July 7, 2005
Front Page

Health services district must smooth rifts, deal with debts

By John Middendorf

Staff Writer

"We know where we are, and where we want to go, but we have a gap in between," said J.R. Ford at Tuesday's Upper San Juan Health Services Board Meeting, "and we have to look at all the options to fill that gap."

Filling the "gap" between the currently closed Mary Fisher Clinic and a future critical access hospital is a major challenge for the board, and there are diverging opinions on how to move forward.

An ad hoc committee chaired by Ford aims to detail a business plan which will have the support of both the board and the local medical providers, and that will illustrate the pathway toward achieving a critical access hospital status for the Dr. Mary Fisher Medical Center.

The main challenge seems to be getting local providers to collaborate, rather than compete, with a district managed medical center. In the past, there has been friction between some local providers and the Mary Fisher Clinic, leading to anger and resentment, said Pam Hopkins, chair of the USJHS Board. "We're clearly going to have to put all that behind us, and start anew," she said.

But there seems to be a split developing between the doctors and the citizens on the district board. At last month's meeting, a post-executive session vote regarding the established partnership with Mercy Medical Center was split along professional lines, with the two physicians on the board, Jim Pruitt and Dick Blide, voting against accepting Mercy's proposal of full management control for six months. The doctors wanted the board to retain management control with Mercy acting only in a consulting, advisory capacity. The other five board members voted to accept Mercy's proposal in its entirety.

Differences regarding the board's "Critical Access Hospital Pathway" seem to be creeping in: director Bob Goodman stated the board has "bent over backwards to include (local providers) in our model" in the comprehensive plan, while Dr. Mark Wienpahl, Pagosa Family Medicine, countered that the plan was put together without significant input from the local providers. Dave Bohl, chairman of the USJHSD Finance Committee, stated, "With all due respect to Dr. Wienpahl, the local providers have not shown good faith in negotiations."

Members of the Critical Access Hospital Pathway ad hoc committee include Ford, director Jerry Valade, Pruitt, one more member that will be chosen by Hopkins, with Rick O'Block of Mercy Management acting as technical advisor. Valade expressed the concern that, if another local provider was chosen for the unfilled position, the committee might have trouble remaining objective. The choice seems critical, as the success of a future Critical Access Hospital in Pagosa is dependent on the support of local providers, according to a feasibility analysis put together in March by Rural Health Consultants.

In other matters at the Tuesday meeting, O'Block presented his work-in-progress report, and outlined several areas of management concern. Financial troubles continue to plague the health district, with accounts receivable "still dismal," according to O'Block. With over $250,000 over 120 days past due and only a small fraction of that looking recoverable, O'Block recommended writing off the bad debts. The main cause seems to be the outsourcing of the billing system, which has resulted in major discrepancies.

The board's intuited fears were realized when a Mercy Management sampling study found that the average time between care and billing for services averaged 62 days with a 33-percent error rate. A well managed health care center should be able to bill within seven days with less than a 10-percent error rate, according to O'Block.

The board then authorized O'Block to terminate the outsourcing billing contract "at his earliest convenience," and bring billing in-house with a new computerized system, which should be up and operational within six weeks of initiation. The new system, estimated to cost around $16,000, will have better controls, increased cash flow, higher collection rates at a lower cost and quicker billing turnaround, according to O'Block.

O'Block also presented a new provider fee schedule. After some debate on whether to set prices on relative values, or based on Medicare prices (two of the established ways providers set fees), it was decided to establish current and future prices based on Medicare prices multiplied by a factor of two, which the board approved unanimously.

Joy Sinnott, operations manager for EMS, described a busy Fourth of July weekend, with a record 36 calls and 15 patients transported over the four-day period. The rodeo was interrupted Friday when the ambulance on duty specifically for the Red Ryder Rodeo was needed for another event in town. With all three Pagosa ambulances transporting patients to Durango, a quick response vehicle from Chromo arrived to fill the gap.

Other business at the Tuesday meeting, directors heard:

- A monthly meeting with management and staff of the USJHSD is being scheduled to facilitate communication and to keep the staff informed of management changes.

- A comprehensive policy manual for USJHSD employees, currently lacking, is being compiled and reviewed by Mercy Management.

- Current lease agreements with tenants of the Mary Fisher Clinic, valid to the end of 2006, are being reviewed and a new, more comprehensive, lease agreement is being prepared for future interested parties.

- Five applicants have applied for the EMS operations manager opening, with the goal of hiring a new EMS manager by August.


Commissioners split on issue of gravel pit

By James Robinson

Staff Writer

Want to swap a lake for a gravel pit? That was one issue the Archuleta County Board of County Commissioners wrangled over during Tuesday's commissioner's meeting.

"I think it's a bad idea," commissioner Robin Schiro said, commenting on the proposition of exchanging a lake for a gravel pit on the Keyah Grande site west of Pagosa Springs.

Schiro said she'd seen the proposal in January 2005 and thought it lacked sufficient research and data for her to give it a "yes" vote.

She said although county engineer Sue Walan had provided more soil samples as requested, she still wasn't convinced the project's benefits outweighed the costs.

Walan said if the project was approved, the county would not own the land in question, but would pay no royalties (about 25 cents a ton) on the gravel extracted.

She said the property owner was willing to provide the county with essentially free gravel if the mining site could be made into a lake once the extraction was complete. Walan said the property owner also wanted an access road to the lake.

Walan said the county would need to build an access road anyway, and therefore the lake access road would already be in and would not be an additional expense to the county.

Walan said, after walking the site and obtaining soil samples, she believed gravel procured from site, after blending, would provide a source for quality, road-grade gravel in a part of the county where they don't currently have a site. In her presentation, Walan asked the commissioners for nearly $4,800 to fund a wetland study which was required before any mining operations began.

But Schiro wasn't convinced. She expressed concern that the county had not thoroughly assessed the cost of mining and blending gravel, and that a mining plan should be in place before the county undertakes such a project.

"We don't have the equipment to mine," Schiro said.

Furthermore, Schiro said, while the soil samples she had asked for had been produced, cost estimates for mining and blending had not.

She said she suspects the gravel's overall quality, and that the cost to blend it to road-grade standards might outweigh the no-royalty benefit.

Schiro said a mining plan, site research and good data were critical components to any mining operation the county undertakes. But she said her main reason for dissent was that she was uncomfortable helping a private entity dig a hole for a lake.

Schiro voted against funding the wetland study. Commissioner Ronnie Zaday voted for it, and with commission chair Mamie Lynch absent, the motion to approve the wetland study died and so did, at least temporarily, the proposal for a gravel pit at the Keyah Grande site.

In other action, the county commissioners:

- appointed Ron Chacey, and reappointed Dan Aupperle, to the Archuleta County Planning Commission. Both men will serve two-year terms.

- sent as public comment to the U.S. Forest Service a statement reading "the Commissioners of Archuleta County support protecting human health and access to water, and thus oppose drilling within one and one half miles of the Fruitland Outcrop and within one and one half miles in the Roadless Area of the HD Mountains."

The statement was taken from a previous county resolution 2004-48. The request to send the statement to the Forest Service as public comment was made by Archuleta County residents Bill and Julie Vance.

- accepted Homeland Security Grant funding and Law Enforcement Training and Preparedness Plan funding totaling $87,575. About $60,000 of those funds will be used to upgrade the county's emergency and law enforcement communications systems to the 800 megahertz system currently being used statewide.

- approved two $500 awards to Catherine Crouse and Mark Learned who helped the Archuleta County Sheriff's Department capture one of the three felony inmates who escaped from the Archuleta County Jail in March 2005.

Archuleta County Undersheriff Bob Grandchamp said "Without assistance and cooperation from our citizens, our job in law enforcement would be that much more difficult. The courage and sense of civic duty displayed by Ms. Crouse and Mr. Learned, with their actions, should be acknowledged and rewarded."


First reading of big box ordinance next week

By James Robinson

Staff Writer

Following months of study, public input and recommendations by the town's Big Box Task Force, the town of Pagosa Springs is nearly ready to adopt an official ordinance to manage Big Box retail development.

The first reading of the new ordinance, scheduled for 5 p.m Wednesday, July 13, at the Pagosa Springs Town Hall, will give the public another chance to comment.

The ordinance follows a moratorium on big box retail development enacted by the town last July. The moratorium and its subsequent extensions is set to expire Aug. 3.

Under the provisions of the moratorium the processing of permits for non-grocery retail development exceeding 18,000 square feet were halted to allow the town to craft a long-term big box retail policy.

Following the enactment of the moratorium, the town created the Big Box Task Force, a team of community members from wide and varied backgrounds to study the effects of big box development on Pagosa Springs. Using public input and data gathered by the consulting firm, Economic and Planning Systems, the task force developed strategies for mitigating or eliminating the potential fallout if big box development became part of the town's retail mix.

The task force, amongst other recommendations, ultimately advocated dividing the town into a zone system with square footage caps placed on retail projects within the different zones.

Town council members took the Big Box Task Force's recommendations into consideration when crafting the ordinance and the first reading will give the public another chance to comment.

A second and final opportunity for public input will occur Aug. 2 during the second reading.

 Inside The Sun

Local government considers affordable housing

By Sarah Smith

SUN Intern

To say that Pagosa Springs is growing would be an understatement.

With all the new homes and developments popping up everywhere, it's hard to miss the fact that our little town has hit a growth spurt.

And as with all new growth, there are positives and negatives. But one major negative is proving to be a huge problem for our town: the swelling price of land.

Pagosa Springs has always been a very desirable place to live, and more and more people are realizing it. With the influx of people demanding their own plot of Pagosa Country, the price of those plots is skyrocketing.

And while this is good news for some, it's a disaster for others. The price hikes in land have made it nearly impossible to find affordable housing in town.

The town is taking current actions to help keep housing affordable; for example, the town is willing to waive fees (like housing application fees) to keep costs down.

"We don't want to lose the ability to retain the workforce and those who don't want ownership or can't afford it," said Julie Jessen, special projects director.

Jessen said the town is being very proactive and working with the state on a needs assesment that will help determine how much affordable housing Pagosa requires. Mark Garcia, town manager, said this needs assesment will be "very helpful" in conjunction with the impact fee analysis that is also currently underway.

The impact fee analysis will determine future impacts that new developments will have on the town and county. The analysis will assess the wages of new employees, among other factors. Through this study of wages, town planners can determine employees' capacity to find affordable housing.

The date of the completion of the needs assessment is undetermined, and the impact fee analysis should be finished by mid-August. Once the town has the findings in hand, it will be able to construct a game plan for creating affordable housing. These processes are an attempt to get more information and a "possibility to look at all of our options," said Garcia.

One of the options, placing restrictions on developers that would force them to create a certain number of affordable homes in every number of homes built, has already been adopted by the Town of Durango. Jessen said that although this is certainly an option for Pagosa, the town would rather work with the developers in a partnership than "wave restrictions over their heads."

The town is also considering partnerships with the private landowners which would allow them to work together towards providing affordable housing.

Or it could be a blend of the two options, according to Garcia. Or three. For now, the solution to this growing problem still falls in the "yet to be determined" category.

"We're being progressive," said Garcia. "We know there's a problem; it started last year with the eviction of the mobile home park. It became immediately apparent that we needed to be more proactive."

The town isn't alone in its struggle to secure affordable housing. Colorado Housing Inc., an organization that builds affordable housing, has also run into problems.

Jessen, who is also on the board of CHI, said that the shortage of affordable land in Durango has forced CHI construction there to move to the outskirts of town (and of course, the further out of town one lives, the more expensive daily life becomes). Things are moving in the same direction for Pagosa; Jessen reported that the town has purchased a few acres of land on Juanita Street, but that's about all that's left.

Jamie Blechman, a family services coordinator at CHI, reported that CHI also has one of the last pieces of affordable property in town, on the overlook of 5th Street where they are currently building a cluster of cottage-style homes. He reported there is enough land for the next two years, but then CHI too will be forced to look elsewhere for affordable land. He also reported that this is the last year CHI will be building in the Fairfield area.

"It's just too expensive," said Blechman. "Forty-thousand dollars for a piece of land is not appropriate for what we're trying to achieve."

These enormous land prices are "eating into the construction budgets, making the houses smaller," said Jessen. She also reported that the land prices are limiting the income levels of families building and the quality of homes built.

Blechman said that although CHI is having trouble finding suitable land for their needs, they are taking action to keep affordable houses in Pagosa. CHI has begun placing deed restrictions on newly built houses to limit the maximum sales price of the home. The restriction lasts for 20 years, and the appreciation of the home is capped at four-percent. These restrictions keep the price of the house down, so future families can also afford the home. CHI also monitors who buys the home, making sure they meet the income qualifications and the house stays in the community. "We can't sell it to an out-of-state millionare," Blechman said.

Blechman also said that this limits the amount of profit the homeowner can make when they sell the home. He gave an example of one individual who built a home for $110,000 and then, without ever actually living in the home, sold it within the year for $225,000.

Although Blechman said this scenario is a rarity, it's the type of situation CHI wants to avoid. Blechman said that the restrictions are not designed to take away oppurtunities but rather to create them. "We're supposed to create affordable housing, not an oppurtunity to make a killing. It's not a cash cow."

CHI's deed restrictions are the beginning steps of what will surely be a long battle to keep affordable housing available in Pagosa Country. The results of the town's analyses, which may be ready as soon as August, will provide another big step. And while CHI, the Town of Pagosa Springs, and other companies continue to take these steps towards solutions, Jessen urges citizens of Pagosa to stay involved.

"People need to keep a pulse on affordability in this town," she said. "The affordability is what makes a town live."


Volunteers Needed for Home Delivered Meal Program

Are you looking for a way to volunteer some time to your community and make an immediate impact on someone's life?

The Archuleta County Silver Foxes Den Senior Center has an opportunity for you to make new friends while you donate one lunch hour per week to the home delivered meal program for our senior citizens.

Applications are currently being accepted from individuals as well as businesses, churches and other organizations that would like to make a difference. All applicants must provide their own vehicle and be available in one hour increments once a week. We are also accepting applications for substitute drivers. A background check will be completed on all applicants.

Adopt a home delivered route today and brighten the lives of a few senior citizens. For more information contact Musetta Wollenweber at 264-2167.


Democratic candidate Bridges visits Pagosa Springs

By Jim Merlino

Special to The SUN

Rutt Bridges, entrepreneur and Democratic candidate for governor, continued his statewide listening tour in southwestern Colorado over Independence Day weekend with a meet and greet event at the Pagosa Baking Company in Pagosa Springs Saturday morning.

"This is his second visit to Pagosa," said Kathy Keyes, owner of Pagosa Baking Company. "We are very happy to have him here."

Surrounded by artwork from local and regional artists including Dianne Milner of Bayfield, and Diane Reyna of Taos, N.M., community members chatted with Bridges while they sipped coffee and ate breakfast burritos.

Bridges spoke briefly about his small business and coalition-building experience before opening the floor for questions and discussion.

Bridges spoke about the hopes and dreams of the people he's met on his statewide listening tour and challenges facing Colorado, including quality and affordable K-12 and higher education, accessible health care, economic security and budget policies that reflect the values of Coloradans.

"Everywhere in Colorado, I hear the same thing," Bridges said. "We all just want to enjoy the best quality of life we can in our beautiful state. I'm running for governor because I want to put my proven leadership and job creation experience to work on common-sense solutions for all of us."

Bridges, the founder of the Bighorn Center for Public Policy, is credited for his role in passing Colorado's Telemarketing No-Call List. Born and raised in rural South Georgia, he is the son of a water well driller and a church secretary. Bridges moved to Colorado 25 years ago and founded an innovative small business, which grew from three to over 70 employees.

Saturday's stop in Pagosa Springs is part of Bridges' plan to finish visiting all 64 Colorado counties this summer. During the weekend, he also held meet and greet events in Durango, South Fork, Creede, Lake City, Ridgway, Telluride, Dove Creek, Cortez and Silverton. Bridges visited southwestern Colorado in April at the beginning of his listening tour prior to deciding to run for governor.


Planning Commission

The Archuleta County Planning Commission will hold its regular meeting at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, July 13, in the county commissioners' meeting room, in the Archuleta County Courthouse. Public comment is welcome and encouraged.

The agenda includes:

- Call to order/roll call at 7 p.m.

- Minor impact sketch plan review of the Leeper Minor Impact Subdivision. This is a request to obtain approval of a sketch plan to legally subdivide a single parcel of 13.00 acres from a 39.70-acre parcel of land, for purposes of future resale. The project is located at 1390 CR 400 (Fourmile Road) (legal description: SW1/4 of NW1/4 of Section 12, Township 35N, R2W, N.M.P.M.).

- Minor impact sketch plan review for the McInnis Minor Impact Subdivision. This is a request to obtain approval of the sketch plan to legally subdivide a single parcel of 1.00 acre from an 8.41-acre tract of land, for purposes of future resale. The project is located at 1150A-C and 1230 County Road 600 (Piedra Road) (legal description: SW1/4, Section 9, Township 35N, R2W, N.M.P.M.).

- A public hearing for the conditional use permit request for Busted Spur Rodeo Arena. This is a request for a year-round equestrian arena. Hours of operation will be 6 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and occasional weekends. This will include a concession stand and a souvenir shop. The project site is located at 1061 U.S. 84. The legal description is Sections 19, Township 35 North, Range 1 West.

- Conditional use permit park review of The Links at Pagosa - A Residential Development. This is a request to construct a condominium development containing 33 individual units in a total of 3 buildings. This equates to 16.5 units per acre. The project is located at 109 Ace Court, near the intersection of County Road and Highway 160. (Legal description: Section 16, Township 35N, Range 2W.)

- LIU staff approvals: Los Pinos Fire District - New firehouse; Hart Construction - Shop at Cloman Industrial Park

- Review of the planning commission minutes of May 11, 2005.

- Other business that may come before the planning commission.

- Adjournment.


Mill Creek Road meeting off until August

By James Robinson

Staff Writer

The Pagosa Ranger District of the U.S. Forest Service announced the second Mill Creek Road meeting has been postponed until late July or early August.

In a press release, the Forest Service said, due to family emergencies, two key Pagosa Ranger District staff would not be able to attend the meeting, which was originally scheduled for June 28.

Mill Creek Road discussions between the Forest Service and area residents began June 13.

At the meeting the Forest Service and area residents discussed road maintenance issues and access problems. During the session the Forest Service heard citizen testimony and began collecting input on ways to solve the problems.

The section of road in question is a three-mile stretch that begins at the San Juan National Forest boundary, about four miles from the intersection of Mill Creek Road and U.S. 84, and continues through the forest to private inholdings in the High West Unit 11, Mill Creek Ranch, Rito Blanco Ranch and Cimarrona subdivisions, all of which lie inside the national forest boundary.

According to the Forest Service, the road had been maintained, mainly snowplowed, for many years via informal agreements between Archuleta County and the Forest Service.

The Forest Service stated that increased, all-weather usage had degraded the road and that the road had never been designed as an all-weather subdivision access road.

As county and federal agencies feel budgetary constraints, the Forest Service urged the citizens affected to work with them and each other to seek a creative solution to what Glen Raby of the Forest Service described as a "terrible problem."

Comments concerning Mill Creek Road should be sent via e-mail to Pagosa Ranger District, District Ranger, Jo Bridges. She said to tag the e-mail with "Mill Creek Road" as the subject.


Groundbreaking takes place for new MaT building

By Sarah Smith

SUN Intern

After a year-long delay, the board of education of Archuleta School District 50 Joint officially broke ground for the construction of the Maintenance and Transportation Facility (MaT) July 5 at noon.

The groundbreaking ceremony was held at the construction site south of Golden Peaks Stadium on the high school campus.

The district had considered other sites for the location of the new facility, including the LPEA facility next to the high school campus. Construction was delayed for more than a year as various site options were considered; however, the project is now up and running, with construction set to begin in August.

The old building at the elementary school campus will be demolished to make way for additional parking, parent drop-off and pickup, and bus traffic. The district administration believes that this roomier parking area will help alleviate some of the hectic traffic congestion at the elementary campus before and after school.

Steve Monjaras of Jaynes Construction Co., the company in charge of construction, says he is confident the construction of the 12,000 square-foot facility will be completed by the end of March.


Fire damages Rock Ridge trailer

By Sarah Smith

SUN Intern

A fire broke out last Wednesday evening at the Rock Ridge Trailer Park.

The family in the home, two adults and three children, were sleeping when the fire started. They were awakened by the smell of smoke and found flames issuing from their water heater closet.

