April 21, 2005
Front Page

Jailer charged with aiding escapee, drug sales in jail

By Karl Isberg

Staff Writer

Following investigations by two agencies, an employee at the Archuleta County Jail was arrested on charges related to alleged drug sales within the facility and activity aiding and abetting a recent jail break.

Helen Plantiko, 23, a jailer at the county facility, was arrested April 14 as she reported to work following a vacation.

Plantiko was charged with introducing controlled substances into a jail, a class 4 felony, and aiding an escape, a class 3 felony.

According to Archuleta County Undersheriff Bob Grandchamp, Plantiko worked at the jail 14 months.

Grandchamp said information led his department to begin investigating drug-related activities by Plantiko prior to the jailbreak by three inmates March 17.

In that jail break, the three inmates - Stephen Crouse, Jonathan Jackson and Cody Dutton - escaped through the ceiling of a cell, lowered themselves down an air shaft, made their way through an unwelded rebar barrier in the shaft and dropped into an evidence locker adjacent to the garage in the basement before exiting the courthouse building. They then stole vehicles and fled the area.

Crouse and Jackson were arrested in Montana March 19 and Dutton was arrested in Commerce City March 20. All three were returned to the Archuleta County Jail.

Grandchamp said information was received indicating Plantiko may have left the evidence locker door open for the escapees, then provided information to one of the escapees concerning the status of the search.

According to Grandchamp, the Archuleta County Sheriff's Department requested the Colorado Bureau of Investigation join the investigation.

"We requested the CBI's presence," he said. "We did so because we didn't want any hint of a cover-up and they proceeded to do the criminal investigation. At the same time, our department conducted an internal investigation."

When Plantiko came to work April 14, there were CBI investigators waiting for her.

An affidavit filed last week in Archuleta County Court by CBI agent Kirby Lewis indicates Plantiko was interviewed April 14 by him and fellow agent Frank Vanacek. In that interview, Plantiko admitted to bringing marijuana into the jail on at least five occasions, receiving $20 in addition to the cost of the drugs.

The jailer also admitted she received payments of $50 to $500 for bringing tobacco into the jail. The affidavit notes the possibility Plantiko may have transported methamphetamine into the facility.

With regard to activities related to the jail escape, Plantiko told the CBI agents she received a telephone call at her residence from Dutton following his escape and flight from the area. Plantiko said she made a call to the jail to obtain information about the progress of the search then told Dutton of the arrest of the other suspects and notified him that authorities thought he was in the Boulder area and that he would be in custody soon. Plantiko told the agents she did not notify law enforcement personnel of her conversation with Dutton.

Plantiko reportedly used a credit card to post a $25,000 bail bond and was released April 14. She is scheduled to be arraigned in Archuleta County Court today.

Asked for his reaction to the situation, Archuleta County Sheriff Tom Richards said: "I'm extremely disappointed. We try to hold our people to a higher standard."

Suits, access wrangling slow 'Village' process

By Richard Walter

Staff Writer

Infighting over access to the planned Village at Wolf Creek site goes on even as lawsuits seeking to stop the construction are being heard in Alamosa.

A last-minute decision, or lack thereof April 15, temporarily halted the developers' request for access by snowmobile to Forest Service Road 391.

As late as the preceding Wednesday, they had been assured a one-day road use permit which would have allowed them into their property with potential investors and to do some initial survey work.

An apparent barrage of late opposition to use of the road and to the idea of allowing snowmobile access, followed by a conference with Forest Service legal counsel in Washington, forced cancellation of the plan.

Developer Bob Honts, however, predicts success is near, indicating a legal right to access one's own property.

Honts told The SUN the reason they wanted to use snowmobiles just once - knowing they are banned - "was because one of our investors had a broken leg ... but still wanted to see the land."

Honts, contrary to what others reported, said, "we haven't been denied anything, we just apparently underestimated the time it takes for the federal government to approve something."

Still, opponents to the project - which would place 2,100 residential units and 250,000 square feet of commercial space on a 288-acre site overlooking Wolf Creek Ski Area - are mounting new opposition and criticism of Forest Service methods.

Rio Grande National Forest Service District Ranger Tom Malacek, who first approved the permit, then said he couldn't sign it, has indicated such a permit will be granted ... and it could happen by week's end.

Honts agreed. "We'll have the permit soon," he said, "and we'll be using that road throughout the good weather months."

Suits by Colorado Wild and the San Luis Valley Ecosystem Council, aimed at stopping the Village project, are being heard jointly in Alamosa by 12th District Court Judge O. John Kuenhold and that process is expected to stretch into at least mid-summer.

Also pending are a ruling by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on the project's possible effects on endangered wetlands and lynx migration; studies of the planned resort's intended water supply and treatment of wastewater; and a study of potential impact on air quality in the nearby Weminuche Wilderness Area.

And, the Pitcher family of Pagosa Springs, owners of the Wolf Creek Ski Area and additional acreage adjacent to the proposed site of the development, as well as easement rights to U.S. 160, has attempted to block the project with a suit against Mineral County which gave the project a green light last year.

Malaceck, who was unavailable for comment Wednesday, has been quoted as saying he doesn't believe opponents can stop the project, noting developers have sufficient access to build and have passed every block in the long route toward approval.

And Honts said, "We are moving right ahead. The forest road is the easiest way to get in. And I expect us to have the necessary permit in short order."

The site has no year-round access as yet and developers must use Forest Road 391, a dirt road which begins at the rear of the ski area parking lot and is closed by heavy snow for much of the fall, winter and spring.

That said, the voices of opposition still seek any ear that will give them an audience - from Mineral County to Washington, D.C.

And Honts is just as adamant that the plan is done, the money is up front and the project "will be built.

Ranger district plans three controlled burns

Fire managers on the Pagosa Ranger District hope to conduct several prescribed burns over the next two weeks.

The locations under consideration include two areas south of Pagosa Springs, Valle Seco and Kenny Flats, and one to the west, Mule Mountain. Each burn is less than 1,000 acres and active burning is expected to last two to four days.

The order of burning will be determined by weather and ground conditions. Each of the treatment units are adjacent to areas where prescribed burning has occurred in the last three to five years as part of an ongoing program.

Before any fire is ignited, all conditions described in an approved burn plan must be met. Those conditions include temperatures, fuel moisture level, wind predictions, smoke dispersal, and available crew, backup crew and equipment.

Burns will be ignited and monitored by ground crews and kept at low intensity. Natural and man-made firebreaks will be used to help contain the fires.

The goal of the burns is to reintroduce the role of fire to the fire-dependent ponderosa pine ecosystem. The burns will reduce ground debris, prune lower branches of trees and thin oak thickets to lessen the threat of a devastating wildfire in the future.

The Valle Seco prescribed burn area is about 11 miles south of Pagosa Springs and due east of Trujillo. Daytime smoke will move to the northeast and nighttime smoke will move downslope to the southwest.

The Kenney Flats burn is approximately 13 miles south of Pagosa Springs along U.S. 84, south of Spiler Canyon. Daytime smoke is expected to travel to the northeast and downslope along the Blanco River at night, where smoke may linger until mid-morning.

The Mule Mountain prescribed fire area is north of Chimney Rock and U.S. 160, approximately 23 miles west of Pagosa Springs. It may be necessary to close Devil Mountain Road (No. 626) for a short period during active burning.

Daytime smoke is expected to rise and move to the northeast. Nighttime smoke will move down slope, but is not expected to impact populated areas because of the area's remoteness.

For further information, contact the Pagosa Ranger District at 264-2268.

 

 Inside The Sun

New release moves lynx reintroduction total to near 200

By Todd Malmsbury

Special to The SUN

The DOW released six more Canada lynx into the San Juan Mountains April 9, and by the end of the month more than 200 lynx will have been released in the reintroduction program which was started in 1999.

In their slow and unique style, six Canada lynx peered warily from their metal containment boxes, slowly set their paws on the snow and then dashed across a meadow to their new home.

That was the scene near Creede, when DOW released the six Canada lynx as part of the continuing reintroduction program. About 100 people attended the release event, including officials from a variety of supporting organizations.

For Len Gregory, a member of the board of Great Outdoors Colorado, it marked the first time he watched a lynx release.

"It was a great thrill to see those magnificent animals lope into the woods," said Gregory who represents the Pueblo area and eastern Colorado on the GOCO board. "We got a chance to see a very worthwhile project at work on the ground. Species recovery is very important, and GOCO continues to be very supportive of the DOW."

Since lynx reintroduction was started in 1999, GOCO has contributed more than $2.8 million to the program. The DOW has contributed another $1.8 million.

Two other GOCO board members attended the event: Doug Cole of Longmont who represents Northern Colorado; and Kae Rader who represents the Colorado Springs area.

Great Outdoors Colorado receives half the proceeds from lottery ticket sales. Last year that totaled $48.3 million.

"When people buy lottery tickets, they are contributing directly to preserving Colorado's natural environment," said Peggy Gordon, director of the Colorado State Lottery, who attended the release event. "The lynx reintroduction is one of the great projects supported by the Colorado State Lottery."

Another organization working to fund the program is the Colorado Wildlife Heritage Foundation.

"The foundation is raising money from the private sector to support lynx reintroduction," said Terry Combs, president of the foundation. "Lynx roamed these mountains for centuries. I hope this project ensures they will be here for centuries more."

The foundation set a goal to raise $600,000 needed for the effort, and so far it has raised $210,000. Substantial private support for reintroduction is still needed. Coloradans can all make a difference with a gift to this campaign, (www.cwhf.info). Combs and other foundation representatives attended the release event.

Also attending was state Sen. Lewis Entz, who represents the San Luis Valley and is a strong supporter of the reintroduction program. Entz was the only person at the event who had seen lynx in Colorado long before anyone even considered a reintroduction program. He told the crowd that he saw a lynx one morning in the 1940s when he was hunting in the area.

The release proved to be an important education experience for seven students from Adams City High School which is located in Commerce City. The students are studying wildlife as part of a curriculum developed by the DOW, explained Wendy Hanophy, urban wildlife education coordinator for the division. The day before the release the students visited with DOW wildlife experts at the Frisco Creek Wildlife Rehabilitation Center near Del Norte.

"I can say with certainty that I drove down with one set of kids and drove home with another," said Hanophy. "They learned about much more than lynx and our reintroduction effort. This was a profoundly life-changing experience for these kids."

Also among those attending the release were a photographer and a writer from National Geographic Magazine which plans to publish a story about the reintroduction program sometime next winter.

At 8:30 a.m. on April 9, in a parking in South Fork, the DOW's guests gathered around Tanya Shenk, lead field researcher on the reintroduction project. After explaining the release procedures, Shenk asked that everyone maintain silence at the release site to minimize any stress reactions in the cats.

Then the caravan of about 30 cars drove to the spot in a remote area southwest of Creede. At the site, the crowd watched quietly as DOW staff took the aluminum crates containing the cats off the back of pick-up trucks and carried them to the edge of a snow-covered meadow. The shelters were opened one at a time and the elegant long-legged, rusty-colored lynx moved slowly out of the boxes. As soon as all four of their paws touched the snow, the cats sprinted across the 50-yard wide meadow into the trees. In a few moments they were out of sight.

Shenk explained that the lynx are faring well in the San Juan mountains. "We can't say the reintroduction is a success yet," Shenk said. "But we are getting a lot of encouragement every step along the way."

The program has reached a milestone this year that is particularly exciting for the DOW. This is the first year that kittens born in Colorado will be old enough to breed. If female kittens produce young, it will be a significant achievement for this long-term program, Shenk said.

The reintroduction effort started in 1999, and by the end of April some 204 lynx will have been released - 38 this year. Based on counts and radio-collar tracking through the end of 2004, biologists believe at least 105 lynx are alive. That number does not include the cats released in 2005. DOW biologists have documented that at least 55 kittens have been born in Colorado. The exact number surviving is not known.

Survival rates for lynx increased dramatically after the DOW changed its release procedures. Lynx now are allowed to acclimate in pens in Colorado for a couple of months; they are well fed and their health is closely monitored. Release occurs after April 1 when the lynx are in peak condition and when food sources - mainly small young mammals - are abundant and easily captured.

The DOW is authorized by the Colorado Wildlife Commission to reintroduce lynx for another three years if needed.

"The lynx reintroduction program is recognized as one of the greatest conservation efforts going on in the United States today," said Bruce McCloskey, director of the DOW. "The effort is a testament to our dedicated staff and to the people of Colorado who firmly support this program."

Town planners lack quorum; meet Tuesday

The Pagosa Springs Planning Commission rescheduled its Tuesday night meeting for lack of a quorum. Public hearings were scheduled for the Riverwalk II Townhome project and the residential phase of the Aspen Village Project.

The Enclave, one part of the Aspen Village project, will be home to 48 townhome units on four acres between Alpha Drive and Boulder Drive. The adjacent Cottages will include 55 residences on 10.3 acres. Both are part of Phase III of the Aspen Village Development.

The planning commission meeting has been rescheduled 5 p.m.Tuesday, April 26.

 

Ancient Cultures program expands arts, social studies

This week Pagosa Springs Intermediate School kicks off its third year of Ancient Cultures, a creative arts program involving over 120 sixth-grade social studies students.

What do the performing arts have to do with social studies?

"Students come away from this program with a multisensory understanding of social studies. They are able to take what they only used to get in textbooks, and bring it to life," said Principal Mark DeVoti. "Many schools nationally are paring down academic programs to focus on core curricula, visibly devoid of enrichment activities. Thankfully, this is not the case in Pagosa Springs, as we embrace the widely accepted research which correlates increased focus on arts education programs with an increase in student achievement across the boards."

As a component of social studies, teacher Leeann Skoglund's class in Ancient Cultures extends the content of the curriculum by teaching students to perform music, dances and skits based on stories from several cultures.

According to Skoglund, "This program goes way beyond anything you can do in the classroom with just books and maps. By combining the arts with the regular school program we're able to provide an incredibly valuable learning experience."

Co-facilitators of Ancient Cultures are local musicians Paul and Carla Roberts, who specialize in creative educational programs for children. The Roberts are members of Elation Center for the Arts, a local nonprofit organization which partners with the Intermediate School to bring this cultural enrichment program to Pagosa students.

DeVoti said of the Roberts, "Their level of professionalism and ability to install further confidence in each student are exemplary, and I feel we are indeed lucky to have such a professional duo working with our students in the classroom and on stage."

The culmination of this innovative arts in education program will be an elaborate stage production for the community, to be held in the high school auditorium, 7 p.m. May 13.

Elation Center for the Arts is seeking volunteers and financial contributions to support this program. Call 731-3117 for more information.

 

School board studies proposal to increase graduation requirements

By Richard Walter

Staff Writer

Meeting the needs and strengths of all students in a rigorous and challenging curriculum can only happen if a premium is put on attendance.

That was an opening statement April 12 as a move was proposed to increase graduation requirements at Pagosa Springs High School from 24 to 28 credits.

With members of the board of education for Archuleta District 50 Joint listening attentively, Bill Esterbrook, high school principal, outlined the problem and the proposed solution.

"One of the ongoing struggles at the high school level," he said, "is to increase attendance. We've come up many times with policies we think will work ... and they do for a while.

"We've looked at punitive measures for lack of attendance. Sort of like saying, 'If you do this, this happens to you.' We've talked about ways of lifting the attendance level and gotten a few bruises along the way."

Students with a poor attendance record do not always respond to punitive measures. Meanwhile, students self-motivated to improve achievement through improved attendance are more likely to be successful over the course of their high school career.

Poor attendance is directly related, Esterbrook said, to academic failure. And often attendance issues can be linked to some students not working up to their potential. "When there are large numbers of students needing to repeat a required course due to poor attendance, the teacher/student ratio for some classes is adversely impacted."

Esterbrook said he'd been working on the new plan since November, adding and subtracting ideas "so the 95 percent who do come to class have a better chance."

The proposal, he said, rewards students for good attendance records and encourages students who struggle with attendance to attend school more frequently. "It also allows parents/guardians to make better choices when allowing their student to miss school for unnecessary reasons."

Right now, Esterbrook said, "our attendance stands at 93.8 percent. That sounds good, but if you extrapolate that over a year, you'll find it means 7,000 student days are being lost to absenteeism."

Outlining the plan, Esterbrook said increasing the number of credits required is appropriate, pointing out:

- students with excellent cumulative attendance records (95 percent or better) can earn four credits toward meeting the new 28-credit requirement;

- students with a good attendance record (90-94 percent) can earn two credits toward the new required 28 for graduation; and

- students with less than a 90 percent attendance record may not earn graduation credits from attendance record.

Beginning with the Class of 2009 (today's eighth-graders) all students must earn a minimum of 28 credits to be considered eligible to earn a diploma.

Students meeting competency in four classes each term during a four-year period will accumulate 32 credits; those same students with an excellent attendance rate will accumulate 36 credits, four of the rewards for attendance.

"It will create a premium on record keeping," Esterbrook said, "but a new program coming later this year will make it work."

And, he noted, there is a built-in appeal process, one which allows a parent/guardian an opportunity to defend the absences. And sometimes, he said, "absences are unavoidable and we have to recognize that."

From the audience, Myron Stretton asked, "if the average attendance right now is at 93.8 percent, where is the majority? What is the median?

Esterbrook agreed to research that data for presentation at the next meeting.

Director Matt Aragon said he could see problems with a low attendance rate and resultant makeup classes drawing down the chances for those in attendance and thereby affecting the overall district rate.

Esterbrook agreed, saying "In three years we may see the need to add other electives at the high school level. With no tutors or apprentices, it could mean need for additional staff."

The proposal was tabled pending additional data to be provided by Esterbrook on where students fall on average in attendance, where the median is, and where the majority fall within the studied totals.

 

Maggie Havens celebrates 92nd birthday with friends

Neighbors, friends and family gathered April 11 for a barbecue/potluck in Chromo to celebrate Margaret (Maggie) Havens 92nd birthday.

All who attended were happy to see the familiar smile and a sparkle in her eyes. Last year was difficult year for her, but she is feeling well now, and spends much of her time crocheting and working on her crossword and jigsaw puzzles. Soon, weather permitting, she will be able to enjoy the outdoors where she can keep an eye on her hummingbird feeders and the flowers soon to appear in the garden. She loves visitors, never forgets a face and is an inspiration to all who know her.

If you drive past the Chromo Store, don't be surprised to see her wave hello from the front porch of the house next door.

 

State police prefer good neighbor policy

By Richard Walter

Staff Writer

You might call it the localizing of the good neighbor policy.

When the Pagosa Lakes Property Owners Association board of directors approved leasing more space to Colorado State Patrol last month, they kept the annual fee at $1.

But, board president David Bohl said Thursday the state patrol regional commander rejected the lease contract.

Bohl said the patrol indicated it wants to be a good neighbor, and that officials felt they should pay a "fair" rental fee.

"We had kept the minimal fee because the presence of troopers in our headquarters lent a feeling of security to our members," Bohl said.

Indeed, he added, the amount of space used for a beefed up five-member patrol operation in the area "might amount to two and a half closets.

"I tried to dissuade them," Bohl told the board, but the commander was adamant.

So, the parties worked out a contract for $130 a month, based on the going rate of about $15.60 per square foot.

"Now, if you approve it," Bohl said, "they'll be paying about the same as the annual dues for a property owner on a monthly basis."

Before the board could vote, however, director Hugh Bundy wondered, "Why would they do this (reject the $1 fee)? Are we now responsible for something we were not before?"

Assured there were no changes in the contract, other than the fee, the board approved it unanimously.

After the vote, director Bill Nobles suggested the money be set aside and put into a fund to provide an annual scholarship for a student from the association graduating Pagosa Springs High School.

There were nods of the head from board members, but no discussion.

 

Airport board studies expansion stumbling blocks, mission statement

By John Middendorf

Special to The SUN

"Build it and they will come" was the theme for airport commissioners April 14, as they discussed upcoming improvements at Steven's Field.

The session quickly led to some stumbling blocks paralleling the six-year capital improvement project which will add a new north terminal near Cloman Industrial Park and improve the runways.

Although the current primary users of the airport are private single-engine planes, the goal is to create a facility which will attract more light (up to 20,000 pounds) and medium (up to 70,000 pounds) jet aircraft, which can carry commercial passenger traffic, as well entice carriers such as Fed X and UPS.

Marc Foulkrod of Avjet Corp., the company that owns the airport Flight Base Operations, said such an airport not only needs up-to-date infrastructure - including radios, and runways and control towers in place - but must also be a facility that functions professionally, with safe and rapid response to pilot needs such as refueling, with the ability to move paying passengers quickly and safely to the terminal.

Parallels were drawn to Aspen, Sun Valley and Telluride, which all accommodate larger commercial aircraft.

The general consensus was the new airport needs to look good as well.

Commission member Mark Weiler lamented the myriad pallets, junked cars and trash surrounding the "woefully planned and executed" Cloman Industrial Park, near the site where the new terminal is planned. He asked what can be done regarding enforcement of covenants in the area.

Sheryl Rogers, county attorney, explained the county has no jurisdiction over the area, unless problems such as blockage of public rights of way or threats to public health are present.

The paving of the road to the new terminal area, perceived as an important improvement, appeared to be dependent on the collective vote of the Cloman lot owners, due to the need for tax assessments to fund such a project.

The commission also discussed the problem of abandoned automobiles at the airport parking lot. A clean-up of cars not related to the airport or the Search and Rescue office located on airport property is planned.

A sheriff's vehicle check on the cars in the lot revealed many are unregistered, some since 1992.

Attending the meeting were commissioners Tom Broadbent, Nancy Torrey, Gerald Pearson, Elmer Schettler, Henry Silver and Weiler; also at the table were outgoing airport manager Ken Fox and Rogers.

Fox was officially thanked by Silver for his service to the airport and county before Robert Howard, commission chairman, led a discussion and announced formation of a committee led by Silver to work on a comprehensive mission statement.

The next commission meeting is scheduled April 28.

Donations sought for Western Heritage Events Center auction

One man's junk is another man's treasure.

The Red Ryder Roundup Rodeo Committee is looking for your junk: Everything from horses to hogs, tractors to Cadillacs, cows to goats, fine art to fine China, antiques to nearly new - if you are willing to donate it to a good cause, they will even pick it up for you.

