May 25, 2006

Front Page

County adopts new land use code, zoning plan

By James Robinson

Staff Writer

With Tuesday's unanimous board of county commissioners' approval, Archuleta County has a new land use code and zoning plan that will divide the county into eight zoning districts.

The approval of the resolution instituting the code came without opposition during the public hearing, and many in the audience celebrated the county's efforts with a standing ovation, calling adoption of the new code an historic achievement.

Mark Weiler, president of Parelli Natural Horsemanship, spoke for many in the audience when he likened the land use code drafting and adoption process to the drafting of the U.S. Constitution, saying that creating the new code represented the culmination of tremendous, long-term effort. He added that although no document is perfect, the new code gives the county a firm foundation on which to build.

And building on the foundation laid by the new land use code is one of the tenets written into the resolution formalizing adoption of the land use document.

According to the resolution, the code will be revisited yearly in order to make adjustments as situations change or needs arise.

The first revision session is scheduled for January 2007.

In his presentation to the board, Martin Landers, point man for the project from the land use consulting firm HNTB Corporation, explained much of the new code was built from the philosophies, and 39 action items, contained in the Archuleta County Community Plan adopted in 2001.

"The first thing I'd like to say is that the document has a direct relationship with the community plan that was adopted in 2001," Landers said.

In addition, Landers said much of the new code was built from the county's most recent land use regulations, and that much of the work involved restructuring the old regulations and providing updates where necessary.

Two key updates include an extensive overhaul of county sign regulations and an entirely new section on sand, soil and gravel mining and oil and gas development.

Furthermore, the code details the county's land use review process; zoning regulations and definitions of the eight zoning districts; zoning district standards and overlay district standards; definitions and purposes of the various overlay districts; subdivision regulations; subdivision design standards; environmental, infrastructure and site development standards; a section on dedications, guarantees and title restrictions and floodplain regulations.

Missing from the document is a section regarding junk or other nuisance items and this was a point of concern brought forth by Karen Aspin and Cindy Gustafson during the public comment session.

According to Gerald Dahl, attorney for HNTB and a key player in the drafting of the code, the section was originally included, but later removed following a joint decision by the board of county commissioners and the Archuleta County Planning Commission.

"Taking it out of the land use code was not a signal that this is not an important issue," Dahl said.

However, Dahl explained, although it is within the county's realm to legislate regarding junk, he said many counties deal with such issues in separate, stand alone legislation apart from a land use code.

The commissioners were receptive to making the drafting of a junk/nuisance ordinance a top priority.

The second area that has drawn public concern, although it was not articulated during Tuesday's meeting, was the land use code's incorporation of scenic overlay districts - sometimes called scenic easements. However, during the May 8 planning commission and board of county commissioners joint work session, Landers said scenic overlays and land preservation plans are voluntary programs, and interim Director of County Development David Alvord said that assertion remains in the final draft of the document.

The new code details a number of land and open space preservation methods.

With the land use code passed and the regulations in place, the next step requires creating an official county zoning map.

Alvord called this next step in the process the "Zoning Transition Program," and Alvord explained the process provides a method and a formula for mapping the county into the eight zoning districts, ultimately creating the official zoning map. Alvord said creating the zoning map is a crucial step in implementing the county's revised land use regulations.

Many county staff, including County Administrator Bob Campbell, say that while much work is behind them, the Zoning Transition Program present a number of formidable challenges, including the potential for public outcry, as individual county parcels are placed on the official zoning map.

Key upcoming dates in the Zoning Transition Program include a series of public information meetings scheduled for June or early July in Pagosa Springs, Aspen Springs, Chromo and Arboles, followed by a joint board of county commissioners and planning commission work session on July 19, with an adoption hearing scheduled for August 15.

The complete land use code will be available online by next week, and an outline of the Zoning Transition Program can be read by visiting the county on the Web at

High speed chase results in crash, suspect sought

By Chuck McGuire

Staff Writer

A speeding motorcyclist led Archuleta County Undersheriff Bob Grandchamp and deputies on a dangerous high-speed chase Tuesday afternoon, resulting in a damaged county vehicle and an ongoing investigation. By press time, the suspect remained at large.

At approximately 5:17 p.m., Grandchamp observed a black motorcycle traveling north on North Pagosa Boulevard at a fast clip. After pacing the vehicle and estimating its speed at between 65 and 70 mph, Grandchamp turned on lights and siren and gave chase.

The driver of the motorcycle, described only as a male wearing blue jeans, a black jacket and black helmet, continued north through the Pagosa Lakes residential areas, then turned southeast on a winding County Road 600, also known as Piedra Road.

As speeds exceeded 100 mph, Grandchamp became concerned for public safety and called off the chase. However, when he spotted the suspect hiding in a side cul-de-sac, he attempted to block the biker's escape route, but the suspect managed to elude him and proceed southeast on Piedra.

At that point, Deputy Brian Saltzman joined the pursuit, again reaching high speeds. Saltzman eventually lost control of his vehicle just south of Mission Drive, crashed into a steep road embankment, and came to rest in the upright position. He was soon transported by Emergency Medical Services ambulance to Mercy Medical Center in Durango, where he was treated for minor injuries, and later released.

Investigating the crash scene, Colorado State Patrol Trooper C.M. Jones later determined that Saltzman skidded through a tight reverse curve, overcorrected and lost control. He estimated Saltzman's speed at 54 mph at the time of the accident.

In the meantime, sightings immediately following the incident placed the motorcyclist in the Pagosa In The Pines subdivision between the Pagosa Springs Golf Club and Stevens Field. By press time, officers continued searching for the suspect, but couldn't say whether the motorcycle was registered locally or in another county. Grandchamp only described the cycle as a black "street bike," bearing a temporary Colorado registration.

By Wednesday afternoon, Grandchamp said the department was following several promising leads in the investigation, and expected an arrest within a week. He also said if, and when, a suspect is apprehended, he will face a minimum charge of felony eluding.

Saltzman, meanwhile, is on temporary leave for a few days, to allow full recovery from his injuries, before he returns to duty.

River restoration in holding pattern

By James Robinson

Staff Writer

With the targeted construction start date come and gone, phase two of the town's River Restoration Project is locked into a holding pattern while the town and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers seek ways to resolve their differences.

The two agencies are seeking a meeting in mid-June.

Under the original plan, the town had anticipated obtaining a permit from the Corps last fall, with river work to begin in December of 2005, but the two agencies clashed over the issue of using grout in constructing the proposed in-stream structures and for hard bank stabilization.

Ultimately, following a series of correspondences, the two agencies became locked in a stalemate, with the town essentially committed to a grout-based project and the Corps refusing a permit for the town's project as presented, but expressing a willingness to discuss permittable alternatives.

As proposed, the town's project focuses on modifying the San Juan River between the Hot Springs Boulevard bridge and the Apache Street bridge. The upper portion of the project area would focus primarily on increasing white water recreation opportunities through the use of grout-stabilized U-drop structures.

The lower portion of the project area, from the McCabe Creek inlet to the Apache Street bridge, would involve placement of riparian vegetation along the riverbank and in-stream random boulder clusters, with no grout to be used for the structures below McCabe Creek.

Although the town's revised plan calls for less grout than in the original submittal, Kara Hellige of the Corps said her agency still has concerns over the effect of grout on fish and macro invertebrate migration and habitat, river hydrology, and its impact on the riverbank and its potential to increase the flood stage.

Hellige explained that a grout-based structure essentially works like a dam and blocks the passage of sediment and river gravel. The result, she said, causes the streambed gradient above the structure to decrease or flatten as it fills with silt or cobbles, thus creating a meandering river channel that is more prone to flooding.

She said the U-drop structure installed by the town last March is a prime example of the effect, and the Corps has noted an accumulation of sediment and river cobbles along the riverbank near the chamber of commerce building.

The second impact of grout-based structures Hellige said, is that they cause a "super critical velocity." With the grout creating a dam-like effect, Hellige said the current is forced into a narrow channel causing greater stress along the banks which leads to further bank erosion. Hellige added that grout-based structures require grout-based bank stabilization to mitigate riverbank degradation.

As the Corps preferred alternative to the town plan, the agency has recommended keeping grout work to an absolute minimum for both the in-stream structures and any bank stabilization work.

Rather than relying on grout to stabilize the in-stream structures, Hellige said the Corps is suggesting using an arch-shaped design where a keystone is keyed into the river bed to provide structural integrity, and subsequent rocks along the arch are placed at slightly higher elevations with the outside rocks keyed into the riverbank at bank-full elevation.

Hellige said the design would allow natural river hydrology to run its course, would decrease pressure on the river banks, would allow flow through of sediment and movement of fish and macro invertebrates.

She said the Corps would not design the structures and added that the Colorado Division of Wildlife has used non-grouted structures with success on numerous river projects.

The town has long argued that their project has faced undue scrutiny from the Corps, and questions why grout has been permitted by the agency on other river projects.

Hellige said, each river is a different animal with unique conditions, and refutes the town's assertions.

At present, and following an environmental assessment, the Corps believes the town's proposed project is not the "least environmentally damaging practicable alternative."

According to Hellige, if the town persists with the permit process with the project as proposed, she will have to recommend denial of the project.

During their June meeting, the town and the Corps hope to work toward a compromise.

"The best case scenario is that we can come up with a resolution that is good for the river, good for recreation and good for the town," said Hellige.

Inside The Sun

Methodist Church offers Vacation Bible School

Community United Methodist Church will soon be transformed into an archaeological dig site where children from age 4 to those entering sixth grade next year, are invited to become Treasure Seekers at their summer Vacation Bible School, "Adventure of the Treasure Seekers: Exploring God's Promises."

The action begins June 12 and ends June 16, with sessions 8:30-11:30 a.m.

There will be daily "discovery digs" for children to explore the Scriptures and find God's promises. This program offers fun, interactive activities that combine the world of archaeology with the discovery of treasures in the Bible. Each day, children will take part in an actual dig and find treasures that remind them of the Bible story and God's promise for that day.

The children will also be involved in a mission project for Covenant Education Center, a Christian day care center in Shiprock, N.M., sing great Treasure Seekers tunes, play teamwork-building games, create some memorable crafts, enjoy tasty snacks and make many new friends.

Children and Youth Ministries Coordinator and VBS Director Janet Rainey says, "Adventure of the Treasure Seekers is an exciting way for kids to learn more about God's love in a way that brings the message to life. The archaeological dig is a great way to capture their imaginations and also draw the parallel of digging into the Bible to discover God's promises. We'll begin each day at the Big Dig with our theme characters, Dr. Ziggurat (or "Zig" for short) and Professor Whoo before heading out to experience some terrific activities led by a very talented team of volunteers. It's going to be an incredible amount of fun."

The entire community is invited to join Community United Methodist church at 8:30 a.m. June 12 to be a part of "Adventure of the Treasure Seekers."

Preregistration is encouraged (but not required) for planning adequate supplies and space.

For more information, call Janet Rainey or Joan Rodger at 264-5508.

Worthe Crouse - legendary driving force behind creation of San Juan Society Historical Museum

By Shari Pierce

Staff Writer

Teacher, innovator, doer, friend, writer, artist, son, father, husband, tireless. Just some of the words that could be used to describe Worthe Crouse - one of the driving forces behind the creation of the San Juan Historical Society Museum.

Some of the artwork and creations of Crouse are on display in the museum. Among these are a welded columbine, an elephant, coral, an anvil and one of the most popular items created by Crouse - a self portrait.

The Crouse family roots intertwine with the history of Archuleta County. Crouse's parents, George and Lulu Baldwin Crouse were married in 1898. George suffered with asthma. His condition worsened over the years and doctors told him he would live only six months more. The young couple decided to move to Colorado. George did not want to make the move, but Lulu wanted to be near her parents when her husband passed away. Her parents had moved to Colorado in 1900.

George and Lulu came to Colorado in a covered wagon with their two children and settled in Archuleta County about 1907. George's health rapidly improved. Son Worthe was born in 1915 just west of Pagosa Springs, at Sunetha.

Sunetha, in those days, was a loading depot for the train. Cattle, sheep and railroad ties were the most common items loaded as freight.

At age 5 it was time for Worthe to start school. His first school was the Frances School, down what is now Colo. 151. He lived there in the teacherage with his sister, Georgeanne, who was the new teacher for the Frances School.

When he was older, Worthe attended school in Pagosa Springs. He dropped out of school in 1933, just three weeks before graduation. Later, when Mr. Crouse himself became a vocational education teacher in the local school system, he always urged his students to stay in school and graduate. He strongly encouraged them to leave the school with a trade, so they could go out and find a job and earn a living.

Like many youngsters of the day, Crouse began working while still in school. In 1930, he was employed as the night man at Dunagan's Chevrolet Garage. He started out making $12 per week. His hours would generally be from 6 p.m. to 6 or 8 a.m. It was at the Dunagan Garage that Crouse learned the auto mechanic trade.

Crouse married his childhood friend, Cornelia Ford, Nov. 10, 1935. They would have two children, George and Marisha.

Crouse continued working at the Dunagan Garage until 1940. During his tenure at the garage, he learned to be a welder, mechanic, truck driver and machinist.

The Crouses opened their own shop in 1940 and operated it until 1942. At that time, they moved to Portland, Oregon. Crouse began working for Kaiser shipyards building ships and learning more about metal working and welding.

Following World War II, the Crouses returned to Pagosa Springs.

They purchased the old railroad depot and turned it into a shop and home. In 1946, they purchased property at the corner of North 7th Street and U.S. 160. They built the stone building, which is still on the property, to house their shop. The Crouses ran the shop until 1965 when they sold it to the Snow brothers.

Next Crouse went to work at the Job Corps camp. He worked as a maintenance man and taught a welding program for the Job Corps trainees. After five years there, the camp was closed.

The local school district approached him about teaching auto mechanics and welding to high school students. Arrangements were made to bus the students to the Job Corps facility on Piedra Road for classes. Thus, Crouse began his 13-year teaching career.

By this time, the Crouses again owned the welding shop at North 7th and U.S. 160. When the Job Corps camp closed, the students were bussed to Crouse's shop for classes. Later, the classes were moved to the school district's bus shop.

Crouse passed away in the 1990s, but his memory lives on in the lives of the students he touched, the art and projects he crafted, his involvement in the founding of the museum and in so many other ways.

A hand-polished anvil is on display at the museum along with other memorabilia inspired and touched by Crouse.

Gift shop

Be sure to visit the newly-expanded museum gift shop.

Members have carefully selected items which may be of particular interest to residents and visitors of Pagosa Country, including "Remembrances," a series of books, in its 11th year of publication, celebrating the people, places and history of Pagosa Springs and the surrounding area. The newest in the series, titled "Federal Forest Reserves," will be available this summer. The book series is compiled and published by the San Juan Historical Society, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization which also manages the museum. All proceeds from the sale of the books, and the nominal admission fee, are used toward museum operating expenses.

Monthly meetings

The San Juan Historical Society meets the first Thursday of each month at 6 p.m. Meetings in the summer are held at the museum and in the winter are held at the Chamber of Commerce Visitor's Center. Please join the society and help ensure the future of the museum.


Regular admission charges for the museum are $3 for adults, and $1 for children 6-12. Children under age 6 are admitted at no charge. Annual memberships are available at a fee of $15 for individuals, $25 for a family, $10 for a senior citizen, $50 for a contributor and $125 for a business. Membership benefits include admission to the museum for the season and a 10-percent discount on items purchased there.

Hours of operation

Museum hours Tuesday through Saturday are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The museum is located at the corner of Pagosa Street (U.S. 160) and First Street, next to the bridge on the east side of town.

Wells Fargo offers grants to non-profit groups

Grant applications are now being accepted for the 13th annual Wells Fargo Community Assistance Fund, according to Thomas W. Honig, regional president and chief executive officer for Wells Fargo in Colorado.

Applications, available at all Wells Fargo stores throughout the state, are due June 30.

Through the fund, Wells Fargo will contribute $260,000 to an estimated 200 qualified community-based non-profit organizations. The average grant ranges from $500 to $1,500. Eligible organizations must be certified 501c(3) and have an annual budget of $350,000 or less.

"We're extremely pleased to continue this 13-year tradition of helping organizations that work so hard and do so much to make Colorado a better place to live and work," Honig said. "The Wells Fargo Community Assistance Fund is a component of our overall philanthropic efforts. In 2005, we gave more than $4.5 million to community groups in our state."

For additional information, or to receive an application by mail, organizations should contact the Pagosa local Wells Fargo store.

The Wells Fargo Community Assistance Fund was started in 1993 to provide greatly needed support to small, nonprofit groups that don't have the resources to compete with larger organizations for community support dollars. Since its inception, approximately 2,400 grants totaling more than $2.75 million have been awarded.

Mid Act Rotary Club holds restaurant fund-raiser

By Joanne Irons

Special to The SUN

Recently, the Mid Act Rotary Club sponsored a fund-raiser at the Rose Restaurant in downtown Pagosa Springs to raise money for various club activities.

Students in fifth and sixth grades waited tables, washed dishes and worked with restaurant owner, Jerry Fankel.

Fourteen members of the club served family and friends at dinner and all the tip money went to the club. The menu was special and the funds were also. Reaching a total of $378.00 for the evening the club unanimously voted to donate some of the proceeds to the Kirk Zellner Fund. A classmate's father was seriously injured and the students wanted to show their support by making the donation.

Mid Act Rotary Club works with Pagosa Rotary Club at many functions, including trash pickup, Relay for Life, Fourth of July parade, events with seniors at Pine Ridge Extended Care Facility, and volunteering at community fairs and events.

The club meets once a week during the school year and once a month over the summer. Next year, youngsters in grades five to eight can join Mid Act Rotary Club.

New members appointed to airport advisory commission

By Chuck McGuire

Staff Writer

The Archuleta County Board of County Commissioners has appointed four new members to the Archuleta County Airport Advisory Commission, leaving but one vacancy left to fill - that of airport manager.

In a move to restructure the commission last month, the BOCC approved resolution 2006-08 expanding ACAAC membership from 10 to 11 members, including seven voting members appointed by the board, and four non-voting ex-officio members. Ex-officio members are the county administrator, the airport manager (once a new one is hired), an appointee selected by the town of Pagosa Springs, and an appointee chosen by the fixed base operator, currently Avjet Corporation.

Also part of the restructuring, nine of the 11 commission members will now serve three-year terms, with no term limitations. Only the county administrator and airport manager will serve as long as they hold their respective offices.

As the commission was first officially established in March 2005, term lengths were staggered from one to three years, in hope of avoiding numerous vacancies at the same time. Nevertheless, as two members suddenly resigned for personal reasons, and the original one-year terms for two others expired this spring, the commission found itself with four empty seats at regular monthly meetings. Then, when airport manager Rob Russ suddenly submitted his resignation in March, yet another seat was left vacant.

However, four interested county residents have since stepped forward, and the BOCC subsequently appointed them to the commission as regular voting members.

To fill vacancies created with the expiration of the original one-year terms, H. Pat Artis and Michael Neder have been appointed to serve three-year terms. Wade Duncan and John Weiss were chosen to serve two-year terms, thus preserving staggered term expirations.

Artis is a pilot and owns a hanger at Stevens Field. Both he and Duncan are business owners, while Neder works for a firm that sells airline cockpit instrumentation. Weiss has just retired from the State Parks service. The new members attended their first ACAAC meeting last Thursday, when Weiss was almost immediately elected commission secretary.

The four new members join commission chair Elmer Shettler, vice-chair Gerard Pearson, and Mark Weiler as voting members, and Tamara Allen (town of Pagosa Springs), Bob Campbell (county administrator) and Bob Goubitz (Avjet), the ex-officio members.

Sometime prior to Thursday's meeting, Shettler and Campbell met with Federal Aviation Administration officials regarding recent progress and future projects at Stevens Field. At some point, discussion turned to whether hiring a new airport manager was absolutely necessary at such a small facility, but FAA personnel stated that as their preference.

Meanwhile, the county had received15 applications for the position by Thursday, and Campbell hoped to begin interviews with the top four or five candidates by this week. Campbell also expressed a desire to fill the position as early as sometime in June.

Wolf Creek Pass construction complete, ahead of schedule

By Nancy Shanks

Special to The SUN

The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) and contractor Kiewit Western Companies have completed their work on U.S. 160 on the east side of Wolf Creek Pass.

Like the last phase of construction near Fun Valley, this current phase was completed a month ahead of schedule. Work had initially been scheduled for completion in July.

This third phase of construction on the pass began June 6, 2005, and work was suspended over the winter months. The project included a half-mile stretch of U.S. 160 east of the new tunnel, from the Big Meadows Reservoir access road (mile marker 174.7) east. Crews blasted and removed rock, widening the lanes to 12 feet and shoulders to 8 feet, and upgrading guardrail to meet current federal safety standards. The contracted amount for the work $11.3 million.

"We're happy to have completed another challenging project phase within schedule and budget," said CDOT Region 5 Director Richard Reynolds. "Everyone who drives this highway knows the inconvenience construction has caused. We hope they will now enjoy the smoother, safer highway."