The Pagosa Springs Fire Protection District was called to the scene at 6:10 p.m. Neighbors with buckets and hoses came to the aide of the family, attempting to control the fire until district units arrived.

Sixteen firefighters and two fire engines, along with a command vehicle and a rescue vehicle, responded to the scene. The Victim's Advocate Program and the Archuleta County Red Cross Disaster Action Team responded and assistance was given to the family.

The fire was confined to one bedroom, one bathroom and a water heater closet. Fire district spokesman Duwane Ramey stated containing this fire was no small feat for the firefighters considering mobile homes burn very quickly. Ramey also stated the fire is believed to have been started by the water heater and no foul play was suspected.


Stolen necklace returned to museum

By Sarah Smith

SUN Intern

After more than two years, a piece of Pagosa's stolen history has been returned.

On May 1, 2003, unidentified suspects broke into the San Juan Historical Society Museum at 1st and Pagosa streets. Taken from the museum were three antique firearms, an antique slot machine filled with coins and an antique necklace.

Using information received this week, the Pagosa Springs Police Department was able to recover the necklace from a location here in Pagosa. The silver and rhinestone Rebekah Lodge pendant is valued at an estimated $300, but its local history value is priceless.

After missing for two years, the necklace will finally be returned to its rightful place in the museum, where it can be appreciated by all.

"I'm really glad it's been found," said Ann Oldham, museum director. "I'm excited it's finally coming back to the museum."

Oldham added that the necklace is very important historically, since it belonged to Alice Webb, a pioneer of Pagosa Springs, who has many other items displayed in the museum.

"So many of our things belonged to pioneers, which really allows you to put names and faces to them," said Oldham.

When the items were stolen two years ago, the situation was bleak. It seemed likely the items were lost forever. Yet the return of the necklace has instilled a newfound optimism in the case.

Oldham expressed her hope that the three guns and the slot machine will be returned as well, since they too play an important role in Pagosa's history.

Detective Scott Maxwell is also hopeful the other stolen items will be recovered, although he reported the police received good information that the items were taken to the Aztec/Farmington area and traded for methamphetamine.

The person from whom the necklace was recovered was not arrested because they are not believed to be responsible for the burglary; however, the discovery of the necklace has opened up new leads for the police.

"Hopefully we will make an arrest in this case soon," Maxwell said, adding that the case is still under investigation.

Recovering an item after more than two years is no small feat. Maxwell stated that most stolen items are recovered after three to four months.

"I'm very thankful to the police for continuing with this case, and for being successful," said Oldham. "It's important to preserve our history."


Volunteers sought for trail work

The San Juan Mountains Association is seeking volunteers from the Pagosa Springs and Durango areas July 15 to help install and maintain rock water-bars and other drainage features along the first mile of the Fourmile Falls trail. Group size is limited. To register visit www.sjma.org or contact the San Juan Mountains Association at 385-1242.


Pagosa Rotary Club announces scholarships

By Livia Lynch

Special to The SUN

This year the Pagosa Springs Rotary Club awarded $13,500 in scholarships to five graduating seniors.

A $6,000 academic scholarship was awarded to valedictorian Randi Andersen. Randi plans on attending Western State College in the fall, majoring in theatre, film and mass communications.

Valedictorian Levi Gill received a $4,000 academic scholarship to also attend Western State College. Levi will be majoring in English with plans on becoming a high school teacher in the future.

Courtney Steen received a $1,000 scholarship to attend Colorado School of Mines, majoring in chemical engineering.

Valedictorian Jesse Morris also received a $1,000 academic scholarship and will be attending Colorado College in the fall.

Jessica Harms was the recipient of the $1,500 Rotary vocational scholarship and plans on attending a veterinary technology program at Colorado Mountain College.

A primary mission of Rotary is to promote "service above self." Since 1982, the Pagosa Springs Rotary Club has awarded college scholarships to 97 local youth, with scholarship awards totaling $195,000.

The purpose of these annual scholarship awards is to encourage student participation in community service, reward intellectual excellence and provide financial assistance for further education.


Five PSHS grads earn Fort Lewis honors

By Chris Aaland

Special to The SUN

Five former Pagosa Springs High School students were named to the spring dean's list at Fort Lewis College.

Pagosa Springs alumni who earned dean's list honors (with majors) include: Andrea Ash, interdisciplinary studies-elementary education; Amber Brown, English; Damien Fatur, student constructed major; Randi Pierce, English-communications; and Makina Quezada, interdisciplinary studies-elementary education.

To be eligible for the dean's list, a student must attain a grade point average of 3.4 or higher in not less than 14 hours of graded credit, and must have completed all work for which they are registered by the end of the semester.

Fort Lewis is Colorado's public liberal arts college, focused on preparing students for leadership in their careers and communities. Nearly 4,200 students are enrolled in 25 baccalaureate degree programs in the School of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, the School of Natural and Behavioral Sciences, the School of Business Administration and the Teacher Education Program.



Fire team takes over management of Rio Blanco Fire

By Pamella Wilson

Special to The SUN

Pagosa area residents may have noticed more government vehicles travelling along U.S. 84 since Sunday.

These vehicles belong, in part, to the Rocky Mountain Fire Use Management Team No. 1, which has arrived to help with the management of the Rio Blanco Fire, a lightning-caused fire that is being managed for its benefits to natural resources.

"We brought the team in to support us," said Jo Bridges, Pagosa District Ranger. "Their presence will allow some of our employees to focus on their regular jobs again, and the team also brings with them some additional skills that we can use, like long-term fire monitoring and behavior forecasts."

There are 10 members on the team, primarily from Colorado, and they will be assisted by 10-12 additional personnel.

The team is led by Bill Hahnenberg, a BLM employee with 32 years of fire experience.

"The team's current effort is to focus on managing the fire for the short term as well as developing a plan for the long term, which could be several weeks," said Hahnenberg.

One of the first things the team will be working on is what they can do to help alleviate some of the smoke. "The town has really been hit hard with smoke from the large fires in Arizona and Utah, as well as smoke from the Rio Blanco," said Bridges. "We know that smoke has been an issue for residents and we really appreciate the understanding that the community has shown." Plans are underway to get a "smoke specialist" to assist the team.

The fire, which has grown to 660 acres over the past week, continues to burn in an acceptable manner. "We've seen some pretty warm temperatures, low humidity, and winds up to 22 miles per hour, but the fire behavior hasn't really changed," said Steve Hentschel, fire management officer for the Pagosa Ranger District. "It's still just creeping along, doing what we we're hoping it would do."

The fire has grown more to the west than to the north which Hentschel attributes to a more continuous fuel supply. "This isn't causing us a lot of concern; however, we don't want the fire to travel past the ridge west of Deadman Canyon, so we will have the fire module members build some hand line along that ridge to stop the fire there," said Hentschel.

"Module members may also backlight in some areas, like along the west flank, which means they will burn up excess fuels to make it safe. This will stop the fire from moving further west," said Hentschel. "This will cause a short-term increase in smoke but should reduce some of the smoke that residents along U.S. 84 are experiencing."

In firefighter lingo, areas like the ridge are known as "trigger points" which are pre-identified points that fire managers don't want the fire to move past. Trigger points may be based on private property, cultural resources, timber resources, or other values that need protecting.

In addition to the Fire Use Team, the district has also brought in another Fire Use Module, the Unaweep, to help with monitoring. The Modules consist of 7-10 highly skilled firefighters. Each module will take half the fire area and will measure moisture levels in the fuels, observe fire behavior, and photograph fire activity. Module members may also be asked to build hand line or conduct burn out operations.

The team will be setting up an operations center, an incident command post, at the Pagosa Springs High School. Once established, residents will be invited to stop by and get information, look at maps and photos of the fire and ask questions.

"One of the tasks the Forest has charged us with is keeping the community informed and we hope to do just that," said Hahnenberg.


Hunter safety education classes begin soon

A hunter safety education class will begin July 18. The class will run July 18, 20, 22 and 23, from 6 to 9 p.m. on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and 8 a.m. to noon Saturday.

The class is free of charge and will be held at Pagosa Springs Town Hall, 551 Hot Springs Blvd.

This course is open to anyone wishing to obtain a hunter safety card. If you were born on or after January 1, 1949, you are required to have a hunter safety card before you can purchase a hunting license.

All programs, services and activities of the Colorado Division of Wildlife are operated in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. If you need accommodation due to a disability, contact Justin Krall, Doug Purcell or Mike Reid at 264-2131, or Don Volger at 264-4151, Ext. 239. To assure that the Division of Wildlife can meet your needs, please notify them at least seven days before the class.

Class size will not be limited and no preregistration is required unless you need accommodations due to a disability.

This course is sponsored by the Pagosa Springs Police Department in conjunction with the Archuleta County Sheriff's Department and the Colorado Division of Wildlife.


Stocking program a success in Pagosa Springs

By James Robinson

Staff Writer

Pagosa Springs anglers will get a chance to take home a trophy trout, due to the recent stocking efforts of the Pagosa Quality Fishing Project.

Last Thursday, the group stocked 200 pounds of 14-inch trout, 200 pounds of two to three pound trout, and 100 pounds of six to eight pound trout, in the San Juan River between the Pagosa Springs Chamber of Commerce and River Center.

While showing one of the football-sized rainbow trout to curious onlookers before it was released into the river, Thaddeus Cano, an organizer of the project, praised the girth and vigor of the trout but later lamented, "The big fish didn't make it in on this trip."

Cano was referring to the 10 to 12 pound trophy cutbows that were originally planned for last Thursday's stocking, but had to be rescheduled for later in the summer.

Cano said he expected 200 pounds of those trophy-sized fish to arrive July 13 along with 250 pounds of two to three pound trout. Two weeks after that, Cano said, they will stock again.

He said the project began about six years ago and Larry Fisher and Herb Stipe had been instrumental in getting the project off the ground and in keeping it going over the years.

Cano said he has watched the program develop due largely to community support and a strong donor base. He said this year's donations had enabled them to meet their 2005 funding goal of $5445, and that it appears donations might exceed their expectations.

He said three years of strong community support had changed the tempo of the program.

"We're in our third year of a consistent stocking program," Cano said.

Cano said the project's goal was to create a fun, productive and potential trophy-catching fishing environment for anglers on the San Juan River through town.

"These fish are for everyone to catch and enjoy - locals, tourists, everyone," Cano said.

Cano said high water made last Thursday's stocking tricky in some parts of the river and that they had to use special tactics.

"We stocked with a kayaker crossing the river with trash bags because the river was so high," Cano said.

In other parts of the river, near the Chamber of Commerce Visitor Center, they carried the fish to the water inside large plastic trash cans.

Cano said the trout, primarily rainbows and cutbows, were from Riverbend Trout Farms in Monte Vista and that they were Whirling Disease free.

On Thursday, after hearing the size and volume of the fish being released, one eager out-of-town angler asked Cano if he could have a crack at the freshly stocked trout on his last day in Pagosa Springs.

"Usually it takes one to two days for the fish to start feeding, but you never know," Cano said.

Cano added that, during that time, the trout may move up to a quarter mile to seek cover.

That optimistic angler was seen later in the day, plying the river with fly rod in hand, hoping for tales of a trophy trout to take back to Texas.


Dear Editor:

Last Friday, July 1, my husband and I were driving home to San Antonio after having spent a lovely vacation week near Vallecito Reservoir. At about nine o'clock in the morning, about eight miles away from Pagosa Springs, everything changed. A deer suddenly leapt onto our front windshield and its body wrapped around the diver's side of the car. The windshield was shattered and the side window was completely gone. The inside of our car and all of our belongings were covered in glass and my husband's face was bleeding severely. We managed to pull over to the side of the highway. Within minutes, a young woman named Angela had stopped behind us and went for help since we were out of cell phone range. Another area couple stopped also and helped us brush off glass and waited with us until Trooper Rivera arrived to assure us that we and our vehicle would be safe.

From the moment of the accident, every single person from Pagosa Springs was incredible. Thad and Jodi from EMS were reassuring and helpful as they tended to injuries. Dan, the nurse who did an expert job of stitching my husband's face, was funny and compassionate. Reggie from Piedra Automotive, who towed our car, actually came by the hospital and then gave us a ride to the shop where the car was safely locked up. The owner, Bill, helped us find a rental car through Caroline at Enterprise and Robin at Dollar so we could get home as soon as possible. Bill also gave us good advice about having the car repaired. It's now in good hands with Derrick at Allen's Auto Body, who has offered to help in any way, and we expect to return sometime next week to pick it up.

We are so grateful to everyone for helping us and we will always count our blessings for being close to Pagosa Springs when the accident happened. You have a wonderful community and we will always remember how you made a terrifying experience much better.


Lyn and Michael Belisle

San Antonio, Texas



Dear Editor:

Although I appreciate Mr. Richard Bloom's kudos in his letter to the editor in the June 23 edition of the SUN, I feel I must make a clarification. His letter seems to imply my endorsement of the Road Warrior county commissioner individually, and also in her active struggles against the other two County Mothers. The fact is, I actively campaigned against Ms. Shiro in support of Nan Rowe, who I still think would make an excellent county commissioner. I am not a Schiro supporter in any way. I am not sure that a recall of all three of the Mothers wouldn't be a step in the right direction for Archuleta County, based on their actions, and more importantly, their inactions.

Roy K. Boutwell

Wichita Falls, Texas


River festival

Dear Editor:

Just wanted to say thank you to Jenni, Laura and the other wonderful volunteers who let us enjoy the River Fest June 25 in the park. It was such a good time, a huge success and something to look forward to in summer of 2006. I really hope not much is changed. After waiting for 15 or 20 minutes I had the most delicious hamburger I have ever put in my mouth. Once again the unbelievably generous merchants came through with donations of food and prizes.

I love this little town - may its magic always be present.

Cindy Gustafson


Under control?

Dear Editor:

Your June 30 SUN editorial offered insignificant "Food for Thought."

Actually, this Polish carnivore is more prone to only certified "Grade A" American Kennel Club Labrador retriever filet.

Question: can one correctly take for granted from your editorial paean that you are in favor of free expression provided it's kept rigidly under control? Now that is sincerely commendable and highly compassionate.

Note: I was going to purchase a copy of "The Power of a Positive Civil Dialogue," and then, suddenly, I had a conflict idea; what the hell good would it do?

Jim Sawicki

Editor's note: Please see "Do something," below.


Thanks for Fourth

Dear Editor:

Each year I am reminded that the Fourth of July brings out the best Pagosa Springs has to offer. Obviously, we live in one of the most beautiful locations on the planet, but I'm referring to our people. More than 100 residents donated countless hours to put on the paramount celebration of the year. Thousands enjoyed the rodeo, parade, arts and crafts festival, carnival and fireworks. Visitors and locals strolled the streets of Pagosa, sharing the special time with old friends and new. A wonderful tradition.

I extend my sincere and heartfelt thanks to all the folks who made it possible. A complete list would fill the page, but then each individual contribution would be just another name, and we all know they are not simply names on a list. Thank God! I hope those who enjoyed the fruits of that labor take the time to show appreciation to someone personally. Don't forget members of the Rotary Club, the Red Ryder Rodeo Committee, the Colorado Mounted Rangers, the Kiwanis Club, the Chamber of Commerce, the Colorado State Patrol, the American Legion, the Town Parks and Recreation Department, the Town Street Department and my staff at the police department. Thank you Pagosa Springs!


Donald D. Volger

Chief, Pagosa Springs Police Department


Do something

Dear Editor:

I totally agree with your editorial last week. And happily, you are the one who can actually do something about the ugly character assassinations that continually appear in The SUN. I have never understood why you choose to print the kind of nasty hate mail that you do. It does nothing but beget more hate. You could choose to stop it. I think you like to "stir the pot."

Wynn Wasinger

Editor's note: Please see "Under control?," above.



Dear Editor:

I just had the pleasure of traveling throughout the southwest part of Colorado for the first time after living in Colorado for more than 20 years. But I left Pagosa Springs with the feeling that I was unwelcome.

It's hard to pinpoint an exact source for this assumption. Maybe it was the rolling of the eyes from the waitress when we asked for water (not because we are cheap, but because alcohol or sugar drinks or caffeine did not sound appetizing). Maybe it was the audible sigh from another waitress when we asked for a box for leftovers. And then there was the overheard comment, "I've lived here for 27 years, it was nice before the people came."

And there were the stares from people on the street, like a space alien had just landed. I dress as conservatively as any other dad on the holiday weekend with knee length shorts and Chaco sandals. Maybe they wondered why I didn't have three kids in tow.

Regardless of race, color, religion or politics, a guest to Pagosa Springs is a person traveling with money. And that money will help keep existing jobs and to create new jobs. I trust that is a goal of the politicians and business leaders of Pagosa Springs. And then the front line service staff need to realize that the people are not a pain in their day but the very reason that they have a job and the money to pay for their own life in a mountain paradise.

Kudos go to The Springs Resort staff and a liquor store clerk.

Jeffrey Willet


Community News

UU service to feature self-realization meditation

On Sunday, July 10, the Pagosah Unitarian Universalist Fellowship will hold a special "self-realization" meditation service, conducted by Margaret Burkesmith, a local yoga teacher and practitioner of many years.

She explains that a few gentle stretches, along with controlled breathing, will create a calming, peaceful connection with body and mind. This will lead into kindness (maitri) through a meditation technique called "Samatha-Vipashyana."

The session will finish with another technique which is used to enhance a union with the five elements, relating them to each participant.

The service and child care will begin at 10:30 a.m. in the Pagosah Unitarian Universalist Fellowship Hall, Unit 15, Greenbrier Plaza. Turn east on Greenbrier Drive off of North Pagosa by the fire station, then left into the parking lot and look for the big sign. All are welcome.

For more information, call Phyl Daleske at 731-4589.


Visit Chimney Rock and take a trip into history

By Karen Aspin

Special to The PREVIEW

Why do locals love Chimney Rock?

Let a "Chimney Rocker" totally in"spire" you to visit our local National Monument to experience this sacred Native American site with its spectacular features.

Designated an Archaeological Area and National Historic Site in 1970, Chimney Rock lies on 4,100 acres of San Juan National Forest land surrounded by the Southern Ute Indian Reservation.

The ancestral Puebloans occupied this area approximately one thousand years ago. The site has been declared a Chacoan "outlier." Several archeologists, beginning in the 1920s, have excavated some of this most intriguing area.

Why did these people settle here? How did they live on such a high pinnacle? What caused them to leave? Was this a spiritual site, an astronomical one? Various beliefs and theories abound.

Visit the site and learn what is known and make discovering the truth and beauty that lie within this beautiful place a personal journey of continued exploration.

The Chimney Rock National Monument is located three miles south of U.S. 160, on Colo. 151. The entrance fee is $8 for adults, $2 for children ages 5-11, with free admission for children under 5.

The Chimney Rock Interpretive Association (CRIA) will sponsor an educational booth July 2-4 at the Pagosa Springs Arts and Crafts Festival in Town Park. Stop by our booth and learn more about Chimney Rock, its programs and satisfying volunteer opportunities.

For more information about Chimney Rock and upcoming fests, dances, concerts, full-moon and major lunar standstill programs, call (970) 883-5359 between the hours of 9 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., visit the Web site at: www.chimneyrockco.org, or stop by our Fourth of July fest booth at Town Park, where information about the ancestral Puebloan archaeological site will be available from local CRIA volunteers, who work in partnership with the U.S. Forest Service, San Juan National Forest.


"Oklahoma!" - three shows remain in run

By John Graves

Special to The PREVIEW

Even though Rodgers and Hammerstein's "Oklahoma!" is generally considered to be the acme in the evolution of the American stage musical, it is not frequently presented, since the production values it demands constitute a rather daunting challenge for a nonprofessional theatrical organization.

However, the Pagosa Springs Music Boosters are meeting this challenge this summer with a full scale production of the classic in the Pagosa Springs High School Auditorium.

Remaining dates are tonight, tomorrow and Saturday and performances feature a cast of 32 actors, singers and dancers, as well as a 20-piece orchestra.

Director/choreographer Dale Morris is assisted by stage manager Janna Voorhis in coordinating the complexities of what goes on backstage during the performances.

A cadre of committed craftsmen (and women), contribute tirelessly to make the Pagosa Springs High School stage into the frontier territory which is soon to become the state of Oklahoma.

This dedicated group includes: lights, Scott Farnham; costumes, Candy Flaming; costume mistress, Donna Clark; sets, Lisa Hartley and Michael DeWinter; and additional crew Natalia Clark, Dale Schwicker, Mark Truax, Claire Versaw and Danielle Jaramillo.