The committee will hold a farm auction Saturday, May 28, to benefit the new Western Heritage Event Center's indoor arena at the rodeo grounds.

Contact one of the following individuals for location of delivery or pick-up: Mike Ray, 264-2812; Randy Talbot, 731-5203; Wes Lewis, 759-8499; DuWayne Shahan, 264-9512; or Craig Kamps, 883- 3019.

 Outdoors

Wildfire protection forum April 26 at fairgrounds

By Karen Aspin

Special to The SUN

Area residents can get the valuable information they need to prepare for potential wildfires at a community wildfire protection forum Tuesday, April 26.

The forum will be conducted at the Archuleta County Cooperative Extension Building at the fairgrounds on U.S. 84.

The doors open at 6 p.m. to give citizens an opportunity to meet and visit with local and regional fire experts and pick up information handouts prior to the presentations. Local fire mitigation contractors will also be there for those who can't bear another do-it-yourself project.

The forum kicks off with a 20-minute PowerPoint presentation, Wildfire and You in Archuleta County, by Laurie Robison, fire protection technician from San Juan Public Lands Center. The presentation discusses fire history; fire's role in our forest ecosystems; how Euro-American settlers, society and culture altered fire in the ecosystem; what we can and need to do to help our forests; and what homeowners need to do on their property.

A panel of fire experts will address the following topics:

- Goals and Strategies in Local Forest Fuels Management, Jo Bridges, Pagosa District Ranger, U.S. Forest Service;

- Indian Land Policies, Jim Shepherdson, fire management officer, Bureau of Indian Affairs;

- Beetle Infestations, Defensible Space and Fire Mitigation Assistance, Kent Grant, Colorado State Forest Service;

- Implementing the Archuleta County Fire Plan, Tom Ferrell, Community Fire Plan coordinator;

- Defensible Space and Fire Protection, Warren Grams, chief, Pagosa Fire Protection District;

- Evacuations and Safety Info, Tom Richards, sheriff, Archuleta County; Greg Oertel, County Fire Protection; and Russ Crowley, Emergency Preparedness (FEMA)

At approximately 8:10 p.m., an optional, 30-minute video, "First Line of Defense: Homeowners Stand Up to Wildfire," will be shown in the adjoining room. This educational film outlines the steps you can take to make your home more defensible against wildfire before it strikes. Viewers can listen to other Colorado homeowners who either saved or lost homes to wildfires during the 2002 fires.

Unlike the League of Women Voters forums most locals are accustomed to in Archuleta County, this format is designed to provide a well-rounded presentation of the issue that will not include any audience question and answer period. Instead, participants are encouraged to write down their comments and questions, come early and stay later to visit with the experts, one-on-one. A handout will provide contact numbers for most presenters, who are prepared to assist the community at any time. The doors will be open until 9 p.m.

Grams recently stated, "Everything depends on the summer weather. If it starts to dry out in May/June with low humidity going into July and August, we can end up with a dry summer with a lot of ground fuels. Then we'll be into an active fire season."

The chief quickly followed with this edict: "In order for us to protect you, you've got to help us with access, defensible space through fire mitigation measures, and by attending meetings to become informed about what you need to do."

Residents are strongly encouraged to get the facts and prepare for wildfires. Lots of handouts from Colorado State University Cooperative Extension and other agencies are available for furthering knowledge on this critical topic. Another informative resource is the San Juan Public Land Center's Web site, www.southwestcoloradofires.org. which includes such topics as how to protect your home, where to find help, breaking fire news reports, defensible space fact sheets, and great links, like the Firewise Council's "Ask an Expert." Please note this Web address on your free bookmark being mailed in the Pagosa Fire Protection District's Firehouse newsletter, which should arrive in your mailbox any day now. An error dropped off the "fires" portion of the Internet address, so be sure to make this correction on your copy.

This forum is sponsored by the Firewise Ambassadors of Aspen Springs. Subdivisions are encouraged to host neighborhood meetings to foster broader dissemination of this vital information, which can save lives and properties from needless destruction.

To serve as your neighborhood's Firewise Ambassador, or inquire about the Firewise Ambassador neighborhood program, contact: Laurie Robison, fire prevention technician, San Juan Public Lands, (970) 385-1225, or e-mail her at lrobison@fs.fed.us.

For forum information, contact Karen Aspin, 731-3138; Henry Silver, 731-9209; or Claudia Smith, 731-3665.

 

High Country Reflections

In quiet reverence, I gaze on canyon country

By Chuck McGuire

SUN Columnist

It's springtime in the Rockies, but the battle between winter and summer is far from over. True, there are more warm sunny days now, and the surrounding countryside is notably greener with budding signs of life. But while the ski season has just ended, the cold and snow persists, and all too often, my activities are confined to those indoors.

Of course, such tumultuous weather is not unexpected, or altogether unpleasant, but by this time of year, after months of long frigid nights and dark dreary days, the waiting can seem insufferable. This is a time for seeking solace in canyon country.

More than other times of year, I am most drawn to the canyons and mesas of the Colorado Plateau in April, or early May. Perhaps it is a simple longing for drier, more clement weather, or the desire to bask in the warmth of a desert sun, that compels me. Possibly, following a prolonged confinement in the relative closeness of a small mountain community, a need for solitude and comparative isolation sinks in. Or, quite plausibly, it is the spiritual and emotional uplift that inevitably overwhelms me as I stand among giant rock formations, considering the timelessness and ancient rhythms that have been at work in such grand creation. Very likely, it is all of these and other influences, which now summon me to the vast plateau region.

The plateau tableland is an arid expanse of high-elevation mesas and deep-cut canyons formed over the millenniums, as the Colorado River and its many tributaries have slowly carved their way through thick horizontal deposits of red and white sandstone. Encompassing much of southwestern Colorado, southern Utah, northern Arizona, and northwestern New Mexico, it is a varied and unrelenting landscape of extremes. Temperatures range from 25 degrees below zero on the coldest winter nights to more than a hundred above, most summer days. Annual precipitation seldom exceeds 12 inches, most of which comes in the form of snow. Mornings are often quiet and still, yet, depending on the season, rising afternoon winds can suddenly usher in a severe winter blizzard, or a blinding summer dust storm.

Springtime, however, offers a brief period of tranquility. High pressure settles in, diverting the flow of Pacific storm fronts well to the north, and for several weeks at least, days are warm and pleasant, with high temperatures hovering in the 80s and low 90s. Nights are downright balmy, and conditions are certainly suitable for tent camping, or even sleeping under the stars. A short-sleeved shirt and short pants are the most comfortable apparel for daytime activities like hiking, mountain biking, or floating a meandering western river, while jeans and a light jacket will usually suffice for evening walks, cooking dinner over an open fire, or simply sitting and studying the constellations.

Unsurprisingly, the popularity of springtime recreation in canyon country has increased dramatically over the past few decades. As the mountain west has grown, more people have discovered the heartening satisfaction of renewed warmth and relative quiet characteristic of the desert southwest, particularly after enduring a long winter in one of the many western ski resorts, or other snowbound sub-alpine communities.

But even with the annual influx of those seeking temporary reprieve, the Colorado Plateau is a vast, mostly-undeveloped region, and true solitude is not hard to find. Naturally, it helps to avoid more popular destinations, like the Colorado National Monument, Arches, or Bryce Canyon National Park, and when camping, backpacking at least a mile from roads, picnic areas, or improved campgrounds all but eliminates the likelihood of encountering other vacationers.

Admittedly, Jackie and I haven't backpacked for some time now, and are content to Jeep into semi-remote areas, where we'll pick an existing campsite and set up the tent, a couple of folding chairs, a hammock, and a primitive, though adequate, camp kitchen. By hauling an ice chest along, we can prepare appetizing meals, and cold beverages are always within easy reach.

More often than not, we'll meet other travelers from time to time, but most are just passing by, and few ever camp within view of our site. The overwhelming majority are friendly and quiet, and in this day and age, the knowledge that others are not far away lends an added sense of security, in case unforeseen problems should arise. And, at moments when absolute privacy is preferable, virtual seclusion is only a short walk from camp.

For me, nature in all its forms is magical and mystical, but the sheer beauty and agelessness of the canyons speak of true spiritual matters. Whenever I am alone, whether casually strolling through a narrow side canyon, or standing high atop a colossal redrock escarpment, I feel as though I am in the company of the ancient ones who, for hundreds of years, eked out a meager existence in the scant waters and forests available there.

At times, I can almost hear their gentle voices in the unwavering breezes drifting through the towering stone monoliths and sparse pinõn and juniper shrubs that dot the countryside. I can sense their presence along the ancient trails and in the primeval settlements that still bear the archaic pictographs, pottery shards, and other signs, depicting their social and ecological existence. I can never actually see them, but I believe their spirits linger.

Too, for the animals inhabiting such harsh surroundings, there is purpose and significance in every sound, every movement, for without perfect order and adaptation, no living creature could survive long, let alone flourish, as the Fence Lizards, Western Rattlesnakes, and Common Ravens have.

The canyon country is an amazing environment, and as I gaze upon the broad and magnificent terrain, trying to imagine the compelling forces and altogether incomprehensible span of time that has elapsed in the shaping of such creation, I am stirred to utter reverence.

At once, I am convinced that God, the greatest of spirits, has raised his mighty hand and blessed us all with a place like no other, a land where one feels small and insignificant, yet certainly part of a grand scheme.

Letters

Steps of faith

Dear Editor:

Yes, there are specific reasons that I am glad G.W. Bush is president:

"When living in a time when sex means death, when rain drops can kill you, when people shoot at you on the freeways, when everybody in politics is a lying swine. I'm embarrassed for a generation of people who accept this." H.S. Thompson.

In the midst of our chaos, G.W. Bush has advanced the societal position of gays, women and Hispanic/African American's light years through his appointment of representatives successfully to positions of power. There will be no going back for those among us still longing for a world dominated by heterosexual male white world. "Either we keep the cultural stew well stirred, or we get a lot of scum on top." Abbey.

Further, for all the lies and wrong reasons, Iraq may, just may, turn out to be the fulcrum tipping the Mideast toward something other than our Armageddon.

Not to be seconded, Laura Bush is a true plus for America. Granted, I voted for Kerry but Š had reservations about his wife as first lady. No reservations about Laura. Maybe Dean Summers at Harvard kicked it off again but Laura has stepped into the education dilemma of how to handle sexual variances in learning and capabilities Š no small undertaking.

And finally, I am glad G. W. Bush has chosen to redeem President Clinton with assignment of high profile global tasks in association with his father, Bush senior. Clinton would likely have languished as a deviant who sorrowfully had tremendous promise.

If Bush is to be remembered for anything positive, I believe it will be for these courageous steps of faith.

Dave Blake

Unfocused picture

Dear Editor:

In the State of California, Scott Peterson has been convicted of first-degree murder in the death of his wife. He was also convicted of second-degree murder for ending the life of his unborn son when he allegedly murdered Lacy Peterson.

How is it that a man can be convicted of second-degree murder for ending his unborn son's life when that act is committed "legally" every day through abortion, even late term abortion?

More recently, the Congress of the United States, and the State of Florida jumped in to protect the life of Terri Schiavo. Will they be so quick to "protect" the thousands of other daughters and sons who are aborted because of Roe v. Wade, when the legality of that issue comes up for consideration soon?

Pro life, or pro choice, you have to ask, "What's wrong with this picture?"

Dahrl Henley

PAWS mistake

Dear Editor:

I believe the recent decision by the PAWS Board was a mistake that will have far reaching consequences for the future dental health of our children.

I am a registered civil/sanitary engineer and have specialized in water supply, treatment and distribution for more then 40 years. I began my career in 1961 in the midst of the "Fluoride Wars". The water industry was dead set against the addition of fluoride, and most dentists and young parents wanted it.

All of the current arguments were there, especially that of toxicity and the lack of functionality.

The issue boiled down to two realistic opposing positions. On one side, why should the water industry get into the medical field? If so, why not add other necessary trace elements such as copper, zinc etc.? The other argument was that at very little cost, the water industry could virtually eliminate dental cavities and tooth loss. The latter argument prevailed, I think because the benefits were irrefutable and especially because the poorer people that could not afford the dental fluoride treatments would be protected.

Fluoride is toxic in large doses, but way, way, way beyond what is in, or is added to public water. Fluoride does occur naturally, usually as calcium fluoride or fluorspar, and to a lesser degree as sodium fluoride. It occurs primarily in shallow unconsolidated gravel aquifers. These are most prevalent in the glacial outwash areas of the upper Midwest and in the south eastern portions of Texas. The concentrations usually vary from about 0.3 ppm to 5 or 6 ppm.

In virtually all of these areas the people drink well water, and have been since the inception of the public systems in about 1880, and prior to this from individual wells. I know of no epidemiological problems in these areas.

My wife and I did not benefit from fluoride; we had most of our teeth filled prior to high school. Our first child was born before public system fluoride, so we had the dental applications for her. The others came along after fluoride was added to our water. The total number of cavities for all four of our children is two, and all (ages 30 to 40) are in excellent health. Ironically, our older daughter's children do have cavities and we believe it is because she has allowed them to drink fruit juices instead of tap water.

I would urge everyone to read an article in the April 12 issue of the New York Times entitled "Filling a Need (and a tooth) in America's Poorest Pockets" (nytimes@nytimes.com). It discusses the major dental problems with youth in New Mexico and Southern Colorado, and notes the lack of fluoride as one of the factors.

Dick Riethmiller

Donated space

Dear Editor:

Happened to notice our Archuleta County Commissioner "Road Warrior" Schiro at the recent home show.

That was pretty terrific of the builder's association to donate a $350 booth for county utilization. However, I can't figure out what the "Road Warrior" was doing there with husband. Were they selling real estate ... or what?

Was going to stop and inquire what five acres would bring on the current market but got sidetracked chitchatting with some builders/investors.

Darn it: How ignorant of me. The Road Warrior was possibly advising area builders, developers etc., on how to construct a road to palaces they are erecting in the forest somewhere.

Great idea!

Question: Wonder why our other two commissioners didn't attend? Maybe they were not aware of the no-cost opportunity.

Jim Sawicki

Editor's note: Please read Robin Schiro's letter printed below.

Schiro replies

Dear Editor:

After reading Pat Curtis' letter in last week's paper, "One at the Show," I would like to respond with the following:

Thank you so much for your letter Pat. Yes, another great home show has come and gone. But the Pagosa Springs Builders Association did not offer the Archuleta County Commissioners a complimentary booth, they offered it to Archuleta County valued at $350. It was extremely generous on behalf of the Pagosa Springs Builders Association, especially their board and staff. Yes, there was nothing wrong with that offer at all, especially since it was discussed in an open public meeting on April 5, 2005. It's too bad you couldn't have been there Pat.

In that open public meeting, the commissioners discussed not wanting to pay overtime for county employees to man the booth, or to spend a lot of preparation time for the Home Show. The commissioners also discussed the possibility of not accepting that generous offer of the booth, if it could not be manned for the entire weekend. It is at that time that I volunteered to man the booth for the entire weekend to be sure that the county was represented, ensuring that no county employees were paid overtime to do so. The other two commissioners said they both had prior commitments, but that if I wanted to man the booth that would be fine. So you see Pat, one commissioner did not make a unilateral decision to accept that gift and then personally man the booth. And, my husband was generous enough to help me by providing me with an opportunity for an occasional break, and yes he is not a county employee although he is a resident of the county. (We should all be so lucky to have our spouse sit outside on a cold and snowy day on a metal chair for hours on a weekend when he could have been in Winslow, Ariz., with the San Juan Outdoor Club).

As you know, the booth had information that covered many aspects of the county's outreach, including fire prevention, home energy conservation, building permit procedures, pictures of noxious weeds in the area, and extension information such as soil amendments and perennial plants. Nothing covered that entire weekend had any direct personal benefit to the "One at the show." I hope we will have the opportunity to have a booth again next year.

By all means, if "something just doesn't seem right here" in the future, please do not hesitate to give the commissioners a call at 264-8300. Thank you again for your letter and question of the issue. I look forward to more of your letters.

Robin Schiro

Parking lot terror

Dear Editor:

This letter is to the inconsiderate and dishonest individual whose truck was parked next to my vehicle at the elementary school Saturday morning, April 5, for the Fair - thanks very much for scraping the side of my green van and not leaving your name and phone number when you left.

I doubt you would actually have the intelligence to read the Letters to the Editor but just in case you do I wanted to thank you for your total disregard for me and my property.

You are no doubt a parent or grandparent who was also attending the Fair and you, of all people, should realize how parents can ill afford repairs to their vehicles when attempting to support their children - of which I have three. I would also like to thank you so much for depreciating the value of my van by the damage caused by your truck.

In conclusion, to all of you out there who accidentally hit another person's vehicle when it is parked, please have the consideration to leave your name and number because we should not have to live with parking lot terrorists in the USA, let alone Pagosa Springs.

Liz Starks

Blessing, warning

To all those who have "prayed for snow" the last five years, "Thank You!"

We have been blessed. The upper San Juan Basin SNOTEL stations have reported an early April 54-inch and 49-inch snow water equivalent, or greater than 150 percent of average.

Runoff is forecast at 155 percent of average. Presently, we are experiencing low elevation runoff, below 9,000 feet. This is generally followed by a lull prior to the onset of the high elevation runoff, peaking in June.

U.S. Geological stream flow forecasts are for San Juan River to peak around 3,500 cubic feet per second, the volume changing based on local weather patterns.

It is this time when rivers will "reclaim their banks." Riverside and river edge can become "river-is." Downfall, fences, lawn furniture and small pets can be at risk. Of special concern are cut banks along the San Juan and its tributaries.

Please keep children away from these steep banks, as they are apt to slough off into the water.

Enjoy the rivers. Be safe.

Val Valentine,

Water commissioner

Colorado Division of

Water Resources

Homeowner dues

Dear Editor:

I would like to address the latest wrinkle by the voluntary Holiday Acres Property Owners Association.

I recently sold a property in Holiday Acres and was informed by the title company that, at the request of the association, they would have to retain monies for unpaid back dues.

As it was touted at the time of formation that it was voluntary, I chose not to join, so how could I possibly owe back dues? I instructed the title company not to release those funds but to put them in a non-interest bearing escrow account until this matter is settled.

Be forewarned property owners, if you elected not to be a part of the association, and if you sell your property, you are going to be hit with this.

I inquired as to whether a lien was placed on my property and was informed no lien had been placed against us. Anyone can place a lien on your property if you owe him or her a debt and the county clerk's office then records said lien. But this is the first time I have ever heard that someone or some entity can issue a verbal request to have someone's funds withheld and not have any legal papers to back them up.

I understand a judgment has been placed against the association for this very same practice. If you have this problem, please discuss it with your title company and ask them not to release your funds until they have some legal instruction to do so from the court.

It seems that the majority of revenue generated from dues paid is being used to pay past legal expenses caused by the loss of the lawsuit against the owners of mobile homes. I guess the association loves to have and to cause legal problems for themselves and others.

Audreé Williams

Separation redux

Dear Editor:

Despite the fact that 92 percent of Americans favor the retention of "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance, liberal secularists, including judges usurping legislative power, foist their claims that public uses of "under God," the Ten Commandments, etc., violate a purported Constitutional "separation of Church and State."

This was unheard of until 1947 when Justice Hugo Black, an antireligious Klansman, averred that our country's founding fathers were irreligious and regulated "separation" to keep God out of public or governmental life, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary. What evidence?

The "separation" clause is not in the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, or any other document. The first amendment to the Bill of Rights (12-15-1791) states, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof."

"Separation" was first used by Thomas Jefferson in a private letter to a group of Baptists to explain that the first amendment's non-establishment and religious freedom references mean freedom to worship, not from worship. Two days later he attended church services, which he often did, in the House of Representatives chamber. Services were also held in the Capitol until attendance exceeded 2,000, necessitating relocation.

Contrary to secularists's assertions, the founding fathers believed it most appropriate to use government buildings for religious purposes. In 1774 the Continental Congress invited Rev. Jakob Duché to begin each session with a prayer, and in 1787, Benjamin Franklin proposed each day begin with prayer since "God governs in the affairs of men."

Addressing "separation" at the state level, Virginia legislators united religion and politics more closely, including Jefferson's Sabbath Law and the sanctioning of days of prayer and fasting, occasioning the migration of Methodists to Oregon and Mormons to Utah. This bond stemmed from earliest times following the Mayflower Compact. Except for Jamestown, an economic colony, all colonies were established on religious grounds. One had to be a church member to have stock in a colony, and one had to have stock to vote. Thus, church membership determined whether or not one was a citizen!

The Capital buildings, following the original plan of Pierre Charles L'Enfant, were arranged in the form of a cross to honor Jesus Christ, with the White House north , the Jefferson Memorial south, the Capital east, and the Lincoln Memorial west. At the crux stands the Washington Monument built to dedicate our nation to God. Atop the 555-foot, 5.125 inch obelisk are the words "Laus Deo" (praise to God). Adorning the 898 steps and 50 landings within are religious expressions from people around the world. On the 24-inch landing are Scripture quotes from children in New York and Pennsylvania.

As King David acknowledged, "Unless the Lord build the house, they labor in vain who build it. Unless the Lord guard the city, in vain does the guard keep vigil" )Ps. l27:1). It is time to forestall secularists' destructive incursions and restore our heritage.

Eugene Witkowski

Kate's Calendar

Kate's Calendar

By Kate Terry

PREVIEW Columnist

Today

The Mountainview Homemakers and the Pagosa Garden Club are coordinating an 11:30 a.m. meeting at Community United Methodist Church. Call Frances Wholf, 731-2012, or Shirley Van Dyken Stone at 731-0465 for more information.

Today

The Pagosa Springs Woman's Club will tour Bayfield Gardens. Lunch at the DoubleTree Restaurant in Durango will follow. Meet in the Radio Shack parking lot at 10 a.m. to carpool.

Today

Soup for the Soul is a fund-raiser for the Hospice of mercy. The chefs at two local restaurants will be serving soups: Clam chowder prepared by Russ Apodaca of Victoria's Parlor and French onion soup by Gene Coatney of JJ's Upstream Restaurant. Soups will be served 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. at the senior center. Donations will be appreciated.

