed, we'll put the project out to bid for completion," explained Bill Steele, county administrator.

The fiscal responsibility for the upgrades falls to the Ranch Community/Pagosa Lakes Property Owners Associations, which have secured enough money to cover the cost of the Hackamore project, estimated at about $32,000.

The county will serve as the project's administrator while ensuring work is done according to county specifications, but will not contribute funds toward the effort.

The same stipulations hold for the Antelope project, but it is considerably more expensive, carrying a price tag of roughly $227,000.

That total has not yet been achieved, and one option being investigated by the county and the Ranch Community is the possibility of issuing "special assessment bonds" to cover some or all of the project costs.

The bonds would then be repaid with the collection of the revenues resulting from assessments levied against the properties benefitting from the project.

However, a memo to the board from Mary Weiss, county attorney, indicates that process is complicated, likely requiring a county-sponsored election and "the assistance of an attorney who has experience with issuing bonds to ensure the issuance is proper."

Another option being considered is the prospect of individuals fronting the required funds and being reimbursed at a later date, an offer that has been made by at least one individual in the past.

A third potential solution includes the notion of individuals fronting the money in conjunction with a bond issue, an event that apparently would not require an election.

In that case, the individuals who front the money would be given the bonds as payback.

All of the scenarios will get a closer look in the coming weeks.

Additional funding for the projects will eventually be supplied by Ranch Community residents - barring any snags, persons owning property on the targeted roads will be required to pay a share of the improvement cost.

The cost breakdown is a current estimate of $1,442 per lot for 12 lots in the Hackamore plan, and 35 lots at an estimated $3,461 each for the Antelope project. Lot owners will have the option to pay their portion in one lump sum or in up to five annual installments.

A public hearing will be scheduled to address the assessments, and if the majority of property owners are still amenable to those amounts, the process will move forward.

The projects have been in the works since April, and are tentatively scheduled for completion during spring or early summer of next year, weather permitting.

In other business this week, the board:

- authorized expenditures in the amount of $3,137.96 to cover the costs of additional refinements to the salary survey conducted by Lee & Burgess Associates earlier this year

- approved a reduction of landfill fees (from $8 per cubic yard to $6) for the Pagosa Area Water and Sanitation District; the reduction applies to the disposal of approximately 2,500 cubic yards of "biosolid waste" to be hauled to the landfill by PAWS

- approved a modification of premises application for Canyon Crest Lodge

- approved the addition of a member to the ownership listed on Chardoc LLC/Arboles Store beer and retail liquor licenses

- approved the release of the warranty bond for Elk Park Meadows Subdivision, Phase II

- approved a minor amendment to the conditional use permit for Nielsons Skanska Gravel Pit/Weber Pit No. 4 - allowing mining/crushing operations to be extended through Dec. 31 if necessary, and permitting the option to work Saturdays (allowable hours of operation are 7 a.m.-5 p.m.)

- approved the final plat for Bauer Townhouses, Unit 2, Lot 34 of San Juan River Resort

- approved the release of the warranty bond for Capstone Circle, Capstone Subdivision

- called the warranty bond for all roads in Ridgeview Subdivision in the amount of $9,000 (with the exception of the portion of Navajo Trail Drive between Bastille Drive and Seminole Drive)

- approved the final plat for Whispering Pines Townhouses, Phase V.


Sales taxes dive; town's income down $97,000

By Tess Noel Baker

Staff Writer

Pagosa Springs trustees got their second look at a proposed 2004 budget Tuesday night.

Town Administrator Mark Garcia presented board members with copies of the draft, inviting them to ask questions. He said sales tax receipts for 2003 continue to drop and are down just over 5 percent through August, a revenue decrease of just under $97,000 when compared to 2002. Town sales tax revenues make up an estimated 94 percent of total revenues. Property tax revenues, at $52,949, make up just 2 percent of the budget.

"In the first draft I had some higher numbers in sales tax receipts than we wanted," Garcia said. "We brought those down and trimmed as much as we could." Still, the draft budget reflects spending of about $56,000 in excess of revenues. That, he said, represents some maintenance road projects that were deferred this year and can only be deferred so long. If necessary at the end of 2004, the excess can come out of reserves or belts can be tightened further to make up the difference.

Garcia said staff has been working on an informal poll of various businesses to determine if the decline in sales tax receipts was related to tourism or construction - the area's two biggest industries. So far, the finger seems to point to tourism. Research efforts will continue.

In other business:

Garcia gave an update on road projects. Work on Hot Springs Boulevard and several small paving projects has been completed for the year. Final payment requests are expected, with a slight glitch on Hot Springs Boulevard. Garcia said the asphalt on that project did not meet specifications in final tests. Currently, the engineers and contractors are working to come up with a solution.

Work on repaving Talisman Drive, Village Drive and Pinon Causeway in a cooperative effort with the county has begun. Garcia said Strohecker Asphalt has started the curb and gutter work on Talisman and roto-milled Village Drive in preparation for paving the week of Nov. 10.

Recent rains have caused Village Drive to degrade even farther and Garcia said staff has been pressuring the paving company to fix the road as soon as possible.

The board approved a motion to enter into a long-term lease agreement with the Seeds of Learning board of directors for land located on the corner of Apache and 7th streets as soon as legal counsel has a chance to draft a contract.

Seeds of Learning, a nonprofit early childhood development center, is preparing to kick off a fund-raising drive to raise money needed to construct a new facility on this site. Originally, they came to the town board requesting an expansion at their current location at San Juan Street and Hot Springs Boulevard - a building also leased from the town. Board members expressed concerns regarding the best use of the property along Hot Springs Boulevard and suggested relocation instead of renovation.

The board also approved a preliminary plan for the Harman Park Subdivision. If approved in final form, the subdivision will create seven new commercial lots on 51.32 acres south of U.S. 160 at Piedra Road.

The first-time-ever fall clean-up week went fairly well, Garcia reported. Crews took away 15 Dumpsters of trash from locations around town and two dump truck loads of debris from curbside pickup.


New clues sought in two unsolved 1982 homicides

By Tess Noel Baker

Staff Writer

The remains of two people, victims of homicides in Pagosa Country, lie in a pair of pauper's graves in New Mexico.

Their names: Jane and John Doe. Their case: unsolved.

After 21 years, it is, however, garnering renewed attention.

Archuleta County Sheriff's Department Detective Carl Smith said he became curious about the murders after talking with Neal Smith, the county sheriff when both bodies were found in 1982.

The first body, that of a female, was found by a local rancher Sept. 19 in the San Juan River about 75 feet over the New Mexico State line off of County Road 500, south of the Carracas bridge. Because of the location, her body was taken to Albuquerque for an autopsy.

A little over a month later, Oct. 22, 1982, a man's body was found half buried in a sand bar in the same river, this time 100 feet on the Colorado side of the state line. Because of his proximity to the other body, the medical examiner in Albuquerque handled that autopsy as well. Both bodies were severely decomposed.

According to the autopsy reports, Jane Doe was a white woman in her late 20s or early 30s. She was about 5 foot 5 inches tall and 115 pounds. At the time of her death, she was wearing Wrangler jeans, a purple halter top, a purple, yellow and blue floral jacket and at least two pieces of jewelry - a silver heart and an Italian love horn. She had been dead several weeks when her body was found.

John Doe, a white male, was thought to have been in his mid-20s when he was found dead. He was apparently very muscular with brown, blond hair and a red beard. He was wearing brown corduroy pants, white tennis shoes, and a shirt from the Lazy B guest ranch in Fallon, Nev. The back side of the shirt had a map of Fallon on it.

The cases were ruled as homicides - and possibly connected. The cause of death in both cases is known but Smith is keeping that information to himself for the time being as an investigative tool.

According to the investigation at the time, the dead man's name was possibly Rick or Richard. He and the woman may have been seen together hitchhiking west on U.S. 160 near Cat Creek in the weeks before their deaths.

Other agencies involved in the original investigation included the Rio Arriba County New Mexico Sheriff's Department and the New Mexico State Police.

"The leads in this case have not been exhausted," Smith said. New technology may also help at least identify the victims. He has sent the information from the bodies to the Federal Bureau of Investigation for comparison on their Violent Crimes Apprehension Program. The program is a clearinghouse for major crimes, missing persons and unidentified bodies.

Anyone with any information regarding this case, including the identity of the victims, is asked to call Smith at (970) 264-8470 as soon as possible.



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Weekend showers may bolster San Juan snowpack

By Tom Carosello

Staff Writer

Put away the ghoul and goblin masks; break out the ski masks.

Halloween has passed, and costumes of a toastier kind are now in style after Pagosa Country's first winter storm of the season dumped nearly four feet of snow across peak elevations in the past week.

While areas close to town received steady rain mixed with occasional flurries, elevations above 8,500 feet received amounts ranging from a light dusting to over 44 inches between Friday night and Tuesday morning.

Winter sports enthusiasts heading to Wolf Creek Ski Area for opening day will encounter over 30 inches of fresh white when they take to the slopes tomorrow, and more is expected in the next few days.

"There's a decent chance for some light snow across the southern San Juans through (tonight) and into Friday evening," says Dave Nadler, a forecaster with the National Weather Service office in Grand Junction.

"Then the chance for heavier precipitation picks up heading into Saturday and Sunday," added Nadler. "Lower elevations will most likely see only rain, but a few inches of snow is possible above 9,000 feet.

"This series of weak disturbances isn't going to produce nearly as much as last weekend's system, but should add a little to snowfall totals across the Four Corners through early Monday," concluded Nadler.

According to Nadler, partly-cloudy skies this morning will give way to overcast conditions this afternoon with the possibility for light rain or snow showers after midnight.

High temperatures should peak in the mid-50s, while lows are predicted to settle into the upper teens.

Friday calls for mostly-cloudy skies, a 20-percent chance for scattered flurries or light rain, highs in the 50s and lows in the 20s.

The chance for rain/snow showers increases to 30 percent for Saturday and Sunday. Highs each day should reach the upper 40s to low 50s, while lows should fall into the upper teens.

A lingering chance for snow is included in the forecast for Monday, as are mostly-cloudy skies and highs in the 45-55 range. Lows are predicted in the 20s.

Clouds are expected to thin out by late afternoon Tuesday; Veterans Day highs are forecast in the 40s, while lows should drop into the teens.

Mostly-sunny skies are predicted in the forecast for Wednesday, along with highs in the upper 40s and lows in the teens.

The average high temperature recorded last week at Stevens Field was 54 degrees. The average low for the week was 28. Precipitation totals for the week amounted to 1.67 inches.

The Pagosa Ranger District lists the current regional fire danger as "low." Conditions are subject to change rapidly this time of year; for updates and more information, call the district office at 264-2268.

The latest reports from the U.S. Department of Agriculture describe regional drought conditions as "severe."

According to the latest SNOTEL data, snowpack levels in the Upper San Juan River Basin are currently at 156 percent of average.

San Juan River flow ranged from approximately 30 cubic feet per second to 180 cubic feet per second last week. The river's historic median flow for the week of Nov. 6 is roughly 80 cubic feet per second.


Sports Page

Parks & Rec

Basketball underway for some youngsters; others registering

By Joe Lister Jr.

SUN Columnist

Players 7 and 8 years old began basketball play last week with two practices, and a very successful clinic put on by Bob Lynch, high school varsity girls basketball coach.

Approximately 45 young athletes, five coaches, and some current high school basketballers, had a great clinic Saturday.

Regular league play began Tuesday, and games will be played Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, with the league ending on or before Dec. 6.

Older groups

Registration forms for the 9-10, and 11-12 groups can be picked up at Town Hall.

The forms are due no later than 5 p.m. Nov. 21.

Please stop by Town Hall for applications. They will also be passed out at the public schools by Nov. 17. All late registrants will be put on a waiting list.


For the most part, 2003 has been a good year for park and town property as vandalism seemed to be down.

We did have a portable toilet tipped over Halloween night. This was a very bad situation because chemicals spilled on to the grass at South Pagosa Park. If anyone has information about the vandals, please call 264-4151, Ext. 231.