Memorial Day events planned by American Legion

By Chuck McGuire

Staff Writer

With Memorial Day weekend upon us, Mullins-Nickerson American Legion Post 108 will again place American flags upon the graves of soldiers buried at Hilltop Cemetery in Pagosa Springs.

In recent days, flag holders at the graves of all local soldiers having fought in our nation's wars have been evaluated, and 52 will be replaced Saturday. Three new ones will also be installed, and volunteers wishing to assist should meet at Odd Fellows Cemetery at 9 a.m. Organizers ask that helpers bring a hammer.

Sunday afternoon, Legion members will place American flags on all veterans' graves in Hilltop Cemetery. The Boy Scouts and senior citizens will assist, and willing volunteers are also asked to lend a hand. Those participating should meet at Odd Fellows Cemetery at 4 p.m.

Two services are planned for Memorial Day. Those wishing to attend should meet at the Legion building at 8:30 a.m., and assemble at Hilltop Cemetery by 10. Uniforms are suggested. At 4 p.m., Legion members, the Boy Scouts, senior citizens and other volunteers will retrieve flags from veterans' graves.

Hospice of Mercy sets dates for volunteer training

Hospice of Mercy will offer a training for persons interested in volunteering, 8:30 a.m.-6 p.m. June 2, and 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. June 3.

Hospice of Mercy is recruiting volunteers to work with terminally ill patients and their families, to offer bereavement support, to provide office help and assist in fund-raising. Volunteers can work in their own communities in either La Plata or Archuleta County.

No prior experience is required. There is no fee. The training will take place in Bayfield.

To register for this program or for more information, contact the volunteer coordinator, Julie Madden, at 382-2032, by May 31.

Rotary selects July 4 parade theme

The Pagosa Springs Rotary Club Independence Day Parade Committee has selected "Helping Others Be Independent" as the 2006 July parade theme.

The parade will start at 10 a.m. Tuesday, July 4.

Application forms will be available at the Chamber of Commerce office by June 1. Deadline for turning in parade applications is June 28. Anyone intending to enter the parade must have an application in by that time. There is no entry fee.

The Pagosa Springs Independence Day Parade, stretching from 8th Street to 2nd Street, is one of the largest parades in the Southwest, drawing around 100 entries, with spectators numbering in the thousands every year.

Organizers invite everyone to participate in the event.



Firearm safety and education course for women

A Women's Firearm Safety and Education Workshop, "to educate women in firearm safety," will be held 5:30 p.m.-9:30 p.m. Friday, July 7, and 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, July 8.

This workshop is made possible through the National Wild Turkey Federation Women in the Outdoors and a grant from the NRA.

Disciplines: Hand gun, rifle, shotgun and muzzle loaders. Participants will have the opportunity to rotate to all discipline stations on Saturday.

Instructors include Don Volger, Pagosa Chief of Police; and Mike Reid, Justin Krall and Doug Purcell, Division of Wildlife officers. Emzy Barker, Charlie Rogers, Mike Alley and Steve Lynch will assist.

This workshop is open to women 13 and older. Women between the ages of 13-18 must be accompanied by an adult female family participant.

Cost is $50 per person. This includes training, Friday evening dinner, Saturday Continental breakfast and Saturday lunch.

Call Kim Lynch at 731-9172 or Pam Lynd at 731-4984 by Friday, June 23, to register. Payment is due at the time of registration. The Friday evening event will be held at the Pagosa Mounted Ranger Building and enrollment is limited.

Checks should be made payable to NWTF and sent to P.O. Box 5761, Pagosa Springs, CO 81147.

This is not a self-defense course.

Local Appreciation Days at Chimney Rock

By Karen Aspin

Special to The SUN

Members of Chimney Rock Interpretive Association invite area residents to join them this Memorial Day weekend at Chimney Rock for Local Appreciation Days.

Half-priced, guided tours of the Chimney Rock Archaeological Area will be given Saturday, Sunday and Monday at 9:30 a.m., 10:30 a.m., 1 p.m. and 2 p.m.

Discounted tour prices will be $4 for adults and children 12 years up, $1 for children 5-11 and, as always, children under 5 are admitted free of charge. These special, discounted rates are offered to show appreciation for year-round community support.

A guided tour will help visitors learn about the area occupied by the Ancestral Puebloans a thousand years ago, and offer opportunities to see the ancient Great House and the Great Kiva sites. A Chacoan "outlier," Chimney Rock is the site of the Major Northern Lunar Standstill, occurring every 18.6 years.

Even if a tour is not desired, you are always welcome to stop by the visitor cabin, at no expense, to see the pit house model and various artifacts found in the area, and talk with the friendly cabin hosts who are happy to share what they know about the site.

Please wear comfortable clothing, sturdy hiking shoes and a hat for the guided tours. It is also suggested you bring water and sunscreen. Each walking tour lasts approximately two hours, with an additional half hour driving up and back to the site.

Chimney Rock Archaeological Area is located 17 miles west of Pagosa Springs on U.S. 160 and three miles south on Colo. 151. Turn right at the gate and follow the road a half mile to the cabin registration area where the tours begin. No reservations are needed for the tours. No pets, please.

For more information, visit the Chimney Rock Web site at or call the visitor cabin at 883-5359 from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The site is now open for guided tours seven days a week, through Sept. 30.

Chimney Rock Interpretive Association, Inc., is a nonprofit organization, operating at the Chimney Rock Archaeological Area on a USFS Special Use Permit. Local Appreciation Days are sponsored by CRIA, in partnership with the USDA Forest Service, San Juan National Forest, Pagosa Ranger District.

Celebración del Rio San Juan to feature river cleanup, full slate of fun

By Connie Cook

Special to The SUN

It may be hard to imagine the Celebración del Rio San Juan without the huge runoff we had in 2005, but the second annual event will take place Sunday, June 4, at Town Park.

The proceeds and generous donations from last year's event have made possible the formation of Friends of the Upper San Juan River, a newly-formed 501(c)(3) nonprofit dedicated to promoting, celebrating and caring for our beautiful local stretch of the San Juan.

Mother Nature gave the San Juans below average snowfall over the winter which will result in lower than normal runoffs through town. With this in mind, the organizers of the annual Celebración del Rio San Juan have come up with some alternatives to activities taking place on the water.

This year, we are initiating a river cleanup that will take place from 8 a.m. until around 11:30, followed by contests, solar powered local music, cool giveaways, tasty food and lots of fun in Town Park. You can register for the cleanup beginning at 8 a.m. in Town Park, or you can sign up early by calling 264-3804. There will be coffee provided by WolfTracks and yummy goodies provided by Pagosa Baking Co. and Farrago - good incentives to get out of bed early on a Sunday morning.

The cleanup area will start at the well-known kayak put-in just upstream from JJ's Restaurant, and will continue downstream to the west end of Centennial Park. Be sure to bring along drinking water, sunscreen and work gloves. Anyone who knows Jim Miller with the Pagosa Springs Parks and Recreation Department knows how hard he and his crew work to keep our parks clean and operational. Let's dedicate this cleanup to them.

Call 264-3804 with questions or for more information on this year's event. And keep your eyes open in the near future for our new Web site,, for upcoming events and information. Once again, Pagosa, thank you for your generous and spirited support. See you at the Celebración.

Trail work complete in Martinez Canyon, work days set in June

By John Applegate

Special to The SUN

Volunteers from the San Juan Outdoor Club and the Pagosa Area Trails Council spent last Saturday, May 20, building trail in Martinez Canyon.

Previous work days had improved the access to the canyon, and it was time to start working down toward Steven Draw. We built the new trail to get above the soft, frequently wet soil, close to the creek level.

The canyon was a beautiful place to work on a warm spring day. As you walked back at the end of the day, you could say, "Wow, look what we did!"

The volunteers who made this happen were David Overley, Jean Carson, Helen Hoff, Bev Warburton, Bruce Treuk, Ed Furtaw, Margaret Reeves, Chris McCracken, Nancy Seay, Larry Lynch and John Applegate.

If you would like to help the club on upcoming work days, call John Applegate, 731-9325, or Larry Lynch, 731-5635. The next work days will be June 3-4 at Monument Park.

DOW offers orientations and seminars for sheep, goat hunters

The Colorado Division of Wildlife's Hunter Outreach Program, in partnership with the Rocky Mountain Bighorn Society, Colorado Bowhunters Association, Grand Slam Club/OVIS, Foundation for North American Wild Sheep and the Rocky Mountain Goat Foundation, will host a free Hunter Skill Seminar and Orientation July 8 at the Denver Merchandise Mart.

The seminar is designed to cover many of the important aspects of sheep and goat hunting in Colorado.

Attendance to this program is by invitation only to those successful applicants who have drawn a license for the 2006 season. Invitations will be in the mail the first week of June. Reservation instructions will be included in the invitations.

For more information about the Division's Hunter Outreach Program, go to

For information about future hunting skills clinics and seminars, go to

DOW plans summer fish stocking project in town

By Chuck McGuire

Staff Writer

While local merchants and anglers will soon stock very large trout in the San Juan River through Pagosa Springs, the Colorado Division of Wildlife plans some stocking of its own.

DOW fisheries biologist Mike Japhet told The SUN that, following runoff in late June, the DOW will stock 3,125 catchable rainbow trout in the San Juan through town. The 10-inch fish will be placed in various locations in four separate installments, beginning June 22 and ending August 1.

The DOW will also introduce 10,000 three-inch "fingerling" rainbows and 10,000 fingerling brown trout to the same stretch of river sometime during the first week of September. All fish are certified disease-free and, according to Japhet, the planned 2006 San Juan River stocking program typifies those the DOW has conducted in the previous four or five years.

Neither rainbows or browns are indigenous to Colorado waters, but due to their strength, adaptability and sporting qualities, both have been stocked in the state's cold-water fisheries for decades. Various rainbow strains are said to have originated in California and other Western waters, while brown trout were imported to the U.S. from Germany in the late 19th century.

The DOW stocks several million rainbows, browns and kokanee salmon to a variety of state cold-water streams and lakes every year, and most rainbows are the progeny of the hearty Colorado River strain that once populated that river's headwaters in good numbers.

In the 1990s, though, faced with the devastating affects of Whirling Disease on rainbow populations in the upper Colorado and virtually statewide, biologists scrambled to preserve the pure strain by milking spawn from the river's remaining fish, and creating a new brood stock in a hatchery environment. Since, another has been established in the Gunnison River system.

Trout destined for the San Juan River this summer will come from the Gunnison River stock. According to DOW hatchery manager Rich Kolecki, each 10-inch catchable rainbow costs the DOW $1.04 to raise and stock, while each rainbow fingerling runs 14.5 cents. Brown trout fingerlings cost 46 cents each. The total estimated expense of this year's San Juan stocking project is $9,300.

Kolecki said stocked fingerlings can develop rapidly, and under ideal environmental conditions, some fish will grow as much as two inches a month.

When asked what the average survival rate of stocked fish is, Kolecki said, "It varies, depending on habitat, water quality, food base, fishing pressure and a variety of other factors, but if we see a 10-percent carryover of each age class, we're doing pretty well."

Between this year's DOW stocking and that of the Pagosa Quality Fishing Project (sponsored by local merchants and anglers), which will add hundreds of very large trout to the San Juan between now and July 1, the river through town will again offer anglers excellent fishing. And, as in years past, chances of catching either dinner or a trophy trout are about as good as they get.

Camp Rocky offers youth educational adventure

The Colorado Department of Agriculture invites youth ages 14 through 19 who are looking for an educational outdoors adventure to register for Camp Rocky.

Camp Rocky, sponsored by the Colorado Association of Conservation Districts, U.S. Bureau of Reclamation and other partners, will be held July 9-15 in a mountain setting above Colorado Springs near Divide. The camp is geared toward youth who enjoy the outdoors and are interested in natural resources.

Camp Rocky staff members are professionals in their respective resource fields. These professionals help participants learn about their environment while working in teams and meeting other students from across Colorado. Each year, new and returning students choose one of the following resource fields for their area of focus:

Forest Management: The forestry team learns about different forest types, how to determine the overall health of the forest, how to find a tree's age without cutting it down, why trees can be dangerous, and how fire can be good for forest health and safety.

Soil and Water Conservation: This team learns about two primary components of nature: soil and water. They will "create" a river and learn how different types of soil affect plants, wildlife, and humans.

Rangeland Science: The rangeland science team learns about the fitness of rangeland and forage. They will study how rangelands provide food for animals, habitat for wildlife, chemicals for fuel, and clean water for drinking and recreation.

Fish and Wildlife Management: The wildlife biology team will track a radio-collared animal, go electro-fishing (a "shocking" experience), and learn how different types of Colorado wildlife survive the elements.

During the second half of the week, students from the different resource teams will work in new, integrated management teams to develop and present natural resource management plans. Participants will also explore, discuss, and use critical thinking and problem solving techniques to find solutions for various controversial environmental issues. Additional activities include volleyball games, hiking, a campfire, the Camp Rocky Challenge, and a dance. At the close of camp, students will receive a Camp Rocky Certificate of Achievement.

Eligible youth include those who have completed eighth grade by June 2006 through age 19. The cost is $250, all inclusive. Limited scholarships are available.

For more information, contact your local Conservation District or the Colorado Association of Conservation Districts, phone (970) 248-0070 or e-mail

One-day anglers need habitat stamp at State Wildlife Areas

Anglers who buy a one-day fishing license in Colorado and who plan to fish at a state wildlife areas are reminded that they must also obtain a wildlife habitat stamp.

The habitat stamp is not needed, however, if an angler fishes waters that are not located on a state wildlife area. Anglers should know where they are going to fish before buying the one-day license to determine if they will be entering a state wildlife area.

A one-day license costs $9, the habitat stamp costs $5.

A habitat stamp is needed by anyone 19 to 64 years old who enters a state wildlife area. Anglers who bring family members to a state wildlife area must be sure to purchase the needed stamps. The cost of a stamp is $10.25 when purchased alone and includes the Colorado search and rescue fee.

The $5 charge for the habitat stamp is automatically added to the cost of all other fishing and hunting licenses.

The Colorado habitat stamp program is new in 2006. Income from the stamp will be used to protect and improve wildlife habitat throughout the state.

Following are the types of fishing licenses available in Colorado. The prices include the $5 habitat stamp, a 25 cent search and rescue fee and a 75 cent wildlife education fee.

Residents: annual license for ages 16 to 63, $31; combination fishing and small game, $46; second rod stamp, $5; annual licenses for anglers 64 or older are free, add $5 for the habitat stamp.

Non-residents: annual license $61; five-day license, $26; second rod stamp $5.

DOW offers hunter outreach program training

The Colorado Division of Wildlife (DOW) Hunter Outreach Program provides unique opportunities for hundreds of youth and novice hunters to participate in educational hunting adventures across the state of Colorado.

The program depends on volunteers and Huntmasters to assist in all aspects of planning, organizing and conducting these activities.

Hunter Outreach Volunteer orientations and Huntmaster training workshops will be held over the next several months. Hunter Outreach Volunteer orientations are planned for May 31, June 13 and July 18. The Huntmaster training workshops are planned for June 10-11 and Aug. 5-6.

If you are interested in attending one of these sessions and contributing to DOW efforts to extend our hunting heritage to future generations of Coloradans, call Jim Bulger, Hunter Outreach Coordinator at (303) 291-7248 or e-mail for more information.

For more information about Hunter Outreach Huntmasters and Volunteers, go to

For more information about the Division's Hunter Outreach Program, go to


 Catch and Release

Casting, chaos, what I know, what I do

By James Robinson

SUN Columnist

Lightning moves down from the high country and marches through the valley. Legions of heavy black clouds fuel the electrical storm, and bolts of jagged, supercharged chaos rip in vertical and horizontal streaks across the sky, their passage punctuated by cacophonous thunder.

The storm brings wind and rain, and heavy lumbering gusts rip through the cottonwood grove and batter the newly-leafed aspens in the front yard. The metal roof shrieks under the pummeling of thousands of tiny, liquid hammers, and I sit below on the porch, under the wide overhang and embrace the chaos.

My mind is Jackson Pollock, Neil Young and Charlie Parker. My stereo is a bitch brewed up by Miles Davis, and she dances an epileptic tango with the storm. My heart pounds with the rush of nicotine, and my pulse falters under the strain of red wine, tobacco and uncertainty. The only clarity lies in a glass of grappa, but grappa only adds to the chaos but I am committed to the ride.

Even under the protection of the porch, I am lashed by the storm. And I sit, one leg crossed over the other like I'm sipping cocktails on Waikiki, while rain peppers my glasses. All is well. I have entered the eye of the storm and inside it is dead calm, while outside the world falls apart. And in my mind, in the eye, the music stops, the colors cease to run, and I think, "Do you ever feel like your just going through the motions?"

Do you ever feel like you are watching a movie of your life - you're the main character and the only member of the audience, and the scenes unfold slowly, almost painfully, and you want to reach inside the screen and change how things transpire but you can't because it's a movie, you're the audience, and you are compelled to watch? You do the things you do because that's what you've done all you're life, because that's what you know, because that's what you're comfortable with.

I am on a river. It is dusk and with the advancing darkness comes an insidious chill. It is not yet summer. I cast into the shadows and the deep, black water and the line runs fast through my fingertips on a double haul, and the fly whizzes over my head, the line traveling in a clean tight loop. The fly lands exactly where I intend, and I work it down the run, let it tail, let it skitter and I retrieve, then repeat.

The process is mechanical, automatic. My shoulder understands the motion. The muscles are scarred by the memory of a thousand casts and they perform without prompting - lift, false cast, and heave. I do this as the minutes tick by because it is what I know. It is what I am supposed to do. It is why I am here. Soon I am absorbed by the blackness, but I continue.

I pause from casting and take hold of the invisible monofilament. I run my fingers down its length to the end and the bristly feel of an elk hair caddis. I hold my hands outstretched, silhouetted against the sky, and in the last vestiges of skylight, I snip the caddis and tie on something different. I am pianist pounding the keys by rote and my fingers flutter automatically - they know the routine.

With a new fly in place, I begin the rhythm again but there are no takers. I have not raised a single trout, but I continue. I continue because this is what I know. This is what I do. Because this is who I am. But as I cast, I know in my heart it means nothing. And it's hard to admit that the very thing you love the most has consumed you to the point you no longer care. But I continue.

I cast until I can't see, until the line and the rod are invisible and it's nothing but me, a slow rocking motion and a subtle vibration in the rod telling me its time to release the line. Finally, when everything is shrouded by the totality of darkness, a trout takes the fly and erupts from the river bottom. The silvery fish flies straight up, perpendicular to the current, its shiny belly glistening in the gathering moonlight, then it writhes and tosses the hook.

Relieved of its burden, the line flies limp on the breeze and the trout disappears with a whisper. I am unfazed. This is business. This is what I know. This is what I do. This is who I am. And I cast, although I know in my heart it means nothing. It's hard to admit that the very thing you love the most has consumed you to the point you no longer care.

Back on the porch, the storm rages and I have left the eye and reentered the chaos. I like it there. The chaos does not require thought, nor introspection, nor analysis. It is emotion. It is tactile. It rips your guts, and the electricity moves through you and around you. The electricity is what you feel. The rain is what you smell. The coming of the wind is something you sense. And that taste of iron in your mouth is fear, anger, hatred and frustration. It marks the beginning of a glorious annihilation.

The storm swirls in a juggernaut of protons and neutrons. It is bound together by some sort of tenuous, although inviolate molecular gravity, yet it seems ready to split at a moment's notice, and that's where the beauty lies. Everything is on the verge of cataclysm. Within dissonance there is harmony, and within cacophony unity. Within the eye there is tumult and in the raging sea of chaos, peace.

My mind is Jackson Pollock, Neil Young and Charlie Parker. My stereo is a bitch brewed up by Miles Davis, and she dances an epileptic tango with the storm. My heart pounds with the rush of nicotine, and my pulse falters under the strain of red wine, tobacco and uncertainty. The only clarity lies in a glass of grappa, but grappa only adds to the chaos but I am committed to the ride.

Do you ever feel like you are watching a movie of your life - you're the main character and the only member of the audience, and the scenes unfold slowly, almost painfully, and you want to reach inside the screen and change how things transpire but you can't because it's a movie, you're the audience, and you are compelled to watch?

Do you do the things you do because that's what you've done all you're life, because that's what you know, because that's what you're comfortable with?

I cast because this is what I know. This is what I do. This is who I am. And I cast although I know in my heart it means nothing. It's hard to admit that the very thing you love the most has consumed you to the point you no longer care.

The only clarity lies in a glass of grappa, but grappa only adds to the chaos


Good story

Dear Editor:

Ms. Ferguson's letter ("Spanish Americans") is a wonderful mixture of ideas, a buffet of concepts and a good story. First, everyone should know there still is a Flat Earth Society. Second, there is documented history and oral history, the latter being generally unreliable, but interesting.

Third, Mexico is a country, but America is the whole continent, tip to tip, not a "country." The United States of America is a country, but with a variety of "cultural values, mindsets and influences (and) agendas," presumably unified by an adherence to the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights, regardless of the spelling, pronunciation or "look" of a last name or a skin color. And, remember, we are citizens of our respective states, not "citizens of the USA."

