August 11, 2005

Front Page

Trujillo Heights project means homes for 415

By John Middendorf

Staff Writer

A public hearing for a 52-acre development on Trujillo Road will be held 5 p.m. Tuesday in Town Hall.

If the project goes through as planned, town planner Tamra Allen said, it could potentially double the neighborhood populations of south Pagosa.

In an anticipated impact report by Davis Engineering, a 10-year projection estimates the development will increase the volume of cars on Trujillo Road by more than 2,000 cars per day. The current traffic volume for Trujillo road is 1,000 cars per day.

Under the proposal, 52 acres of the Pagosa Springs South Addition, which was annexed by the town in 1981, will be subdivided with the development of 134 single-family homes, 34 duplexes, and six apartments planned. With typical averages of 2.5 people per single family home, and 2 people per duplex or apartment, this translates to housing for approximately 415 people.

The property is located near the bend where Trujillo road turns south, directly west of the high school. The property is currently being used for horse pasture.

The site includes an area of wetlands, of which 1.65 acres is planned as open space.

To be called Trujillo Heights, the development proposal comes from Trujillo Partners, LLC, which is a joint venture between two limited liability companies managed by Tracy Reynolds and Pat Alley respectively, according to Reynolds. Reynolds said the property was purchased 6-8 weeks ago.

After the public hearing for the development, the Town Planning Commission will provide an approval or denial recommendation.

The Town Council will review the commission's recommendation at its next regularly scheduled meeting on Sept. 6.


Four area burglaries appear work of one

By Sarah Smith

SUN Intern

A string of burglaries that hit Pagosa Country earlier this week was most likely connected, according to officials.

Detective Scott Maxwell, Pagosa Springs Police Department, said the four burglaries were probably commited by the same suspect. He also said all the burglaries were commited sometime late Sunday night or early Monday morning.

Four different buildings were burgled; two under county jurisdiction, and two under municipal.

The Pagosa Springs Police Department received the first report Monday around 6:20 a.m. that the Coldwell Banker building, 2383 W. U.S. 160, had been broken into. Officer Tony Kop responded. The perpetrator reportedly entered the building and broke into the safe, stealing an undisclosed amount of money.

Officer Kop then responded to the The Mud Shaver Car Wash, 950 Rosita Street, at 8:55 a.m. An undisclosed amount of cash was reportedly taken from a change machine.

The two burglaries under county jurisdiction were also reported Monday morning. Deputy Tony Bybee responded to the calls.

Bybee responded to the Dental Hygiene Clinic, 68 Bastille Drive, at 7:05 a.m. The suspect alledgedly broke in through the door, creating about $600 worth of damage. Five dollars worth of gel applicator tips were taken from the building.

Sandy's Car Wash, 67 Navajo Trail, reported the door was pried open. Deputy Bybee responded at 8 a.m., but at the moment, the Sheriff's Department is unaware of any loss.

The Pagosa Springs Police Department and the Archuleta County Sheriff's Department are working "hand in glove" to find the perpetrator, according to Lieutenant Eugene Reilly of the Sheriff's Department. The case is still under investigation.


Long-delayed school support building faces

old woes, spiraling cost

By Sarah Smith

SUN Intern

After opening the bids for the construction of the new maintenance and transportation facility nearly one year ago, construction is still delayed.

In a presentation Tuesday during the meeting of the board of education for Archuleta School District 50 Joint, the district's maintenance director Steve Walston cited some reasons for the delays, including faulty soil analyses and an unstable civil design plan.

Walston said construction can not begin until they have "stable soil results and a static unchanging civil design."

When the bids were opened Aug. 19, 2004, Jaynes Corporation was the lowest bidder with an estimated price of $1,577,893.

The board then decided to put the project on hold and investigate other options. Since the delays, the original bid price has gone up, due to inflation of construction materials and gasoline.

Jaynes Corporation is currently working to resubmit the bid figures to reflect today's construction prices.

Superintendent Duane Noggle asked for the board's authorization to continue what he called "delicate negotiations" with Jaynes Corporation, and eventually enter into contract with Jaynes Corporation "if reasonable."

Director Mike Haynes, board president, was sympathetic to the inflation.

"With my business I understand, and Jon (Forrest), too, as builders, we know that many prices have gone up in the past year," Haynes said.

Even so, Haynes was hesitant to enter into contract until a "reasonable" price is defined more clearly.

Business Manager Nancy Schutz stated that although there is no firm number yet, the figure they are working with is still within the budget allocated for the new facility.

Board members agreed that reopening bidding would do no good, since all bids, including the one from Jaynes, would come back much higher.

One board member likened reopening the bids to "shooting ourselves in the foot."

Vice president Clifford Lucero said he thought continuing negotiation with Jaynes would be the best course of action.

Noggle reaffirmed that Jaynes is willing to work with them to make sure the price hike would not be too steep. "It's called trust," he said.

In the end, the motion was passed, and negotiations with the Jaynes Corporation will continue.

Walston said they're still uncertain as to when construction on the MaT building will commence.


 Inside The Sun

Michael and Susan Neder named to chair United Way drive

By Stacia Kemp

Special to The SUN

Michael and Susan Neder have been named cochairs for Archuleta County's 2005 United Way Campaign.

The Neders have been active in the community for 15 years, raising three children in Pagosa Springs, and supporting and being involved in numerous activities and projects to better the community.

In addition to volunteering in support of the schools, 4-H, and Music Boosters, they participate in the many activities of Rotary Club, of which Susan is the current president-elect. She also volunteers her time to work with the Pagosa Springs Arts Alliance, Legal Aid, Archuleta County Economic Development, and the Living Law Institute for Resolving Conflict.

"We are so excited to be able to work with the United Way campaign this year. The United Way and the organizations it helps to fund really are making a difference in the lives of so many people in Pagosa Springs and Archuleta County," said Susan Neder. "We can't think of a better organization to be involved with, and we hope everyone in Pagosa Springs will join us in supporting this fund-raising drive. No matter how much or how little you feel you can afford to give, every dollar matters. Helping people, even in a small way, is such a huge act of caring — it doesn't just make the people that are being helped feel good, it makes the giver feel great too," said Neder.

United Way hopes to raise $66,000 in Archuleta County this year to support 17 programs that address local needs related to education, crisis intervention, family support, youth services, senior services and affordable housing.

"Since the money you give stays right here in Archuleta County, you know that whatever you give will help your friends and neighbors and make Pagosa Springs a stronger community," Neder said.

The 17 programs helped by United Way are operated by 15 organizations that serve the citizens of Archuleta County, including: American Red Cross, Archuleta County Education Center, Archuleta County Victim Assistance Program, Community Connections, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Habitat for Humanity of Archuleta County, Housing Solutions of the Southwest, Pagosa Outreach Connection, San Juan Basin Area Agency on Aging, Seeds of Learning Family Center: Southwest Colorado Mental Health Center, Southwest Youth Corps and Southwest Safehouse.

Local volunteers and a part-time staff person raise money to support these programs through a variety of special events as well as a direct appeal for donations through one-time gifts or payroll deduction.

Local volunteers are also responsible for seeing that the funds that are raised locally are best invested in the community and they determine how the funds are allocated to each program. The Archuleta County United Way Advisory Council includes: Dick Babillis, Sam Conti, Mary Jo Coulehan, Gene Crabtree, Lori Doles, Bob Eggleston, Carmen Hubbs, Bonnie Masters, Mary McKeehan, Don McKeehan, Lisa Scott and Don Thompson. Stacia Kemp is the Archuleta County Coordinator for United Way of Southwest Colorado.

"Please join us at one of our upcoming events - Mini-Golf at Bogey's Aug. 14, the seventh annual golf tournament on Aug. 27, or our trail ride on Sept. 10. Or consider a one-time gift or a pledge for payroll deduction in support of United Way this year," said Neder.

For more information about United Way in Archuleta County, call Stacia Kemp at 264-3230. Gifts to United Way are tax-deductible, can be designated to support a particular agency, and can be mailed to Archuleta County United Way, P.O. Box 4274, Pagosa Springs, CO 81147.


Pagosan gets 10-year term for narcotics

By Sarah Smith

SUN Intern

A Pagosa man was sentenced to ten years in the Department of Corrections last week on drug charges.

Mark Coughlin, 36, was charged with possession with intent to sell of a schedule two narcotic. He pled guilty Aug. 1 in district court.

After numerous tips of sales of methamphetamine and marijuana, the Archuleta County Sheriff's Department and the Pagosa Springs Police Department obtained a warrant to search Coughlin's home Oct. 26, 2004. They found cocaine, marijuana, paraphanelia and material associated with the distribution of narcotics. Coughlin was arrested on charges of unlawful distribution and possession of a class two scheduled narcotic.

Coughlin had previous charges, including a marijuana offense in Nov. 2003.

Couglin was held in county jail until his hearing Aug. 1. He will receive 278 days credit for his time served towards his ten year sentence.


Town explores business licensing options

By James Robinson

Staff Writer

For business owners in many towns across state, obtaining a business license is a part of life. Although this hasn't been the case in Pagosa Springs, that may soon change.

The idea of the town instituting a business licensing program has been a recent topic of discussion among town staff and the Pagosa Springs Town Council; and the idea was formally presented as a draft ordinance at the Aug. 2, town council meeting.

During the meeting, Town Manager Mark Garcia said adopting a business license ordinance was not intended as a money making venture for the town. He said one of the primary reasons to institute business licensing is to better ensure that businesses operating within the town are collecting sales taxes and sending those funds to the state.

Town Clerk Deanna Jaramillo, who is spearheading the project, said sales tax collection is critical to Pagosa Springs' economy and that a percentage of the collected revenue coming back to the town provides funds for capital improvement projects such as roads, parks and town facilities. She said Pagosa Springs is one of the last towns in the state to adopt a business licensing program.

She said the current system of businesses collecting sales taxes and forwarding those funds to the state is governed largely by the honor system.

Without licensing, she said, it is more difficult to know who is in operation and if a business is meeting its sales tax obligations. For example, she said, itinerant vendors can pass through town and conduct business with little oversight from either town or the state.

And lacking oversight, Jaramillo said, it is difficult for the town to address or correct any sales tax collection problems and they must rely on the state for enforcement. She said, state enforcement can be a slow process and often requires local government to notify the state that a problem exists before the state takes action. Business licensing, Jaramillo said, is not necessarily the ultimate cure solving sales tax collection issues, but it may be one way to keep better track of business conducted in town, and may enable the town to step in and assist the state if a problem arises.

Bob Goodman, owner of Goodman's Department Store, said sales taxes are vital to the local economy and that every business, temporary, transient or permanent should contribute to the community by collecting and submitting sales taxes. He said although business licensing would not be foolproof in ensuring sales taxes were collected, he supports it; and said it would "level the playing field," and would be a step in the right direction.

"I think it's a great idea," he said.

But Lvonne Wilson, owner of Home Again, was skeptical and somewhat puzzled by the proposition. She said she had received the postcard sent by the town and was confused and surprised to learn the town is considering business licensing. She said she thought she had already applied and paid for a license to operate in town.

She expressed concern that a licensing program might require additional town staff and could burden town government with additional and perhaps unnecessarry bureaucracy and expenses. She expressed concern about licensing fees and questioned the town's role in a business' collection of sales taxes. She asked how licensing would benefit business owners.

"What would change for us?" she said.

Beyond sales tax collection, Jaramillo said, business licensing would ensure that a business was in full compliance with all town regulations such as fire codes, building codes, water and sewer requirements, signage and design criteria and had obtained the necessary health and food service permits prior to opening. She said these steps are already required by the town and that business licensing would formalize an already established process.

"The steps will be more streamlined, so something doesn't get skipped," Jaramillo said.

While the proposed licensing fees have not yet been determined, Jaramillo said town staff is looking at fees levied by nearby towns to help them determine an appropriate, but moderate, fee.

She said staff has discovered there is a wide spectrum of fees with extremes on either end.

"We're trying to keep the fee minimal," she said.

While the amount has not yet been determined, Jaramillo said it would be a graduated license fee based on the number of employees.

"A business with zero to five employees would pay less than a business with six to 10 employees. The less employees, the less you pay," Jaramillo said.

She said a fee schedule would be presented at upcoming town meetings, the first of which is a public hearing to be held at the town's planning commission meeting 5 p.m. Aug. 16. Following the public hearing, a first reading of the ordinance will occur 5 p.m. Sept. 6 during a regular Town Council meeting. Depending on the outcome of the first reading, the ordinance could go to a second reading on Oct. 4 and adoption at that time.


County recycling program processing 50 tons a month

By John Middendorf

Staff Writer

"Every year the recycling program improves," said Clifford Lucero, Pagosa's solid waste director. "Newcomers moving to town are using the recycling more."

Not only does the recycling program save "air space," the skyward progression of the county's landfill, but it is also "ecologically wise," says Lucero.

Pagosa's recycling program began in 1991 under the guidance of Les Cameron, Nancy Green and Lucero, with the assistance of Gene Crabtree, a "major advocate of recycling," according to Lucero. Since then, it has become very successful, with about 50 tons of recyclable material being processed each month.

With only one employee managing the recycling program at the county transfer station on Trujillo Road, that's a lot of recycling. Lester Reeves, the recycling attendant, "is the reason the program has gone so far," according to Lucero.

Once items are brought to the recycling center, they are transported on a weekly basis to Durango, where the City of Durango Recycle Center processes Pagosa's containers. With a staff of 4 or 5, the Durango team will transfer the material to conveyor belts with Bobcat tractors, where it is sorted and "contaminating" items removed. A container from Pagosa, which can contain 30 cubic yards of material, may take several hours to process, according to Danny Montoya, the Durango center's floor manager.

"Education about sorting is important," according to Montoya, who adds, "generally the stuff from Pagosa is pretty good," referring to how the material has been presorted. If a load is too contaminated with non-recyclable material, it will just go into the trash, he said. The Durango center also receives recyclables from Ignacio, Telluride, Mesa Verde, and Silverton, as well as Archuleta County's recycling center in Arboles.

Once separated, the sorted material is compressed into 1/2 ton bales, and transported to processing centers around the country, with the exception of mixed color glass, which is pulverized into 3/8 inch aggregate and sold locally for about $10 per cubic yard. The glass aggregate is used for landscaping and other uses, with one customer in Mancos using it for stucco, according to Montoya. Brown glass is sold to the Coors Brewing Company, which regenerates it back into their characteristic brown bottles.

Besides glass, the recycling center accepts tin cans, aluminum cans, corrugated cardboard, mixed paper, and no. 1 and no. 2 plastic containers (the type number is found inside a small rounded triangle embossed on the plastic). Bleach, oil, and yogurt plastic containers are generally not recyclable, and will contaminate the load. Plastic bags are not recyclable, but plastic shopping bags can be returned to City Market for processing.

Mixed paper includes most light colored paper, including junk mail, paperback books (with covers removed), newspaper and magazines; staples are okay, but paperclips and other metal fasteners should be removed. Telephone books are recycled separately but can also be dropped off at the recycling center. Paperboard-like cereal boxes, beer and soda containers, and egg cartons cannot be recycled locally.

To understand the logic behind paper recycling, consider the process of returning the paper products back into fibers: the paper is added to a big vat of water and agitated to break up the fibers. Long paper fibers are desired for higher quality recycled paper products. Additives like chemicals, wax, and food residues do not break down in water and will muck up the process. Dark colored paper and the thicker brown Kraft type envelopes will stain the whole batch. Paperboard, tissue paper, paper towels typically consist of short fiber material which is unsuitable for recycling.

Toxic materials that cannot be recycled should not be dumped into the trash. Batteries can be dropped off at the recycling and transfer station, where the Solid Waste Department distributes them to various receiving centers. Electronics like old computers can be taken to the school district, where John Kennedy has set up a recycling program, according to Lucero. Styrofoam peanuts can be taken to the local mailbox shipping companies.

Pagosa's recycling program is funded through the sale of $1 coupons which are purchased when people dump household garbage at the Pagosa and Arboles transfer stations. The funds are used to pay for Reeves' salary as well as offsetting the cost of transfer to Durango. Lucero believes an additional 40 percent of Pagosa's landfill material could be recycled (about 750 tons per month) and plans to bring in a consultant to expand the recycling program in 2006.

Kelly Simonson, a local resident since October, moved here from rural Oregon, where curbside recycling is common. Before she discovered Pagosa's recycling center, she took a batch of old batteries on a flight to Oregon where she was visiting friends, because she knew there they would be processed properly.

Recently, she was "thrilled to find the recycling center locally, and finds the "recycling guys very helpful," though she added she thinks the various containers could be labeled better. As she distributing her pre-sorted bins of materials into the various areas at the recycling center, she explained, "with the recycling center here, I can go for two months between trash pickups."

Pagosa Transfer and Recycling center is open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day of the week except Monday. For more information, see the Archuleta County website at and click on the solid waste department link.


River restoration plan permit comments due

By John Middendorf

Staff Writer

The Town of Pagosa nears completion of another step in the river restoration process as the public comment period for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers permit for Phase II of the project ends on Monday.

Interested parties should send substantive comments regarding the plan to the address listed below. Like all public processes, the land managers are looking for more than just a "yes" or "no" vote. A substantive comment involves one or more of the following: providing an opinion including the rationale for that opinion; providing new information pertaining to the proposed action; identifying a new issue or expanding an existing issue; pointing out a specific flaw; identifying a new source of credible research; and/or identifying a new alternative that meets the purpose and need for the action.

The permit application is being evaluated under Section 404 of the Clean Water Act for the discharge of dredged or fill material in waters of the United States.

The San Juan River through town has been in need of maintenance from previous restorations and improvements. Phase II includes replacing several of the previous "W" structures, which contain some large boulders that have been displaced by the fluctuating waters, with "U" structures, which are to be reinforced with grout. Some of the required bank stabilization will also require grouting boulders in place for long term stability.

As some of the boulders in the existing structures have gradually shifted over the years by higher flows, gaps are created which can create a hazardous condition for tubers and swimmers in the river (with their increased mobility, kayakers can generally maneuver out of the way).

When gaps in the structures occur, the nature of the "W" shape can often cause a "strainer" to occur at the middle peak. A strainer refers to a collection of material, typically logs and brush, which can pass water but not an object such as a person. When caught in a strainer, the force of the water can hold the victim underwater with tremendous pressure. The gaps can also create a limb entrapment hazard for a passing swimmer.

In high waters, the upstream angling of the "W" shape often creates a dangerous "keeper" hole, which can hold a swimmer and actually push the swimmer upstream into the more violent part of the hole.

The "U" structures, which utilize the structural stability of an arch, are reputed to be more durable and have a more aesthetic appeal, as well as providing the characteristic pool-drop-riffle-eddy-deep pool sequence that is thought to be beneficial for fish habitat.

The single "U" structure that was built last spring downtown just upstream from the Springs Resort has been a popular spot, with dozens of swimmers and tubers playing in the area every day, as well as a multitude of fishermen who can be seen casting in the deep pool below the structure.

The town plans to divert the river from one side to the other using temporary coffer dams during the low water months this fall to build the new structures, in order to prevent any construction materials, including live grout, to be released into the river during the building process.

A grant from the Great Outdoors Colorado fund is being sought from the town to help with costs. Wolf Creek Ski area is planning to donate the equipment as well as some manpower to help build the structures.

Once the Army Corps of Engineer's comment period is over, there will be the normal decision and appeal periods. "If everything goes well, we'll see the permit in October," said Mark Garcia, town manager. Garcia expects the project to begin soon after the permit is granted. He said once begun, the project should be completed by the end of the year. The plan also includes a diversion channel to replenish the water of the wetlands in the land between Town Hall and the Community Center and the river, which has had its sources depleted by geothermal water diversions.

Paralleling the river restoration improvements will be the construction of the River Walk and Town Park pedestrian bridge, a separate project funded by federal sources. In addition, work on the Sports Complex south of Apache Street has begun. The river walk will connect the town to the Sports Complex along the river.

The integration of the downtown projects is part of an overall plan. "The town started looking at the recreational opportunities in the river when we were looking at the design of the Sports Complex," said Julie Jessen, special projects director for the town. Angela Atkinson, executive director of the public/private nonprofit partnership Community Vision Council, said, "These projects represent significant opportunity for the integration of the collective visions of our community."

The Army Corps of Engineers permit documents can be found on the Town of Pagosa's Web site at Send comments to:

US Army Corps of Engineers

Durango Regulatory Office

278 Sawyer Drive No. 1

Durango, CO 81303

Attn: Kara Hellige


Sheep Creek bridge, trail comment sought

By James Robinson

Staff Writer

The Pagosa Ranger District of the U.S. Forest Service is seeking comments on the proposed Sheep Creek Bridge and Trail project.

The project, if approved, would involve repair or replacement of the existing Sheep Creek Bridge in addition to rerouting and reconstructing the Sheep Creek Trail from the bridge to about one mile east.

According to U.S. Forest Service documents, the existing bridge is supported by only three of its four support towers and poses a serious threat to those who might attempt to cross the bridge, and to kayakers and rafters should the bridge sink or collapse into the Piedra River. In addition, the steep grade of the trail on the approach to the crossing may be contributing to serious hillside erosion. Rerouting and trail reconstruction would seek to alleviate this problem.

The pre-decision Environmental Assessment is available for public review either at the Pagosa Ranger District's Pagosa Springs office, or on the web at

The comment period expires Sept. 10, and those wishing to do so should contact the Pagosa Ranger District office at (970) 264-1509 for complete instructions.


School board changes two bus routes; delays grad changes

By Sarah Smith

SUN Intern

In a meeting Tuesday, Archuleta County School District 50 Joint board of education members approved two major changes slated for the bus routes for the 2005-2006 school year.

The first change is for Bus 12, Route 4 in the Hatcher Lake area. Due to past problems in the winter, the bus will no longer go onto Saddle Circle, Hills Circle, Monte Vista or Hidden Drive.

The bus will instead stay on North Pagosa. Children who live on any of these four roads will need to catch the bus at the intersection of North Pagosa and their road; the bus will make stops at Saddle Circle and North Pagosa, Hills Circle and North Pagosa, Monte Vista and North Pagosa, and Hidden Drive and North Pagosa.

Children who catch the bus after the Saddle Circle and North Pagosa pick-up will need to be at their bus stops at least five minutes earlier than last year.

The second change is for Bus 17, Route 10 in the Holiday Acres area. Due to the county's concerns of steep grades, the bus will no longer travel on Coyote Court in Holiday Acres. It will travel along River Forest Road to Mayflower Drive, picking up kids along the way, and turning around at Mayflower Drive and Dandelion Drive. It will also travel along Holiday Drive, turning around at the intersection of Nighthawk Court and Shenandoah Drive.

Any children who live on Coyote Court can catch the bus at the Mayflower and Dandelion Drive turnaround at 7:20, or at the intersection of Coyote Court and Shenandoah Drive at 7:30.

All students who live along Route 10 and ride Bus 17 will need to catch their bus at least five minutes earlier than last year.

In other news, the board decided to postpone making a final decision on the proposal of upping the graduation requirements for Pagosa High School Students.

In the proposal, the number of credits needed to graduate would be raised from 24 to 28, and credits would be awarded for good attendance.

After an extensive discussion, the school board made a few changes in the proposal and decided to delay the final decision.

"We need to keep in mind it will be brand new, and there will be issues," said President Mike Haynes. "We need to be flexible."

The final vote will be held at the next meeting, Tuesday Aug. 16 at 6 p.m.

Next week's meeting will also be the final meeting in a series of candidate information sessions. Attendees will receive a brief overview of state and federal laws that govern local schools.

There are three seats open for candidacy, representing Districts 1, 4 and 5, respectively. Only one candidate, Linda Lattin, has been declared so far.