Skateboarders and bikers -please leave the picnic tables in the parks for picnic enthusiasts. The costs incurred by the parks department from you using the picnic tables as ramps and jumps is totally unnecessary.

If we see tables being moved or used as a skateboard/bike apparatus, we will immediately call the police and have them write a ticket for defacing public property.

Again, overall 2003 was a very good year. Thank you all for caring about our town and the clean, safe parks.

Application deadline

Friday is the deadline for all applications for the recreation department supervisor's job. Applications and job descriptions can be picked up at Town Hall during regular working hours.

Volleyball finals

The 2003 coed volleyball league ended last night. Results were not in by press time. In the winners' bracket we had Up and At Em vs. Jann C. Pitcher Real Estate.

Results will be posted in next week's column.


Lady Pirates take first game of regional tourney

By Karl Isberg

Staff Writer

Pagosa began play at the Region D volleyball tournament on a high note, defeating Colorado Academy of Denver, 3-1.

The Mustangs put Pagosa to the test as the match began, taking a 9-4 lead before the Ladies woke up and put the train in gear, getting two points on Mustang errors, a kill by Courtney Steen and an ace by Liza Kelley.

Colorado Academy came back with three unanswered points, using the quick set effectively - a sign of things to come later in the day.

With the Mustangs ahead 14-10, Pagosa made a move, getting a kill from Lori Walkup, a point on a CA hitting error, a stuff by Caitlyn Jewell and a point on a Mustang line violation. The score was knotted 14-14.

The teams tied at 16-16 and 18-18 before Laura Tomforde got a roll shot to fall. Tomforde then killed down the line to put a 20th point on the scoreboard for Pagosa.

CA would not go away and put together a run of five unanswered points, all courtesy Lady Pirate unforced errors - another omen of what would take place later in tournament action.

A Mustang hit went out of bounds and the Ladies found themselves back in a tie game, 23-23, compliments of two consecutive Mustang errors,

A Colorado Academy kill went down inside the block and on the next exchange, it seemed the Mustangs put a winning point down.

Not so, said the referee, who admitted she blew an early whistle, while the Ladies still had the ball in play following a dig of a Mustang hit. Pagosa took immediate advantage of the replay, getting a point on a Mustang setting error and another on a mis-hit by the opponent.

Tomforde killed off the pass, surprising the Mustang defenders, and the Ladies had the 27-25 win.

Pagosa retained the momentum at the start of the second game.

Jewell continued what was arguably her best match of the season, scoring with a kill and a roll shot. Walkup nailed a kill and Pagosa was up 5-1.

The Mustangs closed to 6-5 but Walkup took back serve and scored with a kill off a bad pass. Kelley stuffed a Mustang hitter, Bri Scott stuffed a quick-set attack for a point then added another score with a kill, After CA scored, Scott came back with a kill inside the block. The Mustangs responded and Pagosa led 11-7

Jewell rose to the occasion as the Ladies pushed ahead. The junior middle hitter slammed an errant Mustang pass to the floor and kept Mustang hitters worried at the net with her presence.

Brandi Whomble aced a serve for the Ladies and Kelly got a roll shot down. Pagosa was ahead 21-14. Colorado Academy put together a run, scoring on a putback of a bad Pagosa pass and with a quick attack. The Ladies handed over two points on unforced errors and the Mustangs trailed by three, 21-18.

Steen closed off the rally with a kill cross court, the Mustangs committed a serve-receive error and Jewell again stuffed the CA quick attack. The Mustangs would score once more before Jewell swung outside and nailed a kill down the line to seal the 25-19 win.

The third game was all Lady Pirates. Jewell started the trip with a stuff block of an attempted tip. Walkup tipped for a point, Scott nailed a kill from the middle.

The Mustangs were generous with unforced errors as their confidence eroded and they suffered breakdowns in technique. Pagosa was in front 6-3.

Scott extended the lead to 9-3 with two putbacks of bad passes and another kill from the middle. A Mustang made contact with the net: Pagosa 10, CA 3.

Pagosa was up 11-7 when the Ladies managed a six-point run, with Scott at the serve for five of the points. Steen hit a kill, Scott forced two serve-receive errors, Steen killed again, a Mustang hit went out and Jewell again stuffed an attempted tip.

Ahead 17-8, Pagosa got a kill from Jewell from outside and two charity points from Colorado Academy. The Mustangs scored one more time, then handed over the final two points of the game with errors. Pagosa had the 25-10 victory in what was a solid performance in all phases of the game.

"Colorado Academy came out strong," said Lady Pirate coach Penné Hamilton. "They were intense, but our girls just took care of business. They didn't get rattled; they just played the game, and played it well."


Kills: Jewell 9, Scott and Walkup 8 each

Assists: Walkup 14, Tomforde 10

Ace serves: Kelley, Scott and Steen 2 each

Solo blocks: Jewell 3, Kelley and Walkup 1 each

Digs: Steen 8


Pagosa loses to Manitou Springs in second tourney match

By Karl Isberg

Staff Writer

Sometimes you get beat, sometimes, you give it away.

Manitou Springs, the Lady Pirates' second opponent at the Region D volleyball tourney, is a fine, young team, but prone to mistakes, to mental collapse. Beatable.

When the Ladies - also young and possessed of talent - met Manitou, it would be a question of who made the fewest mistakes.

It was Manitou that nabbed the 3-1 win over the Ladies with a lot of help from Pagosa's side of the net.

The first game of the match went to the Lady Pirates 25-17 as Pagosa continued in the groove set against Colorado Academy.

The teams tied at 5-5 and 6-6. From there, Pagosa went in the lead and never relinquished it.

Pagosa got kills from Caitlyn Jewell and Courtney Steen, then scored with a solo block by Jewell to lead 12-7. The teams traded points in fits and starts and, with a kill by Bri Scott, Pagosa was ahead 17-11. Lori Walkup scored with a kill, Scott got a hit down. Pagosa was up 20-16.

Steen scored and took back serve. Jewell got a point with a tip and Steen nailed another kill. Manitou committed a hitting error to put Pagosa on the brink of the win, 24-16. A Lady Pirate serve fault turned over a point, but Jewell put an end to things, killing for the final point.

Manitou held the lead in the second game, going ahead 14-10. A Mustang run put them in front 20-10, but Jewell scored with a solo block and Liza Kelley hit a successful roll shot. A Mustang passing error gave Pagosa a 13th points.

Then Pagosa short-circuited, giving up four unanswered points with unforced errors.

Kelley managed one more point with a tip, but Manitou killed from outside and sealed the 25-14 win on a Pagosa hitting error.

Pagosa led through much of the third game, before melting down in the final phase of action.

The Lady Pirates and the Mustangs tied at 10-10 and the Ladies went in front 12-10 on Manitou mistakes. The teams tied 13-13 and 16-16.

Manitou gave up two points with mistakes then the floor fell out from beneath the Lady Pirates. Poor passing and serve receive, and an inability to stop the quick-set attack doomed the Pagosa effort. Manitou ran off nine unanswered points to secure the 25-18 win.

Pagosa never had a lead in the fourth game of the match. The Ladies came close but, again, committed too many errors to hand over easy points. Manitou was ahead 10-8 when the Mustangs scored five times - four of the points given up with mistakes on the Pagosa side of the net.

Pagosa refused to cede thee game and match without a fight. Manitou was in front 20-14 when the Mustangs surrendered two points on errors and Jewell killed off the block. Manitou captured the momentum and went ahead 22-17 before Pagosa responded with two points - one on a dump off the pass by Laura Tomforde, the second on a block by Jewell.

A Lady Pirate serve fault gave up a point but Walkup responded with a kill. A Mustang kill went down off the block. Manitou led 24-20.

The game was not over, and the Ladies put up a valiant struggle. Walkup killed for a point then put a roll shot down in front of Manitou's back row. The Mustangs surrendered a point with a passing error and led 24-23.

The affair ended not with a bang, but with a whimper: a final mistake. The game went to the Mustangs when a Pagosa player made contact with the net.

"We began the match just like we should; things were fine," said Coach Penné Hamilton. "We played strong and held on for the win. From that point on, we made too many mistakes. Too many mistakes with our passing, too many serve mistakes. We couldn't run our offense and, at any number of points, we seemed to shut down mentally. You can't stop playing aggressively and expect to win at this level."


Kills: Walkup 9, Jewell 8, Steen 7

Assists: Tomforde 10, Walkup 9

Ace serves: Walkup and Whomble 1 each

Solo blocks: Jewell 3, Kelley and Scott 1 each

Digs: Tomforde 10, Whomble 9


Pagosa falls to Platte Valley powerhouse

By Karl Isberg

Staff Writer

Throughout the day at the Region D tournament at Kersey, the host and No. 1 seed Platte Valley Broncos established the fact they are one of the contenders for the Class 3A volleyball championship this year.

Platte Valley dispatched of each of its three opponents in three games Nov. 1, including the Lady Pirates, in the final regular match of the day.

Platte Valley did not come alive in either of its first two matches of the day. The Broncos did, however, begin to fire away at peak capacity in the match against Pagosa.

The Lady Pirates battled the Broncos valiantly, before succumbing to superior offensive power especially in the person of the Broncos' 6-0 senior middle hitter Callie Vrooman who proved virtually unstoppable throughout the match.

Pagosa jumped out to an early 6-2 lead in the first game, getting kills from Caitlyn Jewell and Liza Kelley. Kelley, a sophomore outside hitter scored twice, with a roll shot and an off-speed shot to a hole in the middle of the Bronco defense.

Platte Valley tied the score as Vrooman came alive, running a deadly slide to the outside - a play that would work again and again.

The Broncos were up 9-7 and 11-8 but Pagosa got an off-speed hit from Courtney Steen to draw within three, 10-13.

Jewell hit down the line and Lori Walkup scored with a solo block. Bri Scott scored off a bad Bronco pass and the Ladies were behind 15-14.

It was a pattern that would be repeated in each game: Pagosa would stay close through the mid point of the game, then fall victim to the Bronco attack.

The Pagosa blocks were not there as Vrooman went on the attack. Platte Valley moved the ball quickly from passer to setter to hitter and scored six unanswered points to lead 21-14.

Scott scored with a put-back of an errant Bronco pass, but Vrooman responded with a kill off the slide.

Laura Tomforde put a tip to the floor off the pass, but the Broncos replied with a score. A serve error gave Pagosa its last point as the Broncos powered ahead to the 25-17 win.

In the second game. Pagosa led early, 5-4. Caitlin Forrest scored with a tip and the Broncos handed over three points on unforced errors to give the Lady Pirates a 9-7 lead.

As they did in the first game, the Broncos put together a lengthy run of unanswered points, going out to a 13-9 lead, then gave up two points with an interference call and a lift. The home team had a 13-11 lead.

The Lady Pirates would manage only three more points and would give away six unearned points to the Broncos as Platte Valley secured the 25-14 victory.

The teams stayed close again in the third game, but the Lady Pirates gave away too many points with unforced mistakes.

Walkup killed off the pass and the Ladies trailed 14-12. Then, the same old story: four errors that surrendered points and three kills by Vrooman that went untouched to the floor. The Broncos led 20-12.

Pagosa managed five more points in the match, four courtesy Bronco errors, the fifth on a dump off the pass by Tomforde. Platte Valley had the 25-17 win, the match, and the tournament championship.


Kills: Jewell 6, Walkup 4

Assists: Tomforde 7

Ace serves: Kelley 1

Solo blocks: Scott and Tomforde 2 each

Digs: Steen 7, Walkup 6


Lady Pirate season ends with playoff loss to Colorado Academy

By Karl Isberg

Staff Writer

A trip to the state Class 3A tournament came down to one game, to 15.

Three teams tied for second place at the Region D tournament: Pagosa, Manitou Springs and Colorado Academy.

In regular pool-play action, Pagosa beat Colorado Academy and lost to Manitou Springs. Manitou beat Pagosa and lost to Colorado Academy. Colorado Academy lost to Pagosa and beat Manitou.

On the basis of win percentage, Pagosa was the top seed and, thus, waited to meet the winner of a 15-point game between the other two teams.

As they had in earlier action, Colorado Academy defeated Manitou.