Finally, my name, "Cazedessus," is French, but I am a fifth-generation "U.S. American," and not "Franconic," or similar. Ms. Ferguson can claim or be as she wishes, and "Spanish American" is okay with me. "Hispanic" has always sounded strange to me, being from Louisiana.

But, what exactly is this "carrier blood" that she mentions? Sangre de ?

C.E. Cazedessus II


Dear Editor:

I was astonished by the obviously misinformed letter from Paulette Heber in last week's paper concerning the so-called "chemical trails" in the sky. I assume she is referring to the contrails/vapor trails from aircraft.

Experts liken these contrails to "seeing your breath" when you exhale outside on a cold day. These contrails are natural phenomenons similar to clouds and do not "weaken our population" nor "pollute our land and water."

I was surprised that such an obviously erroneous and inflammatory letter would even have been considered for publishing by the SUN.

An advocate of the truth,

Fred A. Ebeling

Editor's note: Ms. Heber is far from alone in believing contrails have been laced with chemical agents, thus the term "chemtrails." Thus, an advocacy of the truth entails at least occasional recognition of a widespread opinion - scientific fact or not, agree or not.

Have your say

Dear Editor:

So, you want to have your say on our upcoming county elections?

If you aren't a registered Republican on or before July 10, forget it!

As of this date, the only contested race in this county is for sheriff, and all the candidates for that position are Republicans. Therefore, the winner of that race in the August primary will be your next sheriff.

What can you do if you want to participate?

A. Do nothing. You give up your right to have your vote count in the contest. Or,

B. Register as a Republican on or before July 10 and participate in the August primary. You may change your party affiliation after the primary if you choose. Or,

C. Voters registered as unaffiliated ("independent") may participate by declaring a party affiliation at your polling place in August, or before at the County Clerk's office. Tragically, too many people don't bother to change.

Is this change of affiliation and registering to vote a lot of trouble? If you consider your vote a privilege that was given to you as a member of this nearly 230-year-old democracy, then no trouble is too much.

We are approaching Memorial Day which honors those who gave their lives so that we have the freedom to vote. Don't belittle their sacrifice. Don't throw away your right to vote because it's too much trouble. Your franchise is too precious to waste.

For instructions on how to register to vote, change party affiliations or vote by mail, please visit or call the election department of the county clerk, 264-8350.

To repeat: The winner of this year's contested county position will be decided on the Republican ballot in the August primary. Don't disenfranchise yourself. Participate!

Judy Esterly


Dear Editor:

We are writing in response to several incidents recently involving pets and vehicles, one of which we witnessed when a small dog ran through the intersection at Meadows/160 and was hit by a truck.

The driver of the truck came back around to help, but it was too late. The driver was saddened and very upset, and was trying to comfort the dog. The dog's breathing was very labored and he was obviously in pain. He did not have any collar or identification, so we could not contact the owner. Also, we do not know if he had fallen out of a vehicle or was just roaming when he was hit.

Animal control showed up within minutes and we watched the dog breathe its last breath. This poor dog did not deserve to die like this. He should have been at home with his loving family. We cannot believe some people let their animals run loose, with blatant disregard for their pets' safety. We are furious that pet owners do not take more precautions in the lives of their pets. If you cannot give your pet a safe and loving environment, then you should not have the pet. Take time to register the pet, give it some sort of identification, be it tags or microchip. If your pet likes to run, take it to the mountains or a park, you do have total control of your pet's life.

It pains us so much to see cats and dogs dead or dying on the side of the road. It is so unnecessary. We understand that accidents happen, but so many can be prevented if you take the time to ensure your pets' safety.

Awareness comes first, then action. Please, for your pets' sake, be proactive.

Jason Dockter and Wendy Stacey


Dear Editor:

There are two words to describe the problem with the Archuleta Democrats: The Chair.

Ben Douglas, current chair for Archuleta Democrats, has failed Democrats and others seeking voting options on many levels. Archuleta Democrats are ranked third, under the unaffiliated. A record number of Archuleta Democrats switched their party affiliation to Republican, because party leaders failed to attract and court candidates for Democrats to support.

Communication between Archuleta Democrats is nonexistent: no Web site, no e-mails, no consistent meetings, no organization - period! The message of active progressive Democrats and others has been lost under Douglas with a constant abuse of authority and attempts to dictate or dismiss potential candidates from Archuleta voters with good ol' boy yellow dog politics.

Douglas has openly chastised Archuleta Democrats as being lazy, apathetic and unenthusiastic. Apparently, our chair believes he is stuck with a motley crew of worthless Democrats. The same worthless, apathetic, unenthusiastic citizens who can be seen volunteering their time selflessly in bipartisan civic/religious/community service projects, school programs, and political action committees throughout our county, state, and nation. Has anyone ever seen Ben Douglas participate in this community? Most voting Democrats don't even know he's the party chair. It's time for a change; it's time for new progressive leadership; it's time to give Ben Douglas the boot, and let him play party chair in Texas where he still spends his time.

Anita Sherman Hughes

Trash problem

Dear Editor:

Did you know that Colorado Kids 4-H club picks up trash along the roadside at the intersection of U.S. 160 and 84? Trash pickup is one of our community service projects.

On Friday, May 12, we picked up trash and found beer bottles, McDonald's bags, Coca Cola cups, plastic bags, soda cans, baby wipes, cigarette butts and newspapers. Others items we have previously found are a golden spoon, a shoe, a sardine can, a rope, CDs, socks, a beware of dog sign, water jugs, a golf ball and bottle caps.

For our safety we wear orange reflective vests and are accompanied by adults. Some kids wear gloves, others don't.

Please keep our highways and community beautiful by disposing of your trash properly.

Daisy Jones

Harsh words

Dear Editor:

American society, as a whole, doesn't care a whit about soldiers KIA, much less honoring them. The only thing that means anything to the population at large is that their children aren't part of our armed forces. I know these are harsh words, but I think them accurate.

Sometimes in the rush of history, we, as a nation, tend to forget those who sacrificed their lives in military action around the world; but it should not happen on Memorial Day folks.

I can assure you that the 29th of May is a sacred day to all war veterans; none need to be reminded of the reason that Memorial Day must be commemorated. But what about the general public, and more important, future generations? Do most non-veterans really recognize the importance of the day honoring their fellow Americans killed in war? Judging from what Memorial Day has become - simply another day off from work - the answer is a resounding no. Perhaps a reminder is due then.

Sacrifice is meaningless without remembrance. America's collective consciousness demands that all citizens recall and be aware of the deaths of their fellow countrymen during wartime.

Far too often, the nation as a whole takes for granted the freedoms all Americans enjoy. Those freedoms were paid for with the lives of others few of us actually knew. That's why they are all collectively remembered on one special day.

This should be regarded as a civic obligation, for this is a national debt that can only be truly repaid by individual Americans. By honoring the nation's war dead, we preserve their memory and thus their service and sacrifice in the memories of future generations.

They came from all walks of life and regions of the country. But they all had one thing in common - love of and loyalty to country. This bond cemented ties between them in times of trials, allowing a diverse lot of Americans to achieve monumental ends.

We remember the loss of loved ones, a sense of loss that takes group form. In essence, America is commemorating those who made the greatest sacrifice possible - giving one's own life on behalf of others.

Means of paying tribute vary. Pausing for a few moments of personal silence is available to everyone and public displays of patriotism are essential if the notion of remembering war dead is to be instilled in youth.

As America's older war veterans fast disappear from society's landscape, there are fewer and fewer standard bearers left to carry the torch of remembrance. Such traditions will live on only if there is a vibrant movement to which that torch can be passed.

Now, more than in recent years, the enduring relevance of Memorial Day should be clearly evident. With two wars underway, the public has no excuse not to remember.

This much is owed to the more than 2,500 Americans who have died thus far in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Jim Sawicki

  Community News

Annual Pagosa Fiber Festival this weekend

By Pauline Benetti

Special to The PREVIEW

Where can you take the entire family for a weekend of activities that are fun, educational, provide a variety of tasty food and cost a mere $1 for adults with kids under 12 free?

Try the 2006 Pagosa Fiber Festival to be held this weekend at the Archuleta County Fairgrounds. Hours are 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday and 10-5 Sunday. It is too late to sign up this year for workshops in the fiber arts, but there is always next year.

The two-day Pagosa Fiber Festival not only gives breeders of fiber-producing animals the opportunity to show and sell their stock, but also provides a venue where the general public can observe all aspects of the fiber industry - from caring for and shearing livestock, to processing the fleece, to the production of finished goods - all in one place. It also gives the public an opportunity to purchase fiber-related products ranging from raw fleece, to yarn, to spinning wheels, to one-of-a-kind handmade fashions. In essence, visitors can see the entire process, - from fleece on the animal to fashion in your wardrobe or home.

For the livestock enthusiast, the 2006 PFF will feature alpacas, llamas, different types of sheep, mohair-producing angora goats and fuzzy French lop rabbits. Visitors will have the opportunity to learn many aspects of raising fiber-bearing animals by talking with participating breeders, and will be able to view first hand how goats and sheep are sheared during demonstrations featured throughout the day Saturday and Sunday.

Two new events will be introduced this year: fiber arts and handspun yarn competitions. With these events, spectators will see the ultimate in creative and beautiful garments and home accessories and yarns.

The festival-sponsored Navajo Rug Auction will feature 200 rugs straight from the Navajo weavers, with many of the weavers in attendance and happy to talk about their works. This event will begin at 6 p.m. Sunday. Registration for the Auction begins at 3. The rugs are on display all day Saturday and Sunday until 3.

The rare Churro sheep is making a comeback from near extinction with 3,000 animals currently registered . Members of the Navajo nonprofit DBI will be present to answer questions about this rare and interesting breed. Its long, silky and strong fleece is very much prized by Navajo weavers for creating the very best rugs. The auction will present a select group of rugs created from Churro yarn.

So what happens to the fleece once it's been shorn from the animal? Well, this is where the festival is truly a showcase. Fiber artists from the Four Corners area and beyond will converge on Pagosa to display their skills. Spinners will be on hand to demonstrate how to card, sort and spin fiber. The spinning process itself is done by using either the traditional "drop spindle," or by the more familiar spinning wheel. Artisans will explain how fibers are sorted, blended, spun and plyed to create colorful yarn.

Knitters, crocheters and weavers will discuss and demonstrate ways to utilize that finished yarn. Knitting and crocheting result in a relatively "loose" material, whereas weaving results in a "tighter" material that can be cut and sewn, although many woven products simply come off the loom as finished goods.

And that's not all. Many people cannot afford the sometimes expensive equipment required for spinning and weaving, nor do they have enough time to commit to a long-term project. That's where another fiber art comes in - felting. Felting, by definition, is the non-chemical binding of natural fibers through the application of hot, soapy water and pressure. It requires no specialized equipment, so is an ideal craft for both novice and more advanced artisans. Felting demonstrations will occur periodically during the course of the festival.

During the day Saturday, a special project will be underway: From Sheep to Shawl. This is a traditional event in which all the fiber arts come together (carders, spinners, knitter, weavers, etc.) each one "doing their own thing." At the end of the day, their efforts are joined and an object emerges, whether it be a shawl, a blanket or something quite different. Spectators will be enthralled by the progress from raw sheep fleece to a usable object and are invited (for a donation) to take a ticket for a drawing. The funds collected will go toward workshop scholarships in 2007. A fashion show will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday as a fitting tribute to the theme of "From Fleece to Fashion" that the Pagosa Fiber Festival embodies. A complete schedule of events follows.

For further information about the Pagosa Fiber Festival, contact Pauline Benetti at 264-5232 or e-mail .

Festival schedule

Saturday, May 27.

9 a.m. - Beginning Crochet demonstration by Marsha Harris. Her booth.

9-10 a.m. - Entries accepted in Fiber Arts Competition. Small Tent.

10 a.m. - Needle Felting demonstration by Fran Moritz. Demo Area.

10:30 a.m. - Judging of Fiber Arts begins. Small Tent.

11 a.m. - Rigid Heddle Weaving. Demo Area.

Noon - Drop Spindle Spinning demonstration by Kathy Bright. Her booth.

1 p.m. - Knitting with Beads demonstration by Judy Ditmore. Demo Area.

2 p.m. - Spinning Wheel demonstration by Nancy Wilson. Her booth.

3 p.m. - Weaving with a Triangle Loom demonstration by Anna Kinney. Demo Area.


- Those interested in livestock will find several knowledgeable folks in the Livestock tent to answer questions, including Jim Burbach of Navajo Lake Alpacas.

- Sonny Gustamontes will shear sheep and angora goats on the raised platform throughout the day.

- The Sheep to Shawl event will be ongoing throughout the day in the main building; tickets available for a donation.

- Navajo Rugs will be on display in the Front Room from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

- The Smiths will conduct their interactive weaving demo with kids of all ages in the Livestock Tent.

- Participate in various drawings by depositing admission tickets with appropriate vendors.

Sunday, May 28.

10 a.m. - Locker Hooking demonstration by Pam Dyer. Demo Area.

11 a.m. - Spinning Wheel demonstration by Diane de Souza. Demo Area.

Noon - Knitting Without Needles demonstration by Joe Keller. Her booth.

1 p.m. - Wet Felting demonstration by Lois Burbach. Demo Area.

2 p.m. - Fashion show. Demo Area.

3 p.m. - Hand Shear and Spin Angora Goat demonstration by Ellen Sibelius. Her booth.

3 p.m. - Registration for Navajo Rug Auction begins. Small Tent.


- Those interested in livestock will find several knowledgeable folks in the Livestock tent to answer questions, including Jim Burbach of Navajo Lake Alpacas.

- Sonny Gustamontes will shear sheep and angora goats on the raised platform throughout the day.

- The Sheep to Shawl event will conclude with the production of a piece. Drawing will follow.

- The Smiths will conduct their interactive weaving demo with kids of all ages in the Livestock Tent.

- Navajo Rugs will be on display in the Extension Building South Room, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.

- Between 4 and 5 p.m. several vendors will have drawings at their booths for articles donated to the festival. Use admission ticket to participate.

Mesa Verde historical photos on display in Pagosa

To celebrate the 2006 centennial of the founding of Mesa Verde National Park, the Mesa Verde Museum Association commissioned San Juan Images to research the photographic archives at the park, select historical photos, and restore the images to near their original state.

The images are then reprinted with a sepia tone. Some photographs are over 100 years old and were taken on glass plates. A total of 18 images have been restored and are available for sale to the public.

Twelve of the historical photographs of Mesa Verde have been assembled into an exhibit with complete descriptions of the photographs, their subjects and the photographer. The photographs will be on display June 1-30 at Moonlight Books and Gallery, 434 Pagosa St.

The restored images are offered for sale either as matted prints or greeting cards. Matted or framed prints are available in finished sizes of 8x10, 11x14, and 14x18. Photo note cards are available in two styles depending on the images. Four of the prints are available as Limited Editions.

Proceeds from all sales benefit the Mesa Verde Museum Association.

Call Barbara Lawson at (970) 884-7828 for more information.

Two step with In Step and the Loves

By Belinda LaPierre

Special to The PREVIEW

The In Step Dance Club welcomes back Richard and Debbie Love, as they return to Pagosa to teach a special "Night Club Two Step, with a Splash of Samba" workshop Saturday, June 3.

The Loves are from Colorado Springs, but formerly lived in Pagosa Springs,. They were the originators of our ballroom dance club here.

They are now certified instructors with Dance Vision International dance association (DVIDA), and currently run a dance club in Colorado Springs called, "Dancing with Love."

Along with teaching ballroom dancing, Debbie works with deaf students at Pikes Peak Community College, while working toward her masters with the University of Phoenix. Richard is the postmaster in Fountain (formerly postmaster of Pagosa). We are indeed fortunate to have them on our schedule.

Have you ever gone to a dance and realized that you don't have a clue what to do on those slower songs? Now is your time to find out. Night Club Two Step is a versatile and practical social dance, also known as the Disco Two Step; and not to be confused with the country western two step. It is danced primarily to contemporary soft rock or love songs such as "Lady in Red," by Chris DeBurgh and "2 Become 1," by the Spice Girls. This type of music is common just about everywhere and is often heard in nightclubs and on the radio.

The basis for the dance is drawn from the old surfer stomp. It was developed by Biddy Schwimmer back in the late 1960s before the hustle.

The rhythm of the dance is very simple and rarely changes from the "one and two" count. This uncomplicated romantic dance fills a gap where no other ballroom dance fits. It gives the dancer, either beginner or advanced, the opportunity to express and create without rigid technique being required. The Night Club Two Step is an attractive dance that is easy to learn and can be danced often.

The Loves will be covering Night Club Two Step, and a short introduction to samba - a lively Latin dance that utilizes some of the same patterns as the two step. This workshop is for anyone 17 years old and up, from first-timers to more experienced dancers, and is for both singles and couples. (You do not need a partner to attend.) Everyone is welcome.

After the workshop, there will be a potluck dinner and dance from 6-10:30 p.m. (over 21 only, please). Beverages will be provided, and the clubhouse has a full kitchen available to refrigerate and/or warm up your potluck dishes. Dancing will be to a wide variety of CD music.

This fun-filled event will take place in the PLPOA Clubhouse, 230 Port Ave. in Pagosa. Wear comfortable clothing to the workshop. You may bring dressier attire to change into for the dinner and dance if desired. It is very much appreciated if you bring shoes that have smooth or split leather soles, something that does not leave black marks or mud.

Deb Aspen will continue teaching Night Club Two Step as the dance of the month in June. Classes will be held 7-9 p.m June 7, 15, 22 and 29, with practice sessions 3-5 p.m. June 4, 11, 18 and 25.

Please come 10-15 minutes early to register and have your attendance counted towards the merit program. All sessions meet at the PLPOA Clubhouse.

For more information, Call Deb Aspen at 731-3338.

Brave Combo: Hip and happy at Indiefest

By Crista Munro

Special to The PREVIEW

Just two more weeks left until the campers start arriving for the inaugural FolkWest Independent Music Festival.

Indiefest will deliver 10 incredibly diverse sets of music over two days on June 10 and 11 on Reservoir Hill. The festival will also include a kids' program, arts and crafts vending, on-site camping and more.

One band in particular exemplifies a huge amount of diversity within its own music - from polka to swingin' jazz, Brave Combo does it all with style.

Rarely, if ever, has a band name been more apropos than Brave Combo's, not only at the group's inception, but even more so 26 years after the fact. At first glance, back in 1979, the Denton, Texas, based outfit was pegged as a New Wave polka band, a courageous if not almost oxymoronic endeavor. Yet it clicked and launched a stunning run that has now catapulted it well into the new century. Over the last 26 years, Brave Combo has collected a dizzying array of descriptive musical pegs, boldly going where few bands have gone before, and even fewer could (or would) dare to venture.

Succeeding in its first mission, Brave Combo is America's premier contemporary polka band, and a Grammy winning one at that. In the same breath, one can describe them as a groundbreaking world music act, a hot jazz quintet, a rollicking rock 'n roll bar band, a Tex-Mex conjunto, a sizzling blues band, a saucy cocktail combo, a deadly serious novelty act, a Latin orchestra, and one of America's dance bands par excellence.

It's all in a night's work for Brave Combo, often in a synergistic fashion that includes everything from klezmer surf rock to rocking cha cha to what The Washington Post calls "mosh pit polka," as well as to the hokey pokey and the chicken dance. And zyedeco, acid rock, Muzak, bubblegum, cumbia, classical, and the twist, to still not exhaust the list. This plethoric multitude of musical styles and flavors is frequently mixed, matched, and melded, into delicious new concoctions by an imaginative team of musical gourmet master chefs.

"We're just trying to be a brave combo," is how bandleader Carl Finch explains what Billboard calls the band's "world-wise, unclassifiable music."

The band's prime directive is to "break down people's perceptions about what's cool to like in music. Our deal is to shake up people's ideas about what they label hip, or right or wrong." In the process Brave Combo also shakes listeners' hips and tail feathers, sparks delight, rocks all night long, and elicits more than a few chuckles.

On March 21, 2004, Brave Combo played Oktoberfest in the beloved American burg of Springfield on an episode of "The Simpsons." As followers of both Brave Combo and the long-running animated hit should not find surprising, Simpsons creator Matt Groening is a devoted Brave Combo fan. "They prove you can be hip and still be happy," says Groening. "Really, Brave Combo should have their own cartoon." The band has marched in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade underneath Woody Woodpecker, recorded with the late Tiny Tim, and played such private fetes as David Byrne's wedding and the 200th episode party for "The Simpsons."

The Brave Combo trail also includes festivals of all stripes, rock clubs, colleges, roadhouses, dances, state fairs, cultural centers and more - basically anywhere there's a stage and an audience willing to open up their minds and dance.

Brave Combo has charmed countless listeners and won avid devotees as they play some 150 dates a year that include everything from the Labor Day weekend West Fest Czech polka festival in Central Texas to being perhaps the world's finest (okay, maybe only) St. Patrick's Day polka band. They've taken their polka-plus-more sound multiple times to Japan and Europe, including appearances at such Continental festivals as Roskilde (Denmark), Printemps de Bourges (France), Steirischer Herbst (Austria), Storsjoyran (Sweden), and Lowlands (Holland).