Petitions are available at the county clerk's office. A potential candidate must receive 50 qualifying signatures, certified by the county clerk. Every signer must be registered to vote and include their correct physical address.

The petition must be turned in by Aug. 26. Anyone may challenge the qualification of a candidate by going to the district court. If there is no competition, the election will be canceled. All elected members will be sworn in Nov. 16.


Comprehensive Plan workshop meetings scheduled next week

By James Robinson

Staff Writer

Following the first public information session held in mid-July, the town continues to move forward with the development of a Comprehensive Plan. More meetings are scheduled for next week.

Representatives of the land use consulting firm hired to help the town develop a comprehensive plan, Clarion Associates, will meet with the Pagosa Springs Town Council and the Pagosa Springs Planning Commission 5 p.m. Aug. 16 in town hall.

Town Manager Mark Garcia said the meeting will be in a work session format where Clarion Associates representatives will bring council members and planning staff "up to speed" on Comprehensive Plan issues. Garcia said the public may attend, but no comments will be taken during the session.

Town Planner Tamra Allen said Clarion Associates will meet Aug. 17 with the Citizens Advisory Committee, in a similar session.

The Citizens Advisory Committee is a 24-member group appointed by the Town Council to help with the Comprehensive Plan process.

During July's public forum, there was some confusion about the process and the difference between the development of the town's Comprehensive Plan and other recent planning efforts undertaken by local, nongovernmental groups.

Garcia said the private groups worked independently and in an advisory capacity to the town. He said some of their suggestions might ultimately be weaved into the fabric of the town's Comprehensive Plan, but the town's efforts are separate, independent and mandated by state statute.

Garcia said, once completed, the Comprehensive Plan will serve as a 10 to 20-year blueprint used to address growth, development and land use issues in the Town of Pagosa Springs.


'Ranch Watch' program initiated

The Archuleta County Sheriff's Department is announcing the start of a Ranch Watch Program specifically designed for the ranching and rural communities.

It is a collaborative effort between the Sheriff's Department and county residents and will begin with "Ranch Watch" signs being placed along county roads warning those roads are watched by neighbors and patrolled by deputies.

The signs include the "Ranch Watch" logo, and handcuffs with eyes, which is an effective deterrent against crime.

Signs are only part of the program. It takes neighbors looking out for one another, and citizens driving in rural or remote areas of the county to report any suspicious activity.

Sheriff's personnel will outline the program for groups or individual residents and are requesting volunteers. For more information, call Archuleta County Sheriff's Department at 970-264-2131.


LPEA mailing refunds with August statements

La Plata Electric Association (LPEA) recently announced refunds of $2,000,000 in patronage capital to its member/owners. Refunds will be credited to electric bills or mailed as checks throughout the month of August.

Since incorporation in 1939, LPEA has refunded over $21 million.

Greg Munro, LPEA chief executive officer, said of the refunds, "These refunds are a major point differentiating us from other types of utilities. We give the money back to our members instead of giving it to investors. Our sound fiscal policies combined with strong growth have allowed us to return to a positive financial position. As a result, we're able to refund patronage capital to our members."

Each year, the amount of electric payments above and beyond the cost of providing electric service (called margins) is accounted for in each consumer's name, in proportion to the consumer's contribution to LPEA margins.

This capital, along with borrowed funds, is used to finance electric system improvements. In other words, LPEA invests the margins back into the system to help build owners' equity and reduce the amount of money the Association has to borrow (thereby reducing interest charges). This allows LPEA to maintain system reliability at its highest level and still keep rates low.

Patronage capital refunds are the method by which electric cooperatives return some of the excess capital to the members/owners. When times are good and certain equity requirements (set by the Rural Utilities Service mortgage agreement) are met, the LPEA Board of Directors determines the amount of capital to be refunded.

This year's refunds are a combination of the following: 1) $1 million of the oldest capital credits (This retires all of 1985 and part of 1986); and 2) 1.925% of the remaining patronage capital. Therefore, customers with accounts stretching back to 1985 will receive refunds for all remaining capital for that year, plus a percentage of the money that has accrued in their capital accounts since 1985. Customers receiving electricity since 1985 will receive a percentage of the money in their total patronage capital account.

The percentage is determined by factors such as cash flow, equity requirements, financial stability and cash needs for future construction. Balancing these factors ensures that LPEA refunds the maximum amount while keeping adequate operating cash on hand and keeping owners' equity up to certain minimum levels.

Refunds will show up as a credit on the electric bills of most members. Members with refunds over $250 and members with inactive accounts will receive checks. Applying the refund as a credit on most bills saves approximately $15,000 per year in printing and mailing costs.


Kids rodeo winners for county fair listed

Events and winners from the county fair Kid's Rodeo, which took place on Sunday, are as follows:

Glove Race (6 years & under)

First - Dalton Lucero

Ribbon Race (ages 7-10)(team event)

First - Shayla Lucero/Kate Sharp

Second - George Wolf/Morgan Smith

Third - Reyes McInnis/Cassidy Deyapp

Ribbon Race (ages 11-13)(team event)

First - Cheyann Dixon/Katelynn McKree

Second - Marissa House/Beth Lucero

Third - Kelsey Lucero/Katelynn McRree

Barrel Race (ages 7-10)

First - Kaleb Herrera

Second - Kate Sharp

Third - George Wolf

Barrel Race (ages 11-13)

First - Beth Lucero

Second - Katelynn McKree

Third - Marissa House

Barrel Race (ages 14-19)

First - Chelsea Montroy

Second - Mallorie Godbold

Third - Kylie Corcoran

Hitchhiking Race (ages 14-19)(team event)

First - Jamie Vernon/Berkley Ruthart

Second - Chelsea Montroy/Berkley Ruthart

Calf Riding (ages 7-10)

First - Brady Franklin

Second - Cassidy Deyapp

Third - George Wolf

Steer Riding (ages 11-13)

First - Cody Snow

Family Ribbon Roping (team event)

First - Ryan Montroy/Jake Montroy

Second - Beth Lucero/Greg Lucero

Third - Faya Wolf/Mike Wolf

Breakaway Roping (ages 11-13)

First - Marissa House

Second - Beth Lucero

Third - Waylon Lucero

Steer Hide Drag Race (Jackpot team event)

First - Randy Baxstrom

Second - Katelynn McKree

Third - Hunter Williams

Note: Partner names for this event are not available

Awards were silver belt buckles to first place, silver belt disks to second place and ribbons to third place winners.

Leslie and Jake Montroy were the rodeo managers; Larry Ashcraft was the announcer; timekeepers were Mary Jo Coulehan and Diane Pack; and stock was provided by Jim Bramwell, Dwayne Shahan, J.R. Ford and Mike Wolf.

Entertainment was provided by the Old West Performers.

Sponsors for the rodeo were Rocky Mountain Wildlife Park, Taminah Gallery and Ponderosa Do It Best. Belt buckle sponsors for the 2005 Kid's Rodeo were all from Alpine Lakes Ranch and include: Jeanette Bean and Allan Armstrong; Alicia and Mike Brodner; Dolly and Jim Cowley, Pati and Mitch Frank; Marti and Bill Gallo, Nancy and Jeff Grovhoug; Robyn and Bob Harrington; Linda and Steve Hatfield, Karen and Bruce Hoch; Eileen and Bill Ide; Susan and Mike Johnson; Ann and Larry Mowen; Deborah and Ron Parker; Margie and David Richter; Debbie and Loyd Robeson; Peg and Tom Sebanc; Jean and Gautam Shah; Gail and Dan Shepherd, Kathy and Harvey Syverson; Susan and Tom Thorpe; Dawn and Chris Truax; and Mary and Bob Wood.



At 74, John J. Taylor tops Pyramid again

By Becky Guilliams

Special to The SUN

At age 22, John Taylor made a trip up the Pine River to climb the Rio Grande Pyramid with his friend Ed Toner. On that same trip, they led their group through what was called The Window. This summer, 52 years later and at age 74, Taylor undertook a similar journey and conquered the mountain again.

Taylor has lived in Hinsdale County most of his life, the family having homesteaded the south end in 1896. When Taylor was young, the family started camping in the high country of the San Juans, taking him along.

Since then the outdoors has been his playground. Besides camping, skiing, snowmobiling, and hiking, he spent as much time learning the outdoors and backcountry as he could. And he's still just a kid at heart.

On July 29, a party of family and friends departed from Poison Park Trailhead, headed into the backcountry to try to climb the Rio Grande Pyramid again.

Ageless John Taylor was a member of that party, his third such attempt. Previous trips had been plagued with a lost rider and a lost horse.

This trip had our herd of ranch animals ill, but a local outfitter, Back Country Outfitters, provided horses and pack animals to keep the dream alive.

The following day, some of the participating team saw the Window for the first time. Taylor said the trails we followed were not there when he made his first climb.

We left camp about 8:30 a.m. to start the climb to Rio Grande Pyramid, and started the actual assault on the mountain about 10:30 a.m.

We tied our riding horses to some very tiny scrub willows and friends Ron and Marcia Tinsley stayed there to watch them.

The rest of us were on top just a few seconds before noon — at 13,873 feet..

Whew! What a view!

And there was John, right along side. At 74, he had again conquered the mountain.

As we left the top we saw a group of horsemen headed toward The Window and learned later at least one of them had been a student of John's at Pagosa Springs High School, where he taught for 18 years.

A number his science classes were also in his Science Club and all learned a great deal in those outdoor classrooms.

Members of the party, in addition to John, myself and the Tinsleys, David and Courtney Gulliams and Raymond Taylor.


Clay target shoot set for

prospective dove, grouse hunters

Dove and grouse season is just around the corner. To celebrate, the Upper San Juan Sportsmans Club will host another in a series of sporting clay target shoots 12:30 p.m. Sunday.

The location for the shoot is 1.2 miles south of the fairgrounds on Highway 84. There will be a sign on the green gate at the site. All clay target shooters are invited regardless of skill level.

This opportunity is all about you, the shooting sportsman. For further information call J.P. at 731-2295 or Nolan at 264-2660.


Moose or elk? Don't mistake the two

By Holger Jensen

Special to The SUN

Introduced to Colorado 24 years ago, moose are thriving in many parts of the state and elk hunters should know the difference between these two ungulates.

A hunter who mistakes a bull moose for a bull elk can be fined more than $11,000.

This is a mistake that should not be made, being that the animals are vastly different in size, color, horn shape and habits. The Shiras moose is the smallest of four sub-species and much smaller than an Alaska moose but a mature bull still weighs 1,200 pounds, about twice as much as the average bull elk. Moose are dark brown and appear almost black. Elk are light brown - a bull can be almost golden - with a pale yellow rump.

A moose has a very large, long nose and a "bell" under the throat, compared to the relatively narrow snout of an elk. A mature bull also has broad, flat antlers with paddles unlike the pointed antlers of an elk. But the antlers on some young bull moose have not flattened out yet, so hunters need to look over the entire animal before pulling the trigger.

The largest member of the deer family, moose have adapted to a variety of habitats. They favor abundant willows along streams and ponds, but "ridge runners" also forage in areas of lodgepole pine, oakbrush, aspen, spruce fir and even sagebrush - in other words where elk can be found.


They act very differently, however, when approached by humans. Typically, moose will not flee like elk at the sight of a hunter.

Despite these readily apparent differences, every hunting season brings a number of illegal moose kills. Circumstances vary from mistaken identity by hunters to blatant poaching. The common denominator in most accidental kills is the absence of optical aids, such as binoculars or spotting scope, to properly identify the species.

The Division of Wildlife stresses that the accidental killing of a moose does not necessarily lead to prosecution and may not count as part of the hunter's bag limit if he or she reports the incident promptly and takes care of the meat. Officers will conduct an investigation to determine if the kill is accidental - i.e. unintentionally taking wildlife that is not due to carelessness or negligence - and a hunter who field dresses the animal will be looked at more favorably than one who doesn't. However, anyone who shoots a moose legally or illegally and takes only part of the animal or walks away and leaves the carcass to spoil will be charged.

The first moose to reach Colorado, 12 from Utah, were planted in the North Park region near Walden in 1978. There are now more than 2,000 moose in the state and they can be found just about anywhere. Moose have an uncanny ability to wander where least expected. They have been spotted near Cripple Creek, Salida, Westcliffe, Gunnison, Hayden, Steamboat Springs and Summit County. One was seen near the Eisenhower Tunnel on heavily traveled Interstate 70 and another made its way into downtown Craig.

The Colorado Wildlife Commission began issuing a limited number of moose hunting licenses in 1985. In the first six years, when the number of licenses ranged from three to seven, there were more illegal or accidental kills of moose than the legal harvest. But the number of moose hunting licenses increased substantially in 1992 and the kill ratio has gone up exponentially since then.

This year 156 moose licenses are being issued for the three moose seasons archery Sept. 10-25, muzzleloading Sept. 10-18 and rifle Oct. 1-9.


Hunter education classes slated Aug. 25 and 26

A hunter eduction class, open to anyone wishing to obtain a hunter safety card, will be held Aug. 25-26 in Pagosa Springs.

Classes will be 6-10 p.m. Thursday and 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday in the Colorado Mounted Ranger Building, 302 San Juan St., just east of Seeds of Learning

Students must attend both Thursday and Friday. If you were born on or after Jan. 1, 1949, you are required to have a hunter safety card before you can purchase a hunting license.

There is a $20 fee per student.

The course is cosponsored by Pagosa Springs Police Department in conjunction with the Colorado Division of Wildlife.

All programs, services and activities of the DOW are operated in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. If you need accommodation due to a disability, contact either Justin Krall, Doug Purcell or Mike Reid at 264-2121 or Don Volger at 264-4151, Ext. 239.

To assure DOW can meet your needs, make your notification at last seven days before the class.


Ducks Unlimited banquet slated at Pagosa Lodge

The Pagosa Springs Chapter of Ducks Unlimited will hold their annual banquet and auction Saturday, Oct.1 at the Pagosa Lodge.

The evening will begin with cocktails at 5:30 p.m., followed by dinner at 7:15 p.m., and an auction at 8 p.m.

Ducks Unlimited is a grassroots, volunteer-based organization that conserves, restores and manages wetlands and associated habitats for North America's waterfowl.

Each year, over 100,000 acres of wetland habitat is lost in the United States. Since it's inception, Ducks Unlimited has enhanced and restored over 10 million habitat acres, encompassing over 18,600 wetland projects in the U.S.

These projects provide habitat for over 900 wildlife species, including ducks, geese, and endangered species like the whooping crane and bald eagle.

For ticket information, contact Nolan Fulton at 264-2660, Tracy Bunning at 264-2128, Doug Bryce at 264, 2696, Monica Mayben at 731-1190, or Scott Kay at 264-4539.


Big game hunting outlook for fall 2005

By Tyler Baskfield

Special to The SUN

Despite two record elk harvests in three years - 61,174 in 2002 and 63,336 in 2004 - Colorado still has more elk than any other state or Canadian province.

That is why it is the last state in the union still selling over-the-counter elk licenses and issuing more cow elk tags every year in hopes of more record harvests.

This year the state Wildlife Commission added 4,376 cow and either sex licenses to the 148,246 issued last year, raising the total to 151,622 for the 2005 hunting seasons. But the number of limited licenses for the taking of antlered elk - bull tags which had to be applied for by draw - was reduced by about 5 percent, reflecting hunter success in trimming some herds to manageable proportions.

Even so, after all late season hunting ended in January 2005, the post-hunt elk population was estimated at 275,000, considerably over the Division of Wildlife's (DOW) objective of 189,000.

An additional 50,000 or more spring calves would have Colorado entering the 2005 hunting season with more than 325,000 elk, about a third more than biologists believe the range can support.

Bruce Watkins, who has replaced the now-retired John Ellenberger as the DOW's big game coordinator, notes this winter was not as mild as the winters in preceding years.

"We had some winter mortality - in the Gunnison Basin and Middle Park in particular - but nothing unusually high. I'd say it was a typical winter and our elk are in excellent shape."

He is particularly pleased with a bull-cow ratio of 23 per 100. This breaks down to 13 yearlings or spikes, six two-year-olds with up to four antler points and four adult bulls of five points or better per 100 cows.

"When you have that kind of ratio, you're getting a carryover of mature bulls and increased hunter satisfaction. It shows that our four-point antler restriction has been very successful in producing more branch-antlered bulls for hunters to harvest."

Two new game management units have been added in the San Luis Valley this year, raising the total to 180. Bowhunters can buy unlimited either-sex or cow elk licenses valid in 142 of these units and private land portions of seven others for the entire archery season, which runs Aug. 27 through Sept. 25.

Muzzleloaders can hunt those same units in a shorter season running Sept. 10-18. But their licenses are for bulls or cows only, no either-sex, and they are no longer sold over the counter. Because a cap has been set on the number of muzzleloader licenses issued in Colorado, they are now limited to a drawing.

Also new this year: over-the-counter bull licenses are no longer valid in the fourth rifle season which, like the first, is now limited to a drawing: the first rifle season, for elk only (no deer), runs Oct. 15-19; the fourth, open to both deer and elk hunting, runs Nov. 16-20; over-the-counter bull licenses can only be used in the nine-day second rifle season, Oct. 22-30, or the seven-day third season, Nov. 5-11.

These licenses are good in 93 GMUs and, while overall hunter success on bulls in those units averaged just 19 percent in last year's second season and 21 percent in the third, 24 GMUs enjoyed hunter success rates of 30 to 100 percent. The best second-season units for holders of OTC licenses were 11, 12, 13, 16, 64, 70, 140, 142, 211, 751 and 851. The best third-season units were 3, 5, 11, 12, 13, 42, 60, 65, 72, 75, 131, 140, 141, 301, 411, 441, 691 and 851.

Holders of bull licenses, or those who drew only cow tags, can improve their odds of putting meat in the freezer by buying an additional leftover license. More than 62,000 leftover bull and cow tags were to be sold beginning Tuesday. Extra cow tags are available in 87 GMUs and they are not season-specific, meaning a hunter can go after a bull or cow in one season and hunt an additional cow in another unit and/or season. A third elk can even be had if one acquires an auction or raffle license, a special game damage or population control license or buys an over-the-counter plains elk license good in 52 GMUs.

The state's game managers rely on hunters to keep elk numbers in harmony with the range. But no matter how successful the hunters are Mother Nature needs to do her part.

"Our hunters have been killing more of them, but still not enough," said Watkins. "Colorado will set record harvests for quite a few years, given the right weather conditions. And we certainly have enough elk to allow a continuation of over-the-counter bull licenses for the forseeable future."


If this year is anything like last year, it will be another year of big bucks. Watkins, who grew up in Colorado, says the state is enjoying "the best deer hunting I've ever seen." He credits six years of draw hunting helped by a succession of mild winters. His forecast for this year: "Excellent."

Although there are twice as many deer as elk in Colorado, the state's mule deer herds have been below objectives set by the DOW for more than 20 years. Two disastrous winter kills, chronic wasting disease (CWD), predation by coyotes and mountain lions, the loss of habitat to human development and several years of drought all contributed to a steady decline in the mule deer population, which did not begin rebounding until 1999.

That's when the DOW stopped selling over-the-counter deer licenses and limited them to a draw, which reduced the number of hunters and allowed more mature bucks to survive. The result: a 46 percent hunter success rate in 2004, the highest in 26 years, with 91,646 hunters bagging 41,743 deer. More important to trophy hunters, they killed more bucks in 2004 than in the previous six years and the number of mature bucks with four points or better increased dramatically.

Attesting to their quality, a deer license auctioned by the Colorado Mule Deer Association for this coming season went for $115,000 - the highest price obtained for a deer tag in any western state except Arizona.

This year's post-hunt deer population was estimated at 600,900, still 30,000 or so below the statewide objective but a substantial rebound from the 1997 low of 526,000.

"Our deer wintered well," said Watkins, explaining that even though above-average snowfalls buried the mountains above 8,000 feet, causing some elk winterkill in 2004-2005, little snow fell below 8,000 feet, leaving deer winter range open for most of the winter.

On the Western Slope, which harbors 80 percent of Colorado's mostly mule deer population, numbers have increased, there is good fawn survival - over 80 percent on the Uncompahgre Plateau, for example - and buck-doe ratios are a high 31-33 per 100. "When you start getting ratios like that you're going to see a lot of older bucks, meaning better trophies," said Watkins. "This is not just in a few units but pretty much everywhere west of the Divide."

The biggest increase in deer numbers has been in the northwest region around Meeker and Craig.

"Half the deer in the state are in the northwest," said Watkins. "We're at objective, just where we want to be, in a lot of our units up there."

The deer situation is equally good east of the Divide, particularly in the northeast region. Though it has the highest prevalence of CWD, it also has a higher buck doe ratio, 44-100, than the Western Slope. The only area of concern is in the southeast, west of I-25 and in the San Luis Valley Watkins said the deer there "suffered major declines in the 1990s, we don't really know why, and they haven't recovered. They are still struggling with low fawn-doe ratios and for some reason the fawns aren't surviving."

Simultaneous with this decline, that particular area has seen a tremendous increase in elk numbers. But Watkins said it is still "very difficult to tell how much the two species are competing with each other for habitat. In some areas deer and elk thrive together. In others the elk seem to come out ahead."

Since all deer licenses are now limited by drawing, those who drew already know where and when they'll be hunting. Those who didn't draw can still apply for leftovers, which went on sale together with leftover elk licenses Tuesday. There may not be any leftovers in highly desirable districts but hunters planning for next year should know that there were at least 16 GMUs where hunter success ranged from 70 to 100 percent last year - well above the statewide average of 46 percent.

The top units were 3, 10, 301, 21, 53, 54, 55, 63, 66, 141, 144, 145, 211, 301, 512 and 551. Most of these units are west of the Divide, though three eastern units near the New Mexico border - 141, 144 and 145 - also have high success rates.

Although only 20 percent of the state's deer live east of the Divide, they include both mule deer and whitetails. The DOW does not yet count them separately - or issue separate hunting licenses for the two species in the regular rifle seasons - though Watkins envisions that one day it will. As an experiment, the DOW now issues permits for special late season whitetail-only hunts in units 93, 98 and 101 in the eastern plains, and these may ultimately be expanded to other areas.

Whitetail hunters in those three units had a 38 percent success rate. While the statewide success rate of 46 percent was for both species of deer and all manner of take, rifle hunters did better than that with a 51 percent average in 2004. The breakdown shows they were most successful in the early and late seasons with a 65 percent success rate in both, in the plains season with 55 percent, and in the third combined deer and elk rifle season with 55 percent. Those who hunted in the second rifle season scored 47 percent and in the fourth season 40 percent.

By contrast, bow hunters only filled 19 percent of their deer tags, and muzzleloaders 31 percent.


Colorado's prolonged drought, now over, has been hardest on pronghorns.

"They're the ones that really took it in the shorts," said Watkins. "The good news is that the last bad year was 2003. In 2004 we saw higher fawn-doe ratios and this year we saw good fawn production and survival. There are a few places like near Delta where the herds are still struggling but numbers are increasing on the eastern plains and in the northwest."

Statewide, the pronghorn population is estimated at 60,000, not far below the DOW's objective of 63,200. This is reflected in more pronghorn licenses issued this year - 8,912 compared to 8,124 in 2004. And the pronghorns around Craig and Meeker are back to where they were before the drought. That's because that region has more sage and other shrubs for them to eat, making them less reliant on grass like those on the eastern plains.

The biggest herd in the state, about 16,000 animals, is in northwestern GMUs 3, 301, 13, 4, 5, 441, 214 and 14. But not all of them are among 18 GMUs where hunter success ranges from 80 to 100 percent, compared to a statewide average of 64 percent. These top units are 2, 3, 5, 12, 13, 62, 81, 90, 92, 141, 142, 147, 201, 211, 301, 411, 581 and 691. Be warned, however, that some of them required nine or 10 preference points.