Today-April 23

"Once Upon A Wolf," the Pagosa Springs Music Boosters' madcap family fantasy will be performed at the Parish Hall of Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church. Show time is 7:30 p.m. Non-reserved tickets can be purchased at the Plaid Pony or at the door. Tickets are $12 for adults, $10 for seniors and $6 for students and children.

April 22 and 23

Community Center Rummage Sale, 3-6 p.m. Friday, 7:30 a.m.-noon Saturday. Food and beverages will be sold during this event.

April 24-30

As a continuation of Soup for the Soul, these local restaurants will be serving soup, a portion of the sales going to Hospice of Mercy: Dionigi's, The Hog's Breath, Isabel's, JJ's Upstream, Pagosa Baking Company, The Unfortunate Sausage and Victoria's Parlor.

April 26

Come learn about wildfire protection at the Extension building, located at the fairgrounds on U.S. 84. A panel of experts and plenty of handouts will give you the firewise facts to safeguard your home and family. Doors open 6 p.m. to meet experts and gather literature. The forum begins at 6:30, followed by a 30-minute video, "First Line of Defense: Homeowners Take a Stand Against Wildfire" and continued opportunities to get your personal questions addressed by the experts.

April 27

The Chamber of Commerce SunDowner will be held at the Humane Society's Thrift Store at 5 p.m. This is the famous "Chocolate Auction." The price is $4 to cover the Chamber's costs. The theme is "Beach Party."

April 30

Biannual clothing giveaway at St. Patrick's Episcopal Church on South Pagosa Boulevard, next door to Dr. Mary Fisher Clinic. Hours are 9 a.m.-3 p.m.

 

Community News

The buzz in the artist's hive: Shy Rabbit Studio

By Erin K. Quirk

Staff Writer

Susan Andersen, exhibits director at the Durango Arts Center, told an interesting story Sunday afternoon at Shy Rabbit studio.

As a former gallery owner in Portland, Ore., Andersen spoke of three neighborhoods in the area that were all empty streets and abandoned warehouses - sorry parts of town that nobody had good reason to be in. Over the years, she watched a few intrepid gallery owners move into the area and plant hip, new galleries. They'd water them with some edgy, new talent and suddenly people had a reason to be there. Shortly thereafter a few chic businesses would pop up like weeds.

After a few years, what was a hollow, unlovely part of town would become so vibrant and bubbly that the galleries could no longer afford the rent there and would move to some other run down, sorry section of town.

Artists, in her mind, are not only critical to the fabric of a culture, but are often the genesis of buzzing, lively urban centers.

About 30 working and aspiring artists gathered at Shy Rabbit - Michael and Denise Coffee's ceramics studio and burgeoning gallery on Bastille Drive - to consider Andersen's remarks and pepper her with their own questions.

These "Artist Salons," designed to draw local artists out of their backyard hermitages, give credence to the idea that an artists community already exists in Pagosa Springs. We just don't realize it.

To wit, on Saturday night Shy Rabbit hosted its first gallery opening featuring Michael Coffee's ceramic art and custom lithographs. Nearly 125 people showed up for the event.

The Coffees came to Pagosa Springs from Los Angeles a few years ago and brought with them the energy and belief that artists do exist here and just need a stimulating and clever community to interact with. For that reason they have started a Web-based artist network, hosted five artist salons and purchased property down the street from the current Shy Rabbit for a brand new 14,000 square foot art facility.

"We want to reach out and get the energy flowing," Denise said.

The latest idea to burst out of the Shy Rabbit Studio is the "Fiction to Art" project. The Coffees sent out a call to local artists in every medium, asking them to interpret a 500-word fiction piece written by local author C.J. Hannah. The artists will have 8 1/2 by 11 canvases to, in whatever medium, interpret his piece entitled "The Mortality of Kodak Moments." The work is an aching treatise on our fleeting and insignificant mortality.

In four days, 29 people responded to the call. Each artist will interpret the work in their own way and then, on Saturday night, May 14, Shy Rabbit will hold a reception to exhibit the work. Each artist will be asked to explain his or her interpretation and Hannah will choose the work that most accurately represents his intention or choose the one that caused him to rethink his intention the most.

All of the artists involved have agreed to allow their work to become the first piece in this yet-unnamed group's collection. The event will be followed the next day by another artist salon, where a gallery owner has been invited to speak.

Andersen's role at Sunday's artist salon was to light a fire among the artists present, helping them understand the business end of the art world: "It's not overwhelming, you just have to take a small step."

Andersen is a firm believer in leaping right in the middle of life and trusting one's passion to define one's path. She insisted that artists make the business aspect of their work a much greater mountain than it need be. She advised the artists to "be creative and involve someone else." From a sales and marketing standpoint, she advised the group to volunteer in their chosen fields thereby making more contacts and delving deeper into the field they love.

"It's all about giving, it's all about volunteering but it's also about asking," said Andersen, herself an enthusiastic asker. She added that artists assume there is no such thing as "patrons" anymore. Not true, she said. "Amazingly enough, a lot of people love to help artists."

Andersen is a jewelry artist, a soft-sculpture artist, a graphic and interior designer, a gallery exhibitor and owner. She explained the business from all of those angles. She said that gallery owners want to see cohesion and a style in a body of work and something original they can get excited about. She encouraged the artists to get out and enjoy galleries but while there, scope out the gallery's style and ascertain if their own work would mesh before sending an inquiry.

Like the Coffees, Andersen stressed education and passion - reaching out to other people, generating the energy and getting connected. To that end, the Coffees have developed an Arts Network to help "artists connect and collaborate with other artists, writers, arts leaders and people of artists vision" on-line. On this site people can post messages and announcements, share files and create group calendars. To ease communication in the group, Michael is also developing a "blog" - short for a Web log - which is an easy medium for people to post their thoughts on the web.

To get involved with Pagosa Springs' newest artist community call the Coffees at 731-2766 or sign up with the Arts Network at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ArtsNetwork.

 

'Once Upon a Wolf' begins three show run tonight

By John Graves

Special to The PREVIEW

Tonight's the opening night for the Pagosa Springs Music Boosters' production of "Once Upon a Wolf."

This evening of "fractured fairy tales" will make for a wonderfully madcap event for the whole family. The show starts 7:30 p.m. in the Parish Hall of the Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church on Lewis Street in downtown Pagosa Springs.

An outstanding cast includes Don Ford, Candy Flaming, Rita Jensen, Roger Jensen, Honor Nash-Putnam, Becca Stephens and Sally Yates. Director Michael DeWinter is ably assisted by director's apprentice Randi Andersen and assistant to the director Rachel Jensen.

Following the performance of the play, there will be a short presentation of vaudeville type acts, known in those days as an "olio."

Performances of "Once Upon a Wolf" will also be presented Friday and Saturday, April 22 and 23.

Non-reserved seat tickets may be purchased at the Plaid Pony or at the door. Ticket prices range from $12 for adults, $10 for seniors over 60, and $6 for students and children.

For additional information, call DeWinter at 731-5262.

 

Community choir readies two May concerts

The Pagosa Springs Community Choir will present its third annual spring concert entitled "And the Night Shall Be Filled With Music," in the high school auditorium Friday, May 6, at 7 p.m. and on Mother's Day, Sunday, May 8, at 4 p.m.

The choir is directed by Pam Spitler and Larry Elginer and is made up of 61 local volunteers who love to sing. The choir is accompanied by Sue Anderson, Shirley McGee and Rada Neal.

The choir program will include "And the Night Shall Be Filled With Music," "William Tell Overture," "Dry Bones," "It's Ragtime" and "Go 'Way From My Window." The Jazz Group will be perform three numbers; the men will do "Sixteen Tons" and the ladies will sing "I Got the Sun in the Mornin'."

The concert will open with a performance by the Children's Chorale with 25 young vocalists, ages 6 to 14, directed by Anderson.

Baked goods and candy will be for sale after each concert.

The choir is providing a nice way to remember Mother - with her name mentioned in the program. Call Valley Lowrance before April 29 at 731-9184 for cost and details.

As always, the choir is pleased to provide free admission for this program as a gift to the community. The organization gratefully accepts any donations, which are tax deductible.

 

Two May events to mark Pagosa's heritage

Two special events in Pagosa Springs will celebrate Archaeology and Historic Preservation Month, sponsored by the Colorado Historical Society.

"Preserving Colorado's Native Heritage" is the theme of the 11th year of observing Colorado's rich archaeological and historic heritage.

The Pagosa Springs' Historic Preservation Board will host an historic walking tour 9 a.m. Saturday, May 7.

Glenn Raby, local historian and member of the Historic Preservation Board will be the guide. Information will be presented on the historic buildings and important local historic events.

This free event is open to the public. Meet at Goodman's Department Store, 404 Pagosa St.

For more information: Tamra Allen, 264-4151, Ext. 235.

A poster contest at the junior high school, sponsored by the historic preservation board recently produced a winning design that will be made into posters and displayed around town in early May.

One hundred and four events from 48 cities are scheduled across the state during May, including exhibits, lectures, tours, preservation awards, balls, teas, competitions and lighthearted festivities.

A complete listing of cities, sponsors and events taking place is available by calling (303) 866-3395 or visiting www.coloradohistory-oahp.org.

Red Ryder Roundup royalty tryouts slated

By Sandy Bramwell

Special to the Preview

Red Ryder Roundup committee invites all young ladies who can ride a horse to try out for 2006 royalty.

The ages are: queen 16-21, princess 8-15, by the day of competition. The young ladies cannot be or have been married, pregnant or hold any other royalty title during their reign as Red Ryder Royalty.

The first queen was Jacquelyn (Eaklor) Baxstrom, in 1949. This year's selection will be the 58th queen. Chelsea Montroy is our 2005 queen. Keyton Nash-Putnam is our 2005 princess.

The young ladies will represent Red Ryder Roundup and Pagosa Springs at several rodeos and parades in Colorado and New Mexico. The lucky queen will win a crown, belt buckle, jacket, saddle with head stall and breast collar. The lucky princess will win a crown, belt buckle, jacket, head stall and breast collar.

Goodman's Department Store is donating the saddle, head stall and breast collar to the queen. Boot Hill is generously donating the head stall and breast collar to the princess. Please stop in and tell them how wonderful it is that they are supporting these young ladies.

Royalty will be crowned during the rodeo on the Fourth of July. The girls will be competing starting June 30, in the riding competition. The personality competition will be held July 2 at 2 p.m. All young ladies who are interested can contact Sandy Bramwell at 264-5959 or Belinda Thull at 731-5269.

Applications can be picked up at the Extension building after April 30. Applications must be turned into Sandy or Belinda at the Extension office by June 4, midnight. There will be a mandatory meeting for the young ladies and their parents or guardians. For practice times, contact Sandy. The first practice will be held June 10 at 4:30 p.m at the rodeo arena.

Organizers encourage everyone to attend all the competitions and encourage your favorite contestant. All competitions are open to the public and are free.

 

County fair royalty pageant set Sunday

By Fran O'Brien

Special to The PREVIEW

The Royalty Court for the 2005-2006 Archuleta County Fair will be chosen 5 p.m. Sunday in Pagosa Springs High School Auditorium.

No small task, this process!

These girls have been rehearsing and working for the past six to eight weeks. There are several facets in arriving at the final outcome, and it takes dedication on the girls' part.

This year, the royalty categories are: Junior Princesses, ages 6-10; Princesses, ages 11-13; and Queen, ages 14-18.

Each girl is required to attend all rehearsal sessions, with a grace allotment of one absence. At these rehearsals the girls are taught a group dance which they will perform the night of the pageant. However, a rehearsal may also be designed to deal with public speaking, "getting to know you" sessions, and tips on hair, makeup and skin-care.

The Royalty Pageant itself is broken into two sessions: one Saturday, the other a public session Sunday.

At the Saturday session, each contestant will have a private interview with the three judges.

The judges will ask a few baseline questions so all the girls are on equal footing. "Since the Royalty does so much public speaking, this format gives the judges the ability to see how the contestants perform on a one-on-one basis," said Mary Jo Coulehan, co-director of the pageant.

"The girls are often asked questions about the fair, their role with the fair, and their personal interests when asked out to a public speaking engagement. This gives the judges an idea of how quick the individual can react to a question and her poise and ability to deal with people," Coulehan said.

The second part of the contest has to do with the stage appearance. The girls are asked to appear numerous times throughout their reign - they need to be able to express themselves and represent the county well when out in public. Each contestant is asked a question that they will need to respond to in public.

"This is when they feel the pressure is on," said Coulehan. "Both parts of the pageant are very important." While on stage, the girls also perform their dance routine. They are not judged on this performance; it is meant to be an exercise in teamwork and is another way to improve their public appearance skills.

Having directed the pageant for the past three years, Coulehan thinks these girls need to get more out of the pageant than just winning. "There are a lot of contestants and only one person can win. I stress this from the beginning. It is hard to see friends work on the pageant together and then realize that perhaps one of them will win and one won't. I have tried to develop the pageant process as one where the girls will always take something away from the experience. That is why we have public speaking classes, a class on hair and makeup, and we work on dance - to give them balance at this potential awkward age.

"We encourage a girl to 'be yourself.' This essence will shine through during the interview process and a winner will be chosen. I'm just glad that I don't have to be the judge since I see every candidate as a winner and would love to work with each of them."

 

Chamber plans photo promo for town; get yours in

If you think you have a great photographic shot of some facet of Pagosa Springs, whether it is a landscape shot, a seasonal shot, an action shot or an event shot, the Chamber of Commerce would like to see it.

The Chamber is in the process of putting together a media sheet for Pagosa Springs using numerous "thumbnail" photos to represent the area and the community.

"The point of this call to all photographers is to get a wide array of photographic perspectives on Pagosa for this media sheet," stated Mary Jo Coulehan, executive director. "The Chamber will be using these photos for the media page and perhaps in other uses, primarily in print advertising. The entries will be judged and 15-20 shots will be chosen."

Photos should be submitted to the Chamber by Friday, May 6. Anyone may submit Pagosa scene photos. The photos may be submitted via hard-copy print, negative, slide or electronically. Pictures may be vertical or horizontal images. You may submit as many photos as you like. More than one picture by a particular artist may also be chosen.

Photos to be used will be selected by Wednesday, May 11. Each photo chosen will be awarded $100. Hard copy photographs will be returned by the end of the month

In submitting your photo and winning, you should be aware your picture may be used by the Chamber of Commerce in media other than the media page and you will be asked to sign a release to this effect. Whenever the photo is used, credit to the artist will be given if possible.

"We are trying to create a library of photos and we are just looking for the best of Pagosa Springs and all its beautiful seasons, landscape, people and outdoor activities," said Coulehan. "We also want to give credit where credit is due. I'm here to promote Pagosa Springs and I know there are lots of great shots out there, taken by professionals and amateurs. Unlike many other communities, I also want to financially reward the photographers and try and get them some exposure - no pun intended."

Dig through all those photo albums or CD discs and either drop your pictures off to the Chamber or send to info@pagosa chamber. com. Winners will be announced in The SUN during May. A copy of the media sheet will be sent to the artists and will be on display at the Chamber.

Any questions should be forwarded to Coulehan at 264-2360.

Film Society will review 'Cinema Paradiso'

The 1989 Italian film "Cinema Paradiso" will be screened and discussed by the Pagosa Springs Film Society Tuesday in the Pagosah Unitarian Universalist Fellowship Hall.

This cinema classic, written and directed by Guiseppe Tornatore and starring Philippe Noiret, won the 1990 Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Picture, a Golden Globe, and the Grand Prize of the Jury Award at the Cannes Festival.

It is subtitled and rated "R" for occasional sexual implications.

The plot centers around a famous film director who returns home to a Sicilian village for the first time after almost 30 years. He reminisces about his childhood at the Cinema Paradiso where Alfredo, the projectionist, first brought about his love of films (despite the censoring by the local priest of every kiss or potentially passionate moment).

Critic Roger Ebert said, "Anyone who loves movies is likely to love 'Cinema Paradiso'."

The starting time is 7 p.m. and there is a suggested $3 donation to the Friends of the Library. The Fellowship Hall is Unit 15 in Greenbriar Plaza. Turn east on Greenbriar Drive off of North Pagosa by the fire station, then left into the parking lot and look for the big sign.

Unitarians to discuss Loaves and Fishes

The April 24 Pagosah Unitarian Universalist Fellowship service will be devoted to Loaves and Fishes, Pagosa's unique experiment in a communitywide free lunch. The speaker will be Joanne Irons, one of the motivating forces behind this innovative program, which included volunteers from local churches and organizations, including the UU Fellowship.

Irons will share how a vision of a few people has become a popular community-based social action venture. She will also relate how it went, what was learned and where it's going. Suggestions and comments from the congregation about the Loaves and Fishes program and its future will be welcomed.

The service and children's program will start at 10:30 a.m. The Unitarian Universalist Fellowship Hall is Unit 15 in Greenbriar Plaza. Turn east on Greenbriar Drive off of North Pagosa by the fire station, then left into the parking lot and look for the big sign. All are welcome.

 

'Shake, Rattle and Roll the Dice' at Casino Royale

"Shake, Rattle and Roll the Dice" is the theme for this year's Rotary Casino Royale, to be held Saturday, May 7, at Montezuma Vineyards and Restaurant from 6 to 10 p.m.

It's a night out on the town packed full of fun: 1950s music, hors d'oeuvres, cash bar, drawings, silent auction and funny money gambling.

Every ticket holder to Rotary Casino Royale is eligible for the grand prize drawing, a diamond solitaire necklace valued at over $3,400 donated by Jem Jewelers.

Every ticket holder receives $50,000 in "funny money" to play blackjack, craps, roulette, wheel of fortune and poker.

Use your funny money to purchase prize tickets for the end-of-evening drawings and silent auction.

There is also a treasure trove of at least 40 prizes, to be given away in individual drawings or bid on in the silent auction.

A sampling of silent auction items include ladies' and men's jackets from Monograms Plus, jewelry and books from Touchstone Consultants, a gift basket from Snips, 4-H Teddy Bear from CSU Cooperative Extension, jewelry from Clarion Mortgage Lending, fly fishing goodies from Ladies-in-Wading, a gift certificate/basket from Wrap It Up, a website package including 12 hours of consulting and up to 12 pages of marketing support plus graphic design and hosting from Gryphon Consulting, fine fragrances from Jem Jewelers, a diamond gemstone ring from Jem Jewelers, composter bin from Appraisal Services, full Quanton treatment from Moore Chiropractic, chiropractic exam from Moore Chiropractic, Weber grill from Pam Lynd and Mike Alley, six-months mini storage from United Mini Storage, gift basket from Full Moon Beauty Salon, hot air balloon ride for two during ColorFest from Rocky Mountain Balloon Adventures, ski passes from Wolf Creek Ski Area and a gift certificate for a membership from Curves plus many more fantastic items. Watch next week for additional items.

Tickets are $50 per person, and you'll round up $50,000 in funny money to play blackjack, roulette, craps and poker, including Texas Hold'em.

One hundred percent of the net proceeds from this event are returned to the community.

Tickets are available from your favorite Rotary member, at the Pagosa Springs Chamber of Commerce, Jem Jewelers, The Pagosa Springs SUN and Jann C. Pitcher Real Estate.

This event is made possible by the following title sponsors: Montezuma Vineyards and Restaurant, The Pagosa Springs SUN and Jem Jewelers.

Gold Sponsors include Bank of Colorado, Citizens Bank, Clarion Mortgage, Jann C. Pitcher Real Estate, KWUF AM & FM Radio, Old West Press, Parelli Natural Horsemanship, Pro Line Plumbing and Wells Fargo Bank.

Silver Sponsors include Big O Tire, Curtis and Carmen Miller, Edward Jones/Bob Scott, Pagosa Lakes Recreation Center, Upper Mesa Ranch and Wolf Creek Ski Company

Bronze Sponsors include Ace Hardware, Aaron's Fitness and Strength Training, Bank of the San Juans, Appraisal Services, CenturyTel, The Club, Colorado Dream Homes, Davis Engineering Services, Elk Meadows River Resort, First Southwest Bank, Jere and Lois Hill, La Plata Electric Association, Log Park Trading Company, Pagosa Springs Golf Club, Piedra Automotive, Rio Grande Golf and Fishing Club, TLC The Lighting Center, Timothy Miller Custom Homes and United Building Centers of Pagosa Springs

Make a date for the "Shake, Rattle and Roll the Dice Casino," Saturday, May 7.

 

County 4-H members plan salute to leaders

By Pamela Bomkamp

Special to The PREVIEW

As our nation celebrates volunteers with "National Volunteer Week," here in Pagosa Springs we would like to recognize our 4-H leaders.

Our club and project leaders give so much more than their time and energy to the Archuleta County 4-H program.

Rachel Carrell, secretary of the Colorado Mountaineer Club, explains it like this: "These people create a sense of common sense and leadership. Leaders are not born, they are grown, and the 4-H volunteers help to grow future leaders. They help to cultivate a sense of confidence that helps children move on to do great things."

The entire 4-H program - national, state and local - could not, would not, exist without the efforts of our 4-H volunteers.

These leaders teach our children more than just parliamentary procedures, how to raise an animal and how to complete inside as well as outdoor projects; they help our youth develop important life skills.

Rachel continues: "They give the kids of Pagosa a chance to become responsible adults. They do so much and should know how greatly appreciated they are."

"Archuleta County's 4-H leaders do make a difference," said Bill Nobles, CSU Extension director. He is proud of our leaders and knows that "without them our program would not be the quality program it is today."

This year's 4-H Leaders are: Robin Ball, Emzy Barker, Robyn Bennett, Sandy Bramwell, Jean Brooks, Sandy Caves, Cheryl Class-Erickson, Mark Crain, Carrie Espinosa, Addi Greer, Becky Gulliams, Cynthia Havens, Dr. Kerry Hoobler-Riek, Lynn Johnson, Kenneth Jones, Alta Lee-Kimble, Charlie King, Justin Krall, Jeff Laydon, Pam Martin, Sabra Miller, Evi Miner, Jan Nanus, William Newell, Bob Newlander, Mary Nickels, Bill Nobles, Mary Ann Page, Doug Purcell, Gwen Ray, Mike Reid, Timothy Schreyer, Lisa Scott, Betty Shahan, Diana Talbot and Brenda Wanket.