Brave Combo has been frequent guests on such public broadcasting shows as The Lonesome Pine Special, Fresh Air, All Things Considered, The Next Big Thing and A Prairie Home Companion, whose host Garrison Keillor calls them "entertainers who just won't take no for an answer."

Is Brave Combo a cult band? Well, if it is, it's one with converts and outposts across North America and south of the border, as well as around the world. And like any self-respecting cult, there is an underlying international agenda behind the music, as The Chicago Tribune divined when it dubbed Brave Combo a "party band with a purpose." And yes, there is a purpose. "Peace through polka" may sound like a quip, but the way Brave Combo can erase musical prejudices and seduce people to like music they thought they wouldn't or didn't, does serve a higher calling. "I do think the acceptance of polka and other dance rhythms can help bring about world peace. If the people of the world can start dancing together, they can learn to respect each other's cultures, too," concludes Finch. "That kind of understanding will give us all a better chance to survive."

If Brave Combo's description intrigues you, you can check out their Indiefest set at 4:30 p.m. Saturday, June 10.

Two-day or single day tickets for the festival are on sale downtown at Moonlight Books and also at Wolf Tracks Coffee & Books in the Pagosa Country Center. Children 12 and under are admitted free with an accompanying adult. To purchase tickets with a credit card, or for additional information, call (970) 731-5582 or visit There may still be a few volunteer positions available; if interested call the number above.

Music in the Mountains awards scholarship to local student

By Carole Howard

Special to The PREVIEW

Kimberly Judd is a model student and community citizen. She also loves music and some day hopes to become a professional musician.

Now she will be going to the Young Musicians Summer Festival at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, June 18-24, thanks to a scholarship from Music in the Mountains.

"Kimberly is exactly the type of student Music in the Mountains is looking to sponsor," said Jan Clinkenbeard, chair of Music in the Mountains in Pagosa Springs. "She's exceptionally talented and she also gives back to her community."

Kimberly, 17, daughter of Janna and Russell Voorhis of Pagosa Springs and Kerry Judd of Boise, Idaho, just completed her junior year at the Pagosa Springs High School. She is involved in community service activities such as tutoring first-to-fourth-grade students, and clubs such as Future Business Leaders of America and Key Club, the student version of Kiwanis. She also was named to the National Honor Society.

On the musical front, Kimberly's resume is equally impressive. She recently made the Colorado All-State Choir and All-State Band honor performances. She plays the clarinet in the Durango Youth Symphony and the saxophone in a jazz group. She also has performed in the chorus in the high school's productions of "Oklahoma" and "Seussical."

Kimberly's scholarship from Music in the Mountains will allow her to join other young instrumentalists and vocalists ages 14-18 from all over the world in a special week-long music program that encompasses instruction in more than 20 instruments, including voice. Musical styles include classical, big band, jazz and blues, with instruction at the intermediate and advanced levels. The daily schedule may include band, orchestra, symphony, ensembles or jazz section, along with literature, theory, master classes and practice sessions.

This is Kimberly's third year at the Young Musicians Summer Festival. In 2003 family members helped her raise enough money to attend, and in 2004 she received a scholarship from Music Boosters.

"It is a wonderful opportunity," Kimberly said. "But as a student working part time at an after-school job and paying for my own saxophone and private lessons, I would not have had sufficient funds to go if it were not for Music in the Mountains. I am very grateful for their support - and for all their programs for young people in Pagosa."

Each summer Music in the Mountains hosts a major benefit event to raise money for its many youth programs in our town. These funds provide music scholarships, bring professional musicians into Pagosa schools for hands-on workshops, fund instrument purchase and repair programs for our school bands, and host the annual free Family Festivo concert for "kids of all ages" in Town Park, this year taking place on Thursday, July 27.

Although events like these can seem more like fun than learning, Clinkenbeard points out that there are additional serious benefits to Music in the Mountain activities for Pagosa's school children.

Research has shown that early introduction to music helps young people perform better in their core classes and also encourages them to become concert-goers and performers," Clinkenbeard. "Best of all, the children have fun while they are learning about music and experiencing great performances."

World-famous violinists to perform together for Music in the Mountains audience

By Carole Howard

Special to The Preview

Music in the Mountains audiences in Pagosa Springs have been treated to performances by some of the world's most accomplished violinists over the past four years. But this summer, in celebration of the fifth season of the classical musical festival in our town, we will experience a unique event when two of the world's top young virtuosos will "duel" on the concert stage on Wednesday, July 19.

On the program are violinists Vadim Gluzman and Philippe Quint, who will be accompanied by Gluzman's wife Angela Yoffe on piano performing a selection of works by composers including Leclair, Beethoven, Prokofiev, Frolov, Ravel and Sarasate. In keeping with the informality of festival chamber music concerts, the artists will offer commentary from the stage about these pieces.

An inspirational friendship with Isaac Stern helped launch Gluzman's career in 1991. Hailed as one of the most dynamic artists of his generation, the 32-year-old Ukranian-born artist has performed on four continents in recent years. Gluzman's rare passion, physical strength and electrifying propensity for altering rhythms and phrases make him one of the most inspiring and dynamic performers on the musical scene today.

Born to a family of professional musicians, Gluzman began studying violin at age seven. Yoffe, who was born into a family of musicians in Latvia, began her piano studies at age four. One German critic called the combination of Gluzman and wife Yoffe "one of the best instrumental duos of all time."

Quint, born in St. Petersburg, Russia and now an American citizen, has built his reputation as a consummate violin soloist with audiences and critics alike. His recent recording of Bernstein's Serenade after Plato's Symposium won high praise from many, including the BBC Magazine's reviewer who lauded his "formidable technique and shapely phrasing."

This rising young New Yorker has established himself as one of the most brilliant and charismatic artists of his generation. Equally at home with classical and romantic music, he also is renowned for his commanding interpretations of 20th century works.

Rare historic instruments

Hard as it is to top these musicians' impressive resumes, the instruments that the two violists will play for our Pagosa audience also are exceptional.

Gluzman plays the outstanding 1690 "ex-Leopold Auer" Antonio Stradivari violin, on extended loan from the Stradivari Society of Chicago. Quint performs on a rare 17th century Paolo Maggini violin on loan from Machold Rare Violins.

Tickets for the "Dueling Violins" event are $40. When you purchase tickets for this or any of this summer's Music in the Mountains concerts at the Pagosa Springs Chamber of Commerce, you can pay by cash, check or credit card (MasterCard or Visa). Tickets also are available on line at or through the Music in the Mountains web site at

All the concerts take place in a spectacular mountain setting at BootJack Ranch on U.S. 160 east of Pagosa Springs, thanks to the generosity of David and Carol Brown, owners of the ranch and founders of the Music in the Mountains festival in Pagosa. This "Dueling Violins" concert is being presented by Parelli Natural Horse-Man-Ship.

Jan Clinkenbeard, chair of the steering committee in charge of Music in the Mountains in Pagosa, pointed out that ticket prices cover less than one third of the cost of putting on these concerts. "Pagosa audiences greatly enjoy the many soloists we attract summer after summer, as well as our fabulous festival orchestra. That is why the contributions we receive from individual donors, businesses and other larger organizations are so important to our Pagosa festival," she said.

Corporate donors for the 2006 summer season include BootJack Ranch, Parelli Natural Horse-Man-Ship, Citizens Bank, Coleman Vision, Bank of the San Juans, Harts Construction and Harts Rocky Mountain Retreat, Prudential Triple S Realty, Coyote Hill Lodge, LPEA Round Up Foundation, and the Town of Pagosa Springs. Various promotion opportunities are available to program advertisers and major donors. For more information, contact Clinkenbeard at 264-5918

As well, all of the planning and organizational work for Music in the Mountains in Pagosa is done by Clinkenbeard and her local volunteer steering committee composed of Melinda Baum, Mary Jo Coulehan, Carole Howard, Crystal Howe, Teresa Huft, Ed Lowrance and Lisa Scott.

Music and Muses coming in June

By Paul Roberts

Special to The PREVIEW

A new show, Music and Muses, will be presented in Pagosa at 7 p.m. Saturday, June 17, at the Pagosa Lakes Clubhouse.

An original production, Music and Muses is a collaboration of local performers who have stretched beyond the boundaries of their various artistic styles, to find common ground in the inspiration of creative expression.

Performing as minstrels, jesters, dancers, poets and poetesses, the show features the talents of John Graves, Sally Yates, Chris Baum, Larry Elginer, Joy Redmon, Bob Nordmann, Natalie and Jarrell Tyson, Matthew and Tiffany Brunson, June Marquez, Carla and Paul Roberts.

Weaving together the show's various cross-era components, is a playful character named Sire John the Barb - performed by Colorado cultural treasure, John Graves.

Graves is a consummate performer, composer, dramatist, producer, teacher, artistic consultant and tireless supporter of all things artistic. Born in Porterville, Calif., in 1928, he was a child prodigy, composing songs and performing on piano for school and vaudeville type shows by the age of 8.

Graves has had a distinguished career as professional musician, television and movie producer and college professor. Throughout his various life pursuits, Graves' love and devotion to music has remained constant. Even during the thick of his television and movie production days, he performed several nights a week at private parties for the likes of Judy Garland, Groucho Marx, Danny Thomas, John Wayne and other stars. He has accompanied George Burns, June Christy, Rosemary Clooney, Rudy Vallee, Redd Foxx, Arthur Duncan, Jimmy Durante and other musical celebrities. He also performed on television for the Betty White show and was musical director for the Gloria Hart Show.

While working with NBC, Graves supervised such shows as Bonanza, I Dream of Jeannie, Ironside, The Man from Uncle, Then Came Bronson, The Debbie Reynolds Show, The Monkees, and a series shot in London with Lord Lew Grade called The Strange Report. He was the executive in charge of the award-winning Medical Center, The Courtship of Eddie's Father, GE Monogram Documentaries, and several syndicated talk shows. He produced Assignment Vienna, with Robert Conrad, an eight-hour miniseries filmed on location in Vienna, Austria for MGM-TV and the ABC Television Network.

Graves was the executive producer for critically acclaimed Picnic at Hanging Rock, a successful feature film. He was also responsible for the BBC's feature Storm Boy, the re-editing of Sunday Too Far Away, and a TV feature movie, The Sound of Love.

Later, Graves taught at Central Missouri State University, retiring after 10 years as professor emeritus of mass communication.

Come enjoy the merriment, music and wisdom of Sire John the Barb and the many other talented performing of Music and Muses, Saturday, June 17.

Admission is $8 for adults, $4 for young people, 18 and under. Tickets will be available at the door.

Please bring a dessert to share, if you wish. Volunteers are needed to help with setup, cleanup and refreshments.

Pagosa Lakes Clubhouse is located at 230 Port Ave. Take U.S. 160 to Vista Boulevard, turn left on Port.

Music and Muses is produced by Elation Center for the Arts, a local 501(c) 3 nonprofit arts organization. Through community concerts and educational programs, ECA strives to serve through artistic excellence. ECA's goal is to create a permanent cultural arts facility in Pagosa Springs. For more information, see on the Web or call 731-3117.

'Mostly Martha' next for film society

The Pagosa Springs Film Society will screen and discuss Sandra Nettlebeck's "Mostly Martha," at 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 30.

This 2001 German film (with English subtitles) has been a favorite at numerous international film festivals.

In a German restaurant, Chef Martha Klein is the undisputed supreme ruler of the kitchen staff. Her life is firmly centered around cooking, which takes on an obsessive level with stubborn single-mindedness. That suddenly changes when her sister dies in a car accident, leaving her 8-year-old daughter, Lina. Martha takes her niece in, and while making enquiries for her estranged father, she struggles to care for this stubbornly headstrong child.

Meanwhile at work a new chef is hired on and Martha feels threatened by this unorthodox intruder. The pressures of both her private and work life combine to create a situation that will fundamentally call her attitudes and life choices into question while these interlopers into her life begin profoundly to change it.

The meeting will be held in the Pagosah Unitarian Universalist Fellowship Hall, Unit B-15 in Greenbriar Plaza. Turn east on Greenbrier Drive off of North Pagosa by the fire station, then left into the back parking lot and look for the big sign. A suggested $3 donation will benefit the Friends of the Library.

Boosters begin rehearsals for summer musical

By Dale Morris

Special to The PREVIEW

Pagosa Springs Music Boosters had a great turnout recently during open auditions for their summer musical, "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat," by Andrew Lloyd Webber.

The musical comedy uses various genres of music style, humorous lyrics by Tim Rice and other creative techniques in a spoof of the story of Jacob and his sons and their lives in the lands of Canaan and Egypt.

The role of Joseph is being played by Matthew Brunson who, although a newcomer to Pagosa, is an experienced and professional performer. The Narrator is being played by Danae Holloman, a Pagosa favorite, now majoring in music at Fort Lewis College.

Others in the cast include Jim Morris, Dave Armbrecht, Michael DeWinter, Tiffany Brunson, Honor Nash-Putnam, Lily Hester, Kailee Kenyon and Shane Tuller.

Cast as "brothers" are Roger Jensen, Tim McAlister, Bob Nordmann, Joe Nanus, Harvey Schwartz, Sue Diffee, Darran Garcia, Crissy Ferguson, Ricky Peterson and Jesse Morris.

"Wives" include Jessica Espinosa, Toni Tuller, Johanna Patterson, Betty Schwicker, Rita Jensen, Anna Ball, Quanisha Tuller, Ami Harbison and Becca Stephens.

"Joseph" is a challenging production that incorporates over 20 musical numbers. Our cast will be rehearsing steadily over the next six weeks to bring this show to the Pagosa stage with heart, soul and excitement.

We open July 6 in the Pagosa Springs High School auditorium.

For further information, call Dale Morris at 731-3370, or check out the Web site at

New ECA garden club

By Carla Roberts

Special to The PREVIEW

Do you love the beauty of flowers but are new to our mountain climate and wonder how to plant a successful garden?

Have you wanted to do some simple landscaping to enhance the curb appeal of your home? Are you one of the millions of Americans who chose gardening as a rewarding hobby and wish to learn more about tough perennial plants that can give three-season color in our harsh climate? Are you gardening on a tight budget and want to prevent costly mistakes?

Elation Center for the Arts has a new program that can help you create a beautiful yard. Based on 10 years of experimental gardening in Pagosa Springs at 7,500 feet, this new course, called "Three Season Color," is a do-it-yourself landscaping primer that can guide you through the steps of successful landscape design from start to colorful finish. Taught in two-hour weekly segments on site, we will have a hands-on approach to the wonderful world of plants in Pagosa. Instructor Carla Roberts has a naturalistic approach to garden design. From soil enrichment, site evaluation and design to plant selection and care, the focus of the "Three Season Color" course is on flowering perennials and bulbs.

The first five-week segment begins at 9 a.m. Thursday, June 1, and continues on consecutive Thursdays in June. Each two-hour course requires payment of a $10 fee. Those interested may register by calling Carla Roberts at 731-3117 to receive directions.

Former atheist to speak at seminar

By Dorman Diller

Special to The PREVIEW

John Clayton, a former atheist, will be in Pagosa Springs at the community center June 9-10 to present a free lecture series on the topic "Does God Exist?"

Clayton is a committed Christian with a master's degree in chemistry, psychometry, geology, and earth science and a bachelor's degree in physics and math. A retired science and math teacher in Indiana, he has been named Teacher of The Year several times. He travels around the United States and overseas asking people in his lectures to consider the scientific evidence for the existence of God.

In Clayton's lectures, he simply asks people to examine the scientific evidence for proof of the existence of God. No one will be asked for money. No collections will be taken. No registration lists will be compiled. Personal privacy is assured. He also produces a video/CD series, tapes and publishes books. All are available for free. For more information you can visit Clayton's Web site at

His free seminar at the community center is open to everyone in the community. Two sessions will be presented 7-9 p.m. Friday and Saturday evenings, each followed by a question-and-answer period. There will be a special session for grade school children and their parents 10 a.m.-noon Saturday at the community center. A special session for teenagers and their parents will be held 3-5 p.m. Saturday.

John Hornecker to speak at UU service

On Sunday, May 28, the topic for the Pagosah Unitarian Universalist service is "Living Life in Alignment with Our Soul." The speaker will be Pagosa resident John Hornecker, author, teacher, colleague of the Creative Education Foundation, and networking leader with people in different countries who share an interest in spiritual transformation.

It is his opinion that "Before coming into embodiment, our soul, in conjunction with our spiritual mentors, developed an overall life plan. Also, agreements were worked out with other souls who play important roles in our life experiences. As our human life progresses from birth through childhood and into adulthood, our daily experiences seem to unfold with a high degree of spontaneity. And yet, if we examine our life more carefully, the coincidences and synchronicities that move our life in one direction or another clearly seem to be orchestrated in mystical and meaningful ways.

"The intent of this presentation is to delve more deeply into the fascinating interplay between our soul's destiny path, and our human choices and related experiences."

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


Chuck Bob at the Movies

Two new releases: one a fine family film, the other...

By Charles Streetman

PREVIEW Columnist

This week I took a look at two of last week's new releases. The first is an endearing family film, while the second is a crass, obscene comedy with a little more going for it than most films of a similar tenor.

First up is the family film "Duma," the incredible true story of an orphaned cheetah cub that's taken in and cared for by a young boy named Xan (Alexander Michaletos, in his first film) and his family on their farm in South Africa.

Xan and the cub, now given the name of Duma, form a strong friendship over time, but Xan's father (Campbell Scott, "The Exorcism of Emily Rose") tells him that they will have to return Duma into the wild now that he's big enough to fend for himself. However, tragedy befalls Xan's family, forcing them to lease their farm and move to the city. Xan begins to understand the only place for Duma to go is back into the wild, so he takes the fully-grown cheetah and travels across the continent to return the cat to his rightful home.

"Duma" was directed by Carroll Ballard, who has had extensive work with this particular genre of family entertainment. His past work includes family classics such as the 1979 film adaptation of Walter Farley's "The Black Stallion," 1983's "Never Cry Wolf" and 1996's "Fly Away Home." Ballard's skills are at their finest with "Duma." Rather than presenting a cutesy children's story, Ballard has crafted a genuinely heartfelt coming-of-age tale set amidst a grand and fascinating adventure.

The film itself was based on the book "How it Was With Dooms," written by the true life Xan Hopcraft and his mother, Carol Cawthra Hopcraft. The book was adapted to the screen by Karen Janszen ("Free Willy 2") and Mark St. Germain (his first film) and, despite their liberties, provides an entertaining, yet serious and compelling story that rarely loses touch with reality.

The only downside to "Duma" has little to do with the movie itself; rather, it is the lack of special features available on the DVD. All the disc offers are a few extended scenes and the theatrical trailer - that's it. It would have been more exciting had they included a featurette on the true story behind the film, or information about he book on which the film was based.

Despite the DVD's special features shortcomings, "Duma" is one of a kind. It is a family film the quality of which surpasses that typically seen in many Hollywood productions. It provides a wonderful story, endearing and entertaining to both parents and children alike. Duma should not be missed!

The other film I took a look at from last week's new releases is the comedy "The Ringer." The film stars Johnny Knoxville ("Jackass: The Movie") and is, overall, in very bad taste and is very politically incorrect, but I can't help noting that on some levels it's actually funnier and more enjoyable than other recent obscene comedies. I think the film's success has something to do with its executive producers being the infamous Farrelly Brothers, Bobby and Peter, who's past film credits would include "There's Something About Mary," "Me, Myself, and Irene, " and "Kingpin." Although the Farrelly's are only credited for coming up with the money for the film, I can't help but wonder if they had a bigger hand in this movie than that of financiers. More on that later.

The movie is about Steve (Knoxville), who demands a promotion from his boss. His boss tells him he can start by firing Stavi, the kind spirited (if not a little inept) janitor. Steve feels terrible for Stavi and offers him a job mowing the lawn at his condo. And now for the Farrelly touch: Stavi loses three of his fingers while checking the lawnmower blade while the mower is still running (OK, so he's really inept).

While at the hospital, the doctor tells Steve they can save Stavi's fingers and sew them back on, but the cost of the surgery is steep and Steve's at a loss as to how to come up with the money. Enter Uncle Gary (Brian Cox, "X2: X-Men United"). To call him a lowlife would be an understatement. Steve asks him for help with the money, but Gary cannot provide, in that he is in debt with the mob. So Uncle Gary comes up with the idea that Steve should fake being mentally challenged, so he can rig the Special Olympics and bet on him to win the games. That is just plain low.

Steve at first refuses to go through with it, but eventually convinces himself to do it for his friend. So he poses as mentally ill, and his uncle enters him in the Special Olympics under the name of Jeffy Dahmor (get it?).

The first half of the movie is tedious (almost unbearable) and will undoubtedly test many viewers' patience with the rough approach to Steve's interactions with the other Special Olympians. The film improves in the second half and takes a turn for the better, not much better, but better still.