A bear in your yard doesn't mean aggression

Officers with the Colorado Division of Wildlife (DOW) are reminding homeowners that it's especially important at this time of year to take care not to attract bears with garbage or other food sources.

Because black bears in Colorado are eating large amounts of food to prepare for winter hibernation, people might see more bears in the woods or near their homes during the next couple of months.

Patt Dorsey, area wildlife manager for the DOW in Durango, explains that if a bear enters a homeowner's yard it doesn't mean the animal is going to cause problems.

"Just because a bear is near your house doesn't mean it is being aggressive," said Dorsey. "Black bears are not aggressive animals - it is probably just really hungry."

In La Plata County during July, two bears were shot by homeowners who thought the animals were posing a danger. The incidents were investigated by wildlife officers who determined that the homeowners' actions were unnecessary.

While bears eat meat, they are not predators in the same sense that mountain lions are. They are capable predators and occasionally kill livestock and other animals. However, 90 percent of their diet is vegetarian. The 10 percent of their diet that is carnivorous consists usually of insects and carrion.

Black bear attacks on humans are extremely rare and when they do happen, they are usually provoked.

"When a bear is eating it is not cognizant of other things" Dorsey said. "If someone yells at a bear and it doesn't move, it doesn't mean it's being aggressive."

However, once a bear has found a food source, it cannot be scared off easily. In the case of the two bears killed in La Plata County, the bears did not move when homeowners attempted to chase them away.

Starting early this month, bears enter "hyperphagia," a physiological state in which they must eat enormous amounts to prepare their bodies for winter hibernation. Biologists estimate that bears must consume 20,000 calories per day to build their stores of body fat to sustain them through hibernation. The primary food sources are oak brush acorns and choke cherries. This is also the time of year bears will try to find the easiest source of food available.

"If the food is in a backyard, that's where they'll go," Dorsey said.

A bear would need to eat the equivalent of five, five-gallon buckets of choke cherries - or the equivalent of 50 quarter-pound hamburgers - to consume 20,000 calories in a day.

"Bears are looking for high-calorie food. And they can find that in things like dog food, bird seed and human food scraps," Dorsey said. "But if food is not available, they'll go someplace else to find it. And the best place is in the forest."

The DOW offers these tips to help keep bears out of trouble:

- Keep garbage in a well-secured location; and only put out garbage on the morning of pickup. Clean garbage cans with ammonia and water to keep them odor free.

- If you don't have secure storage, put items that might become smelly into the freezer until trash day.

- Don't leave pet food or stock feed outside.

- Hang bird feeders high so bears can't get them; clean up beneath bird feeders.

- Don't compost.

- Allow grills to burn for 10 minutes after cooking to eliminate odors. Clean the grill after each use and store indoors;

- If you have fruit trees, don't allow fruit to rot on the ground.

If you have questions or concerns about bears, please contact the nearest DOW office. You can also read about living in bear country at:


Floating the lower San Juan with our lightweight boats

By John Middendorf

Staff writer

With the San Juan through Pagosa too low for boating, Jeni Wiskofske, my fiancee, and I decided to take a 3-day trip on the lower San Juan, where the river was flowing well at 600 cfs.

Although we had applied for and had been granted a permit for an Aug. 5 put-in (Jeni's birthday), we had failed to read the fine print about activating the permit 30 days in advance. We discovered this Friday morning prior to leaving home, after we had arranged the day off and had packed for the trip.

Jeni saved the day by calling the Monticello BLM office, which manages the section of river from Bluff to Mexican Hat and pleading our predicament. Amazingly, they still had an allotment for two additional people for the weekend, which they granted us.

Excited by the certainty of our big adventure, we arranged and check-listed the final items:

"First Aid Kit,"



"Check" (we had our aluminum turkey pan that we could fold up for this requirement.)

"Poop Tube,"


Because our plan was to go super lightweight, our mandatory toilet system consisted of a 2-foot section of 3-inch diameter PVC tube, with a screw top lid. "No, there's no need to use the tube directly," I explained to Jeni, who had never experienced the system widely used for overnight rock climbing. After doing the business in a paper bag, the bag is then sealed in the plastic lined PVC tube which will be easily disposed after the trip.

Everything we brought was light and compact, including our boats. We had the 4-pound Alpacka rafts, which I had purchased recently on a recommendation from a friend who had used them on some wild adventures. Although we had tested them on Pagosa's San Juan river without any accompanying gear, we were trying them out for our very first overnight river expedition.

After stopping in Monticello to pick up our re-newly granted permit, we shopped for food for a few days, arranged our shuttle at Recapture Lodge in Bluff, and rigged our boats. By Friday at 3 p.m. we launched into the chocolate brown lower San Juan.

The first six miles was a nice float without rapids. We hiked the fantastic "Moki steps," the chiseled steps, carved by the ancient Hisatsinom, up vertical cliffs which led to a clear freshwater pool suspended in the cliffs above the river, and visited the River House, one of the largest ancient structures in the canyon. The route along the river was once a major trading route, part of the connection between Canyon De Chelly with the Grand Gulch area. Along the river upstream from Chinle Creek there are major remains of thousand-year-ago settlements, and many petroglyphs and the occasional hematite pictograph.

We camped on a little sand island downstream from River House. Our first night brought a little rain, so we pulled out our floorless single pole "Megamid" tent which kept us faily dry, even though the shallow sand couldn't take our tent poles and the biggest rocks on the island we could find to anchor our shelter were only the size of small grapefruits. Luckily there was no wind that night.

Saturday was rapid day. After passing Chinle Creek, we entered the anticline canyons where "two-foot", "four-foot," and "eight-foot" rapids occur in a 7-mile stretch. Between rapids we would lazily float down, enjoying the wildlife. Large Blue Herons, standing three or four feet high, would stand motionless as we approached, then take flight with their deep bassoon wingbeats upriver past us. Families of big horn sheep took no notice of us as they foraged the riparian banks as we quietly floated by. Turkey Vultures soared the skys in slow circles, catching thermals rising up the canyons walls.

The previous night's rain had brought a rich sediment load from Chinle Creek, and the river turned bright orange red, and the water was almost thick enough to hold in your hand. We passed other families, with kids playing in the mud, inspiring us to do the same and we called repeated "truce" and "un-truce" as we splattered each other with the fine silten colorful mud.

Everyone we passed asked us about our boats, not quite believing we had a river-worthy craft loaded with our 40 pound waterproof bags. Nobody had seen white-water boats as small and compact. Although we had some trepidation about our small boats ourselves, after we cruised through Eight-Foot Rapid, we were almost disappointed that the rapids didn't challenge our skills more severely, and we realized how incredibly stable our self-support boats really were. As we got bolder, we tried intentionally to tip them over in smaller rapids, but couldn't.

Our final night we camped right below Ledges Rapid, where we had the beach to ourselves. We swam across the river and climbed on the ledges on the other side, discovering a tarantula standing incredibly still in the sand. It took us some time to discover that the reason it was so still was that it was dead; it had been killed by a 'tarantula hawk' (a nasty wasp which lays her eggs inside a tarantula which continues to live until the baby tarantula hawks are born and eat their way out).

After another blessed night under the stars, we floated out the remaining 8 or so miles, passing Mexican Hat rock along the way. When we got to the take-out with our lightweight boats, the de-rig took all of 5 minutes. Another group who had rowed passed us with their traditional gear an hour before were still shuttling metal frames, coolers, and ammo boxes from their 17-foot raft. Soon we were searching for milkshakes in Bluff and recollecting our favorite moments of the trip.


For obtaining a permit for the lower San Juan (which rose this week to 2000cfs), call the Monticello Field Office of the BLM at 435-587-1544.

For more information on the unique Alpacka Rafts, which are perfect for lightweight trips, fishing, hunting, and canyoneering, see

For information on building a lightweight backcounty toilet system, see


High Country Reflections

Two incredible rods, two unbelievable gifts

By Chuck McGuire

As I peered through the front window on a bluebird summer day, there was still no sign of my friend, Joe Arguello. Only the golden rays of a mid-morning sun, filtering through the shimmering jade-colored cottonwood leaves above, flooded the otherwise empty gravel driveway beyond. It was nearing 10 a.m., and Joe was due any minute. We planned to fish the upper Colorado near my Kremmling home for a couple of days, but more than that, he was bringing a very special, and eagerly-anticipated, gift. It was delivery day.

Eventually, and essentially right on time, Joe wheeled into the drive after roughly two hours on the road. I walked out to greet him, and following the customary salutation, he pulled a long slender tube from behind the seat of his pickup and handed it to me.

"There it is," he said, and without delay, I unscrewed the brass cap from one end of the flat-black container. Inside, I saw a green cloth bag with some nickel-silver hardware glaring at me. "Go ahead," Joe prodded, so I tilted the open end of the tube downward and pulled the cloth sock and its contents free. Immediately, I caught a whiff of fresh marine spar varnish as I slid the largest of three sections from the bag. It was the butt-section of a beautifully hand-crafted two-piece, two-tip, bamboo flyrod.

As a gesture of appreciation for some articles I'd written, Joe built my dream rod to exact specifications. At 7 feet 9 inches long, its design is based on an Everett Garrison taper, and it almost effortlessly throws a double-taper five-weight line. It is something I had only dreamed of having, but never fully expected to own. As Joe handed it to me, he said, "This rod is yours under one condition. You can't just hang it over the fireplace, you have to fish it."

Typical of the Garrison technique, every bamboo spline in the rod is split from the same culm of Tonkin cane, and each is tapered by hand on a custom-designed planing form. The sliding-band reel seat, ferrules, cork check, and winding check are machined from nickel silver, and the English-style line guides are hand-twisted from piano wire and heat-treated for hardness. The hand-crafted agate stripping guide includes a nickel-silver frame and bezel, with a cut and polished agate insert. The hardwood reel spacer is mortised, and the cork grip is a classic "half-wells" shape. The colorful silk wraps are mottled black and olive, with black accent wraps at each end.

While the rod design and quality are true to those built by the old master, its exquisite appearance and core power make it the quintessential Rocky Mountain dry-fly rod. As a talented craftsman, Joe has built such rods, and a variety of other sizes and models, since 1992, and to date, is the only rod maker I'm aware of who hand-builds every rod component per customer request.

Eight years have now passed since Joe so generously expressed his gratitude, yet I remember as if it was just last week. Within an hour of his arrival that day, we were standing in the Colorado River near Parshall, casting dry flies to rising trout. I recall the beautiful weather and catching a few nice browns from the far bank, but most of all, I remember the sheer joy of casting and getting the feel of my new rod. My only difficulty came in constantly having to resist the urge to stare at it, rather than fish it.

I was a full-time fishing guide back then, and within a few weeks of Joe's visit and kind gesture, I got a call from another dear friend and good client, Bobby Cox. Bobby was an avid flyfisherman and successful lawyer from Tennessee at the time, but owned a lavish townhome in Beaver Creek. He visited often throughout the year, and always called to arrange several outings. Whenever he brought friends or family along, I guided them on the waters of Bobby's choosing, but when he came alone, we'd either float the Colorado or wade-fish any of innumerable rivers or streams.

During this particular conversation, I could hear in Bobby's voice that his longstanding battle with cancer had begun taking its toll. I asked about it, but he assured me that, while recently suffering a minor setback, he'd be fine in a couple of weeks. That was Bobby's style, as he promptly suggested we join in Wolcott some day soon, and squeeze in an afternoon of fishing on the Eagle. I agreed, and after setting the date and time, I told him about Joe and the beautiful rod he'd given me.

In the morning of the autumn day Bobby and I planned to meet, he called and apologetically explained that other commitments probably wouldn't allow adequate time to fish, but that he'd still like to rendezvous and at least have lunch. Again I agreed, and later we met at a roadside burger stand in Wolcott.

Once there, we quickly embraced in friendship, ordered a charbroiled meal, and quietly sat down to catch up on things. Under the warm afternoon sun, we slowly dined and casually talked of family and friends, but I could see that Bobby's health had waned in recent months. Of course, as I again inquired, he at once proclaimed his growing strength and continued wellbeing, then directly changed the subject to topics involving the outdoors. At one point, almost as an afterthought, he asked how I was enjoying my new bamboo rod.

As dialogue ran its course and time ran short, Bobby suddenly exclaimed, "Oh, I have something for you." I followed as he motioned me toward his Jeep, and from the back compartment he pulled out a long silver-colored tube, again with brass caps on either end.

"Here, I thought you might like to have this," he said, as he handed it to me.

Instantly, I feared he may be giving up on his battle with that awful disease, and asked,""You're not givin' in and giving away your fishin' stuff, are you?"

"Oh no," he said. "I'll be around a long time yet, and we'll get plenty of good fishin' in. This is just somethin' I've had a long time, and since I don't use it, I thought maybe you should."

Ironically, as I opened the tube and slid out its contents, Bobby looked at me and said, "I want you to have this, but under one condition you gotta fish it."

The tube was obviously used, and I was certain he'd just handed me one of his favorite graphite rods, but as I pulled the butt-section from the canvas rod sock, I immediately noticed the blond bamboo shaft and bright red wraps. The inscription on the nickel-silver reel seat read, "H.L. Leonard Rod Co.-Makers."

I was speechless. Bobby had just given me a classic cane rod built by a company established by Hiram Leonard sometime back in the late 1870s. One of the truly great master rod builders, Leonard has often been referred to as "the father of the bamboo rod," and many of his former employees went on to become famous rod builders in their own right.

What could I say? I hugged Bobby again and tried expressing my disbelief, but he simply shrugged it off and said, "I've gotta run, but I'll call you soon, and we'll go fishin' before the snow flies."

Unfortunately, Bobby's health continued to deteriorate, and while we spoke by phone occasionally, we never saw each other again. So today, when fishing smaller streams, I break out my 7 1/2-foot, four-weight Leonard, whisper reverently to Bobby, and quietly dedicate the first fish to him.

Come to think of it, whenever I fish my 7-foot 9-inch, five-weight J.E. Arguello rod, I also give thanks and dedicate my first catch to Joe.




Proper action

Dear Editor:

The town board is to be commended for voting down the big box ordinance as currently written. They had the backbone to vote how their constituents feel.

Most of the big box task force and most of the people who spoke for it at the various hearings were not residents of the town. The townspeople do not like nonresidents or persons with axes to grind telling them what to do.

The task force was made up exclusively of business people plus one town board member and one county commissioner. There were no plain, ordinary residents of the town on it — folks who have to watch their pennies trying to provide for their families — who should have been a majority of the task force.

Again, town board, you did the proper thing for what you had to consider. Good for you!

Fred A. Ebeling


Double cross?

Dear Editor:

Was there a double cross? I guess not, just the way things happen in politics. But what a farce!

A "Three Ring Circus" is exactly what it was when the vote was taken to not accept the resolution presented concerning size limitations when the big boxes move into the county. They aren't wanted by the townspeople.

I would like to know what council members Cotton, Whitbred and James are going to do when big boxes come in with no size restrictions and our wonderful "ma and pa" businesses fold up and close one by one — maybe even before big boxes come in, as happened in Durango.

Then the mistake will be recognized, but too late.

What a way to conduct a meeting. Who made the decision not to allow public comment at the first reading, saying they would be allowed at the second reading. Someone knew full well there would not be a second.

And what a slam in the face to Cappy White who, out of frustration, attempted to ask a couple of "unanswered" questions.

Thank you to members Holt and especially Tony Simmons for having the foresight to see the forest and the trees. Tony, we would acknowledge your passion by applauding any level.

Is it possible for us to know the names of the constituents who contacted you three and wanted these voted down. Rather than being forced to believe they are out there, your credibility took a hard knock at this meeting.

Cindy Gustafson


Make difference

Dear Editor:

On August 6 and 9 we commemorated the 60th anniversary of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Although those bombings hastened the end of WWII it has not led to a more peaceful or nuclear free world. In the last 60 years there have been wars in Korea, Vietnam, Central and South America, Africa, Asia and the Middle East.

Global terrorism and genocide such as we saw in Rwanda and now in Darfur are raising the level of chaos in the world. Things could be a lot worse if not for many good people seeking peace and justice and the welfare of their brothers and sisters in the local and global community.

It is my suggestion the best way we can honor those lost in war and especially the women and children and civilians lost at Hiroshima and Nagasaki is to redouble our efforts to make the world more humane and more just. Our efforts may be right here in southwest Colorado by supporting good causes like Habitat for Humanity or a domestic violence prevention program. It might be for better government through amendments C and D in the up coming election.

We might bring it to a national or global level to be more aware of the need for economic justice under CAFTA or for energy conservation so that some petroleum is left for our children and grand children. Donations to CARE or UNICEF could help the starving in Niger's drought right now.

Making our world a better place is a difficult but worthwhile goal. Maybe this 60th anniversary of Hiroshima and Nagasaki is a good time to redouble our commitment to peace and justice for all people. Individually and together we can make a difference.

Raymond P. Finney


Save me!

Dear Editor:

My name is Nissan Sentra. I was born in 1991 and that makes me 14 years old. I have 52,000 miles on me and I'm sort of tired.

When I go over those potholes on Piñon Causeway, I get such a bellyache; my tires hurt because they go in the holes.

I have lost my shiny paint but I still work well. I hope to live a few more years with my owner.

Please fix Piñon Causeway and make me feel better. I'm fighting to stay in one piece.

Brenda McCooey

Quick response

Dear Editor:

Unfortunately we had to call the Archuleta Sheriff's animal control the other night about 8 p.m. A large dog with a shock collar was running loose and attacking the neighbors' small dogs.

After calling 911 I was actually amazed at the repsonse time — less than seven minutes. Officer Brian Hagenbuch was very professional and took control of the animal putting him in the back of his vehicle, and getting any pertinent information, asking if any animals had been harmed and said he was gong to return the animal to its owner.

He was very courteous and professional in his duties. Kudos to the Sheriffs Dept.

Tom and Roxie Joy


Magic's gone

Dear Editor:

We discovered Pagosa Springs the summer of 1993 when we parked at the windy, Wolf Creek overlook to drink in that awesome view to the west. We couldn't stop then, on our way home to Phoenix, but driving past all the charming buildings on Pagosa Street, my husband said, "We should come here on vacation sometime."

With raising five children, we rarely had money for extras. As our nest emptied, a new era began: summer vacations for two! July Fourth 1994 found us in Pagosa. We delighted in lunch on the veranda at Amoré (used to be in the little house where European Café is now up for sale). We loved the cozy, fresh breakfasts at "The Rolling Pin" (now "Frankie's Place," serving scrumptious, fresh, Italian salads, pastas, and pizzas). We savored massages and a soothing soak in the hot springs!

We hadn't watched a July 4th parade in years but didn't want to miss yours — or the rodeo or the arts and crafts fair. We loved every minute! And, you probably know what we felt pervading that day: the bond of family. As I watched that wonderful parade and heard conversations around me, I thought "EVERYONE comes home to Pagosa!"

By the next summer, I had a new job and no vacation time. We wanted so badly to return for July 4th, we drove the 500 miles just for the weekend. The brief respite in Pagosa was just what I needed.

Each year we have returned, either in summer or for the terrific Four Corners Folk Festival. Our daughters and their families vacationed there with us after 9/11. We've tented or stayed in cabins, motels, or a bed and breakfast. We've gone to the movies, bought jewelry, T-shirts, hiking boots, my Native American wooden flute, fishing flies, gifts, drug store sundries, groceries and postcards; we visit the laundromat and carwash every year. We eat out once a day. We ate supper one last time at Amoré, as family members worked to maintain the restaurant during the owner's serious illness. We watch for changes and note with regret when "our" favorite spots disappear from Pagosa Street.

Last year, we sensed keenly that the "magic" was gone. This summer, the town looked even more forlorn, with so many "This Business for Sale" signs and bare ground where old houses had long stood.

We read the Sun's July 14 edition (money for 8,100-ft. runway but not for paving gravel roads, "first Comp Plan meeting," "vast new shopping areas"), and we heard "things will be better." Honestly?

Phoenix is filled with the hustle of traffic, noise, pollution and vast new shopping areas. Pagosa, especially with places like "Victoria's Parlor," has been a retreat away from all that.

At the Comp Plan meetings, I urge you to preserve your history. Please choose what will save your haven of warmth, old-fashioned charm, and family values. Please don't let the "developers" decide.

Sharon Moore,



Total disrespect

Dear Editor:

I attended both the commissioners' and Town Board meetings Aug. 6. the one thing I found most offensive was the total disrepect both boards showed for the attendees.

There was some misunderstanding regarding the commissioners hearing public comment on the big box issue. Instead of showing some respect for their constituents and setting aside, let's say, 20 minutes of their time to hear comments, they refused to do so.

Then, after Mr. Simmons' opinion was voiced, drawing applause by the audience, Mayor Aragon found it more appropriate to act in dictatorial manner as opposed to setting some guidelines for conducting the meeting and allowing the attendees, many of them business owners, to have "x" amount of time to express their opinions.

What could it hurt?

It would have allayed the situation. Mayor Aragon said in the second reading, the public would be able to comment, but later the board defeated the ordinance without any more readings.

He (the mayor) violated any type of parliamentary procedure which he appeared to be attempting to follow. What are the commissioners and the Town Board afraid of?

You know, a few years ago a group of people got mad because of this type of treatment, so I will not coin their phrase, "taxation without representation" but, does it sound familiar?

The business owners may not live in town, but they own buildings in town and contribute substantially to the tax base and having just one person on the board is not representation, but tokenism.

There has to be a better way than what I witnessed, because this is just the beginning of a lot of important decisions that we as a community, not just the town and not just the county, will have to make in the very near future.

One question: If the town is now a home rule community, doesn't it have the authority to amend its charter to have non-resident business owners on the Town Board, thus making a more equitable representation of the people contributing to the tax base?

Barbara Parada


On holiday

Dear Editor:

Henry Buslepp's Aug. 4 letter to the SUN got me to wondering. Why am I not surprised that a liberal thinks stupidity is logic?

Point to ponder: It is only the warlike power of a civilized people that can give peace to the world.

Somehow, I don't think I'd like to count on the French government to pursue world peace; most of them are usually on holiday.

Jim Sawicki


Community News

Pagosa bassoonist calls music universal language

By Paul Roberts

Special to The PREVIEW

"I really believe music is the universal language," said Valley Lowrance. "It doesn't need to have words to bring joy and pleasure to people, it's a language all by itself."

Lowrance will re-create music from the ancient world when she plays her bassoon at the American Roots Music Festival, 6 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 28, at Pagosa Lakes Clubhouse.

The program, entitled "From the Old World to the New," also features violinist Chris Baum and multi-instrumentalists Paul and Carla Roberts.

"Music is something you can take with you all your life," said Lowrance. "The things I enjoy most have to do with music. I can't even imagine the world without music."

Lowrance grew up in a very musical family. She recalls, "Music and harmonizing were always important in my family. I was the youngest of 10 children and we all sang and played instruments."

She began playing piano at an early age. "It was a player piano that my mother had converted to a regular piano so the kids could play it. It had a nice, soft touch. There were so many kids that we never got a chance to play individually, so one of us would play the top hand and another would play the bottom hand.

"We had really strong music programs in the little town I came from in Montana. There were very good band and voice teachers in the elementary, junior high and high schools.

"In the third grade I wanted to play the trombone, but I was too little, so I started on the clarinet. I had two older sisters who played the bassoon, so when I came along I just thought I was supposed to play the bassoon, too."

In high school, Lowrance switched from clarinet to bassoon.