Probably the largest number of musicians ever assembled for a Pagosa musical production brings the orchestrated score of Rodgers and Hammerstein's masterpiece to life.

Here's how they line up by instrument: flute, Joy Redmon and Ashley Portnell; oboe, Sue Martin; bassoon, Valley Lowrance; clarinet, Kathy Baisdon, Tim Bristow and Al Olson; alto saxophone, Bob Nordman and Melinda Fultz; tenor saxophone, Bruce Andersen; trumpet, Larry Elginer, Karen Mesikapp and Hannah Clark; French horn, Larry Baisdon; trombone, Shawna Carosello and Lowell Bynam; baritone, Karl Mesikapp; percussion, Landon Bayger and James Kirkham; and Sue Anderson on piano.

This much instrumental diversity draws from various sources. Karl and Karen Mesikapp come all the way from Ignacio. Ashley Portnell, Hannah Clark, Malinda Fultz and Landon Bayger are students, currently in the high school band, while James Kirkham is a former student. The rest of the musicians named are all members of the Pagosa's newly formed community band.

The curtain goes up at 7:30 p.m. Reserved seat tickets may be purchased at the Plaid Pony in Pagosa Springs. They are $12 for adults, $10 for seniors over 60, and $6 for students and children. For reserved tickets or more information, call Michael DeWinter at 731-5262.


Home and Garden Tour July 24

By Marti Capling

Special to The PREVIEW

Plans are nearly finalized for the fifth annual Home and Garden Tour, sponsored by the Pagosa Springs Arts Council. This year's tour is Sunday, July 24, from noon to 5.

Once again five properties have been selected, each having its own unique style and each reflecting the special interests of the owners.

While two of the homes have log exteriors, one has a more traditional interior and the other has a more contemporary feel. Each of them is located on 30-plus acre lots, providing a feel of spaciousness and privacy.

Another home is an example of earth block design and construction, also located in an area with spectacular views. Closer to the core area, we've selected a luxury town home model to serve as our reception center and to showcase the works of some of our local artists.

The final home is a multi-level contemporary structure with a stucco exterior and southwestern decor. Each home has a spacious deck, wonderful views and a wide selection of local art.

Tickets will be available soon at the Pagosa Springs Arts Center, the Chamber of Commerce, Moonlight Books and WolfTracks at $10 for members and $12 for nonmembers. Call 264-5020 for ticket information.

Plan to reserve Sunday, July 24, as a special cultural events day and attend the Home and Garden Tour in the afternoon and the American Roots Music Festival in the evening. Good things are always happening in Pagosa.


Jazz trumpeter Elginer at American Roots Festival

By Paul Roberts

Special to The PREVIEW

"Music reaches the soul. It's such a creative force. For me, the passion for playing music has always been very strong," says local musician/music educator Larry Elginer, who has performed in many top-flight jazz and classical ensembles.

Elginer's virtuoso jazz trumpet solos will be ringing through the mountains at the upcoming American Roots Music Festival, 6 p.m. Sunday, July 24, at Pagosa Lakes Clubhouse.

"I feel that music has so much to offer in our lives, whether it's through the schools or after school, whether you do it through the community, professionally or recreationally," he said. Elginer has done all of these, to the max.

Elginer's stunning musical career began with his solo trumpet performance at age 11 in Greeley, Colo. His parents recognized his musical gift and encouraged his climb through honor band programs and other advancement opportunities that rapidly unfolded for their child prodigy.

After graduating from college with a master's degree in music education, Elginer had a highly successful career directing one of the best school music programs on the West Coast for 38 years.

Elginer has the astounding ability to teach all the orchestra and band instruments. Besides conducting and performing in concert bands, orchestras and jazz bands, he is also highly regarded as a choral director.

Since moving to Pagosa two years ago, Elginer has performed several times with the popular, local ensemble Rio Jazz. His influence on the local cultural scene has also been strongly felt through his involvement with high school and community music and theater productions.

Elginer directs the Pagosa Jazz Choir and is co-director of the Pagosa Community Choir. "I love conducting and I love rehearsing," he exclaimed.

Elginer plans to tour high schools and colleges to perform concerts and direct workshops with orchestras, symphonic bands and jazz ensembles. "I really feel strongly about music," he says. Elginer conveys this to audiences through his instantly appealing style, and to his students through his contagious enthusiasm.

You can hear this fabulous trumpet player perform at the American Roots Music Festival.

The theme for the festival is early blues and jazz. John Graves, Steve Rolig, Alissa Snyder, Kimberly Judd, Paul and Carla Roberts will also be performing July 24.

Here's the schedule:

- 4 p.m. - ragtime blues guitar workshop with Steve Rolig.

- 5 - community potluck social.

- 6 - evening concert.

Tickets are $8 for adults, $7 for seniors and $12 for families. Children are admitted free of charge.

Pagosa Lakes Clubhouse is located at 230 Port Ave. in the Vista subdivision of Pagosa Lakes. Take U.S. 160 to Vista Boulevard, turn north on Vista and left on Port.

American Roots Music Festival is produced by Elation Center for the Arts. For further information, call 731-3117.


Local youngster designs county fair poster

By Jim Super

Special to The PREVIEW

Artists are visionaries, using their imaginations as the palettes to transform blank paper into an object of beauty.

Creativity is a gift given from a higher power, with endless boundaries to explore. These statements could not be truer or more representative of a local, young artist, Anthony Spinelli.

Anthony, though only 14, is a young man with skills beyond his years. He is an artist with great potential and a personality to match.

When he was asked to design the Archuleta County Fair poster by teacher and fair board member Sally High, he gladly accepted, without hesitation.

The fair board wanted to reflect our western heritage throughout the fair, and asked Anthony to use his own vision to design the poster. He took some verbal cues and from there created the 2005 Archuleta County Fair poster for display all around our county.

Anthony's gift started at a young age, according to his mother. "I save everything that my children have done, for mementos that they can have later," she said. Anthony showed me sketchpads and work produced at a very young age. I was impressed; I cannot imagine being able to draw as well as he did at the age of 6.

Although Anthony is young, he has received numerous awards for his work, usually placing first in several contests. "I have so many ribbons for placement I can't even remember how many there are," Anthony exclaimed with a grin. In 2004, Anthony won the poster contest for the Pagosa Historic Preservation Board. Most of his work has been auctioned off after a contest with the proceeds going for enrichment of the arts.

Anthony is a humble person with a lot of potential in his future. He aspires to have a career in architecture. He is also an honor student. Whatever Anthony does in his adult life, he is sure to be successful. The Archuleta County Fair Board members thank Anthony for his great work and creative vision.

The fair board poster went on display at local businesses the first week in July.

Tickets for the fair's opening ceremony Thursday, Aug. 4, went on sale at the Chamber of Commerce and the county Extension Office July 1. Tickets are $10 for preferred seating. These tickets guarantee the purchaser a front row seat for the event. We look forward to seeing you at the Archuleta County Fair.


Kimberly Judd at American Roots fest

By Paul Roberts

Special to The PREVIEW

She's sweet 16 and has loads of creative talent. She's from Pagosa, and she's going places.

She's Kimberly Judd and she will be performing at the American Roots Music Festival, 6 p.m. Sunday, July 24, at Pagosa Lakes Clubhouse.

Saxophone, clarinet and piano player, dancer and vocalist, Judd has big goals. She said, "I want to get my doctorate in music, and teach college level. My ultimate goal is to become a professional saxophone player. I also want to learn the cello and play in a big orchestra."

With Judd's enormous love and aptitude for music, these goals certainly seem within her reach. She shared some of her feelings about music:

"Music is my passion and my life. I like performing for people. I like the natural high that you get when you're performing. When I'm in an audience and I hear something that I enjoy it makes me happy, so I like bringing that to people, too. There's a lot that you can feel with music."

Judd was influential in the formation of the jazz band at Pagosa Springs High School. She also helped in the effort to support music in the schools by performing in a recent fund-raiser with Rio Jazz.

She has performed music in the orchestra for several musical theater productions and has participated in numerous band and choir concerts. Currently, she is performing in the cast of "Oklahoma!" as a dancer and vocalist.

She is an expert in the traditional American dance form, clogging, and also has a background in tap and ballet. She said, "I'd like to someday have a dance studio and teach little kids."

Judd began studying piano at the age of 5. "I don't think kids are ever too young to begin studying music," she said. Her mother, three siblings, and several aunts and uncles who all participated in various musical productions, inspired her as a child. She credits her musician mother, Janna Voorhis, for her appreciation of classical music and jazz.

Judd said her favorite music is jazz, which she loves to listen to and play. And, she said, "I enjoy meeting professional players like John Graves and Larry Elginer."

Judd will perform with professional players, including Graves and Elginer, at American Roots Music Festival. Residents and visitors are invited to see and hear this local light shine.

Tickets are $8 for adults, $7 for seniors, and $12 for families. Children are admitted free of charge. See an article on Larry Elginer in this PREVIEW for a schedule of events and a list of other performers.

American Roots Music Festival is produced by Elation Center for the Arts. For further information, call 731-3117.


Don't fence me in ... Sandy Applegate

By Erin K. Quirk

Staff writer

Artists are said to have range if, among other things, they work in different media or their work is diverse enough to appear as though different artists created it.

Sandy Applegate has range and she is another surprise treasure found right here in Pagosa Springs. She draws in colored pencil and ink, paints in watercolor, works in two and three dimensions and pens intensely-detailed abstract pieces. Right now her biggest problem lies not in creating enough work, but creating enough in one series to show to galleries.

"I have like 20 different things I want to do a series on," said Applegate, who loves to read and cook and tend to her elaborate European-style garden outside. "I do about 100 things at once I like to get a lot of things done."

It's fun walking through Applegate's Lake Hatcher home and studio. Her work hangs all over the walls and while it is diverse, after a bit of study, her style is unmistakable. Applegate does some representational work, some abstract and some more stylized work that is a combination of both. But she is not a western landscape painter. If she draws horses and cowboys, the cowboys will wear a sneaky grin, as in one she titled "Don't Fence Me In" or the horses will be drawn with just their behinds showing.

"I like to interpret the world in my own way," she said with a laugh.

Applegate moved to Pagosa Springs from Chicago where she spent many years in the corporate world as a software programmer and systems analyst. She majored in art and photography at the University of Illinois and worked in darkrooms in her early days out of college.

That darkroom time clearly informed much of her early work. A fan of cinema and stage, that work is dominated by repeating silhouettes of Charlie Chaplin and other movie stars in varying degrees of photographic exposure. Lines of gray to dark black figures control nearly all of that early work.

She has an upstairs room where her early work hangs. Walking through it is like watching a child grow. The work is hung chronologically and eventually becomes less graphically oriented and more focused on color, shape and whimsy. One later series on the wall is color pencil and watercolor study of cows and beauty queens, which she laughingly calls her "Texas series." The detail, symmetry and repetition are still there, but the growth into color is too.

The nice thing about Applegate's work is that she drifts in and out of completely different styles without losing herself in the process. Her early work is graphic and stark and her later abstract work is wild with color and shape. However, all of it is tight, detailed and accurate.

To wit, Applegate's work entitled "Seeds" is what she calls a study of either the macro or the micro - as though you could look through a telescope or a microscope and see the same thing. The work is pen and ink and color pencil and looks like a fuchsia, red and lavender fractal or surging underwater anemones. She calls these abstract pieces "loose," but they aren't, really. They are only loose in comparison to her early graphic work because tiny detail, composition and balance all come to the party.

She said the abstract work is more difficult for her than her representational pieces because she simply starts with a blank page and lets her instinct figure it out. When she starts, she said, she doesn't always know what she's drawing.

"It's harder to make them work," she said. "Everything doesn't always work out."

Another pen and ink and watercolor piece called "The Wheel of Life" features repeating figures, song lyrics - the inclusion of which is a favorite technique of hers - and thousands of tiny circles. The piece combines the best of Applegate's artistic worlds, repeating graphic figures, detail and colorful whimsy.

Right next to it on the wall hangs "After the Ball." While totally different from "Seeds" it is a good example of the combination of her styles. The repeating chorus girl figures speak to her early work and the watercolor circles behind them are more recent. The dancers are slim, long and faceless and appear to be just woman costumes hanging from chains. Applegate said this leaves the piece open to interpretation.

"It doesn't have to make perfect sense," said Applegate who recently sold the piece and said it is one of her favorites.

Applegate has no shortage of work and has begun marketing it. She has already had some success with a few galleries in a resort town in Wisconsin and is avidly seeking new markets for her work. She acknowledges that her work probably isn't what most people in Pagosa Springs are after. However a few of her pieces can be seen at The Back Door and the Pagosa Nursery Company.

What is most important to Applegate is that her work is entirely her own. She has painted Pagosa Peak and sold the painting, but that isn't where her heart is. When she looks at "Seeds" or a few of her other abstracts she said she sees something different every time and that keeps her interested.

"If I like to look at it, to me it's successful."

For more information on Applegate's work contact her at 731-9325 or at skapplegate@centurytel.net


Mountain View Homemakers to hold auction

By Natalie Tyson

Special to The PREVIEW

Mountain View Homemakers Club will sponsor its annual money-maker to benefit the many local agencies and institutions it supports throughout the year.

The potluck and meeting will take place at noon July 14 in the home of Janet Nordmann, 1925 Shenandoah Dr. Betty Schwicker will co-host.

Items to be auctioned usually include many hand-crafted objects, original artwork, collectibles, food dishes and some practical items. Rumor has it that this year a French country picnic will be offered, courtesy of gourmet cook Fran Jenkins and assistant Linda Bennett. We have heard an unusual dinner fork will be up for bid, and that Barbara Jacobs allegedly has made more beautiful decorative pillows to sell.

The gourmet picnic will be a one-time event for 16 people. Each place will be individually offered at a silent auction with a minimum bid of $20. According to our sources, the picnic will be al fresco on Fran's deck at noon, July 27. The menu features an aperitif, champagne and Chambord, ratatouille on baguette, James Beard's country paté, salad Niçoise, orange and olive salad, French rosé wine, ficellé and olive bread, assorted French cheeses and fresh fruit, tart tatin, coffee and iced tea.

Mountain View Homemakers Club is a local community service group that places emphasis on the home - which means the home community as well as members' individual homes. Monthly programs expand knowledge and interest and encourage good will. The club requires no dues, but each year members donate time and talents, work on projects and have an auction to help various entities. Club beneficiaries so far in 2005 include the Wilma Morrison Babysitting (classes) Scholarship, Four-Corners Safe House, Seeds of Learning, Ruby Sisson Library, Pine Ridge Nursing Home, Archuleta County Education Center, Hospice of Mercy, Community Assistance Program, Pagosa Outreach Connection, Archuleta County Senior Center's Home Delivery, Pregnancy Support Center, San Juan Historical Society and the Cub Scouts.

Attendance at the auction is limited to 40 people. Homemaker members and their guests have priority, but need to R.S.V.P. the hostess or co-hostess. Others wishing to attend should call Dot Kirkham, 731-2328, and leave a message to be added to the first-come, first-served waiting list. If attending the noon potluck, bring your own table service and a potluck dish to share. The auction should start around 1 p.m. Car-pooling is highly encouraged.


C.A.R.E. to hold tea, fashion show and auction

C.A.R.E., Christian Adoption Resources and Encouragement, a Pagosa Springs-based adoption ministry group, will hold an International Tea and Childrens' Fashion Show Auction July 16 at 2 p.m. at BootJack Ranch.

This event puts the "fun" in "fund-raiser." After a delightful tea time, guests will enjoy a parade of handmade children's clothing and locally donated fashions. All items in the fashion show will then be auctioned off.

If you want to support a charity whose goal is to support adoption and have a great time while doing it, this event is for you.

For ticket information call Lisa Hauger at 264-4293.


Del McCoury Band, final act at this year's folk festival

By Crista Munro

Special to The PREVIEW

The Del McCoury Band, reigning International Bluegrass Music Association Entertainer of the Year, will close the 10th annual Four Corners Folk Festival Sunday, Sept. 4.

The band's debut at the festival will mark the official end to a busy summer that's been finding the quintet - Del, sons Rob (banjo) and Ron (mandolin), bassist Mike Bub and fiddler Jason Carter - hard at work entertaining the bluegrass faithful and reaching new audiences with their trademark blend of instrumental and vocal virtuosity, cutting edge material and an energetic yet easygoing stage presence.

Regularly drawing standing room only crowds which run the gamut from tie-dyed'n'patchouli neo-hippie jammers to button-down Yuppies to suspendered good ol' boys, The Del McCoury Band may well boast the broadest, most inclusive fan base this side of the Grateful Dead.

Recent weeks have seen them appear before millions of television viewers on CMT's 100 Greatest Love Songs Concert, taped during Nashville's Country Music Association Music Festival, wow tens of thousands of listeners at the youth-oriented Telluride and Bonnaroo festivals, and revisit both the historic Ryman Auditorium, where Del made his Grand Ole Opry debut with Bill Monroe's Blue Grass Boys more than 40 years ago, and the modern Opry House, where he joined the show's distinguished cast last October. The band's summer and fall itinerary includes shows with the Grand Ole Opry American Road Show also featuring Vince Gill and Patty Loveless. The range of appearances is typical for the band, widely known as "bluegrass music's best ambassadors."

Del and the boys - already the most awarded group in bluegrass history, with eight Entertainer of the Year honors and a slew of other collective and individual trophies - are hardly resting on their laurels. This fall will see the completion of a radio special celebrating Del's career. Narrated by Grand Ole Opry announcer and long-time friend and associate Eddie Stubbs, the show will offer fans a biographical sketch of Del's achievements and plenty of McCoury music. Del was also recently featured on the TV special CMT 20 Greatest Bands which premiered in April.

Music lovers can catch the Del McCoury Band atop Reservoir Hill Sept. 4 at 7 p.m.

This year's festival will also feature the relatively new, but widely-acclaimed band Old School Freight Train. Blending jazz, Latin, Celtic, bluegrass and pop, Old School Freight Train (OSFT) creates electrifying acoustic music.

This young Charlottesville, Virginia-based group instantly carved their own unique sound, attracting a diverse audience from their beginning in 2000. After gaining a loyal local following, the band gained national recognition, touring the country and winning awards at the prestigious Telluride Bluegrass and Rockygrass Bluegrass contests.

Old School Freight Train's sound is synergistic and ultimately compelling. Banjoist Ben Krakauer, originally from Williamsburg, Virginia met mandolinist Pete Frostic who was at the time in college in Williamsburg. The two instantly had a musical connection, pushing the envelope of bluegrass.

Lead vocalist and guitarist Jesse Harper soon joined the band and recruited bassist Darrell Muller from North Carolina. The band relocated to the Charlottesville area and began to further develop their sound with the addition of fiddler Nate Leath. A North Carolina native who is currently finishing up his degree at the Berklee School of Music, Nate's poetic fiddling adds just the sound the band needed to round out their style.

OSFT released their first self-titled record in 2002. The Independent Music Awards picked up on their sound and chose them as finalists for Best Bluegrass Album of the Year. Mandolin master David Grisman heard their music in the fall of 2004 and viewed the band as "an emerging force to reckon with in today's world of acoustic music."

Old School Freight Train offers a unique musical experience that's both tangible and of superior quality, raising the bar in acoustic music. In the tradition of past festivals where undiscovered bands like Nickel Creek, The Bills and Eddie From Ohio have gone from unknown names to profoundly beloved regulars, Old School Freight Train may be the new band to watch.

Festival-goers will have multiple opportunities to catch OSFT; they'll be performing Saturday at 11:45 a.m. and Sunday at 12:45 p.m. on the main stage, and Saturday night at 11 p.m. on the late night acoustic stage.

The Four Corners Folk Festival is supported by a grant from the Colorado Council on the Arts. The Colorado Council on the Arts and its activities are made possible through an annual appropriation from the Colorado General Assembly and federal funds from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Tickets to the 10 annual Four Corners Folk Festival are available locally at Moonlight Books downtown and WolfTracks Coffee and Books in the west City Market Plaza. Tickets and additional information are available by calling (970) 731-5582 or online at www.folkwest.com.


Kids' rodeo big part of county fair

By Jim Super

Special to The PREVIEW

Rope 'em up and ride them out!

This is the raucous banter of the young cowboys and cowgirls as they enter the arena for the annual Archuleta County Fair Kids' Rodeo.

The event will be held this year at 1 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 7. There is no admission charge to attend. Locals and visitors are encouraged to join the crowd and fill the arena for this fun activity. This particular event incorporates age groups from toddlers to teens, as well as family activities and exuberant competitions.