Whichever team won the game between the Lady Pirates and the Mustangs would advance to the championship tournament this weekend. The loser would go home and wait for next year.

Pagosa will not make the trip to Denver.

The Ladies surrendered five points on unforced errors and could not get blocks in place at the net to deal with the Mustang attack.

CA scored first, courtesy a Pagosa hitting error. Pagosa tied the game with a tip but the Mustangs snatched the momentum with a kill off the block, a stuff block and another point on a Pagosa passing error.

Liza Kelley got a roll shot to drop for a point and Bri Scott hit a kill to pull the Ladies to within two points, 5-3.

A ball hit by the Mustangs rolled along the tape at the top of the net and dropped in front of Pagosa hitters, but a Colorado Academy ball went out of bounds to surrender a point.

Pagosa would not score again.

A Pagosa player crossed the line beneath the net and a Mustang quick attack went to the floor.

Colorado Academy scored with an ace and a kill then got a 10th point when the Pagosa back row was caught napping.

The Mustangs cruised to the 15-4 win with a solo block, a kill of a quick set, a kill off the block, a Lady Pirate passing error and a Pagosa attack that went out of bounds.

"To me," said Coach Penné Hamilton, "a playoff game to 15, with rally scoring, is so quick you have to take control from the first serve. You have to play hard from the start, play to win. You can't wait to the next point to get started."

The Pagosa season ended a level higher than the 2002 season, when the team did not advance out of district tournament play. The Ladies won this year's district tourney and posted a 16-11 record.

"This season has been a learning experience," said the coach. "We moved to rally scoring and had to make adjustments, had to work to take the level of play up a notch. I have every one of the starters coming back next season. We need to use our experience from this season to our advantage and improve in several areas. We won't be able to say 'we're young' next year. It will be time to produce. It will be the last year for many of these girls."


Riverwalk project gets nod with federal grant

By Tess Noel Baker

Staff Writer

After two years of planning and research, a Riverwalk enhancement project is a go.

Mark Garcia, town administrator, said an additional 1,540 feet of trail is planned to skirt the wetlands adjacent to Town Hall. The trail will begin behind the building, wind along the east side of the river and end at a point about halfway down 6th Street.

It will add a piece of the puzzle, but fall short of connecting to the point where the Riverwalk currently ends at Bank of the San Juans on Hot Springs Boulevard.

Garcia said because a development on privately-held land between the bank and the community remains in the planning stages, they decided to stop short of connecting the trails. Eventually, that is the plan.

The town was awarded a $145,000 federal grant to help fund the project. An additional $65,800 in matching funds was put up by the town. Garcia said because of the federal involvement, the same studies were required of this project as are required to build an interstate.

Now, construction on the trail is set to go to bid next month. Depending on the weather, Garcia said, they will try to get things underway yet this fall. If that fails, construction will begin early next spring. The trail surface will be either asphalt or concrete, and the path will have at least one elevated walkway over the wetland area.

Interpretive signage regarding area wildlife is in the development stages.


Denver Christian proves Goliath doesn't always lose

By Tom Carosello

Staff Writer

Anyone familiar with the Class 2A football scene knew Pagosa Springs faced a monumental challenge in the form of host Denver Christian prior to Saturday's playoff opener.

The task before Pagosa Head Coach Sean O'Donnell and the relatively young Pirates became more daunting after starters Jared Kinkead and Manuel Madrid went down with injuries during pre-game workouts.

The powerhouse Crusaders, of the Denver Metro League, feature a roster comprised of no less than 18 playoff-tested seniors and entered the contest with an overall mark of 8-1 and No. 2 state ranking.

The result: chalk one up for Goliath.

Denver Christian's mission statement, included on programs handed out prior to the game, indicates its students are equipped to serve God "through academic excellence integrated with a reformed biblical perspective ..."

However, a "reformed biblical perspective" apparently won't honor the traditional David-and-Goliath outcome on the gridiron, as evidenced by the Crusaders' 43-6 victory on a chilly, overcast afternoon.

Initially it looked as if Pagosa's upset bid would get off to a quick start when Pirate senior David Kern intercepted Denver Christian quarterback Kenny Katte on the game's second play and returned the ball to the Crusader 30-yard line.

However the Crusader defense, which held opponents to an average of five points throughout the regular season, held Pagosa to no gain on fourth and 5 to regain possession at the 25.

Behind an offensive line that outweighed the Pirate defensive front by an average of over 30 pounds per man, Katte directed a ground-based Crusader scoring drive punctuated by a 2-yard run from Tyler Henry with 6:02 remaining in the opening period.

Trailing 7-0, the Pirates took over on their own 30 after a 20-yard kickoff return from Kory Hart, but were unable to convert on third and long and the Crusaders were soon within striking range after Jacob Vriesman returned the resulting punt to the Pagosa 25.

The Crusaders took a 14-0 lead three plays later after Katte hit flanker Eric Colby in the end zone for a 12-yard score with 2:44 to play in the first quarter.

Strong running from Pirate tailback Jeremy Caler moved Pagosa to near midfield on the ensuing series, but a sack on third and 3 ended the drive and Denver Christian took over after Kern's punt to the Crusader 38.

Spurred by a bone-crunching hit from Pagosa linebacker Bubba Martinez on a second-down run from Denver Christian tailback Travis Bowles, the Pirates forced the Crusaders to punt after a quick three and out.

Pagosa took over on its own 33, but a third-down sack at the 20 forced a punt, and another good return from Vriesman to the Pirate 15 enabled the Crusaders to quickly extend their lead on a scoring run from Kirk Nieuwenhuis.

Although the extra-point kick rattled off the right upright, the Crusaders led 20-0 with 7:27 to play in the half, and soon had the ball at midfield after the Pirates were held to three and out on the following series.

Nieuwenhuis scored from 38 yards out two plays later to make it 26-0, and a successful two-point conversion pass from Katte to Henry put the Crusaders up 28-0 with under five minutes till the break.

The teams then traded punts in the final four minutes, with neither being able to mount a scoring threat before halftime.

Momentum seemed to swing slightly early in the second half - after setting up for the opening series at its own 25, Pagosa moved to midfield on a pair of determined runs from Hart.

Kern then moved the Pirates inside the 30 with a 16-yard scramble followed by a strike to flanker Brett Ford at the 24, then hit Ford again to set up first and goal inside the 10 a few plays later.

Caler capped the drive with a 5-yard burst, and Pagosa trailed 28-6 with 6:42 left in the third after Daniel Aupperle's extra-point kick missed outside the left upright.

The Crusaders turned the ball over on downs on the following possession after a third-down reverse was snuffed by Hart and Mike Valdez and a fourth-down screen was spoiled by Kern at the Pagosa 30.

The Pirates crossed their own 45 on the following series, but an interception by Henry late in the quarter thwarted the drive, and the Crusaders eventually took a 35-6 lead after a 13-yard touchdown pass from Katte to Vriesman early in the final period.

Denver Christian would do little wrong from that point on, and a bright spot for Pagosa - a fumble at the Crusader 43 recovered by Kern - did not factor as a relentless defense held the Pirates scoreless for the remainder of the game.

The Crusaders added a late touchdown on a 8-yard run from Henry to make it 41-6, then got two more points when a botched snap on the point-after kick was picked up by Katte, who completed a pass to Luke Denooy to make the game's final margin 43-6.

With reference to the loss of Madrid and Kinkead prior to the game, "That kind of sums up how our season went for us - guys consistently getting hurt at key times; we just weren't very lucky in that regard this year," said O'Donnell after the game.

"But for us to be able to beat that team, they would've had to do a lot of things wrong and we would've needed to play a perfect game and then some," added O'Donnell.

The loss evened Pagosa's overall record at 5-5, marking the end to a season that saw the Pirates claim at least a share of the Intermountain League title for the fifth straight year.

In summary, "More than anything I'm proud of the kids we had at the end of the season and the way they were able to battle through adversity and still get to the playoffs," said O'Donnell.

"But it's always tough to say goodbye to another good group of seniors."


Pagosa 0 0 6 0 - 6

D. Christian 14 14 0 15 - 43

First Quarter

D. Ch. - Henry 2 run (kick good)

D. Ch. - Colby 12 pass from Katte (kick


Second Quarter

D. Ch. - Nieuwenhuis 20 run (kick good)

D. Ch. - Nieuwenhuis 38 run (2-point try

good on Henry pass from Katte)

Third Quarter

Pag - Caler 5 run

Fourth Quarter

D. Ch. - Vriesman 13 pass from Katte

D. Ch. - Henry 8 run (2-point try good on

Denooy pass from Katte)


Sanders, Gill lead five soccer Pirates named all-conference

By Richard Walter

Staff Writer

It should come as no surprise to any Southwestern League soccer fans that Kyle Sanders and Levi Gill of Pagosa Springs were the leading vote getters in balloting for all-conference honors.

They are joined on the elite list by three Pirate teammates: senior Kevin Muirhead, junior keeper Caleb Forrest and senior sweeper Ryan Goodenberger.

Sanders, a senior striker who led the state in scoring for the second consecutive year with 38 goals, giving him 103 for his four-year career, was everyone's logical choice.

Gill, who became the league's premier sweeper in this, his junior year, had 69 block/takeaways on the season and was continually credited for turning foes' attacks into Pagosa opportunities.

Muirhead, who missed three games with injuries, was the team's second leading scorer (tied with Moe Webb at 7) and the leader in assists with nine.

Forrest, called by coach Lindsey Kurt-Mason the "front end of a two-man keeper team I'd put up against any in the state," was statistically one of the very best, backing up the coach's claim.

He recorded 207 saves while allowing 11 goals in 970 minutes in net. He also turned in nine block/takeaways and two assists while playing outside of goal.

Goodenberger, Gill's running mate at sweeper, was the leader of the honorable mention list after having been named all-conference as a junior last year.

This year he improved his statistics with 52 block/takeaways and added three assists.

Normally, 11 players are selected for all-conference honors and five for honorable mention. This year, however, because of a tie in the voting, 12 were named all conference and six honorable mention.

Named all-conference from other teams were Carlos Moreno, Saul Hurtado, Justin Beiringer and Alan Butler of Center; Mike Jefferson of Bayfield; Peter Helland and Ryan Housman of Crested Butte and Dawson White of Telluride.

Others with honorable mention were Hanley Fansler and Matt Horner of Telluride, Clemente Sandoval and Antonio Aguilar of Center and Nick Catmur of Crested Butte.

To top off the Pirate's league title season and appearance in the Class 3A Sweet 16 as the number-seven seed, coach Kurt-Mason was named the league's coach of the year.

The Pirates' 13-3 season record included losses to two of the four teams in the Final Four, Salida and Holy Family. The latter defeated Salida 1-0 in semifinals then carried number-one ranked Faith Christian to an overtime shootout Tuesday before losing 3-2 in the state championship match.



Hazel B. Carlson

Hazel B. Carlson, of Pagosa Springs, died Nov. 2, 2003, in Davidsonville, Md., at the age of 89.

Hazel Blanch Story was born in Walters, Okla. in 1914 and moved to Denver, Colo. as a small girl. At the age of 20, she met her husband, Albert Carlson. They raised their two children, Shirley and Donald, in the Congress Park neighborhood of Denver and Hazel managed a dry cleaners for Silver State.

Hazel and Albert retired from Denver to Pagosa Springs in 1978. They were married for more than 62 years when Albert died.

Hazel is survived by her daughter, Shirley Hughes; five grandchildren, Scott Carlson of Denver, Eric Carlson of Grand Junction, Kurt Carlson of Chula Vista, Calif., Rick Hughes of Alexandria, Va., and Heather Witwer of Golden; and nine great-grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held 3 p.m. Nov. 18 at Rockland Community Church in Golden.

Bob E. Hogan

A memorial service was held Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2003, in Carlsbad, N.M. for Bob E. Hogan, a former Pagosa Springs resident and appraiser for the Archuleta County assessor's office.

The service was in Otis Baptist Church with the Rev. Eugene Ray officiating and interment was in Carlsbad Cemetery.

The Carlsbad Veterans Honor Guard performed military graveside honors and there was no visitation.