After graduating, she continued her devotion to the piano but set down the bassoon, until she and her husband, Ed Lowrance, moved to Pagosa a few years ago.

After coming to Pagosa, Lowrance was inspired to play bassoon again, after over 30 years.

"I think it's because of the strong training I had when I was younger that made me feel I could take it up in my retirement years, and do it again," she said.

Lucky for Pagosa; it's a real cultural asset to have a member of our community, who plays so beautifully on this rare and wonderful instrument.

The rich sonic timbres produced by the bassoon give a player enormous possibilities for musical exploration and expression. It is a low-pitched, double reed wind instrument that has a captivating and pleasing tone. The modern bassoon has more keys on it than any other woodwind instrument, making it very difficult to play. It is used primarily as an orchestral instrument.

The bassoon is the descendent of an ancient wind instrument often seen in the hands of angels, in early paintings. In Western music its history goes back to the shawman of medieval and renaissance times. In Eastern music, related instruments go back at least several thousand of years.

Lowrance's bassoon is made of ringed maple, and it dates back to the 1940's. "I was lucky enough to find one of the good, old ones that has a pretty tone," she said.

Some of her musical activities in Pagosa include playing with a chamber group, singing in the community choir and playing with the new community band. Besides bassoon and piano, she also plays alto recorder and hammer dulcimer.

About playing music from ancient cultures, which she will be performing at the Roots fest, Lowrance said, "This is a very different experience for me, much less structured than classical music. It gives me a chance to improvise, which I really enjoy."

Lowrance said her goals are to continue developing her musical abilities and to enjoy her retirement, playing music in Pagosa. She said, "I hope so much that musical opportunities can continue to grow in this town. It's such a wonderful tool."

For an evening of variety and musical intrigue, come to the concert performance of "From the Old World to the New," the next episode of American Roots Music Festival, with Valley Lowrance on bassoon; Chris Baum on violin; and Paul and Carla Roberts, with their rare collection of instruments from around the world.

American Roots Music Festival takes place at Pagosa Lakes Clubhouse, 230 Port Avenue in the Vista subdivision of Pagosa Lakes. Take 160 to Vista Blvd. Turn north on Vista and left on Port.

Tickets are $8 for adults, $7 for seniors, and $12 for families. Children are admitted free of charge. Tickets will be available at the door. If you would like to bring a dessert to share, it would be appreciated.

American Roots Music Festival is produced by Elation Center for the Arts.

For further information, call 731-3117.


Ruthie Foster returns to Fest by popular demand

By Crista Munro

Special to The PREVIEW

Music with soul -- the Four Corners Folk Festival oozes with it - but perhaps the most soulful musician to ever grace the stage atop Reservoir Hill is Ruthie Foster, who will be back by overwhelming demand for her second appearance at this year's event.

Ruthie's songs are a remarkable hybrid of blues, gospel, roots and folk music rich with honest spirituality and emotion. Her simply amazing vocal abilities have critics comparing her to Ella Fitzgerald and Aretha Franklin. Ruthie's passionate songs and scintillating live performances attract both the young and old for an uplifting experience of dancing, listening, laughing and even some crying; especially when Ruthie rounds out the joyous occasion with her versions of show-stopping gospel standards.

Ruthie's performance highlights include PBS-syndicated Austin City Limits; a 2004 tour of UK theaters with Eric Bibb; The Strawberry Music Festival in California, the Vancouver Folk Festival, the Willie Nelson Picnic, the Winnipeg Folk Festival, Folks Fest in Lyons, Colo., Bass Concert Hall, the Waterfront Blues Festival in Oregon, the Tonder Festival in Denmark, the Philadelphia Folk Festival, the Austin City Limits Festival, and, of course, the Four Corners Folk Festival where she made her debut in 2003.

Dynamic singer and soulful iconoclast in his own right, seasoned performer John Cowan was deeply moved and impressed when he heard Ruthie sing for the first time ever at the festival that year. It was a highlight of the show when the two then shared the stage and the festival audience has been requesting Ruthie back ever since.

While on tour, Ruthie's band sells an average of 100 CDs a night. "We spend a lot of time chasing down the Fed Ex truck while on tour trying to get our merchandise. It's a good problem to have," laughs the good natured Ruthie.

While touring the Canadian Folk Festival circuit in the summer of 2002, Ruthie sold 1,000 CDs in one day, breaking a long-time record held by Ani DiFranco.

Raised in Gause, Texas, a small town 180 miles southeast of Dallas, Ruthie grew up surrounded by the rich, soulful sounds of gospel and blues. Her outstanding voice and superb original music come from many influences including Sam Cooke, Mahalia Jackson, Sister Rosetta Thorpe, Sarah Vaughn, Etta James, and Lightnin' Hopkins, although perhaps no one has influenced Ruthie like her mother, Shirley Jones, who urged her to "Open your mouth and sing, girl!"

Foster's musical journey has taken her from McClennan Community College in Waco, Texas and a degree in commercial music to a four-year tour with the U. S. Navy Band, Pride, to New York City and a contract with Atlantic Records. During her stay in New York, Ruthie appeared at many of the top venues in town opening and performing with artists such as Josh White, Jr., Matt "Guitar" Murphy, the Fabulous Thunderbirds, and Paul Schaffer.

Ruthie Foster will perform 5 p.m. Saturday, Sept.3 on the main stage at the Four Corners Folk Festival. Vocal enthusiasts will also want to catch Ruthie and Mollie O'Brien at their joint vocal workshop 1 p.m. Saturday.

Newcomers to the Four Corners Folk Festival, Crooked Still, redefines traditional music. With the unusual instrumentation of cello, banjo, bass, and voice, this neo-bluegrass outfit shatters preconceptions without sacrificing authenticity. Their unique combination of driving, earthy grooves and soaring, heavenly vocals has led the Boston Globe to call Crooked Still "the most important folk group to emerge from Boston since the early '60's."

Drawing from bluegrass, old-time and contemporary folk traditions, Aoife O'Donovan (vocals), Rushad Eggleston (cello), Greg Liszt (banjo), and Corey DiMario (double-bass) put out a low lonesome sound that is simultaneously virtuosic and heartfelt.

Aoife O'Donovan has been dubbed the "voice of the new tradition" by Performer magazine. Merging American, Irish, klezmer and jazz styles, Aoife's angelic voice brings mature expressivity to traditional songs. In addition to Crooked Still, Aoife is a member of the group The Wayfaring Strangers and is featured on their latest release, This Train (Rounder). She has also performed with Seamus Egan, Winifred Horan, and Darol Anger. In 2003, Aoife graduated from the New England Conservatory.

Rushad Eggleston is a master of improvisation; his keen, inventive skill at adapting driving fiddle styles for the cello is nothing short of revolutionary. He performs regularly with the Grammy-nominated Fiddlers 4 as well as Darol Anger's Republic of Strings. Rushad also leads his Wild Band of Snee, performing songs and instrumentals that are truly out of this world. Moreover, Rushad was the first string student admitted to the prestigious Berklee College of Music on a full scholarship.

Gregory Liszt's futuristic banjo style incorporates a novel four-fingered picking technique that turns the banjo into a funky rhythm instrument as well as a smooth soloing tool. Greg is currently working on his Ph. D. in Biology at MIT, where he researches the molecular and cellular basis of aging. Greg also performs with the Wayfaring Strangers and the Jake Armerding Band, and he has been featured in Banjo Newsletter as well as MIT's Technology Review. He has recently attained notoriety for his unique style of banjo rapping.

Double-bassist Corey DiMario provides rock solid, driving low-end accompaniment. He has performed at jazz and folk venues across the eastern seaboard, including the Kennedy Center, the Knitting Factory and Symphony Hall. He has recorded with Laura Cortese and Hanneke Cassel and is a member of the Lissa Schneckenburger Band. Additionally, he has performed with Liz Carroll, John Whelan, Russ Barenburg, and the Wayfaring Strangers.

Crooked Still will perform 5:45 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 2 and 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 3 on the main 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.

Children 12 and under are admitted free at the event, and a free children's program provides a variety of activities and entertainment throughout the weekend. The merchant expo at the festival contains a wonderful variety of clothing, jewelry, instruments and handmade goods, and the festival food court offers delicious fare to suit any palate. A beer and wine garden is also on site.

Tickets to the 10th Annual Four Corners Folk Festival, to be held September 2-4 on Reservoir Hill, are available at Southwest Sound in Durango and Moonlight Books or Wolftracks Coffee and Books in Pagosa Springs. Additional information and tickets are also available online at or by calling 877-472-4672.


Thrill of school often dulled by lack of tools

By Liz Wantusiak

Department of Human Services

Imagine the first day of school ...

It's a beautiful, sunny morning and you're out in the schoolyard running and playing. You get to see friends, some of whom you haven't seen all summer. You want to meet your new teacher. You hear she's really nice.

The bell rings..., time to head to home room. You get a lump in your throat, a knot in your stomach. Your parents are having another tough year. They just weren't able to buy all the supplies that you need for school. You know your friends will share. But still, you wish you had your own pencils and folders and markers ...

This is what the first day of school could look like for some Pagosa students.

As the Life Skills Worker at the Department of Human Services I've seen firsthand the struggle some families face. They save up a little each month, as they can, barring any unforeseen situations. Yet, many times it's not enough to get all the kids the supplies they need. The bookbags themselves can be quite expensive.

However, a local group is trying to change the above scenario.

Operation Helping Hand, a group of dedicated citizens, has been assisting those in need for more than fifteen years now. They are currently in the process of collecting donations of school supplies for area children. You can help OHH make someone's first day of school (and in fact the entire school year) a brighter one by contributing some supplies.

Below is a list of items being collected by Operation Helping Hand. It was compiled using supply lists provided by local schools. You can drop off your donations at the Pagosa SUN or Jackisch Drug Store, both located on Pagosa Street. Please consider the excitement and happiness you could bring to a child on the first day of school!


No. 2 pencils

8-count crayons

16-count crayons

24-count crayons

4 oz. bottles of glue

Small pointed scissors

12-count colored pencils

24-count colored pencils

Family-size box of Kleenex

Gallon-size zip lock bags

Quart-size zip lock bags

Supply box

Fiskars scissors

8-count markers

Large pink erasers

One-inch hard cover 3-ring binder

Pencil top erasers

Glue sticks

Loose leaf wide rule notebook paper

Loose leaf college rule notebook paper

Scientific calculator

Pencil pouch


7-subject dividers

Spiral notebooks

White out

Ruler with standard and metric scale

Erasable pens

Index cards

8-count classic, watercolor markers

Pocket portfolios, pockets on bottom

Red lead pencils

40-page spiral notebooks

Thin-tipped markers


Four dry erase markers

Basic calculator

Pad lock or combination lock

No. 3 pencils

Small pencil sharpener with shavings holder

Wide rule composition notebooks

Elmer's glue

Paper towels

Large scissors

Clear ruler with standard and metric scale

Medium size pencil box

Graph spiral notebooks

Pocket folders with brads

Small dixie cups

Small, rounded scissors

Those who wish to make monetary donations to the drive may send them to Operation Helping Hand, Wells Fargo Bank, account number 6240417424, or Bank of the San Juans, account number 20014379.


Children's Chorale adds new youth chorale unit; sets auditions, rehearsals

By Anna Harbison

Special to The PREVIEW

The Pagosa Springs Children's Chorale announces the opening of its third year and the debut of a new youth choir.

Our directors provide our singers with more than 50 years combined classroom experience in music education. The Children's Chorale, under the direction of Rada Neal, will include boys and girls, 7-12 years of age, and the new Youth Chorale, under the direction of Sue Anderson, will initially be open only to girls, 12-16 years of age.

Rehearsals/auditions: Both choirs will hold weekly, concurrent rehearsals for the upcoming Christmas season beginning 3-5 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 7, at the Community United Methodist Church on Lewis Street.

Private auditions are required for membership in both choirs and will be held Saturday, Aug. 20, at the Methodist Church. Morning and afternoon appointments with the directors are available. Prospective singers are encouraged to call 264-0244 to schedule your time slot. Current members are not required to audition but are asked to call if they wish to sing in either chorale this fall.

Performance venues: In addition to our spring and Christmas concerts, we will again perform in March 2006 at "Imagination Celebration" in Colorado Springs in a choir of 200 young voices from all across Colorado. Our recent local venues have included Pine Ridge Care Center, Music in the Mountains Family Festivo and the Archuleta County Fair. Many new outings are being planned for our singers throughout this concert season.

Fees: Minimal, refundable material fees, and a small monthly fee per singer is expected. Family discounts, private study discounts, and scholarships are also available for those who qualify.


Music in the Mountains sets attendance records

By Carole Howard

Special to The PREVIEW

As Pagosa's fourth Music in the Mountains season came to an end this week, audiences, organizers and musicians alike agreed it was the most successful local classical music festival ever to take place in our town. It also was the largest, with six events taking place.

Highlights included the first-ever performance in Pagosa of the full festival orchestra and a new, much larger tent seating 350 for the performances.

Opening event for this season was an elegant benefit with a reception and piano concert hosted by David and Carol Brown at BootJack Ranch in their fabulous glass-roofed Aquatic Center on June 25. Funds raised help support classical concerts as well as children's scholarships and musical events in Pagosa Springs.

Concerts at Ranch

Next came three extraordinary concerts under the tent at BootJack Ranch, each featuring world-class artists who have made their names performing and recording in venues all over the world.

The event July 22 featured internationally famous violinist Vadim Gluzman, as well as a group of eight string musicians and a trio on the oboe, horn and piano. On July 30 pianist Aviram Reichert performed with the full festival orchestra. On August 5 Antonio Pompa-Baldi brought his piano mastery back to Pagosa. He was joined by a trio on the violin, viola and cello.

Music in the Mountains provided free tickets to the concerts to some of Pagosa's top music students as recommended by the school's music department so that they were able to experience these special occasions first-hand.

Meanwhile, in response to popular demand after last summer's successful event, Music in the Mountains hosted a free outdoor community concert at Town Park July 28. About 600 "kids of all ages" and their families enjoyed a performance of "Peter and the Wolf," featuring local children in all the roles, backed by members of the festival orchestra.

An unexpected encore took place August 8 when David and Carol Brown joined Stanley and Elaine Levine in hosting several hundred Music in the Mountains supporters including major donors, volunteers, advertisers and others who have assisted the festival here in Pagosa. The special thank-you event included a concert featuring a Spanish guitarist and two pianists as well as a post-concert reception.

"This has been an extraordinary season with sell-out crowds at every concert," said Jan Clinkenbeard, chairman of the committee organizing these local events. "It's obvious that Pagosa music enthusiasts recognize how lucky we are to have first-class musicians who have performed to rave reviews around the world come here to play for us. Thanks to the Browns, we enjoyed this music in a spectacular mountain setting at the foot of Wolf Creek Pass."

Looking to 2006

Clinkenbeard said planning already is underway for next year's season by her local volunteer steering committee composed of Melinda Baum, Mary Jo Coulehan, Lauri Heraty, Carole Howard, Crystal Howe, Teresa Huft and Lisa Scott. "We know we have an incredible act to follow after this season," she said with a laugh, "and we are determined to meet that challenge."

She pointed out that ticket prices pay for only a small portion of the cost of the concerts. "That is why our benefit fund-raiser and the contributions we receive from individual donors, businesses and other larger organizations are so crucial to our Pagosa festival," she said.

"We're especially grateful to our major sponsors, including BootJack Ranch, Parelli Natural Horse-Man-Ship, Coleman Vision, Avjet Corporation, Bob Hart - Hart Construction and Hart's Rocky Mountain Retreat, Bank of the San Juans, The Source for Pagosa Real Estate, the Town of Pagosa Springs, LPEA, Wells Fargo Bank and the Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs."

Save as reminder

Clinkenbeard suggested part-time residents and out-of-town visitors to Pagosa who were unable to purchases tickets to this summer's concerts before they sold out save this article as a reminder for next year. Tickets for next season's concerts go on sale April 1.

If you are unable to visit the Pagosa Springs Chamber of Commerce to purchase tickets, you can call the Chamber at 800-252-2204 or 970-264-2360. Tickets also are available on line at or at Music in the Mountains

To get advance notice of Pagosa concerts and other Music in the Mountains events, call 970-385-6820 in Durango and specify that you want to be on the Pagosa Springs mailing list. Next year's concert dates will be announced in the November newsletter.


Auction for the Animals is slated Friday, Aug. 26

By Cristina Woodall

Special to THE PREVIEW

Mark your calendars for the 11th Annual Humane Society of Pagosa Springs Auction for the Animals.

The festivities begin 5:30 p.m. Friday, August 26 in the Pagosa Springs Community Center. This is the premier fundraiser for the homeless dogs and cats of Archuleta County. Come share in the fun.

Advance tickets are available at Wolftracks Bookstore and Café, Pagosa Springs Chamber of Commerce, Moonlight Books and our Humane Society Thrift Store. Ticket prices for this extravaganza will be $25 in advance or $30 at the door for wine and beer, including a commemorative wine glass or beer stein. Tickets without wine and beer tasting will be $15 in advance or $20 at the door.

Items large and small will be available for you to bid on. From first-edition, signed books, such as "Islands", by Anne Rivers Siddons, to a complete camping set with fireplace grill, portable table set for four, wheeled cooler, deck chairs, and two-person inflatable boat.

A gorgeous, handcrafted necklace has been custom designed and created for the Auction by Summer Phillips, Goldsmith, as she has done in past years. The elegant setting offers a 3.02ct cushion-cut peridot accented by a 0.21ct VS diamond. The 14K gold pendant is on a shimmering 18" 14K snake chain. You must come and see this incredible one-of-a-kind beauty.

For all you fly fishermen and women, check out the Orvis Superfine Tight Loop Rod, a four-piece rod perfect for traveling to demanding trout waters. It packs to 26". The rod is combined with the Orvis CFO II Reel for line weights 2-4. This rod would be great for both the experienced and the novice angler.

Thank you to all the local businesses and supporters who have donated items and services to auction off. Cute teddy bears, fine paintings and offers for services are coming in daily. The collection is amazing. Thank you also to the donors who have given financial help. It is greatly appreciated!

It's not too late to bring in other donations. To offer your donation, contact the Humane Society Administration Office located above the Humane Society Thrift Store or call at 970-264-5549. Bringing your item by in the next few days helps in getting your name listed in the Auction program.

Thank you to all of you who so kindly support the Humane Society. Come to the Auction for the Animals Friday, August 26.


Grace Evangelical will host Interstate chairman Sunday

Grace Evangelical Free Church will welcome Norm Miller, chairman of the board of Interstate Batteries this coming Sunday.

Teaming up with Joe Gibbs, Interstate is the official sponsor of NASCAR superstar Bobby LaBonte and the Interstate racecar.

In an era of corporate scandals and bad press for executives, Norm Miller is a breath of fresh air, modeling compassionate capitalism which stems from his deep commitment to Christ.

Chuck Colson, founder and president of Prison Fellowship Ministries, says, "America would be a better nation if there were more CEOs like Norm Miller. His deep faith in God is not only the handbook for his personal life, but it permeates every phase of his company, which is operated on Biblical principles."

Join Grace Evangelical Free Church 10 a.m. Sunday, in the Pagosa Springs Community Center on Hot Springs Boulevard as Norm shares his personal commitment for spiritual development that drives his life and his company.

As a bonus, everyone will receive a free copy of Norm's autobiography Beyond the Norm. Childcare will be available, and as always, all are welcome.


84-year-old Shinagle a 'shoes winner

By Mark Bergon

Special to THE PREVIEW

The 2005 version of the Archuleta County Fair Horseshoe Pitching Championship was full of surprises.

The first came in the form of Gerald Shinagel. His arrival from Cottonwood, Ariz., with his loving wife, Dagmar, was completely unexpected.

Two years ago after winning the contest he sadly reported it would probably be their last time in Pagosa Springs. The 84-year-old Shinagel not only showed up again, but also captured the crown once more by defeating the toughest field of competitors ever assembled at the fairgrounds.

Sheldon "on again" Donagon of Durango proved himself a hard man to beat taking second place. Jim Squires from Bayfield had a good day placing third, while Ignacio ace, Gene Gurule earned the 4th spot with a strong showing.

The other surprise was the play of local Andrew Book who defeated the powerful Randy Crumbaugh of Bayfield. Book also teamed up with Ian Weerstra to defeat the defending doubles champions, Sheldon Donagon and Doug "no mercy" Neuwald.

First place in doubles went to the battling Bayfield team of Jim Squires and Randy Crumbaugh. The Ignacio contingent of Gene Gurule and his nephew, Josh Gomez took second place. And the local team of Art Holloman and Mark Bergon captured third.

Thanks go to the sponsors, Silver Dollar Liquor, Copper Coin Liquor, Pagosa Liquor, Mountain Spirits, Plaza Liquor and the Spa Motel for their fine prizes and continued support.


Unitarians plan mantra meditation

By John Graves

Special to The PREVIEW

Since the Unitarian Universalist tradition draws from many sources, the Pagosah Unitarian Universalist Fellowship's weekly services reflect a rather eclectic program schedule.

For instance, in the month of August, it will range from a picnic in the park, wherein members are invited to share a poem, reading, or musical offering; a video presentation of the UU General Assembly worship service in Fort Worth last June; to a guest speaker exploring humor in religion.

However, one service each month is dedicated to those who wish to experience the relaxation and rejuvenation of guided meditation.

This Sunday, Tess Challis will lead the congregation in a mantra meditation and creative visualization exercise. The service will begin at 10:30 a.m.

The Pagosah Unitarian Universalist Fellowship Hall is 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.


Local Chatter

Civil War memories are their staff of life

By Kate Terry

PREVIEW Columnist

Last summer Jim Davenport, the commander of the Union Veterans of the Civil War, Thomas Bowman Camp in Durango, presented a program for the Archuleta County Genealogical Society.

By popular demand he's coming back this summer for the Aug. 13 meeting at 1:30 p.m. in the Family History Library of the LDS Church. His subject will be "How to Gather Information About Your Civil War Ancestors".

He will be wearing a Civil War uniform.

Davenport is also a grave registration officer and collects photos and other information about Civil War veterans' graves for a national data base. He is always looking for contributions.

One of the most successful documentary series in recent years was filmmaker Ken Burns epic series "The Civil War." Shelby Foote was the narrator who talked 89 times in the six-hour documentary. Burns said Foote was "the presiding spirit" of the series.

Foote was a writer who authored 20 novels and a 3-volume history on the Civil War entitled "The Civil War: A Narrative" that is currently ranked 15 on Modern Library's list of the 20th century's "100 best nonfiction books written in English." This publication, that Foote had thought would take five years to write, took 20 years.

Shelby Foote died in July. He was 88 years old. Many stories are told about him. This is one.

He was born in Greenville, Miss. His great-great grandfather was a confederate officer. Each April, Foote would trace up to the Shiloh Battlefield in Tennessee on the Tennessee-Mississippi border and camp a few days. Each morning he would rise early and run screaming into the morning the Rebel Yell as he believed it was done at Pittsburg Landing April 6-7, 1862.

I'm indebted for this story to Bob Watkins who writes the syndicated column "Sports in Ky."

About Foote, Watkins says, "he wrapped velvet around his prose - a man of spontaneous elegance who used language crisply, straightforward and with economy."

For those interested in what Foote's favorite book was, he read Proust's "Remembrance of Things Past" seven times.

Fun on the run ...