The movie handles its disabled characters affectionately. They don't end up as crude comic relief nor do they come off as defenseless victims. A lot of the time, they end up having more common sense than some of the "mentally sound" characters. They actually catch on to Steve's act pretty quickly and at first are outraged, but after he explains the situation to them they understand his desperation and find that he might be able to help them compete as well. One of the athletes in the games is Jimmy (Leonard Flowers, in his first film), a reigning champion of the Special Olympics who's more egotistic and self-centered than anyone else competing. The other athletes are convinced that Steve can beat him and end his winning streak.

It's because the disabled supporting characters are treated with respect and affection that I've come to think the Farrelly Brothers had a bigger hand in this movie. In their past films, they've always had at least one disabled character, either mentally or physically, who ended up playing a strong supporting role. I think Peter and Bobby gave a number of tips to first-time director Barry W. Blastein and writer Ricky Blitt while this movie was in production.

Would I recommend "The Ringer?" Not to just anyone. I think it's more suitable for those who enjoy, and are accustomed, to crass comedies. It could have been a lot better if the Farrellys were completely in charge of the movie, but "Ringer" is a step above some of the other crude comedies out there.

Included on the DVD are a number of special features. As expected, there are the usual commentaries from the film's director, writer and producer, in addition to 16 deleted scenes, a Special Olympics featurette, a message from Special Olympics Chairman Tim Shriver and more.

Local Chatter

Tales from the ICU, ideas for the new hospital

By Kate Terry

PREVIEW Columnist

Hospitals have a purpose.

You go there and they send you home.

I got sent home in nine days - one day early.

As I wrote a few weeks ago, it is good that the new Mercy Hospital is being built, for the present one is falling apart. A nice thing is that the new one is about 30 minutes from Pagosa Springs.

I've heard that when the present Mercy Hospital was built, the rooms were all to be single-occupancy rooms. Now the ICU rooms are the only single-bed rooms.

When I was in ICU, I was fine, but when they moved me from ICU, I had a roommate. She was special: a Durango school teacher, with four daughters and lots of friends and when all her visitors and all mine crowded into the room, it was a bit full. When my surgeon came to see me - and to dismiss me - he had to squeeze through. But all was civilized.

One of the aides and I made a wish list for the new Mercy. Besides new TVs, I want lap tables that lower more.

One of the surprises at Mercy was that they can give shampoos. Soap isn't used - they use a chemical. The aide puts the cap on the head and massages the head. When finished, the hair is wet and it has to be dried. For sure, I'd pass on this accommodation if a next time arose, for I believe I liked my hair oily.

One aide was a man. He was good, only he insisted I have a shampoo and then told me doing mine was his first effort. And it had to have been. He placed the cap, wiggled his fingers a few times and removed the cap. And he didn't comb my hair.

As a nurse told me, there were a few good aides. Well, I had all kinds. One in particular was a howl. The story goes like this:

The nurses and aides were giving me light doses of morphine, an idea I didn't like, but I was assured that small doses of a pain killer are best. I'd had these several nights when I had ugly dreams. There were a bunch of plaster of Paris objects in ugly, depressing colors. The next morning, I told the nurse no more - that I'd had hallucinations. I was miserable.

Anyway, the next night, I asked the aide to pull the curtain so that the light from the front desk didn't shine in my eyes. Now I don't know what I said for her to misunderstand me, for she said, "Do you want it out?"

"No," I said, "just pull it."

"Do you want it in?," she asked, and I said, "No, I want it pulled."

"Are you hallucinating?," she asked. "No, all I want is the curtain pulled so it doesn't get in my eyes."

Now, surely, the point of this story is to be careful what you say to someone in the hospital.

And that aide was surely not one of the good aides.

The thing I gained from this hospital experience was patience, which reminds me of the poem I learned in college:

Patience is a virtue,

Possess it if you can,

Seldom found in women,

And never found in man.

This woman's patience is blooming.

Fun on the Run

A tired and frazzled homemaker opened the front door of her home to find a young minister from the neighborhood, who said, "I'm collecting donations for the new children's home we're building. I hope you'll give what you can."

"To be sure," said the beleaguered woman. "I'll give you two boys, two girls, or one of each."

Community Center News

Your community center is a busy place

By Becky Herman

PREVIEW Columnist

Take a glance at a typical week at the community center.

Last week saw three different Sunday church services, a Democratic Party Central Committee meeting, two sessions of Chamber of Commerce hospitality training, drug and alcohol education, three hip hop dance classes sponsored by the teen center, a Randall Davis drawing class, the watercolor club, a TOPS tourism meeting, a Spanish Fiesta club meeting, an arthritis class, the May dance for adults, an eBay club meeting, a League of Women Voters meeting, a Photoshop class - and this is to mention only some of the events.

And then there are the events which happen every week: yoga, sewing, basketball, volleyball, Weight Watchers, computer classes and help sessions, two different bridge groups, the senior walking program and line dancing.

Whew! No wonder we're kept hopping.

With all this going on, Mercy has asked that we keep careful records at the center, including how many people use the center in a given time period and how many hours the center is used. In other words, we need to gather some statistics. This kind of information is especially useful when grant writing time rolls around. Let us know if you can help us with this project. Some computer skills are helpful but not absolutely necessary.

Arts and crafts show

The time has arrived.

Tomorrow, May 26, and Saturday, May 27, is the community center's second annual Spring Arts and Crafts Show.

Vendors are set to display their handmade items, and the center's multi-purpose room is being made ready for the show. Plan to come to the center between 3 and 6 p.m. tomorrow and from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. The work of local artists and artisans will be on display and for sale. We are planning to offer chili dogs, nachos, desserts, and hot and cold drinks for sale as well. On Saturday morning, there will also be homemade muffins.

Proceeds from this show will be used to benefit community center programs and to defray operations costs.

Foodies gathering

Our first foodies gathering, featuring special appetizers, is 6-8 p.m. Wednesday. This is an opportunity to show off and share your expertise in different types of food prep. Call first to R.S.V.P., 264- 4152, and talk to Michelle or Becky. This is another program sponsored by the center. We'll provide dessert and beverages.

Patriotic sing-along

Yes, it is coming soon. Friday, June 30, is an evening to remember and honor our soldiers. Aside from the sing-along we will have a power point presentation of our soldiers - those deceased, our veterans and those on active duty. We are requesting people submit photos, preferably digital, so we can include them in this presentation. Also, this is a dessert potluck and a prelude to the Fourth of July weekend celebration. The Chamber of Commerce will provide flags for all in attendance. Call Mercy at 264-4152, or Andy Fautheree, veterans service officer, at 731-3837 for more information.

Community center dances

Thanks to all who attended the May dance last Friday and many thanks to our volunteers under the supervision of our dance volunteer coordinator, Siri Schuchardt.

We also had new volunteer bartenders - Soledad Estrada and John Talbot. The Colorado Mounted Rangers were present to keep everyone safe. Well done again folks. Your many hours of hard work are very much appreciated.

Dance with the music by the High Rollers Band from Durango 7-11 p.m. Friday, June 23. A catered Mexican food buffet will be available. Mark your calendars and stay tuned for more details.

Photoshop classes

Bruce Andersen's next Photoshop class will take place June 5, 12 and 19. Jot down these dates if you are signed up. Remember, registration is confirmed only after payment has been made.

eBay club

The next meeting of the new eBay club will be held at the center at 9 a.m. Thursday, June 15. Anyone interested in buying and/or selling on eBay is welcome to attend. Call Ben Bailey at 264-0293 or e-mail him at if you plan to attend. This club is not affiliated with or endorsed by eBay Inc.

Line dancing

This fun program is becoming more popular each week. Twenty-plus people joined last Monday's class and guess what? - nine men attended the class. This was the highest number of males in attendance thus far. Congratulations, Gerry Potticary, for a great program.

Gerry is so kind and generous with her time that she even comes as early as 10 a.m. for the "very beginners." Those who need to practice and learn new steps come at 10:30. This comment comes from Gerry: "We are currently featuring the Electric Slide, Tush Push, Black Velvet, New York New York, a waltz and a cha cha. No one remembers it all, but we have a lot of laughs. Come join us every Monday. If you need a little preliminary coaching, come early at ten."

Upcoming events

The community center needs volunteers for all three of the following events. Please let us know if you can contribute costumes, your time, or your expertise in other areas, such as decorating or distributing tickets or flyers. The center needs your participation to make these efforts successful. Please consider helping.

- Aug. 11 - Around the World in Pagosa. This event will feature a parade of traditional costumes and tastes of food from different countries. We need men, women, and children to participate. Volunteers will each represent a country and display the traditional costume of that country. Others will prepare and sell foods that represent the different countries. More details to follow; volunteers may call Mercy now at 264-4152, Ext. 22.

- Oct. 21 - Hunters' Ball. This will be a dinner and dance fund-raiser for all, but especially for hunters. All kinds of volunteers are needed, such as women dressed in early 1800s costumes; groups to perform short, funny melodramas; or businesses to sell souvenirs and gifts.

- December - Festival of Trees. We are looking for individuals, families or groups to sponsor trees which will be decorated and displayed for a week at the center; the trees will be displayed for the public. There will be a nominal entry fee for each tree. At the end of the week, all trees will be auctioned off and the money will go to a non-profit organization, chosen by the tree's sponsor.

Computer lab news

OK, a little bit of good news.

One of our pieces of network equipment might still work.

We're talking nicely to it with great hopes that it will talk back. Thanks again to Musetta Wollenweber of the senior center who has generously agreed to share her Internet connection with the community center while we recover from our recent network problem. While our content filter is being reconfigured, we have been forced to suspend use of the computer lab by minors. Adults are, of course, still welcome. Our hope is that all will be well in another week or so.

Center hours

The community center is open 8 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10-4 Saturday.

Activities this week

Today - Over-the-Hill Hoopsters, 8-9 a.m.; yoga, 11 a.m.-noon; TOPS Public Tourism meeting, 4:30-6 p.m.; Teen Center open, 4-8 p.m.; High Peak volleyball practice, 6-8 p.m.; Photoshop class, 7-8 p.m.

May 26 - Senior bridge, 12:30-4 p.m.; Teen Center open, 2-8 p.m.; arts and crafts show, 3-6 p.m.

May 27 - Arts and crafts show, 9 a.m.-4 p.m.; sewing class, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.; Teen Center open, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.

May 28 - Church of Christ Sunday service, 10 a.m.-noon; Grace Evangelical Free Church service, 10 a.m.-noon; High Roads Baptist Church, noon-2 p.m.; High Peak volleyball practice, 4-6 p.m.

May 29 - Line dancing, 10-noon; senior walk, 11:15-11;35 a.m.; senior bridge, 12:30-4 p.m.; Teen Center open, 4-8 p.m.

May 30 - Over-the-Hill Hoopsters, 8-9 a.m.; beginning computing class, 10 a.m.-noon; senior walk, 11:15-11:35 a.m.; Teen Center open, 4-8 p.m.; High Peak volleyball practice, 6-8 p.m.; Archuleta Democratic Party meeting, 6:30-7:30 p.m.

May 31 - Beginning computing class for seniors, 10 a.m.-noon; Wednesday bridge club, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.; preschool play group, 10 a.m.-noon; Teen Center open, 4-8 p.m.; Weight Watchers, 4:45-6:45 p.m.; an evening with the foodies, 6-8 p.m.; Church of Christ Bible study, 7-8 p.m.

June 1 - Over-the-Hill Hoopsters, 8-9 a.m.; yoga, 11 a.m.-noon; Computer Q&A session with Becky, 1-4 p.m.; alcohol training class-Chamber of Commerce, 1-5 p.m.; USFS orientation class, 1-5 p.m.; Teen Center open, 4-8 p.m.; SJOC monthly meeting, 6:30-9 p.m.; Photoshop class, 7-8 p.m.

Need a place to have a party or meeting? We have very affordable rooms for small, mid-size and large groups. A catering kitchen is also available. Tables, chairs, a portable stage, a dance floor and audiovisual equipment are available, too. The center is located at 451 Hot Springs Blvd. Call 264-4152.

Senior News

Help The Den honor our veterans

By Jim Pearson

SUN Columnist

More than 3 million people, including veterans of every war and conflict - from the Revolutionary War to the war in Iraq - are honored by burial in 138 national cemeteries, according to the Department of Veteran's Affairs.

Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, is a day of remembrance for those who have died in our nation's service. Memorial Day was officially proclaimed by Gen. John Logan, national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic on May 5, 1868. The first observance of Memorial Day took place 25 days later, when flowers were placed on the graves of Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery.

This year, The Den has been asked to participate in placing American flags at the grave markers of our veterans at Hilltop Cemetery on Sunday, May 28. Interested seniors should show up at the entrance to the cemetery at 4 p.m. to receive assignments. This is a good way for us to show support for our veterans who have served us well.

Driving with arthritis

Driving is a complex skill. It takes a combination of mental and physical ability to operate a vehicle safely.

Drivers with arthritis may be at risk of being in an accident because their ability to react to emergencies is restricted because of their arthritic condition. Arthritis can make your joints swollen and stiff. This can limit how far you can bend or move your shoulders, hands, head and neck. This can make it harder to grasp or turn the steering wheel, apply the brake and gas pedals, put on your safety belt or look over your shoulder to check your blind spot.

Your driving ability with arthritis depends on which joints are affected. Some medications used to treat arthritis conditions can make you tired. Consult your doctor about prescribing medications that don't cause sleepiness if needed. Staying fit and active can benefit your driving ability. If your arthritis condition continues to affect your driving ability, your doctor may be able to refer you to a rehabilitation center where specialists may offer training to improve your driving ability. There are devices, when installed on your car that can make driving easier for those with an arthritic condition. Last, but not least, always wear your seatbelt when you are driving or riding in a car. If arthritis makes it difficult for you to use your seatbelt, there is equipment available to make buckling up much easier. If driving has become too difficult for you, call The Den to find out about our transportation services.

Birthday celebration

If you are age 60 or over and your birthday is in May, come on down to The Den Friday, May 26, for a delicious lunch and celebrate your birthday. Archuleta Seniors, Inc. has graciously agreed to pay for a portion of your birthday meal, so it will only cost $1 for a great lunch and birthday cake.

Clash Day

Friday, May 26 is Clash Day. Wear all your crazy stripes, plaids and colors that don't match. You might look a little crazy on the street, but you will fit in perfectly at The Den.

Prizes will be given for the most outrageous ensemble of clashing elements. Go through your wardrobe and look for clothes that don't go together, and create your award-winning outfit for The Den's Clash Day.

Ombudsman visit

Ombudsmen are dedicated to enhancing the lives of long-term care residents. They are an advocate for residents' complaints and provide information to the public.

Barbara Scoville, who is our ombudsman representative, will be at The Den May 31 at 11:30 a.m. to give a short talk, enjoy a meal with us and provide time for those who need to speak with her after lunch. This is a great opportunity to discuss care issues of an elder loved one.

Rafting the San Juan

The Den will have some adventure Wednesday, June 7.

We are going boating down the scenic San Juan River through Pagosa. This will be a two-hour rafting trip with life jacket, transportation and guide included for a cost of $25 per person. If you have always wanted to try whitewater rafting, this is a great beginner trip. The last day to sign up for the trip at The Den is Friday, June 2.

Ice cream social

We are ready for the heat and the sun, and with that goes everyone's favorite dessert - ice cream.

The Den will host an ice cream social Friday, June 2, after lunch to start the month off right. We will provide the ice cream and a few basic toppings, and all you need is 50 cents to get a one-scoop sundae. To make it a little more fun and decadent, bring your favorite topping to share with others and let's pile the goodies on.

Computer lab news

The next beginning classes will start the first week of June and last through July. The Tuesday class is open to anyone; the Wednesday class is for seniors.

Currently, the waiting list has enough people on it to fill both the Tuesday and Wednesday classes. However, it sometimes happens that those who requested space in one of the classes are unable to come. Call and leave your name and phone number in case the community center has an opening.

An intermediate class is now in the works. The schedule is being finalized. It is anticipated that some of the same topics taught in the beginning series will be covered; however, this will be a more detailed course, taught by Becky Herman. For example, the beginning class covers only the basics of e-mail; the intermediate group will focus on e-mail attachments, provider options and settings, and e-mail problems such as privacy, spam and phishing.

Call the community center for details at 264-4152.

Senior discounts

Join hundreds of other seniors in our community taking advantage of the many discounts available through local merchants by joining Archuleta Seniors, Inc.

Memberships are available for folks age 55 and over and can be purchased at The Den for $5 Mondays and Fridays from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 9-11. No memberships are sold Thursdays.

Not only will you receive generous discounts from local businesses, but you'll be eligible for our Mystery Trip program and other trips in addition to discounts at such senior activities as Oktoberfest. Membership also entitles those who meet annual income guidelines to scholarships for eyeglasses, hearing aids, dental, prescription drugs and medical equipment. Your membership also entitles you to a great discount on the purchase of a dental water jet and electric toothbrush. Archuleta Seniors, Inc. even offers financial assistance for medical shuttles to Durango handled by The Den.

This is the best discount program in town, and a great way to help our senior community. Sign up now and acquire the benefits for 2006.

June activities

Sign up for June activities sponsored by The Den. You can sign up now for the June Mystery Trip (must be a member of Archuleta Seniors, Inc.), river rafting and a Sky Ute Casino trip. June activities also include the ice cream social, Father's Day celebration, and our Picnic in the Park returns.

It's another fun packed summer, so come to The Den and join in.

Home-delivered meals

The den provides home-delivered meals to qualifying homebound individuals who want the benefits of a nutritional lunch. The Den's caring volunteers deliver the meals to homes Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays while taking the time to check in with the individuals. The appetizing lunches are served hot and ready to eat. Whether you want a meal delivered one or four times a week, we can accommodate your needs. For more information, call Musetta at 264-2167.

Are you looking for a way to volunteer some time to your community and make an immediate impact on someone's life? The Den has an opportunity for you to make new friends while you donate one lunch hour per week to the home-delivered meal program for our senior citizens.

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

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

Oktoberfest volunteers

Archuleta Seniors, Inc. is looking for volunteers to help with Oktoberfest.

Volunteers are needed to serve on committees charged with making this the best Oktoberfest ever in Pagosa Springs. We need a person interested in teaching the polka to adults, and the chicken dance to elementary-age children. We are also looking for committee help with the program, food preparation, food serving, etc.

This is the largest fund-raiser for Archuleta Seniors, Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to helping our seniors. For more information, contact me at The Den by calling 264-2167.

Thank you

The Den thanks Marilyn Moorehead for bringing magazines in to share with our folks. Donations of puzzles, magazines, books and clothes for seniors are always appreciated.

Emergency evacuation

Homebound seniors should have an evacuation plan that includes any help you would need to vacate your house. Get assistance in developing such a plan. Musetta can help you get started. Call or visit her at The Den.

RACOA board member

The Regional Advisory Council on Aging (RACOA), which is making an effort to form a more diverse board, is seeking a senior to represent the Latino community of Archuleta County on the board of directors for RACOA.

This is a volunteer position, and is one of three members who represent our county. The RACOA offers advice and recommendations to the Area Agency on Aging Board of Directors relative to a four-year senior services plan, which is annually updated and revised. We are looking for a person to help us with our outreach effort concerning senior services and programs for our Latino community. If you are interested in serving, contact Musetta at The Den.

Senior of the Week

We congratulate Rosemary LaVigne as Senior of the Week. Rosemary will enjoy free lunches all week. We also congratulate Carol Cash in Arboles. She will enjoy free lunches at Arboles Meal Day for the month of June.

Activities at a glance

Friday, May 26 - Clash Day; Qi Gong, 10 a.m.; gym walk, 11:15 a.m.; Bridge 4 Fun, 12:30 p.m.

Monday, May 29 - Memorial Day.

Tuesday, May 30 - Yoga in Motion, 10 a.m.; gym walk, 11:15 a.m.; canasta, 1 p.m.

Wednesday, May 31 - Basic Computer, 10 a.m.; ombudsman, 11:30 a.m.

Thursday, June 1 - Arboles Meal Day and ice cream social.

Friday, June 2 - Qi Gong, 10 a.m.; gym walk, 11:15 a.m.; veterans' services, noon; Bridge 4 Fun, 12:30 p.m.


Suggested donation $3 for ages 60-plus and kids 12 and under; all others $5.

Salad bar every day - 11:30 a.m. Unavailable in Arboles.

Friday, May 26 - Beef with peppers, steamed rice, orange spiced carrots, half a grapefruit and whole wheat bread.

Monday, May 29 - Memorial Day, no meal served.

Tuesday, May 30 - Bratwurst on a bun with sauerkraut, Harvard beets and peaches.

Wednesday, May 31 - Italian sausage in marinara sauce, spaghetti noodles, steamed squash, plums and garlic roll.

Thursday, June 1 - No meal served.

Friday, June 2 - Chicken stew with vegetables, mini corn cobettes, pears and wheat crackers.

Veteran's Corner

Area Memorial Day activities Monday

By Andy Fautherlee

PREVIEW Columnist

The Pagosa Springs Mullins-Nickerson American Legion Post 108 will be observing Memorial Day activities Monday, May 29.

Beginning ceremonies will take place at the Legion building (on Hermosa Street, next to Town Park) starting at 9 a.m. with a Call To Colors and a brief ceremony.

This will be followed at 10 a.m. by an extended program conducted at Hilltop Cemetery. War dead will be recognized and a wreath placed at both flag poles.