The Archuleta County 4-H members have planned a dinner and presentation ceremony Friday at Montezuma's Restaurant in honor of their 4-H leaders.

Members of each 4-H Club were represented in planning invitations, entertainment, table decorations, the menu, award items and presentations. All of this has been done to show their leaders how much they mean to every 4-H member in Archuleta County.

 

Pagosa Lakes Clubhouse approved as emergency disaster care location

By Richard Walter

Staff Writer

In the event of an areawide disaster, where would refugees be housed and cared for?

If all other facilities are full, that site would be the Pagosa Lakes Property Owner's Association Clubhouse.

Voting unanimously April 14, the association board of directors approved a facility agreement with American Red Cross allowing use of the clubhouse to care for disaster victims until the emergency ends.

In answer to a question from director Gerald Smith, the board was told the association would assume all utility costs attendant to the emergency use.

In the lone audience comment of the night, a woman asked the board if it had received any data from the county's road and bridge department regarding road grading and graveling schedules.

Director Fred Ebeling, noting a full-scale investigation of county records regarding road designations and history of development is underway, said "right now road and bridge will not let go of anything."

But, he said, "there has been a lot more progress in the last four months than in the prior two years."

Director David Bohl, association president, said "We should realize that a lot of past assumptions at the county level regarding roads, their designation, and use, were not based on fact.

"We're learning more every day," he said."

Ebeling added the research has now been completed through all records up to the point where data is computer stored.

"When the county and our team get through that level," he said, "we will have a more comprehensive idea of where and what happened, and how it fits into the needs of the community now."

At the same time, the board was told were told staff has initiated an audit of unfinished roads in Highlands and Trails utilizing studies of both association and county records, to determine which roads and what lengths of each, were not built during the Fairfield development phase.

The association holds approximately $263,000 in funds from the Fairfield settlement for completion of those roads when specifics are determined. It appears, at present, fund allocation would be approximately $25.92 per lineal foot;

In other action the board:

- heard director Fred Uehling, treasurer, report $592,000 or 58.7 percent of the total billed in annual dues for the new year had been collected as of March 31;

- based on an appeal of a January fine approved for Whispering Pines, and a DCC appeal hearing finding discrepancies, rescinded affirmation of that fine;

- appointed Arthur Matcham to become a permanent member, instead of an alternate, on the environmental control commission, and named Ray Finney and Bill Pomgrantz to additional two-year terms on the panel;

- heard in the general manager's report that Pagosa Springs Postmaster Jim Fait has presented preliminary data on possible future mailbox considerations for Pagosa Lakes and other areas outside the town, expects to accumulate more data in the near future, and will present that to the board, perhaps by the May meeting;

- learned there has been no reply from Pagosa Area Water and Sanitation District to the association-proposed lakes use and maintenance agreement. The document is being analyzed by PAWS attorneys. Bohl has been designated to sign the pact when returned, if there are no major changes;

- learned more than 200 replies were received in the first 10 days after publication of the Property Owner Involvement and Input Initiative in the spring newsletter. Directors viewed the large early return as indicative of the level of interest most property owners have in their community. A full report will be made at the May meeting.

Archuleta, La Plata county 2003 livestock grazers eligible for aid

A secretarial designation for Archuleta and La Plata counties, along with a 40 percent or greater grazing loss in 2003, has made both counties eligible for the Livestock Assistance Program.

This is a grazing loss program that will pay eligible livestock producers for grazing losses on a per-head basis of eligible livestock such as beef and dairy cattle, sheep, goats, swine and buffalo, beefalo and elk maintained as beef cattle.

Equine animals used commercially or kept by owner for food/fiber will also be eligible.

The livestock producer must have control of the grazing land and possess beneficial interest in eligible livestock that have been owned or leased for at least part of three consecutive months during the disaster period.

Eligible land

- Only non-irrigated acres for grazing are eligible with the following exception: Previously irrigated land that was not irrigated at all in 2003 due to lack of water beyond the producer's control will be eligible;

- Non-irrigated hay residue is eligible based on the normal beginning grazing date of the residue;

- State and federal lands, if either of the following apply: 1) land leased on along-term basis that COC determines that the lessee incurred additional expenses for building stock ponds, wells, fences, etc., or other pasture maintenance; or 2) pasture or grazing land leased for cash or fixed amount for an established grazing period.

Ineligible grazing lands include:

- Acreages enrolled in CRP;

- Irrigated pastures or crops;

- Seeded small grain forage crops;

- Non-irrigated land normally used for hay production cannot be used unless certified as grazing in the given year;

- Grazing land that is leased under any of the following conditions: 1) livestock grazed on a basis of weight gain, cost per head per day or month or an Animal Unit Month-only basis when the lessee incurs no additional expense for pasture maintenance, wells, fences, etc.

Livestock that was sold because of a natural disaster (drought) may be eligible. If, because of the drought, a producer sold eligible livestock that were on grazing land on or after Jan. 31, 2003, the producer will receive compensation for the entire disaster payment period.

Benefits will be based on the number of livestock the producer would have owned if the disaster had not occurred. Livestock sold in the course of routine business will be eligible for benefits up to the date of sale.

Payments will be made after the signup ends and will be based on the smaller value of your feed needs or pasture needs.

Signup is now underway with no deadline date announced.

Call the La Plata-Archuleta County office at (970) 247-9277, Ext. 100 or 103 for an appointment.

Have ready your total number of livestock owned, numbers and dates of any livestock sold when you come into the office.

Local Chatter

Dale Morris epitomizes talent level in community

By Kate Terry

PREVIEW Columnist

It amazes me, and many others, the number of talented people who move to Pagosa Springs and really, it was like this when I came here over 20 years ago. There is something about our town that attracts those individuals interested or involved, or both, in the arts - all phases.

The performances of Disney's "Beauty and the Beast" last week blew people's minds, especially those who did not know about the quality of Pagosa Springs High School performances. We tell them this has been going on for years and oftentimes they say "Wow!," just as Superintendent Duane Noggle said (as reported in last week's SUN) when he saw his first plays in Pagosa Springs. Some of the kids start performing in junior high school and by the time they reach high school are "seasoned" performers.

And now I can tell you that Dale Morris who directed, choreographed and staged "Beauty and the Beast" and, as with all the shows she's helped produce, has been a stage full of smooth professional like, captivating swarms of human motion.

Morris got this "job" when her son Jesse (Gaston in "Beauty and the Beast") suggested that she "come to school and help out with dance steps for a show." That was four years ago when she and her husband Jim and Jesse (who also plays timpani) moved here from Santa Fe.

Morris is from Boston, her background is a college degree in special education and years of experience with community theater, children's and adult.

She has the ability to inspire kids to perform at their best. She says that to do right by the kids, a great show will follow and that what they do is up to them, whether the show is good, great or extraordinary.

And atmosphere in production is very important. The cast works as a family - there are no upstagers. There is no wonder that we have wonderful productions under the guidance of Dale Morris. And there are others to tell you about who help put it all together in future columns.

About town

The United States has more volunteers than any other country in the world. It is one of the things that makes any country great - the most important one, according to some authorities.

Because Sisson Library is being added onto, the Humane Society Thrift Store lower level is housing a mini-library. Consequently, there isn't now the need for many volunteers, but come fall (or whenever) when the work is done, volunteers will be back in full swing.

The volunteer hours at Sisson Library, for a number of years now, has topped 3,000 annually.

Fun on the run

A big corporation hired several cannibals. "You are all part of our team now," said the Human Resources rep during the orientation. "You get all the usual benefits and you can go to the cafeteria for something to eat, but please don't eat any of the other employees."

The cannibals promised they would not.

Four weeks later their boss said, "You're all working very hard, and I'm quite satisfied with you. However, one of our secretaries has disappeared. Do any of you know what happened to her?"

The cannibals all shook their heads no.

After the boss left, the leader of the cannibals said to the others, "Which one of you idiots ate the secretary?"

A hand raised hesitantly, to which the leader of the cannibals continued, "You big dummy! For four weeks we've been eating managers and no one noticed anything, but noooooo, you had to go and eat someone important.

Community Center News

Community rummage sale Friday, Saturday

By Mercy E. Korsgren

PREVIEW Columnist

Our Community Rummage Sale starts tomorrow, 3-6 p.m. and continues Saturday 7:30 a.m.-noon. Plan to come, browse, buy and enjoy the day. The center is sponsoring this event and will be selling doughnuts, sopapillas, Navajo tacos and beverages both hot and cold. At the time of writing, 15 vendors and 20 tables are already in place. It looks like this will be a successful, fun day.

Graduation parties

Call us and reserve your space early. Group parties are welcome and make your event more affordable. Have your party here with access to indoor basketball and volleyball games and don't worry about rain and wind.

Photocopier needed

Our photocopier is on its last leg. We are looking for a community-minded person or group willing to donate a new or used copier that can handle the center's photocopying needs. We only need a small unit and a new one would cost around $500. Your donation is tax-deductible.

Patriotic Sing-Along

This community event will take place 7-9 p.m. Thursday, June 30. The center is inviting music lovers, individuals and groups, to participate in this symbolic and popular evening. Watch for more information.

Post Prom Party

It is coming soon, May 1 from 1 to 5 a.m. Yes, 1 to 5 a.m. The community center, as part of its Teen Center program, is sponsoring this event. Purpose of the party is to keep our youth safe while they have lots of fun. Entertainment will include giant inflatables such as Obstacle Course, Bungee Stretch and Bouncy Boxing; casino-type games; live DJ and American Idol singing contest; a hypnotist, a coffee bar and food. Electronics and cash prizes will be given out during the party. The grand prize will be a laptop computer donated by the Pagosa Springs Board of Realtors and affiliates.

This event is a big undertaking and we would like to invite businesses and individuals to participate and support this project with a tax-deductible contribution. All funds collected will be used solely for this event. Thanks to all who have already sent in their donations. For more information, call Lynn, 731-5386 or Mercy, 264-4152.

Arts and crafts show

Our Memorial Day weekend Art and Crafts Show is set May 28. We need one more vendor to make this event a go. The community center invites all artists and artisans to display their handcrafted items for sale. Space assignments will be made on a first-come, first-served basis. Cost is $35 and $50 for 8x8 and 10x10 spaces respectively, including tables. Proceeds from the event will benefit center programs offered to the community. Call 264-4152, Ext. 21 to reserve your spot.

Building Blocks 4 Health

This is a new program sponsored by the center. It is a support group for all who want to stay fit and be healthy. The group meets 4:30-5:30 p.m. every Thursday and starts with a confidential weighing of each member followed by a 30-minute exercise program. As weather permits, a walk around the block is being planned. The exercise program is followed by a group discussion headed by one of the members. Periodically, the group will have special guest speakers.

There is a membership fee of $5 per month which will be used to help defray cost of materials needed for the program. We are now raising money to purchase a medical scale. Also, there will be a charge of 25 cents per pound gained each week and 10 cents per week per member will be collected for later distribution to the most successful health achiever for the month.

Consider joining today and experience successful Building Blocks 4 Health. Call Mercy, 264-4152 or Kathee Ferris, 264-6209

Previous highlights

The Creeper Jeepers Club of Durango will meet at the center the second Tuesday of each month, 7-8 p.m. Anyone interested in four-wheeling is welcome to join. The club is trying to form a Pagosa chapter. For more information call Don Dodson, 731-3498, or check www.creeperjeepers.org

The Colorado Bureau of Investigation had a two-day class here with our town law enforcement officers in attendance. The class was about processing a crime scene during investigations.

Thanks

Many thanks to Diane and Jim Holloway for donating a computer system. We now have eight computers available for public use. Of course, we would like to thank Becky Herman, our volunteer, for her continued hard work in keeping our computer lab up and running to meet the demands of the community since the library closed.

Activities this week

Today - 8:30-11:30 a.m., high school private tutoring session; 9:15 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Chimney Rock volunteer training; noon-1 p.m., Soup for the Soul - Hospice fund-raising; 4:30 5:30 p.m., Building Blocks 4 Health; 4:30-8:30 p.m., tee-ball; 6 -8 p.m., Anglican Church Fellowship.

Friday - 11:45 a.m.-1 p.m., men's open basketball; 1-3 p.m., 4-H Clover Buds; 1:45-4:45 p.m., Planned Parenthood; 3-6 p.m., community rummage sale;

April 23 - 7:30 a.m.-noon, community rummage sale;

April 24 - 9 a.m. -noon, Church of Christ Sunday service; 9 a.m.-noon, Grace Evangelical Free Church, service; 2-4 p.m., United Pentecostal Church Service.

April 25 - 8:30 -11:30 a.m., high school private tutoring session; 12:30-4 p.m., seniors' bridge club; 3:30-5 p.m., Planned Parenthood.

April 26 - 8 a.m.-5 p.m., Verbal Judo Law Enforcement training; 8:30-11:30 a.m., high school private tutoring session; 10 a.m.-noon, seniors' computer class with Becky; 1-4 p.m., computer tutoring with Becky; 3-6 p.m., Archuleta Economic Development Association meeting; 4:30 -8:30 p.m., tee-ball.

April 27 - 10 a.m.-noon, Pagosa Brat play group; 10 a.m.-3 p.m., Wednesday bridge club; 5-9 p.m., men's recreational basketball playoff; 7-8 p.m., Church of Christ Bible study.

April 28 - 4:30-5:30 p.m., Building Blocks 4 Health; 6:30 -7:30 p.m., girls' softball meeting; 6-8 p.m., Anglican Church Fellowship.

The gym is open Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to noon for walking and open basketball except when reserved for special events. Call 264-4152 for information and to reserve a room.

The center needs your input on other programs and activities you would like to see happening here. If you have ideas, tell us about them.

The center is a non-profit organization under the umbrella of the Pagosa Springs Public Facilities Coalition and managed by the Town of Pagosa Springs. It provides spaces for the Archuleta County Seniors Program, Pagosa Springs Arts Council, Teen Center and other groups and organizations in the community. Rooms are available for rent to anyone or any group on first-come, first-served basis. There is a nominal charge to rent a room and monies collected pay for the utility bills and other operating costs.

Have your party or meeting here. We have rooms for small, mid-size and large groups.

A catering kitchen is also available. Tables, chairs, portable stage, dance floor and audio visual equipment are available, too. The center is at 451 Hot Springs Blvd.

Call 264-4152.

Lost and found

Please check at the front desk if you're missing something that might have been left at the center. We hold lost and found items for a month, then all unclaimed items are donated to the local thrift stores.

Senior News

Spring hat competition a big hit

By Musetta Wollenweber

SUN Columnist

We strutted our stuff in our spring hats April 13 and, boy howdy, there were some doozies!

Third place was awarded to Jack Sherwood who sported a hat with a card with love and spring activities along with a train (a small one!); second place went to Dorothy O'Harra who wore a lovely borrowed itsy bitsy hat she made for her grand doggy: and first place went to Marilyn McPeek who's hat depicted her brains falling out in the form of spring appearing pipe cleaners!

Each winner received a small gift for their creativity. Congratulations. Jeni and John were donned in silk flower headbands until John gave away his hat to Adelina and replaced it with a feather and balloon derby. Sam stylishly wore his most elegant rainbow colored sun hat. Thank you to Dee from the community center for judging our contest.

Bears listening

We are pleased to have Mike Reid here from the Division of Wildlife Friday to talk to us about bears. They are out and moving now, so we need to know how to keep them out of our garbage. Come hear everything you wanted to know about bears in the lounge; OK the bears aren't in the lounge, but the presentation is at 1 p.m.

End-of-life decisions

Melanie Kelley, local attorney, will give a presentation, Advanced Medical Directives, 1 p.m. Wednesday, April 27. She will cover items such as living wills, medical powers of attorney, and other documents a person might want to have as part of their estate planning. In planning your living will, you will have the opportunity to make decisions about your personal, emotional and spiritual needs as well as your medical wishes. You may choose the person you want to make health care decisions for you if you are not able to make them for yourself. Melanie, who has practiced law in Colorado for over 15 years, is donating her time for those who might have questions or need assistance in this area. Please plan to attend.

Bus volunteers needed

The folks riding the bus could use a wee bit of assistance on their shopping days. We are currently looking for a volunteer to help our folks on Tuesdays and another volunteer on Fridays from approximately 12:45 to 3:30 p.m. Volunteers may be asked to carry grocery bags, push a cart, read labels, etc. Please call the Den at 264-2167 for further information.

Birthday celebrations

Celebrate April birthdays with us Friday, the 29th. Not only are you celebrating another year of life, you are receiving a discount on your meal too. If you are 60 years old and older, Archuleta Seniors, Inc. has discounted your meal that day to just $1 for those celebrating a birthday in April.

Come in and have cake.

Senior Prom

You've been looking forward to this and here it is Š

Archuleta Seniors, Inc. is once again sponsoring Senior Prom, no not the high school prom, the "Senior" Prom! The theme the senior class of the high school has chosen this year is "A Kiss From a Rose." If you are in the mood to grab your purdy clothes then do so, or join us in your duds, either way be ready for an afternoon filled with great music courtesy of John Graves and his band and get out those dancing shoes too! Prom is 3-6 p.m. Sunday, May 1, at the high school. Advanced tickets are required and may be purchased at the Den for $5. Included in the ticket price is either a boutonniere or corsage, snacks and a photo. What a fun way to spend May Day and we'll crown the king and queen to make it even more special.

Massage therapist needed

Enhance the life of an older person by providing a healing massage. We are still looking for a volunteer massage therapist. Do you know someone who might be interested in coming in once or twice a month for an hour or so each visit? Our folks really miss that special touch. For further info please call me at 264-2167.

Garden

We have a small garden area that needs your help. We need a number of green thumbs that would like to maintain the garden, plant, etc. At this point we are in the planning stages and need to know what you would like to plant. If you would like to help out in anyway give us a call.

Protect yourself

Consumer tips on moving:

Obtain written estimates: Before moving obtain at least three written estimates. Don't take an estimate over the phone.

Ask about insurance coverage: Ask about the type and extent of liability coverage the mover carries. A mover without adequate coverage for the workers could put you at risk. Consider getting a rider to your homeowner's insurance.

Be careful when packing: If you do your own packing, DO A COMPLETE JOB! Many complaints arise after consumers unpack and find damaged goods. Carry valuables and important documents with you.

Research the company: Find out how long the mover has been in business and research it's past successes and failures. Call your Better Business Bureau and the Federal Trade Commission to learn whether any complaints or lawsuits are pending.

- from AARP Elder Watch

Activities at a glance

Friday, April 22 - Qi Gong 10 a.m.; A talk that "bears" listening to, courtesy of the Division of Wildlife, 1 p.m.

Monday, April 25 - Medicare and Drug Card counseling, 11 a.m.-1 p.m.; Bridge 4 Fun, 1 p.m. all levels welcome.

Tuesday, April 26 - Yoga in Motion, 9:30 a.m.; basic computer instruction, 10:30 a.m.

Wednesday, April 27 - Canasta, all levels welcome 1 p.m.

Friday, April 29 - Celebrate April birthdays at noon.

Veteran's Corner

Time away: some work, some play

By Andy Fautheree

PREVIEW Columnist

I will be away from the office today and next week, April 27 through May 2. Some work, some play. I will be attending a Colorado Veteran's Service Officer training conference in Denver this week.

I look forward to assisting all of our veterans and their needs upon my return.

Call for vehicle

You can call Kathi Creech in the Archuleta County Commissioners' office (264-8300) if you need to schedule the VAHC transportation vehicle during my absence. If it is for a transportation date that occurs in the future, please call me after I return.

All matters of VA claims and applications, benefits, etc. can await my return.

Kiwanis meeting

I felt honored last week to speak before the Pagosa Spring Kiwanis Club about local veteran issues. I want to thank the Kiwanis club members for their invitation and interest in our veterans.

While researching for some notes to cover in this luncheon program I was very excited to find quite an increase in the amount of money being paid by the Department of Veterans Affairs for veteran benefits in our county.

$2.2 Million

As of September 2004 Archuleta County is receiving $2,226,000 in benefit expenditure for veterans here. This is a significant increase over the earliest information available, which is from 2001. In that year the total VA expenditures for our county was $947,252.

I came here early in 2001 as your Veterans Service Officer. Accurate figures before this date are not available from the VA.

The 2004 VA expenditure figures include $1,230,000 for compensation and pension claims, $39,000 for vocational rehabilitation, and $81,000 for the insurance and indemnification payments.

New federal dollars

This $2.2-plus million dollars of federal money is pouring into and directly affects the economy of Archuleta County because of our veteran population. And this is not just a one-time payment; it is recurring, year after year.

A nice bonus for our veterans and our economy. I've always said it is good business to do business with the VA!

Share-A-Ride

Don't forget to call or stop by my office with your VA health care appointments for the Share-A-Ride program. Help a fellow veteran who may be going in the same direction to the same VA facility. Give me a call if you can provide transportation or need transportation. I will keep a calendar of who is going where to coordinate this important program.

Durango VA clinic

The Durango VA Outpatient Clinic is located at 400 South Camino Del Rio, Suite G, Durango, CO 81301 (next to Big 5 Sports). Phone number is 247-2214. Albuquerque VAMC phone number is (800) 465-8262.

More information

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 afautheree@archuletacounty.org. The office is open 8 to 4 Monday through Thursday, Friday by appointment. Bring your DD Form 214 (Discharge) for registration with the county, application for VA program and for filing in the VSO office.

Library News

New book details pottery process

By Peggy Bergon

PREVIEW Columnist

We have received a wonderful donation from Glenn Raby, "Messages from the High Desert: the Art, Archaeology and Renaissance of Mesa Verde Pottery," by Clint Swink.

Nearly 1,000 years ago, when the Mesa Verdeans mysteriously abandoned the high Colorado Plateau desert of the American Southwest, they took with them their ceramic production knowledge while leaving behind a legacy of enchanting pottery.

When Clint Swink began replicating pottery in 1987, little was known about the actual production process of this lost art form.

In this book, Swink provides step-by-step instruction to teach the process of replication of Mesa Verdean pottery. Swink provides this definition of replication: "To reproduce as closely as possible to the original in all aspects including the use of only materials, tools and techniques originally available."

The book is filled with black and white photographs showing the process.

Potters will be inspired by the photographs of the original artwork in the form of 158 artifacts from the Mesa Verde Culture.