Will Rogers, who died in a plane crash with Wylie Post on Aug. 16, 1935, was probably the greatest political sage this country has ever known. Enjoy the following:

1. Never slap man who's chewing tobacco.

2. Never kick a cow chip on a hot day.

3. There are two theories to arguing with a woman - neither works.

4. Never miss a good chance to shut up.

5. Always drink upstream from the herd.

6. If you find yourself in a hole, stop digging.

7. The quickest way to double your money is to fold it and put it back in your pocket.

8. If you're riding ahead of the herd, take a look back every now and then to make sure it's still there.

9. Lettin' the cat outta the bag is a whole lot easier'n puttin' it back.

10. After eating an entire bull, a mountain lion felt so good he started roaring. He kept it up until a hunter came along and shot him. The moral: When you're full of bull, keep your mouth shut.


Community Center News

Creative Speaker Series opens busy center week

By Mercy Korsgren

PREVIEW Columnist

CVC Arts and Culture Committee presents Creative Spaces Speaker Series 6-8 p.m today, Monday and Thursday.

In this event guest speakers will talk about Creative Spaces: The Interplay of Art and Civic Life. Tonight, Mark Childs will talk about Public Art and Civic Spaces: Fundamental to a Civil Society.

Childs is an Associate Professor of Architecture, at University of New Mexico and regarded one of the leading experts in the country on the design of public spaces and the social aspects of urban design. As director of Design and Planning Assistance Center he works with communities to restore life to town squares and central places.

Harold Stalf, director of the Grand Junction Downtown Development Authority will talk Aug. 15 about Successful Public Art Programs: Perspective from Two Colorado Towns.

Stalf once served as assistant city manager in Aspen and as town manager of Milton, Wis., and Crested Butte, Colo. He is also the former executive director of the Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities, Colorado's Ocean Journey, the Denver Film Society and the Denver International Film Festival.

The last of the three presentations will be about Creating a Vision for Downtown: Weaving Public Art, Urban Design and Streetscape into Livable Community with Nore Winter and Joe Napoleon as presenters.

Winter is an urban design and planning consultant for more than 25 years specializing in services to communities with special amenities, distinctive natural settings and traditional neighborhoods that seek to protect their heritage.

Napoleon on the other hand is planning director for the City of Woodland Park and staff liaison between the city and the Downtown Development Authority. He currently serves on the Board of Director for the Colorado Community Revitalization Association and is involved in the Colorado Festival of World Theatre.

This series offers much valuable information and ideas that may help us prepare and decide what we need to do to address with our fast growing community. Please come out and be active with what is happening in Pagosa. Thanks to the organizer, CVC Arts and Culture Committee, for their endless effort and hard work.

Advisory and update

Thanks to Mary Jo Coulehan and Jan Brookshier for their willingness to stay on. Our new recruit is Kayla Douglas who will represent the Arts Council. A committee of seven to nine would be ideal, hence, I am still trying to recruit more. This group will help in the decision making on what programs and special events to have for the community and what fund-raising efforts to conduct for the Community Center. Committee members will also provide assistance during these events. We need new people with lots of ideas. Please call me at 264-4152, Ext. 22.

Computer lab news

The seniors' class focused last week on files - specifically on these topics: What is a file? a folder? a directory? a tree structure for file organization? We discussed the decision everyone needs to make concerning whether or not to accept the default file-saving locations which come with Windows. If you choose to go off on your own, how do you decide where to save what? Several people also asked about file extensions - what they are and how to see them. We now have a handout, by the way, which lists some common types of files and their corresponding extensions. It also explains how to make file extensions visible on your computer. Stop by the Community Center if you would like a copy.

Once you are familiar with files and how to move them around, you can tackle downloading and installing software programs. Again, class members have asked specifically for this information. It is necessary to understand this process if you are running anti-spyware and anti-virus software, since those programs require regular updating of your malware definitions. If definitions aren't kept up-to-date, you won't be protected against the latest spyware and viruses.

If you know someone who is getting ready to go off to college, you might log into the PC Magazine Web site ( and search for the recent article on questions to ask your college IT department. There is also an excellent article on buying a PC for a college student.

Upcoming events

A Cooking Class by Edith Blake will start Sept. 8 and run every Thursday through Oct. 27.

The class is limited to 20, so, sign up early. This class is for everyone. Edith loves to cook and would like to share her favorite Italian recipes. To add to her expertise, she is now vacationing in Sicily. Edith wrote, "I am not a professional, but love to cook, especially Italian food. Having grown up in a very close Sicilian family, where the dinner table was a special and fun gathering place, I've always found mealtimes to be an important part of family living. In the fall of 2006 I'll be traveling to Italy to take some cooking lessons in Tuscany, something I've always wanted to do."

The class is free but members will be asked to share the cost of the ingredients. Call 264-4152, Ext 21 if you're planning to attend the class.

Pat Wissler, a part time Pagosa resident writes poetry and short stories. She would like to share this talent with the community. Watch for further details as to what day and time this program will be available to all. Thanks, Pat for responding to the Center's needs for free programs.

Activities needed

Do you have a special talent or hobby that 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 any of this interest group. Someone even asked me about the possibility of starting an Irish/Scottish dancing group for fun. Call Mercy, 264-4152.

Activities this week:

Today - 8 a.m.-3 p.m., Realtors' Association Orientation Class for new members; 9 a.m.- 3 p.m., Basic II Watercolor Workshop; 6-8 p.m. CVC creative places speakers series

Friday, Aug. 12 - 9 a.m.-3 p.m., Basic II Watercolor Workshop; 11:15-11:35 a.m, Senior Walking Program

Saturday, Aug. 13 - 11a.m.-1p.m., Wildflower HOA meeting

Sunday, Aug. 14 - 9 a.m.-noon, Church of Christ Sunday Service; 9 a.m.-noon, Grace Evangelical Free Church Service; 2-4 p.m., United Pentecostal Church Service.

Monday, Aug. 15 - 11:15-11:35 a.m., Senior Walking Program; 12:30-4 p.m., Senior Bridge Club; 4:30-5:30 p.m., Building Blocks 4 Health; 6-8:30 p.m. CVC Creative Spaces Speaker Series.

Tuesday, Aug. 16 - 10 a.m.-noon, Senior Computer Class; 11:15-11:35 a.m., Senior Walking Program; 11 a.m.-1 p.m. , information session: Get a Masters Degree from UC on Weekends in Durango; 1-4 p.m. Computer Q&A w/ Becky

Wednesday, Aug. 17 - 10: a.m.-3 p.m., Watercolor Club Painting Session; 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Wednesday Bridge Club; 5:30-7 p.m., Photo Club meeting; 6-8 p.m., Arthritis Class; 7-8 p.m., Church of Christ Bible Study; 7-9 p.m., Grace EV music practice

Thursday, Aug. 18 - 8:30 a.m.-noon, Writers' Workshop; 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Senate Bill 94 Planning Committee meeting.

The gym is open 8 am.-noon every day, Monday to Friday, 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, mid-size and large group. 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, and then all unclaimed items will be donated to the local thrift stores. Call 264-4152.


Senior News

Senior bus service routes extended

By Musetta Wollenweber

SUN Columnist

I am very pleased to announce our senior bus service will now be rolling it's wheels even further into the county. We are now servicing the Turkey Springs Trading Post area as well as the San Juan River Village and the Echo Lake Area.

For a suggested donation of just one dollar, for folks age 60+, we will provide a chauffeured ride from your door in to town to run your errands; and by golly if you are hungry, we'll bring you by The Den for a yummy meal and great company. If you or someone you know could benefit from this service please call me at 264-2167 for details and eligibility.

Grand Canyon

Charly Heavenrich, from Boulder, first rafted the Grand Canyon in 1978 and it changed his life. Since then he has been sharing the experience of the canyon as a speaker, author, coach, photographer, and professional raft guide. Charly will be offering a presentation on the "Spirit of the Canyon" at the "Den" 1 p.m. Friday Aug. 12. Don't miss this inspiring and uplifting journey as he takes you down the Colorado River on a virtual tour through the Grand Canyon.

Mystery trip

Here's a hint for next month's trip

Nearby we will take a trip, about a one hour drive to take a dip, chocolates and sweets we do like, maybe even a little hike. Thursday, August 25, meet at The Den at 9 a.m. Thursday Aug. 25, and return around 3:30 p.m. Maximum participants is 15 and lunch is provided. The cost is $5 with annual $3 membership required to Archuleta Seniors, Inc. Call the Den for further information at 264-2167.

Computer lab news

The seniors' class focused on files last Tuesday - specifically on these topics: What is a file? A folder? A directory? A tree structure for file organization?

We discussed the decision everyone needs to make concerning whether or not to accept the default file-saving locations which come with Windows. If you choose to go off on your own, how do you decide where to save what? Several people also asked about file extensions - what they are and how to see them. We now have a handout which lists some common types of files and their corresponding extensions. It also explains how to make file extensions visible on your computer. Stop by the Community Center if you would like a copy.

Next week: Once you are familiar with files and how to move them around, you can tackle downloading and installing software programs. Again, class members have asked specifically for this information. It is necessary to understand this process if you are running anti-spyware and anti-virus software, since those programs require regular updating of your malware definitions. If definitions aren't kept up-to-date, you won't be protected against the latest spyware and viruses.

If you know someone who is getting ready to go off to college, you might log into the PC Magazine Web site ( and search for the recent article on questions to ask your college IT department. There is another excellent article on buying a PC for a college student.

Calling All Writers

If you are a writer and would like to meet with other writers in the area, well it's time to get the Writer's Club started. Dr. Alvin Franzmeier is an author with three novels under his belt. For more information contact Al at 731-9766. Learn more about Al at


No, that's not my age, but it's not too far off. This is a domino game that Asa and Denise Spencer are just dying to teach you to play. Hurry on in and learn how to play this fun game, they promise you'll have fun.

Yoga class

We normally meet every Wednesday at 10, but our instructor has a commitment on the third Wednesday of every month. Anyone willing to volunteer their time on a third Wednesday of the month to teach this class?

Sky Ute Casino

Are you ready for some fun? Join our folks from the Den and head on down to the Sky Ute Casino on Tuesday, Aug. 16. The free Casino shuttle will depart the Den at 1 p.m. and return around 6 p.m. Sign up quick, seating is limited.

White Cane Society

Gail from the Southwest Center for Independence will host this support group for folks with low vision 11 a.m. Wednesday, Aug. 17. Find out how you and your love ones can better deal with the challenges of low vision.

Pie eating contest

When is the last time you participated in a pie eating contest? Relive those fun moments with us by participating in ours. With the help of the great kitchen staff we'll be serving up individual size pies for you to gobble up lickety split! We'll also be having a toga party this same day which is also our last picnic in the park for the season. Your toga will serve as your huge napkin! We'll have prizes and lot's of fun guaranteed Friday, Aug. 26 at noon in Town Park. Please let us know that you'll be participating in the pie eating contest by the Aug. 17 so we'll be sure to make enough pies. Yum!

Forest Service

Glenn Raby, from the Forest Service, will be here once again to share with you more of his great knowledge. Come join us for lunch and then relax and enjoy Glen's power point presentation on geology 2 p.m. Wednesday, Aug.17.

Bar D Ranch outing

Yee haw, it's time to head out to the Bar D Chuckwagon Ranch again. The cost of the evening adventure and entertainment is $17 and you'll have your choice of a roast beef or chicken dinner. You'll have the opportunity to wander and visit the blacksmith shop, the artisan shop, leather shop and even a chocolate factory! Along with the price of your meal is also a great western stage show, what an evening of fun! We are providing transportation for a fee, seating is limited so get signed up today for this fun evening on Thursday, Aug. 18.

Flower Fairy

The Flower Fairy struck again! Thank you to this anonymous person who ordered a beautiful bouquet of flowers for each of our home-delivered recipients and the volunteers who delivered the flowers. This person had just enjoyed a trip out to Williams Lake and enjoyed the wildflowers there so much, that this individual felt our home delivered folks should enjoy flowers too. What a wonderful gift and thank you.

Free movie, popcorn

This month our free movie is "Big Fish" (rated PG). This humorous and touching movie is about a son who tries to learn more about the life of his dying father by piecing together facts out of the various fantastic tales and legends he's been told over the years. Join us in the lounge 1 p.m. Friday, Aug. 19 for this free movie and popcorn.

Don't pay

What do you do when you receive merchandise you didn't order? According to the Federal Trade Commission, you don't have to pay for it. Federal laws prohibit mailing unordered merchandise to consumers and then demanding payment.

Unordered merchandise - What You Should Know!

Here are some questions and answers about dealing with the topic.

Q. Am I obligated to return or pay for merchandise I never ordered?

A. No. If you receive merchandise you didn't order, you have a legal right to keep it as a free gift.

Q. Must I notify the seller if I keep unordered merchandise without paying for it?

A. You have no legal obligation to notify the seller. However, it is a good idea to write a letter to the company stating that you didn't order the item and, therefore, you have a legal right to keep it for free. This may discourage the seller from sending you bills or notices, or it may help clear up an honest error.

Send your letter by certified mail. Keep the return receipt and a copy of the letter for your records. You may need it later.

Q. Is there any merchandise that may be sent legally without my consent?

A. Yes. You may receive samples that are clearly marked free, and merchandise from charitable organizations asking for contributions. You may keep such shipments as free gifts.

Call AARP ElderWatch for any additional information. Help Prevent Financial Elder Abuse!

Call 1-800-222-4444

Activities at a Glance

Friday, Aug. 12 - Qi Gong 10 a.m.; Blood pressure check up, 11-12 a.m.; gym walk, 11:15 a.m.; Senior board meeting (local council on aging), 1 p.m.; Journey through the Grand Canyon with professional photographer, Charly Heavenrich, 1 p.m.

Monday, Aug. 15 - Medicare counseling, 11 a.m.-1 p.m.; gym walk, 11:15 a.m.; Bridge 4 Fun, 1 p.m.

Tuesday, Aug. 16 - Basic computer, 10 a.m.; gym walk, 11:15 a.m.; Canasta, 1 p.m.; Sky Ute Casino trip 1 p.m.

Wednesday, Aug. 17- Yoga in Motion, 10 a.m.; Pinochle, 1 p.m.;

Friday, Aug. 19 - Qi Gong, 10 a.m.; gym walk, 11:15 a.m.; Bridge 4 Fun, 1 p.m.; Free Movie, "Big Fish", 1 p.m.


(subject to change)

Suggested donation $2.50 for ages 60+, all others $4.50

Salad Bar everyday - 11:30 a.m.

Friday, Aug. 12 - Beef stew and veggie, citrus cup and biscuit.

Monday, Aug.15 - Baked fish fillet, parsleyed potatoes, spinach, mandarin oranges and whole wheat roll.

Tuesday, Aug. 16 - Salisbury steak, mashed potatoes and gravy, beets and melon cup.

Wednesday, Aug. 17 - Chicken cacciatore, parsley noodles, asparagus, peaches.

Thursday, Aug. 18 - meal served in Arboles, please call for menu and reservations.

Friday, Aug. 19 - Baked potato with cheesy broccoli, green beans, whole wheat roll and mixed fruit.


Veteran's Corner

VA ID cards will be available in Durango

By Andy Fautheree

PREVIEW Columnist

I have been informed the equipment to make official Department of Veterans Affairs ID cards will be available in Durango in August and September.

This is a rare opportunity to obtain this important VA card in our local area. Veterans usually have to travel to Albuquerque VA Medical Center to obtain the card. It is recommended you replace any old VA ID cards with the new version that has a photo ID and does not show your social security number.

National Guard Armory

The ID card making equipment will be at the Durango National Guard Armory, 283 Girard St. No. 1 (across the street from the Chocolate Factory). This location is in the Bodo Park center just east of town. Coming from Pagosa area you can turn left at the main traffic light at the Mall, then turn left along the frontage road, and then the first right at Girard Street.

Service hours

The service will be available at this location 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday through Friday. It is recommended you call 247-4167, Ext. 1, and make a reservation to have your card made. Bring a copy of your DD214 discharge paper. I understand they will have a VA computer system for those of you enrolled in VA health care. But, I would bring a copy of your DD214 just in case. If you do not have your DD214 stop by and see me and we will send off for an official copy.

Retirees, dependents

ID cards can also be made for all current and retired military personnel, and authorized dependents.


Don't forget to call or stop by my office with your VA health care appointments for the Share-A-Ride (SAR) 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.

VSO vacation

The Veterans Service Office will be closed while I am on vacation Aug. 15-23. If you need to schedule the VSO VAHC transportation vehicles during the period I am away you may call the Archuleta County Commissioners' office at 264-8300. Please see me when I return for VA benefit claims and applications.

Durango VA Clinic

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

More information

For information on these and other veterans' benefits please call or stop by the Archuleta County Veterans Service Office on the lower floor of the county courthouse. The office number is 264-8375, fax is 264-8376, e-mail The office is open 8 a.m.-4 p.m., Monday through Thursday; Friday by appointment. Bring your DD Form 214 (Discharge) for registration with the county, application for VA programs, and for filing in the VSO office.


Library News

We need library style buddy

poppies to finish funding library

By Christine Eleanor Anderson

My Dad was a radar gunner in World War II. He went into France after D-Day.

I never heard him talk about anything except the time when he was stationed in Greenland (or was it Iceland?) before the invasion. He and his tent mates went into town to buy huge, brown paper bags full of wonderful, buttery pastries which they brought back and ate in cold tents. Once he mentioned a great young colonel who went into France and didn't come out. That was all.

Come Memorial Day though, Dad always took me down to the dark, old wooden VFW hall where we picked up little brown sacks of "poppies" to sell. These poppies were stiff, enlarged, red 4-leaf clover like affairs, with a vivid green pea in the center. I had no idea they were the symbols of the poppies of Flanders Field, the blood bath of World War I, and the sacrifice of our soldiers dying overseas.

This was my earliest experience with fund raising. (Not counting, of course, personal fund raising, pulling my little red wagon behind me, scavenging for pop bottles to turn in for deposits.) I loved walking with Dad from house to house, seeing the nickels and dimes and quarters-and sometimes even dollars-go into the jar.

I later realized that much of what is good in America is funded by philanthropy. Our incredible public institutions - the ones that enriched and enabled my life, and the lives of my brothers and sisters - were created and dependent upon the generosity of large donors, as well as those giving nickels and dimes and quarters.

Every other week in the summer, Mom took my sisters and me to the little Carnegie library to get stacks of books. Most of us were incredibly lucky to be able to get into the great state institutions, University of Illinois, Florida, Oregon, Idaho, that educate the children of the middle class with tax money from all citizens, and additional riches from private donors.

Yes, there are big donors, like the Krannerts, who gave the wonderful theater to University of Illinois, where I still remember being stunned by the power of my first Othello. And, there are small donors, like Gram and her friends, who opened the clasps on their modest pocketbooks and gave to the DAR for my tuition scholarship of $242 each semester. This gift let me go to school having only to work for my dirt cheap, co-op housing and my $7 a week food allowance. My brothers and sisters and I wouldn't have made it through to our PhDs and law degrees and master's degrees without the support of enormous public generosity. We all understand what makes a great democracy: a committed, caring citizenry.

Lenore told me she spent three years writing grant applications. She raised a stunning amount of money to renovate the library, almost $800,000. A lot of the money came via big grants from foundations: Boettcher, Gates, El Pomar. And a lot of other money, smaller amounts, but very important, came from local sources: The Friends of the Library, The Womens' Civic Club, other caring organizations and many private donors who have given and given.

Joan Rohwer, Chairperson of the Library Board, stepped in later and, with her dedication and determination, got an additional Energy Impact Grant from the State of Colorado. The library staff has worked with these groups and helped also. The annual book sale is coming up Sept. 3, at the Visitor's Center, and all hands are on deck.

In any building project, the unforeseen happens: foundations are deficient, the old parking lot turns out to be fragile and unable to bear the stress of construction machines, a new librarian walks in and insists on more telcom and data wiring for future growth and flexibility.

So, unexpectedly, I'm at bat, in the bottom of the ninth. We need to raise $100,000 to finish this community treasure. We are not talking about money for fripperies. We can sit on orange crates for a while. We can't do without telcom and data wiring. It has to go in now in order to let the library blossom and grow later. Nor can we do without a functional parking lot.

When I think of this $100,000, I see the nickels and dimes and quarters and dollars like the ones Dad and I collected for selling poppies. I think if every person in this county gave $8, we'd be home. But I do know how much $8 means to some people. I can still remember how badly I felt when I had to call home to borrow $7 from Dad for materials for my tailoring class at the university.

We are looking for more grants, we are investigating raffles, we are looking at a Kids' Kampaign, where the handprint of every kid in the county goes on a piece of art, or rock or wall, for a contribution. Maybe we can have an "adopt-a-kid's hand" program to help kids who can't afford a contribution to still take part.

Imagine the adult coming back from college, or the Army, later, looking at their own child-sized hand print, in the library where they loved the summer reading program. My brother-in-law Stefan just e-mailed a picture of the new Denver Art Museum. He was delighted to tell that his big paw was permanently celebrated on the wall there, in exchange for his donation. Suggestions are solicited!

Some people and institutions in this community have given and given and given. At the last Board meeting a $500 check from one citizen was passed around, almost reverently. Letters went out this week asking previous donors if they can and will give again.

Maybe some of you reading this haven't had time to volunteer for the library and haven't given in the past. Maybe you will pull out your checkbook now, knowing how important that contribution is to keeping democracy alive, to keeping public libraries the vibrant guardians of information they must be.

And, if you are one of the community curmudgeons who doesn't believe in contributing or volunteering, you believe you made your own way in the world, without benefit of being part of a great nation that has thrived on the selfless giving of so many, well, at least smile and wave when I walk by, dogs in tow, pulling my little red wagon around town, collecting bottles for refunds to fund the library!


Arts Line

Two key exhibits are underway at same time

By Kayla Douglass

PREVIEW Columnist

Seven members of the Pagosa Springs Photography Club are exhibiting their prints through Aug. 31 in the Pagosa Springs Arts Council building.

Club members committed to the exhibit are Scott Allen, Bruce Andersen, Jan Brookshier, Barbara Conkey, Al Olson, Jim Struck and Bill Woggon. Each participant will show three of his or her fine art prints.

The exhibit will also feature handmade jewelry by local artist Cynthia Harrison. She uses a lost wax fabrication method for jewelry made of sterling silver, fine silver and 14-karat gold, as well as stone insets. This show will feature her horse-theme jewelry.

The opening reception for the show will be 5 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 11. Regular gallery hours to view the show are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.

PSAC juried show

The PSAC-sponsored second annual Juried Art Exhibit opened last week at the Wild Spirit Art Gallery.

Exhibits are usually held at the Arts Council Gallery in Town Park, but this month we are sponsoring two exhibits (see above).

The Juried Art Exhibit features fine art in water media, oil, pastels and drawings and PSAC awarded prizes totaling $1,800.

The first-place award of $1,000 was given to Pat Erickson for her watercolor titled "Input Overload." Second place, and $500, was awarded to Eric Cundy, for his colored pencil titled "Desert Hallucination." Lynn Cluck won the third-place award of $200 for her pastel titled "Left Over."

Two honorable mentions were also awarded - to Patricia Black for her watercolor "Indian Corn VI," and to Darlene Cotton for her acrylic and gouache piece "Colorado Bear Country."

Other artists in the exhibit include Sandy Applegate, David Guthrie, Julian Ralph, Maryellen Morrow, Lynne Toepfer, Verna Marie Campbell and Sabine Baeckmann Elge. The People's Choice Award of $100 will be presented at the end of the exhibit.

Pagosa artist Carole Cooke was the juror. Carole is known for her evocative plein aire landscapes. She is a participant in such prestigious annual exhibitions as the Masters of the American West at the Autry National Center in Los Angeles; the Western Visions Exhibition at the National Museum of Wildlife Art in Jackson Hole, Wyo.; and the Colorado Governor's Invitational Show at the Loveland Museum of Art in Colorado. Carole has been featured in Southwest Art Magazine and was recently profiled again in the May/June 2005 issue of Art of the West Magazine.