Children 6 and under will enjoy challenges geared to their age group, with the stick horse race, mutton bustin' and the glove race. All of the mutton bustin' entries will receive a T-shirt just for participating.

Children 7-10 will enjoy the ribbon race (team event), calf riding, breakaway roping and the barrel race.

Contestants 11-13 can participate in steer riding, ribbon race, breakaway roping, and the barrel race.

Young adults, 14-19, can enter the barrel race, hitchhiking race, cow riding and team roping. They might also walk away with a handsome belt buckle or disk as a reward for placing in the events.

Immediate family members will be able to participate in the family ribbon roping. However, the steer hide drag race is open to all ages and to team members who are not members of the family.

Some events involve a "jackpot prize." The jackpot is determined by the number of entry fees for each event.

If you are a parent/guardian and your child is interested in participating in the rodeo, you must comply with the following rules:

- Parents or legal guardians must sign the consent portion of the entry form.

- All mutton bustin' entrants must wear safety helmets and vests. These will be provided for the event.

- All rough-stock entrants must wear safety vests. These will not be provided for the event.

- All entry forms must be turned in before 12:30 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 7. Entries may be turned in at the fair or mailed to: CSU County Extension Office, PO Box 370, Pagosa Springs, CO 81147.

Entry forms are available at the county Extension Office, Goodman's Department Store, The Sewing Source and Boot Hill.

If you have any questions concerning the event, contact Marti Gallo at 264-3890.

Lastly, a reminder to all residents and visitors: preferred seating tickets for The fair's opening ceremony are available at the Extension Office and the Chamber of Commerce. Tickets are $10 and guarantee front-row seating for the event. There are only 100 of these tickets and they are sure to sell out fast.

Featured performers at the opening ceremony are The Hot Strings, a local favorite with an enormous following. In addition, remember that ticket holders as well as nonrevenue attendees are eligible for some spectacular door prizes. These prizes are made possible by the generous contributions of local businesses. If you are interested in donating a gift for a door prize, contact Danna Laverty at 264-5548. For more information about the fair, go to www.archuleta countyfair.com.


Local Chatter

From soup to nuts - our July 4 parade

By Kate Terry

PREVIEW Columnist

July 4 got here and we had the annual parade. The comments varied - everything from soup to nuts, as the trite saying goes.

The beginning of the parade got attention and was appreciated by all who knew the late Faye Brown, a beloved longtime resident in Pagosa Springs who rode in the parades these last few years. Dr. Kitzel Laverty Farrah rode with her. Brown had watched Dr. Farrah grow up; their ranches were across the road from each other. Brown, who was 99 years old, passed away a few months after riding in the 2004 parade. This year, her horse was in the parade, led by Dr. Farrah. It was covered with flowers.

Now the comments made describing the parade:

"Better than last year."

"About normal."

"Best I've seen since I've lived here."

"There was a band, but it would be nice if the band had uniforms."

"It was nicer than last year; there weren't all those candidates."

"Not enough floats, but they were all clean and neat."

"The parade was totally acceptable - nobody left and the kids loved those horses."

"And there weren't any motorcycles."

"The float with the beer keg was appreciated because the founding fathers drank lots of beer."

And then there was this comment:

"On a scale of 1 to 10, I'd give it an 8."

Enough said about the July 4, 2005 parade!

Around town

Once again the Music Boosters have a winner in their production of "Oklahoma!" It is great - beautifully and skillfully directed and choreographed by Dale Morris and Lisa Hartley. And the scenery is well done. The talent holds together in Pagosa Springs.

The Rev. Dr. Robert G. Pope, rector of St. Patrick's Episcopal Church, will be the guest speaker at the July meeting of the Archuleta County Genealogical Society. The meeting is at 1:30 p.m. in the Family History Library at the LDS Church. Dr. Pope has a doctorate in American studies from Yale University. He taught for 25 years at the New York University in Buffalo and has written two books on the pilgrims.

Fun on the run

Teacher: "George Washington not only chopped down his father's cherry tree, but also admitted doing it. Now, do you know why his father didn't punish him?"

Johnny: "Because George still had the axe in his hand."


Community Center News

Community Center News A busy, fun Fourth of July

By Mercy Korsgren

PREVIEW Columnist

It was a busy, fun Fourth of July weekend.

The Patriotic Sing-along Night was again a success. Attendees enjoyed the program and there was a strong feeling and expression of warmth, pride, patriotism and respect amongst the crowd. A million thanks to American Legion Post 108, Archuleta County Fair Royalty, Chamber of Commerce, Gene Tautges (who worked many hours putting together a power point presentation about our vets and those in active duty), John Graves, Jerry Arrington, Jessica Green, Jody Cromwell and Susan Crump, KWUF, Mountain Harmony Ladies Barbershop Chorus, Pagosa Springs SUN, P.S. I Love Red Hats, Sounds of Assurance (Susie Long and Judy Patton), Gail Riley and Marvin Sacks, Harry and Phyllis Carlson, Ann Rasich and all those who brought desserts. Of course, our thanks and gratitude to our local veterans and those in active duty - we salute you all. "It was a great program", said veterans Ron Willett and Bob Dobbins.

Copies of the power point presentation are available at cost at the community center. Call 264-4152.

Coming up

Today and tomorrow, 10 a.m.-5 p.m., is the "Christmas in July Auction." The former Christmas Store invites all to this big event. They'll liquidate all inventory and everything must go. Get your holiday shopping done, early! This is a great opportunity to purchase fine quality collectibles of your choice and there are thousands of items to choose from.

USDA Rural Development Homeowners Programs. Come to an open meeting to discuss programs available for Archuleta County. Residents who have very low or low incomes and are unable to obtain conventional financing may qualify for a direct home ownership loan from this agency. Or, residents who own a home and are in the low income level and can't afford to do repairs or remove health and safety hazards may also qualify for a loan or grant from USDA Rural Development.

Anyone who cannot make the meeting or would like more information may contact (970) 565-8416, ext. 4.

Help needed

Do you have a special talent or hobby you would like to share - singing, dancing, arts and crafts, cooking, foreign language conversation group, coffee mornings, sports, etc.? We're looking for volunteers interested in forming these groups. Someone even asked me about the possibility of staring an Irish/Scottish dancing group for fun. Call me at 264-4152 if you are interested.


July 7 - PAX Christmas in July Auction, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Building Blocks 4 Health, 4:30-5:30 p.m.

July 8 - Alpine Lake Ranch HOA meeting, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.; watercolor workshop, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.; PAX Christmas in July Auction, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

July 9 - Alpine Lake Ranch HOA meeting, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.; photography workshop, 10 -11: a.m.

July 10 - Church of Christ Sunday Service, 9 a.m. -noon; Grace Evangelical Free Church Service, 9 a.m. -noon; United Pentecostal Church Service, 2-4 p.m.

July 11 - Watercolor workshop, 9 a.m. -3 p.m.; Loma Linda HOA board meeting, 7-9 p.m.

July 12 - Watercolor workshop, 9 a.m. -3 p.m.; seniors computer class, 10 a.m. -noon; seniors walking program, 11:15-11:35 a.m.; Computer Q&A with Becky, 1-4 p.m.; Creepers Jeepers meeting, 7-8 p.m.

July 13 - Watercolor workshop, 9 a.m. -3 p.m.; Wednesday bridge club, 10 a.m. -3 p.m.; Pagosa Lodge Condo Association annual meeting, 1-4 p.m.; photo club meeting, 5:30-7 p.m.; arthritis class, 6-8 p.m.; Church of Christ Bible study, 7-8 p.m.

July 14 - Building Blocks 4 Health, 4-5:30 p.m.; USDA Rural Development programs, 7-9 p.m.

The gym is open Monday to Friday, 8 a.m.-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 (PSPFC) 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 very affordable rooms for small, midsize and large groups. A catering kitchen is also available. Tables, chairs, a portable stage, a dance floor and audio visual equipment are available too. The center is located 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'll hold lost and found items for a month, then all unclaimed items will be donated to local thrift stores. Call 264-4152.


Senior News

Arthritis self-help course offered at The Den

By Musetta Wollenweber

SUN Columnist

For people with arthritis, living the most active life with the least amount of pain and disability involves becoming an active partner in their arthritis care.

The Den is offering a six week Arthritis Self-Help course beginning Wednesday, July 20, from 6-8 p.m. to encourage people affected by arthritis to be proactive in their health and well-being.

The Arthritis Self-Help Course (ASHC) is a group education program led by trained instructors designed to help you learn and practice the different skills needed to build your own individualized self-management program and gain confidence to carry it out.

Participating in and completing the six-week program will aid you in the following skills: learning and practicing the skills needed to build your own individual self-management program; gaining knowledge of different types of arthritis and osteoporosis; learning to manage pain, relaxation, stress and fatigue; gaining exercise and nutrition knowledge; developing problem-solving skills; obtaining information on doctor-patient relationships; obtaining information on the latest developments in alternative therapies.

Those with any type of arthritis, or persons in support roles, are encouraged to attend. Class size is limited to 18 participants and is filling up fast, so call The Den at 264-2167 for registration and further information. We hope you take advantage of this educational and supportive opportunity to help you overcome some of the challenges of arthritis. The course fee is $15 and is reimbursable upon completion of the class.

Catch the buzz

July is a great month to visit the Silver Foxes Den. We have lots of fun activities going on, many people are returning for the summer and there is much laughter to be had when you visit with us. Come on down and check out the buzz that is catching on. Join us for the camaraderie, the entertainment and the enjoyment of being a part of something special.

Bats in our area

Find out all about the bats in our area and exactly how nice they are to have around, really. Phyllis Wheaton from the Forest Service will get us educated Wednesday, July 13, at 1 p.m .

Durango excursion

Jump on the air-conditioned bus Thursday, July 14, and head for Durango. Go out for a bite to eat, stop in for ice cream, get to a doctor's appointment and just have plain fun - the day is yours. John will leave The Den around 8 a.m. and begin pick ups. You'll be returning to Pagosa around 4 p.m. Suggested donation is $10, sign up by Tuesday, July 12.

Automatic External Defibrillator

We are so very pleased to have recently purchased an Automatic External Defibrillator (AED) for The Den.

An AED is used in certain instances of sudden cardiac arrest and is an extremely helpful tool in increasing the chance of survival while awaiting the arrival of the Emergency Medical Services crew.

Thank you to the Upper San Juan Hospital District for facilitating this purchase and also to Norm and Joy for providing the training. Staff at The Den, as well as many of the kitchen staff, have been trained in the use of the device. We hope we are never faced with the need to use it, but find comfort in knowing it is available.

Yoga - for body and mind

It is never too late to start stretching. In fact, the older we get, the more important it becomes to stretch on a regular basis.

Yoga is one of the best ways to stretch, relax and build strength. Beginning this month, yoga classes are held Wednesdays and Qi Gong classes Fridays, both from 10 - 11 a.m. in the lounge. Join yoga and Qi Gong to stretch, relieve stress and experience a healthier mind and body.

Park picnic

Here we go again - it's time for our monthly picnic in Town Park, Friday, July 15, at noon.

Ninety-nine folks showed up for the last picnic. Can we top that? The Silver Foxes Den Southwest-Frugal Grazers of the Arboles area will be joining us this time. This great group of people hosted the mystery trip in June to Navajo Lake and what a great time that was! We'll bring out the croquet, the horse shoes and bubbles, you bring the laughter and squirt guns.

July mystery trip

Over the valley and through the woods to somewhere lovely we'll go.

It is not too far and a beautiful ride, so all aboard for an evening drive. On Thursday, July 21 we will meet at The Den at 2:45 p.m. for our monthly mystery excursion. The cost is $5 per person and transportation will be provided by the senior bus (limited seating) and car pooling. Call The Den at 264-2167 to add your name to the list by Friday, July 8, to experience the adventure and the mystery. We promise it will be a blast.

The June mystery trip was a journey to scenic Navajo State Park where we were warmly welcomed by the Frugal Grazers in Arboles - The Den's southwest extension. Approximately 60 people attended the potluck picnic in the state park and participated in informative tours and walks. Special thanks to Bob and Mary Tearnan and Jo Carole for all their effort in making the trip a success. Everyone had a great time meeting new friends and enjoying the beautiful outdoors.

Medicare drug insurance

Have limited income? Social Security can help with Medicare prescription costs. Find out if you are eligible by attending one of the following workshops to gain knowledgeable information on the new Medicare drug card at the Silver Foxes Den Senior Center at the community center Tuesday, July 12, at 1 p.m. and Tuesday, July 19, at 5:30 p.m. And remember, if you ever have any questions or need assistance, please visit with our well-informed Medicare Counselors Mondays at The Den, 11 a.m.- 1 p.m.

Activities at a glance

Friday, July 8 - Qi Gong 10 a.m; blood pressure checks 11 a.m. - noon; gym walk 11:15; Senior's Inc. board meeting 1 p.m.

Monday, July 11 - Medicare Counseling 11 a.m.- 1 p.m.; gym walk 11:15; Bridge 4 Fun, 1 p.m., all levels welcome.

Tuesday, July 12 - Basic computer instruction 10:30 a.m.; gym walk 11:15 a.m.; Canasta 1 p.m., all levels welcome; Social Security and Medicare drug insurance presentation.

Wednesday, July 13 - Yoga in Motion 10 a.m.; Pinochle, 1 p.m., all levels welcome; Forest Service presentation on bats, 1 p.m.

Thursday, July 14 - Durango excursion.

Friday, July 15 - Picnic in the park with guests from Arboles, the Silver Foxes Den Southwest-Frugal Grazers, noon.


Suggested donation $2.50 for ages 60-plus, all others $4.50.

Salad bar everyday - 11:30 a.m.

Friday, July 8 - White chili with chicken, asparagus, corn bread and sherbet.

Monday, July 11 - Meatballs with gravy, mashed potatoes, dinner roll and fruit cup with tapioca.

Tuesday, July 12 - Oven fried chicken, mashed potatoes and gravy, biscuit and apricots.

Wednesday, July 13 - Tuna noodle casserole, stewed tomatoes, plums and a brownie.

Friday, July 15 - Picnic in Town Park, BBQ rib on a bun, baked beans, coleslaw and cantaloupe.


Veteran's Corner

Return full benefits to all veterans, now

By Andy Fautheree

PREVIEW Columnist

The news media report elected officials, both in Congress and the administration in Washington D.C., were caught unaware of a budget shortfall for the VA.

Mostly, the shortfall is for VA health care, according to the reports. Latest Senate and House versions of veteran's bills to rectify the problem differ, but largely that shortfall is to the tune of $1 billion to $1.5 billion.

That's quite a shortfall!

War for benefits

Ironically, this news comes to light over the July 4 holiday weekend. I wonder if anyone back in Washington remembers why we are celebrating our nation's birthday and who we honor when we do so?

Gen. Washington and, later, President Washington pleaded to congressional leaders back in his time to take care of his soldiers and to secure promised veterans' benefits after our "War for Independence."

More than 200 years later, sounds like our leaders are still coming up short. And, at a time of war too. How shameful.

For all veterans?

Regarding the VA budget dilemma, I noted in a news article printed in the past few days that Sen. Larry Craig (Idaho) said "no veteran is going to be refused service," apparently referring to VA health care. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (Texas) more specifically said "veterans need to know that no veteran will be without his health care in 2005 (emphasis mine), nor will they be without their health care in 2006."

Return to pre 2003

These are strong words for a Congress (and Department of Veterans Affairs) that only as recently as Jan. 17, 2003, closed off VA Health Care to thousands of veterans who honorably served our country, but have no service-connected disabilities and have a income only slightly above the poverty level. Those veterans cannot enroll in VA health care today.

Shameful disregard

If you are a World War II veteran, and you and your wife are barely scraping by on Social Security and perhaps a very modest retirement income, you would not be able to enroll in VA health care today under the above guidelines.

For a veteran with one dependent, the allowable income ceiling is about $32,500 (varies according to HUD location). Total allowable income includes the spouse's income, but the spouse is not eligible for the benefit. Talk about a marriage penalty. Another shame.

Income limits

Prior to Sept. 17, 2003, any honorably discharged veteran could enroll in VA health care, regardless of income or disabilities. Veterans enrolled prior to that date are "grandfathered" into the VA health care system. After that date, they must meet the income restriction to qualify.

Not measured in dollars

Perhaps our great "fathers" in Washington plan to return VA health care to all honorably discharged veterans, as it should be. It is a benefit veterans have earned and were promised by our elected representatives, regardless of income.

An individual's call to serve in the military and perhaps to die for this country was not measured by their income, and neither should veterans' benefits be measured by their income.

Return full benefits

Return full benefits to all veterans. It is the least our nation can do for those who proudly served.


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. Phone number is 247-2214. Albuquerque VAMC phone number is (800) 465-8262.

Further information

For information on these and other veterans' benefits please call or stop by the Archuleta County 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 from 8 to 4 Monday through Thursday, Friday by appointment. Bring your DD Form 214 (Discharge) for registration with the county, application for VA programs, and for filing in the VSO office.


Arts Line

Rodeo photo show continues, calendars available

By Kayla Douglass

PREVIEW Columnist

We hope you'll take the opportunity to stop by the Town Park Art Gallery this month to view an exhibit of rodeo photography - "Extreme emotion of the Ride." The show features mostly black and white photographs taken by Wendy Saunders during actual rodeo events, including the Denver National Western Stock Show, the Greeley Stampede and National Western Finals (Las Vegas). Through the photographs, you'll experience rodeo before, during and after the ride.

Saunders has been a photojournalist covering life's events for over 25 years. She custom prints black and white images in her darkroom (almost a lost art in today's world) then hand selects framing which best presents the image. Each image is from a limited collection of 100 prints.

American Cowboy Magazine featured several of the images in their April 2004 edition. Saunders' images go beyond the "ride" of rodeo, as she photographs moments before and after the action. For a sneak peak of the show visit www.wensaunders.com and click the RODEO button.

The exhibit continues to July 30.

Calendar now available

This is the first year for a Pagosa Springs Arts Council calendar produced by local artists, the content reflecting Pagosa Country.

This 14-page, full-color calendar features images for the twelve months of the year as well as a cover image.

Works featured are from local artists Bruce Anderson, J. D. Kurz, Jan Brookshier, Sabine Baeckman-Elge, Jeanine Malaney, Jeff Laydon, Ginnie Bartlett, Claire Goldrick, Barbara Rosner and Tom Lockhart. Artwork includes photography, oil, fabric art, watercolor and mixed media.

The 2006 calendars are available through the Arts Council at a price of $9.95 plus tax for nonmembers and $8.95 plus tax for PSAC members. This is the first season for what will be and annual Pagosa Country Scenic calendar; stop by and pick up yours now. Don't forget, they make great Christmas gifts.

Watercolor workshop

The Basics of Watercolor for Absolute Beginners is again being offered by Denny Rose and Ginnie Bartlett July 11, 12, and 13 in the community center 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m.

Cost is $123.50 for members and $130 for others. Bring your lunch.

This is your opportunity to learn all of the things you wished you had been taught when you first started painting in watercolor. This workshop will cover brushes, their care and how to use them to make the marks you need to create your own painting; watercolor papers, what surface to use, what weight to buy; pigments, how to mix colors, properties of colors; and so much more about each item of our equipment. Each day will begin with lessons and handouts on a given subject and the afternoon will be spent on creating a painting utilizing the points from the morning's lesson using the overhead mirror and the follow-me format.

This workshop is for adults who have always wanted to try their hand at watercolor but were afraid to attend other workshops. It is a chance to learn to paint with others who are afraid they have no talent, or who have struggled to learn on their own with limited success.

Learn the basics, especially the things you need to know about materials and techniques to begin the process of creating your own works of art. There is lots of individual attention and assistance.

This is the first of three workshops to be offered this summer. Basics II is scheduled Aug. 10-12 and Intermediate I Sept. 12-14. For additional information on the content of the workshop you can call Ginnie at 731-2489 or Denny at 731-6113.

Class size is limited so sign up early at the Pagosa Springs Arts Council building in Town Park or call the council at 264-5020. Materials list will be available when you register.

Home and garden tour

It's time to get ready for the next big PSAC event. If you've been checking the calendar at the end of this column, you'll know that the Home and Garden Tour has been scheduled for July 24. This will be the fifth annual Home and Garden Tour, and once again we have five lovely properties scheduled for your viewing pleasure, along with a new feature this year. Flyers will be available and tickets will go on sale soon. Save the date, and watch this column for more information

Juried art exhibit

How would you like to win $1000?

That's the first-place award for the second annual Juried Art Show; second place is $500; third place $200 and People's Choice is $100.