This book is available for checkout. Swink is from the Durango area. Locals may have attended one of his authentic replication workshops at Chimney Rock Archeological Area.

Dragons, daring deeds

Children of all ages are invited to join in with the fun of the library summer reading program!

There will be dragons, knights, castles and fairytales, crafts, art and games, Tuesday and Friday mornings at 10:30 at the Town Park soccer field, June 7 through July 8.

Pre-registration for the program has begun at the mini library.

More donations

Thanks to Charlene Baumgardner, Lavender Booth, and Susan Kanyur for donating books.

 

Arts Line

High school art exhibit opens today at PSAC gallery

By Kayla Douglass

PREVIEW Columnist

The PSAC exhibit season will open April 21 with our annual Pagosa Springs High School Exhibit.

This year's exhibit is titled "Chimera." Works from 10 students in Art 3 and 4 will be on display through May 4. The exhibit provides a venue for our youth to exhibit their creative talents and is always well received by the community. Charla Ellis, high school art teacher, will coordinate the exhibit.

Our opening reception is today, April 21, 5-7 p.m. in the gallery at Town Park. Stop by and view the artwork and vote for your favorite for the People's Choice Award.

Gallery hours for this show are 1-5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.

Thanks to volunteers

The week of April 18 is designated Week of the Volunteer.

The Pagosa Springs Arts Council is mainly a volunteer organization. Volunteers, docents, help us at the gallery April 21 through October. Volunteers are indispensable in our summer events, such as the Home and Garden Tour.

On behalf of the Pagosa Springs Arts Council Board of Directors, I offer a very special thanks to our Pagosa Springs Arts Council volunteers. We appreciate you and your support of our operations.

If you are interested in volunteering for our upcoming season, either at the gallery or at one or more of our events, contact the gallery, 264-5020 or e-mail us at psac@centurtytel.net.

Randall Davis class

Mark your calendar for Saturday, April 30. Randall teaches a drawing class one Saturday a month. It's usually the third Saturday of the month but, for April, Randall needed to reschedule it to last Saturday of the month.

Drawing with Randall Davis begins at 9 a.m. and usually finishes up around 3 p.m. at the community center. The subject this month will be perspective and the composition of physical structures in relation to their surrounding landscape.

This class is a precursor to going outdoors, beginning in May. If you have never attended one of Randall's classes, it's a treat to see what you can produce in a day under his guidance.

All you need to bring is a large sketchpad, a few drawing pencils - preferably a mid-range No. 2 or 3, and No. 6 bold lead and hard lead, a ruler, eraser and an attitude to enjoy the day. Bring your own sack lunch too, since you'll be having so much fun you won't want to take the time away from drawing to go get one.

It's best to make a reservation through PSAC, 264-5020. Space allowing, walk-ins are always welcome

Join the council

PSAC is an organization that helps ensure a flourishing and diverse community by enriching lives through the arts.

Privileges of membership include involvement in membership activities, involvement in the community, discount on PSAC events and workshops, recognition in Artsline and listings in PSAC Artist Guide and PSAC Business Guide.

Workshops and exhibits are sponsored by PSAC to benefit the arts community.

Effective April 1 our membership rates change. The new rates are: Youth - $10; Individual Senior - $20; Regular - $25; Family Senior - $25; Family Regular - $35; Business - $75; Patron - $250; Benefactor - $500; Director - $1,000; Guarantor - $2,500 and up.

PSAC sponsored events include:

- gallery exhibits, May-October;

- art workshops and classes, community center;

- PSAC annual membership meeting;

- annual Pagosa Country Calendar;

- annual juried art exhibit;

- annual photo contest;

- annual Home and Garden Tour;

- annual Gallery Tour;

- periodic artist studio tour;

- watercolor club;

- photo club;

- Summer Youth Art Camp;

- arts and craft tent, Four Corners Folk Festival.

PSAC divisions include Pagosa Pretenders and San Juan Dance Festival

We value our membership and appreciate their support. If you are reading this column and would like to be a member, call 264-5020 or e-mail psac@centurytel.net.

Pine River Library

The Pine River Library in Bayfield welcomes artists of all ages to display their artwork in the building.

All mediums are welcome. If you wish to display your artwork, call Chrissy Moiseve at 884-2222. She will be happy to fax you an display request form. Artwork is displayed for two months. Artwork to be displayed the months of May and June must be received no later than April 29. Artwork displayed may be available for sale, and while the library staff is not involved in the sale of artwork, they will refer queries about the purchase to the artist. There is no fee charged to artists. This project encourages the artistic and cultural interest of the community by providing a showcase for local artists.

Performing arts camp

Creede Repertory Theatre will host its first overnight Performing Arts Resident Camp Aug. 7-13. The camp is open to all students in grades seven through 12 who have an interest in the performing arts.

The camp is open to all students in grades seven through 12. The main focus of PARC is to strengthen the students' overall theatre skills through intensive training in stage work, vocal performance, scene study and movement. Students do not need any prior theatre experience; however, they should be interested in the performing arts.

The second goal of PARC is to give students an opportunity to develop interests in other areas of art and creativity. Students will be able to choose elective classes in painting, jewelry making, photography and music. Students will also have the opportunity to explore the nature that surrounds Creede with activities such as horseback riding and river rafting.

All PARC classes will take place at the Creede Repertory Theatre and will be taught by CRT theatre professionals. Elective classes will take place at their respective locations in downtown Creede. Students will be supervised 24 hours a day by camp counselors, CRT staff members, or elective teachers.

Cost for the camp is $500 per student including: all theatre and elective classes, housing for six nights, all meals, adventure activities, admission to three main stage CRT shows, and transportation to and from the cabin. A limited number of scholarships will be available to students with financial needs.

For information on PARC or a registration packet, contact Julie Merrill at (719) 658-2540.

PSAC Calendar

All PSAC classes and workshops are held in the community center arts and craft space, unless otherwise noted.

April 21 - Pagosa Springs High School Art Exhibit opening reception, 5-7 p.m., PSAC Gallery at Town Park.

April 30 - Drawing with Randall Davis, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Cost: $35.

May 5 - Intermediate watercolor painting with Betty Slade, 9 a.m., $35 for PSAC members, $40 for nonmembers.

May 6 - Beginner and above oil painting with Betty Slade, 9 a.m., $40 PSAC members, $45 nonmembers, $35 current students.

May 11 - Photography club, 5:30 p.m., community center.

May 12 and 13 - Oil painting, "Nuts and Bolts & More," with Betty Slade, continuing work in progress, learning more painting techniques and beginning new paintings. Cost: $80 per student for PSAC members, $90 for nonmembers.

June 23 - 2005 PSAC annual meeting.

July 24 - PSAC Home and Garden Tour.

PSAC supports all art activities in Pagosa. For inclusion in Arts line, send information to PSAC: e-mail psac@centurytel.net. We would love to hear from you regarding suggestions for Arts line. Events in surrounding areas will be included when deemed of interest to our readers.

Food for Thought

Finally ... time to face the lentils

By Karl Isberg

PREVIEW Columnist

Lentils.

Never liked them.

Lentils, along with patchouli oil, prompted the recall of things I would rather suppress.

Most notably, hippies.

Yes, I came of age in the '60s and, being in the business in my late teens of producing very loud music, I surfed the counter-cultural waves of the time. Nearly every night.

I indulged some of the trends of the time and I've been told by people who knew me back then that I enjoyed myself. Perhaps way too much.

Thank goodness someone remembers.

I did not, on the other hand, enjoy hippies. I hated incense, herbal teas and lava lamps, disliked the sitar, had no use for free clinics or communes, couldn't stand the Grateful Dead or Birkenstocks, rarely uttered the phrases "far out" and "wow, man."

The peace and love thing was anathema to me. Weak stuff, that hippie thing. I believed, and still believe, there's much to be said for regular mayhem, for the cleansing and creative power of conflict. I liked collisions, disorder. Still do. While hippies were reading "Siddartha," I was reading "Thus Spake Zarathustra" (when I was able to read). We existed in parallel universes.

That's not to say I couldn't and didn't rummage around in the hippie closet. After all, there were female hippies and Š

So, as part of the chase (which, in most cases, was not much of a challenge), as I negotiated contracts in the hippie habitat, I was exposed to patchouli oil and lentils. The two things became inextricably linked.

That darned oil was everywhere - the most profoundly stinky "I haven't washed in weeks" deodorant known to the species. You could put patchouli oil on a decomposing corpse and the scent of the oil would win the day. And the next day, for that matter. You knew hippies were in the vicinity when you smelled the oil, and you smelled it when they were several blocks away. It gave you time to hide.

And that's why I had trouble with lentils: constant conjunction. Any time some lithe and hirsute sprite entered the room, tie-dye skirt aswirl, bearing a bowl of lentils, all I could smell and taste was patchouli oil.

For example, I had a torrid, short-lived relationship with a patchouli-drenched woman named Shrinking Violet, an Armenian vixen straight from the Haight. Foodwise, Violet specialized in unseasoned lentils and brown rice. Ate the crud at nearly every meal. I had reasons to endure the dietary torture - extraordinarily good reasons - but the affair was doomed. Had it not been for Violet's German shepherd, Steppenwolf, I might have stayed with her longer than three weeks, but the combination of bland, slushy lentils, patchouli and frequent attacks by a beast realizing its genetic potential weakened my resolve. About the same time, I enjoyed a brief fling with a Wiccan from Boston named Claudette. When she wasn't busy chanting, igniting exotic bird feathers and doing odd things with candles, she too produced heaping portions of slushy, bland lentils. With pronounced patchouli overtones.

Years later, as I developed my Indian food jones, I had trouble with dal due to my aversion to lentils. The Pavlovian response was so strong, I pushed the dal aside. For years, I did my best to avoid the vegetable.

While patchouli disappeared from my environment, lentils and all the associations did not.

Every now and then they showed up at home when Kathy insisted on cooking her "special" vegetarian chili. She did this on the rare occasion when I was not able to shop and prepare the evening meal, or when I was sick and could not work in the kitchen.

She whipped up a credible dish, but I couldn't get past the lentils. There was plenty of other stuff in the mix, chaff and the like, but the mere idea of lentils ruined the show. I took a bite, I heard sitar music, I smelled patchouli oil, a dog growled, I began to worry the cops were about the break down the front door. Bad mojo, those lentils.

Recently, however, I rethought the matter.

What changed my mind? Dinner on the terrace at George's at the Cove, in La Jolla.

It isn't a particularly nice evening, weatherwise; clouds rolled in during the late afternoon and there is a chill in the air. Fortunately, there are large heaters on the terrace and Kathy and I can see the ocean ripping onto the beach below.

I order what amounts to a cioppino - a seafood stew, with tomato. This night, the stew includes chunks of two firm-fleshed fish (one is monkfish, the other Š eh, who knows), clams, mussels, shrimps, pieces of lobster, crab and squid. The broth is fortified with clam juice, white wine; it's garlicky and touched with a bit of basil, bay leaf. The ciopinno comes with a large slab of toasted ciabatta, liberally slathered with a compound butter and glopped with just the right amount of melted, tangy cheese. I dip the bread in the broth.

I'm happy.

Kathy orders salmon. I make a few snotty remarks, e.g. wondering what kind of culinary kindergartner orders salmon when she is but a stone's throw from the Southern California shore. Kathy snarls and forges ahead: Not just an ordinary grilled or pan roasted fillet, but one topped with a mustard horseradish crust and served atop Š dear lord, help me Š lentils.

She reads aloud from the menu, an evil glint in her eye. "Mmmm. Lentils. Just like my vegetarian chili. You love my vegetarian chili, don't you?"

This is not a genuine question. Like a prisoner undergoing interrogation, I nod my affirmation, avoid eye contact.

When the main course arrives, Kathy leans over, smiles and asks:

"Want a bite?"

I focus my attention on the cioppino.

"Nope."

"You sure?"

"Yep."

"It's great. You oughta try it."

"No thanks."

"Really, this is incredibly tasty, Karl. These lentils are remarkable with this salmon. Have a bite."

And so it goes, until I realize there's no escaping the offer. We will sit on that terrace until I taste the lentils.

I take a bite: a bit of the salmon, still moist beneath its crust, a wad of lentils.

She is right.

The salmon is perfectly cooked, the crust providing a tart and crunchy complement to the flesh.

And the lentils?

Hmmm. The lentils. Somewhat meaty. Cooked with enough aromatics to lend a notable voice to the ensemble. The mix is saucy, the taste ramified, interesting, a nice foundation for the water-born protein.

Hmmm. Maybe, I've been wrong, I think: This is a pretty neat side dish, absent the odor of patchouli - a decent slurry on which to place something precious. Who's afraid of hippies, after all? Much less, the memory of hippies? I decide to experiment with the Beast Master's favorite legume.

I wait until Kathy takes a trip to Denver to visit relatives; my work will remain secret until I analyze the results.

I use red lentils (they mush up real well and turn yellow as they cook). It seems to me that, depending on the stock used to cook lentils, they can be adapted, with varying additives, to serve as a suitable accompaniment to pieces of all sorts of previously wiggling and wandering things, from land or sea.

I decide to cook salmon to go with the lentils - complete with a mustardy crust. It pays to plagiarize.

I hack up a mirepoix - onion, carrot, celery - and I add finely diced green bell pepper. I sweat the mirepoix in olive oil in the pan I will use to cook the lentils. When the veggies are soft, I toss in two cloves of garlic, minced, a bit of salt and pepper, some thyme. I flip in a cup of rinsed lentils, two cups of chicken stock, a teaspoon of chicken demi-glace and a splash of dry, white wine. I bring the mess to a boil then cover, reduce the heat to low and simmer for about 40 minutes - until the stock is nearly gone and the lentils lose their composure and begin to disintegrate.

The fish is easy. I rinse and dry a fillet of wild salmon and season the flesh side. I preheat the oven to 400 and oil a baking sheet. I put the fillet on the baking sheet, skin side down and slather it with a significant coating of whole grain Dijon mustard. On top of the mustard, I place a layer of crumbs - panko bread crumbs (they are flaky and stay crispier than regular crumbs) mixed with olive oil, chopped parsley, thyme, a teensy bit of grated Parmesan and a smidge of salt.

It takes about 14 minutes for the fish to cook. I use a spatula and lift the cooked fillet oh-so-carefully from the skin and place it on a bed of lentil slush.

It's great.

Not a hint of patchouli, no odor of burning bird feathers in the air. The mnemonic chain is broken.

I'm free.

Maybe, now, I'll slowly introduce lentils into my diet. And, who knows, maybe I can finally read "Siddartha."

 

Extension Viewpoints

Bindweed mite releases available soon

By Bill Nobles

PREVIEW Columnist

Today - Quilting Project meeting, 4 p.m.; Cake Decorating Project meeting, 5 p.m.; Veterinary Science Project meeting at San Juan Veterinary clinic, 5:30 p.m.

Friday - Cloverbuds at community center 1:30-3 p.m.; Entomology Project meeting, 2 p.m.

April 25 - Shooting Sports — Group B, Ski & Bow Rack, 4 p.m.; Sportsfishing Project meeting, 4:30 p.m.

April 26 - Outdoor Cooking Project at Community United Methodist church, 4 p.m.; Community Wildfire Protection Forum, 6 p.m.

April 28 - Cake Decorating Project meeting, 5 p.m.

Check out all posted 4-H project and club meeting dates and community meetings at www.archuleta.colostate.edu/calendar.htm.

You can manage field bindweed with the bindweed mite.

The Archuleta County Extension office will receive 200 releases of bindweed mite at $15 per release. Each release will treat 25 acres, and is 75-percent effective in controlling field bindweed after two years.

These releases will be delivered the end of May or June. Releases will be limited to 10 per person and must be pre-paid. If you are interested in purchasing the bindweed mites, contact the office at 264-5931.

Field bindweed (Convovulus arvensis) is one of the most widespread and difficult to manage weeds growing throughout the United States. The vining plant produces an extensive root system that stores enough nutrients to fuel extensive growth. The plant thrives in the arid western states and will grow on many sites where other plants cannot exist. Control with herbicides is difficult. Bindweed can be successfully managed on some sites with fall applications of glyphosate containing herbicides. Control in localities with desirable vegetation, inaccessible areas, as well as many agricultural systems is nearly impossible with herbicides.

The bindweed mite, Aceria malherbae, is a microscopic eriophyid mite imported from southern Europe as a biological control agent for field bindweed. The bindweed mite feeds only on field bindweed and closely related wild morning glories. It does not damage other plant species, and it requires bindweed to survive. Bindweed mite feeding causes the formation of gall-like growth of plant leaves. Leaves of infested plants become thickened, and have a "fuzzy" texture. In heavily infested plants, the shoots are misshapen and growth is severely stunted. Newly emerged leaves on recently infested plants appear folded with thickened midribs. The thickened texture and fuzzy appearance are good diagnostic characteristics to identify bindweed mite presence.

Bindweed mites have the potential to aid in suppression or control of field bindweed in many arid regions, and under many plant management regimes. It can be useful in wild land settings, pastures, roadsides, disturbed areas, landscape plantings, and other areas. The best results will be obtained with active management by mowing the bindweed, which moves the mites around and stimulates new growth for the mites to feed on. Bindweed mites survive better in drier settings. Their impact in sprinkler irrigated settings, especially lawns, will probably be less than in nonirrigated sites.

Bindweed mites spend the winter on the underground buds of bindweed rhizomes. The protected overwintering site allows them to survive extreme winter conditions, and they have successfully over-wintered in the harsh environments of Canada and Montana. Excessive moisture appears to be one of the environmental factors that limits its establishment. Attempts at establishing them have not been successful in areas with significant rainfall and high humidity. Bindweed mites can survive extended drought periods by actively moving to underground buds when plant tops die down. Initial establishment of bindweed mites has been most successful on the drier sites, as long as the bindweed is actively growing when the release is made.

Bindweed mites are available from collections of infested plant material. It is best to release mites in the cooler part of the day to maximize their survival. The infested plants should be placed in direct contact with the bindweed that is to be infested. It should be either tucked under the plants or twisted up with the bindweed vines to keep it in place and from blowing away. Newly infested galls (folded leaves) should be apparent within a week or so after spring releases. In many cases, establishment may take a full growing season. Do not disturb the release site for a few weeks, then mow the area (if feasible) to distribute the mites and stimulate new bindweed growth. When galls are easily found, they can be harvested and spread to new areas. Success in managing field bindweed with bindweed mites is highly dependent on your expectations and long-term commitment. If you expect the bindweed to disappear shortly after releasing the mites, you will be disappointed. The initial impact will be a reduction of growth and limited flowering and seed production in infested plants. It will take a year or more for infested plants to die. Control of bindweed over a large area can take years: be patient, mow, move mites manually and you will increase your chances of success.

Seed potatoes

Hurry and get your seed potatoes for planting.

The Extension office is taking orders for two kinds of seed potatoes: the Sangre (red potato) and the Yukon Gold (white potato). Both species are 40 cents per pound. Those of you who are just starting out and are experimenting, it is our suggestion that you order two to three pounds of each species instead of ordering a whole lot of them. This way you can experiment and see if you like them and then order more next year. When orders arrive in at the Extension office each person will be contacted to pick up their order. If you are interested in ordering seed potatoes call 264-2388, e-mail archuleta@coop.ext.colostate.edu or stop by the Extension office.

Pagosa Lakes News

Rotary's $600 million effort key in eradicating polio

By Ming Steen

SUN Columnist

Tuesday, April 12, marked the 50th anniversary of the Salk polio vaccine. Poliomyelitis, also known as infantile paralysis, used to be one of childhood's most feared diseases.

A few years after Dr. Jonas Salk announced his vaccine on April 12, 1955, nearly every child in the U.S. was protected. Today, polio has disappeared from the Americas, Europe and the Western Pacific, and is nearly gone from the rest of the world.

A too-little-known part of this feat is the role played by Rotary, which 20 years ago adopted the goal of wiping out the disease. Rotary understood that medical breakthroughs are worthless unless people aren't afraid to immunize their children and efficient delivery systems exist to get the vaccine to them. And so, it mobilized its members in 30,100 clubs in 166 countries to make it happen.

In 1998, as part of a Rotary-sponsored group study exchange to India, I visited numerous medical aid projects designed to provide aid to tribal areas. My heart was torn by the grimness of their lives and the overwhelming need for help.

I was impressed and moved by the efforts of the Rotarians in India to reach out and meet those needs. During their national polio immunization day, thousands of Rotarians were mobilized to schools, train stations, bus stations, markets and remote villages to administer the oral polio vaccine. I was assigned to help a group of ladies, a mobile polio vaccine machine, that went from car to car in train stations to deliver drops to young children and babies.

During that same trip I came close to despair as I surveyed the endless line of "crawlers" - children crippled by polio - who had shown up for free corrective surgery provided by local and American Rotarian physicians. The five-day clinic wasn't enough time to help every crawler. Those who leave without seeing a physician will return again next year and the year after until they get the help needed. Hand-in-hand with so much misery is an abundance of hope.

In 1985, when Rotary launched its eradication program, there were an estimated 350,000 new cases of polio in 125 countries. Last year, 1,263 cases were reported. More than a million Rotary members have volunteered their time or donated money to immunize two billion children in 122 countries. In 1988, Rotary money and its example were the catalyst for a global eradication drive joined in by the World Health Organization, UNICEF and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.

In 2000, Rotary teamed up with the United Nations Foundation to raise $100 million in private money for the program. By the time the world is certified as polio-free (probably in 2008) Rotary will have contributed $600 million to its eradication effort.

A recent article in The Wall Street Journal calls "Rotary's effort the most successful private health-care initiative ever ... and the work of Rotary and the Gates Foundation, both private groups, ... more effective than any government in promoting vaccines to save lives."

Since July 1, 2004 (the beginning of each Rotary club year) our local Rotary club members have made contributions to Rotary International of $16,000. By June 30, the goal of $18,500 will be reached. Rotary International uses these funds from all its clubs worldwide to fund projects such as Polio Plus.

Local Rotarians have been working the community for support of Casino Royale, one of the club's major fund-raisers. All proceeds from Casino Royale go back into the local community in the form of scholarships for local college-bound seniors, mini-grants for enhancing education in our local schools, 9Health Fair, the coat drive for the needy and many, many more projects too numerous to list in this column.