Please be sure to stop by the Wild Spirit Gallery this month to vote for your favorite.

A special thank you goes to Wild Spirit Art Gallery for hosting this exhibit and to Herman Riggs Realty fora generous donation toward the award's prize.

Creative Spaces

The Community Vision Committee Arts and Culture Committee is proud to present a series of three talks in August.

Each evening begins with a reception in the community center 6 to 6:30 p.m., and the presentation will take place at 6:30 . The first talk will be Aug. 11 and is titled "Public Art and Civic Spaces: Fundamental to a Civil Society." It features speaker Mark Childs, associate professor of architecture at the University of New Mexico. Childs is one of the leading experts in the country on the design of public spaces and the social aspects of urban design. As director of design of the Planning Assistance Center, he works with communities to restore life to town squares and central plazas.

The subject for Aug. 15 is "Successful Public Art Programs: Perspectives from Two Colorado Towns" with Harold Stalf and Joe Napoleon. Stalf is the director of the Grand Junction Downtown Development Authority, and has served as assistant city manager in Aspen and as town manager for Milton, Wisc. and Crested Butte. Stalf is the former executive director of the Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities, Colorado's Ocean Journey, the Denver Film Society and the Denver International Film Festival. Napoleon is planning director for the City of Woodland Park and staff liaison between the city and the Downtown Development Authority. He currently serves on the board of directors for the Colorado Community Revitalization Association and is involved in the Colorado Festival of World Theatre.

The final evening in the series is Aug. 25 - "Creating a Vision for Downtown: Weaving Public Art, Urban Design and Streetscape into a Livable Community" with Nore Winter, an urban design and planning consultant for more than 25 years. Winter specializes in services to communities with special amenities, distinctive natural settings and traditional neighborhoods that seek to protect their heritage.

For more information contact Angela Atkinson at 731-9897.

Business of Fiction

The Business of Fiction workshop with Marcia K. Preston will offer an overview of the creative and the business side of writing fiction for publication.

Topics for discussion include techniques for plotting, writing dialogue and structuring scenes, as well as advice on marketing and publishing.

Preston grew up on a wheat farm in central Oklahoma, near a town not too different from the setting of her mystery series featuring Chantalene Morrell, daughter of a Gypsy mother and a redneck father. "Song of the Bones," the second title in the series, won the 2004 Mary Higgins Clark Award for suspense fiction and the Oklahoma Book Award in fiction. The first book in the series, "Perhaps She'll Die," was nominated for the Mary Higgins Clark Award, and for Macavity and Barry awards in the Best First Mystery division. Marcia's first general fiction, "The Butterfly House," was released in January 2005 and has become popular with book clubs and reading groups. Her next novel, scheduled for release in April 2006, deals with the ripple effects of a heart transplant.

Since 1986, Marcia has edited and published ByLine, a monthly magazine for aspiring writers ( As a freelancer, Marcia's work has appeared in a long list of national magazines, including Delta SKY, Southwest Art, Wildlife Art, Woman's Day, Flower and Garden, and Highways. She lives in Edmond, Okla., with her husband, Paul, where they garden and dodge tornadoes. Marcia is the sister of Pagosa's own Jan Brookshier.

The workshop will be held 8:30 a.m.-noon Thursday, Aug. 18, at the community center. Cost of the workshop is $25. Call PSAC at 264-5020 to register now. Space is limited.

Calendar 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 12 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.

Joye Moon workshop

Joye Moon will once again conduct a four-day watercolor workshop for the Pagosa Springs Arts Council. She will 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 the 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.

PSAC Watercolor Club

The club was formed in the winter of 2003. Since that time, Pagosa watercolorists have met at 10 a.m. the third Wednesday of each month in the arts and craft space at the community center. The rooms are available to us for the day and we each contribute $5 for the use of the space. The venue for the day varies as watercolorists get together to draw and paint. We sometimes have a demonstration of technique from a professional watercolorist or framer. Other times, a few people bring still lifes or photos or projects they want to complete.

Come join us, bring your lunch and your watercolor supplies for a fun day. The next meeting is Wednesday, Aug. 17.

Call for entries

Pagosa Springs is home to many woodworkers who design and construct a wide range of products including furniture, turned bowls, carvings etc.

PSAC will again sponsor an exhibit in which Pagosa's finest woodworkers can show their newest wares. The Fine Woodworking Exhibit starts Sept. 29 and continues through Oct. 31.

The Arts Council is requesting applications from area woodworkers. Selection will emphasize a balance between art and craftsmanship.

For more information, contact the gallery at 264-5020, e-mail, contact David Smith at 264-6647 or e-mail him at

 PSAC events

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.

Through Aug. 31 - 2005 Juried Art Exhibit, Wild Spirit Gallery.

Through Aug. 31 - Photo Club Exhibit, Town Park Gallery.

Aug. 20 - Drawing with Randall Davis, 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. Meet at community center.

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. 12-14 - Intermediate Watercolor Workshop with Denny and Ginnie, 9 a.m. - 3:30 p.m., community center.

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 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

Flame is our friend - with some exceptions

By Karl Isberg

PREVIEW Columnist



Since that first big-browed bozo threw a deer carcass in the flames of a lightning-struck tree and said "Mmmm, hair burn off ... this good ... no more venison tartare," the conjunction of fire and food has been a welcome tradition.

There are pitfalls, of course.

Occasionally, the joining of fire and food produces a terrifying culinary experience; edibles get charred, a bit black around the edges, and the enjoyment index tails off dramatically.

This happens most often at the typical backyard barbecue.

Especially when sausages hit the grill.

It takes a maestro to walk the tightrope when a batch of bratwurst begins to explode and drain.

My friend Jack is just such a master - a sensei of sausage. When Jack works a grill loaded with grease-leaking brats, the plump beauties spit their volatile fuel on the heat source below and the fire storm that results is so intense it creates its own weather system. But somehow Jack emerges from the cloud of dense, oily smoke with a platter full of oh-so-right links, a huge smile creasing his smudged mug. Jack is from South Dakota. He understands pork; he is undeterred by a grease fire.

Some folks don't have the nerve to tread a path where the introduction of wildfire threatens not only the meal but homes and neighborhoods as well. I have no respect for these people.

I see plenty of them in food magazines.

I like to peruse cooking magazines. I don't have subscriptions. I don't buy these publications. I scan the salutes to pretense at the grocery store, attempting to gather as much info as possible before I notice the store manager at the end of the aisle, arms crossed, a scowl on his face.

Each issue presents at least one feature where a posse of beautiful people gather at someone's spacious digs to eat a meal that took at least seven hours to prepare at a cost somewhere in the range of $1,000 for a party of eight. These people are unwrinkled, they propose grandiose toasts, and they smile big, theatrical "I've spent a fortune at the dentist" smiles. There is no spinach stuck between teeth, and there is never a report of an unmanageable fire at the site of the party. No one suffers grease burns. No one is from South Dakota.

If you ever meet one of these effete, flameless geeks, punch him or her, for me.

Their parties are very unlike a party I once attended where fire was the headline act; where there was nerve, where there was flair, where there was derring-do. Fire and food met, and fire won.

It was the "Greatest Fondue Party in History."

The party was organized by my friend, Fred. Freddie had emerged from the army the year before and had thrown himself headlong into the task of producing events that united disparate elements of society.

Freddie worked his cross-cultural magic with food. He threw frequent dinners to which he invited friends from his oh-so-Italian/American childhood (most of whom dressed in black), jazz musicians, hippies (when and if they were able to successfully follow directions to the site of the party), political extremists from both ends of the spectrum, artists and writers, and people who carried guns under the seats in their cars.

Feasts took place at Fred's family "compound" in Lakewood with guests gathering in the huge back yard in temperate weather, or in a large open room in the basement: the party room.

Generally, the fare was something close to Fred's heart and genes - something Italian, something simmered for hours. Sauces. Pasta, and plenty of it. Wine from a family-owned liquor distributorship. Meats from grandpa's market. Fish from a company owned by a cousin.

Then, the fondue craze hit America. Open flame made the scene.

Prior to that time, you had to take a trip to an obscure Swiss village or spend an evening at a bizarre little boite in a ski town to experience fondue. Suddenly, there were fondue pots and sterno cookers on the shelves of every department store in the U.S. Some moron in the marketing biz did a good job, cracked the consumer whip, and middle America lined up to purchase gallons of cheap cooking oil.

Freddie was not immune. He was a slave to fashion.

The fondue party was to be held in the party room. It would be the ultimate with-it gathering.

Hoo boy, the party room was a sight: the room was full of round tables, each table surrounded by chairs, each table draped with a checked tablecloth, each table sporting two fondue pots (avocado, gold, copper, yellow or red), one pot full of oil and the other full of molten cheese, each pot sitting above a blazing heat source. The lights in the room were turned down and the glow from the sterno-fueled burners beckoned an otherworldly blue welcome to the diners.

Guests took their seats. Contrary to Freddie's universalist intent, each social group captured its own table.

One table was occupied by guys dressed in black and women with lots of jewelry and very large hair.

At another table sat the jazz musicians; they wore dark glasses and tapped rhythms on the edge of the table to accompany the melodies that ran through their heads. (The odd thing is, they all appeared to hear the same melody!)

A couple of the hippies had their noggins down on their table - resting, meditating, doing whatever they did during those refreshing little breaks in their journey down the stream of consciousness.

The artists and writers sat around their table and pouted and griped because none of them produced anything marketable and they were "misunderstood."

Politicos argued once they were seated, the turmoil peaking when an SDS organizer made fun of a Young Republican's wingtips.

Freddie brought out platters loaded with cubed meats, chopped veggies, and hunks of bread, and he urged everyone to pick up long fondue forks and begin deep frying their dinners.

Everything went well, for a while.

Until Wanda lost control.

Wanda was one of the hippies and she was a striking sight: Wanda's body mass was (how shall we say this delicately?) ... oddly distributed ... so she wrapped herself in billowing bright-colored clothes and various long and exotically decorated scarves. She arrived at the party with her boyfriend, Gordon, seated in the passenger seat of a rattletrap MG-TC, the scarves flagging out behind the puttering British monster, Wanda a not-yet strangled and poorly balanced Isadora Duncan, the queen of the Monarch butterflies.

Once in the party room Wanda found her mates attempting to put pieces of, like, you know man, vegetables and bread (no meat, please) on these weird looking far out long things with, like, sharp things on the end. It was so cool, man. It was so freaky. They were sticking the stuff down in these, like, hot things on the table, man. Wow.

So, Wanda, followed suit.

Or tried.

She successfully loaded a huge amount of vegetable matter on her fork, but she was mildly disoriented and failed to establish a solid physical base to compensate for her balance problem. She aimed her weird looking far out thing with, like, sharp things on the end, at the fondue pot full of hot oil, man. Had she managed to connect, this would have produced the tastiest morsel of the evening.

Wanda did not connect.

The reason Wanda did not connect? It was 1967, for pete's sake! For many people in the '60s, including Wanda, accurate spatial perception was the last thing necessary for a satisfying life. Couple that with the aforementioned unique distribution of body mass and ...

Wanda missed the fondue pot by five inches. Her weird looking far out thing with, like, sharp things on the end, plunged past the receptacle and caught the fashionable checked tablecloth with one of those far out sharp things, man. Propelled by some serious momentum, Wanda skidded across the top of the table, carrying the fashionable checked tablecloth with her, upsetting the pot of oil.

And the blazing sterno burner.

Wow, man.



Wanda scurried to safety as the inferno worked its way across the surface of the table. A couple of her pals sat immobile, transfixed by the incredible colors in the flames.

Far out.

Others at the party did not react as well.

Being high-strung by nature, the politicos leaped as one to their feet, upsetting the table and starting a blaze on the floor. Each loudly accused the others of responsibility for the fire.

Several of the gals with huge hair started screaming and ran to the periphery of the room, clutching their temples with long-nailed fingers, chased by disgruntled and angry black-clad Mediterranean paramours, the developing crisis producing quarts of adrenalin and inspiring thoughts of violence.

Artists and writers pondered the irony of a premature end to life - before an insensitive world could awaken and acknowledge their enormous talents.

The jazz musicians upped the tempo as the fire began to produce significant smoke.

Freddie ran from the kitchen with a pan full of water.

Freddie learned something about physics that night: specifically, that water poured on burning oil does not always extinguish the flame - it spreads the burning fat more efficiently.

He should have used the molten cheese.

Members of the Lakewood fire department understood the principle.

A few of us stayed outside the building as the firemen did their work. We watched the MG sputter down the driveway, Wanda's scarves fluttering in the air behind it.

We accompanied Freddie to the basement when we got the all-clear. There was quite a bit of water on the floor, with little bits of fruit and veggies bobbing on the surface. It was pathetic.

The smoke damage was less than expected - some of the bullfight posters were lost for sure, but a thorough cleaning, a new carpet and a fresh coat of paint would return the party room to fighting prime.

But there would be no returning Freddie to his glory. The event squelched his desire to entertain; he gave up his "hands across the sea" sociological experiment. He retired as the Toots Shore of the underground to devote his energies to running a "bill collection agency" for his uncle, Big Ralph, and it wasn't until 1978 that he hosted another dinner party.

You can be sure of two things: Wanda was not invited, and there was no open flame.

But, don't be deterred when it comes to joining food and fire. Just steer clear of strangely-shaped hippies and fondue pots. There is room for a pyromaniacal soul in cooking; on occasion, great food actually involves setting something on fire.

This happens when spirits are used and flame quickly exhausts the alcohol, leaving the flavor of the spirit behind.

There are, for example, several notable desserts to which flame is applied. The essence of a schlocky restaurant is a mess of Cherries Jubilee set ablaze tableside by an inept waiter. It's more fun than the carnival.

In the kitchen, a piece of nearly cooked meat and a bit of stock are sometimes doused with a small measure of spirits and the mix is set ablaze. The meat is removed and the liquid in the pan is reduced and poured over the meat just before serving or used as the base for a sauce.

Here's one to try,

Get yourself a nice hunk of beef tenderloin - half a pound per person is good. Go for a fairly thin medallion, 1 1/2 inches at the most. Pound it out a bit thinner than that.

Rub the meat with coarse-ground black pepper and some crushed garlic and let it sit for a while.

Sauté thinly sliced onion in olive oil in a heavy pan, over medium-low heat, until golden. Remove the onions to a bowl and cover.

Wipe the pan and put on high heat. Add a small amount of olive oil, enough to coat the bottom of the pan.

When the oil begins to smoke add the meat and sear quickly - perhaps two minutes. Turn and sear the other side of the steak.

Deglaze the pan thoroughly with a small amount of beef stock. When the stock is reduced, add half a jigger or so of cognac and set the liquid in the pan on fire. Take care with your eyebrows.

Whooweee. Freak out on the intense colors in the flames. The last time I did this, I saw the images of Janis Joplin and Hitler in the flames.

Remove the meat to a plate and tent with foil.

Add more beef stock, so there is approximately 1 1/2 cups of liquid in the pan. If you have some veal demi-glace, add a tablespoon or so to the stock (you do have the demi-glace, don't you?). Reduce over high heat by more than two-thirds. Add three or four cloves minced garlic and mix in a tablespoon or so of stone ground mustard. Turn the heat to medium low.

Add the onions (and any juices from meat left on the plate). Simmer covered for a few moments.

At the last minute, add some heavy cream and a pat of butter. When the butter melts, top the meat with a bit of onion and sauce. Serve with a sprinkling of chopped parsley and the remaining sauce on the side.

Just in case there is trouble, keep a pot of molten cheese handy. If the flames get out of hand, man, like wow, you know what to do.


Extension Viewpoints

Homemade ice cream's great, but a salmonella threat

By Bill Nobles

PREVIEW Columnist

Homemade ice cream is a special summertime treat. However, for hundreds of consumers each year it can also become a threat as they suffer the effects of salmonellosis. According to a report by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), between 1996 and 2000, 17 outbreaks in the U.S. involving more than 500 people were traced to Salmonella bacteria in homemade ice cream. Even commercially-prepared ice cream can become plagued with Salmonella, as evidenced by the recent nationwide recall of "Cake Batter" ice cream from Cold Stone Creamery stores in the U.S.

The Cold Stone Creamery outbreak was discovered when multiple cases of Salmonella Typhimurium infection were reported in Minnesota, Washington, Oregon and Ohio with the common pattern of consuming "Cake Batter" ice cream shortly before onset of illness. In homemade ice cream, Salmonella Enteritidis, which can be transmitted from the hen to the egg yolk before the shell forms, is the more common culprit. Because of this, it's no longer safe to assume that a clean, uncracked raw egg is safe to eat.

Salmonella infection is characterized by fever, diarrhea and abdominal cramps usually beginning 12 to 72 hours after eating or drinking a contaminated food item and lasting up to a week. Although most people require no medical treatment, it can be life threatening for those at high risk for foodborne illness, including infants, older people, pregnant women and people with weakened immune systems.

While commercially manufactured ice cream is typically made with pasteurized eggs or egg products, recipes for homemade ice cream often use raw eggs in the base mixture. Here are some suggestions for safe alternatives to using raw eggs in your homemade ice cream:

- Find a recipe that is eggless. It's easy and tastes just as good.

- Use pasteurized shell eggs or pasteurized egg substitutes in recipes calling for raw eggs. They can be found in the dairy case near the regular eggs. The FDA requires that pasteurized shell eggs be individually marked or specially packaged to prevent intermingling with unpasteurized eggs. Although pasteurized eggs may cost a few cents more, the pasteurization process destroys the Salmonella bacteria.

- Use a recipe that contains a cooked custard base. The custard base must reach 160º F measured with a food thermometer, in order to kill the Salmonella Enteritidis. This is also the point at which the mixture will coat a metal spoon. Resist the temptation to taste-test the mixture during preparation when the custard isn't fully cooked. After cooking, chill the custard thoroughly before freezing.

Even when using pasteurized products, the FDA and the USDA advise consumers to start with a cooked base for optimal safety, especially if serving people at high risk for foodborne illness. Additionally, use only pasteurized milk and cream when making homemade ice cream. A recipe for homemade ice cream using a cooked egg base is available on the American Egg Board's Web site,, along with recipes for other foods traditionally made with raw or undercooked eggs, such as mayonnaise, Caesar salad dressing, and eggnog. The University of Nebraska Cooperative Extension also offers an eggless ice cream recipe at



Annie Sue O'Donnell

Annie Sue O'Donnell, born July 20, weighed in at 7 pounds, 6 ounces and was 19 inches long. Her parents are Sean and Connie Sue O'Donnell and she has a brother, Aidan, at home. Maternal grandparents are A.B. and Martha Sue Crabbs of Green Mountain Falls, Co., and paternal grandparents are Mike and Cherry O'Donnell of Pagosa Springs.


Audreauna Lillyann Shahan

Congratulations to Jessica Shahan and Josh Ray on the birth of Audreauna Lillyann Shahan. Audreauna was born at the University of New Mexico Hospital and weighed 3 lbs. 2 oz. and was 15 inches long.




Benjamin Horseman

Benjamin L. Horseman, 70, born Sept. 26, 1934, in Hays, Mont., passed away peacefully at home on Tuesday, August 2, 2005. His family has returned him to his place of birth for traditional ceremony.

Ben and his dog, "Girl," could be seen walking all over town. "Girl" passed away in February of this year.

There will be a memorial potlatch celebration in his honor on Sunday, along the East Fork River. All who knew Ben are invited. Contact Rose Greenan or Greg Giehl at 264-0055.


 Business News

Chamber News

Pagosa lives and breathes volunteerism

By Mary Jo Coulehan

SUN Columnist

Several large events have just ended and a few more are still to come to our community. I would like to take this time to acknowledge why these festivities occur:


These people are the lifeblood of this county. Take first the County Fair. A volunteer board worked for months to continue to carry on a 50+ year heritage for all who live and visit Archuleta County. The Fair also garners countless hours of volunteerism from so many individuals from ticket takers, to the superintendents, to the setting up of the fair itself. And how about the 4-H children and their families? It's never just the child involved. The enormous hours of raising and then getting animals ready for show or the hours put into a project; it is always a family event.

Kudos to all who made this year's Fair a success and enjoyable for all of us who were able to attend. Thank you for continuing to promote our slice of heritage.

Then we also concluded another successful season of Music in the Mountains. The venue was spectacular as David and Carol Brown's BootJack Ranch gave true meaning to "Music in the Mountains". There were many other amenities they provided that helped to make this concert series a joy to attend for both the artist and the spectator. JoAnn Laird and her whole volunteer staff worked week after week to offer quality service to all who attended. Lisa Scott and Claudia Rosenbaum spearheaded another delightful Family Festivo with all their volunteers performing above the usual expectations (hundreds of people served food in less than 20 minutes!). And what would this concert series be without Jan Clinkenbeard and the hours of dedication that she and her husband Bob gave to this endeavor.

Of course Jan also gathered a group of people to the advisory board who donated innumerable hours to the success of this musical series as well. And then we also have individuals and businesses that donated financially to bring this caliber of music to Pagosa Springs. We thank you for your generosity.

Individuals give of themselves whatever their passion might be. We thank you for your commitment whether it be of time, money or both! Our community revolves around this generosity. Thank you one and all for giving us the pleasure of so many events. And with that statement in mind, here are just a few more upcoming events that will revolve around even more volunteerism.

Get Set, Float!

On Saturday the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Knights of Columbus will host their annual duck race. Starting at 11:30 a.m. there will be hours of games, food, fun, prizes and raffles to entertain the kids of all ages. Winners of the games will get a free hot dog or hamburger, and Town Park will be filled with the sound of quacking ducks as every child will get a duck whistle. Then at 2:30 p.m. the ducks will be set afloat in the river to see which duck will cross the finish line first.

The first place duck will reward the sponsor with $1,000, the second place duck will award $500 and the third place duck will pay out $100. You may sponsor a duck for $5 and duck sponsorship may be purchased here at the Visitor Center or from other designated places where the Knights have set up shop. You may also wait until the day of the race to get a duck. So test your luck and the skill of your plastic duck and attend this always fun event held in our beautiful Town Park.

United Way golf

United Way starts to kick off its fund raising season with several golf events. The first event is a family fun night Sunday, August at Bogey's Golf. From 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. play miniature golf and enjoy music, prizes, food and drink all for $5 for adults and $2 for children under 6. All proceeds will benefit the 2005 Archuleta County United Way campaign. Have a great family night and know that your donation stays in Archuleta County and will service one of United Way's worthy agencies.

Then on Saturday, Aug. 27, the adults come out to play some regulation golf at United Way's annual 4 person golf scramble. A shotgun start will occur at 9 a.m. Entrance fee for the tournament is $65 and includes greens fees, cart, lunch and fun. Pagosa Springs Golf Club members will only have to pay $30. There will also be lots of prizes, contests, and a golf related silent auction. You'll be hearing more about this fun event in the next few weeks.

It's a Rodeo!

I bet you thought rodeo season was over. Not true!

Not only do we still have the Bucking H Thursday night rodeo series for the remainder of August, we will also be hosting a "first" rodeo for Pagosa: The 4-Corners Little Britches Rodeo, Aug. 19 -21. This rodeo series is a nationally run organization that has been around for over 50 years. Children from 5 years old to 19 years old may participate. This rodeo is coming to Pagosa because it will be run by volunteers! It is a 3-day event that will bring lodgers, diners and shoppers to the area. We appreciate a number of local sponsors who are also Chamber members that have helped to make this event possible. Come on out to the Red Ryder Arena to watch these talented young people as they vie for over $20,000 in cash and prizes. Admission is $5 for adults and $3 for children under 12. There will be concessions available while you are out there.