Eligibility: Watermedia, oil, pastels and drawings.

All work must be original in concept and must have been created without the assistance of an instructor. All work must be dry, properly framed and wired for hanging. Exceptions are allowed for work specifically intended to be unframed.

Size limit is 4' X 4', including mat and frame. Limit of two entries per artist. All entries must be for sale.

PSAC will retain 30-percent commission on all sales. Artwork is to be dropped off between July 30 and Aug. 1 at Wild Spirit Art gallery. Entry fees: PSAC member $15 one entry, $25 for two. Nonmembers $20 for one entry and $30 for two. Entry form with complete checklist is available through PSAC.

Joye Moon workshop

Joye Moon will once again conduct a four-day watercolor workshop for the Pagosa Springs Arts Council. She will be present a Plein Aire (painting outdoors) workshop Aug. 29-Sept. 1.

This fast-paced class will take us to a new location each day, 9:30 a.m.- 4:30 p.m . The community center will serve as our back-up studio space in case of inclement weather. You will learn the ins and outs of painting outdoors. The class will deal with how to create textures found in nature, perspective, and how to easily paint mountains, rock, creeks, grasses and beautiful skies. Joye will demonstrate techniques at each location several times during day and prides herself in giving each student individual attention. There will be a gentle yet informative critique at the end of each day.

Don't miss this one-time opportunity to paint en plein aire with Joye Moon. Cost for the four days $is 200 for PSAC members and $225 for nonmembers. Cost per day: is $55 for members, $60 for nonmembers. Space is limited, so sign up early. Call 264-5020.

A note from Joye: "Hello fellow watercolorists. I'd like to personally invite you to join me for a four-day watercolor workshop. We will paint outdoors but use the community center for finishing paintings at the end of the day as well as critiques. I'm really happy to be asked back for the third time to teach in such a beautiful part of our country and for such a fun group of artists. If you have take a class from me in the past, you know that I tailor each class to meet your needs. You will once again be getting all new creative information and techniques. Please know that this class will be completely different from the past studio classes I have presented to you. I hope the timing for this class works with your schedules and that you can join me for this unique experience. I had a chance last time to paint outdoors while in Pagosa Springs and it was truly a wonderful experience! I have many of these paintings on my Web site in the 2005 Internet exhibit. Please check that out at www.joyemoon.com. Hope to see you all in August!"

Photography workshop

When we speak of multiple exposures, we mean making more than one exposure on a single frame of film.

Multiple exposures can be used to create many different in-camera effects. One such effect emulates the appearance of fine impressionistic paintings. We will discuss this technique as well as others at this special workshop. A "Guide to Multiple Exposure Photography" authored by the presenter will be provided to those who attend. Topics will include the estimation of correct exposure for making multiple exposure images.

The workshop will take place Saturday, July 9, from 10 to 11 am. Immediately following the workshop, there will be a two-hour field trip to a suitable nearby location to practice multiple exposure techniques.

Bring a camera that is capable of making multiple exposures. This would be a camera that allows specific multiple exposure settings (check your manual), or one that allows an override so that the film does not advance when cocking the shutter. A tripod would also be handy, but not necessary, for the field trip.

The workshop is free to Pagosa Springs Photography Club members. A $10 fee will be charged to nonmembers. If you wish to attend, please send an R.S.V.P. to Al Olson at a.c.olson@CenturyTel.net or call 731-9801.

Lockhart workshop

The Arts Council is proud to sponsor Tom Lockhart, well-known oil painter, in his first Pagosa Springs oil painting workshop, set for July.

A Colorado native, Lockhart was born and raised in Monte Vista. His love for nature and the outdoors is evident in his paintings. Striving to convey a feeling for light and atmosphere is always a challenge for any artist, but for Lockhart it is even more challenging because he works in oils, pastels, and watercolors. He enjoys painting his local surroundings but also travels throughout the United States to capture additional images with brush and paint. He travels the southwest canyons of Arizona and Utah and the villages of northern New Mexico as well as the Rocky Mountains and the coast of Maine. He looks for every opportunity to search for new and inspiring subject matter, often painting on location.

Lockhart has been included in many national and regional juried exhibitions and has won numerous awards including Region III Winner for the National Arts For the Parks. He is a member of the prestigious Northwest Rendezvous (NWR), a group of 44 of the country's top artists. He is a Signature member of The Oil Painters of America and Rocky Mountain Plein Aire Painters. He has received the Director's Choice Award and an Award of Excellence at Rocky Mountain Plein Air Painters in Estes Park. Lockhart has also been included in the Colorado Governor's Show in Loveland and the Greeley Western Stampede Show. He was chosen by Watercolor Magazine and the Forbes' to paint for a week at the Forbes Trinchera Ranch, and then to exhibit his watercolor paintings in their galleries in New York City and San Francisco. He was named Colorado Artist of the Year for Ducks Unlimited and his art has helped benefit the Colorado Wildlife Society. "Subliminal Drama", an article about Tom, was featured in Art of the West Magazine. He was also featured in Watercolor Magazine's, "Colorado Markings", and an article about the Forbes Trinchera painting trip.

Lockhart has his own gallery and studio, La Casa De Luz, in Monte Vista and galleries in the Southwest, Rocky Mountains, and Maine represent him. To view a sample of Tom's work go his Web site: easleart@fone.net.

The workshop includes the basic fundamentals of design, color, value, mass and perspective. Applying this acquired knowledge to painting the landscape both outdoors and in the studio will make painting easier and more fun. He will help each workshop participant with the specific needs by strengthening their strong points and help improve on their weaknesses. Attendees will enjoy the beauty of the Rocky Mountains and the surrounding area. Lockhart will demonstrate as much as possible. Some experience is required,

Class with Betty Slade

Due to the popularity of Betty's oil and watercolor workshops, she will continue teaching one day a month, offering instruction to interested oil painters and watercolorists.

The oil class is the first Thursday of each month and is held from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. at her lower Blanco Dove Retreat. All levels from beginner to advanced are welcome.

The intermediate watercolor class will be held the first Friday of the month at the community center, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.

Cost is $35 for the day; bring your own supplies and lunch.

It's best to make a reservation by calling PSAC at 264-5020, but drop-ins are always welcome.

Photo club

The Pagosa Springs Photography Club will resume its meeting schedule Wednesday, Sept. 14, at 5:30 p.m. in the art room at the community center.

The tentative program schedule includes a presentation by Paul Boyer, of Durango, at the September meeting; "Digital Basics," by Bruce Andersen, for October; "Family Photos/Scrapbook" for November; and a Christmas party with show and tell in December.

In conjunction with every meeting, the club holds a photo competition for club members. There are two competition categories: an open category where any subject is allowed, and a theme category where the subject must conform to the stated theme.

To assist members and prospective members in preparing prints for the theme competition, the club is announcing in advance the themes scheduled for each month. The theme for September is "Summer," for October it is "Balloons." November's theme is "Fall Color," December's is "Multiple Exposure. January is "Holidays," February is "Winter," March is "Sunrise/Sunset," April is "Green" and May is "Wild Flowers." Following the May meeting, there will be a summer recess until the competition begins again in the fall.

Interested photography enthusiasts are welcome to attend their first club meeting at no charge. Any and all are invited to join for a very modest annual fee. For more information, contact club president Jim Struck at 731-6468 or jim@perfassoc.com.

 Ouray invitational

The Ouray County Arts Association invites you to participate in the 45th annual Artists' Alpine Holiday, Aug. 6-13 at the Ouray Community Center.

Registration deadline is July 18.

This is a national juried exhibition open to all artists. This year's judge is Lee Johnson, a retired professor emeritus at Western State College.

First, second, and third place prizes will be awarded based on the number and quality of entries in the various categories, as justified in the opinion of the juror.

First place is $500; second is $250, third is $100. The award for Best of Show is $1000.

Student work will be judged and shown in a separate category, awards totaling $100. Also, The Ouray County Arts Association and the Mildred M Baker Memorial will each purchase an exceptional work for the permanent collections. The following will also purchase pieces for their collections: Attorney's Title Agency, Citizens State Bank, and First National Bank. Contact the Ouray County Arts Association for forms and other information at www.ourayarts.org, Or call DeAnn McDaniel (970) 325-4372, Gary Wade (970) 252-9095 or Laurie A Bunten (970) 325-0808.


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

All exhibits are shown in the PSAC Gallery at Town Park, unless otherwise noted.

June 30 - July 30 - Wendy Saunders photography exhibit.

July 7 - Oil painting with Betty Slade, 9 a.m. Blanco Dove Retreat, $35.

July 8 - Watercolor painting with Betty Slade, 9 a.m. community center, $35.

July 9 - Multiple exposure photography workshop, 9 a.m. community center.

July 11-13 - Beginner I, the Basics, watercolor workshop with Denny and Ginnie, 9:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. community center.

July 16 - Drawing with Randall Davis, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. community center, $35

July 20 - 23 - Tom Lockhart oil workshop, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. community center.

July 24 - PSAC Home and Garden Tour.

July 27 - Watercolor club, 10 a.m. community center.

Aug. 4 - 31 - 2005 Juried Art Exhibit.

Aug. 29 - Sept. 1 - Joye Moon plein aire watercolor workshop, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. community center.

September - Celebrities Cook for the Arts and art auction.

Sept. 14 - Photo club meeting, 5:30 p.m. community center.

Sept. 1-29 - Watercolor club exhibit.

Sept. 1- 28 - Juried art exhibit.

Sept. 29 - Oct. 31 - Fine woodworking and Betty Slade student oil painters exhibit.

October - Artist studio tour.

November - 2005 gallery tour.

December - Possible Festival of Trees in conjunction with the community center.

Artsline is a communication vehicle of the Pagosa Springs Arts Council. For inclusion in Artsline, send information to PSAC by e-mail psac@centurytel.net. We would love to hear from you regarding suggestions for Artsline. Events in surrounding areas will be included when deemed of interest to our readers.


Food for Thought

Let's get back to basics on the Fourth

By Karl Isberg

PREVIEW Columnist

What's the Fourth of July all about, if not setting off ear-drum-shredding explosions and blowing various things to smithereens?

Yeah, I know: Independence Day. Creation of a nation, etc.

Not that I don't appreciate that aspect of the Fourth but, really, why get excited if you can't blow something up?

We've lost our touch as a people. Our nation's birth involved blowing things up and we've done a darned good job blowing things up ever since. But, we've allowed dour, sour-puss lawmakers to pass laws - ostensibly for our own protection - banning the ordinary Joe from igniting things that explode. We've retreated from our heritage. And, in my opinion, we're the worse for it.

We've got to do something to reverse the trend. At least fire some rounds into the air, unload some ordinance. Do some semi-automatic skywriting. Touch off a cap or two under a stump.

It's difficult to do these days. Discharge anything of consequence, you've got the cops at the door. They roust you, confiscate your weapons and explosives, thump you about the head and shoulders for a few minutes, toss you in a patrol car, haul your sorry butt downtown, book you, perhaps embellish the occasion with a cavity search then toss you in a ramshackle holding cell with a gaggle of one-fanged miscreants dressed in sleeveless T-shirts awaiting prelims on third-degree assault charges.

I hate when that happens. And, believe me, it doesn't get any easier the older you get.

With our society's current punitive approach, celebrating the Fourth just isn't the same anymore.

To see anything significant explode, you have to go to a park or a stadium and sit on your thumbs while some overly cautious pinhead with a license and a protective suit sets off pre-programmed pyrotechnic displays.

Where's the fun in that?

Why can't a guy purchase some M-80s or a case of cherry bombs and do the work himself? Well, for one thing, it's so hard to find these once-common delights, you might as well be looking for a kilo of high-grade China white.

But, in a bigger sense, the world has become a dry and wrinkled place, full of people who are, literally and figuratively, afraid of losing an eye.

It certainly wasn't that way when I was a kid; it was a purely Darwinian situation.

Back when I was in junior high school, a willing consumer could obtain pretty much anything he needed, given he had the cash. Convoys of cars piloted by duck-tailed juvenile delinquents in their late teens sped northward from Denver on a daily basis, beginning in early spring, crossing the border, entering the most enlightened state in the Union - Wyoming - where large, rickety stands lined both sides of the highway scant yards past the state line. Those stands, and their friendly owners, offered every explosive known to man that wasn't controlled by the Department of Defense.

Denver's duck-tailed dervishes brought tons of items back to the city and set up shop in the dark alleyways in downtown Denver, the alleys adjacent to Curtis and Larimer streets, there to peddle their illicit and highly exciting wares. Wholesale.

Egad, it was paradise for an explosion-happy, gap-toothed fat kid from South Denver.

I would take the No. 8 downtown with Chas, Amos, Walsh and Fabrizio and we would make a day of it. First, to the Paramount or the Orpheum for a movie. Then to Bauer's for something tasty, (the guys gobbled ice cream sodas and sundaes - I went through the cafeteria line and procured a bowl of macaroni and cheese). Perhaps a stop at the Walgreens on 16th Street for a slice of the worst pizza ever made, then it was off to the sinister turf in lower downtown - a world ruled by a gang of terrifying, degenerate dropouts and reform school rejects, all wearing red jackets, white T-shirts and scuffed penny loafers, all carrying switchblades they purchased in the pawn shops on Larimer.


And all facilitated easy access to what we so dearly wanted: M-80s, cherry bombs, black cats, pop-bottle rockets.

Since we were among the few from our part of town who dared make the trip to this evil and threatening domain, when we returned with the goods, we were pretty darned notable guys around William Byers Junior High School.

If you heard a loud report anywhere in the vicinity of the school, you knew who made the noise.


We got a significant measure of respect in the hallways. Seventh-graders asked us to tell them stories about the exotic and potentially deadly places we visited, the sinister characters we knew.

Guys pleaded to accompany us when we placed an M-80 under a tin can, lit the fuse and sent the can skyward like a raggedy space vehicle piloted by a drunken astronaut. Or when we demolished giant carp in the south lake at Washington Park with a salvo of cherry bombs with waterproof fuses.

Even Karen G. - she of the pouty lips and stunning premature development - looked at yours truly in a special way as I waddled down the hallway. I was packing some serious heat.

All would have gone well, but for me and Amos. Call it a predisposition, but there came a time, with the whining and pleading and begging of our peers, that Amos and I decided we had a promising business prospect on our hands.

"You know," said Amos, fondling his poke of gun powder-loaded goodies, "we could turn a good profit here, you and me."

"Yes," I replied. "Funny, but I've been thinking we could triple our investment if we established - what would we call it? - a store. We can make our locker on the second floor our retail outlet. We buy low, we sell high."


We collected our coins, put together all the scratch we could find and made a big buy. We stopped firing off our inventory and started selling it.


Two things happened: First, Amos and I started making some serious bucks for eighth-graders. We invested in more inventory and soon our locker on the second floor was crammed full of flimsy cardboard containers loaded with mini-bombs - fish killing fireballs and things that went sparkly on a dark summer night.

Second: Gosh, we were well liked! Even by the menacing crew at St. Francis de Sales, down the way on Alameda Avenue. All of a sudden, the thugs weren't stalking us at the bus stop, waiting to pounce on us and deposit our trousers on an electric line. We were popular with Catholics!

It was a story worthy of Forbes magazine.

"Amos and Karl - you want fireworks already?"

There were afternoons in May when our particular section of south Denver sounded like Berlin, 1945, as the Russians pressed toward the bunker.

But, oh, like the products we peddled, we were brilliant but for an instant. A glorious business explosion was followed by poignant silence and impenetrable darkness made obvious by the absence of a once blinding, colorful light.

Bottom line: Amos got too businesslike. He succumbed to tradition.

He advertised.

Little handbills, produced with a snazzy set of rubber stamp letters and an ink pad he saw on the back cover of a Classics Comics. He even bought a special stamp that printed the graphic image of an explosion and the image graced the top of each handout. On some of the ads, Amos put three graphics of the explosion - one red, one black, one blue.

I was in Miss Mapelli's geometry class, confused by that thing with corollaries and watching some birdies cavort outside the window when the office messenger delivered the note. In an instant, the empire collapsed.

"Karl, will you stop gazing out the window and go to Mr. Morey's office."


There was no way the news could be good. You weren't summoned to Mr. Morey's office to be told you had won an award. He was the most ominous human being on the planet - the avenging angel dressed in a cheap suit, the righteous executioner.

I walked in the office door. There was Amos, sitting on the long wooden bench next to the secretary's desk, his head between his knees. We were dead meat.

Darned advertising. It was entirely too effective.

We were herded upstairs and there, in front of our locker, stood all three of the school's burly shop teachers, one of them holding a pair of bolt cutters, each of them smiling in his peculiar, cruel way.

We missed two weeks of school - expelled.

Amos had to go see the rabbi four days a week. I was confined to the basement and couldn't watch Annette and Darlene on the Mickey Mouse Club.

But, oh, it was worth it - for those few weeks of glory, when the multifaceted power of small explosive devices burnished our otherwise humdrum lives.


The Fourth brings us parades, arts and crafts shows, singalongs, blah blah blah. It's a bore. Humdrum.

The only saving grace is the annual cow and chicken slaughter at my friend Michael C's house. In other words, the only oomph on the Fourth is provided by some extraordinary chow.

Michael C is a master at the grill and the smoker - the Michelangelo of meat.

Get an invite to Michael C's place and you'll hesitate before ever grilling or smoking anything again (as in, smoking meats). The guy is from some godforsaken part of Texas, down where the heat and humidity addle a person while they're still in the womb, making them think abnormally big thoughts and talk entirely too loud. The upside of the addling is the propensity to perform miracles with flesh, cooked long and slow.

Every Fourth, Michael C cranks up a smoker the size of a three-bedroom condominium and undertakes the alchemical transformation of briskets and chicken into gold. The meats are extraordinary - the brisket tender and smoky throughout, the chicken butter soft beneath a mahogany skin. He and his wife, Berkey, have a recipe for beans that tops anything I've encountered and they produce a potato salad that is second to none. A lot of wine, cold beer and desserts and the Fourth cruises toward darkness in fine style.

But, there it ends. Instead of hurtling into a bridge abutment at a hundred miles per hour, the holiday bus runs out of gas and sputters to a ignominious end.

There are no explosions in the yard, nothing loud to startle elderly guests, nothing to obliterate rodents lurking at the perimeter of the yard, nothing to vaporize the tip of a finger.

We've become a weak, decadent people, burdened by a Byzantine legal system..

I've decided to do something about it, to take the first little step. Reflecting on the exhilaration I knew as a kid, I decided I'll find and call Amos next year. I was told he moved to Tel Aviv when he was 19 and served a couple hitches in the Israeli army during the Big Ones. Thus, he probably refined his sensibilities. I bet he has an AR-15 and some old dynamite stashed in the crawl space of his house. I'm going to talk him into making some noise with me, for old time's sake.

Perhaps we'll distribute some handbills. Clear a spot in that cell with those one-fanged geeks. Warn the jailers they'll have a cavity check on the schedule. I'm on my way next Fourth of July.

I'm going to make a statement regarding the holiday and reassert our God-given right to set off explosions.

Right after I'm done with the brisket, chicken, beans and potato salad at Michael C's.


Extension Viewpoints

Take steps now to defend against fire

By Bill Nobles

PREVIEW Columnist

July 7 - Shady Pine Club meeting, 7 p.m.

July 8 - Colorado Kids Club meeting, 2 p.m.

July 11 - Dog Obedience Project meeting, 4 p.m.; Sportsfishing Project meeting, 4:30 p.m.; Beef Project meeting, 6:30 p.m.

July 12 - Swine Project meeting, 6 p.m.; Rocky Mountain Riders Club meeting, 6 p.m.; Junior Stock Club meeting (Chromo), 6:30 p.m.; Lamb Project meeting, 7 p.m.

July 13 - Entomology Project meeting, 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.; Pagosa Peaks Club meeting, 6:30 p.m.

Check out our Web page at www.archuleta.colostate.edu for calendar events and information.

Wildfire-defensible zones

Fire is capricious. It can find the weak link in your home's fire protection scheme and gain the upper hand because of a small, overlooked or seemingly inconsequential factor. While you may not be able to accomplish all measures below (and there are no guarantees), each will increase your home's, and possibly your family's, safety and survival during a wildfire. Start with the easiest and least expensive actions. Begin your work closest to your house and move outward. Keep working on the more difficult items until you have completed your entire project.

Defensible space

Two factors have emerged as the primary determinants of a home's ability to survive wildfire. These are the home's roofing material and the quality of the "defensible space" surrounding it. Use fire-resistive materials (Class C or better rating), not wood or shake shingles, to roof homes in or near forests and grasslands. When your roof needs significant repairs or replacement, do so with a fire-resistant roofing material. Check with the Archuleta County building department at 264-4785.