Robert Emmet "Bob" Hogan was born May 31, 1930, in Cedar Rapids, Iowa to John P. and Mary Cain Hogan. he was raised and educated in Cedar Rapids and later moved to California with his family.

Bob enlisted in the U.S. Navy Jan. 12, 1951, and was honorably discharged Nov. 29, 1954. After his discharge, he met and married Cleo Davis and they had two children, Verona and Tom. Both Cleo and Tom preceded him in death.

He later moved to Pagosa Springs where he was employed for 12 years by the Archuleta County assessor's office. It was there he met Barbara Sivers. They married in 1989. He retired in 1992 and they moved to Carlsbad.

He was a past member of the International Order of the Odd Fellows.

Bob received home care from Vista Care Family Hospice making it possible for his final days to be filled with unconditional love from everyone around him. Arrangements were by West Funeral Home of Carlsbad.

Survivors are his wife Barbara in Carlsbad; a daughter, Verona Hogan-Snow and stepsons Bruce and Zeke Sivers, all of Ignacio; a stepdaughter, Barbara Voorhis of Pagosa Springs; a sister, Bonita McIver of Fallbrook, Calif.; 11 grandchildren and one great grandchild.

Donations may be made in Bob's name to Vista Care Family Hospice, 601 N. Canal St., Carlsbad, N.M. 88220.


Inside The Sun

Concerns voiced about town sign code

By Tess Noel Baker

Staff Writer

When it comes to the Pagosa Springs sign code - revised in May - the word is out.

As business owners begin to trip the triggers for a review of signage, some have voiced concerns with the code.

At a special town board meeting Wednesday, Allan Bunch, owner of the River Center, said the code was too restrictive in some areas. He presented those in attendance with a color photo of the center and asked if anyone had a comment on the signage.

The response was positive.

"I have twice as much as allowed by current codes," he said. According to his reading of the current code, the restriction of one square foot of signage to one lineal foot of lot frontage would limit the businesses in the center to 300 square feet of signage. Adding up all of the signage seen from the highway and those signs under the overhang came to 540 square feet.

Town Administrator Mark Garcia said under the variance process Bunch could present his sign plan to the design review board, the planning commission and ask for a variance.

Both Garcia and members of the town council said the whole purpose of the variance process is to give business owners a place to go when their situation doesn't fit within the restrictions of the code because it is impossible to plan for every scenario. Since the ordinance passed in May, seven variances have been issued. In most cases, a compromise was reached to give business owners an extension of between three and five years to bring signs into compliance with the codes.

Bunch said signage is a subjective area that should be left up to the business owner.

"I have a moralistic problem with telling a business what kind of sign they can have," he said.

In the case of the River Center, he said the signs serve two purposes, first to catch people's eye driving by and, second, to convince them to stop or come back again.

"The best I can hope is maybe they recognize it has a shopping center, or maybe the kids see the ice cream cone, maybe," he said.

Bunch asked the board to reconstitute the sign committee and take another look at the code. He apologized several times for not commenting during the initial review last year.

Garcia and the members of the town board at the meeting, Bill Whitbread, Mayor Ross Aragon and Jerry Jackson said the initial citizens committee - made up of several business owners and town staff - spent nine months working on the code and asked for input every step of the way. They researched sign codes from several other communities both in Colorado and around the country as a basis for their decisions and mounted several discussions before coming to a conclusion.

Even in the final public hearings, Garcia said, concerns from business owners were addressed in an effort to compromise between those who wanted a more restrictive code and those who wanted more freedoms for business owners. The resulting document passed in May.

Whitbred said even after all that, the sign code isn't perfect. "It's impossible to please all the people all the time," he said. However, he said, the board can't be expected to change the law every time it makes one individual unhappy.

He and the other board members suggested that Bunch go ahead and work through the variance process.

A log is being kept of all concerns and variances. When a review of the code does come up again, probably in about five years Whitbred said, the board will consider changes at that time.


Connections Count: Theme for National Family Week

You've probably heard the ancient proverb, "It takes a village to raise a child," but what does it take to build the village, or any community, for that matter?

According to the Alliance of Children and Families (, an advocacy group that provides services to nonprofit child- and family-serving and economic empowerment organizations, strong families are the center of strong communities.

In fact, that is the message the group hopes to send during its 35th annual National Family Week, Nov. 23-29.

This year's National Family Week theme, "Connections Count," embraces the premise that children live better lives when their families are strong, and families are strong when they live in communities that connect them to economic opportunities, social networks and services. These "connections" include access to reliable transportation, employment opportunities, education, childcare and support from community networks and institutions, according to the alliance.

"Ordinary families are extraordinarily important to our communities and our country," says Peter Goldberg, president and CEO of the Alliance for Children and Families. "When America's diverse families and children are healthy, our nation prospers. That's why we hope everyone will take time during National Family Week to honor the connections that support and strengthen families year-round."

Here are some ideas from the alliance to help you make the most of family connections in your community:

- Extend your family. Plan a family supper with neighbors, or participate in a neighborhood improvement effort

- Write a thank-you note to someone who has been especially helpful to you, such as your family doctor, or your child's teacher, day-care provider or guidance counselor. The length and complexity are up to you. Keep it simple and specific, and speak from the heart

- Adopt a military family. Send a thank-you note to a person presently serving in the Armed Forces and lend your support to his or her family. Contact an armed services base in your area for help

- Select an issue important to your family, and work with local officials to effect change

- Plan a summit - invite area leaders and residents to discuss issues that are important to your community

- Support public officials and initiatives that enable families to thrive

- As an employer, consider family-friendly work options like flexible hours or time off to attend school functions. Encourage employees to volunteer for community benefit projects

- Lend support to National Family Week activities throughout your community. Encourage schools to participate by offering art and essay contests for students, hosting a variety of activities for families, inviting students to volunteer on community projects, and opening their facilities to events planned in their communities.

According to Goldberg, it's no mere coincidence that this annual celebration, established in 1968 by Sam Wiley, a teacher and administrator in Indianapolis, occurs during the week of Thanksgiving.

"Families traditionally connect and celebrate during Thanksgiving week, so it's a perfect time to thank one another, as well as the other individuals and organizations who help the family thrive."


Three area firefighters aiding in California

By Tess Noel Baker

Staff Writer

Three firefighters from Pagosa Springs traveled to California to lend a hand with the wildfires that threatened both homes and people last week.

Pagosa Fire Protection District Chief Warren Grams said Peter Dybing left to fight fires in California - although it is expected he may return soon. Dybing is a Type 1 EMS unit leader or a resource leader. Six firefighters and a Type 3 engine from Durango are also assisting in the west.

Grams said each year in March the district registers firefighters and equipment with the forest service resource center in case assistance is needed in other locations.

A Pagosa Ranger District representative said two of their full-time employees are currently fighting fires in California, Becca Smith, the district hydrologist, and Jackie Heesacker, an engine crew leader in the wildfire department.

Firefighter Molly Dorr and two seasonal forest service personnel also left the area recently to travel to Boulder for a couple days to fight fires there.


The changing face of asthma: Prevalent in boys, adult women

Almost two out of three children with severe asthma are boys. But women account for more than two out of three adults with severe asthma.

And no one really knows why.

Those are some of the most striking results of a cross-sectional study of severe asthma by researchers at National Jewish Medical and Research Center being published in the October issue of the journal Chest.

The research team, led by Joseph Spahn, M.D., also found that children with severe asthma had surprisingly good airflow in and out of their lungs, which could lead to misdiagnosis and undertreatment of seriously ill patients.

"Our findings highlight many of the significant differences between severe asthma in children and adults," said Spahn. "We hope they will spur further research that can lead to a better understanding and better treatment of this disease."

People with severe asthma, whose asthma remains uncontrolled in spite of high doses of medication, represent 5-10 percent of the estimated 20 million asthma patients in the United States. But they are important in terms of suffering, medical costs and difficulty finding effective treatments.

Spahn and his colleagues examined a variety of demographic and biological data for 275 patients with severe asthma who had been referred to National Jewish in Denver.

Physicians have suspected that severe asthma differs considerably from childhood to adulthood, and indeed that turned out to be the case.

The greatest difference was male-to-female ratio. Males accounted for 62 percent of the patients under 18, but 68 percent of severe asthma patients over 18 were female. A similar situation has been noted in mild and moderate asthma, but not in patients with severe asthma.

"There has been speculation that a woman's hormones or possibly a difference in the size of male and female lungs play a role in this changing pattern of asthma prevalence, but no one really know for sure why it occurs," said Spahn.

"If we could learn why," he added, "we might gain valuable insight that could help us better treat all our asthma patients."

Spahn and colleagues also found that children with severe asthma have deceptively good lung function. The amount of air a person can exhale in a second, known as forced expiratory volume in one second, is one of the primary measures used to diagnose and categorize a patient's asthma. Patients are deemed to have severe asthma when their FEV-1 is less than 60 percent of the average value for healthy people of their size and age.

The adults in Spahn's study had an average FEV-1 that was 57 percent of the healthy average. Children in the study, however, averaged FEV-1 of 74 percent of the healthy average, with many exceeding 90 percent.

Although other symptoms, such as medication use and history of asthma attacks, clearly put them in the severe category, the FEV-1 results alone would not have indicated that more than 40 percent had mild asthma and only 28 percent severe disease.

"The good news is that children have significantly less impaired lung function than do adults with asthma," Spahn said. "The bad news is that existing guidelines do not reflect this fact, and physicians may be mistakenly reassured by normal or near normal lung function readings in their pediatric patients. As a result, they may fail to appreciate the severity of their patients' asthma and undertreat them."

The study also indicates that patients whose asthma began in childhood rapidly lose lung function through adolescence then level off to a more moderate decline as they reach adulthood. Patients whose asthma began in adulthood, however, lose lung function almost immediately.

"Child-onset and adult-onset asthma may be two distinct forms of the disease, one that is slowly progressing over time and another that is associated with significant loss of lung function very shortly after onset," said Spahn.


Michigan man pleads guilty

to illegally killing bear in state

Sandy Schondelmayer, from Hastings, Mich., pleaded guilty Oct. 31 in U.S. District Court in Denver, to one count of violating the felony provisions of the Lacey Act, for the illegal interstate transportation, and purchase, of a black bear in violation of state and federal wildlife laws.

In a signed plea agreement with the government, Schondelmayer, 53, admitted to unlawfully killing a black bear in 2001, north of Craig, Colo., falsifying Colorado Division of Wildlife reporting records, and then transporting the bear back to Michigan.

The government's agreement with Schondelmayer requires him to pay $15,000 in fines and restitution and receive a lifetime suspension of his hunting privileges in Colorado and several other western states.

Any term of imprisonment will be decided at the time of sentencing by the Court. Schondelmayer also forfeited numerous big game mounts to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

In the plea agreement Schondelmayer also admitted to illegally killing in Colorado and Wyoming, and transporting in interstate commerce, two elk and one mule deer, between 1997 and 2000.

The investigation was initiated after a concerned citizen reported possible violations committed by Schondelmayer. The tip, which was provided through Colorado's Division of Wildlife Operation Game Thief Program, eventually resulted in the issuance and service of a federal search warrant at Schondelmayer's residence where numerous big game mounts were seized.

Subsequent interviews with Schondelmayer and other Michigan residents led to additional charges being issued in Arizona and Colorado.

Based on the evidence gathered during the investigation, Schondelmayer was previously convicted in Michigan State Court in January 2003, of unlawfully killing seven white-tailed deer and one black bear between 1999 and 2001.

In Michigan, Schondelmayer was ordered to pay fines and other costs totaling $10,950, sentenced to 60 days in jail, ordered to forfeit a scoped-sighted crossbow, and prohibited from hunting through 2006.

The interstate transportation and sale of wildlife taken in violation of any state laws is also a violation of the Lacey Act, a federal wildlife protection law. Schondelmayer pleaded guilty to one felony violation of the Lacey Act, which includes maximum penalties of five years imprisonment and a $250,000 fine.

No sentencing date has been set for Schondelmayer.

His prosecution is the result of a joint investigation by special agents of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and wildlife officers from the Colorado Division of Wildlife and the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. The case is being prosecuted by the U.S. Department of Justice's Environmental and Natural Resources Division and the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Colorado.