The Rotary Club's goal for this year's Casino Royale is to raise $25,000. Many generous local businesses, through their donations in cash sponsorship or in-kind gift, will make the event a success.

The Casino Royale will be held 6 p.m. Saturday, May 7, at Montezuma's Vineyards. Tickets are available from any Rotarian or local banks.

Come shake, rattle and roll the dice.

Births

No births this week

Obituaries

Elizabeth Hoehn

Elizabeth Hoehn died Saturday, April 16, 2005, at Mercy Hospital in Durango. She was 99 years old.

Elizabeth was born in Budapest, Hungary, Sept. 17, 1905, to Carroll and Theresa Olah. Elizabeth and her family came to the United States when she was 5 years old. Her mother died of tuberculosis soon after arriving in the states. Elizabeth and her sister were raised in Milwaukee, Wis., where she met Fred Hoehn. They were married May 14, 1926.

During World War II, Elizabeth and Fred moved to Long Beach, Calif., where her husband worked as an electrical planner at the Long Beach Naval Shipyards until he retired in 1965. They then sold their home, bought a trailer, and spent the next 20 years traveling the United States.

Elizabeth had been a resident of the Pine Ridge Extended Care Facility since November 2001, after moving from Rocklin, Calif., to Pagosa Springs with her son, John and daughter-in-law Teri.

Elizabeth was preceded in death by her husband, Fred, and eldest son, Fred Jr. Two sons, Harold, of Palmdale, Calif., and John, of Pagosa Springs and his wife, Teri, survive her.

No services are planned and the family asks that any donations be made to a charity of choice.

 

Pamellia Yaw

Pamellia Lee Yaw, 53, died Saturday, April 16, 2005, at Mercy Medical Center in Durango, Colorado. Ms. Yaw was born December 14, 1951, in Des Moines, Iowa, the daughter of Harry and Virginia Yaw.

She was a New Mexico resident for 25 years before moving to Bayfield. Ms. Yaw was a kind and devoted Christian. Her recreational time was spent with flowers and gardening.

She was preceded in death by her first husband, Peter Lynn Knight; her son, Matthew Lynn Knight; and a sister. Deborah Jean Conrad.

She is survived by her father Harry; her mother, Virginia; sisters Victoria Kurykendall and Margaret Yaw, of Des Moines, Iowa, and several aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews.

A graveside service was held today at Rosa Cemetery, Arboles. Father Myron Darmour, Mercy Medical Center Chaplain, officiated.

 

Verna Sorrels

Verna Sorrels, 76, passed away April 15, 2005, at Presbyterian Hospital in Albuquerque, N.M. Verna was born May 18, 1928.

She is survived by her husband of 59 years, Melvin of Los Lunas, N.M.; children Mike Sorrels of Las Vegas, N.M., Jim Sorrels of Germantown, Tenn., Ron Sorrels of Ottawa, Kan., and Nancy Schutz of Pagosa Springs; grandchildren Shane, Cole, Jamie, Matthew, Daniel, and Michael Sorrels, and Alan and Adam Schutz; and six great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by Keri Sorrels.

A family service was held April 16 in Albuquerque and a celebration of Verna's life will be held this summer in Pagosa Springs.

Business News
Chamber News

Visitors get a full tour of Pagosa

By Mary Jo Coulehan

SUN Columnist

Boy there are lots of events going on this time of year. Perhaps, since typically the town has been slow, everyone is planning events and workshops. I know we are on that thought process here at the Chamber.

Incoming visitors

On Wednesday our town had an influx of tour ambassadors from the Dinosaur Area Visitor Center. Almost every year a visitor center group from one of the nine centers around Colorado comes to our area to better familiarize themselves with the sites and amenities that this area has to offer. They stayed overnight, soaked in our hot springs, ate at several of our restaurants, toured the sites, then departed for another part of Colorado.

We were very proud to show the group around town and show off our lodging facilities, restaurants, sites and shops. I would like to take this time to thank the businesses that have made this FAM (familiarization) trip possible with either a full or partial donation of their services: Hart's Rocky Mountain Retreat with lodging, Dionigi's and Victoria's Parlor with food services, The Springs Resort with soaking passes, the Wildlife Park, the Harman Museum, Chimney Rock for their tours and guides, and the Choke Cherry with gift baskets. We cannot tell you how appreciative we are for your help in "wining and dining" these visitors. We put our best foot forward. I took the visitors on a brief shopping tour this morning, trying to hit as many areas as I could.

We will also have a group of travel writers visiting our area May 22. This group was arranged by the state of Colorado's travel organization. We believe most of this trip is planned as well; however, if you are interested in participating with this FAM trip or when another one comes to town, give me a call and I will put you on "the list." We certainly don't want to abuse anyone's generosity. Just keep in mind, you are showing off your business and its services. Nothing like word of mouth!

Photogs, diplomats

I'm going to refer everyone to the press release in The PREVIEW with the call for photographers and their work by the Chamber of Commerce. We are looking to put together a media sheet and would like to get a great visual representation of Pagosa. Anyone may participate and a fee will be paid for the use of a photo in this project and in the future. Please give me a call at 264-2360 with any questions.

Also, don't forget that Diplomat training will be happening Tuesday, May 3, Wednesday, May 4, and Friday, May 6. If you are interested in volunteering here at the Visitor Center, please give Morna a call. Even if you are a "seasoned" Diplomat, you will need to attend one of the workshops. We are looking ahead to a busy summer and we appreciate the time people donate to the Visitor Center weekdays and weekends.

Workshops aplenty

Now is the time to get in your business schooling. The Chamber of Commerce and the Education Center have lots in store for you.

"How to Start, Grow and Successfully Manage Your Own Small Business," is a seminar hosted by Archuleta County Education Center with seasoned lecturer Rich Lindblad.

This lecture series begins today and continues every Thursday night through May 5. Cost is $50 plus a $5 annual registration fee. The classes will be 6-9 p.m. in the Education Center. Lindblad's goal is to create a foundation of understanding that will help you decide if starting a new business - or acquiring an existing business - is right for you. These classes will give you the chance to examine the many steps required in all phases of business formation. For more information, give the Education Center a call at 264-2835.

F.I.S.H.

Also tonight, 1st Southwest Bank in conjunction with the Chamber of Commerce is again sponsoring the "Fresh Ideas Start Here" program. This typically sold-out workshop will take a little different twist this year. Where usually the classes span a course of three weeks, all the classes this time will be offered on one night.

Three topics will be discussed: "David & Goliath - competing with the Big Box Retailer Stores"; "10," in which you learn how to avoid the ten common small business mistakes; and "The Best Bank for Your Buck" - how to get your banker to bank on you! Reservations are required for this workshop due to limited seating. You may obtain a slot by calling Sherry Waner from 1st Southwest at 264-2251 or the Chamber at 264-2360. Tickets are $29, food and beverages will be served. The class will be held at The Pagosa Lodge. David Broyles, lecturer, president and CEO of 1st Southwest will be teaching the class.

Solar power

The Education Center continues its workshop schedule with a one-day class on solar electricity 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday in the center at Lewis and 4th Streets. David Conrad of Millennium Renewables will teach the basics of solar electricity and how to design a solar powered system. The class is free; however, there is a $5 annual registration fee. Again, if you have questions, give the folks at the Education Center a call at 264-2835.

E-Commerce

At 7:30 a.m. Tuesday, April 26, the Chamber will cosponsor a workshop with Region 9 Economic Development Center and the Fort Lewis College Small Business Development Center. This workshop will focus on one of the most talked about advertising techniques these days: e-commerce. Which is exactly what? If you place your business on the Internet or want to know how you can do a better job getting your Web site noticed, then this is the class for you. It is taught by Ed Preston, owner and president of Clean Canyons and Forests. Among other credentials he has consistently placed his own Web site: southwest-vacation-travel.net in the top one or two spots on major search engines such as Google and MSN where competition runs anywhere from 1 to 20 million matches. The class will be held at The Pagosa Lodge with registration and continental breakfast starting 7:30 a.m. The class begins at 8 and runs until about 10:30. Limited seating is available and the cost of the workshop is $15 for members and $20 for nonmembers. To reserve a spot, call the Chamber at 264-2360 now before all the spaces are taken.

Wildfire

And although not really a class, we'll throw this seminar into the workshop category. On Tuesday , April 26, 6 to 9 p.m. at the Archuleta County Fairgrounds, there will be a Wildfire Protection Forum. There will be slides, videos, handouts and fire experts at the forum. Sponsored by the Firewise Council Ambassadors of Aspen Springs, this free workshop will help you get ready for fire season. The symposium will give you tips on how to help firefighters gain access, create defensible space through fire mitigation measures, and how you can become informed about what you need to do. Don't wait until it is too late. Become informed and attend this forum.

"Once Upon a Wolf"

Enough of the business stuff!

Let's move onto the fun part of our community efforts! Tonight through Saturday night the Music Boosters will present "Once Upon a Wolf." This "fractured fairy tales" type of madcap comedy will be entertainment for the whole family. The production will be held at the Parish Hall of the Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church on Lewis Street. The play will begin at 7:30 each night with tickets for non-reserved seating will $12 for adults, $10 for seniors over 60, and $6 for students and children. You may also purchase them at the door.

Music in the Mountains

By the time this article is printed, chances are we will be sold out of tickets for the full festival orchestra performance on July 30. We do still have tickets for the other two performances: July 22 with violinist Vadim Gluzman and August 5 with Antonio Pampa-Baldi and his piano mastery. Don't wait too long, for we are at about 50 percent sold for these concerts. For ticket information or to purchase tickets, call us at the Chamber at 264-2360.

Gallery opens

Summer is definitely upon us when the Arts Council Gallery in Town Park opens for the season. Home for the Pagosa Springs Arts Council (PSAC) exhibits, this facility will host the annual high school exhibit. Coordinated by Charla Ellis, high school art teacher, this yearly event gives students an opportunity to display their talents to the public. The exhibit and reception will take place 5-7 p.m. today. The exhibit will continue until April 30. The gallery is open from 1 to 5 p.m. Come on out and support the talented young people of our community where in the future you might say, "I knew them when."

Rummage sale

On your marks, you garage sale shoppers! The community center is sponsoring a community rummage sale Friday and Saturday. For $15 per table, you can acquire a space to sell your wares or you can donate to the community center and they will sell your treasures for you. Come on out 3-6 p.m. Friday and 7:30 a.m.-noon Saturday. For more information you can contact the folks at the community center at 264-4152. Get your sneakers on and let the garage sale season begin.

Habitat luncheon

You still have time to sponsor a table or get your invitation to the annual Habitat for Humanity Sponsorship Luncheon scheduled noon Friday, April 29, in the community center. Meet the recipients of houses 14 and 15 (can you believe that we have accomplished so much in this community?), see how you might be able to work off some stress pounding nails, enjoy some fabulous food from Wrap It Up Catering, and enjoy the fancy footwork of the "Habit-Tappers." Call Chris Hostetter for more information on this event and for your invitation at 731-6900.

April SunDowner

Slather on the sunscreen, dig out that swimsuit, put on your flipflops and surf on over to this month's SunDowner at the Humane Society Thrift Store Wednesday, April 27. Surf on waves of chocolate at the chocolate auction, enjoy beach-type food and of course enjoy the usual beverages. The SunDowner will start at 5 p.m. and the evening will culminate with the fabulous chocolate auction with sweets from caterers, restaurants, and local confectioners. The admission price is $5 and you do not need to be a Chamber member to attend. Unfortunately, no room for sand volleyball.

Soup for the Soul

I would like to close out this week's events section by reminding everyone to go out and eat - more specifically, eat soup. During the week of April 24-30, Hospice of Mercy will be sponsoring "Soup for the Soul" as their fund-raiser this year. To kick off the event, starting around 11:30 a.m. today in the senior center dining room, two guest chefs will each be highlighting one of their specialty soups. Russ Apodaca from Victoria's Parlor will be serving up his popular New England style Clam Chowder and Gene Coatney from JJ's Upstream will satisfy a few taste buds by offering his French onion soup. There is no admission price, but a donation would certainly be accepted. Here is the beauty of this event. Just go into your favorite restaurant that serves soup and is participating in the event and order a bowl of soup. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of the soup will then be donated to Hospice of Mercy. If you have ever needed the services of hospice care for someone in your family, then I'm sure you will go out and eat at least one bowl of soup a day. The people who work with Hospice of Mercy and other similar hospice units are a special and gifted group of people whose talents are seriously underrated.

Serving Pagosa Springs since 1989, Hospice of Mercy continues to care for the terminally ill of our community offering assistance, comfort and compassion. Please go out and enjoy a bowl of soup and support this organization and all its fine work. For more information on this event or Hospice of Mercy, please contact Don Strait at 731-3427.

Fair Royalty Pageant

On Saturday and Sunday 14 young ladies will vie for three positions as the Archuleta County Fair Royalty. The fair pageant is open to the public Sunday when the girls will be judged on their public appearance and speaking skills. The pageant will be held in the high school auditorium starting at 5 p.m. Come out and cheer on your favorite candidate.

New members

First in line this week is Adworks with Kanaka Perea and Jacque Aragon. Adworks provides full service advertising and marketing concepts and design. They know that clients, no matter what the size, want and need results. They provide big ideas with big results. Pleasant and efficient, give these ladies a call at 264-4Ads (4237).

You can get some printing done with Rainbow Printing. Here is another business from Durango offering services to Pagosans. Rainbow Printing offers fast, full-color printing using digital technology and specializes in smaller quantities (100, 250, 500) of business cards, rack/poster cards or flyers. They also print large format posters. For more information on their full line of printing services give Dan McCarthy a call at 259-1223.

Renewals

Coming back on board this week is Strickland Construction with Ed Strickland; The Schield-Leavitt Insurance Agency; J.R. Ford returns representing Pagosa Land Company; Dr. William Thornell with Pagosa Dental; Mary Ann Page and Page's Leaf Custom Catering; Isabel Webster and The Flying Burrito; Healing Water Spa and Salon at the Springs Resort; San Juan Mountains Association; Archuleta Economic Development Association; and Archuleta County Airport/Stevens Field, and facility newcomer Rob Russ.

Thank you again for putting up with such a lengthy column. I hope our community keeps informed through this communication medium and puts the information given out to good use. Until next week when I will disseminate a lot more infoŠ

Biz Briefs

No Biz Briefs this week

Biz Beat

SNIPS

Cindy Carothers, back row, left, and Becky Ball have moved SNIPS to a new location at 27B Talisman Drive, Suite 2. Making the move with them are stylists Rachel Lowe, front left, and Susan Kay, as well as Shanna McMillan, who is not pictured.

With a combined 88 years experience, the SNIPS team offers full service including barbering, dimensional hair color, perms, facial waxing and cuts for men, women and children.

SNIPS also provides full nail care with acrylics, fiberglass, gel nail and natural nail service. Pedicures are also available. Tanning services include tanning bed and airbrush tanning. SNIPS provides customers with Bed Head, Catwalk and Paul Mitchell retail products.

Call SNIPS at 731-6500.

Cards of Thanks

Daffodil success

Daffodil Days 2005 was a complete success. The Archuleta County Unit of the American Cancer Society ordered and sold 9,500 beautiful symbols of hope during the celebration.

Our goal each year is to exceed the previous year's sales by 5 percent. This year our increase was a little over 90 per cent. Thank you Archuleta County residents for your generous support of this most worthy fund-raiser.

Our media support was terrific! Thank you Pagosa Springs SUN, KWUF Radio, Pagosa.com and Ad Works. The Chamber of Commerce was invaluable - thank you Mary Jo, Morna and Doug. A huge thank you to City Market for your cooler space and patience. Ace Hardware and Ponderosa Hardware again donated delivery buckets and direct sales locations. Thank you to Brea Thompson and Leslie Baughman, Fair Royalty and the Key Club for all your assistance.

This event was especially successful thanks to my volunteers who took orders, delivered bouquets and manned sales locations. These wonderful folks are Heather Anderson, Anne Booth, Peggy Carrai, Nancy Crause, Peggy Case, Johanna Elliott, Anne Grad, Cindy and Ron Gustafson, Joanne and Jim Haliday, Kathy Hamilton, Liz Jernigan, Robyn Struch, Jordyn Scott, Laura Stevens, Ming Steen, Melinda Schnarre, Mercy Korsgren and Lynn Shirk. You are truly angels, especially this year in the face of change and challenge.

Thank you for joining the "flower power" movement in the battle against cancer.

Suzan Gray

Donors cited

San Juan Gobblers would like to thank the following businesses and individuals for their generous donations to the annual NWTF Banquet: AAA Propane, Agape Gifts, All About You Day Spa, Antler Shed, Art Halloman, Bank of Colorado, Bank of the San Juans, Basin Coop (Ampride), Chaparral Leather, Citizens Bank, City Market No. 438, City Market No. 445, Conoco (Eddie Vita), Diana Kenyon, Downside Moose, Fairfield Activities, Freddy Rivas, Goodman's Department Store, Home Again, Hot Springs, JR Keller and H.S. Strut, Liberty Theatre, Log Park, Malt Shoppe, Mesa Propane, Mount-N-Man Taxidermy, P.R.E.C.O. Plumbing, Pagosa Candy Company, Pagosa Shell Station, Pagosa SUN, Plaid Pony, Ponderosa Do-It-Best, Rainbow Gifts, Sears, Shanghai Restaurant, Ski and Bow Rack, Slices of Nature, Snips, Switchback, The Hairtender, The Source for Pagosa Real Estate, The Tile Store, Touchstone Gifts, Victoria's Reign, Wayne Carlton, Wells Fargo, Wilderness Journeys, Wolf Tracks Coffee Co., Wrap It Up. We would also like to thank everyone who attended the banquet and made it so successful and enjoyable!

Weddings

No Weddings this week

Engagement

No Engagements this week

Anniversary

Charles and Sylvia Pargin celebrate 70th anniversary

An open house will be held April 23 from 12:30- 5:30 p.m. at the Cedar Hill School House, Cedar Hill, N.M., nine miles north of Aztec for Charles and Sylvia Pargin of Cedar Hill and Kevin and Christi Burge, formally of Cedar Hill, now of Brighton, Colo.

The occasion will celebrate 70 years of marriage for Charles and Sylvia Pargin and 25 years for Kevin and Christi - married on Christi's grandparents' 45th wedding anniversary in 1980.

Charles and Sylvia were married in Pagosa Springs, April 21, 1935 - the Pargins being one of Pagosa Country's pioneer families. Everyone is welcome to help celebrate this occasion.

Locals

No locals this week

Sports Page

Hoffman's heroics pace 9-4 win over Bloomfield

By Richard Walter

Staff Writer

You might call it the Josh Hoffman show - and you'd have plenty of data to back up the choice.

Or, you might call it the day the 2005 Pagosa Springs Pirate baseball team came of age, playing up to that word - team.

Again, you'd have plenty of facts to support that way of describing the team's 9-4 victory over Bloomfield Monday on the Bobcat's home field.

The Pirates even played as a team early in the game when they committed six errors in the first two innings, kicking, missing or throwing the ball in unusual directions.

Bloomfield, loathe to look a gift horse in the mouth, accepted the Pirate largesse to build a 4-0 lead on just three hits by the end of the second inning.

The Pirates, meanwhile, got a single from Hoffman but left him on base in the first and went meekly with a soft liner, a ground ball to second and a strikeout in their half of the second.

But you could sense a change in the Pirate third.

Levi Gill reached on an error by the Bobcat shortstop and the team perked up noticeably when he stole second. Travis Richey singled to left to drive him in, then advanced when the outfielder misplayed the ball. Marcus Rivas followed with a long triple to the wall in right center to score another run.

And then Hoffman stepped to the plate again. He worked Bobcat hurler Gabe Candelaria to a 2-2 count and then got the letter high fastball he'd been looking for.

The result was a 370-plus foot home run over the wall in left center and Pagosa had tied the contest at 4-4. Jakob Reding popped to third for the second out but Casey Hart ripped a double to center and the Pirates were looking for more. Karl Hujus tried to deliver but his long drive to right was hauled down.

Still, the Pirates had battled back and Travis Marshall looked strong on the mound though he still had reason to suspect his teammates of ball-handling treason that put him in the early hole.

The Bobcats made a bid to comeback in the bottom of the frame. Nate Ewing lined to first, but Kyle Newton doubled to center and Richard Casaus walked.

Coach Charlie Gallegos called on Levi Gill to stop the rally, bringing him in from short to pitch, putting Hoffman at short and moving Marshall to center field.

Gill got Destri Gallegos on a fielder's choice ball hit to Hoffman and fanned Luke Valdez to end the mild threat.

But the Pirates weren't done.

After Marshall grounded to third to open the fourth Gill was hit by a pitch and Gallegos drew a walk. Richey singled to right to drive in one run and kept going on an outfield error allowing Gallegos to score. Richey was a little to risky, however, and was picked off third. Rivas walked to keep the rally alive, but Hoffman popped to second.

Pitcher Shawn Mascarena opened Bloomfield's fourth with a single to center. But Gill struck out Shane Helleckson for the first out.

Enter Hoffman, again and again.

Candelaria ripped a sure single up the middle but Hoffman, seemingly from nowhere, dived flat out to knock the ball down and make the throw to nab Candelaria at first.

Then, as if to prove it was no mistake, Hoffman ranged deep behind second to grab Cody Cummins' bid for a hit and gun him down, too.

A pop fly and two ground balls to second quickly ended the Pirate fifth. Bloomfield got a walk to Ewing and single from Newton. After Casaus flied to right, Gallegos hit into a fielder's choice, Ewing out at second, and Gallegos was gunned down by Reding attempting to steal.

Pagosa's sixth again was quick. Marshall fanned, Gill bounced to the pitcher, Gallegos drew a walk, but Richey struck out.

Gill fanned Shay Wooten batting for Valdez, got Mascarena on a fly to right, and then surrendered a pair of infield singles to Helleckson and Candelaria.

Coach Gallegos decided he'd gotten all he could from Gill on the hill and made the move for a reliever at this point - Hoffman, of course.

His do-everything guy fired one pitch and got Cody Cummins on a an easy fly to right to end the threat.

The Pirates still weren't done, however.