Just as a side note, congratulations to one of Pagosa's own youngsters, Ryan Montroy. Ryan was voted "Rookie of the Year" at the Little Britches National Finals in Pueblo last month. Ryan is also returning from the National High School Finals Rodeo in Gillette, Wyo., where he also garnered some awards. Charmaine Talbot while not obtaining any awards did run the best time she has ever run in her pole bending event. The other local participant, Cory Bramwell and his partner, Taos Muncy from Corona, N.M. ended up seventh in the nation in team roping against approximately 160 other teams! Taos Muncy, while not local but regional ended up second in the nation in the "All Around". He received a full college scholarship. We should be very proud of our local youth as they work hard and have fun at pursuing their passion and education. Congratulations to all these young adults!

Thanks members

Oh boy we have been busy with memberships this week at the Chamber. We have 4 new members and 11 renewals.

Let's start off the new members with Naturally Yours, Inc. Naturally Yours is a store offering organic and locally grown produce, chemical and preservative free groceries, animal tested-free body care, and environmentally safe household products. They are on the east side of town at 162 Pagosa St. and can be reached by phone for inquiries at 264-2053. Owners Christina Knuell and Tamsin Rohrich are encouraging everyone to eat healthy and shop locally. Stop by their new store and see what great products they have for you.

We welcome Vision Design, a full service Interior Design consulting firm to our ranks. Vision Design offers extensive services for residential and commercial design. They are creative, budget conscious, and strive to make customer satisfaction a priority. Anita Sherman Hughes and Nikki are located at 226 Cloud Cap and can be reached for a consultation at 731-1641. Let these ladies help you take the worry out of design and help put the fun back in with their full service design firm.

Two lodging facilities join us this week. The first is Eli and Natalie Carpenter with Condo Pagosa. This two bedroom condo has mountain views, a full kitchen for dining in or entertaining, all appliances and king and queen size beds. Condo Pagosa sleeps up to six, is kid friendly, and is within walking distance of dining, grocery, a day spa, and an Internet café. Located at 2095 Park Ave., reservations can be made by calling 731-4099. Tuck this name and number away for future reference for a special romance package!

On a little larger scale is the Chimney Rock Adobe located in Cabazon Canyon off of Colo. Hwy 151. Chimney Rock Adobe is a four bedroom, three bath beautiful earth block adobe home located 20 minutes west of Pagosa. This spacious home, fully furnished and well appointed offers a view of Chimney Rock from almost every window in the house and the hot tub! Explore the area, have fun in the game room and enjoy your privacy. Perfect for family gatherings. Give Nora Hallock a call at 946-9500 to book the house.

Let's start off our renewals this week with the non-profit organizations. First on the list is the new Archuleta County chapter of the American Red Cross; We welcome back our neighbors across the street at Seeds of Learning Family Center; Pagosa Lakes Property Owners Assoc.; Pagosa Baking Co.; Bogey's Mini Golf; K.K. Paddywhacks Embroidery; A Shoe or Two Plus; Howlin' Wolf Music; and Aspenwinds Condo Reservations

And closing this article dedicated to our many community volunteers, I would like to acknowledge Jean Sanft, another volunteer and associate Chamber member. Jean is a Chamber Diplomat as well as giving of her time for other causes in Pagosa. She loves this community and it is so evident when she talks to people. They just love her! Thank you Jean for giving your time so generously.

So thank you to the many who support the whole. Not thanked often enough, but greatly appreciated, our volunteers. You know who you are, give yourself a pat on the back!


Biz Beat

Slices of Nature

Bonnie Nyre owns and operates Slices of Nature, located at 144 Pagosa St. in downtown Pagosa Springs.

Slices of Nature features a wide array of nature-themed merchandise — home accessories and holiday items.

A newly expanded line of holiday gifts has been added to the home accessory offerings, including decorative aprons and dish towels, picture frames, candles and much more. The shop also features gourmet food items and custom gift baskets — all with that special touch of Pagosa. And, there's fresh-brewed coffees too.

Slices of Nature is open Monday through Saturday, 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Call 264-1022 for more information.



Cards of Thanks


40 years success

The Creede Repertory Theatre staff, company, and Board of Trustees would like to extend our heartfelt thanks to this glorious community that has nurtured the CRT for forty years and to all those individuals who have contributed their time and talent to our 40th anniversary celebration.

This enormous undertaking could not have been accomplished without your generosity of spirit.

Thank you to the many individuals who helped plan, organize, and realize the many events commemorating the theatre's 40th birthday. Thank you especially to the Friends of Creede Repertory Theatre for their many efforts on the theatre's behalf. And thank you to all those who participated in our celebration.

We will hold dear the memories of this extraordinary time for many years to come. Although the 40th celebration was a time to reflect on the theatre's past, we were reminded of the CRT's future which promises to be spectacular. We hope you will join us for the next forty years.


CRT staff, company, and Board of Trustees


Generous donations

Thank you from Casa de los Arcos to the following for their generous donations:

La Plata Electric and Mike Alley for donating time and equipment to move our outbuilding to the back yard;

Tommy Walkup of The Computer Guy for the tenant computer in our recreation hall;

Linda Patrick of Temple, Texas for the clothing.

Molly Johnson

and all Casa residents


Awesome crew

To the Awesome Road and Bridge Crew:

A hearty thanks to all of you for helping restore the riverbank by the bridge in Trujillo.

Through all the phone calls and my drop-ins at your office, you were always kind and supportive.

To Sue, Harvey and Robert, thank you for making it happen. With all your hectic summer road work, you still managed to help me.

Pagosa is lucky to have people like you.

Chris Terrell


Legion at fair

American Legion Post 108 wants to express sincere appreciation and thank you to all the people and the organizations that helped make the American Legion booth at the county fair a success.

A big thank you to our Legion members who assisted with time, materials or money.

We want to especially thank the nonmembers who spent many hours working the booth: Alexia Huffman, daughter of Dagmar and James Hufman; Christine Miller Mestas (Woman's Auxiliary) and Frank Mestas, Tasha Rayburn, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Jerry Rayburn; and Wesley Branham, grand nephew to Anita and Ed Dailey.

A special thanks to the many businesses in our community: Comfort One Insulation which contributed our booth space; The Hogs Breath Saloon which offered supplies at discount and freezer storage during the fair; and Lee Riley of Jann Pitcher Real Estate, who contributed the use of his van for food pickup and on-site storage.

We could not have organized and run the American Legion booth without our assistance and support and we sincerely appreciate all you have done for us.

Carmen Miller



Pagosa Lakes Recreation Center thanks Durango Orthopedics, Wells Fargo Bank, Briliam Engineering, Juan's Mountain Sports and The Springs Resort for their sponsorship of the Pagosa Lakes Triathlon. What a successful race.

We thank the volunteers who offered logistical support: Pagosa Springs High School Cross Country team, Wendy Adams, Richard Anderson, Carol Anderson, Angie Dahm, Natalie Carpenter, Dawn French, Monica Green, Pam Hopkins, Addie Greer, Linda Gundelach, Michael Ray, Gary McNaughton, Peter Van Herckie, Sue Passant and PLPOA staff.

We also thank these businesses for door prizes: Pagosa Area Chamber of Commerce, Switchback, Goodman's, Home Again, Kid and Kabooodle, Ski and Bow Rack, Your Running Store (Durango), Gem Jewelers, Harmony Works, City Market, Downside Moose and Ross Enterprises.

No race is complete without nourishment (from Peak Physical Therapy). To my co-race director, Scott Anderson, you lighten the load. I thank you all.

The high school cross country Booster Club, recipient of the proceeds, thank you as well. You have donated not just time and money but have given form, order and direction for the continued success of this athletic event.

Ming Steen and

Scott Anderson


Sports Page

78 brave the weather for Pagosa Lakes triathlon

By Ming Steen

SUN Columnist

Last Saturday's 13th annual Pagosa Lakes triathlon - a 7-mile run, 14-mile mountain bike ride, and a half-mile swim - was a wild and muddy one.

It rained persistently Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Temperatures dropped and the trails turned to the consistency of Jell-O pudding. All the athletes knew what was ahead of them - none complained, even when they had to be hosed down before being allowed into the pool.

By the time all the participants edged up to the starting line, their eager bodies and washboard tummies tucked neatly into athletic wear, the sun had burned through the morning chill but not the electrified buoyancy of the athletes.

The triathlon attracted 78 participants, both local and out-of-town. This year, some of them came from Arizona, Florida, Texas, New Mexico, South Carolina, and neighboring Colorado towns of Durango, Bayfield, Fort Garland, Hesperus, Mancos (and not-so-neighboring Colorado towns of Crested Butte, Boulder, Glenwood Springs, Lakewood and New Castle).

These visiting athletes remarked on the traditional small town friendly wave, the laid-back tenor of the event, the variety of outdoor activities other than the race itself and the aesthetic appeal of the high country.

Our local participants enjoy the communal spirit that comes partly from a low stress, not highly competitive attitude of organizers (and the participants themselves). There is a sense of all being there to share the day with each other. Additionally, because runners and bikers share a common course, they see each other more often. Since the swimming is at the end, all of the completed competitors can witness, encourage and share the excitement of the final leg of the other competitors' race.

First time triathletes had the experience of striving for something challenging and finding out at the end of the road that they had the energy, the perseverance, and the motivation to follow through until completion. And even better, they didn't kill themselves physically and mentally to accomplish that goal, even if they thought they might. And they enjoyed (almost) every single bit of it — the training, the discipline, the focus, and finally, the energy and excitement of the race.

This, I believe, was the sentiment felt by a large number of the participants at the end of Saturday's triathlon. There were big smiles all around. Afterward, when the pain began to subside.

I'm posting every participant's result because of the numbers of locals who competed successfully and who have family, friends and co-workers who I know will be full of pride at their performance. Besides, I'm also very proud of everyone's effort.

In the men's overall division it was a close race to the finish. Charlie Wertheim of Glenwood Springs crossed the finish line in 1:51:03 and Ethan Passant from Crested Butte, last year's winner, in 1:51:59. It was exciting for the spectators.

Following in third place was Pagosan J.D. Kurz, a veteran of this event and a consistent medal winner. J.D.'s time was 2:02:26. The rest that followed were: Doug Gibula (Durango) 2:03.06; Robbie Johnson (Pagosa) 2:08:24; Doug Call; Reid Kelly (Pagosa) 2:12:16; Zach Angulo (Durango) 2:12:45; Roger Jensen (Pagosa) 2:16:37; Robert Pyle (Boulder) 2:23:27; Patrick O'Brien (Pagosa) 2:30:22; Tom Dudley l (Greenville, S.C.) 2:31:54; Larry Fisher (Pagosa) 2:41:56; Preston Curry (Ropesville, Texas) 2:42:45; Richard Stam (Albuquerque) 2:57:23 who was our oldest competitor at age 67; Thomas Rumery (New Castle) 3:05:10; and Coye Jones (Pagosa) 3:09:24 (also an over 60 competitor).

K.C. O'Connor from Mancos, was the winner in the women's division with a time of 2:38:35. She was followed by Ming Steen (Pagosa) 2:41:47; Leslie Kanagy (Lakewood, ) 2:49:55; Julie Burch (Pagosa) 3:00:27; Andrea McGinn (Pagosa) 3:06:25; Theresa Snyder (Flower Mound, Texas) 3:12:42; Kelly Simonson (Pagosa) 3:13:31 and Rita Jensen (Pagosa) 3:49:22. Go girls! Let's get more ladies out next year.

In team competition, 18 teams total, the threesome of Patrick O'Brien, Tre Metzler and Tiffany Thompson dominated with a time of 1:53:54. Jerry Archuleta, Sterling Moss, and Alan Stuebe came in second at 2:07:43. Also posting a respectable finish time of 2:12:04 to nab third place was a husband and wife team of two — Diane Hardy and Jim Westmoreland.

The rest of the teams were as follows: Marlou Monterroso, Carl Nagel, John Hostetter (2:15:44); Mia Hewett, Tim Hewett, Rick Ammons (2:17:03); Byron Castaneda, Heather Dahm (2:17:03); Eliseo Baxin, Tom Steen, Shea Johnson (2:18:41); Mike Bir, Rick Cotton, Brian Burgan (2:19:36); Julie Greenley, Kristen Hopkins, Sabra Miller (2:22:50); Karen Ross, Jeff Ross, Mark Mesker (2:26:07); Mike Dudzinski, Mark DeVoti, Laurel Reinhardt (2:28:20); Sandy Gnos, Nancy Ray, Susan Coolidge (2:32:28) Cathy Dudzinski, Mark Purvis, Kelsey Anderson (2:34:41); Kurt Raymond, Melinda Lutz, Lisa Raymond (2:40:23); Fred Uehling, Gary Hopkins, Alan Powdermaker (2:41:12); Makaila Russler, Resha Watkins (2:45:14); Jim Swartz, Elvis Castaneda, Dennis Eichinger (2:55:36); and Lauri Heraty, Suellen Loher, Curt Wiggers (2:58:48).

A large number of these teams were pulled together by drawing names out of three hats (run, bike, swim) and they met for the first time just minutes before the race. The youngest competitors were two 12 year-olds, Kelsey Anderson and Shea Johnson (both swimmers). This intergenerational combination is good and great fun. Next year I would love to see more business teams coming out to support this fundraiser for the high school cross-country booster club.

Thank you to the Source, Ross Enterprises, Peak Therapy and Briliam Engineering teams from this year. I challenge La Plata, PAWSD, the Realtors Association, Chamber of Commerce, Boot Jack Ranch, Wolf Creek Ski Area, local banks, school district, etc. to put together teams (and start training now).

A successful race is not feasible without volunteers and we had fabulous volunteers. They offered logistical support - giving form, order and direction to the event.

Sponsors and businesses, as usual, provided generous cash support and door prizes. Dr. Scott Anderson and I thank all of you. The Pagosa Springs High School cross country booster club is the beneficiary from the proceeds of this event which pays for the runners three-day training camp held this weekend at the Great Sand Dunes.

It was a good triathlon - a fantastic success for all the smiling, exhausted athletes. Everyone was applauded, not just those finishing first. We all gave it everything we had, all pounded out the mileage on the same course, and all are proud of having competed and completed.


Ryder Cup inaugural a hit; Women look for its return next year

By Lynne Allison

Special to The SUN

Twenty members of the Pagosa Women's Golf Association played in the local 27-hole Inaugural Ryder Cup Tournament Aug. 2.

They were divided by handicaps into two teams - Red and Blue.

Each team partnered into five twosomes to compete against the opposing team in the following formats: Meadows, best ball gross; Piñon - modified Stableford where one point was awarded for a net bogey, two points for a net par, three for net birdie and four for net eagle.

Both teams played the Ponderosa course in an alternate shot format. All the players teed off from the first hole and then played an alternate shot throughout the nine holes from the best drive.

One point was awarded per nine holes, no points awarded for tied holes within each nine. If both teams in each flight tied one of the nine holes, a half point was awarded each team.

Representing the Blue Team were Barbara Sanborn, Bev Hudson, Lynne Allison, Jane Day, Josie Hummel, Cherry O'Donnel, Audrey Johnson, Lynne McCrudden, Barb Lange and Lynn Mollett. Representing the Red Team were Jan Kilgore, Julie Pressley, Lynda Gillespie, Marilyn Smart, Loretta Campuzano, Carrie Weisz, Sue Martin, Doe Stringer, Robyn Alspach and Sharon Taub.

Despite a seemingly lopsided final score of Blue 14 - Red 1, many of the nine hole matches were determined by a one putt or one-point margin.

Tournament organizers Julie Pressley and Carrie Weisz said they "received lots of enthusiastic and positive feedback from the participants and are sure to keep the tournament of next year's schedule.

The Association's 36-hole club championship is scheduled Aug. 15-16.

For more information contact Weisz at 731-2818.


Demolition derby drew 19 entrants; winners told

Despite a monsoonal downpour, a damp and unhappy sound system, wet spectator seats, knee-deep mud in the driving arena, and ankle-deep mud everywhere else, the Aug. 5 demolition derby was an unqualified success.

Drivers from Pagosa Springs, Manassa, Alamosa, Monte Vista, Chama, and LaJara all joined the action as a record number of derby vehicle entries (19) kept the crowd entertained for nearly four hours in an almost constant rain fall.

Indy car champion Bobby Unser joined drivers and pit crews for several hours to sign autographs and broadcast the "drivers, start your engines" announcement that signaled the beginning of the derby.

Derby fans packed the stands and stood nearly 4 deep around the arena to watch the following win:

First Place Large Division:

Eric O'Brien (LaJara) $1,000; Jacket; Hat; Trophy

First Place Compact Division:

Kevin Dorman (Pagosa Springs) $1,000; Jacket; Hat; Trophy

Second Place Large Division:

Dominick Cisneros (Alamosa) $300; Hat; Trophy

Second Place Compact Division:

Bobby Hart (Pagosa Springs) $300; Hat; Trophy

Third Place Large Division:

Mike Bishop (Pagosa Springs) $200; Trophy

Third Place Compact Division:

Brandon Cordova (Manassa) $200; Trophy

Eric O'Brien also won the "Last Man Standing Jacket."

Additionally, each second and third place winner added $24 to their winnings through donations given at the spectator entry gate.

The Beauty Car prize was awarded to Allen's Auto Body (car driven by Bobby Hart) in the amount of $100 and a $50 gift certificate from Snap-On Tools.

Judges Mike Wasinger, Stan Ott, Nate Shawcroft, Roger Cordary and Pierre Mion awarded the "Most Aggressive Driver" trophy to Jeremy Coffelt of Pagosa Springs. Jeremy also received tickets to a Colorado National Speedway event.

Many thanks to the 2005 Demolition Derby Committee, Bobby and Lisa Unser, judges, security volunteers, drivers, pit crews and fans who endured the weather to help ensure a very successful event.


Junior high sports set practices

Junior high school sports practices will begin Monday with cross country kicking things off.

Practice begins 9 a.m. Monday with an initial session meeting in front of the gymnasium.

The same site will host football and volleyball, both at 4 p.m.

All athletes must bring a copy of a current physical to participate and come prepared to workout. For more information please call the junior high office at 264-2794.


Two-man best ball leads to close scores for Pagosa Men's league

By Bill Curtiss

Special to The SUN

Playing another round of two-man best ball format Aug. 3, Truett Forrest and Dennis Yerton placed first gross in Pagosa Springs Men's Golf League action. The team scored a 66.

Mike Bomkamp and Marus Pittenger captured second place gross with 68.

Theo Vanderwiede and Casey Belarde finished third with 72.

Rick Taylor and Bob Jones won first place net with a score of 53.

In second place net were Ray Henslee and Bill Curtiss with 56.

Jim Fluarty and Bob Chitwood came in third with a score of 60.


Pagosa Springs Recreation

Parents, talk to your child about steroids

By Myles Gabel

SUN Columnist

Many things have been said or are in the news concerning steroids. As you read the sports pages, Sports Illustrated or other sports news, please make time to talk to your young athletes about what you are reading concerning "steroids."

Athletes, whether they are young or old, professional or amateur, have always looked to gain an advantage over their opponents. The desire for an "edge" exists in all sports, at all levels of play. Tell your children that successful athletes rely on practice and hard work to increase their skill, speed, power, and ability.

Make sure your children know, however, that some athletes resort to drugs to improve their performance on the field or the court. Unfortunately steroids are all around us, not just at the professional level. High school and even middle school students are using steroids to gain an edge, improve their skill level, or become more athletic. Steroid use is not limited to males. More and more females are putting themselves at risk by using these drugs. It is important to know that using anabolic steroids not only is illegal, but it also can have serious side effects.

What are steroids?

Anabolic steroids are powerful drugs that many people take in high doses to boost athletic performance. Anabolic means, "building body tissue." Anabolic steroids help build muscle tissue and increase body mass by acting like the body's natural male hormone, testosterone. Anabolic steroids are the ones abused by athletes and others who want a shortcut to becoming bigger and stronger.

Most major professional and amateur athletic organizations have banned steroids for use by their athletes.

Tell your children that steroids will not make them a better athlete. Steroids cannot improve an athlete's agility or skill. Many factors help determine athletic ability, including genetics, body size, age, sex, diet, and how hard the athlete trains. It is clear that the medical dangers of steroid use far outweigh the advantage of gains in strength or muscle mass. Also, high school and middle school students and athletes need to be aware of the effect steroids have on your natural growth. Steroids have been shown to stop their natural growth too soon.

Success in sports takes talent, skill, and most of all, practice and hard work. Using steroids is a form of cheating and interferes with fair competition. More importantly, they are dangerous to your health. There are many healthy ways to increase your strength or improve your appearance. If you are serious about your sport and your health, keep the following tips in mind:

Train safely, without using drugs. Eat a healthy diet. Get plenty of rest. Set realistic goals and be proud of yourself when you reach them.

Seek out training supervision, coaching, and advice from a reliable professional. Avoid injuries by playing safely and using protective gear. Talk to your doctor about nutrition, your health, preventing injury, and safe ways to gain strength.

If you know or your children know of anyone using steroids, get them help. Share this information with friends and teammates. Take a stand against the use of steroids and other drugs. Truly successful athletes combine their natural abilities with hard work to win. There is no quick and easy way to become the best.


National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and National Clearinghouse for Alcohol and Drug Information (NCADI)

Swap, don't buy

Tired of buying another pair of cleats or shin guards?

Then come to the "Cleat and Shin Guard Swap" 4 p.m. Monday, Aug. 22 at the elementary school soccer fields.

How does this work, you wonder? First clean as best you can all unwanted cleats and shin guards and place them inside a bag along with your name and phone number. Take this bag to a drop location between today and Aug 21. Place in drop box and you will be "credited" for the number of pairs you drop. On swap day, you will be allowed to shop for the same number of items that you donated. There will be a $2.50 charge for taking a pair over your "credited" amount and/or a $2.50 "credit" for taking less then what you donated.

Drop locations: Community United Methodist Church on Lewis Street or Shell Gas Station — U.S 160 and N. Pagosa Boulevard. If you have additional questions concerning the "Cleat and Shin Guard Swap," call Carrie, 264-9042, Lisa, 264-2730 or the Pagosa Springs Recreation Department.

Youth soccer

Youth soccer signups ended on July 29. If you would still like your child to play during the 2005 Youth Soccer season you must come to Town Hall and put your child on our waiting list. The 2005 Youth Soccer Season is starting earlier than in past years beginning with opening games scheduled Aug. 22. The season will only run through the first week of October due to the cold weather and less sunlight. Call the Recreation Department with any questions: 264-4151, Ext. 232

Coaches needed

Coaches for all age groups are needed for the 2005 soccer season. No previous experience necessary, we will provide you with all the information and coaching cues needed. Contact Myles Gabel at 264-4151 if interested.

Adult volleyball

Anyone interested in playing 4- person coed adult indoor volleyball, please attend an informational meeting 6 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 18 in Town Hall.

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 and going to the Parks and Recreation link. All schedules and upcoming events are updated every Monday morning.

Need more data?

For any questions, concerns or additional information about any of the Pagosa Springs Recreation Department Adult or Youth Sports Programs, please contact: Myles Gabel, Recreation Supervisor at 264-4151, Ext. 232


Pagosa Springs Parks

Young riders outgrew the BMX track

By Joe Lister Jr.

SUN Columnist

One of the main jobs of the Parks and Recreation Department for Pagosa Springs, as a whole, is to plan, maintain, program, and build new facilities.

Our master plans are helped out a great deal by public input, either by surveys, or by our end-of-season evaluations, or by letters to the department with ideas from the various user groups.

When we get involved with a with a survey group, we try to give as many angles to political problems, user groups, maintenance issues, and weather so we can facilitate a project without endangering or interfering with another user group.