Operation Game Thief is a nonprofit organization that works with the Division to reward citizens who report wildlife crimes. Callers don't have to reveal their names, testify in court or sign a deposition. Rewards are paid if the information leads to the arrest of a poacher or a citation is issued. To report wildlife violations, call toll free (800)332-4255.


Grade school book fair set Nov. 10-20

Hats Off to Reading!

A Scholastic book fair with that theme is scheduled Nov. 10-20 at Pagosa Springs Elementary School.

Books will be available during regular school hours in Room 19 and they are not just for kids.

Books are for everyone and everyone is welcome.

A major program during the 10-day book fair will be the Family Event and Shopping Night 6-7:30 p.m. Nov. 18 in the school lunchroom.

Those attending should plan to wear a hat and enter to win a zany top hat. Salsa and chips and refreshments will be served and Bingo games with special prizes are planned.

Children must be accompanied by an adult to attend this event.

The Scholastic Book Fair works in partnership with the elementary school to bring a special selection of books to excite both parents and students about the joy of reading.

In addition to offering the newest books and educational materials, the fair raises funds that provide essential school resources and support school projects.

Volunteers are needed to work a variety of shifts each day. If you have time available and would like to help, call Ronnie Doctor, 264-6122 or Lisa Scott, 264-2730 for information or to sign up.


Legion Auxiliary will host Veterans Day dinner Nov. 9

By Richard Walter

Staff Writer

"Honoring All Who Served" is the theme chosen for a Nov. 9 Veterans Day dinner in Mullins-Nickerson American Legion Post 108.

The dinner is sponsored by Legion Auxiliary Unit 108 and is potluck, with the Auxiliary furnishing turkey, ham and soft drinks.

It is planned as a tribute to American veterans, but families of those now on active duty also will be honored.

The Veterans Day observance will begin with an 11 a.m. flag raising ceremony on the post grounds.

The 2 p.m. dinner will feature a POW/MIA empty chair service; a soldier's prayer, introduction of special guests, presentation of Blue Star banners to families of servicemen on duty now, and introduction of attending veterans.

"America did not want the war on terrorism ... just as America and Americans did not want any war in our history," an Auxiliary representative said. "Yet, here we are, two years since the images of the World Trade Center in New York, the Pentagon and the Pennsylvania countryside were seared into our memory."

The Auxiliary reminds Pagosans that as we go about our lives, young members of the armed forces are fighting the war on terrorism in countless ways.

"Just as veterans of earlier generations, today's men and women in uniform understand our precious freedoms come at a very high price," the Auxiliary member said.

The Blue Star Recognition Program is to recognize those families who have members in the Armed Forces of the United States. The Blue Star Banner lets all who see it know that someone from that home is defending our freedom.

A Gold Star Banner symbolizes an individual who was killed while serving.

American Legion Auxiliary 108 "is honored to recognize these families. We of the Legion have been there and know all too well of the sacrifices required of families with members in military service," she said.

Names of the local servicemen on active duty whose families will be cited are:

Connor Backus, Fred Beach, Christopher Boyle, Robert Cairns, Don Davis Jr., Sonny Davidson, Nathanael Day, Steven Denny.

Also, John Epassant, Ryan Flanagan, Charles Fogarty, Robert Gomez, Dusty Higgins, Joshua Hoffman, Daniel B. Howe II, James M. Hoyle, West Aaron Jackson.

Also, Sarah Joy, Brett Lewis Kahn, Charles L. Kelly, James Kirkham, Charles M. Knoll, Michael Long, Roger Lord, Miguel Martinez.

Also, Matt McGinnis, Mel Montoya, Robert C. Moomaw, Robert Murphy, Robert Nauman, Caleb Mellette, Trevor Peterson.

Also, April D. Pollack, Shane Prunty, Jacques Sarnow, Calin L. Smith, Duane L. Smith, Shawna Snarr, W. Ryan Spitler, Christopher Tautges, Christopher Wegner and Michael Young.

Everyone who plans to attend the dinner is asked to bring a dish to pass. For more information, call 264-5967.


Three feet of snow for Wolf Creek Ski area opening Friday

By Richard Walter

Staff Writer

It may have been due to El Niño or La Niña.

It makes no difference to Wolf Creek Ski Area officials where it originated, they are just thankful for the weekend storm which blanketed their sports facility with 36 inches of heavy wet snow at the summit.

As a result, the area will open for the season tomorrow, with four lifts - Nova, Dicky, Bonanza and Treasure - on line for the season's first skiers.

The storm, which poured up from the southwest and across Arizona and northwestern New Mexico, ripped into the Southern San Juans late Friday and all day Saturday, with the total continuing to mount through midday Monday.

Rosanne Haidorfer-Pitcher, said "It's just exciting to get a big storm like this. It isn't the earliest opening ever, but then we don't do any artificial snowmaking, either.

"This is the real deal, the kind of natural snow we're known for and that our customers look for," she added.

Ski area officials said their long-range forecasts indicate additional snowfall this weekend as a series of fronts fly in from the Southwest.

She said the opening will have about 50 percent of the ski area open to the public with 800 acres skiable.

"We'll open the rest as the base firms and the additional snowfall we expect builds up," she said.

Last year's opening date was Oct. 31 and the year before, the lifts were running Oct. 28.

Pitcher noted the moisture was in the form of rain below 9,600 feet, so the placement of the Wolf Creek Ski area at over 10,000 was perfect for the weekend storm.

And, she was happy for the lower areas in the region getting substantial rainfall. "Everyone knows how badly it was needed," she said.




Support veterans

Dear Editor:

On Sept. 11, 2001, everybody jumped on the band wagon and flags were flying everywhere; then along came Iraq.

We started seeing more flags and yellow ribbons. But as I look around today I see less and less flags and yellow ribbons, yet we still have servicemen dying in Iraq.

I fought for our flag and now I protect that flag. Let's not forget those who have done the same and are still doing so; let's not forget them.

This is an open letter to our mayor, elected officials and town board members. I come from a small town like Pagosa Springs, have lived here four years, and think it a beautiful place to live and raise a family.

The city I came from was into veterans' activities and we had a city involved in all our functions with wide participation in Veterans Day activities.

I have been asked by many of our town's citizens why we do not see our mayor or other town representatives at veterans' activities and "yet we show up rain or snow and we are not veterans." I say to them it is called "Patriotism."

The past four years I have yet to see a city official or representative at any of our veterans' functions - Memorial Day, Flag Day, Veterans Day, and now Sept. 11, or at any of the "Support Our Troops" rallies.

When Cpl. Charles Kelley came home from Iraq it was announced all over town and I was there to represent American Legion Post 108. I did not, however, see any representative of our town and it made me very upset. Being a Korean veteran, I know how it feels to come home knowing someone cares.

Let me tell you why I'm so upset. This town has much to be proud of in their men and women who have served and died for their country. You may not know this but there are families where all of the men served. Names like Archuleta, Gallegos, Martinez, Girardin, Lucero, Mills, Mullins, Nickerson and many, many more, families here since Pagosa Springs became a town and when time came to answer the call, were here for you.

As a member of Post 108, I sometimes stand at the pictures of the men and women who served in the armed forces from Archuleta County. Often one of the members would come up to me and say "that's my brother," "that's my uncle" or "father" or "brother." Everyone who has ever served from this town is on that wall and you are welcome to come and view it.

This is why I'm involved in a veterans' organization and why Veterans Day and Memorial Day mean so much to me.

In 1952 Alex and I joined the Marine Corps together. We had known each other since age five. He lived next door. We dated the same girls and on the day we left for boot camp Alex helped me jack up my 1941 Chevy so the tires would not go flat. We went to boot camp, and Korea, and came home together. On the day we were to be discharged, I told Alex to go home.

He said, "Not me, I'm staying in because war is on it's way."

In 1962, in the rice paddies of Vietnam, Alex was killed by a sniper's bullet, leaving a wife and two children.

I stay involved to keep his memory alive.

Mr. Mayor and town board members, can you please give a little this Veterans Day by honoring us with your presence at our activities honoring the veterans of your community?

Ernie Garcia

Sergeant at Arms

American Legion Post 108

Angel of mercy

Dear Editor:

Having recently learned of Mr. Ron Willett's retirement, I reminisced over a particularly harsh winter several years past. My parents were in the metro area to celebrate the legal holiday; I was housesitting during winter break.

The snow atop the roof froze quickly. Soon, slabs of ice slid onto the vehicles parked in the driveway. I toiled, but could not keep up with the driving snow.

To no avail, I telephoned a few men I knew for assistance. Around 9 o'clock one evening a faintly familiar figure approached me as I removed snow and ice; a disabled veteran who lives on the street behind ours. An angel of mercy, he shoveled the heavy white stuff beside me.

Every time I see Mr. Willett in his café au lait pickup, I readily recall his having come to my aid one hopeless, December night.

Arlene Marcus

Capote update

Dear Editor:

I have just read the piece you published in the Pagosa SUN concerning Lake Capote. I would like to take this opportunity to correct some misconceptions in the report.

You indicate the problems began with Stollsteimer eroding the dam. This is not entirely correct. That was only one of the deficiencies identified by the Bureau of Reclamation and the Bureau of Indian Affairs. The problems included an inadequate spillway, leakage from the dam itself (probably from the time the dam was originally erected), and an inoperable outlet works. The existing outlet works has probably not been functional for over 20 years.

The BIA and BOR do not order the Tribe to rebuild the dam, they inform the Tribe of the deficiencies and basically say, "if the dam is not repaired and it fails ... it's your liability."

Funding for construction was not approved until FY2003. The BIA's fiscal year is Oct. 1- Sept. 30. The Tribe was allocated O&M funds as well as design funding in the past but did not have construction funding until FY2003.

The correct terminology for the "enormous storm" you refer to is the PMF (Possible Maximum Flood). The emergency spillway is a relief for the 100-year flood up to the design flood, not the PMF. The design takes into consideration what the PMF might be. Since that is always a huge amount of water a study, called an IDA (Incremental Damage Assessment) is done to determine at what cfs (cubic feet per second) all of the damage that can be done downstream of the dam has already occurred. The dam is then designed to contain only that flood that is within the limits of the IDA study. If dams were built to contain the PMF then we would see dams that are so large they wouldn't be economically feasible. The article seems to indicate that we are trying to contain the entire PMF, which is not true.

The improvements to the recreation areas has occurred on the east side of Lake Capote ... to date, there is no plan to improve the actual campground itself, which is west of the lake.

I don't want the public to be misled as to the status of the lake.

Robert L. Piccoli

Director, Construction

and Project Management

Southern Ute Indian Tribe

Honor earned

Dear Editor:

Terrorism has reared its ugly head consistently for the past 20 years. We experienced it graphically on Sept. 11, 2001. We see its carnage continue throughout the world on a daily basis.

The United States has set a powerful agenda to find, fix and eradicate terrorist threats throughout the world before the terrorists can strike. The task is daunting. The collective will must not falter.

But we should take heed, as it appears that the Lebanon of 1983, when 241 Marines were slaughtered in a barracks near Beirut by a truck bomb, bears striking similarities to the present day conflict in Iraq.

This morning, as I watched 20 seriously wounded American patriots carried off medical evacuation aircraft in Germany for treatment after the tragic helicopter crash in Iraq, which also killed 16, I had to ask myself, as Veterans Day approaches: Are all who love freedom underscoring the quality, vitality and importance of these superb troops whose lives were unexpectedly taken by a terrorist surface-to-air missile?

When those 16 who gave their lives are returned to the land they loved and all of us are looking down the line of flag-draped caskets, will we also ask one question: Lord, where do we get such men and women?

As I reflect back on a naval career that spanned 33 years, my most reverent prayer is that God will never let me forget those days that I was privileged to sail and fly with heroes, led by men of honor.

Those gallant warriors of all branches of our armed services who were ready to face our country's enemies any time and any place should be honored this Veterans Day - they've earned it.

Remember their many sacrifices American, and thank 'em.

Jim Sawicki

Power politics

Dear Editor:

I am elated by the public outpouring of support I have received following the article in last week's SUN. Finally, folks are recognizing what is gong on here - pure power politics.