The American Legion works throughout the year to replace and install flag holders on veterans' graves. Flags will be placed on each grave for Memorial Day weekend. They will be place at 4 p.m. Sunday, May 28, and will be taken down Monday, May 29, at the same time.

Veterans honored

I'm sure members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars will also be participating in Memorial Day activities.

Our community is fortunate to have these two fine veterans' organizations supporting our local veterans and activities. I work with both veterans' groups to apply for Colorado Veterans Trust Fund Grants. Through these grants over the last several years we have been successful in obtaining vehicles for veterans to use as transportation to their VA health care appointments. This past year, the VFW was very fortunate to obtain a special VTF Grant to assist with fuel and accommodation costs when traveling to Albuquerque VAMC and other VA facilities.

I am working with the American Legion this year to obtain a grant for a new vehicle to replace one of our previous grant vehicles with high mileage, as well as for more fuel and accommodation assistance money. We have just about exhausted the VFW grant funds obtained last year, and are seeking more VTF grant money for the 2006-2007 Colorado fiscal year.

VA ID cards

I would also like to remind all of our veterans to be sure and obtain a new VA ID card when they travel to the Albuquerque VAMC, if they have not already done so.

The new VA ID cards are similar to the old ones except there is no Social Security number showing on the card, for security and privacy reasons. The VA ID cards are only issued by the Albuquerque VAMC, in the Benefits and Eligibility office, for our area.

If your VA ID card shows your Social Security number, you need to obtain a new card. Almost all VAHC facilities now require you to show your VA ID card for services and proof of veteran status.


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

Durango VA Clinic

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

Further information

For information on these and other veterans' benefits, call or stop by the Archuleta County Veterans Service Office located at 46 Eaton Drive, Suite 7 (behind City Market). The office number is 731-3837, the fax number is 731-3879, cell number is 946-6648, and e-mail is The office is open from 8 to 4, Monday through Friday. Bring your DD Form 214 (Discharge) for application for VA programs, and for filing in the VSO office.

Library News

Summer's coming to our library

By Christine Eleanor Anderson

PREVIEW Columnist

Jazz in the Parking Lot, Geology with Glenn, Summer Reading Program for the kids, lots of new books of all kinds and CDs, books on tape and other good stuff for traveling or lazing by the pool

Jazz in the Parking Lot

John Graves has graciously and generously agreed to arrange for, and play in, our first Jazz in the Parking Lot series.

He and his group will offer free concerts on the last four Thursday evenings in August at 7:30 p.m., after the library closes.

This is our own little Pagosa version of the free concerts at the LA County Art Museum, one night a week, all summer. We'd love for people to bring picnics and blankets and enjoy this simple pleasure: great music and a view of the mountains after they come for their weekly library checkout "fix."

We are going to precede this series with a History of Jazz course over a period of eight weeks. John has also agreed to come and be a resource for this film and reading series.

Watch for dates and join us.

Pagosa Reads!

Glenn Raby, Forest Service geologist, Chimney Rock guide and president of the library board of trustees, will offer another of his mini courses on local geology in collaboration with the library and the Interpretive Alliance. We are delighted he will be giving us this chance to absorb some knowledge about our own rocky scene.

The Chimney Rock tour that Glenn will give Saturday, June 3 - the last event in the Pagosa Reads! program for this year - still has some room for more attendees. Call the library at 264-2208 to be registered for the event, or sign up at the library circulation desk when you come in.

Volunteer orientation

This will be held at 10 a.m. Tuesday, June 6, at the library.

We can use lots and lots of help for all of our events, planning for the gala Friends of the Library Annual Book Sale on Sept. 8 and 9, and "Paws, Claws, Scales and Tales," the Summer Reading Program, as well as all of our usual library activities.

Summer Reading Program

Barb Draper and her volunteers are starting this library program on June 27. It will go through Aug. 4 this year.

There will be events and readings for all kids, preschool through sixth grade, 10 a.m. to noon Tuesday and Friday mornings. Bring the kids to meet live animals at the library, play games, enter contests to earn prizes, and learn about all kinds of animals - wild, farm and pets.

Packets for registration for the program are available at the library desk.

Summer reading, listening

And, of course, we know that you want to walk into the library and find lots of fun, interesting reading and listening this summer.

We have ordered all kinds of intriguing CDs. Classics like "Northanger Abbey," Jane Austen's fierce parody of the late 18th century's Gothic-style fainting heroines and haunted medieval buildings; "Ethan Frome," one of my personal favorites by Edith Wharton (talk about a difficult family scene!); and the lovely Nebraska farm novel by Willa Cather, "My Antonia," are coming.

And, on the books-on-tape front, you are going to find a little bit of everything. Historical fiction like "Mercury Visions of Louis Daguerre," and "One Thousand White Women," about the white women who were recruited by the U.S. Government to intermarry with the Cheyenne Indians are on order. So are westerns by William Johnstone, thrillers by Dean Koontz and Douglas Preston and riotous English humor by one of my own favorites, P.G. Wodehouse. "When Will Jesus Bring the Pork Chops," by George Carlin is coming in too.

Books, books, books. On the really heavy side, we have "God Created the Integers: the Mathematical Breakthroughs that Changed History," edited by Stephen Hawking. My own "must read" list includes "Seeing," a political novel about everyone in the world going blind, by Nobel Prize winner Jose Saramago. People who want to travel from their deck chair, will enjoy Frances Mayes' "A Year in the World." "Da Vinci Code" enthusiasts will want to read "The Templar Legacy," a novel by Steve Berry. I am intrigued by a young adult novel, "The Keys to the Kingdom," by Garth Nix. He won the Aurealis Award for Best Fantasy Novel, Best Young Adult Novel and Best Children's Novel all in the same year. "The Swamp: the Everglades, Florida, and the politics of Paradise," by Michael Grunwald, will give food for thought to people in the area who are contemplating issues of local development.

Finally, gardeners amongst us should plant their eyes on some of my favorites that are in: "Seeds of Change," "The Botany of Desire," and more mundanely, Jeavons' and Cox', "The Sustainable Vegetable Garden."

Bombed out

By Henry Buslepp

Special to The PREVIEW

"Dark Sun: The Making of the Hydrogen Bomb," by Richard Rhodes, Simon and Schuster, New York, 1995.

The title of this book, "Dark Sun: The Making of the Hydrogen Bomb," might mislead you if you were just interested in the H-Bomb. It is far more than this. This is an almost day-to-day account running the gamut from the theoretical to the actual, then to the consequences that almost every society in the world has experienced as a result of science for the sake of science being corrupted by political will.

I felt that the story of the Bomb was almost incidental. The real story was about all of the people who were involved in the process, which spanned most of the 20th century. These were scientists, politicians, spies, diplomats, and military zealots as well as bystanders who were simply there and caught up in the process.

In the beginning there were only the scientists, strange types in their day who sought only to unravel the mystery of the atom. When it was realized what power lay in fission, splitting the atom, politicians and militarists entered the picture. The Nazis were very interested in the early 1930s, but the time needed to develop an atomic bomb didn't fit their timetable. Their interest, though, sparked that of the British, French and Russians as well as President Roosevelt, who agonized in isolationist America because he foresaw the coming conflict.

Now, enter the spies. At first, they were not interested in military secrets at all. In the United States, these people were mainly lower middle class Jews who led disheartening lives. The Great Depression had proved to them that capitalism was both a fraud and a failure, especially since the great industrial might and conservatism of America wasn't able to reverse the economic chaos. They embraced socialism as the answer, particularly Soviet communism because of the way the Russians were transforming their society to provide for their people. The rampant anti-semitism in America at the time was another stimulus; the Soviet constitution made ethnic discrimination a crime against the state. As the star of communism rose, Utopia would be achieved on earth, they believed, and nations would march to this light. To help the star to rise, their mission was industrial espionage, to give third-world Russia the jump state it sorely needed.

The German invasion of Poland, the fall of France, as well as most of the rest of Europe, changed all of this. Not knowing that Germany had all but abandoned the development of a nuclear weapon, the Soviet government now believed it needed the A-Bomb to counter the imagined German threat. All the while, on the quiet, President Roosevelt had been actively encouraging research in the United States. The exodus out of Europe of Jewish intellectuals, especially physicists and mathematicians, greatly boosted our effort. Aware of this, the Soviets who found themselves strapped, needing every cent of their own to halt the German invasion, turned to their network in the United States. The network responded, not to undermine the United States - some of the spies were actually conscientious workers at Los Alamos - but to assist in the defeat of the Nazis and advance the utopian dream. Later at their trials, although realizing the seriousness of the charges against them, none of them really considered themselves traitors; they served a greater ideology which would benefit all Americans.

Winston Churchill's last volume of his World War II memoirs is entitled "Triumph and Tragedy." This title could also apply to America's development of the H-Bomb, for with it came the shift in our military's policy from only defending our shores to pursuing what President Eisenhower called a military-industrial complex to dominate the world. The possessor of the Bomb was due homage, they believed. The Russians always looked upon American materialism as an ideal, and on the Americans as their competitors, but as their paranoia of the Germans dissolved with their victories, that same fear was transferred toward the United States. Pentagon arrogance, unaware of the espionage, had discounted the Russians' intellectual ability to produce the Bomb, was shocked in 1949 by their entry into the nuclear club. The response was a bigger bomb, illegal surveillance of Soviet territory (110 U.S. spy planes were shot down inside Russia, technically an act of war), our airlift to answer their retaliation called the Berlin Blockage, communist witch- hunts and loyalty oaths, and on and on. So began the costly rivalry called the Cold War, which lasted for decades.

The miracle is that it stayed a cold war. In the fall of 1945, most of the scientists raced to leave Los Alamos. It was with deep horror that they viewed the results of their work, and when called upon to return and work on the H-Bomb, most all refused. They preferred to share their work with the entire world so that, since everyone would have the Bomb and be aware of its destructiveness, nobody would use it for fear of retaliation. The Pentagon did not agree. In their view, America was vulnerable; the Russians had long-range bombers. The concept of preemptive attack entered American military planning. Heretofore it had always been said that democracies don't start wars; now we began to plan them. Nuclear bombs were distributed to bases in strategic locations around the world and, at one point, would have been used against China and Russia had President Eisenhower not intervened. A paranoia attended by the power to utterly destroy had gripped America.

This is not an easy book to read. It is long, 590 pages of text which is laboriously detailed, 14 pages of references, but invaluable to a reader who is seriously interested in the goings-on on both sides, in knowing the personalities of the actors, both Russian and American. But "Dark Sun" may leave a reader with a dark feeling of cynicism, that we hear today the same type of rhetoric of machismo and ideology over reason, the same failure of mores to keep pace with science. It's as though we've learned nothing.

Henry Buslepp, an alumnus of the University of Michigan, and his wife, Norma, have been residents of Pagosa Springs for eight years. They moved to Colorado from Detroit, Mich., where he practiced as an independent pharmacist for more than 47 years.

Pagosa Reads features book reviews of all kinds of books from the Ruby M. Sisson Memorial Library, reviewed by local readers just like you. If you would like to review a book and share it in this PREVIEW column, contact Christine Anderson, library director, at 264-2208

Arts Line

Shows and workshop galore as summer arrives

By Wendy Saunders

PREVIEW Columnist

Stop by and visit the Pagosa Springs Arts Council booth at the community center's annual arts and crafts fair Friday and Saturday.

Membership brochures and upcoming art camps and workshops brochures will be available. In addition, several art pieces by members will be offered for sale.

2007 calendar show

The 2007 PSAC Calendar Exhibit and Sale at the Town Park gallery, (315 Hermosa St.) continues through June 5.

All artists and photographers selected for the calendar were local. PSAC received hundreds of entries for the annual calendar. Judges for the calendar images were Carly DeLong, (artist and illustrator with Studio Abuzz in Durango) and Mary Jo Coulehan, executive director of the Pagosa Springs Area Chamber of Commerce.

The 2007 calendar, priced at $9.95, is scheduled for sale beginning July 1 at the gallery and at several businesses in Pagosa.

The cover of the calendar features a painting by Claire Goldrick, titled "Evening Rhapsody" depicting Chimney Rock in a vibrant color scheme. Others whose art appears in the calendar are Betty Slade, Jan Brookshier, Art Franz, Diana Re Baird, Al Olson, Jeff Laydon, David Hunter, Jeanine Malaney, and Emily Tholberg.

PSAC auction

Do you have too much art? PSAC is seeking donated items for its silent and live auctions to be held June 3. Local businesses can keep their name out in the public with their auction donations and gift certificates, and show their support of art in Pagosa Springs. Several artists have already donated items to the auction including Pierre Mion, Wen Saunders, Kayla Douglas, Randall Davis and Soledad Estrada-Leo.

On June 3, doors at the community center will open at 5 p.m. for preview of the artwork and silent auction bidding, with elegant hors d'oeuvres provided by Wildflower Catering, a cash bar and entertainment by harpist Natalie Tyson. Live art auction items include original works by well-known artists. Silent auction items include tickets to local events, gift certificates and items from local businesses, and more art. Tickets can be purchased for $15 at Moonlight Books, Wolftracks, the PSAC Gallery, the Chamber of Commerce and Lantern Dancer. Tickets will also be available at the door the day of the event.

For more information about this event, or to make an item donation to the auction, call the PSAC at 264-5020. The Pagosa Springs Arts Council is a non-profit organization dedicated to ensuring a flourishing and diverse community by enriching lives through the arts.

Plein aire with Slade

Join local artist Betty Slade for a three-day outdoor watercolor workshop, "Summer Fling Plein Aire Watercolor Painting", 9 a.m.-3 p.m. June 15-17.

Betty Slade is an artist in the true sense; she began working in oils in 1965, then pursued watercolors, acrylic and pastels. Beginning with art classes at New Mexico State University, Betty continued with private instruction with some of the finest artists in the Southwest.

During her 40 years in the art arena, Betty has attained success in many areas of the arts. She has written and published several books, note cards and prints. She has 10 years experience in owning and managing art galleries. Her "Women of the Wind" series in originals and prints is well known, is seen on the Princess Cruise Line and hangs in many private collections.

This workshop will focus on painting florals. Attendees will meet at the community center to go to a nearby outdoor location from 9 a.m. to noon, break for lunch and reconvene to continue painting from 1 to 3 p.m. at the community center. Some previous experience is recommended.

This class is designed to be plein aire, so remember the standards: hat, sunscreen, and insect spray. Artists stand and paint or sit using a block or board (chair, easel, TV tray or whatever suits you). Some people have used attaching umbrellas, so bring those if desired. Don't forget a lunch, drinking water and water for painting.

Cost of the workshop is $120 for PSAC members, $145 for nonmembers. Per day students will be considered. Register by calling PSAC at 264-5020. Details and supply list are available at PSAC.

Echterhoff wins award

Congratulations to PSAC member Linda Echterhoff who won an honorable mention award at the 2006 National Juried Gateway show in Farmington for her sculpture "The Pod."

The Gateway to Imaginationexhibit is on display through July 15, at the Farmington Museum and Visitor's Center at Gateway Park, 3041 East Main St. Hours are 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday to Saturday.

Call for entries

The annual PSAC Juried Painting and Drawing Fine Art Exhibit will be held June 29-July 17 at the gallery in Town Park.

All work must be original in concept and created without the assistance of an instructor. An artist may submit up to two entries: watermedia, oil, pastels and drawings (a photography juried show will be held in October). Framing is required on all work submitted, except those works specifically intended to be unframed. Entry size is limited to 40x40, including mat and frame.

All entries must be for sale and PSAC will retain a 30-percent commission on all sales. Entry fees are $20 for PSAC members and $25 general; $30 PSAC members (for two entries) and $35 General (for two entries). Cash and item prizes will be presented with first second and third, and with People's Choice awards. Entries will be accepted June 24-26, noon to 4p.m. at the arts and crafts room lin the Pagosa Springs Community Center. Artists should pick up work not accepted into the show, on June 28 , noon-5:30p.m. at the same location. Accepted work may be picked up after the show, July 18, 11a.m.-5p.m.

The opening reception for the show is 5-7 p.m. Thursday, June 29, at the gallery in Town Park. Entry applications may be obtained at the gallery and online at For more information, contact PSAC at 264-5020.

DAC commission exhibit

The Durango Arts Center announces a call for entries for an upcoming exhibit, "Myths and Prophesies."

Entry forms are available from the Durango Arts Center for the 2006 Four Corners Commission exhibit to be held June 8-July 1. This juried exhibit invites local and regional artists to submit work that exemplifies the diversity of heritage and uniqueness of the Four Corners region.

Juror for this year's exhibit is William Biety, director of the Sandy Carson Gallery in Denver Colorado. Biety was director of The Gallery Camino Real in Boca Raton, Fla. and is a veteran ceramic artist with an extensive education in art history.

An artists' reception will be held 5-7 p.m. Friday, June 9 . This year's theme is reflective of the125 year anniversary of Durango and the Train Station, and the 100-year anniversary of Mesa Verde. Entry forms are available in the lobby of the Durango Arts Center or online at, select online forms.

Watercolor club change

The PSAC Watercolor Club, has changed its meeting day from Wednesday to Thursday. The club now meets at 10 a.m. the third Thursday of each month in the arts and craft space at the community center. The next meeting will be held June 15.

Watercolorists of all levels are provided the opportunity to use the room for the day. Each attending member contributes $5 for use of the space. The goals for the day vary with watercolorists getting together to draw, paint and experience technique demonstrations from professional watercolorists or framers. Participants are encouraged to bring still lives or photos to paint and draw; or a project to complete. Attendees should bring a bag lunch, their supplies and the willingness to have a fun creative day! For more information, contact PSAC at 264-5020.

Figure, portrait workshop

Pierre Mion will teach a watercolor workshop 9 a.m.-4 p.m. July 24-26. Classes will be held in the arts and crafts room at the Pagosa Springs Community Center. An optional fifth day may be added.

Mion offers individual attention, assistance, and a lot of fun in his well-attended workshops.

The subject matter and instruction for this special class is figure and character portraits. PSAC has received many requests for this subject, and here is an opportunity to learn from one of the country's finest artists. Mion will provide photographs of subjects for participants to paint. Participants are also encouraged to bring a special photograph for a portrait watercolor.

The workshop atmosphere is relaxed and open to all levels of students who will learn Mion's step-by-step watercolor techniques. For artists' convenience, watercolor kits are available at an additional cost, or students may supply their own materials from Mion's minimal supply list. Students should bring a bag lunch (drinks available through the community center's vending machines). The price of the three-day workshop is $240.for PSAC members and $265 for nonmembers. An extra $25 will automatically give you a one-year PSAC membership.

Art/Spanish camp

Pagosa Springs Arts Council is proud to sponsor Soledad's Children's Summer Art/Spanish Camp.

Ongoing classes will begin June 5 and last through August. Classes will be held at the community center and are open to children between the ages of 4 and 13. Campersges 4-7 meet from 12:30 - 3:30 p.m. and ages 8 - 13 meet 3:30 - 6:30 p.m. Monday-Thursday. Classes are $150 for two weeks or $275 per month.

Classes are filling up quickly, so call PSAC, 264-5020 to register and for more information. If you prefer to speak directly with Soledad, you can reach her at 731-1314.

Judges needed

PSAC has announced its schedule for the 2006 season, with 10 upcoming shows.

Judges are needed for two juried shows - PSAC Annual Juried Fine Art Show (June 29-July 17) and PSAC Annual Juried Photo Show (Oct. 12-Nov. 1). Judges should be available two days prior to the show openings for judging.

Perspective judges should live outside Archuleta County, submit a resume and three samples of their work. Past judging experience is helpful.

Get to know the artist

If you are a PSAC member and would like to be featured in our upcoming, weekly "Get to know the artist," send your bio, photo and up to six samples of your work for review. Format requirements: (Bio: Microsoft word file. Images: jpeg format, 300 dpi / up to 4x5 inches, or pdf file). For consideration, your information should be presented in CD format and mailed to Wen Saunders, PSAC, P.O. Box 4486, Pagosa Springs, CO 81157.

For more information, call me, 264-4486. Of course, if you are not a PSAC member, perhaps you should be. Visit our Web site,, or call 264-5020 for membership information.

Summer drama camp

This summer, Pagosa Pretenders Family Theatre, a division of PSAC, will offer its first summer drama camp to area students who will be entering grades four through 12 next school year.

Each day, students will attend classes in theater appreciation, improvisation, voice, and monologues/scene study taught by Sean Downing, John Bernard, Darcy Downing, and Felicia Meyer. Each of these instructors brings years of experience and expertise in theatrical production and education to this program.

The camp will run Tuesday through Saturday, May 30 -June 3. Each day, classes begin promptly at 8:30 a.m. and last until noon. On the last day of the camp, students will be able to share what they have learned with parents so, on that Saturday, the time may be extended to accommodate activities.

It is a goal of the Pretenders to provide quality education, creativity and experience in the performing arts to camp students. Flyers/registration forms are available in each public school office and the Sisson Library. Cost for the entire week is $95.

Register early to receive an early registration discount (registration postmarked by May 12) and to secure placement in the camp, as enrollment is limited. If you have additional questions call Susan Garman, 731-2485.