Through the years we have gone through many changes, and trends. For instance, the a very active group of young riders and parents banded together to help Pagosa Springs apply for and receive a GoCo grant fro the building of the BMX track. Enthusiasm and energy level was great. In my opinion, by the time we completed the park, the young riders were now driving cars, and "big air" and "street freestyle" riding was in. Our BMX park never really saw the use, per amount of hours put into the park.

The skate board ramps, on the other hand, have seen great results, and on any given day you can have as many as 50 people enjoying different aspects of South Park. When we approached the South Park Board - Clifford Lucero, John Perea, and Mark Bergon - on the idea of utilizing the south end of the basketball courts for a temporary skate park, we had no trouble convincing them that there was a need for the skate improvements at the site.

We thought a skate park would be in phase one of the sports complex. However with the cost projections coming in a lot higher than expected, we have scaled down Phase One. We do have plans to design and hopefully build a skate park on town owned property near the high school.

The Town Board has agreed in principle to move Seeds of Learning to the southeast corner of South Pagosa Park. We are currently planning some renovations to the park to make it more accessible to the public, with plans for a toddler park, t-ball area, and toddler soccer area. All turf area can be used for lawn volleyball, badminton, or just picnic area.

Anyone wishing to get involved in some of the changes or voice their opinion on the park are asked to call me at 970-264-4151, Ext. 231.

Fall planning

With everyone winding down their summer activities, the Parks and Recreation Department is gearing up for the fall season which includes youth soccer, adult flag football passing league, co-ed volleyball, co-ed soccer, Four Corners Folk Festival, Color Fest, and patching up after a fast and furious summer of activities.

With a full schedule of junior high and high school football, trying to schedule our activities has been a nightmare. Hopefully with the addition of the turf area for soccer and youth baseball/ softball, we may be able to add some new fall sports and activities in the future.



The next wave breaks

As more development occurs in Pagosa Country, as more people of all types move here, the character of the town alters. Lately those alterations - economic, social and physical - have shaken many old-timers. The pace of change has surprised the most cynical of we native Coloradans, most of whom are accustomed to the parade of change that has characterized our state for a very long time.

The business community has undergone significant expansion and change during the last couple decades in terms of its members and the kinds of goods and services offered. For those of us who reflect on at least a couple decades in Pagosa Country a review of recently opened shops and restaurants is an eye-opening experience. A number of business interests, several of them important on a regional or national scale, have relocated and are doing landmark trade. The number of construction companies and the types of dwellings and commercial structures being built have bloomed, as has the price of those buildings. Sales of homes and land have gone off the charts.

This change has been like a wave. And we sense the chance another, richer wave is to soon to break.

Following a trip to last Saturday's music in the Mountains performance at BootJack Ranch, the fact our cultural climate has changed is more obvious than ever. There, in the company of more than 300 people, we listened to a world-class pianist work with a wonderful orchestra, producing music our host accurately defined as "a blessing."

After the concert, a fellow spectator asked: "Did you ever think you would do something like this in Pagosa?"

No, not 19 years ago. But our cultural life is catching up with the physical and economic expansion, and what will come is anyone's guess.

The cultural/arts bar has been raised. Perhaps the first event to raise that bar is now approaching its tenth anniversary. The Four Corners Folk Festival has drawn world-class acts to its stage for a decade and continues to improve, taking its rightful place as one of the notable festivals in the nation. With it, Pagosa Country ascends a cultural ladder.

We like to speculate on what additions will be made to our cultural community. Our expanded library comes to mind, There are several galleries in town and we await the arrival of contemporary art establishments to add to the fine traditional establishments in place. Recent efforts at Shy Rabbit Studio are an energetic addition to the local scene with more promised in the near future.

The Pagosa Springs Music Boosters have provided wonderful entertainment with homegrown musical productions. We anticipate the arrival or creation of a professional theater company to supplement local amateur efforts, perhaps a company similar to one so successful in Creede. It can happen here - there are now a handful of trained, professional theater people in the area and more are sure to arrive. If they are able to coordinate efforts, the results could be magical. A theater space, even a small one, given over to professional productions, would be another step up for us.

Why be concerned about this aspect of development in Pagosa Country? Because the cultural climate of a community is a signal of its nature, a pulse monitored to determine the overall character of a place. While there are numerous artistic flat spots in the regional map - some close by - it is a fact that significant cultural communities can grow here in the Southwest. Taos and Santa Fe stand as examples, each reflecting a character peculiar to its origins.

The nature of Pagosa Country is still to be determined, with many people and interests still barely settled here. With what is occurring, it seems the cultural character of this place could develop quite rapidly into something wonderful. We will wait and watch and hope for the best.

Karl Isberg


Pacing Pagosa

Mystery ad hides Rockies efforts

By Richard Walter

SUN Columnist

Memo: To Fox Sports Net and ESPN

From: The few fans the Rockies have left

Topic: The itinerant advertisement that has been blocking views and interviews of players; You know, the one that pops up at the most inopportune moments during live action with a spiel to a stack of money about rescuing your credit.

Once would be all right, maybe twice over a long road trip where you're not dealing with your regular programmers.

But 37 times in a three-day stand in San Francisco?

Fans back home got to see the introduction of new shortstop Adam Quintanilla, but no more of your interview. Later, when he strode to the plate for the first time as a Rockie, we got to see the swing and the ball rising toward center field. But we never knew it was a triple, until the inning was over. The commercial had blanked it out.

The timing for this sneak attack on viewers is uncanny. Nearly every one of those 37 times it was on during a Rockies game it was popped in at a key moment in the action. No reason given. Your broadcasters may not even see what's showing on the home viewers' screen as they track the action.

Some people want me to believe the ad placement was done by the local provider, U.S. Cable.

At first, with my luck record, I thought my TV set had been singled out for the repeated chance to go straight creditwise. I even felt a pang about an unpaid 10-cent loan I got from a co-worker months ago.

But then others began talking about the advertisement (or ongoing series if you prefer) and soon I realized we had a full-fledged mystery on our hands.

Attempts to call your Denver offices for information about how we can fight back against this "fool's folly" intrusion in our daily dose of "hurt me, please hurt me," were foiled by a telephone system which first informed me your network(s) do not exist.

When an operator deigned to look in the book, she found a number I should try. "I think they'll know what you want," she said.

Called the number. Disconnected. Probably by the guy standing in front of the blue background challenging victims of excessive debt to use his firm's services to escape the sin.

After all, if his commercials can flit in and out of scheduling at will, and he can save people all this money, the Rockies network may be the exact place for him to appear ... BUT NOT 37 TIMES IN THREE DAYS???

Hey, wait a minute.

The Rockies are on a two of three roll ... stopped the Giants twice in their own park with some of those new guys contributing mightily to the attack - even if we didn't get to see many of the scoring plays. Same record in Arizona.

We Rockies may have a secret weapon of our own here. The mystery commercial may be the impetus for recovering of a season.

No pennant this time, but look how we came back after the commercial. Can't that be a good omen?

Cancel memo: Retain two seats for 2006 World Series in Denver.




90 years ago

Taken from SUN files of August 13, 1915

The Men's Gospel Team will hold a meeting at Chromo Sunday, August 15. If it should rain too hard it will be held the next Sunday. If all will help a little, even just to attend, we can get nearer to each other and nearer to Christ.

The excavating for the basement of our new school house has begun. The cement work will be commenced in a few days.

The starting of our school will be delayed until the 20th of September on account of our new building not being completed before that date.

The Sparks Hdw. Co. reports an exceptionally good year on farming implements, much better than last year, which is a sure criterion of the improved agricultural conditions in the county.


75 years ago

Taken from SUN files of August 15, 1930

All Hoosiers and their friends are hereby notified that the annual meeting and picnic of Archuleta County Hoosiers will be held in the park in Pagosa Springs on Sunday, August 24th.

I am prepared to do paper hanging and interior painting. Good work guaranteed; a trial will convince. Ben Baldwin.

Abner J. Lewis, old time mayor and barber of Pagosa Springs, is now located at Whitlow, Calif., and anxious to hear from old friends.

Miss Matilde Martinez, who for the past year has been employed at a Santa Fe store, came up from that city last week to spend her vacation at the home of her parents, Mr. and Mrs. J.T. Martinez.


50 years ago

Taken from SUN files of August 11, 1955

Two teenage boys are lodged in the county jail this week after they stole and wrecked a car belonging to G.A. Alley. One of the boys was found in the wrecked car and the other was picked up near the Piedra bridge. The two boys took the car about midnight from in front of the school house where Mr. Alley was attending a school board meeting. In an apparent attempt to get out of town before being observed, they drove down the Main Street to the water plant and then turned north. They left the road and hit the culvert on Rumbaugh Creek. Both were injured in the accident, one severely, and was apprehended as he attempted to get away from the car. He suffered a cut throat that very nearly severed the artery.


25 years ago

Taken from SUN files of August 14, 1980

The town of Pagosa Springs is having difficulty in maintaining the supply of water that is presently being used, Water Commissioner Modesto Montoya said this week. A break in the main supply line took three days to repair and during that time the reserve storage supply became somewhat depleted. The system has not been able to transport enough water to build the storage back to needed levels. As a result it may be necessary to place watering restriction into effect or cut off outside users.

Jeannine Shahan's Grand Champion steer weighing 1,270 pounds was purchased by the Citizens Bank of Pagosa Springs for $3.70 per pound. The Reserve Grand Champion steer weighing 1,025 pounds and shown by Lannette Shahan sold for $2.00 per pound.



On call 24/7, 30 years

By Sarah Smith

SUN Intern

With no hospital in town, we sometimes think our issues with emergency medical services in Pagosa are tough, but 71-year-old Ron Bamrick remembers times that were tougher.

Bamrick, who recently retired after thirty years, was a member of the first graduating class of local EMTs in 1975, the very first to be trained in advanced first aid techniques in the Pagosa area. At that time, there were no emergency medical services in the area.

"No one knew what an EMT was," said Bamrick. "There was a TV program on at the time about a paramedic who was saving the world once a week, but that was it."

Since Bamrick was willing to be on call for the Chromo area, he was accepted to begin training to become an EMT in 1974.

"I've virtually been on call for 30 years, 24 hours a day," he said. "You don't look at it that way, though."

Bamrick said he was prompted to join the EMS because it was something he'd always wanted to do.

"We did it because we wanted to, not to get paid or a pat on the back."

But Bamrick also wanted to become an EMT because there was no type of emergency medical assistance in the area.

"It was a necessary thing to do. We had nothing in Archuleta County. If you got hurt, you were in trouble."

Bamrick knew first-hand how badly the area needed EMS. Before emergency medical assistance came to Archuleta County, Bamrick's brother-in-law was severely injured in a car accident.

"The Mounted Rangers picked him up and drove like hell to Durango," he said, "but he didn't make it. He didn't make it because there was nothing here."

So Bamrick and his fellow newly-licensed EMTs began work in Archuleta County, helping sustain those in need of emergency medical assistance long enough to get them to the hospital in Durango.

"My first jump kit was a roll of tape and a box of Kotex," said Bamrick. "We improvised."

Many improvisations were certainly made while the EMS program was still in its infancy. For example, since there was not enough money for an ambulance, Bamrick's car served as the emergency vehicle for years.

Of course, as the medical field progressed, the EMS service received new equipment. Bamrick said he has seen an enormous amount of advances in the medical equipment invented; however, he has not forgotten what it was like without the "fancy tools and equipment."

Bamrick said the amount of training and schooling to become an EMT has also advanced significantly in the past thirty years. Yet he feels that there are some things that no amount of training can teach.

"I've seen any kind of accident you can imagine, and none of it was taught in school," he said. "In school, they told us, you have two things with you when you go out there: your head and your hands. Use them."

One thing Bamrick said he still finds amazing is how much the town supported the EMTs when they first started.

One example of this support is his car: he has abandoned his car in places all over the county after being picked up by the ambulance. He recalled one instance when he was pulling out of a driveway downtown when an ambulance drove up beside him. The ambulance was carrying a 15-year-old girl who was suffering from complications from an ectopic pregnacy.

"She was bleeding to death," said Bamrick, "and I was the only person who knew how to run an IV."

So Bamrick accompanied the ambulance to Durango, leaving his car halfway in the street and halfway in the driveway with the door wide open and the keys inside.

When Bamrick returned three hours later, his car was exactly where he'd left it.

"Everyone knew whose car it was," he said. "Nobody ever touched it." His car was never robbed or stolen. The most anyone ever did was close the door for him.

"Things like that were important," he said. "People cooperated with us. The local businesses cooperated with us. If a volunteer EMT ever needed to leave work, they'd let him go. I don't know if that would happen nowadays."

Things have certainly changed since Bamrick first became an EMT. After losing a patient, the support Bamrick once received from his wife and a cup of tea is now given by an incident commander. His roll of tape and box of Kotex has evolved into thousands of dollars of high-tech medical equipment.

But one thing has not changed: the need for emergency medical services in Pagosa. The work EMTs do in Pagosa is just as vital today as it was thirty years ago.

"It's a necessary thing," said Bamrick.

Bamrick is modest about the service he has given to the county. And while he and the other EMTs who brought emergency medical assistance to Pagosa did a "necessary thing," they also did a remarkable thing. They helped usher in a new standard of medical care in Pagosa.

And for Bamrick, the thirty years of EMT work, while at times arduous and exhausting, definitely had its perks.

"I helped two people with broken backs to the point where they're walking today. It kinda makes it worthwhile."


Donations sought for child with rare

disease, reactions

Coltin Chavez, 4-year-old son of Jennifer and Ronnie Chavez, has been diagnosed with epileptic encephalopathy and experienced allergic reactions to seizure medications.

As a result, both he and his mother were flown to Children's Hospital in Denver by Flight for Life to receive emergency medical care for seizure clusters.

Donations to offset medical expenses can be made with Wells Fargo Bank, c/o Coltin Chavez.


Students can register by appointment

Monday and Tuesday

Any new students who have not registered for the 2005-2006 school year at Pagosa Springs High School can do so 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday and Tuesday.

Registration is done on an appointment basis. At that time you will also receive your class schedule.

Please reserve your time-slot by calling the high school secretary at 264-2231, anytime.

You must also have your immunization records to begin school. Previous academic records would also be helpful.


Community College fall registration set;

classes begin Aug. 22

Registration for the fall semester is underway at Pueblo Community College's Southwest Center.

Classes such as English composition, speech, history and sociology begin Aug. 22 in Pagosa Springs. Financial aid is available for qualified students.

To learn more, call the Durango office at 247-2929 or check the Web at


Pagosa's Past

Ute attack at Meeker frayed nerves

of soldiers in Ignacio agency

By John M. Motter

PREVIEW Columnist

In late September of 1879, Northern Utes struck hard against the Indian Agency at Meeker. Agent Nathan Meeker and others were killed and many of the agency white women, including Meeker's wife, taken captive.

An Army column commanded by Maj. Thornburgh was pinned down on Milk Creek a few miles north of Meeker. Co. "D", 9th Cavalry, the so-called Buffalo Soldiers commanded by Capt. Dodge and stationed at Fort Lewis in Pagosa Springs, penetrated the encirclement, but was, in turn, pinned down. Finally, a larger group of troops from Wyoming accomplished the rescue.

Needless to say, Army troops stationed in Colorado were nervous. The settlers were plain scared. In nearby Animas City (now Durango) Deputy Sheriff Hefferman contacted Fort Lewis in Pagosa Springs. Hefferman wanted troops and barring that, rifles and ammunition. In response, troops were sent to Animas City, from various points, but not from Fort Lewis.

This letter from Fort Lewis dated Oct. 9 and addressed to the Assistant Adjutant General "In the Field," gives us a feel for what was happening in the Animas City/Pagosa Springs area during those critical days.

"The two communications (by courier, there was no telephone or telegraph service in Pagosa Springs at the time ... Motter) of 8th Inst. received this a.m. In reply to the first, I have the honor to state that three six-mule teams left this morning to meet Maj. Hough. They were sent to comply with note of District Commander received last evening per Mr. Cooper.

"In reply to second letter this is the latest on Indian matters in vicinity of Agency (Ignacio). On Tuesday last the Indians concentrated at the Agency to receive rations. On Wednesday, the regular issue day: some of them were under the influence of liquor and behaved badly toward employees though doing no harm. Mr. Page "agent" was out on Tuesday and left Animas City for the Agency with the intention of withdrawing employees as noted in letter of Mr. Beaumont (sp?) forwarded to you last Wednesday. A party of twenty cattlemen went to Agency and remained two days as a means of protection to whites there. A company of 40 men raised at Pinos River were also near there watching but withdrew Tuesday being satisfied with peaceable aspect of affairs. Mr. Charles King came over last evening from Pinos River and reports all quiet, citizens are organized but lack ammunition; unreliable parties start rumors of very (...?...) construction which are rapidly disproven. From 500 to 600 Indians reported present on issue day. They wanted rations for families absent which on being refused made them angry. They also wanted annuities to be issued which were refused. Ignacio and Aguilar (Chiefs) were reported present, and one source states some Utes from the North also at Agency. Mr. Hefferman at Animas City states Indians are building a trail a few miles south of that town; direction in which trail leads not stated. As some of the Indians were absent from reservation on Wednesday (issue day), it is probable they have gone North. Settlers West are naturally very anxious on subject, but the arrival of the troops of which the people have been informed will allay fears.

"Some of the Indians are camped near Stollsteimer's Creek 11 miles west of here (Pagosa Springs) and balance either at Agency or out hunting."


Pagosa Sky Watch

Friday a peak viewing night for the Perseids

James Robinson

Staff Writer

Moon: The moon tonight will be waxing crescent. According to data from the U.S. Naval Observatory Astronomical Observations Department, 36 percent of the moon's visible surface will be illuminated. This moon's visible surface will increase as the weekend progresses, but because of moonrise and moonset times, the moon won't prove problematic for viewing the annual Perseid meteor shower.

On Friday, which is one of the peak viewing days for the shower; the moon will rise in the early afternoon and will set just before midnight. That means, during the best viewing hours between 1 a.m. and sunrise, the sky will be at its darkest, allowing for prime sky watching conditions.

While the Perseids are probably the stars of the weekend's celestial show, there are many other objects to see, starting just after sunset on Friday.

On this evening, if you have an unobstructed view of the western horizon just after sunset, you can witness a particularly fine lineup of planets, stars and the moon. Starting at a point almost due west, is the planet Venus — the first and brightest object of the five-object lineup. Venus is the lowest object on the horizon and can be used as a starting point to locate the other items in the lineup.

From Venus, shift your gaze left, (southwest) about 20 degrees, or the width of two hands held at arm's length with the night sky as a backdrop. There you will find the planet Jupiter. Jupiter is also quite bright, but will not outshine Venus.

Moving left again, about 10 degrees, or the width of one hand held at arm's length with the night sky as a backdrop, you will find Spica, alpha Virginis, the brightest star in the constellation Virgo. Continue in the same direction, and next along the route lies the moon, which is almost in its' first quarter.

Beyond the moon, and left again about another 20 degrees, lies a bright red object, alpha Scorpii or Antares, the heart of the constellation Scorpius.

While continuing to look west, shift your gaze back to Jupiter and Spica. From there, travel up about 30 or 40 degrees to another bright, reddish-orange object. This is the star Arcturus, alpha Bootis, the dominant star of the constellation Bootes and the fourth brightest star in the sky.

Consider the sunset, celestial lineup the opening act of a truly stellar late night show — the Perseid meteor shower. Although you will need to stay up far past sunset to enjoy the meteor shower, if skies are clear, it should be a tremendous show and well worth the effort.

At their most basic, meteors are bits of celestial debris that rip through the earth's atmosphere at very high speeds — about 5 to 50 miles per second. The friction created by their high-speed passage through the atmosphere generates tremendous heat. Under these circumstances, the smaller bits, dust or pebble sized pieces, called meteoroids, vaporize in mid flight. Sometimes a larger piece of debris survives the trip and crashes to the earth's surface. This larger object is called a meteorite.

Many skywatchers new to meteor watching wonder why meteors are more prolific at certain times of the year than others. Comets are the answer. While a comet travels through space on a long elliptical orbit, it constantly loses dust and debris from its core. The result is a long trail of celestial crud left to mark the comet's passage. A meteor shower occurs when the earth, on its own orbit, passes through this trail of dust and debris. Because both the earth and comets have predictable orbital periods, astronomers can calculate when these two paths will cross. In the case of the Perseids, the earth is passing through the debris left behind the comet Swift-Tuttle. When the earth crosses Swift-Tuttle's orbital path, the debris that enters our atmosphere is called a meteor shower.

Meteor showers appear to originate in a particular part of the night sky. With the Perseids, the point of origin lies near the constellation Perseus. Astronomers call this point of origin the radiant, and meteor showers are named according to the constellation that provides the radiant point. The meteors seen travelling from this point of origin are called shower meteors. But you might also find meteors racing across the sky seemingly out of nowhere. These are called non-shower meteors and a few can be observed virtually any night of the year.

In addition to the shower, non-shower nomenclature, meteors can be named for their aerial acrobatics or visual traits. Meteors appear blue, white, green, yellow, orange and even red. A meteor that appears brighter than other objects in the sky is called a fireball. The extreme speed of a fireball makes it appear much closer to the earth than it really is. Some meteors explode near the end of their flight and those are called bolides.

Although advanced meteor watching can get fairly technical, it's not necessary to get caught up in all the terms and jargon, or even to know the radiant, to enjoy a meteor shower.

The key to enjoying the shower is to head out during prime viewing hours. The Perseids will be at their best from after midnight until just before dawn. Secondly, find an area with unobstructed views and dark skies. Third, make yourself comfortable. Bring a reclining lawn or camping chair, sleeping pad, blanket or sleeping bag so you can stay out late and be comfortable without having to twist your neck or stand all evening. Bring along a few friends, a thermos of hot cocoa or coffee, and enjoy the show.



Date High Low Precip
Depth Moisture











































Forecasters maintain two-weeks 'on target'

By Richard Walter

Staff Writer

Whatever else you may have to say about professional weather forecasters, you have to admit they've been more right than wrong with the monsoon calls.

Of course it is the monsoon season, but even so, the forecasters in Grand Junction have been right on for the last two weeks.

Unfortunately, because the local weather observer is vacationing, we do not have rainfall totals for the past week - except for Thursday and Friday when precipitation totaled .14 and .30 inches, respectively. For the month, through Friday, the total rainfall has been .58.

There are those, however, who will tell much more fell at the fairgrounds during the County Fair last weekend.

If the forecasters hold their success percentage, you can still expect to see a lot of rain daily for a week.

Today, for example, the call for a 40 percent chance of precipitation and a high of 83. Tonight the percentage holds and the low is expected at 52.

On Friday, the percentage chance of rain drops to 30 with a much lower daytime high - 78. Tonight's expectation is for only a 20 percent chance of showers and a low of 51.

Saturday will warm to 81 with the percent chance of rain holding at 30 and for Saturday night, the call is for only a "slight" chance of late evening showers and a low of 53.

For the first time in the period, the words "partly sunny" appear in the forecast for Sunday, with a chance of light thundershowers in the evening. The daytime high is expected to be 78 and the overnight low 47.

Monday continues the "partly" forecast, changing the word sunny to cloudy, with a high of 83 and an overnight low of 49 under clearing skies.

Tuesday's call is partly cloudy with a high of 83.

Area rivers are declining rapidly, but water gauge readings still are not available as the state recalibrates equipment during the low water stages.

Navajo Lake, which takes most of the county runoff, stood Monday morning at 6,074.90 surface elevation and held 1,549,794 acre feet of water. Inflow was measured at 810 cubic feet per second and outflow at 655 cfs.