Defensible space is an area around a structure where fuels and vegetation are treated, cleared or reduced to slow the spread of wildfire towards the structure. It also reduces the chance of a structure fire moving from the building to the surrounding forest. Defensible space provides room for firefighters to do their jobs. Your house is more likely to withstand a wildfire if grasses, brush, trees and other common forest fuels are managed to reduce a fire's intensity.

The measure of fuel hazard refers to its continuity, both horizontal and vertical. Fuels with a high degree of both vertical and horizontal continuity are the most hazardous, particularly when they occur on slopes. Heavier fuels (brush and trees) are more hazardous than light fuels such as grass. Mitigation of wildfire hazards focuses on breaking up the continuity of horizontal and vertical fuels. Additional distance between fuels is required on slopes.

Creating an effective defensible space involves developing a series of management zones in which different treatment techniques are used. See Figure 1 for a general view of the relationships among these management zones. Develop defensible space around each building on your property. Include detached garages, storage buildings, barns and other structures in your plan.

The actual design and development of your defensible space depends on several factors: size and shape of buildings, materials used in their construction, the slope of the ground on which the structures are built, surrounding topography, and sizes and types of vegetation on your property. These factors all affect your design. You may want to request additional guidance from your local Colorado State Forest Service (CSFS) forester or fire department.

Special recommendations

Tree spacing guidelines do not apply to mature stands of aspen trees where the recommendations for ladder fuels have been complied with. In areas of aspen regeneration and young trees, the spacing guidelines should be followed.

Brush and shrubs

Brush and shrubs are woody plants, smaller than trees, often formed by a number of vertical or semi-upright branches arising close to the ground. Brush is smaller than shrubs and can be either woody or herbaceous vegetation. On nearly level ground, minimum spacing recommendations between clumps of brush and/or shrubs is 2 1/2 times the height of the vegetation. Maximum diameter of clumps should be 2 times the height of the vegetation. As with tree crown spacing, all measurements are made from the edges of vegetation crowns. For example: For shrubs 6 feet high, spacing between shrub clumps should be 15 feet or more apart (measured from the edges of the crowns of vegetation clumps). The diameter of shrub clumps should not exceed 12 feet (measured from the edges of the crowns). Branches should be pruned to a height of 3 feet.


Keep dead, dry or curing grasses mowed to less than 6 inches. Defensible space size where grass is the predominant fuel can be reduced when applying this practice.


In Colorado, certain locations and tree species, including lodgepole pine and Engelmann spruce, are especially susceptible to damage and uprooting by high winds. If you see evidence of this problem in or near your forest, or have these tree species, consider the following adjustments to the defensible space guidelines. It is highly recommended that you contact a professional forester to help design your defensible space.

Adjustments: if your trees or homesite are susceptible to windthrow and the trees have never been thinned, use a stem spacing of diameter plus five. Over time (every 3 to 5 years) gradually remove additional trees. The time between cutting cycles allows trees to "firm up" by expanding their root systems. Continue this periodic thinning until the desired spacing is reached. Also consider leaving small clumps of trees and creating small openings on their lee side (opposite of the predominant wind direction). Again, a professional forester can help you design the best situation for your specific homesite and tree species. Remember, with species such as lodgepole pine and Engelmann spruce, the likelihood of a wildfire running through the tree tops or crowns (crowning) is closely related to the overabundance of fuels on the forest floor. Be sure to remove downed logs, branches and excess brush and needle buildup.

Maintain defensible space

Your home is located in a forest that is dynamic, always changing. Trees and shrubs continue to grow, plants die or are damaged, new plants begin to grow, and plants drop their leaves and needles. Like other parts of your home, defensible space requires maintenance. Use the following checklist each year to determine if additional work or maintenance is necessary.

FireWise annual checklist

- Trees/shrubs are properly thinned and pruned within the defensible space.

- Roof and gutters are clear of debris.

- Branches overhanging the roof and chimney are removed.

- Chimney screens are in place and in good condition.

- Grass and weeds are mowed to a low height.

- Outdoor water supply complete with a hose and nozzle that can reach all parts of the house.

- Fire extinguishers are checked and in working condition.

- Clearance of trees and branches from driveway is adequate for emergency equipment.

- Road signs, your name and house number are posted and easily visible.

- Easily accessible tool storage area with rakes, hoes, axes and shovels for use in case of fire.

- You have practiced family fire drills and your fire evacuation plan.

- Escape routes, meeting points and other details are known and understood by all family members.

- Attic, roof, eaves and foundation vents are screened and in good condition.

- Stilt foundations and decks are enclosed, screened or walled up.

- Trash and debris accumulations are removed from the defensible space.

- A checklist for fire safety needs inside the home also has been completed.

Check with the Colorado State Forest Service or the Extension Office for more information related to being firewise with your property.

Xeriscaping guide

Fort Lewis College Office of Community Services, in partnership with the Bureau of Reclamation and Colorado Department of Local Affairs has teamed up to publish a free 12-page color guide to xeriscaping in southwest Colorado. Xeriscaping is a holistic approach to landscaping for the purpose of achieving water conservation and enhancing the relationship between humans and their built environment. This guide can be picked up at the Extension Office and various businesses around town.


Pagosa Lakes News

A special lake use regulation proposal

By Larry Lynch

SUN Columnist

The Lakes, Fisheries and Parks Committee, a longtime standing committee of the Pagosa Lakes Property Owners Association, was approached last winter by several individuals who asked that a special catch-and-release regulation be considered for one of the four lakes.

This, in essence, is a proposal that a "trophy lake" be established in Pagosa Lakes where certain proposed regulations would require the release of all trout and bass or establish a "slot limit" where trout and bass of a certain length range must be returned to the water.

What this would do is create a situation where large fish could be caught consistently. The kind of fish that you can brag about, take a picture of and return to the water. The proposal would not affect the other lakes, leaving the regulations as they are and allowing fish to be harvested at past rates.

This, of course, is not a new idea; many sections of both private and public waters around the state have special regulations designed to protect a fishery and create "quality water fishing." Non-consumptive sport fishing is becoming more and more popular every year, especially after the recent effects of whirling disease and as more and more people are moving into rural areas of Colorado and fishing pressure increases. The fish that used to be able to sustain populations are rapidly becoming more and more depleted. Additionally, the price of stocking fish has risen over 25 percent in the past three years and most lakes and streams are not able to be stocked at past rates. This is certainly the case for us here in Pagosa Lakes.

The idea of establishing one of the lakes as a "trophy lake" with special regulations is enticing to several of the committee members. The question the board of directors and the committee has to answer is: what do the property owners in Pagosa Lakes think about the idea? This is a big decision and property owner input will be the key factor in making that decision. These lakes belong to all the property owners and are dedicated to their use and enjoyment. We would like to know what you think about the proposal. We are planning on holding a public meeting Wednesday, July 13, at 7 p.m. to hear property owner input and ideas on the matter. The meeting will be held in the Pagosa Lakes Clubhouse at 230 Port Ave. in Vista.

There have been several issues brought up concerning the proposal. One issue is that in order to establish a catch-and-release fishery you are almost forced to switch the lake over to artificial flies and lures only, eliminating bait fishing. Once fish have swallowed the bait (night crawlers or power bait) it is difficult to release the fish alive. Would this be a concern or a problem that could kill the idea?

Another concern is the effect it would have on the kids. Requiring the kids to return fish may be a problem. We certainly want to encourage the young anglers out there - they are the future of the sport. One thought regarding this was that it would be possible, for example, to let kids 12 and under keep their limit and continue to use bait.

Yet another concern would be enforcement. Would it be difficult to enforce these regulations? Many of the committee members feel it would be possible to enforce the regulations through public education and increased patrols. We also know that anglers tend to watch each other and monitor the resource.

A question that has come up is which lake would make the most sense for this proposal? A number of the committee members and local angler lobbyists feel that Hatcher Lake would make the most sense. It is the most biologically productive lake we have. It is scheduled for a fishery survey this summer which would give us some important scientific data on just exactly what we have in the lake, what the food chain situation is, what the growth rates are and if a catch-and-release type regulation makes scientific sense. It also does not receive quite the pressure as, say, Lake Pagosa or Village Lake. However, the committee is open to the idea of proposing one of the other lakes if that is what property owner input dictates.

Again, I want to emphasize this is just an idea and property owner input will be the driving factor in any decision made. If you fish in these lakes and wish to be heard, please attend the public meeting July 13.



Dylan Blake Laner

Dylan and Kelly Laner would like to announce the birth of their son, Dylan Blake Laner.  Blake was born May 23, 2005, at 3:26 a.m., weighed 5 pounds, 15 ounces and was 19 3/4 inches long.  He was welcomed home by his very proud big sister, BaiLee.  His grandparents are Matt and Lynne Bridges of Pagosa Springs,  Dave Wilson of Grants, N.M., Arlie and Brian Swett of Healy, Ark., and John and Cindy Laner of Bayfield. 




Abran Ernesto Martinez

"Loved by Everyone"

Abran Ernesto Martinez, age 51, passed away July 4, 2005, in Salt Lake City, Utah. He was born May 1, 1954, in Chama, N.M. to Rafael Carlos and Rose Romero Martinez. He married Caroline Maria Maestas, Jan. 7, 1974, in Lumberton, N.M.

Abran enjoyed fishing and the outdoors. He was a jack of all trades.

He is survived by his wife; two sons and a daughter - Ernest (Ann), Abe

Chris, Karen (Adam) Barnes; grandchildren, Brandi, Oscar, Daidee, Xavier and Vincent; his mother, Rose, and stepfather Francisco Maynez; brothers and sisters Donald (Eileen), Charlie (Josie) William (Margie), Darlene (Rosendo) Rocha Louis (Norma), Fidel (Carla), Diane (Abe) Luna, Lawrence (Janet), Mary (Eddie) Turner, Steve, Lisa Martinez, and many nieces and nephews.

Mass of Christian Burial was held July 6 at the St. Martin De Porres. A Rosary was held July 5 at the Jenkins-Soffe Mortuary.


Olive Mallezie

Olive E. Mallezie, 79, passed away Monday, July 4, 2005, at Pine Ridge Extended Care facility after a year-long battle with cancer. She was preceded in death by her parents, Emile Gagne and Vine Gagne, of Berlin, N.H.; her husband of 47 years, Robert L. Mallezie; and an infant son, Lawrence Mallezie. She is survived by a daughter and son-in-law, Barbara and Angelo Saladino, a granddaughter and great-granddaughter, Melissa Tschetter and Emily Tschetter respectively, of Billings, Mont., and a grandson, Michael Saladino, of Lebanon, Oregon.

Olive was born in Berlin, N.H. on Aug.18, 1925. She was an only child, doted on by her parents and various aunts and uncles. She graduated from Berlin High School in 1944, and remained in Berlin until her marriage to Robert Mallezie in 1946. Olive was a devoted wife and mother and, like many women of her era, her home was her castle. She took great pride in being a housewife and supporting her husband in his career, which took them from New Hampshire to New Jersey to Illinois to Southern California, and finally to Prescott, Ariz. in his retirement. Olive remained in Prescott after her husband's death in 1993 until 2000, when she moved to Pagosa Springs to take up residence in a mother-in-law suite in her daughter and son-in-law's home.

From being a sheltered wife who knew nothing of finances and who could not drive a car, Olive obtained her driver's license for the first time at age 75 and achieved a degree of independence in thought and action which pleased everyone who knew her. She loved animals, especially cats, and brought six of them with her to Pagosa Springs. Her family will miss her, especially her daughter, who enjoyed her company these last five years and came to know her as a complete person, not just as Mom.

Olive's family wishes to extend their gratitude to all who supported Olive during her struggle with cancer, especially the staff at Pine Ridge, who were unfailingly kind during a difficult time. Olive's wish was to be cremated, her cremains to be mingled with those of her husband. Pagosa Funeral Options is handling her cremation; donations to the American Cancer Society in lieu of flowers would be most appreciated.


 Business News

Chamber News

Fourth behind us, more events just ahead

By Mary Jo Coulehan

SUN Columnist

Oh boy, what a Fourth of July holiday!

Not only were there great parties with family and friends, but all the events were fun, well attended and there were a lot of them. I hope everyone had a safe holiday. Now you might think that the busyness is over, but I'm here to tell you it's only just begun.

And with that thought in mind, let's roll right into all the upcoming events.

Plan ahead now

Here are some well-in-advance notices.

If everyone can just hold off washing their cars until Saturday, July 23, the Chamber will be host our annual membership car wash. Yes, we will wash your car or truck for free, at the Chamber parking lot. Just keep this date in mind. This will be my first car wash, and I'm ready to take on the dirty vehicles in Pagosa.

You may also want to block out some time for Sunday, July 24, when the Pagosa Springs Arts Council hosts its annual home and garden tour. You can purchase tickets for the event here at the Chamber, at Moonlight Books, at WolfTracks or at the Arts Council building in Town Park. The tour is always a great showcase of some of the fantastic homes and gardens in our community. With the weather the way it has been, you can be assured of some beautiful gardens this year. Tickets are $8 for PSAC members and $10 for nonmembers. Get yours now, there's no buying at the door.

It is also time for you to either get yourself, or to get a team ready for the Pagosa Lakes High-Tri. This triathlon will include biking, running and swimming. The date of the triathlon is Saturday, Aug. 6. So put the final touches on your training, read Ming Steen's column and get ready to tri.

Just because the Red Ryder Roundup is over, it doesn't mean rodeo in Pagosa is over for the season. There are fast action rodeo thrills every Thursday night at the rodeo grounds. Adult tickets are $10 and children under 12 are $4. You can save a few dollars if you buy your tickets in advance at either Goodman's Department Store, the Hide Out or the Made in Colorado Shoppe. You can also go out early to the fairgrounds and enjoy a horseback ride for only $5.


You still have three days to see the Music Boosters' production of "Oklahoma!"

This Rogers and Hammerstein musical is a traditional favorite and the cast and crew, as usual, have been hard at work. Initial reports are that the musical is great. You can purchase your tickets for this affair either at the Plaid Pony or at the door. Adult tickets are $12 and children are $6 and performances are in the high school auditorium.

Wood Crafters

If you are interested in woodworking or just like fine workmanship, the 14th annual Woodcarvers Rendezvous is July 9-15 in Creede. Watch carvers, take a class or buy some wares at this event. It goes on all week so, if you need to get out of town, keep Creede in mind.

Chimney Rock

Chimney Rock will host "Life at Chimney Rock: A Festival of Crafts and Culture," Saturday, July 9, and Sunday, July 10.

The festival features interactive demonstrations of crafts and skills of the Ancestral Puebloan culture and regional Native American cultures. Demonstrations will include basket making, flint knapping, flute making and playing, grinding grain, pottery making and more. No reservations are required. Admission is the usual park entrance price of $8 for adults, $2 for children 5 -11, free for children under 5. This stunning landmark is right in our backyard. Take advantage of one of our natural wonders and learn more about the people who came before us. If you haven't been up to Chimney Rock in a while, why not make it this weekend?

Welcome members

For all you new members - just a reminder that the Chamber will host its new member orientation Wednesday, July 13, here at the Visitor Center.

When you sign up, we appreciate your support, but we also want to give you a better idea of what the Chamber can do for you and of the amenities available to you as an individual or business.

The gathering will start at 5:30 p.m. and will last a little over an hour. Beverages and snacks will be served. If you have any questions about the orientation, give us a call at 264-2360.

Welcome to four new members this week.

We start off with Harold Kelley and Highland West Investments. Highland West Investments provides you with real estate expertise with a personal touch. Harold is located at 301 N. Pagosa Blvd, Suite B-10 and may be contacted at 731-1830. Harold has been in the area for quite some time, so put his real estate knowhow to good use.

I just like this name: Jessie's Elves & Gifts. Mike Lepore and his family have opened up a gift store right by Farrago's at 175 Pagosa St. Their gift shop has items for the garden-like wind chimes and birdhouses, but also items for the home, like specialty pillows, bath items, candles, clocks, baskets, picture frames and many more items. When you're dashing down Pagosa Street and need a gift, add this store to your repertoire of great gift stores in town. If you need to see if they carry a particular item, give them a call at 264-0868.

Just in time for the busy visitor season, we have Coyote Hill Lodge joining us. Coyote Hill Lodge is on 235 acres of privacy and spectacular views. There are three beautifully-furnished vacation units with a common area also available for entertaining, cooking and dining. They welcome large groups. For reservations, call 731-3387. We also thank Lois Higgins with the Made in Colorado Shoppe for referring Gina Willis and Coyote Hill Lodge to the Chamber.

We now have a unique new member - Pagosa Waldorf Initiative, run by Maryanne Calvanese. The Pagosa Waldorf Initiative sponsors the Treasure Mountain Early Life Center where every child's essence is tenderly nurtured through creative arts, nature, imaginative play and cooperation. And what better place to experience all this stimuli than in beautiful Pagosa Springs? The community center is the gathering place for the life center. For more information on this child life center, give Maryanne a call at 731-3070.

Renewing with us this week is Buffalo Trading Post and Nursery. And welcome back to Whisper Creek Log Home Systems and Realty.

That will do it for me this week. Thank you again to all the businesses that provided services to locals and visitors alike during this past busy holiday weekend. I hope you will be able to take some time and enjoy the summer as well.


Biz Beat

Dogwood Cafe

Shane Bridges, left, is the manager of the Dogwood Cafe. Brooke Jordan, center, and Brooks Kitchens are the co-owners. With family recipes and homestyle cooking, the three Georgia natives bring a new and unique dining experience to Pagosa Country.

Opened May 25, the Dogwood Cafe features authentic southern food in a casual, lively atmosphere. Whether it's fresh catfish or fried okra, you can calm your craving for a home-cooked meal at the Dogwood Cafe. With meals ranging from hand-cut steaks to vegetarian plates, the broad and affordable menu has something for every diet and palate. An extensive wine list and Abita beer from Louisiana add to the truly southern ambiance.

The Dogwood Cafe is open for lunch from 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. and for dinner from 5- 9 p.m., 5 - 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. The restaurant closes Monday nights and Tuesdays.

The Dogwood Cafe is located at 10 Solomon Drive off of Piedra Road, next to the Corner Store and the Super 8 Hotel. Call 731-2324 for more information or take-out orders.

Cards of Thanks

The fourth annual Chair Event, a silent auction of chairs and small tables, was once again a success. This is a fund-raiser for the American Cancer Society and connected to the Relay for Life. Artists who embellished the items were Pat Black, The Cloverbuds 4-H Club, The Colorado Kids 4 H Club, Randall Davis, Suzan Joy, Heidi Keshet's six grade computer class, Syl Loboto, Joanne Long, Brenda McCooey, Jody Million, Donna Milner, Pierre Mion, Judy Schofield, Danny Smith and Donna Wagle. Items were donated by several private parties and businesses. Area banks were kind enough to share lobby space for displaying these unique works of art. Many patrons enjoyed placing their bids on the items while they were being displayed and some were pleasantly surprised to find out that, yes, they had been the highest bidder. To all of you, I say thank you.

Paula Bain,




We would like to thank Pastor Aaron Hatfield, Joy Norris and the congregation of the Seventh Day Adventist church for their help with the funeral service for Floyd Bramwell and the wonderful meal prior to the services.

We also would like to thank Irma Brown and friend for singing Floyd's favorite hymn, "One Day at A Time," and Phil Janowski for the old cowboy songs.

We appreciate all the friends and family who have expressed their sympathies through their presence, cards, flowers, food, etc. Unfortunately we will be unable to privately express our thanks for some of the flowers and food as the names are unknown. Thank you to the active bearers: Dustin Bramwell, Dayton Kirkham, KaCey Rhodes, Charles Davis, Leo Pacheco and Jim Bramwell.

We have established a memorial for Floyd to benefit the Western Heritage Event Center. Donations can be made to the Western Heritage Event Center in memory of Floyd Bramwell, P.O. Box 1216, Pagosa Springs, CO 81147.

At 89, Virginia still appreciates the calls and visits at Pine Ridge Extended Care.

With sincere thanks,

the family of Floyd Bramwell



What an awesome celebration we had for Alden. He would have had a wonderful time. All who attended missed that big smile he always had. To simply "thank you" does not seem enough, but it is truly from the heart. Thanks to Denny Barber and all Alden's friends who dished up that great barbecue. Thanks to Mark Devoti and all the "Boys in the Band" for that toe-tapping music. Thanks to Angela's Flower Shoppe and all who came by to say hello to our family and give us a hug. A special thank you I give to Gene and Susan Crabtree who gave so much of themselves, even so far as going to the airport and delivering some of our children to me. Thanks for all the cards, flowers and calls with words of comfort and encouragement. What a community!