Home and garden tour

Mark your calendars for Sunday, July 9, and plan to attend the PSAC Home and Garden Tour.

This year our tour will concentrate on the U.S. 84 area, featuring homes and ranches between the intersection of U.S. 160 and U.S. 84 and Alpine Lakes. Ticket prices are $10 to PSAC members and $12 to nonmembers. More details will be announced, so stay tuned.

October Mion workshop

Pierre Mion will teach his fall watercolor workshop 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Oct. 9-11.

Classes will be held in the arts and crafts room in the Pagosa Springs Community Center. Students can sign up for an additional session Oct. 12.

Mion offers individual attention, assistance, and a lot of fun in his well attended workshops. The subject matter and instruction for this special class centers on landscapes of Glen Canyon and Lake Powell. Participants will work from photographs, provided by Mion. The workshop atmosphere is relaxed and open to all levels of students. They will learn Mion's step-by-step watercolor techniques. Attendees will explore color guide, various watercolor techniques, and mixing colors. For artist's convenience, watercolor kits are available at an additional cost, or students may supply their own materials from Mion's minimal supply list. Students should bring a bag lunch (drinks available through the community center's vending machines).

The price of the three-day workshop is $240 for PSAC members and $265 for nonmembers, the extra $25 will automatically give you a one-year PSAC membership.) The optional fourth session is available for $60, per person, minimum four students. The main workshop is limited to 10 students. Sign up early, by calling PSAC at 264-5020. For further workshop and supplies information, call Pierre Mion at 731-9781 or visit

Volunteer at gallery

The PSAC Gallery in Town Park is on winter hours: Tuesday and Thursday, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Voice mail and e-mail are checked regularly, so please leave a message if no one is available in the office.

If you are a PSAC member and would like to volunteer hours working at the gallery, call PSAC at 264-5020 for a list of openings. Hours worked at the gallery may be used to attend PSAC workshops throughout the year.

PSAC also has several committee openings for volunteers - Exhibit and Gallery, Art Camps and Workshops, Home and Garden Tour, and Public Relations. If you are a PSAC member and would like to volunteer on one of our committees, helping support art in Pagosa Springs, call 264-5020.

Time to join

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

The privileges of membership include involvement in membership activities, involvement in the community, socializing and participating in the camaraderie of the arts, discounts on PSAC events and workshops, recognition in Artsline and listing in PSAC Artist Guide and PSAC Business Guide. Workshops and exhibits are sponsored by PSAC to benefit the art community. In addition, your membership helps to keep art thriving in Pagosa Springs.

Membership rates are: Youth, $10; Individual-Senior, $20; Regular Individual, $25; Family-Senior, $25; Regular Family, $35; Business, $75; Patron, $250; Benefactor, $500, Director, $1,000; Guarantor, $2,500 and up.

Joye Moon workshop

PSAC will sponsor a watercolor workshop with Joye Moon 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Sept 5-8. Cost for the workshop is $250 for PSAC members and $275 for nonmembers.

Call 264-5020 for advanced registration. For more information, visit, or call PSAC.

 Tom Lockhart workshop

A Plein aire oil painting workshop with Tom Lockhart will be held 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Sept. 11-13. Cost is $300 for PSAC members, $325 general. An additional day maybe scheduled. Call 264-5020 for advanced registration. For more information, visit, or call PSAC.

Workshops in Italy and Mexico

Joye Moon is hosting two travel workshops this year. You can join Joye and her husband, Dave, in travel destinations that include La Romita, Italy,

and San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. The Italy trip, "An Italian Artistic Adventure," Sept. 21- Oct. 3, will take place in the heart of Italy. La Romita is a restored 16th century Capuchin monastery above the ancient Roman city of Terni and just an hour away from Rome. The art school has invited the group to paint and explore the surrounding countryside for two full weeks. Only 18 travelers are allowed, so please register as soon as possible to assure a reservation. Price for the trip is $2,150 (all inclusive, except airfare).

The second trip, "A Mexican Artistic Adventure," Oct, 25 - Nov. 4, takes place in the town of San Miguel de Allende. This Spanish Colonial town is located in the mountains of central Mexico. The town's narrow cobble-stone streets and impressive colonial architecture make it one of the most beautiful in Mexico. San Miguel has an ideal springlike climate and an atmosphere of gracious living, which has attracted and inspired many artists, writers and musicians. Price for the trip is $1,750 before July 15 ($1,900 after that date) and is all inclusive, except airfare. Contact Joye Moon at (920) 235-4429 or for registration and information.

PSAC Calendar

All PSAC classes and workshops are held in the arts and craft space at the community center, unless otherwise noted. All exhibits are shown at the PSAC Gallery in Town Park. For more information contact PSAC at 264-5020, unless otherwise noted.

May 18-June 5 - PSAC 2007 Calendar Exhibit and Sale.

May 30-June 3 - Pagosa Pretenders Children's Drama Camp, 8:30a.m.-noon, Pagosa Springs High School. CallSusan Garman, 731-2485.

June 3 - PSAC Live and Silent Art Auction, Pagosa Springs Community Center, 5 p.m.

June 7 - PSAC "FALLING FORWARD: Web Site Logistics," 9:30a.m.-noon. Contact Wen Saunders, 264-4486.

June 7 - PSAC "FALLING FORWARD: Web Site Updating and Front Page," 1:30-4:30 p.m.

June 8 - Pagosa Springs Watercolor Club Show and Sale. Opening reception, 5-7 p.m.

June 8-27 - Pagosa Springs Watercolor Club Show and Sale.

June 15 - Pagosa Springs Watercolor Club, 10 a.m.

June 15-17 - Summer Fling Plein Aire Watercolor Painting with Betty Slade, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.

June 16 - PSAC "THE SECRET OF YOUR SUCCESS: Marketing Your Biz with Print Media," 9:30 a.m.-noon. Contact Wen Saunders, 264-4486.

June 16 - PSAC "THE SECRET OF YOUR SUCCESS: Different Perspective Marketing Mix," 1:30-4:30 pm.

June 29 - PSAC Annual Juried Fine Art Show and Sale. Opening reception, 5-7 p.m.

June 29-July18 - Annual Juried Fine Art Show and Sale.

July 20 - Ginnie, Denny and the Gang Fine Art Show and Sale. Opening reception, 5-7 p.m.

July 20-Aug. 8 - Ginnie, Denny andthe Gang Fine Art Show and Sale.

July 24-26 - Figure and portrait watercolor workshop with Pierre Mion, 9 a.m.-4 p.m.

Aug. 10 - Pierre Mion and Students Watercolor Exhibit and Sale. Opening reception, 5-7 p.m.

Aug.10-29 - Pierre Mion and Students Watercolor Exhibit Sale.

The Wine Whisperer

Test your Wine Q with our little quiz

By Laura Winzeler

PREVIEW Columnist

A little wine knowledge can be a fun thing.

Impress yourself with how much you know:

1. Who do we have to thank for creating White Zinfandel in the early 1970s?

a) Derek Farrah

b) Karl Isberg

c) Bob Trinchero of Sutter Home.

2. When it comes to syrah and shiraz:

a) They are lyrics in that old Doris Day song: "Kay syrah, shiraz - whatever will be, will be."

b) Syrah is a red grape found in France's Rhone region and shiraz is a pink grape found in Australia.

c) They are the same grape called different names dependent upon growing region.

3. Define the French term "terroir."

a) What you feel when you pull up to pump your gas.

b) Suddenly realizing that you're fresh out of wine and it's Sunday.

c) The combination of soil, topography and weather conditions of a wine growing region.

4. If you were a Pinotage, where would you be hanging?

a) Excuuuuuuuuuuuuuse me?

b) Between pink and mauve on the Martha Stewart color wheel.

c) In a South African vineyard.

5. When dining out, smelling the cork from your bottle of wine tells you:

a) If the wine is defective.

b) The relative age of the wine.

c) Nothing, but it tells everyone else that you're a pretentious boob.

6. A punt is:

a) What a football team does after blowing the first three downs.

b) What you do when you have forgotten something important like a friend's name, lover's birthday. Also called "CYA".

c) The indentation on the bottom of still and sparkling wine bottles.

7. Malolactic fermentation is:

a) What happens to all the old milk you never toss from your refrigerator.

b) That cop involved in the O.J. Simpson trial.

c) A secondary fermentation process in white wine making wherein the tart, crisp, malic (apple) acid in the grapes is softened and made to taste more like butter or milk (lactic).

8. "Sur lie" means:

a) The attitude some people display when they dine out and can't find one good wine by the glass on the menu.

b) The attitude other people display when they can't find one reasonably priced bottle of wine on the menu.

c) Aging the wine after fermentation on the dead yeast cells, grape skins and pulp, imparting a rich and toasty character.

Answer Key: The correct answer is always "c".

If you scored eight out of eight, you are a Wine Whisperer. If you scored less than eight correctly, you have a great sense of humor and wonderful taste in newspapers.

I tend to whine a lot about the year-to-year variation in some of my favorite bottles of wine. I know that the word "vintage" refers to the yield of wine (or grapes) from a vineyard (or district) in one specific growing season (or year). I realize that growers and winemakers have many fickle, nature and weather-related conditions thwarting their ability to replicate a consistent taste. But who wants excuses when you've purchased a wine that you usually love and find your nose and mouth making involuntary rodent face gestures? I know am not the only one who makes the rodent face when confronted with a loser wine.

In an effort to elicit a human smile from your face instead of a twitching rat nose, here are two reasonably priced selections that consistently gratify, year to year. I have been enjoying both for decades and have never once opened a bottle, regardless of vintage, that was not fully pleasing.

Sterling 2005 Vintner's Collection Sauvignon Blanc, Central Coast ($11) - I loved this wine when I worked in Napa in 1990 and I love it today. Ten years ago this summer I sat in the Greenhouse Restaurant for the first time and found that it was one of the few white wines by the glass on the menu bearing a name that I recognized. I loved the 1995 that night and made a mental note to self to eat at the Greenhouse a lot. Sterling crafts a moderately priced sauvignon blanc that is extremely refreshing, crisp, clean and very food-friendly. The acidity is always pitch-perfect for me with a lengthy and satisfying finish. The vibrant citrus flavors lean closer to the lemon-lime/orange blossom side of the scale than the too-pungent grapefruit side. Bless them for their 100-percent stainless steel fermentation choice - two flavors I abhor in a sauvignon blanc are vanilla-soaked oak and enough grass to feed a herd of elk.

Laurel Glen 2003 REDS ($10) - This is one of my top five favorite California red blends. I'm not usually a big fan of the zinfandel grape as it can be so intense and overpowering that I almost feel allergic, but here, when blended with carignane and petite sirah, it so works! My tasting notes from the 2000 are nearly identical to those for the 2003: Dark black cherry, plum, anise spice, cedar, tobacco, chocolate. Mocha coffee and meaty leather, but in a good way. The wine reveals itself layer-by-layer with each sip as the palate warms up. This is one opulent and complex red wine for the price.

In the Broadening My Wine Horizons file, I was in New Mexico last month and stopped in a wine store. I asked the owner to recommend his favorite value red from any region. He asked what I look for in a red. (Good question indicating a professional merchant who will calibrate his suggestion to my palate, not his.) I told him fruit-forward, intense cherry/berry flavors, medium-bodied, smooth tannins. He led me to Altos Las Hormigas 2005 Colonia Las Liebres Bonarda. I learned that Bonarda is a grape with origins in Italy and the most widely planted red grape in Argentina, homeland of this bottle. The wine was spicy and rich with coffee/toffee and anise/licorice flavors. I got my dark black cherry fruit fix and found the medium body and firm tannins I sought. A few weeks later it showed up in the May 15 Wine Spectator as a Best Buy, albeit with a suggested retail ($8) lower than I paid ($9.50). Overall, a very pleasant discovery that left me proud of my courageous step out of my New World Wine Box.

Food for Thought

Tell Loooooocinnda I'm eating alone

By Karl Isberg

Staff Writer

Table for one, please.

Eating alone in a restaurant.

Not the easiest thing to pull off.

Eating alone in a restaurant, in a city that offers very few, if any, attractive dining opportunities.

More difficult yet.

Such is my lot: I'm alone, in Pueblo, Colorado, (pee-ebb-low to oldtime Coloradans of the Anglo persuasion).

I've just spent nine hours confined in a large, crumbling concrete football stadium, most of the time on my feet on a field, on a very hot artificial surface. My breakfast consists of a slimy bagel at a cheap motel, a paltry facsimile of noble, simple fare slathered with fake cream cheese and 90-percent high-fructose corn syrup imitation fruit jelly and chased with seven cups (styrofoam cups) of weak and bitter coffee. I've been slugging down water all day long, occasionally splashing my scorched forehead with some of the precious fluid. The bagel is long past the processed stage and is on its way to daylight; I haven't eaten since 7 a.m. and I am hungry, hot, grouchy and increasingly cynical about my prospects for a decent meal in a burg not known as the culinary capital of the Eastern Slope.

In fact, as far as I can tell - a few Italian restaurants aside (and I am not in the mood for mid-grade Italian after a day in the hot sun) - the town has but one establishment for even a semi-serious diner. I call for a reservation. It is almost 8 p.m. on a Friday night. I tell the person on the other end of the line that I want a reservation for one person. I hear the bozo snicker. There is laughter in the background.

So, it's off on the hunt.

I find plenty of fast food joints.

There's also an abundance of "houses" - pancake houses, waffle houses, houses of (fill in the blank).

I am getting desperate. I pass a couple places with the word "country" in their names. Ordinarily, I have a rule: Never eat at a restaurant with the word "country" in its name. Out of desperation, I break my rule.


I enter the "country" establishment located on the highway access road. There are approximately 200 tables in the place, four of them occupied. The hostess has trouble deciding where to seat me. I should break and run, but I don't.


There is a squadron of wait people scurrying about, hurling chairs around, policing the tile floor with obnoxious, loud hand sweepers, dropping plates and whatnot, but it takes about fifteen minutes for one to approach my table. I see her lips move but the Best of Hank Williams is playing at such high volume, I don't hear a word she says.

Fortunately, I have had fifteen minutes or so to scan the menu. The restaurant offers a large number of "tummy tantalizin'" entrees, each billed as a "heapin' portion."

A sure sign of trouble.

A significant number of the menu items are described as "mouth waterin'" and all offer a choice of three sides from "Grandma's kitchen."

Mmmmm, who can resist the urge to tie into a bowl full of day-old, lukewarm fried okra cooked by a half-senile old woman who can't see, hear or smell?

Me, for one.

So, I opt for a salad. A grilled chicken salad.

The concoction comes piled on a large oval platter. Greens (or browns, to be accurate) are stacked in the center of the platter. A handful of shredded, processed American cheese has been artlessly scattered atop the greens. Crowning that are the charred remnants of a chicken breast, along with rings of raw, red onion and some granite hard croutons. Around the edge of the rubble are set several wedges of greenish-red vegetable matter (I deduce these are the wedges of "vine-ripened tomatoes" highlighted on the menu) a halved hard-boiled egg and a thick triangle of the above noted American cheese.

Ahhh. What a treat.

Thank you, Grandma.

I stagger back to my motel and experience severe gastric distress.

Which, as it turns out, is ultimately preferable to spending a night in a cheap motel filled to the rafters with high school kids. There are four high school track teams booked into the Sleepawhile Motor Inn, and life is not easy.

The bellowing begins just after I enter my room. Teenage boys bellow, you know, like young elk bugling in a vain attempt to attract a member of the opposite sex. They sit in hallways and bellow. They bang on doors and bellow.

With my luck, things get better yet. Gas isn't enough; bellowing boys aren't enough.

I hear something hit the window of my room, a clicking against the glass. I am on the third floor.

Next, I hear something thud against the siding next to the window.

Next, I hear the ping of an object off the window of the next room.

Then, the plaintive cry. The bugle.

"Looooooooocinnnnnnda. Loooooooooocinnnnnnda."

I part the curtains and look down.

A track team from Del Norte is staying at the motel and I am witness to the Cyrano de Bergerac of the San Luis Valley. Below, standing on the sidewalk, tossing pebbles at Looooooooocinnnnnnda's window is a close-cropped lad wearing a wife-beater T-shirt and a pair of baggy shorts that have descended quite a distance down his hips.

And, in the dark next to the building, whispering instructions to the would-be Lothario, is his Cyrano.

Loooooooooocinnda opens the window to her room and the conversation that ensues is primal.

"Go away. I don't wanna never see you no more."

"Looooooooocinnnda, dude, come on. You know I really likes you."

"Yeah, you really likes me all right. That's why you never tol me bout your girlfren. That there girl in the car with you last night."

"Hey, she wasn't no girlfren. She was my cousin."

(Apparently Cyrano is falling asleep at the switch.)

"Oh yeah, then why's she right here with me now?"

A second prima donna chimes in from Loooooooocinnda's room.

"So, you tellin her I'm you cousin. Don you never call me no more, boy. I hate you."

Cut to Looooocinnda. "Yeah, an I hate you too. You stupid."

The thing is going downhill fast. I watch as Cyrano escapes unnoticed, pants dragging, into the dark of night, leaving Lothario alone, exposed, abandoned.

After the exchange of some x-rated pleasantries, the heartrending sage of torrid teen romance ends as girls scream, boy bellows and doors slam.

This, of course, sets off a half-hour series of door slams up and down the hallway. There are doors slamming on the second floor as well.

Were I an experimental composer, I would reflect on my experience and compose a piece titled "Motel Door Suite." It would consist of motel and hotel doors, slamming shut singly and in unison, in many tones, in varied rhythmic patterns, building in a crescendo that climaxes with a tortured scream.

Why is it humankind has been able to invent the cyclotron and fake bagels, but no one - not even some math-whiz Chinese lad with horn-rim glasses - has been able to figure out how to make a quiet hotel room door?

I have no mechanical ability, so the door problem is beyond me. But as I lie on my lumpy bed at the Sleepawhile Motor Inn, I realize I can improve on the grilled chicken salad I ate and that I continue to enjoy, in essence, throughout the night.

Mine starts with a substantial skinless, boneless chicken breast and a marinade.

The marinade can be something simple: extra virgin olive oil, lemon, garlic, herbs. The marinade can get more elaborate or ethnic-specific, if need be. Red chile powder, chipotles and adobo, various herbs. How about Thai red curry in a marinade? A teriyaki marinade? Better yet, how about some hoisin sauce, dry sherry, shoyu, a bit of rice wine vinegar and a major amount of garlic? Or a citrus marinade, combining the juices of orange, lemon and lime with garlic and herbs, the citrusy liquid jazzed up with clove, cumin, oregano.

Whatever the choice (I'm opting for olive oil, chipotle, adobo, garlic and lemon juice) the marinade goes into a large plastic locking bag with the chicken and the sealed bag is put into the fridge overnight. Try to turn it once or twice before you go to bed and once or twice before you take the chicken out to let it get to room temp before cooking.

For the foundation - mixed greens, torn into manageable pieces. Nothing is worse than a huge hunk of raddichio hanging out of your mouth, so tear away.

Dress the greens?

Eh, you decide. If you must, use a dressing harmonious with your marinade.

The tomatoes are a grand idea, if a decent one is available. So are some green beans, steamed until just tender. Slices of hard-boiled egg? Nice touch. Anything will do, within reason; let your imagination run riot when it comes to additions to the mix.

Red onion rings? By all means, but not raw. Saute or grill thin rings of red onion until they begin to caramelize.

Take the chicken out and let most of the marinade fall from the meat. Set up the grill with two heat zones - one hot, one medium. Sear off the chicken on the hot side of the grill then move it over and allow it to finish over the medium heat.

Slice the chicken breast on the diagonal, season it and place atop the greens. Put the onions on top of the meat.

This is the point at which I choose to dress the mix - on the mount. With a classic, homemade bleu cheese dressing, all garlicky good and creamy and loaded with major league hunks o' cheese. Real cheese.


Forget it. Buy a loaf of crusty artisanal bread and have plenty of fresh butter on hand. It's a darned sight easier to mop up stray dressing and juices with a hunk o' bread.

This salad can be mighty good. Even if you eat alone.

Maybe even good enough to change Loooooocinnnnda's mind.

Extension Viewpoints

Lawn care tips for the summer season

By Bill Nobles

PREVIEW Columnist

May 27 - 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Pagosa Fiber Festival.

May 28 - 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Pagosa Fiber Festival.

May 29 - Office closed, Memorial Day.

May 31 - 4 p.m. Sportsfishing Project meeting.

June 1 - 7 p.m. Shady Pine Club meeting.

June 1 - 12:30-1:30 p.m. Entomology Project meeting

Lawn care tips

Many factors influence lawn water requirements, and no two lawns are exactly alike. A healthy, high-quality bluegrass or ryegrass lawn may need up to 2.25 inches of water per week under hot summer conditions. Turf-type tall fescue may perform well with less water than a bluegrass lawn, if it can grow a deep root system. Shady lawns and areas protected from the wind require less water over the growing season than more exposed turf. However, the roots of mature trees and shrubs also need water. You may have to water more in mature landscapes where the roots of many plants compete for water. Healthy turf, encouraged by proper mowing, fertilizing and cultivation, uses water more efficiently.