Rivas popped to first to open the seventh but Hoffman beat out an infield hit, his third hit of the game. Bloomfield brought the 6-4 freshman Cummins in to pitch to Reding.

The big Pirate catcher hit a bullet at the third baseman who recovered the loose ball but threw late to first. Hart followed with a single to right center to score one run. Hujus singled to right to plate another and then the Hoffman name appeared again.

This time, however, it was the sophomore brother, John, who delivered an RBI single and Pagosa had a 9-4 lead. Gill and Gallegos both struck out, but it was anticlimactic.

Gallegos went to the bullpen to get his number one starter, Randy Molnar, for the Bobcat seventh.

That put all the players moved earlier back in their regular positions, with John Hoffman replacing Richey in left.

Jeremy Martinez bounced back to Molnar on the first pitch for one out. But Ewing got all of the second pitch, driving it toward the left field corner.

John Hoffman, playing the sun and in full stride, tracked it down at the wall for the catch and Molnar, after going 3-2 on Newton, struck him out and Pagosa had a welcome victory, their fifth in a row.

And Josh Hoffman was being touted as the bus driver on the way home. He'd already done everything else.

For Pagosa the line score reads nine runs on 10 hits. The Pirates committed seven errors, only one after the second. Richey had three RBIs, Hoffman two, and Marshall, Hujus, Hart and Rivas one each.

Bloomfield had four runs on eight hits, no runs after the second inning. The Bobcats committed five errors.

The victory was a boon to Coach Gallegos who challenged the team to keep its composure after the early fielding lapses.

"We needed this one for momentum going into Bayfield," he said.

Pagosa travels to the Wolverine den Saturday for an Intermountain league doubleheader against the Bayfield squad. Game time for the first matchup is 11 a.m.

Bayfield defeated Bloomfield twice this season but had to come from behind both times in the late innings to do so.

Bayfield was 14-1 at press time, including a 7-1 victory over Pagosa in the Bloomfield Invitational championship game. Bayfield suffered its first loss of the season Tuesday, falling to Salida. Pagosa is 9-4, including a win over Salida.

Men's Golf League play opens May 11

By Ross Hartfield

Special to The SUN

The 2005 Men's Golf League season will open 1 p.m. Wednesday, May 11.

Play will be at the same time every Wednesday. Everyone is welcome but you will need a Pagosa handicap and must join the Pagosa Men's Golf Club ($25).

Twilight golf fees will be offered to all participants. Contact Alan Schutz at 731-4755 for any additional information.

An informational meeting will follow the round of golf on the first day and a schedule of future events will be available then.

Format for May 11 action will be individual gross and net.

Girls softball league has a few open spots for 16/14 and under

With practice already underway, there still are a few openings for the 16/14 and under group in the new Southwest Colorado ASA Girls Softball League.

Practices are 5:30 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday in Town Park.

All of April is open for registration of girls for the 8-12 team and a special softball clinic will be offered April 30 for all interested in the game.

For more information, call 903-8877.

Pirates sweep Centauri twin-bill, 15-5 and 11-6

By Richard Walter

Staff Writer

Good pitching, power at the plate, fine defense (with a few key lapses) and stellar play by reserves keyed a doubleheader baseball sweep for Pagosa Saturday at Centauri High School in La Jara.

The game, originally scheduled for Golden Peaks Stadium, was moved when the Pagosa field was deemed unplayable.

Centauri pitchers might have wished it had not been moved as Pirate bats went to work early.

Centauri, with Pagosa the home team on their field, opened a one-run lead in the first. Pirate pitcher Randy Molnar got Mike Abeyta on strikes and Matt Lucero on a bouncer back to the mound. Tyler Rogers, Jeff Ruybal and Trevor Thomas all singled, Thomas getting the run batted in. Molnar settled down and fanned Ernie Abeta for the third out.

Pagosa sent nine batters to the plate in the bottom of the inning, scoring six runs with the aid of two Centauri errors, two hit batsmen, a wild pitch and a home run.

Travis Richey led off reaching on an error at shortstop, was sacrificed to second on a perfect bunt single by Levi Gill and moved to third when Karl Hujus grounded into a fielder's choice, Gill out at second. Catcher Jake Reding, batting in the cleanup spot, fanned for the second Pagosa out, but Centauri pitcher David Malouff suddenly lost his radar and hit both Casey Hart and Marcus Rivas to force in a run.

Travis Marshall singled for two more runs, advancing on an error in center field.

Then Matt Gallegos cleared the sacks with a home run over the fence in left. Pitcher Randy Molnar struck out but Pagosa had a quick 6-0 lead.

Justin Gift opened Centauri's second with a single to right but, despite a wild pitch by Molnar, the Falcons could not push him around. Dan Martinez and Malouff both went down on strikes, Mike Abeyta walked and Lucero flied to left.

The Pirates added a pair of runs in the second with three more batters being hit by pitches, a sacrifice fly and a two-run single by Marshall.

Richey popped out to start the parade but both Gill and Hujus were hit. They worked a double steal to put runners on second and third and Reding capitalized on the chance with a sacrifice fly to left scoring Gill. Then Hart was hit by Malouff, and Rivas singled for another run before Marshall struck out to end the frame.

Both teams had nearly silent third innings.

Rogers opened with a bouncer back to Molnar, Gift reached on an error at third but Martinez fanned and Mike Abeyta popped out to end a Centauri mini-threat.

Pagosa got a single to left by Gallegos but Molnar popped to second, Richey popped to short and Gill struck out.

Despite a throwing error by Reding which allowed a baserunner on a strikeout, Centauri failed in the fourth as two hitters struck out and Mike Abeyta popped to first.

Pagosa added two in the bottom of the inning. Hujus grounded back to the pitcher but Reding put the next pitch from Malouff into U.S. Route 285 over the left field fence. Hart doubled to left and Rivas coaxed a walk. Marshall walked to load the bags and Gallegos drew another walk to get the run home before Molnar grounded into a 4-6-3 double play.

The Falcons answered with a pair of their own in the fifth, aided by three Pagosa errors.

Lucero singled to center to open the frame and moved up as Rogers bounced back to Molnar. Ruybal reached on an error at third but Molnar got Thomas on a pop-up and Pagosa appeared set to escape.

But, both runners scored on the next batter when the third baseman and left fielder each erred on a ground ball before Molnar got Gift on a fly to left to end the inning.

Richey led off the Pagosa fifth drawing a walk and stole second. Gill struck out but Hujus reached on an error. Richey was picked off third for the second out but Reding drew a walk. Hart ended the threat with a fly to left.

Centauri got a pair in the top of the sixth, again after two were out.

Bryan Atencio, batting for Martinez, struck out and Malouff grounded to first. Make Abeyta walked and Lucero reached on an error in right, scoring one. Rogers singled to drive in another before Ruybal struck out.

Pagosa came up in the sixth with a 10-5 lead and determined to put the game away.

Rivas drew a walk and stole second. Marshall singled and then he and Rivas worked a double steal to put runners on second and third. Gallegos walked to load the sacks and Richey walked, forcing in a run. Gill and Hujus both fanned with Matt Lucero on in relief for Malouff. But Reding and Hart each drew walks each forcing in a run, and Rivas, the tenth Pirate to bat in the inning singled for the game-winner on the 10-run lead rule.

Molnar had 10 strikeouts in the game, a career high for him in Pagosa after moving here from Florida as a junior. Pagosa had 15 runs on 10 hits; Centauri five runs on six hits.

Game 2

Centauri got a single by Rogers after two were out in the first, but Ruybal flied to left against Pirate starter Travis Marshall.

The Pirates then took a quick 3-0 lead, again capitalizing on Falcon gratuities.

Richey reached on an error at second, stole second and moved to third when Gill beat out an infield hit. Richey was picked off third by Lucero, but Hart drew a walk and Reding, the designated hitter in the second game, doubled to left for a pair and advanced on a passed ball. Josh Hoffman reached on a fielder's choice, scoring Reding, before Rivas grounded to first.

Centauri got two hits in the second but again could not score. Thomas flied to right, Lucero singled to center, but was picked off first by Marshall. Greg Shawcroft reached on a swinging bunt but was left on when Atencio flied to center.

Pagosa got one more in the bottom of the frame. Gallegos fanned but reached when the catcher dropped the ball. Cody Bahn laid down a perfect bunt but Richey was caught going too far around the bag at third. Hujus struck out but Richey bunted for a single. A combination of a stolen base and a wild pitch allowed Bahn to score but Richey died at third when Gill fanned.

Centauri again got a pair of hits in the third but again was unable to score.

Ernie Abeta popped to first but Ramon Espinoza singled to left. Gift reached on an infield single but was out short to second when Rogers grounded into a fielder's choice. Rogers then was picked off second by catcher Rivas for the third out.

Pagosa, too, went mildly in the third, Hart reaching on an error then out when Reding hit into a fielder's choice. Josh Hoffman bounced out to first and Rivas to short.

Again, Centauri was unable to score in the fourth despite a leadoff hit from Ruybal. He and Thomas were erased when the latter hit into a short-second-first double play. After Lucero reached on an error at third, Shawcroft flied to center.

The Pirates hiked the lead to 7-0 with three in the fourth. Gallegos singled to right and stole second. Bahn struck out but Hujus walked. Richey reached on a bunt single and two runs scored when Lucero through wild trying to pick him off at first. Gill struck out but Hart walked and Marshall doubled in his own cause, to score Richey before Hoffman struck out.

Centauri's fifth opened with Atencio striking out. Ernie Abeyta doubled to left but Espinoza grounded to short and Gift back to the pitcher.

Pagosa answered with another pair beginning with an infield single by Rivas. Gallegos followed with a single to left. Bahn struck out, but Hujus delivered one run with a single to right. Gallegos scored while Richey was being thrown out at first on a bunt. Gill grounded to second, and Pagosa had a 9-0 lead.

Centauri was not ready to go down without a fight.

Rogers singled to center and Ruybal doubled to left for one run as Marshall obviously tired. Thomas singled to drive in Ruybal and Adam Trujillo was called to the mound in relief for Pagosa.

He gave up a single to Lucero, but got Shawcroft to hit into a double play and fanned Atencio to end the uprising.

Pagosa's sixth opened with Hart beating out an infield single and Reding singling to left to put runners on first and third. Hoffman drove in one with a sacrifice fly to right. Rivas was hit by a pitch but Gallegos struck out. Cody Bahn delivered the second run with a ringing single to right center before Hujus bounced back to the pitcher.

Pagosa led 11-2 with Centauri coming up in the seventh, Trujillo still on the mound.

He became his own worst enemy, hitting the first batter with his first pitch. Espinoza reached on an error and stole second. Gift was hit by Trujillo with Espinosa on the move. Trujillo wild-pitched him home and then Rogers pounded his next pitch over the fence in left center driving in three.

Coach Charlie Gallegos again went to the mound, this time summoning Josh Hoffman to close out the uprising.

He got Ruybal on a fly to left, and Thomas popped to short. Lucero kept it alive momentarily with a double to right but Hoffman bore down to fan Shawcroft and the game was over, an 11-6 Pagosa win.

The Pirates go to league-leading Bayfield for a doubleheader starting 11 a.m. Saturday.

Pirates fare well at Bayfield, run at Durango Saturday

By Karl Isberg

Staff Writer

It was a fine day for the Pirates.

Weatherwise, and winwise.

Saturday's roster for the Pine River Invitational track meet at Bayfield included 14 girls' teams and 17 teams on the boys' side.

Pagosa girls finished in second place, behind 3A Gunnison and 5A Durango. The boys' team was third, behind Durango and the winner, Gunnison.

Not only were team scores satisfying to athletes and their coaches, the meet served as an official state qualifying event and two Pirates posted times that will send them automatically to the state 3A competition in Pueblo May 20.

Emilie Schur posted two state qualifying times. In the 1600, Schur took second place with a time of 5 minutes, 26 seconds (state 3A time, 5:31). She won the 3200 in 12:23, beating the state qualifying time of 12:26.

Liza Kelley also gave herself a guaranteed trip to the state meet in triple jump. The Pirate junior leaped 33 feet, six inches to take first place. The state qualifying distance is 33-5.

Other first-place finishes in individual girls' events were logged by Mia Caprioli in the 100-meter dash with a time of 13:54 seconds, Kim Fulmer (1:02 in the 400 ) and Janna Henry (17:24 in the 100 hurdles). First place went to the girls' 4x800 relay team of Bri Scott, Jessica Lynch, Jen Shearston and Schur. The team won the race with a time of 10:26.

The boys' 4x100 relay team of Corbin Mellette, Jared Kinkead, Manuel Madrid and Paul Armijo won the event with a time of 45:35. The 4x800 relay team also finished first. That team included Gunnar Gill, Daren Hockett, Otis Rand and Travis Furman. They ran the race in 8:44.

Several Pirates took second place in individual boys' events: Kinkead in the 100 (11:44), Rand in the 400 (53:26) and Craig Schutz in discus (a throw of 130 feet). The boys' 4x400 relay team also took second place with a time of 3:39.

Second place in girls' events went to Scott with a 2:32 in the 800; Schur with a 5:26 in the 1600 ; and the 4x100 relay team of Caprioli, Fulmer, Henry and Lindsey Mackey ( a time of 54:08).

Third-place finishers among the boys were Casey Schutz in the triple jump (40-7), Madrid in the 300 hurdles (44:19), Caleb Ormonde with a leap of 5-8 in the high jump, Hockett with a 2:09 in the 800, and the 4x200 relay team of Madrid, Armijo, Rand and Kinkead (1:34).

The team of Fulmer, Lynch, Shearston and Katie Ehardt finished third in the girls' 4x400 relay with a time of 4:23.

"We had some state qualifiers come out of this meet," said Coach Connie O'Donnell, "and we had others very close to qualifying, including all our relay teams. We were happy with that."

While the qualifiers pleased the coaching staff, other performances stood out as well.

"We had a lot of athletes get personal bests, and that's great," said O'Donnell. "It's important to beat your previous best performance and we had a lot of those - a lot of happy kids. A lot of kids close to school records."

Next up for the Pirates is a 10-team meet at Durango High School, also a state qualifier.

"The Durango meet will be small," said the coach. "We could go compete against more and bigger schools at Bloomfield, but we wouldn't have the chance to qualify there."

The meet in Durango is Saturday, with field events beginning at 9:30 a.m.

 

Lightning delay precedes Pirate soccer storm in 10-0 Center whitewash

By Richard Walter

Staff Writer

Sometimes the good things are worth waiting for.

To wit, a 55-minute lightning and rain delay Friday preceded a one-hour Pagosa soccer offensive explosion that dealt Center its second loss of the day at Golden Peaks Stadium.

Because of the vagaries of spring sports scheduling, the Vikings had played a "home" game at 1 p.m., losing 4-0 to visiting Ridgway.

The storm began just nine minutes before the scheduled 4 p.m. start for Pagosa and Center and, by Colorado High School Activities Association rule, the playing area had to be vacated until no lightning had been seen for 30 minutes.

The delay was no concern for the Pirate offense. They took the opening touch, had two midfield passes, and just 21 seconds into the game had a 1-0 lead. It came on a looping lead over the defense from Brittany Corcoran to Jennifer Hilsabeck who promptly launched what would be a hat trick performance on the day - one of two for the Pirates.

Center was unable to clear the zone and before the clouds cleared, keeper Maria Bolaños had to make a stop on freshman Grace Smith's bid for her first goal and then got a bit of luck when Emmy Smith's drive caromed off the cross bar.

But the Pirate offense was not to be denied. The team's and Hilsabeck's second goal came at 3:59 when the junior wing scored off a perfect crossing lead from Reinhardt.

Just 55 seconds later, Corcoran stole a Center outlet pass and dribbled unimpeded around two defenders and scored unassisted to Bolaños lower right.

Hilsabeck's first bid for a three-goal day died when her shot off her own steal at the 12 went wide left. Lexi Johnson, another of Coach Lindsey Kurt-Mason's cadre of up and coming freshmen, was stopped on a shot off the left wing before the fourth Pagosa goal at 10:16, a blast by Iris Frye off a drop lead from Kailey Smith.

Not every Pagosa shot went in as evidenced by the ensuing several possessions. Stephanie Erickson's bid hit just outside the left post; Frye's rebound shot was wide left, Hilsabeck nubbed a lead from Kailey to end another chance for the hat trick; Erickson was wide right on a perfect drop from Reinhardt; Hilsabeck hit the cross bar from 15 yards and Frye's rebound was wide right; Reinhardt was stopped on a breakaway and Hilsabeck again was wide on a lead from Frye; Hilsabeck was stopped by Bolaños, Reinhardt wide right and then stopped on the rebound of her own effort before hitting the crossbar on another rebound; and finally, Corcoran stopped right in front of the net.

Finally, at 38:27, goal number five for Pagosa was a thing of beauty, Reinhardt scoring an a fake right lead and left-foot cross from Frye who had two defenders down when she released the pass.

As the half ran down, Frye was stopped on a breakaway.

The second half was more of the same with Allison Laverty stopped twice for Pagosa and Reinhardt once.

Pirate keeper Erin Gabel, who never touched the ball in the first half, made her first save of the game at 43:40, stopping a 20-yarder from Center's Mayra Villagomez.

Just 36 seconds later, however, Pagosa's lead went to 6-0 with Corcoran scoring unassisted.

Frye was stopped and Reinhardt wide left on the next possession and Hilsabeck again hit a post.

At 59:23, however, Frye found Reinhardt on a give-go-and-give play right up the middle and Pagosa led 7-0 and began pulling one player at a time off the field to even the odds.

It did not work for Center.

At 60:46 Hilsabeck captured a rebound off an Erickson shot, deked two defenders out of the way and blasted one past Bolaños for her first ever hat trick and an 8-0 Pagosa lead. Another player left the field for the Pirates, now playing 9 on 11.

Johnson was stopped and Reinhardt was wide right on a long lead from Kailey Smith. The latter, however, became an offensive mover from her sweeper position. Her pass to Reinhardt was chipped to Johnson and her cross found the defender turned attacker wide open for score number 9.

Another Pirate pulled from the field and the game lasted just over two more minutes before the tenth Pagosa score produced the mercy ruling at 70 minutes flat.

It, again, involved the freshman Johnson. This time she faked a shot from the left wing and dropped a back cross to Reinhardt in the middle for the Pirates' second hat trick of the day.

Pagosa's scheduled game Tuesday at Ignacio, a change from an earlier scheduled game here, has been moved again. It will be played in Ignacio at 4 p.m. Thursday. The following day, Pagosa will host Ridgway in a 2 p.m. contest at Golden Peaks.

Summary

Scoring, 00:21, P-Hilsabeck, A- Corcoran; 3:59, P-Hilsabeck, A-Reinhardt; 4:54, P-Corcoran; 10:16, P-Frye; 38:27, P-Reinhardt, A-Frye; 44:26, P-Corcoran; 59:23, P-Reinhardt, A-Frye; 60:46, P-Hilsabeck; 57:17, Kailey Smith, A-Johnson; 70:00, P-Reinhardt, A-Johnson. Shots on goal: P-24, C-4; Saves, C-Bolaños, 10, P-Gabel, 2. No penalties.

Gabel stops an amazing 30 shots but Pirates lose 5-0

By Richard Walter

Staff Writer

How do you find encouragement when your team has just lost 5-0 on its home field?

If you're Pirate soccer coach Lindsey Kurt-Mason, you might find encouragement in the facts:

- three players, including two starters, were missing as the team began warming up and a fourth player, also a starter, suffered an apparent concussion in warm-ups and was unavailable;

- the defeat came at the hands - or feet, if you prefer - of the Class 4A Montezuma-Cortez Panthers who had defeated the Pirates 10-0 in the season opener in Cortez;

- your sophomore keeper, Erin Gabel, has just put on an amazing display, recording 30 saves in the contest with a variety of acrobatic moves that had even Cortez coaches amazed.

Perhaps most impressive in her array of moves was the sequence just over four and a half minutes into the contest.

With Cortez in a seven-girl attack, Gabel stopped a drive to her left, the rebound and a header rebound but could not get to the fourth shot of the sequence by Jessi Love-Nichols for the game's first score at 4:31.

Midfield defensive problems for Pagosa - failure to react to lane breaks and allowing attackers behind them - plagued the team throughout the first half.

Love-Nichols' sister, Jamie, hit the crossbar with a breakaway shot after another Gabel save, but the visitors to Pagosa's Golden Peaks Stadium went up 2-0 at 9:53 with Maddie Stephens scoring unassisted from the left wing with no defenders in her path.

Less than two minutes later, at 11:21, the score went to 3-0 Cortez when Breezy Obletz scored unassisted on a high looper which bounced high over Gabel's head.

Pagosa's first scoring chance came three minutes later when Laurel Reinhardt and Iris Frye worked a crisscross give-and-go to perfection. Reinhardt's shot was blocked and Frye's rebound header stopped by Panther keeper Caity Rowell.

After misses by each of the Love-Nichols sisters, Pagosa launched another attack. Reinhardt was stopped on a direct kick from the left wing and Jennifer Hilsabeck's rebound attempt was hauled in by Rowell.

The score went to 4-0 at 23:40, again the Love-Nichols sisters providing the offense, Jessi scoring on an assist from Jamie.

Eight more saves by Gabel, giving her 12 in the first half, wound down the clock to the mid-game break.

The story of the second half was to be Gabel, Gabel and more Gabel, with a lone break for the fifth Cortez score and Pagosa struggling to organize offense.

The young keeper gave notice early that she was a moving wall, stopping consecutive shots by Jamie Love-Nichols and Stephens on the same possession.

After Gina Francini hit the crossbar on a Panther shot, Pirate defender Emmy Smith had a great save on the rebound after Gabel slipped down.

Two more saves by Gabel and a long outlet kick opened a scoring opportunity for Pagosa, but Frye's shot from 12 yards out was flagged down.

Three more Gabel saves led to another Pirate attack. Reinhardt, working the middle and around three defenders, found Hilsabeck on a wing break by Rowell stopped the shot.

The Love-Nichols sisters each were stopped by Gabel.

But finally, at 68:41, the only score of the second half came by Jamie Love-Nichols, unassisted on a left-wing breakaway.