The report in question was simply a small part of "work in progress." I was one of the folks interviewed for the report and much of the information came from me as I am the one member of the health district board with a long history with EMS.

Our manager was well aware of the many problems; however, her attempts to change had constantly been questioned by some of our "embedded" EMS employees' reluctance to change and, I might add, she received no support from the former physician advisor.

This report was intended to lend strength to her efforts - she already knew what was in the report as it was provided by all who participated. Before the written report was received, our executive director had begun to make necessary changes which resulted in some resignations and those positions have been filled by professionals from other places who have worked in successful systems.

So, folks, we are not through, the work is still in progress. But we are on a journey to provide Pagosa Country with the enhanced medical care you deserve.

Thanks to all for your understanding and support. Your USJHD board and management are committed to quality health care for you. The political activity, while disruptive, will not halt our efforts.

Patty Tillerson


Community News

Senior News


Several special talks on week's schedule

By Laura Bedard

SUN Columnist

Glen Raby is back again with another talk about volcanoes. His talk last month was well attended and very popular.

So, he's coming back and bringing some cool rocks and more pictures and information.

Be sure to attend this special talk at 12:45 p.m. Friday.

We had a great Halloween party Oct. 31. Betty Hayes won first place for her costume as a clown and she was so well made up, no one knew who she was. Elaine Nossaman won a prize for being The Great Pumpkin, and Drew Sewell's parents from Oklahoma won prizes as well. (Notice our center draws people from quite a distance.)

We do have fun at lunch, even when we don't have a party. Mike Felts from the post office has lunch with us so much, he was deemed Honorary Senior of the Week. He likes to play Scrabble for Blood at lunch and we have a table of Bills (Bill Kimble and Bill Miller to name a couple) that we have to keep an eye on. People are meeting to start different card games, like pinochle at 1 p.m., so it's nice to have lunch here every once awhile and see what is going on.

Senior security is a big issue these days and there are more seniors in Archuleta County every year, so Musetta wants to be sure everyone knows how to give to charities, plan for increased dependency, how to manage health and medical bills and how to make wise investment decisions.

She has a video and will give a short talk and answer questions at 12:45 p.m. Nov. 10. This is important information to have, so come in and learn how to deal with some of life's decisions.

We have another interesting talk planned at 12:45 p.m. Nov. 12 featuring Bill Nobles, and entitled "What Color is Your Personality?"

Bill has a short quiz that helps you acquire a deeper understanding of yourself and others. You will discover valuable insights that have innumerable applications in work, family and personal relationships. These insights lead to clearer perceptions and greater appreciation of the gifts we offer each other on the journey of life. Whew! Besides all that, it should be fun.

Don't forget our trip to Durango Nov., 13. We leave at about 8 a.m. and the suggested donation is $10. Sign up now in the lounge.

George Golightly wants to know "Do you remember when we traveled along the highway and could hardly wait to see the next Burma Shave sign? Remember the cute little sayings on the signs? 'Around the corner ... Lickety split ... beautiful car wasn't it? Burma Shave.'

"'Following too close was a lot of bunk 'til they pulled him from someone's trunk Burma Shave.'

"'Don't stick your elbow out too far it might go home in another car. Burma Shave.'

"They made car trips even more enjoyable. Do you remember?"


Friday - Qi Gong, 10 a.m.; Medicare counseling, 11; veterans' benefits with Andy Fautheree, 11; and Volcanoes with Glen Raby 12:45 p.m.

Nov. 10 - Senior Security with Musetta, 12:45 p.m; bridge for fun 1 p.m.

Nov. 11 - Center closed for Veterans' Day

Nov. 12 - beginning computer class 10:30 a.m.; "What Color is Your Personality?" with Bill Nobles, 12:45 p.m.

Nov. 13 - Durango trip - leave 8 a.m.


Friday - Roast beef with gravy, mashed potatoes, green beans, roll and plums

Nov. 10 - Enchilada casserole, tossed salad, corn chips and peaches

Nov. 11 - Center closed

Nov. 12 - Spaghetti with meat sauce, vegetable salad, fruit cup and garlic roll


Chamber News

First snows prompt start of

out of state ad campaigns

By Sally Hameister

Yahoo and hallelujah - lest you haven't gotten the word, Wolf Creek Ski Area opens Friday morning. What good, no, great news for all of us to have such an early opener.

Jeff Greer was good enough to give me a heads up this morning with the good news, and I promptly called our friends at KOB-TV in Albuquerque. Our TV ads which emanate all over the state of New Mexico began running on Wednesday morning and will run for a week letting all of our neighbors to the south know that we are open for business.

New Mexico is a fabulous market for us because those folks can drive to us with no muss and no fuss. A recent CTO marketing survey indicated that travelers are far more likely to visit areas within a four to five hour drive radius, and we certainly fill the bill with Pagosa and the ski area. The week promises more of the white stuff, so let's hear it for a long and successful winter season for all of us.

Chamber ads

The newly-formed Chamber marketing committee made up of a few of our stellar directors and yours truly has met a couple of times to look at new and different ways of getting the word out about Pagosa to new and different audiences.

Because of the aforementioned CTO survey, we are going to do some heavier marketing on the Front Range and in the Colorado Springs area in addition to our continued New Mexico and Texas efforts. The Colorado AAA puts out the largest state periodic magazine, EnCompass, with a readership of almost 500,000, and we will be advertising with them to capture more of our four-five hour radius travelers. We are also looking into Arizona marketing opportunities.

Along those same lines, we invite you to come and see our new bulletin board in the Visitor Center which features some of our current ads placed in different periodicals, magazines, etc. The marketing committee decided that it would be a wonderful idea to let you all see what we are doing with Chamber marketing dollars, so please come and check it out.

I'm sure the board will never be completely inclusive, but it will give you some idea about what we do here when we aren't languishing in front of the TV eating bonbons and watching Oprah and game shows.

PSAC student reception

Please plan to join the arts council folks 5-7 tonight at the gallery in Town Park as they host a special exhibit featuring the work of local student artists in grades five through eight.

Students of art instructor Donna Wagle have produced some unique artwork including shaded animals by both fifth- and sixth-graders as well as cartoon posters, Egyptian scratch art and Egyptian mummies. Eighth-grade students have created an animal series including shaded animals, colored animals, pen and ink and clay sculpture. The seventh- graders have produced cardboard cutouts of cartoons, surrealistic drawings using one point perspective and Aboriginal paintings with a modern twist.

Fifth- through eighth-grade art will be on display at the gallery through Nov. 18, Tuesday through Friday from 10-5. They do close for lunch from 1-2 on those days.

Susie sings gospel

On Friday and Saturday evenings, Susie Ewing and accompanist, Rada Neal, will appear at the Community United Methodist Church at 7:30 p.m. with some serious gospel music. Susie has a voice that especially lends itself to gospel tunes, and I assure you that it will be a memorable evening.

The Quodlibet Handbell Choir will perform a number or two, so you can count on quite the performance arts night. Also, refreshments will be available when the doors open at 6:45 both evenings.

Tickets for "Susie Sings Gospel" are available at WolfTracks Bookstore and Coffee Company and the Chamber of Commerce for $10 in advance and $12 at the door. Hope to see everyone there.

Reason No. 1

From time to time, I like to remind folks of the many advantages and benefits of Chamber membership, and this is one of those times. SunDowners seemed like a good place to begin, so here we go.

If you are one of the few laboring under the false assumption that Chamber SunDowners are just "monthly parties," allow me to enlighten you as to the networking possibilities available to you at these little treasures.

The basic premise for SunDowners has always been to provide the host business the opportunity to share with the community where they are and what they do in a relaxed, social setting. That business provides the food, and the Chamber creates and sends the invitations, greets guests and provides all the drinks for the evening. It continues to be a lovely marriage.

Clearly, if you want to socialize with friends, the "fun night out" choice is one that many enjoy each and every month and wouldn't dream of missing the event. However, SunDowners offer tremendous opportunities for networking, learning and reaching out to your colleagues in the business community and that fact should never be overlooked.

At last month's SunDowner, for instance, one attendant ran up to me and announced he had just found a new associate for his ever-growing business. In the last two weeks, the director of one of our biggest nonprofit organizations told me that she had found all her volunteers at SunDowners. Yet another devotee shared that 75 percent of his current clients are a result of SunDowners.

Marcel and Bev Theberge are relatively new members of our Chamber and are the associate publishers of TRAVELHOST Magazine of the Four Corners. They claim "SunDowners have introduced us to many new friends and have provided us with networking opportunities that would otherwise have taken years to acquire!"

Frankly, even if these were strictly social events, I would applaud and support them as a vehicle for getting together with folks and enjoying. However, never minimize the business advantages and opportunities offered each month. Since we're on the subject, don't forget the November and December SunDowners are held a week earlier than normal because of the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays.

This month, Pagosa Central Reservations will host Nov. 19, and Galles Properties will host the Dec. 17 event.

Free clothing

This Saturday is Free Clothing Day at St. Patrick's Episcopal Church on South Pagosa Boulevard. Please feel free to stop by between the hours of 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. to take advantage of this lovely opportunity. If you would like to donate clothing of volunteer your services, contact Charlotte Jones at 264-5324.

Newsletter insert

We hope that you are giving some thought to your newsletter insert for December because our quarterly Chamber Communiqué is just around the corner. This is the perfect time to send your holiday greeting, announce holiday specials, herald the opening of your new business or just reinforce the consistent bargains to be found at your place. Just bring us 750 copies of your insert and a check for $40, and we'll take it from there. This is the prima marketing bargain of the decade, and we encourage you to take advantage of it.

Doug has taken a hard line on the deadline of Nov. 26 because of the holiday, and since Doug is a pretty big guy, I just wouldn't mess with it. He's also an awfully nice guy, so feel free to call him with questions at 264-2360.

Business counseling

A very popular guy these days is Joe Keck, director of the Small Business Development Center at Ft. Lewis College, who offers us free business counseling once a month at the Visitor Center. Joe is frequently completely booked for the day, so please give us a call at 264-2360 to book an appointment with him on Thursday, Nov. 20. Joe can help you with any and all questions pertaining to business in the Four Corners, and there is absolutely no charge for his considerable expertise.

Lord of the Springs

The Pagosa Pretenders Family Theatre in association with Artstream Cultural Resources invites you to audition for their upcoming original play, "Lord of the Springs." They are looking for actors, musicians and dancers, both children and adults, to participate in this project. The fabulous thing about this is that everyone who auditions is guaranteed a part - that certainly takes the stress out of auditioning, doesn't it? The audition will consist of a simple improvisational game and families are particularly encouraged to participate. The play will be presented Feb. 20, 21, 27 and 28 in the high school auditorium.

For information, please contact Mark Brown at 731-3546 or Bill Hudson at 264.2491.

Holiday fun

The holidays are just around the corner, so please mark your calendars so you won't miss a single event during an always particularly festive season in Pagosa.

The annual Christmas in Pagosa which officially kicks off the holidays locally will take place Dec. 6, with Santa and Mrs. Claus presiding at the Visitor Center from 3-5:30 p.m. with candy canes for all the good little boys and girls. The Mountain Harmony Ladies Chorus will grace us with their beautiful voices and lead our caroling, and at dusk, Santa will perform his magic and light up the Visitor Center. Delicious Christmas cookies and hot spiced cider will be served throughout the event, and we will have an official photographer to capture those precious moments with Santa for posterity.

The following Friday, the annual Parade of Lights will take place downtown beginning at 6 p.m. In the spirit of the season, this year there will be no entry fee - none at all - but the prize money will still be awarded for the Best and Brightest floats in the business, family and organization categories. More on this later, but just wanted to make sure your calendars were filled in with the proper dates.

CUMC annual bazaar

From Nov. 17-24 you will have the opportunity to order a gorgeous fresh wreath or table arrangement from the spunky little Christmas elves at the Methodist Church. As many of you know, the Russ Hill Bazaar is a time-honored Pagosa tradition carried out by 40 to 50 volunteers who put in hours and hours to benefit the church and the local community.