Jo Ann Ecker and Family


Good neighbor

Dave and I would like to thank the man who stopped and gave us a ride to City Market when our car broke down on U.S. 160 at mile marker 135 on Monday, July 4.

It was a hot morning and would have been a long walk — so just to let you know we really appreciated it.

Also, thanks to Jason at JR Towing for getting to us in a timely manner. He is very professional and really knows his job.

Many thanks,

Dave and Lili Pearson



"Serengeti Trekkers" of Community United Methodist Church take this opportunity to thank the following for helping to make our Vacation Bible School grrreat and a roaring success!

Rito Blanco Nursery and Mary Kay Carpenter for the loan of potted grass plants; Pagosa Springs SUN and Sarah Smith for the wonderful photo page and for printing our article; Ponderosa Do-It-Best Hardware for the loan of a barrel trough and stand; First Baptist Church and Donna Sanders for donating props and supplies left over from their own Serengeti Trek; Robbye Reedy for her set-up help and loan of mosquito netting hats; The United Methodist Thrift Shop for loaning stuffed animals, figurines and fabrics; St. Patrick's Episcopal Church for volunteers and financial support; Jerry and Lil Smith for loaning an elephant-load of paraphernalia from the real Serengeti in Africa; and countless members of Community United Methodist Church for loaning or donating items and/or contributing their valuable time.

Thanks to you, this Vacation Bible School helped children from 11 different denominations, and some unchurched, learned how to love God, talk to God, talk about God and work for God. They will remember this for a long time.

With appreciation,

Serengeti Trek Staffers

Community United Methodist Church


River fest

A big thanks to all the sponsors that made the 2005 Celebración del Rio San Juan a big success! Everything from the onsite contributions such as the solar-powered band (Arrowhead Solar) and the donated burgers (JJ's), the discounted river trips (Canyon Rio), and the prize and cash donations from local and national businesses contributed to the festive event. We couldn't have done it without you.

ACE Lumber & Hardware, Arrowhead Solar, Artemesia Botanicals, Bear Creek Saloon & Grill, Big Water Gear, The Buffalo Inn, Canyon Rio, DR Builders, Design-a-Sign, Dogwood Café, Farrago's Market Café, The Flying Burrito, Garcia Construction, The Irish Rose, JJ's Upstream Restaurant, Juan's Mountain Sports, Jack's Plastics, KWUF FM, Laura Bedard, Let It Fly, Moonlight Books, Pagosa SUN, Pagosa Outside, Pinewood Inn, Professional Plastering, San Juan Motel, San Juan Veterinary Hospital, SKA Brewery, The Source for Real Estate, The Springs Resort, Summit Ski & Sports, Switchback Mountain Gear and Apparel, Tannin' on the Corner, Touch of the Tropics, The Unfortunate Sausage, Wolf Creek Backcountry, Wolf Creek Ski Corporation, WolfTracks Bookstore & Coffee shop.

Celebracion organizers


Rotary thanks

Once again the Rotary Independence Day parade was a big success thanks to a lot of wonderful and dedicated people in Pagosa Springs including the Pagosa Springs Police, Colorado Mounted Rangers, Archuleta County Sheriff's Department, Colorado State Patrol, American Legion, San Juan Hospital District, Fire Protection District, Chamber of Commerce, County Extension Center, Pagosa SUN, KWUF, Rotary Club volunteers, announcers Karl Isberg and Mike Branch, Day Lumber, all of the residents along 8th Street where the parade forms, the parade Marshal Ross Aragon and, of course, all of the entries that made up the parade.

Together, we celebrated a very significant day for our country.

Rod Preston, Chairman, Rotary Parade Committee

Ming Steen, Rotary President



In a recent paper, an article on the demolition derby indicated the start time was 5:30 p.m. In fact, the derby arena gates open at 5:30 — the derby is scheduled to start at 7 p.m.

Thanks to the efforts of the 2005 Demolition Derby Committee, who have been working since February to obtain sponsors, the 2005 derby has a record number of sponsors and has increased prize money to at least $2,700.

The Demolition Derby Committee would like to recognize those generous merchants in Pagosa and Durango for their support of the derby. The 2005 Demolition Derby sponsors are, to date: Buckskin Towing/Pagosa Auto Care (Corporate Bronze $500); New Country Auto Center of Durango (trophies); Colorado Collision Center (winner jacket, large division); A&M Construction (winner jacket, compact division); A.C. .Houston Lumber of Durango (Last Man Standing jacket); Ponderosa Do It Best (winner hats); Brennan Oil of Durango (Beauty Car prize $100); Landstar Inway (derby t-shirts for staff, judges, volunteers and security); Frontier Towing and Pagosa Radiator Service (spectator giveaway car); and Piedra Automotive (derby tow truck and banner). Additional sponsors for fence banners and cash donations are: AAA Propane, Inc., Circle T/ACE Hardware & Lumber, Allen's Auto Body, William Anderson, Basin Co-Op of Durango, Mike Brodner Design, Colorado Dream Homes, Comfort One Insulation, Dial Oil, Holladay Auto & Truck, JTL Appraisals, Kroeger Ace Hardware of Durango, KWUF Radio, Main Street Rentals, Moore Chiropractic & Wellness Centre, Navajo Trail Rental Center, North Pagosa Shell, The Real Choice, Selph's Propane, SmithCo Enterprises, Southwest AG of Bayfield, Superliner of Pagosa Springs, Tile & Light Company of Durango, Timberline Builders of Durango, United Country Premier Brokers, Walter Body Shop, and Western View Windows of Bayfield.

Additionally, the Demolition Derby Committee would like to thank the many local businesses who donated gift certificates for intermission door prize drawings.

Thank you for helping us recognize these winners.

Marti Gallo

Archuleta County Fair Board



Lt. Joel Lomasney

Lt. Joel Lomasney, USMC, son of Mr. and Mrs. Henry Lomasney, graduated with top honors from T.B.S. in Quantico, Virginia.

Joel is presently in flight training, resuming his career in the United States Marine Corps.

Pictured above, from left to right, Sgt. Patrick Lomasney, Henry Lomasney, Lt. Joel Lomasney, Jane Lomasney and Lance Corporal Samuel Lomasney. All eight members of the Lomasney family attended the ceremony June 9, 2005.


Sports Page

PSSVC sets summer volleyball camps

It's time to dust off the gym shoes and dig out the old knee pads.

Pagosa Springs Summer Volleyball Club will host a junior high school volleyball camp for girls and boys, fifth to eighth grades, Aug. 1, 2 and 3.

Sessions will run from 9-11:30 a.m. in the junior high gym.

Pagosa Springs High School varsity volleyball coach Andy Rice will direct the camp along with high school assistant coach Kristen Hentchell and Pagosa Springs Junior High School coach Mikaela Russler.

Registration will be on site, starting 8:30 a.m. Aug. 1. Parents are asked to come to the gym that morning to fill out the registration form. Cost is $30, payable to Pagosa Springs Summer Volleyball Club.

The junior high camp will focus on an introduction to the rules of the game and basic volleyball fundamentals, with the camp culminating with full six-on-six play for those campers deemed ready.

The club's camp for girls in ninth through 12th grades began July 6 at the high school gym, with two-a-day sessions set for July 7 and 8.

For more information, contact Rice at 264-1951 or Hentchell at 731-2595.


Pine Cone Classic tournament set for next week

By Lynne Allison

Special to the SUN

The Pagosa Women's Golf Association featured a pick-your-partner, low gross, low net format for its league day, June 21.

The ladies played Pinon Ponderosa courses with a par 71 rating, and were awarded their full handicaps for the round. Lynne Allison and Audrey Johnson, Jane Day and Marilyn Smart tied for first gross; each team scored an 82. There was also a tie for first place in the net category between Jay Wilson and Maxine Pechin; Carole Howard and Jody Lawrence. Each team scored a 59.

The following week's league day featured a scramble format. All teams were determined according to each player's handicap, and the ladies played the Meadows Pinon courses with a par 72 rating. Each player had to have at least one drive per nine holes. Lynne Allison, Audrey Johnson, and Katy Threet captured first place with a 71. Second went to Carol Barrows, Loretta Campuzano, Jane Day and Sharon Taub with a 74. Third place went to Josie Hummel, Barb Lange, Maxine Pechin and Carrie Weisz with a 75. Immediately following play, the ladies enjoyed lunch and a general association meeting at the club's Greenskeeper Restaurant.

June 24 was an auspicious day for league member Cherry O'Donnell. While playing a round with her husband and son Friday evening, she had a hole-in-one on the No. 2 hole of the Ponderosa course. She accomplished the feat with a pitching wedge on the 75 yard par 3 hole. This particular evening, the pin was tucked right behind a large sand bunker, which guards the front of the green. When Cherry teed off, the ball hit the fringe behind the bunker and bounced toward the hole. Cherry couldn't see the ball after it landed on the green, and her husband, Mike said, "I think it went in the hole." They weren't certain until they reached the green - they checked the hole, and there was her ball. Cherry was thrilled and excited about this very special event, as this was her first hole-in-one.

Just a reminder that the annual Pine Cone Classic tournament hosted by the Pagosa Springs Golf Club and the Pagosa Women's Golf Association is scheduled for July 11-13.

This tournament is for teams of two women who play a best ball net and gross format. Direct all inquiries to Marilyn Pruter at tornadolynn@juno.com, or call 731-2119.


High Peaks finishes strong at Reno tourney

Pagosa's High Peaks Volleyball Club completed play last week at the Volleyball Festival held in Reno, Nev.

Beginning the tournament ranked 104 out of 125 teams, the High Peaks club finished the tournament with a final ranking of 67 - an impressive finish for the first-year organization.

"To hold and raise your ranking each day of the tournament is a testament to the hard work these athletes put into this week's competition," said High Peaks coach Myles Gabel. "All ten players contributed to the outstanding performance during this Volleyball Festival. They were sophomore Laci Jones, juniors Erin Gabel, Danielle Spencer, Mariah Howell and Iris Frye, seniors Liza Kelley, Emily Buikema, Meggie Jehnzen, Burgandy Rhines and CSU Pueblo-bound Caitlyn Jewell. I truly believe these players gained valuable experience playing against top level teams in this tournament. It will serve them well during their run for the state championships as members of the Pirates' high school team this coming season. Also, we have already had college coaches contacting our players about possibilities of future scholarship opportunities."

Men's Golf League results for June 29

By Bill Curtiss

Special to The SUN

The Pagosa Springs Men's Golf League played a Skins and Greenies format June 29.

The field was lead by Bob Chitwood with three Greenies and one skin, including a double Greenie Birdie on No. 8 Ponderosa.

Bob Jones won three skins and Ray Kilgore had two skins. Other winners with one skin each were Warren Grams, Fred Campuzano, Gene Johnson and Ed Day.

John Hudson won the Greenie for closest to the pin on No. 6 Meadows, and Truett Forrest was the Greenie winner on No. 2 Ponderosa.


2005 Red Ryder Roundup Rodeo Results

All Around Cowgirl

Brianna Bainter

 All Around Cowboy

J.J. Autry

 Bareback Riding

1. Richard Slaughter, 78, $509.12

2. Taos Muncy, 71, $381.84

3. Joaquin Tucson, 70, $254.56

4. Tyler Scales, 66, $127.28

 Steer Wrestling

1. Tyrone Tsosie, 5.6, $511.46

2. Dan Ramey, 7.0, $383.59

3. John Denson, 7.5, $267.35

 Calf Roping

1. J.J. Autry, 11.21, $564

2. Kee Etsity, 11.86, $432

3. Todd Saulsberry, 12.31, $282

4. Willard Moody, 12.81, $141

 Incentive Calf Roping

1. J.J. Autry, 11.21, $255.38

2. Clay Ivey, 14.05, $191.53

3. Vance Myers, 14.45, $133.49

 Breakaway Roping

1. Tammy Branon, 2.98, $625.24

2. Jessica Aragon, 3.0, $517.44

3. Brianna Bainter, 3.39, $409.64

4. Ariel Roberts, 3.58, $301.84

5. Katie Reibold, 4.70, $194.04

6. Lisa Webb, 4.87, $107.80

 Saddle Bronc Riding

1. Tay Cline, 76, $497.76

2/3/4. Will Cline/Ramos Benny/Taos Muncy, 72, $331.84

5. Robert Aragon, 71, $165.92

 Open Barrel Race

1. Toni Sands, 17.652, $624.19

2. Caren Lamb, 17.739, $495.68

3. Kelly Wren, 17.870, $367.17

4. Brianna Bainter, 17.897, $238.66

5. Leigh Ann Billingsley, 17.942, $110.14

 Incentive Barrell Race

1. Kelly Wiseman, 18.375, $356.22

2. Ariel Roberts, 18.416, $267.17

3. Erin Homm, 18.448, $178.11

4. Bethany Whitley, 18.489, $489.06

 Jr. Barrel Race

1. Jana Baker, 18.128, $297

2. Raesha Ray, 18.149, $222.75

3. Peton Shahan, 18.229, $155.25

 Open Team Roping

1. Brock Hanson/Chance Whetworth, 4.15, $776.73

2. Cole Cooper/Chance Whetworth, 4.89, $634.54

3. Shawn Willis/Adrian Salas, 5.98, $502.34

4. Wade Kreutzer/Greg Martinez, 6.02, $370.15

5. Enrique Salas/Shawn Willis, 6.17, $237.95

6. Lorenzo Sauceda/J.R. DeDios, 6.21, $132.19

 Incentive Team Roping

1. Terry Butts/Mike Wolf, 6.70, $886.93

2. Bruce Denton/Robert Valdez, 7.02, $591.29

3. J.J. Autry/Jaxon Autry, 7.96, $468.11

4. Jim Bramwell/Alfredo Sanchez, 8.30, $344.92

5. Kelsi Willis/Mark Aragon, 8.43, $172.45

 Scramble Egg Team Roping

1. Gina Cooper/Michael Snooks, 8.61, $809.14

2. Leona Segura/Wade Orr, 9.14, $539.43

3. Megan Wolf/Zane Bramwell, 9.73, $427.05

4. Bill Townsend/Chip Roberts, 12.34, $314.67

5. Trudy Kramer/Michael Snooks, 14.25, $157.33

 Bull Riding

1. Ethan Belone, 84, $696.42

2. Chance Towner, 78, $572.06

3. Travis Brisco, 74, $447.70

4. Ryan McConnell, 73, $323.34

5. Cody Cook, 71, $248.72

6. Chance Tate, 70, $124.36

7. Daniel Nunn, 67, $74.62

 Bull Riding Day Money

Sat. 7/2/05, Chance Tate/Ryan McConnell, $45

Sun. 7/3/05, Travis Briscoe/Daniel Nunn/Cody Cook/Chance Towner/Tracy Watson, $26

Mon. 7/4/05, Ethan Belone, $120


Pagosa Springs Recreation

Certain qualities make for good coaches

By Myles Gabel

SUN Columnist

As we begin our fall soccer leagues we are looking for parents who want to get involved with coaching.

The Pagosa Springs Recreation Department will be there to help you design practices, give you all of the rules, help with the makeup of the team, hire officials and make the fields safe for your children. Are you ready to begin your odyssey into youth coaching?

AYSO gives the following brief glimpse into the tools necessary to begin working with our youth soccer players. Good coaches possess the qualities listed below, which are essential and necessary for being a positive influence on our children.

Patience - This is probably the most important characteristic. Let's face it: 12 active children together require a lot of attention. A good coach is one who doesn't always expect angels on the field.

Tolerance - This quality goes hand-in-hand with patience. Kids are going to be rowdy or moody or lazy. Tolerance takes the different mind-sets and turns the focus to the tasks "afoot."

Acceptance - Our children are so very different. Each one has varied potential and skill levels. A good coach is one who recognizes each child as an individual and he/she encourages that child to perform at his/her very best level. Perfection is not required.

Motivation - Soccer can be viewed as kids kicking a ball across the field, or it can be viewed as an opportunity for growth. The true test lies in sparking a child's interest to learn and grow and keeping that spark alive each season.

Respect - Unfortunately, there are instances in which coaches, and sometimes parents, of other teams berate and belittle their children for making "mistakes." Sometimes they even go as far as criticizing opposing team members. A good coach should never single out a child for making a mistake and should not allow parents or the other team members to do so either. At the beginning of every season a good coach reminds parents that we're all in this sport to learn and have a good time.

Sportsmanship - Perhaps this should have been on top of the list, but being toward the end does not lessen the importance. The definition of sportsmanship is to teach kids to work together as a team in order to achieve a common goal. It also means teaching kids to respect other players as well as each other. Insults are not tolerated. Mistakes are team mistakes, and they are used as teaching tools for the next game.

Ability to teach - Sounds simple, right? It's not. How many times has a parent signed up a child for a sport, only to have a well-intentioned father decide to coach? He may or may not know the sport. He may or may not relate well to his players. There is a huge difference between the team whose members do what is yelled at them, and the team whose members actually understand what to do and why. A good coach teaches his players basic fundamentals, explains concepts and enables his/her players to think logically when making a play. A child should know, "When the ball comes to you, what do you do?" Kids should be able to use logic and make the best choices based on situations. One of the reasons we encourage our kids to play sports is to hopefully broaden their horizons and to give them additional skills they wouldn't get otherwise.

Playing sports should be a positive experience, and it should be one that children look forward to each and every season. It can start with a good coach!

Youth soccer

Youth soccer signups will begin July 5 and continue through July 29. The youth soccer season will start earlier than in past years beginning Aug. 15 and running through the end of September due to cold October weather and less sunlight. Pick up youth soccer applications at the Town Hall after July 5 or go online at townofpagosasprings.com to download an application. Age groups are 5/6, 7/8, 9/10, 11/12 and we will attempt to form a new group of 13/14s (seventh and eighth graders) if interested. Call the recreation department with any questions: 264-4151 Ext. 232.

Adult soccer

Adult soccer is back. Anyone interested in playing coed adult soccer, please go the soccer field adjacent to the Pagosa Springs High School football stadium every Tuesday at 6 p.m. If you need additional information call the Town of Pagosa Springs Recreation Department and have your name placed on our team lists.

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.

For any questions, concerns or 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.


Pagosa Springs Parks

Many compliments for Fourth of July activities

By Joe Lister Jr.

SUN Columnist

Where do I start?

So far, I have heard nothing but compliments concerning the activities put on by the Town of Pagosa Springs during the Fourth of July holiday.

It takes a whole town to throw the type of party that Pagosa Springs throws.

Every year, we think of new ways to become more efficient so the residents and guests in Pagosa Country enjoy all aspects of our big get-together.

This year, I have a list of special thank you's I need to extend. First, to all the Kiwanis members who helped organize the town picnic, the parking concession, and clean-up. Getting a group this size to help worked wonders and left us with a couple less big projects to organize. Then there were the folks from the First Baptist Church of Pagosa Springs; their wonderful volunteers helped keep the park clean for the Park-to-Park Arts and Crafts Fair.

Thanks also go to our town employees who led the way in preparation of parking lots, setting up barricades, loading up the firework show, and for assistance during the parade. Our street crew, headed by Chris Gallegos ,was great. Police Chief Don Volger and his staff organized traffic control for both the parade and the fireworks show. They did a great job, moving the masses out of the Sports Complex area.

Thanks go to Myles Gabel and family for running the games at the Sports Complex the night of the Fourth, and for doing everything from ordering the prizes to refereeing sack relays. Myles, you did a great job with the games. The fireworks show was tremendous and thanks go to the group put together by Dennis Ford.

A full list of volunteers will appear in next week's SUN.

As parks and recreation director I know how many hours are worked; I know the hours of volunteer labor, the planning hours, etc. I've learned to appreciate what goes into every aspect of putting on a show as big as the 2005 Fourth of July party.

There were a few people who complained about the fact the show was not held out in Pagosa Lakes as it had been several years in the past. Our problem is locating a venue that can support the parking, a location that can host 1,500-plus spectators and that would be safe for all. With the development of Aspen Village and the condos at The Pagosa Lodge, times have changed and we can no longer have a site and a parking area. With these factors in mind, we decided the Sports Complex is the best location for the show - one that can satisfy most of our needs. We have to use what is available to us, and try to put on the best show possible. And we did just that this Fourth of July.

Donations needed

We are in the first stages of planning the 2006 fireworks show, and the hurdle has been raised. We would like to raise more money, and get the private sector involved.