The balance of the game featured seven more saves by Gabel, a save, three blocks and three takeaways by Pirate sweeper Kailey Smith, and outstanding midfield defense by Cortez.

Missing from the action at the beginning were senior midfielder Caitlyn Jewell (with a neck injury) and Allison Laverty and Chelsea Taylor, both involved in other IML competitions in band and fine arts.

Injured prior to the game when she took a shot to the head on a kick during an offense-on-defense drill, was sophomore starter Alaina Garman.

The loss ended a four-game winning streak for Pagosa, with Center coming to town the following day for a Southwest Mountain League contest.

Pagosa Springs Recreation

What should you give a child?

By Myles Gabel

SUN Correspondent

Looking for a present for your child?

What should you give a child?

A souped up car, a hunting gun, A flashy tie, a sporty hat,

Or cash to buy such things as that?

Don't give them gifts that will decay

Give them what lasts, "Give them a day."

The gift a child will not forget and one that you will not regret

Would be a day that's all their own,

A child with their parent, all day, alone.

Don't give them gifts that will decay

Give them what lasts, "Give them a day."

With ball and bat, head for the park -

For baseball fun until it's dark.

Give them that which none other can,

Companionship with their "Old Lady or Old Man."

Don't give them gifts that will decay,

Give them what lasts, "Give them a day."

- Anonymous

Baseball sign-ups end

Sign-ups for our 6-8 coach pitch, 9-10 Mustang, 11-12 Bronco and 13-14 Pony baseball leagues began March 21 and now have ended.

The teams have been put together and players will be receiving a call from their coach announcing first practice sessions.

Assessment set

Baseball assessment day for all 9- and 10 year-olds signed up for youth baseball will be 10 a.m. Saturday at the Pagosa Springs High School baseball-softball complex. Assessment will cover fly balls, ground balls, throwing and batting.

Adult soccer

Adult soccer is back. Anyone interested in playing coed soccer, please meet at the soccer field adjacent to the football field at Pagosa Springs High School 6 p.m. Tuesday, May 3. Be suited out and ready to play. For more information, call 264-4151, Ext. 232.

Tee-ball

All tee-ball games are now being played in Town Park. Please check the back of the yellow schedules to determine the times of your child's games. If you have any questions concerning scheduling call the Sports Hotline at 264-6658.

Adult softball

Adult softball is right around the corner. Start putting your teams together for the upcoming adult softball leagues. Men's and coed leagues will be offered this year. Leagues begin in early June. Additional information on managers' meetings to follow.

Sports hotline

Information concerning the Pagosa Springs Recreation Department may be found by calling the Pagosa Springs Sports Hotline at 264-6658 or logging on to townofpagosasprings.com and going to the Parks and Recreation link. All schedules and upcoming events are updated every Monday morning.

Hiring officials

The department continues to seek individuals interested in officiating youth and adult basketball, youth baseball and/or adult softball. High school students may apply. Compensation is $10-$25 per game depending on age group and experience. Call immediately if interested.

For additional information about any of the Pagosa Springs Recreation Department adult or youth sports programs, contact Myles Gabel, recreation supervisor, at 264-4151, Ext. 232.

Editorial

No Teacher Left Behind

With Colorado public schools recently engaged with CSAP test-ing and its backwash, it is timely to consider public educa-tion, its funding and future.

Most Colorado school administrators and teachers will readily admit CSAP is a burden, demanding time away from regular curriculum, added paperwork, bringing the chance of penalties for poor performance. Caught at the right time, they will tell us tests have revealed that too many districts listened too long to their own propaganda and came to believe it; they were not providing the basic instruction needed for students to be able compete in a rapidly changing economic universe.

In truth, enormous honor rolls did not accurately reflect the skill level of the "honor students." An A in a math or English class too often did not translate to high-level achievement when skills were put to a difficult test.

How could this be? Without doubt, it reflects the pressure exerted by the parent-as-pal; it illustrates the failures of the principle of self-esteem before accomplishment, and the "I'm the Proud Parent of an Honor Student" bumper sticker-style of education, This pressure has crippled the ability of schools to teach and to realistically judge student performance - to judge it at all, in some cases - witness a report of a district where parents protested marks on student papers made in red ink. A critical mark in red ink, after all, damages a child's self-esteem.

A solution to the decline will be complicated, but there are clear places to begin.

School districts and legislators must find ways to require responsible parenting, work to enhance discipline in the schools. We have bent over backward in Colorado to demand that school systems make themselves accountable to parents; we have done too little to require parent accountability regarding a child's attendance, behavior and performance at school. State legislators, local elected officials and many administrators have catered to the trend, reinforcing problems created by poisonous parental influences. They have abetted the worst from parents, and often abandoned those in the classroom who must face the problem every day.

That is the second place to start: Changing the way we deal with our teachers. We've done a poor job of it lately.

It is little wonder many high school administrators, asked about the number of the "best and brightest" at their school who plan to become teachers, will reply "very few."

We need to approach our problem by bringing more resources to bear in support of the point man. How about a new program in public education: No Teacher Left Behind.

Let's provide added reward and renewed support to the individuals who spend more time with the average child during the week than the child's parents. The teachers.

If we can manage to shed the yoke of TABOR in the fall election, we need to spend more money on public K-12 education. We should dedicate most of the increase to teacher salaries - not salaries for administrators, not more money for paper pushers, politicos and their wasteful practices. To teachers. If we are to bring our education system back into high gear, we need to begin with a wage for teachers commensurate with the enormous responsibility they assume. We need to keep good teachers in our employ and attract the best students coming out of our colleges to the profession - restore the dignity of the occupation and do it with compensation as well as with the unflinching backing of administrations and elected officials who have the courage to stand up to the steady erosion of discipline and parental responsibility that plagues the institution.

We need to make sure there is No Teacher Left Behind.

Karl Isberg

Pacing Pagosa

Silver slide made a difference

By Richard Walter

SUN Columnist

We were in the middle of football practice on the high school field in Town Park.

The year was 1949 and a short, somewhat tubby freshman was working out at center and fullback.

It was to be an eventful day, one not focused on sport, but on a growing desire to add music to the Pagosa school experience.

A school band was forming and my mother believed it would add to my educational foundation to become a part of it. I wasn't so sure sports would leave time for music outside the classroom, but had agreed to at least investigate.

How did that music opportunity reach the football field?

After running a play, I was called to the sideline to meet a musical instrument dealer. I had decided that if I were going to play, I'd like to play trombone. No particular reason, except that for some reason the sound appealed to me.

This man had a vast array of trombones available, he said, and they ranged in price from $900 new to $120 for a used, silver-slide Olds, the Cadillac at the time of the trombone genre. Mother would have found the money for whatever I wanted, but that silver slide stayed in my mind for three days until the decision had to be made. The Olds, it was.

Now I was both a prospective football player and prospective band member. The questions were many. What if I succeeded at both? Could I play on the field for both student groups?

A definite no as far as football was concerned.

But concert band beckoned and it keyed for me a new understanding of the beats and riffs I'd heard all my life. I had never thought of being a musician, but rhythm seemed in my blood.

I learned to read music. I learned parts in support of other instruments and I learned solo lines featuring the wide range of notes available on the trombone.

I went to band practice and then to practice whatever sport was in season at the time. They melded the mind and body into knowledge of accompaniment, to support, to back-up the play of another. Like the effort on the sports field, music is a teamwork event. The team and the band are better if all performers are on the same page, at the same time.

What about classes? I thankfully was a good student, and saw that efforts in both sports and music combined to make classroom performance a must so I could stay in the extracurricular activities. Other extras like Boys Glee Club and Letterman's Club would come along, but music continued to be a key for me.

I made first chair and then solo trombone, played my first solo in a fine arts festival, and later doubled on the baritone horn.

I was a football starter for three years at center, played defensive middle linebacker in football, guard in basketball, played the outfield and pitched in baseball, and took part in numerous class plays.

I credit the blend of music and sports so long ago with providing me a high school background netting a collegiate scholarship and a lifetime love of music of all kinds.

Every child in Pagosa Springs schools deserves a chance to give music a chance.

Legacies

90 years ago

Taken from The Pagosa Springs SUN files of Apr. 23, 1915

Stollsteimer Creek is the highest now since the big flood.

An improvement in our city that we particularly notice is the planting of young shade trees around some of our homes. The town could well afford to plant a few trees in our park each season and thus bring our public playground and resting place back to its former standard.

The revolver is a nickel-plated substitute for bravery, which has practically driven the original article out of the market. The revolver gives a puny man with a 5-8-inch brain and the pluck of a grasshopper a 100-yard reach and makes him more deadly than a Sioux Indian.

 

75 years ago

Taken from SUN files of Apr. 25, 1930

Gravel surfacing of Pagosa and a portion of San Juan streets in Pagosa Springs will soon be in progress, actual work of grading having already begun on east Pagosa Street in preparation for the gravel.

The Sunetha Golf Club grounds are reported in excellent condition and are attracting many local enthusiasts.

In addition to his present dairy business, C.D. Thayer on Monday rented the former Sparks building on Lewis Street, wherein he will conduct a feed store to be known as the Thayer Cash Feed Store.

A tiny girl, weighing only 2-1/2 pounds, was born Tuesday night to Mr. and Mrs. Ben Perez, who reside in the vicinity of Chris Mountain.

 

50 years ago

Taken from SUN files of Apr. 22, 1955

A move was started recently in Durango to have the San Juan Basin sections of Colorado, New Mexico, Utah and Arizona form a new state. These different areas all feel that they receive very little attention from their respective state governments and would be able to have a better state than heretofore. A lot of arguments pro and con have been advanced, names have been suggested and several towns have made a bid for the state capitol if such a move is ever made. The Mayor of Pagosa Springs suggested that they should build the capitol here if the state is formed. Some of the Denver citizens and newspapers have been rather indignant over the idea but it has gained the San Juan Basin some nationwide publicity.

 

 

25 years ago

Taken from SUN files of Apr. 24, 1980

McCabe Creek filled a six foot culvert Monday of this week when it started its runoff. The stream then backed up onto the yards of some of the residents in the area between the creek and Fifth Street Monday night. There is still some snowmelt left to come down that stream and it has damaged two streets, as well as flooding a yard or two of residences on Florida Street.

Immaculate Heart of Mary Church had its first installation of the Knights of Columbus Council on the 19th and 20th of April. There were 35 new members installed. The main function of the new council at Pagosa Springs will be to help Father John Bowe in carrying out all the duties and responsibilities of the church.

Features

The gentrification of South Pagosa

By Erin K. Quirk

Staff Writer

Webster's Dictionary defines "gentrification" as the process of converting an aging neighborhood into a more affluent one; or the immigration of middle class people into a deteriorating or recently renewed city area.

It is a well-worn and sometimes controversial word in neighborhoods in Seattle, Los Angles and Dallas, but until recently the concept, on a large scale, was still new to Pagosa Springs.

Today, the Riverwalk Townhomes, found along the banks of the San Juan River on South 6th Street in downtown Pagosa Springs, are getting their final touches. Five pastel-colored townhomes hug the banks of the river, face the mountains and boast decks that, with the spring runoff, now actually hang over the river.

The three-story, two- and three-bedroom townhomes of Riverwalk One are now sold out; prices started at $250,000. They range in size from 1,250 to 1,600 square feet. Riverwalk One was built on a vacant lot by developer and contractor Chris Smith, who moved to Pagosa Springs from Los Angeles six years ago.

Riverwalk Two is Smith's next project, located along the river at South 5th Street. On Tuesday it was reviewed by the town planning commission. For details on its reception by the public and the commission, please see a story in this week's SUN. While larger but similar in concept to Riverwalk One, there is one major difference. The land was not vacant.

As planned, the development will host 39 townhome units built in phases on 3.5 acres. The land is currently home to the Riverview Trailer Park. The property, which has been the site of about 15 trailer homes, has been purchased and all but one of the residents have moved. The one remaining tenant may have to be evicted, said Smith.

A few trailers were left behind and are currently up for sale and the park has a decidedly abandoned feel. Mattresses, garbage and tipped over tricycles are strewn among construction signs and piles of dirt. If all the permits are secured on schedule, Smith hopes to begin clean-up and excavation in June.

"This is a classic case of gentrification of a neighborhood," said Town Planner Tamra Allen, adding that it is the first Pagosa Springs has seen on a large scale.

Depending where you live, gentrification can be a sensitive issue, due to the inevitable displacement of often longtime residents, historical issues and a resistance to what some call "Yuppification" - a slang term based on the pejorative name for young urban professionals.

However, Smith said in this case, the plan went fairly smoothly. He said state law requires that residents of the trailer park be given six months to move out, but these residents were given nine. Allen agreed, saying they heard little direct comment from the residents about moving. Smith said some neighbors of the project turned out at the public hearings, not so much to oppose the project but to find out what it was.

From a town planning standpoint the thorniest issue to arise from the project is the loss of affordable housing in the downtown core.

The loss of affordable housing is hardly an uncommon concern where redevelopment projects occur. Allen said it has become a major area of study in the Conceptual Downtown Master Plan and the town is currently planning a needs assessment.

Replacing existing affordable housing with townhomes or condos, which often invite second homeowners or renters, has a definite impact on a town's demographics. In Allen's mind the big question with regard to affordable housing is "how do you balance regulatory issues and the free market." That is a topic for discussion in the larger and more policy-based Comprehensive Plan.

But for Smith the redevelopment of the area makes sense.

"We have the dumpiest trailer park in the county on the nicest property in the county," he said, adding that such projects make sense for the financial health of municipalities facing increased public demands.

"You have to have people and a tax base. We are adding five new taxpayers on the highest priced real estate in town."

Like the developers of the Aspen Village project, Smith is a resident. He has six children between the ages of 10 and 18, most of whom are home schooled and are soccer players on local teams. His office is on 7th Street and he routinely walks to the river to check the Riverwalk projects. He is one of a handful of local builders involved in the "Build Green Program" which is a federal program that encourages energy efficient construction, use of recyclable products and conservation heating systems.

Smith said the market is driving the townhome developments in ways he never imagined, but at the same time he is trying to build something that "makes sense" in light of the planning effort going on in the downtown core. He said three of the five owners of the Riverwalk One townhomes are local and the other two are second homeowners.

"The residential will compliment whatever commercial will come in and vice versa," Smith said about the project, adding that walkable, higher density development is appropriate for a downtown core. "It will be nice to be able to walk everywhere."

One of the surprising elements of the Riverwalk One project is its proximity to the San Juan River. If the river were deep enough and one were inclined, it is possible to jump from the balcony into the river. Riverwalk Two will not stand as close to the water.

Smith said the federal government does flood surveys on 100- and 500-year events and draws a line indicating the floodway. Smith said the project was surveyed and is built on the edge of the floodway but not within it. A major retaining wall has been built below the units.

However, the town's river restoration project calls for a walking trail along the river next to Riverwalk One. Needless to say, at this time of year people walking a trail there would need waders. Allen said the project was surveyed incorrectly and a 10 -foot easement was supposed to be left from the high water line to the edge of the project. It wasn't.

Therefore the town and Smith have reached an agreement that, when the river restoration project reaches the site, an easement will have to be created either next to the river or elsewhere on the property. Smith said he has placed funds in an escrow account for that purpose.

Ironically, Smith said, this project has not received the attention that some others in the downtown core have. He said careful study of the Community Vision Council's plan doesn't include much about South 6th Street. In fact, Smith said he submitted his plans to the town just before the CVC did and has not been given much in the way of additional guidelines.

"I hope we are doing something that compliments what they are trying to accomplish," he said.

Smith, who has more than 20 years experience in the building trades, said he was a little surprised by the planning protocols, or lack of them, in place in the town. While he doesn't advocate the extremely restrictive and bureaucratic approach found in the planning departments of major cities in California, he does support establishing processes that will help the town through its growth period. To that end he has applied for the volunteer position on the Comprehensive Master Plan Committee.

"I'd love to help, because I've seen the downfalls," he said.

If the Riverwalk Two project clears the planning commission April 26, it will move on to the town council for review and public hearing.

 

Planning commission meeting canceled

The Archuleta County Planning Commission will not meet as regularly scheduled April 27.

The next regularly scheduled meeting is 7 p.m. May 11.

'Soup for the Soul' on menu today at senior center

Two local chefs will contribute to the first annual "Soup for the Soul" charity fund-raiser to benefit Hospice of Mercy.

Chef Russ Apodaca of Victoria's Parlor will serve New England clam chowder and Gene Coatney, chef at JJ's Upstream, will serve French onion soup. Both soups will be served today at the Pagosa Senior Center, 11:30 am. to 1 p.m.

From April 24 to 30, the event will be in full swing as more than 49 restaurants in La Plata and Archuleta counties join Soup for the Soul, donating to Hospice of Mercy a portion of their soup sales made during the week.

Since 1980, Hospice of Mercy has provided compassionate, end-of-life care to thousands of terminally ill patients in the Four Corners area. For more information on Soup for the Soul and Hospice of Mercy, contact Michelle Appenzeller at Hospice of Mercy, 382-2000.

 

Food safety training course at health department

A training on Food Safety will be offered May 10 by San Juan Basin Health Department's Environmental Division. This four-hour course will offer a wide-range of food safety topics as well as important new changes in the Colorado Retail Food Establishment regulations.

It will take place at the health department's main conference room in Durango. The cost is $40. For more information or to RSVP, contact 247-5702, Ext. 223.

 

Pagosa's Past

Hersch entourage escapes from pass

By John M. Motter

PREVIEW Columnist

Life in Archuleta County and in the San Juan Basin changed radically when Wolf Creek Pass opened in 1916. Prior to the opening, most commerce including goods and people entered the area by way of the narrow gauge railroad. The railroad entered the basin in 1881 and especially during winter provided the wheels of commerce.

By 1916, motor cars and trucks were making huge inroads into rail transportation dominance. The pass had to be opened and it was. For the past few weeks, we have been writing about the events leading up to construction of Wolf Creek Pass.

We're concluding the pass story this week with the final episode from a description of the first crossing of Wolf Creek Pass by motor car. Last week Myrtle Hersch described how a section of the roadbed gave way, leaving their car teetering precariously over the edge. According to Myrtle:

"Only a miracle caused it (the car) to hold, for it seemed a puff of wind could set it off. We stood and looked - all the cars had gone ahead, and we were alone with miles to any work camp. We knew that my husband would stop soon, if Marguerite didn't see us coming behind them. After about fifteen or twenty minutes a wagon with two men and carrying heavy cables and a bicycle came along. The men tied the car to the trees on the upper side with ropes. One man rode the wheel down two miles where he met David (Myrtle's husband David Hersch) walking back with some of the work crew. The men cut down several small trees and built cribbing which they filled in with rocks. Then they jacked up the car little by little, built again, until it was in a near level position. Six men held the cables while David drove onto solid ground.

"While they were working, I carried drinking water in a pint cup from the creek below up that bank for the men, for it was now midday in a July sun. It was forty feet to the nearest tree to stop the car's rolling, had it gone down.

"When the task was nearly completed, I took photographs, then the three of us went on down the two mile, where Marguerite sat waiting all these hours alone - not knowing what had happened to any of us.

"As my family was reunited, and no one was hurt, I began to weaken, and became so shaky I couldn't stop trembling. I kept growing weaker and more frightened as the miles passed until we were within two miles of Pagosa Springs and home. I did as some other women in the past have done - fainted. At the Todd Ranch (Jersey Todd), they stretched me out on the grass beside the highway, and with water and spirits of ammonia, I was soon revived. I have heard of people being scared to death. This was the next thing to it.

"Even with such experiences, I love our Wolf Creek Pass with its forty-seven years of memories and happy associations."

Motter's note: Myrtle's story was obviously written 47 years after it opened in 1916.

During its early years, Wolf Creek Pass was open but a few months each summer. Eventually, when better snow plowing equipment became available, the pass was kept open year around, as it is today. Upgrading has been a constant activity on the pass, which began as a narrow, one-lane road in 1916.

As the reader can determine from Myrtle's story of that first crossing Wolf Creek Pass is much less intimidating today.

Weather

Date High Low Precipitation

Type Depth Moisture

4/13

65

26

-

-

-

4/14

65

33

-

-

-

4/15

64

30

R

.01"

.01

4/16

64

33

-

-

-

4/17

65

33

-

-

-

4/18

63

31

-

-

-

4/19

64

28

-

-

-

Three days of fair weather due; rain possible Sunday

By Richard Walter

Staff Writer

Those who liked the past week's weather - save the lightning and rain April 14 ß should relish the upcoming week.

With low mountain runoff filling area rivers, officials warn there is some danger of flooding in lowland areas and warn banks may erode, making them treacherous play areas for young children.

That melt-off should continue with highs throughout the next week in the 60s. Only today are higher than normal winds expected, with gusts up to 25 miles per hour and a high temperature of 64 forecast.

National Weather Service in Grand Junction says Friday and Saturday will bring more of the same, with high temperatures increasing about two degrees per day, topping out at 69 Saturday.

Best chances for precipitation are Sunday through Monday with temperatures dropping near 60 and mostly cloudy skies. Tuesday should bring a return to partly cloudy skies and rising temperatures.

Local statistics reflect only .01 inch of rain in the past week, that coming April 15. But don't try to convince those driven indoors from Golden Peaks Stadium that the rainfall was that light. It lasted only about 20-25 minutes, but at that location it came down in torrents.

Highest temperature recorded in the past week in Pagosa Springs was 65.2 April 14. The lowest daytime high was 47.6 Wednesday. Coldest overnight temperature in the period was the 26.6 Tuesday night. On four of the last seven days, winds have been N-NW.

San Juan River flow, as mentioned, has been rising rapidly, climbing from 1,000 cubic feet per second April 13 at the Carracas flow monitor to a peak of 2,670 early Wednesday.

Mean flow for that date, over the last 43 years, has been 1,153 cubic feet per second.

River bank levels in town had risen into low lying parks areas Wednesday morning but flow data has not been available since the measuring station was removed during the town's San Juan River restoration project.

Two of three other county streams also showed comparative high flows Wednesday. The Piedra River, just above Arboles, was running at 3,410 cubic feet per second; the Blanco River at 334 cfs. The Navajo River, conversely, was below average flow at the site below Oso Diversion dam, running at 35.4 cfs compared to the long-time average for the date of 46.3.

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