Last year these generous souls created over 750 wreaths and 175 table arrangements. You must place your orders by Nov. 24, and the bazaar will end on December 5. The wreaths make beautiful gifts to send from the great state of Colorado and range in price from $19 to $27. Table arrangements begin at $15. Get your order in early so you won't miss out.


Three new businesses join us this week along with four renewals so allow us to introduce these good folks.

A member of a familiar Pagosa family joins us and we couldn't be more pleased to welcome Lora Laydon who brings us Pagosa Skin Therapy located at 480 San Juan St. Yep, Lora will be sharing space with husband, Jeff, at Pagosa Photography, so you can expect to have a perfectly wonderful time when you visit either or both.

Lora is a certified cosmetician and esthetician offering rejuvenating and healing skin treatments. Give Lora a call at 364-FACE (3223) to learn more about Pagosa Skin Therapy.

We next welcome Kaye and Larry Kerr who brings us Kerr's Heating and Refrigeration with offices located in their home. Larry came into the Chamber recently to buy local maps, and of course I asked why in the world he wasn't a Chamber member. Poor guy never had a chance and was such a good sport that he came back in an hour or two to join up. Heavy-handed recruiting pays off every now and then, I suppose, especially with someone so good-humored.

Kerr's specializes in heating, refrigeration and appliance sales and service. He is a warranty-authorized service agent for Amana, Lennox, Coleman, Intertherm, GE and White Westinghouse. His normal business hours are Monday through Friday 8 a.m.-5 p.m., but, and get this, he will handle your emergencies any time. Wow, that's not always an option. Please give Larry a call at 731-4230 to learn more.

Joseph Nelson is our third new member this week and brings us The Payroll Department, Inc. in Durango. These folks offer payroll and payroll tax processing for all types of businesses and nonprofit organizations ranging from one employee to many. They will also handle direct deposits and time tracking for you. Please give them a call at 259-6960 for more information about The Payroll Department.

Our renewals this week include Veronica (Ronny) Doctor with Alpenglow Guest Cabins; Connie Prunty with CenturyTel; Erica DeVoti with Pony Express Brochure Delivery and Kerry Dermody with the Echo Canyon Ranch Association. Our thanks to one and all.


Library News

Brisk bazaar sales bring in over $5,000

The Civic Club Bazaar: Another successful happening is over for another year.

We love being able to use the Pagosa Springs Community Center facilities. We thank everyone who participated in any way. We appreciate all of the lovely donated raffle items; the hard work of all the Civic Club ladies and their husbands.

A special thanks to the Knights of Columbus and their volunteers who helped set up the booths and move the partitions; to the kitchen crew and the folks who did the bake sale. This is truly a community event.

There is so much work that goes into the bazaar behind the scenes. Barb Draper and Margaret Wilson start very early in the year on their parts - we couldn't do it without them.

Sales were brisk, the crowds continuous. The Civic Club reports over $5,000 came in from all of the various categories. Our building fund will profit handsomely.

Senior resource guides

The state sent us many of the new Resource Guidebooks available for free distribution to seniors. The guidebook contains current information on Medicare, Medicaid, long-term care insurance, HMOs, Medicare supplements, prescription drugs, nursing homes, assisted living, housing, home health care, and hospice.

In addition, the guidebook contains information on advance directives and a document locator. The guidebook is quite comprehensive and full of important information for anyone considered a Colorado senior. It is most complete and has some special explanations for people about the serious ramifications of receiving financial support.

There is a Colorado Gerontological Society to help with senior answers and services. We have their contact information at the desk.

Air quality control

The 2002-2003 state report is now available. According to the report, Colorado air is better than most states. The report may be checked out.

New books

"The Complete Idiot's Guide to Breaking Bad Habits," by Suzanne LeVert and Gary McClain has quite a list of habits that probably we could all use help in dropping.

They ask, " Is your life interfering with your habit?" We hate the title but there are actually some very good suggestions and advice on many things, not just smoking, dieting and giving up alcohol. And there is even advice on what to do when other people's habits drive you crazy


Thanks to La Plata Electric and Colorado Country Life magazine for donating several new books about our area's flora and fauna. The company receives books through a book review program and donates them to rural libraries across Colorado. It was our turn. We'll review them later.

Thanks to Roger and Sandy Wickham for "Triumph Over Grief," by Joyce Smith Williams. Thanks for materials from Bob and Carole Howard, Deb Hornbacher, Renee Gelton or Yelton, Misty Wilfer and Dick Hillyer.

Veteran's Corner

Pay tribute to our veterans for their service to America

A number of Veterans Day events are scheduled in and around Archuleta County starting Nov. 9.

This is the time to salute all of our veterans and pay tribute to those who have served, and those who are serving in our military, defending America's freedom.

Whether you agree or disagree with current politics and the reasons for any war America has engaged in, one thing we can all agree on is to support our troops in the present conflict, and the veterans who have served in the conflicts of America's past.

Show your support

One way to show that support and pay tribute to our men and women who wear America's military uniforms is to attend some of the Veterans Day ceremonies.

The American Legion will kickoff Veterans Day Sunday in front of the American Legion Post 108 building next to the town park. Events will get underway with a flag-raising ceremony at 11 a.m.

Later in the day, at 2 p.m., there will be additional activities at the American Legion.

A POW/MIA empty chair service will be held followed by a "soldiers' prayer," introduction of guests and veterans, and presentation of Blue Star and Gold Star Banners. Concluding the activities will be a potluck dinner hosted by the American Legion Auxiliary. Everyone is invited to bring a dish and join in the dinner.

Banner presentation

This year a Gold Star Banner will be given to Dora Manzanares in memory of Jose A. Manzanares, and to Ronald Cairns in memory of Robert Cairns. Both were killed in action in Vietnam. This is the first time the banners have been available for presentation.

A Blue Star Banner will be presented to Col. James Hoffman in memory of Kylan Hoffman, who was killed in combat earlier this year in the war in Iraq.

According to the Ron Willett, unofficial spokesman and longtime member of the Mullins-Nickerson American Legion Post 108, the Blue Star Recognition Program is to recognize those families who have members in the Armed Forces of the United States. The Blue Star Banner lets all who see it know that someone from that home is defending our freedom. A Gold Star Banner symbolizes an individual who was killed while serving in the military in past conflicts.

Veterans Day breakfast

On Nov. 11, Scott White's eighth-grade American History junior high school class will host its third annual breakfast to honor veterans. The event will be held in the Pagosa Springs Community Center 8-11:30 a.m. All veterans are invited to be the guests of these students.

The junior high choir and band will present appropriate music to honor all the veterans of our area. These young folks ask only for the opportunity to express their honor and appreciation to the veterans.

I know from experience these youngsters love to serve the meal, refill the coffee cups, and listen to the stories and experiences of veterans.

Also on Tuesday, winners of the Reuben Marquez Memorial Patriotism Writing Contest will be announced at the American Legion building. Cash prizes of $75, $50 and $25 will be awarded to first-, second- and third-place winners. This event will begin at 11 a.m. with the reading of the winning essays and presentation of the prize money.

Boy Scout flag course

Wrapping up Veterans Day events this year the American Legion will conduct an American Flag course for local Boy Scouts. This will be held at 6 p.m. in Community United Methodist Church in Pagosa Springs. The Boy Scouts will learn the meaning of the flag, how to fold the flag and the proper way to display the flag. Certificates will be given to each Boy Scout upon completion of the course that evening.

Again, according to Willett, there are 58 local people, or people who have families in this area, currently serving in the military. One of the 58, Kylan Hoffman was killed in action in Iraq earlier this year. I believe he is the first fatal casualty of this conflict from this area.

For information on these and other veterans benefits call or stop by the Veterans Service Office located on the lower floor of the county courthouse. The office number is 264-8375, the fax number is 264-8376, and e-mail is The office is open 8 a.m.-4 p.m., Monday through Thursday, 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.



Julie Eyre and John Constan were married Sept. 29, 2003, at Williams Creek Reservoir. Parents of the bride are Glen and Linda Eyre of Pagosa Springs. Parents of the groom are Angelo and Ann Constan from Cape Coral, Fla.. The couple is residing in Palisade, Colo.



It's a Wonderful Life

Talented local cast makes headway in Christmas production

By Tess Noel Baker

Staff Writer

With roles available for over 30 people, Dale Morris, director of this year's Music Boosters Christmas production, "A Wonderful Life," was worried about finding enough cast members to make it work.

As it turned out, she had the opposite problem.

Over 70 people turned out for the two days of auditions. "We didn't know if we'd get enough and then ended up cutting over 20 folks," she said. The result is a cast of talented people - professional actors and actresses as well as some brand new to the stage - who mesh well together.

The youngest is age 7. The oldest is retired. "The blend just works," Morris said.

Leading off the group are John and Oteka Bernard, a professional acting duo who have lived in Pagosa Springs for two years with their two sons, ages 2 and 3. They will play George Bailey and his wife-to-be, Mary Hatch.

In the storyline, Bailey is a hometown boy who overcomes the bully to give something back to the community. Then, a ne'er-do-well relative casts a shadow over his good name, sending Bailey into a downward spiral. It takes the help of a couple of well-meaning angels to pull him up out of the pickle and show him the real meaning of his life.

Bernard said the production will be the first time he and his wife have had the chance to work together in the same scenes In seven years, they have twice been members of the same cast, but never in roles that truly interacted. Here, they have a chance to communicate on stage together, and both are enjoying the opportunity.

"I love it," Oteka said.

"I've read three versions of this musical," John said. "This is definitely the most fun."

At first, Oteka said, it was supposed to be John's turn in the spotlight. After all, someone must stay home with the boys, and practices are anywhere from two to four nights a week.

"He came home from tryouts and I was sitting there saying, 'I want to do this, I want to do this,'" she said. It was family friend Emily Neder to the rescue. She volunteered to watch the boys, and Oteka showed up at auditions the next day.

"They thought I was bringing someone a message," she said. Since then, they've been enjoying the opportunity to work together on stage as well as off.

"In the kind of relationship you have on stage," John said, "You have to be close. In most cases, you have to cultivate that. This gives us an opportunity to find that faster."

"You don't have to get over getting to know each other," Oteka added.

Besides that, it's easier to practice. "Cleaning house, you can run lines," she said. Both are looking forward to putting months of hard work to the test on opening night when the curtain will open on a production just a little bigger in scope than what's been tried before.

"This is the most people and the most musical numbers in an individual show to have been done here," Morris said. "We realized that when we started, but about a week ago we looked at each other and said, 'Oh my gosh, this is going to be really big.'"

They've been practicing since the end of September, moving steadily through the script. Learning lines. Singing. Blocking. Staging. Developing characters. Forty-five people in the cast. Thirteen more in the orchestra.

"One of our goals was to have everything taught, blocked, danced and sung by Nov. 1," she told the cast at the start of practice Monday. "We came very close." On Monday, they had just the finale to finish blocking, a task completed in just a few minutes.

"Give yourselves a hand," Morris said.

With a month to go before opening night, they will move into a "working phase," next. Starting this week, the cast will run through the first 16 pages of the script, Act. 1, "dancing, blocking, feeling it, experimenting with it, becoming stronger in our singing," Morris said. "This becomes the first time they're putting the singing and dancing together." Next week, they will follow up with the same treatment of Act 2.

"If anything feels funky this is the time to ask the questions," she said. No one raised a hand, so she moved ahead. As promised, blocking the finale took about 10 minutes. From there, everyone scattered to different parts of the stage, coming back together in a few minutes around the piano.

Voice warm-up began, moving smoothly into practice requests from the cast. Meanwhile, Morris worked on the set, moving things around for the opening. Michael DeWinter brought in a new rack of costumes - this show will require 264 in all.

"Unless she gives me more," DeWinter said with a smile.

Off to another side Shawna Bolt took roll.

"She's developed a production assistant role and without that this would be impossible," Morris said of Bolt who sees to all the details that otherwise might be forgotten. Other cast members volunteered to help with lights. Some with sound. They are apprenticing with the pros. Learning the ropes. Taking on the challenge by diving in head first.

Together, they are determined to pull it off. "Our goal has been to have fun, to make this a great experience for everyone. If we come out with a really good show in the end, that's a bonus," Morris said.