The Town of Pagosa Springs has been the main contributor to the fireworks show, and would like to see the display get better each year. We would like to take it to another level.

My first goal is to raise $6,000 from the private sector; if we can get pledges by Dec. 31, we can sign an early contract and receive tremendous discounts on items for the next show. This year we received a 25 percent discount by signing a contract early. This year's pledges included Fairfield Pagosa, Pagosa Area Water and Sanitation District, Kiwanis, Jack and Brenda Rottman, and Siebrand's Show/Carnival.

If you would like to volunteer to serve on a Firework 2006 fund-raising committee, call me at 264-4151, Ext. 231.


Thanks for the help


The Fourth of July in Pagosa Country there aren't many occasions that equal the experience. It is the ultimate small-town celebration and the best attended such celebration in southwest Colorado. The town is packed. Try to get a motel room, try to book a timeshare - you're out of luck. Hordes of people travel from other places in the Four Corners and from northern New Mexico to join in. For many local families, it marks a perfect occasion to assemble the troops. Pagosa Springs High School classes hold their reunions and recent graduates return to town to meet friends and families.

For longtime residents, the holiday provides a chance to see familiar faces, renew old acquaintances. Activities abound for three days. Kids and the young at heart attend the carnival on the soccer field at Town Park while shoppers browse the arts and crafts fair in Town Park and Centennial Park, the two venues connected by the Riverwalk. This year, rafts coursed down the San Juan while people played and fished on the banks of the river.

There were three editions of the Red Ryder Roundup Rodeo - the prototype of rodeo. Rodeo the way it's meant to be.

The parade made its way down San Juan and Pagosa streets July 4, the sidewalks packed with spectators.

The evening of the Fourth began with activities at the Sports Complex - games and entertainment - ending with the annual fireworks display.

When all was said and done, those in town for the festivities had experienced something special.

And they had done so because of the tremendous efforts made by a large number of our fellow residents of Pagosa Country - volunteers and paid employees alike. That's the other special thing those who enjoyed the festivities experienced: Something that is typical of this community, a willingness to serve, to help.

Think for a moment about the rodeo. It is one thing to buy your ticket, walk through the gate, sit down and enjoy the action. It is entirely another thing to serve on the committee that makes the event possible. Volunteers work year-round to make the rodeo happen.

Watch the parade and you see the results of work by numerous Rotary Club volunteers. They organize and monitor entries, take care of the liaison with officials.

When you attend the arts and crafts fair, you do so because people at the Chamber of Commerce organized the event.

The activities at the Sports Complex? Thank the tireless town crews and staff who set it up and ran it - from putting up the stage to firing off the last mortar. Those same people work throughout the weekend to keep up with the enormous amount of trash and debris left on town streets and sidewalks, with help from civic-minded volunteers. Law enforcement personnel are on duty, dealing with all manner of problems. Emergency Medical Services crews are called on again and again to respond to incidents.

The list of organizations that contribute to the experience, the people who provide the time, energy and effort to see the holiday is a success, goes on and on. Think too for a moment about the people who keep grocery shelves stocked, who run the gas stations, who man the registers at motels and businesses. They make their mark on this special holiday and, most often, without thanks.

We are incredibly fortunate to live in a community in which this level of participation and dedication is present - on the Fourth of July and at every other time of the year. It is one way in which our community can serve as an example to others. And it is one tradition we must care for, lest we outgrow what makes this place, despite all the changes, a wonderful place to be.

Karl Isberg


Pacing Pagosa

You think you know the county?

By Richard Walter

SUN Columnist

It's geography lesson time.

Think you know Archuleta County like the back of your hand? If so, see if you can locate some of the following:

Skeeter Park and Skeeter Peak; We Creek and Headache Creek; Charleys Peak and Gramps Peak; or, how about Brushfence Lake and Sexto Creek?


Understandable, but all are in Archuleta County, albeit the far eastern portion adjacent to Conejos County and far from the familiar Pagosa Springs.

Come closer, you say? OK.

How about Villareal Canyon, Agua Canyon or Seguro Canyon?

They're in the county, too. All three are almost due south of Pagosa Springs, providing drainoff from Archuleta Mesa.

Speaking of mesas, we also have Abeyta Mesa, Vigil Mesa, Mesa Pedregosa, and La Mesa del Media. A mesa is defined as a plateau or tableland, but where are these?

All lie along the Little Navajo River southeast of Chromo.

Maybe you know where Oakbrush Hill is. Actually, there are two, a scant six and a half miles apart. One lies along North Piedra Road west of Stevens Reservoir. The other is due south of the first, equidistant between Burns Canyon and Billy Goat Point.

I suspect everyone knows where East Fork is and that with West Fork it forms the San Juan River. But does anyone know where Tie Creek, Deer Creek and Johnny Creek are? All are in the northern portion of Archuleta County, and all are tributaries of East Fork just before the confluence.

Laughlin Park has been in the news recently with reference to Forest Service land trades. Do you know where it is? It lies south and west of Forest Road 037. Oh, sure, you say, and where is that?

It runs west off U.S. 160 just south of where Coal Creek drains into the San Juan almost directly east of Jackson Mountain.

I'm reasonably sure you all know where that is but, in case I'm wrong, watch for the Jackson Mountain Road signs showing a narrow gravel road running west off U.S. 160.

Still looking for something closer to town, something you might recognize?

How about Stinking Springs Canyon? The head of it lies a scant mile southeast of Sunetha Flats. Of what? Sunetha Flats, once the original golf course in the area, lies east of Dr. Mary Fisher Clinic.

I'm sure you all know where Martinez Canyon is and that Martinez Creek drains into Stollsteimer Creek which in turn drains into the Piedra River south of Chimney Rock.

But, what about Bull Creek, Goose Creek and Ignacio Creek?

They, too, all drain into the Piedra south of Chimney Rock, but from the west rather than east.

The county has dozens of mountains and peaks, sites like Haystack Mountain, Horse Mountain, Mule Mountain, Coyote Hill and The Ant Hill.

And it has a Death Valley Creek. Can anyone tell me where it is?


90 years ago

Taken from The Pagosa Springs SUN files of July 9, 1915

The big three-day celebration began Thursday morning, July 1st, with music by the Boy's band, followed by an assortment of sports, including horse races, bucking bronco contests, foot races, drilling match, baseball, dancing and other amusements, a big game of baseball on Sunday, the 4th, completing the series of sports arranged for the edification of the hundreds of visitors who were present.

The old system wherein the county road funds were universally distributed as rewards for political favors has been relegated to the scrap heap.

Quite a large crowd from Chromo attended the Blanco picnic, which was a success all the way through.


75 years ago

Taken from SUN files of July 11, 1930

Pagosa Springs was crowded Friday with visitors and local residents in observance of July 4th, the main attractions being the baseball game in the afternoon and the fireworks display and dances in the evening. The one-day celebration was in charge of the Pagosa Baseball Club, which realized a fair sum for the use of the organization after all expenses were paid.

One of the most popular places in town right now is the new mud-bath accommodations at Carlsbad Lodge, established a short time ago by Mrs. C.W. Van Pelt. The rheumatic and otherwise afflicted patients are not only obtaining surprising and immediate relief from their ills but appreciate the comfortable and sanitary needs provided for the use of this treatment.


50 years ago

Taken from SUN files of July 8, 1955

The rodeo this year was one of the best ever produced here and an estimated crowd of 4,500 saw 105 contestants vie for the prizes in the various events. Some of the roughest, toughest rodeo stock ever to hit these parts gave the cowboys a rough time in all events. As usual, one of the biggest attractions at the rodeo and in the parades was the appearance of Fred (Red Ryder) Harman and Little Beaver. Fred Harman has also written a song and this was played during the rodeo.

A forest fire broke out on Reservoir Hill Wednesday during the noon hour and for a time threatened to wipe out the entire stand of timber on that hill. It was brought under control by late afternoon and burned over an estimated 25 acres.


25 years ago

Taken from SUN files of July 10, 1980

One of the largest crowds in the history of the Red Ryder Roundup was present July 4 for the parade and rodeo. The crowd on July 5 was smaller, but about average for that date. The rodeo was outstanding, according to rodeo enthusiasts, and a large number of cowboys from all over the West participated. Rodeo stock of Buster Webb's string was tough and at the end of the rodeo the number of successful rides was small.

Four persons survived a light plane crash near Banded Peak, east of Chromo, Monday afternoon and are in an Alamosa Hospital. They are reported as in serious condition. The plane crashed at an elevation above 11,000 feet and was found just about on the Archuleta-Conejos County line.



STEVENS FIELD: Smooth and on schedule

By John Middendorf

Staff Writer

The Stevens field airport runway, Flight Base Operations facility and new hangar construction projects are progressing on schedule.

Due to resourceful juggling of airplane parking spots from the main terminal to the midfield apron, most planes have seen little interruption of takeoff, landing and airplane parking services during the construction, which began earlier in June.

Use of larger jets is limited during the construction due to the shortened 4,000-foot runway. Prior to the airport improvement projects, larger jets could make use the additional taxiway extension of runway 1/19 for their takeoffs and landings, if needed. Now 5,000 feet of the old taxiway is again dirt, with the concrete removed in preparation for the improved main runway extension to 8,100 feet in length. The larger jets could possibly land, but they would have trouble taking off using the shorter runway, according to Chris Scarpa, the airport's maintenance manager.

Except for a three-day closure of Taxiway B during the relocation of a water tower, there has been little interruption of services for smaller planes. This is good news for pilots who came to Pagosa for the Fourth of July celebrations. Bridget Royston, the Fixed Based Operator's mechanic, calls this past weekend, "One of the busiest weekends of the year" for the airport.

Adam Bruss, out-of-state resident with a second home in downtown Pagosa, arrived 9 a.m. Friday morning with his wife, two kids and their family dog, in his 1968 Cessna 210, after taking off from Phoenix at 7 a.m. Their plans included flyfishing, hiking, canoeing and attending the Red Ryder Roundup over the Fourth of July weekend. Bruss described the temporary rotomilled and tack-oil sealed taxiway from the main landing area as "OK, maybe even better than the old taxiway," and commented that the construction projects taking place have not caused any difficulty in his use of the airport, though he admitted his vintage plane could take the bumps better than many other planes.

Bruss is also a part owner of a jet which will require the longer runway, when completed, and he is on the list for a larger hangar at Stevens Field once the new Flight Base Operations facility and hangars are complete.

According to Jesus Moncada, the site engineer for Kirkland Construction, pilots have been "very cooperative" with the construction schedule, and he expects the new longer runway to be completed on schedule by early September, despite a current change order in process from the FAA involving additional preparation for future development.

Everything is "smooth and on schedule," said Scarpa.


Rotary announces parade winners

Rotary Independence Day Parade 2005 winners.

Commercial - first, Wings Over Pagosa LLC, $100; second, P.R.E.C.O. Plumbing and Heating, $50; third, A&M Construction, $25.

Non-Profit - first, Habitat for Humanity, $100; second (tie), American Legion and Red Hats, $40 each.

Youth - first, Archuleta County 4-H, $100; second, Pagosa Springs Gymnastics, $50; third, Cub Scout Pack 807, $25.

Individuals - first, Harvey and Evangeline Catchpole, $100; second, Bob and Janis Moomaw, $50; third, Majestic K. Andalusians, $25.

Musical - first, Mountain Harmony Ladies Barbershop Chorus, $100; second, Pagosa Springs Music Boosters, $50; third, Four Corners Folk Festival , $25.

2005 Judges: Shannon and Marcy Bryant, Sandia Park, N.M.; Matt and Angela Davis, Cedar Crest, N.M.; Velta McNatt, Jonesboro, Ark.

Prize checks will be mailed this year.

FLC cosponsors Durango festival

The Fort Lewis College Environmental Center cosponsors "Swadeshi on the Green: A Festival of Local Self-Sufficiency," 11:30 a.m.-6 p.m. July 10 at Oakhaven Permaculture Center, 179 County Road 124 near Hesperus. The celebration of local culture and production features food and music, plus workshops and demonstrations to help people learn to grow mushrooms, make beer, convert from diesel to biodiesel, find native herbs, grow their own food, install wind or solar power, and spin and weave wool. A $5 donation is suggested. Participants are asked to carpool, bring their own water bottles and leave dogs at home. Contact Oakhaven at 259-5445.


Pagosa's Past

To complicate everything, a high mountain winter was on its way.

By John M. Motter

PREVIEW Columnist

Last week we reported on the first actions establishing Fort Lewis in Pagosa Springs, starting in late October of 1878. One of the first tasks, of course, was to purchase food for men and horses. An additional task was to purchase materials with which to construct the fort.

This all sounds simple enough, but the nearest points of supply were Tierra Amarilla about 60 miles south, or Animas City, about 60 miles west. Both supply points were pretty frontierish themselves and calling the routes between these settlements "roads" was probably an overstatement. To complicate everything, a high mountain winter was on its way.

A few weeks later, we read Special order No. 7 from Camp Lewis, dated Dec. 12, 1878. From the hand of Capt. Hartz, 15th Infantry, commanding, we learn of the following improvision because supplies were not forthcoming.

"Par. 1. Owing to the heavy fall of snow and the impossibility of securing a sufficient supply of forage for the public animals at this place, 2 Lt. John F. Guilfoyle from 'D' Co. 9th Cavalry will proceed tomorrow morning to Animas City, Colo. with a detachment from 'D' Co. 9th Cav. of one non-commissioned officer and seven men, all the cavalry horses and such other public animals as are not required for immediate use. He will obtain the necessary stabling and corrall (sic) accommodations, and the allowance of hay for public animals not in field service from the U.S. forage agency at that place, also the wood allowance for the detachment under his command. The allowance of grain for animals not in field service will be fed from the grain belonging to the Quartermaster Dept. now in store at that place. He will hold himself, the detachment, and animals in his charge in readiness to return to this place at an hour's notice. The detachment will be rationed for 30 days from and including the 13 inst.

"The Quartermaster Dept. will furnish the necessary transportation.

"Par. 2. Private Samuel Wilson, 'B' Co. 15 infantry will proceed tomorrow morning to Fort Garland, Colo., in charge of two six mule teams belonging to that post. He will go via Tierra Amarilla and will be governed in his drives by the forage orders that will be furnished him by the Quartermaster Dept. at this place, endeavoring as far as practicable to stop at regularly appointed forage agencies, so as to secure proper shelter overnight.

"Private M. Pruder 'B' Co. 15 Infantry will accompany the transportation as escort and will be under the orders of Private Wilson. The transportation and escort will be reported to the C.O. Fort Garland, Colo., immediately on it arrival. The teamsters and escort will be rationed and animals foraged in kind or by order to include the 25 inst.

"Par. 3. 1st Lt. G. Valois, 9th Cavalry, will take charge of 'D' Co. 9th Cavalry and the company property attached thereto, in addition to his other duties, during the temporary absence of 2 Lt. J.F. Guilfoyle, the company commander."

Motter's note: Hartz had to move the cavalry horses to Animas City because he could not get a sufficient amount of hay and grain delivered to Pagosa Springs.

The orders sending the six-mule teams to Fort Garland do not specify a route other than by way of Tierra Amarilla. It is my understanding that, during winter, the route went south below and around the southern San Juans by way of Tierra Amarilla, Ojo Caliente, Tres Piedras, Conejos, Alamosa and Fort Garland. During winter there was simply no way to cross the available mountain passes with wagons.

Pagosa Sky Watch

Deep Impact a big hit for NASA

By James Robinson

SUN Columnist

Moon: This week the moon is in the waxing crescent phase with only about 2 percent of the moon's visible surface illuminated tonight.

With only a small portion of the moon illuminated, dark skies and prime, star gazing conditions should continue through July 9.

Planets: Uranus and Neptune can be difficult to locate for the backyard astronomer armed with just eyes or binoculars. However, with just a thin sliver of moon, dark skies will prevail over Pagosa Springs and along with them will come a greater chance of seeing these two far-off planets.

Uranus is a greenish colored, gas giant planet with an eleven-ring ring system similar to Saturn's, although the rings are not quite as elaborate or visually stunning. Nine faint rings were discovered in 1977, but Voyager 2 missions in 1986 revealed a total of 11 rings and 21 moons.

Uranus is interesting for its rings, but it's the planet's bizarre rotational axis that makes it truly unique. Research indicates that the axis of Uranus' rotation is nearly in the same plane as its orbit, meaning that one of the poles is pointing toward the sun, while the other is in darkness for decades. One theory for this bizarre axial tilt is that Uranus suffered a collision with another large object which knocked the planet out of a more normal rotational alignment.

This magnitude 6.0 planet will be brightest between August and September, yet it is easily visible now, with binoculars or the naked eye, as it moves through the constellation Aquarius.

In nearby Capricornus, savvy sky watchers with steady binocular-holding hands or a good amateur telescope can get a glimpse of the blue, gas giant Neptune. Unfortunately, amateur astronomers will have difficulty discerning cloud features in the planet's atmosphere, yet the distinct bluish hue of this 7.8 magnitude planet will be easily identifiable. The planet's bluish color comes from high concentrations of methane gas in the planets's atmosphere.

Stars and Constellations:

For many skywatchers, the star Vega (alpha Lyrae) is the summer star. Although it first appears in early April, the star moves to a greater position of prominence throughout spring, and by early July, it holds a position almost directly overhead.

The star, found in the constellation Lyra (The Lyre), is a brilliant, blue-white star about 25 light years away.

The name Vega means "swooping eagle" and this probably refers to the fact that past sky watchers said the constellation the star resides in resembled more an eagle or a vulture than a stringed harp-like instrument.

Vega is the fifth brightest star in the sky and professional observations indicate it is surrounded by a disc of dust from where planets might be forming.

Vega is easily discernible with the naked eye and is also part of a popular summer asterism - the Summer Triangle.

By the first week of June the three stars in the Summer Triangle are fully visible in the night sky. The star Vega makes the asterism's western-most point, Deneb, the northernmost star of the group and Altair the easternmost star.

Altair, alpha Aquilae, is part of the constellation Aquila, the eagle. According to Greek mythology, Aquila represents the bird that carried Zeus' thunderbolts. The name Altair is derived from the Arabic, al-nasr al tair, "the flying eagle."

Altair is a magnitude 0.76 white star at 17 light years away. This makes it one of the closest, naked eye objects.

Deneb, alpha Cygni, lies in the constellation Cygnus, the Swan. The swan represents Zeus' disguise used to travel incognito on his scandalous forays to visit Leda, the wife of King Tyndareus of Sparta.

The swan's tail is marked by Deneb, a magnitude 1.2 blue-white supergiant about 3200 light years away. The constellation is also referred to as the Northern Cross.

About midway along the torso of the swan, near the star eta Cygni, lies an object that has astronomers fascinated - Cygnus X-1. Astronomers believe the object is a black hole orbiting a ninth magnitude blue-white supergiant.

To locate the Summer Triangle first locate the Big Dipper asterism with its two pointer stars, Dubhe and Merak and follow those to Polaris in Ursa Minor.

From Polaris, look east and just slightly south for the next bright, blue-white star about 20 degrees away. (About the distance across both hands when they are held up and together with the night sky as a backdrop.) This bright, blue-white star is Deneb and from there you can complete the triangle, with Vega to the southwest and Altair to the south.

Deep Impact

On July 4, NASA declared its Deep Impact mission a smashing success. As scheduled, the Deep Impact Probe collided with the comet Tempel 1 at 1:52 am EDT.

According to a press release from NASA, "The impact generated an immense flash of light, which provided an excellent light source for the two cameras on the Deep Impact mother ship."

"They say a picture can speak a thousand words, but when you take a look at some of the ones we captured in the early morning hours of July 4, 2005, I think we can write a whole encyclopedia," said Deep Impact Project Manager Rick Grammier of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in the same press release.

NASA scientists said the purpose of the Deep Impact mission was to provide a glimpse into the core of a comet, where they said material from the formation of the solar system remains largely unchanged. NASA scientists said that by analyzing data collected from the Tempel 1 impact they might reach a better understanding of how the solar system formed.

Chris Wilcox of the Navy Research Labs adaptive optics program in Albuquerque, N.M. called the project, "essentially a proof-of-concept" mission.

"This asteroid was not on a collision course for Earth, but they wanted to test sending a probe to it and to launch a small missile at it," Wilcox said.

"I am very excited. With this being a success, it has given NASA the credibility it needs to get funding for other types of searches for objects that could affect our safety. It is a huge stepping stone for other projects and technologies of this type."



Date High Low Precipitation

Type Depth Moisture