It is, after all, her big Pagosa debut. She directed other productions before moving to Archuleta County. Musical director, Melinda Baum, is also making her first foray into the top seat after a long time as a assistant.

"She's fabulous," Morris said. "She's so open to new and different kinds of things."

By working together, everyone seems to have kept the stress level pretty low. Or maybe those sneaky angels are lending a helping hand in more than one way.

Performances of "A Wonderful Life" will take place at the Pagosa Springs High School Auditorium on the evenings of Dec. 4, 5, and 6 at 7:30 p.m., with a Sunday matinee on Dec. 7. Tickets are priced at $12 for adults, $10 for seniors (60 and over), and $6 for students and children. Reserved seat tickets are available at The Plaid Pony, 731-5262.


Pagosa's Past

Cattlemen were likely first settlers in the county

John M. Motter

PREVIEW Columnist

The first permanent settlers in the San Juan Basin were probably cattlemen.

No one has written a good summary detailing the history of the cattle business in this part of the state. In general, the stories we hear parallel classic cattle history throughout the West.

Large companies, some of them English-owned, led the way in the days before fences. We know some of these large companies such as the Carlisle outfit, headquartered near Monticello, Utah. We don't know if cattle were run near Pagosa Springs in those early days.

Of one early cattleman, we know quite a bit. H.W. Cox left Stephenville, Texas, in 1872, picked up the Pecos Trail and kept moving until reaching Vermejo, near Trinidad, Colorado. In 1876, Cox came over to the San Juan Basin. He found a virgin land of tall, waving grass which reached the stirrups of his saddle. Liking the country, he decided to move west.

In 1877, with the oldest of his sons and son-in-law Alf Graves (direct descendants of Graves still live in Pagosa Springs), Cox trailed 4,500 head of cattle and 100 horses from Trinidad over two mountain ranges to reach the San Juan Basin.

He drove the first wagon down the Animas hauling 6,000 pounds of provisions with seven yoke of oxen. The route they followed from Trinidad to the Animas is not identified.

The following summer, they returned to Trinidad for their families. Included in the family caravan which crossed La Veta Pass were Mrs. Cox and Mrs. Graves with her twins and baby John. The Will McCoy family joined the entourage on La Veta Pass.

Each family came in a covered wagon with food for a year, simple household equipment, a few farm implements, seeds, chickens, and a pair of hogs.

After crossing La Veta Pass, they followed the Cumbres Pass route over the San Juan Mountains. On steep slopes, they tied large trees to the rear of the wagons to serve as brakes. At certain points, they had to hold the upper side of wagons to keep them from tipping over. Saddle horses and ropes were used to cross washes.

The Animas River was at flood stage when they reached the upper crossing near Bondad during June. By connecting Cumbres Pass with the Bondad crossing, it seems safe to assume that from Cumbres they went north through Pagosa Springs, then west to Animas City before going south to Bondad.

In any case and faced with the flooded stream, they camped on its bank while members of the party returned to Animas City (located in the north part of what is now Durango), bought lumber, and made a skiff. They waterproofed their new vessel with rags and hot piñon gum.

This homemade ferry safely conveyed the people and their goods across the river. The wagons were then tied to the running gear and the horses swam across.

After traveling down the mesa to Twin Crossing, they ferried across the people and supplies.

They were met by men who took them on to Cedar Hill. The next day they returned and built the first wagon road between Twin Crossing and Cedar Hill and brought the wagons down.

Cox located on the south bank of the Animas, Graves on the north bank north of present day Aztec. For years they used the skiff to cross the river between their homes during flood season.

It should be noted that the O'Neal and Arnold families and Henry Gordon also drove cattle from Texas to the Cedar Hill area, probably as early as 1877. These families ended up in Pagosa Springs and have descendants still living in Pagosa Springs.

There may have been others who drove cattle from Texas to northwest New Mexico, Southwest Colorado, and southeast Utah during these same years.

Not all of the cattle driven in during these early years were longhorns, although those brought in from Texas undoubtedly were.

During the settlement of Oregon, cattle were driven from the eastern states to Oregon. By the time of the Pike's Peak Gold Rush, 1859, or shortly after, some of these cattle were driven from Oregon eastward to the Rocky Mountains and some of them reached the San Juan Basin.

In the spring of 1877, before the Cox, Graves, and McCoy families arrived, a caravan of 30 horses and three wagons had crossed the mountains.

It is said the first white woman to enter San Juan County, N.M., was in this party. She was Mrs. R.E. Ferguson with sons George and Scott. Also in the party were James Ferguson, Mr. Crouch for whom Crouch Mesa is named, Harrison Howe, uncle of Dean and Sherman Howe, and Frank, Arthur and Joe Hays.

Information for the above column was taken from "Pioneers of the San Juan Country, Volume IV."



Get ready, winter is here

Through late October, it seemed the clock had turned back,

weatherwise, and Pagosa Country was enjoying summer-like

conditions. Daytime temperatures were unseasonably high; there was no significant precipitation, no storms to signal a change of season.

All that ended last week. Mother Nature made it clear summer is over; winter is on the horizon. Clouds rolled in from the southwest, bringing moisture. The temperatures dipped.

For the first time this fall, major snow fell on the peaks - not the dusting of early autumn that frosts the tops of mountains then melts away. This snow is here to stay. There is enough on the ground in the high country to cause outdoor winter sport enthusiasts to dust off skis and snowshoes and think about heading soon to cross country ski terrain or the alpine slopes.

Alpine skiers got a boost this week as Wolf Creek Ski Area announced snow at least three feet deep on the slopes and an opening date of Nov. 7. The announcement heralds good news for a variety of other businesses in the area; an opening date this time of year cements many holiday reservations and allows local lodging establishments, restaurants and retailers to imagine a profitable winter.

With the snow, we know the holiday seasons are just ahead. Thanksgiving is right around the corner and the December holidays are looming, with a variety of local events preceding the end-of-month observances and the new year. It is a busy time.

The certainty that winter is on the way should lead us to remember some important facts, to prepare for winter driving and winter emergencies.

We have not had a hard winter here for many years. Folks who moved to this part of the world in the last 10 years or so have not experienced the winter conditions once regarded as normal in the southern San Juans. Whether this will be the year those conditions prevail remains to be seen, but it does no harm to be ready.

To be dressed for winter, warm and dry, is a given. Hypothermia is a danger and getting wet is a hazard.

In the past, power outages were not unusual, inaccessible roadways were common. Homes should be stocked with at least three days provisions and, if the ability to heat a home is constrained, residents should be able to turn off water to the home to prevent pipes from freezing. Candles, butane or propane cook stoves and heaters are valuable accessories. Homes with wood stoves should have a ready supply of wood.

Vehicles should be prepared prior to winter, with antifreeze refreshed, the car or truck equipped with snow tires and chains, an emergency kit, a shovel, a pack of sand or kitty litter for traction.

For those unfamiliar with winter driving safety, one bit of advice: If you don't need to be on the road, stay at home. Reduced speeds, increased distance between vehicles, safe braking procedures should be practiced, knowledge of techniques to control a slide kept in mind. Statistically, the local school bus system has proven the safest means of transporting youngsters to school. For parents who still believe they are a better winter driver than the bus driver, and their vehicle is safer than a bus, a modified schedule (leaving home much earlier on snow days) helps relieve congestion on U.S. 160, at the elementary school and downtown, caused by too many cars on a treacherous road surface.

Winter, when it arrives full blown, is a wonderful time of year in Pagosa Country. Be sensible, be safe and we can all enjoy it.

Karl Isberg

Pacing Pagosa

Beware Internet's scam traps

By Richard Walter

The Internet and its attendant computer links to almost everywhere in the world in an instant is a major development of our time.

It also, as one Pagosan will attest, can be an easy place for the unwary to be scammed.

No matter what you want to buy - or sell - there's a Web site specializing in your particular field of interest.

In the local man's case, it was classic cars. He had one he wanted to sell and listed it on a Web site at $13,500.

He got a bite rather quickly with one qualification. The buyer, an agent for another interested party, offered $13,400.

Our local agreed and told the broker where to send his check.

When it arrived, he took it to his bank and soon received an e-mail from the broker asking him to send, by Western Union, an amount in excess of $4,000 as his broker's fee in the sale.

Picture his predicament for a moment.

He has a check for which he must await clearance by his bank before the funds are his.

The broker is asking for hard cash to be forwarded to him immediately to seal the deal.

Then came the bad news. You guessed it. The check bounced.

Luckily, the Pagosan had not sent the cash requested or he would have been out that amount, but would have had his classic car - and a bouncing check - on hand.

He was smart enough to keep a paper trail of all his transactions with the Web site, the broker, the bank, and with law enforcement agencies.

He still has his classic car, too.

And he'd still like to sell it. But he'll go about it in the old-fashioned way, he said. Advertise locally and hope for the best.

Still, he's unhappy with the lack of security the unsuspecting Web user might encounter, the lack of means to immediately assess whether the potential buyer's agent was a legitimate business man or just a charlatan of the ethernet.

His experience should serve as a warning to everyone who considers using the computer for similar transactions.

Never deal with anyone you know nothing about.

Never promise to deliver a product without having the actual payment in cash, in hand after keeping lines of communication open. Many such brokers are legitimate and will guarantee, by bond or telegraph draft the honesty of their offer.

Above all, our classic owner said, keep a trail of every phase, from placement of the advertisement, and of all the negotiations, with time, date, proposal, acceptance, check receipt, request for cash payment, deposit of check with the bank, announcement by bank that the check is no good, and cancellation of sale because of the insufficient funds payment.

Would he do it again?

He's not sure. He's still interested in selling his classic.

But his faith in fellow man is somewhat shaken by the experience. Only his years as a local businessman gave him the idea to carefully record each phase and prevent a huge loss.



90 years ago

Taken from Pagosa Springs New Era files of Nov. 7, 1913

W.H. Snow, the Devil Creek ranchman, raised about 40 tons of spuds this year on seven acres.

A citizen who ought to know says that there are no less than 25 bootleggers operating in Pagosa Springs. That would seem to be enough to make competition somewhat brisk.

Leon Montroy ordered a ton of potatoes recently from Del Norte and the merchant filled the order by sending him a carload. That's how it happens that Leon has been in the potato business the past few days - selling the surplus.

The Sun office is getting straightened out in its new quarters, the old Times building, which is to acquire a new roof, weather-boarding and a coat of paint.

75 years ago

Taken from SUN files of Nov. 9, 1928

M.J. Wicklem has begun work on his new garage building to be erected at the corner of San Juan and Fifth streets.

The Woman's Civic Club realized the sum of $139 for the library through their tag day on Tuesday and desire to thank all who contributed so generously.

The board of county commissioners held its regular monthly meeting today, and besides routine business closed a deal whereby the old court house property on Pagosa Street was sold to Chas. F. Rumbaugh in the sum of $2,000.

Robt. Van Voast this week completed a deal whereby he purchased the San Juan Livery and transfer business from John H. Lattin.

50 years ago

Taken from SUN files of Nov. 6, 1953

With the start of operations from a new tower near Albuquerque, television may now be received here in Pagosa Springs. The reception is not 100 percent satisfactory at all times, but in the main it is not bad. To date there is very little enthusiasm regarding TV in Pagosa. Radio reception has always been bad here and most residents have adopted a wait and see attitude. Until such time as there are three or four sets regularly giving good reception here it is doubtful if there will be any brisk demand for TV receivers.

With the end of the big game hunting season drawing to a close it gives every indication of having been one of the most successful seasons, from a hunter's viewpoint ever held here.

25 years ago

Taken from SUN files of Nov. 9, 1978

Election is over in Archuleta county with a local proposal to increase the sales tax by one percent failing, and with all incumbent office holders elected. 1,447 voters went to the polls and this is a record number for Archuleta County.

The town board had a lengthy meeting this week with discussions of liquor licenses, budgets, sidewalks, old houses, and the usual problems of dump ground and finances.

Big game season is once again in full sway and a large number of hunters are here this year. Success is reported as spotty, but nevertheless many hunters are getting their game. No serious accidents or incidents have been reported and the weather has been very nice.