Each time you water the lawn, apply enough water to moisten as much of the root zone as possible. Use a soil probe or shovel to determine what the average rooting depth is in your lawn. If the roots grow down 6 inches deep, water so the soil is moistened to that depth. With most soils, do not apply all the water in a short period of time. If applied too quickly, water often runs off of thatchy turf, from sloped areas, or from turf growing on heavy clay or compacted soils. Core cultivation (aeration) can resolve some infiltration problems by reducing thatch and compaction. Wetting agents may enhance water movement into the soil, but they should not be considered a cure-all, especially when compaction or thatch are problems.

The most efficient time of day to water is late evening and early morning. It generally is less windy, cooler and more humid at this time, resulting in less evaporation and more efficient use of water. During extended dry periods from late fall to spring, it may be necessary to water every four to six weeks if the ground is thawed and will accept water. Pay particular attention to exposed slopes, sites with shallow soil, and south- or west-facing exposures. Water pressure is generally better and this results in optimal distribution patterns. Contrary to popular belief, watering at night does not encourage disease development.

The two most important facets of mowing are mowing height and frequency. The minimum height for any lawn is 2 inches. The preferred mowing height for all Colorado species is 2.5 to 3 inches. Mowing to less than 2 inches can result in decreased drought and heat tolerance and higher incidence of insects, diseases and weeds. Mow the lawn at the same height all year. There is no reason to mow the turf shorter in late fall. Mow the turf often enough so no more than 1/3 of the grass height is removed at any single mowing. If your mowing height is 2 inches, mow the grass when it is 3 inches tall. If weather or another factor prevents mowing at the proper time, raise the height of the mower temporarily to avoid cutting too much at one time. Cut the grass again a few days later at the normal mowing height.

Let grass clippings fall back onto the lawn, unless they are used for composting or mulching elsewhere in the landscape. Grass clippings decompose quickly and provide a source of recycled nutrients and organic matter for the lawn. Mulching mowers can do this easily. Side-discharge rotary mowers also distribute clippings effectively if the lawn is mowed at the proper frequency. Grass clippings do not contribute to thatch accumulation. If herbicides are applied to the lawn, do not use clippings in the vegetable or flower Gardens, keep them on the lawn. During the season, regularly check mowing equipment for sharpness and adjustment. Sharpen rotary mower blades every fourth mowing, especially when mowing fescue or ryegrass lawns. A dull mower blade will shred and fray leaf blades instead of cutting them cleanly. The result is a brown, unattractive lawn.

Nitrogen is the most important nutrient for promoting good turf color and growth. Do not over stimulate the turf with excess N, especially during the spring and summer. Over fertilization can contribute to thatch buildup and increased mowing requirements. Avoid under fertilization of bluegrass and ryegrass. These species can become unhealthy if not fertilized properly. Turf that does not respond to nitrogen fertilizer may be lacking in other nutrients, such as phosphorus or iron. Get the soil tested to determine which nutrient(s) are deficient. Balanced or complete fertilizers contain various amounts of phosphorus, potassium, iron and sulfur. They are a good safeguard against a potential nutrient deficiency. If you leave clippings on the lawn, these nutrients are recycled from the clippings. If you remove clippings, this type of fertilizer is appropriate.

For more information on lawn care call the Archuleta County Extension Office at 264-5931.

Record book judges

Archuleta County 4-H program is still in need of Livestock Record Book judges.

We are asking anyone familiar with 4-H and livestock to volunteer as a record book judge at this year's fair. The judging consists of interviewing the 4-H member, then judging their record book. The interview process takes place at the Archuleta County Fair 9 a.m.- 1 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 6.

Each judge is assigned a species: beef, swine, sheep, goat, horse, turkey or rabbit. We will provide breakfast and lunch for all the judges. Prior to the fair, we have a judges' orientation luncheon meeting with lunch provided by the 4-H program.

We try to limit the number of members for each judge to around 10. If you think this is something you are interested in, call Pamela at the Extension Office, 264-5931.

Field bindweed mites

Field bindweed is one of the most widespread and difficult to manage weeds growing throughout the U.S. The plant thrives in the arid western states and will grow on many sites where other plants cannot exist.

One way to help control bindweed growth is introduction of bindweed mites to the infested area. The bindweed mite is a microscopic eriophyid mite imported from southern Europe. It does not damage other plant species, and it requires bindweed to survive. The Archuleta County Extension Office will be receiving 200 releases of bindweed mites at $20 per release for use in managing field bindweed. Each release will treat 25 acres and is 75-percent effective in controlling field bindweed after two years. Mites will be delivered the end of June.

If you are interested in purchasing the bindweed mites, contact the office at 264-5931.

Check out our Web page at for calendar events and information.

Pagosa Lakes News

Adjust your habits to summer's swell of visitors

By Ming Steen

SUN Columnist

Our high school seniors have graduated, school-age children are home, swim lessons will soon begin at the recreation center, and the tourists are here to enjoy our high country living for a while.

There is a very noticeable change in the air. More folks, more cars, longer lines at the grocery store, rising mercury in the thermometer, and more users at the recreation center.

Effective Tuesday, May 30, the pool programming schedule at the recreation center will be different. Please make a note of the changes.

Monday through Friday: 6-7:30 a.m. - lap swim, master swim, water aerobics (6:30-7:30); 7:30-9:30 a.m. - swim team; 9:30-noon - lap swim, swim lessons, water aerobics (9:30-10:30); noon-8:45 p.m. - open swim, lap swim. On Saturday and Sunday, the pool is available for lap swimming and open swimming 9 a.m.-8:45 p.m.

Times that are available for open swim are generally noisier and more crowded. Lap swimmers swimming these hours will have to tolerate the occasional stray beach ball or child in the swim lane. If you lack tolerance for noise and children, please try to come in before 7:30 a.m. during the week. Otherwise, with the lovely weather outside, a relaxing walk, bike or run in the woods will enable you to get in some cardiovascular exercise without jostling with the indoor crowd.

Swim lessons will begin Monday, June 5, and parents of registered swimmers are asked to drop off their swimmers on the pool deck with the instructors and return when classes are over. Parents are welcome to be on the pool deck the last day of class to see their swimmers' accomplishments.

If everyone replaced half of the short-distance auto trips with a bike or their feet, the country would save more than 20 billion gallons of gas a year, and hundreds of billions of pounds of carbon dioxide emissions. This change would also mean healthier and trimmer people.

Europe is making progress, encouraging more bicycling. In Copenhagen, bicyclists are surveyed every year on whether they feel safe, and steep goals for improvement are set based on the survey. France appointed a bike minister to encourage biking and many countries - the United Kingdom, Denmark, Germany - are building connected bike paths across their land.

In Copenhagen, 36 percent of work trips are done on bike and, in Germany, the number is 12 percent - compared with our national average of 1 percent.

For example, connecting the Pagosa Lakes area to town via a network of trails would definitely encourage more people to bike. The shoulders of U.S. 160, between Pagosa Lakes and town, although fairly wide, are still not without risks.

I look forward to the day that a parent could safely suggest to her middle-school age child to ride a bike to and from town.

Biking is just plain fun. Besides, the bike could help toward saving our aging and polluted planet. With the end of cheap oil, the bike could also save our pocketbooks.

 Business News

Chamber News

Antique car enthusiasts — start your engines!

By Mary Jo Coulehan

SUN Columnist

Just when the cyclists head out of town, the antique cars roll in.

On Sunday, July 2, an antique car race, The Great Race, will pit stop here in Pagosa Springs. We are working to have Lewis Street, from 4th Street to U.S. 160 blocked off so the cars can be displayed for several hours.

The Great Race is celebrating its 24th year and has become the country's premiere long distance, antique car race. The race typically travels cross country covering over 4,000 miles. This year is no exception: the race begins June 24 in Philadelphia, and ends July 8 in San Rafael, Calif. As part of their trip, drivers will experience Pagosa and our very own Wolf Creek Pass - celebrating its 90th anniversary.

Here is where the community comes in. These cars are just awesome: all cars or trucks must be made before 1959. There will be more than 100 teams competing for prize monies. This is a wonderful family event and we are lucky it will be rolling through town on the Fourth of July weekend - just one more event for you and the folks in town for your family reunion to attend.

If you are interested in sponsoring a team, call the Chamber at 264-2360.

If you have an antique car and would like to display it on the race route into Pagosa, call the Chamber. But, let's talk about sponsorships first.

The Great Race teams will arrive in Pagosa in three sets of about 30 cars each. Therefore, we only have 30 sponsorship slots open. Sponsorships are only $125. Each car slot on Lewis Street will have a sign with a sponsor's name or logo on the sign. You are able to man the space with family or business staff.

For businesses, this is a great opportunity to get your name and staff members into pictures with your race team. Use these pictures for future publicity for your organization. You can also wear your business clothing, give out a business gift to the racers for them to remember you by and remind them where they were.

The really great opportunity is that you get to host three teams.

The Chamber will provide snacks and beverages to the teams at a central concession area, so you do not have to provide any food unless you want to do something over and above what we will be doing.

You will need to direct your team to the nearest restrooms, then have snack items at your station or direct them to the central concession area.

What a great opportunity for antique car enthusiasts to talk to the racers on a more in-depth level than if you were just a bystander. This race takes a tremendous amount of work to complete, but the teams love the race and enjoy the people they meet along their route.

Now, information for anyone who would like to display a car. We would like to welcome the racers to Pagosa as they approach or enter town. I know there are some dandy cars out there that could be displayed. If anyone is interested in participating, please call me. The number of participants we enroll will determine where we will place the cars. I'm hoping we'll be able to have some cars at the Historical Museum since it is Wolf Creek's anniversary. The San Juan Historical Society was instrumental in allowing us to use a photo of some of the first cars coming over Wolf Creek Pass in 1916 for our ad in the Great Race guide book. Many thanks to them.

This is a busy weekend for our community, and this unique race will add to the charm. By all accounts, this race is just awesome. I can't wait to see these collector cars.

Don't wait too long to call in for a sponsorship slot; I anticipate them to go very quickly.

Happening soon

Don't forget that you only have a few days left to get your business inserts into the Chamber of Commerce newsletter, which comes out the beginning of June.

This is a very important newsletter as it will contain information about all upcoming events like the bike tours, the car race and Fourth of July activities. With so many events going on in June and July, we will also put out a "clip and save" calendar to help you in planning, personally and professionally.

The newsletter has upped its publication numbers to keep the community better informed, as well as to give businesses the opportunity to advertise on a timelier basis. To participate in the newsletter, you need to provide the Chamber with 700 flyers. The cost is $50. The flyers need to be flat, not folded ,and they can be two sided. For more information, call Kimberley at 264-2360.

It is also the deadline for getting your orders in for the annual Chamber hanging baskets. These beautiful 12-inch baskets will be delivered Friday, June 2, by a Chamber staff or board member. Now that's service!

Your baskets will also come with some fertilizer to thank our members for "growing with the Chamber." Baskets are $25 each and they are planted with room to grow over the summer and with plants that are heat tolerant. Call the Chamber to reserve your flowers.

The annual Pagosa Fiber Fest and Navajo rug auction take place this weekend. The festival will be held at the fairgrounds on U.S. 84 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Come out and see all the fiber producing animals: sheep, goats, alpacas, llamas. Visit the fleece vendors, learn from demonstrations and talks, watch shearing, enjoy food and drink and buggy rides for the children and much more.

The highlight of the festival is fast becoming the Navajo rug auction to be held at 6 p.m. Sunday, May 28. Over 200 rugs from Navajo weavers will be offered at the sale. This is a great opportunity to adorn your home with a hand-woven rug. This festival is great entertainment for the whole family. Admission is $1 and children under 12 are free. For more information, contact Pauline Benetti at 264-5232.

Starting Friday, the community center will host its arts and crafts show. The show will run from 3 to 6 p.m. Friday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. Booth space is still available. Call Mercy at the center at 264-4152. Start holiday shopping now; OK, maybe just some shopping for upcoming birthdays.

You outdoor and river enthusiasts, don't forget the Friends of the Upper San Juan River will have their river celebration Sunday, June 4. The day will start out with a river cleanup; there will be outdoor and river recreation activities and the day will end with a barbecue and some music. Thank you to all the volunteers who look to protect one of our greatest assets in this community - the San Juan River that runs right through town.

Art or auction devotees have the Pagosa Springs Arts Council Auction to attend Saturday, June 3. The live and silent auctions will be held at the community center starting at 6 p.m. Scrumptious hors d'oeuvres will be served by Wildflower Catering, harpist Natalie Tyson will perform and, of course, there are all those wonderful art pieces in different styles and mediums. Tickets are $15 and may be obtained at the PSAC gallery, the Chamber of Commerce, Moonlight Books, WolfTracks and Lantern Dancer. Don't miss this opportunity to see some wonderful art, meet some of the artists, and gather once again with friends.


Before we welcome our new and renewing members, I would like to invite everyone to a grand reopening of a business Saturday. We congratulate Eric Matzdorf and Pedal and Powder on a new location and the expansion of inventory. Here are the ribbon cutting details: Pedal and Powder is still located in the Silverado Shopping Center near Boss Hogs, in the front portion of the center, now on the corner next to Upscale Resale. Come on in Saturday for some great specials, food and the official ribbon cutting right around the noon hour.

Our first new member to mention is Jennifer Burck and Wind Wranglers Balloon Company. Wind Wranglers offers "free flight" hot air balloon rides. You can entertain visiting business personnel or give your own business staff members a balloon ride or set up a trip or two for those visiting family and friends this summer. Don't forget the intimate flight - what a date that would be! Wind Wranglers Balloon Company would like to make your trip for two to four people enjoyable. For more information, please call 731-0175. Welcome to the Chamber.

You've seen him at speaking forums, you've seen him act, now you should see him work on helping your business, new or expanding. j.r. porter & associates, with John Porter, is available to assess your organization and your personnel to create strategies for sustainable success. He performs economic studies, consulting, speaking and training and all facets are crafted with common sense and sensitivity to personnel. I've seen some of John's statistical studies and they are quite complete. Give him a call at 731-3671 to set up an appointment on how he can help your business. We thank Ann Graves for recruiting John, although John has been a friend of the Chamber for years.

Next we welcome Galen Erin and Galen Erin Project Management. This business is terrific, especially for you second-home owners. Galen, a master builder in the trades for more than 30 years, can provide you with project management from dirt to done. It is difficult to manage your project when you are not here all the time, and there are so many little details to oversee. Galen can be your eyes and ears to make sure projects are built right, built beautifully, and built on time. She is available to contractors, developers, out of town owners, and anybody who needs a project managed. Give her a call at 759-6942 to schedule an appointment. Let someone else sweat the details of building your home and ensure that the project comes out right. Thank you Galen for joining the Chamber.

Just over the Continental Divide in South Fork, we welcome Century 21 Valley Realty. Terry Smith says South Fork is experiencing a growth spurt as well. Valley Realty is the largest full-service real estate company in the San Luis Valley. They service the South Fork and Creede areas offering anything from cabins, luxury homes, and mountain and river properties. Valley Realty also works with property rentals on a weekly or monthly basis. Once again, if we in Pagosa do not have what a customer is in the market for, pass this customer on to a Chamber member in another county who is involved enough to join our Chamber. Thank you Terry and Valley Realty for your involvement. We hope to see you at a SunDowner soon. Call (719) 873-5559 for more information about properties listed over the pass.

Now for our valuable renewals. We welcome back Ensignal, Jere and Lois Hill with United Mini Storage, Canyon R.E.O., Rocky Mountain Outfitters in Bayfield, and Paul Nobles, associate with Romar Realty.

The staff and board of the Chamber of Commerce wishes everyone a fun and safe Memorial Day weekend. This holiday typically kicks off the summer season, and it will be a busy one for our community. We hope residents will become involved in all the events that touch our lives this summer. Whether you have family, friends or just yourselves here this summer, come out and enjoy all the unique festivities planned. Of course, we can always use a volunteer or two or 10 for a few hours at any of the happenings. Just call us at the Chamber and we'll find a spot for you. It's a great way to experience the events "up close and personal."

Plant those flowers, mow that grass, break out the grills, and enjoy our piece of paradise!

Biz Beat

Chez Pagosa Restaurant at Pagosa Lodge is pleased to welcome Chef Dean and Pastry Chef Deci Barns, and daughters Dennah and Dasha to Pagosa Springs. Dean and Deci, owners of Something Special Baker and Tea Room in Farmington, bring with them 25 years of family restaurant experience. This team's winning philosophy is, "Anyone can have an average meal anywhere, but when you go out you need something special."

Recognition received by this outstanding team include Reader's Choice in the Daily Times, Four Corners Business Journal, and mention in the Travel Section of the Los Angeles Times. Dean Barns received the 2004 Ronald Reagan Republican Gold Medal for outstanding leadership in business.

Dean and Deci have myriad recipes, beginning each day with fresh breads, croissants and pastries, and introducing a variety of cuisine representing all nationalities and dietary needs. Chef Dean's experience includes three years as a chef on board an ocean trawler bound for Siberia, and Deci, who is from Brazil, adds South American flavors to the fare at Chez Pagosa.


Cards of Thanks


The family of Ron Stepke, who died May 5, wishes to give heartfelt thanks to the staff of Hospice of Mercy of Pagosa Springs. With the help of Kim, Debbie, Julianna, Nicole and Chaplain Don, Ron was able to spend his last days at home with family in comfort and peace. Thank you all so much for your support and care.

The family is asking that, in lieu of flowers, please make donations to Hospice of Mercy, 35 Mary Fisher Circle, Pagosa Springs.

Phyl Collier


In October of last year, I became a victim of a fraud scheme as I attempted to purchase a used four-wheel-drive Jeep from a car dealer in Arizona. After six frustrating months of trying to recover my money, I sought the help of Pagosa officials in late March.

With the efforts of the following people, my money was recovered two weeks later on April 8. I would like to publicly thank the following people who were so dedicated in helping me recover my down payment: Ben Johnson, general manager of Hi Mesa Auto; Pete Gonzalez, district attorney investigator; and the Archuleta County Sheriff's Department, including George Daniels and Deputy Wayne Reese. I am proud to be a new resident of Pagosa Springs and to know that we have such fine officials willing and able to help its citizens.

Connie Davidson


We would love to give a special thank you to Father Carlos Alvarez and Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church for the beautiful service they provided, also to the wonderful people at the Baptist Church for allowing us to use the church facilities.

Thank you also to the Guadalupanas for the great food they provided for everyone. Thank you to Kevin La Quey of La Quey Funeral Home and Dennis Martinez for the beautiful flower arrangement. We also want to give all our love and thanks to our friends and family that showed us such open arms of hospitality. The love and support that we received from everyone was very kind and heartfelt. Knowing how much everyone cared and loved "Goomie" as much as we do, helped us get through the hardship of her passing. Thank you all so much for showing us that we can always feel at home in Pagosa Springs.

With all our love,

Goomie's daughters and their families


On behalf of PIE (Partners in Education) and all elementary school fourth-grade parents and teachers, I would like to express our overwhelming gratitude to the following people for creating our fourth-grade graduation slide show: Curtis Maberry, Anna Hershey, Elise McDonald and Katie Vowles. What a wonderful ending to a wonderful year. Thank you.

Carrie Toth


The White family would like to thank Pagosa Springs Golf Club, Alan Schutz and Nicole for all their help. Special thanks to Jeff Laydon, all of the volunteers and family and friends for all their help. Thanks to all the sponsors and merchants for the great gift certificates for prizes. With all the sponsors, we were able to give four scholarships this year. Thank you all so much for helping us make a child's dream come true and believing in them. It was great to see everybody and be back in Pagosa Springs.

See you soon,

Burly, Cindy and Chris White

Post prom


With so many sponsors and donors this year for the Post Prom Party, we forgot to thank Pedal and Powder for the donation of a bike, Wolf Creek Ski Area for ski passes and all the donors who helped with the garage sale that helped fund the party. Thank you.

Post Prom Committee 2006


Franklin, Reynolds-Day, Ihly

Krystle Franklin, Pam Reynolds-Day and JoLyne Ihly of Pagosa Springs graduated May 6 from San Juan College School of Cosmetology. Franklin earned a three-semester cosmetology license; Reynolds-Day earned a one-semester manicurist/pedicurist license; Ihly completed the two-semester manicurist/esthetician program.


Amy Moore, daughter of Walter and Kim Moore, graduated from Colorado State University May 12, 2006, with a bachelor of science degree in construction management. Amy has accepted a job with Kiewit Construction Company in San Francisco. She starts her new job June 5, and will be living in the Bay Area. Amy is a 2002 graduate of Pagosa Springs High School.


Air Force Airman 1st Class Thomas L. Henderson has graduated from basic military training at Lackland Air Force Base, San Antonio, Texas.

During the six weeks of training, the airman studied the Air Force mission, organization, and military customs and courtesies; performed drill and ceremony marches, and received physical training, rifle marksmanship, field training exercises, and special training in human relations.

In addition, airmen who complete basic training earn credits toward an associate degree through the Community College of the Air Force.

He is the son of Larry Henderson of Pagosa Springs.

San Juan Technical College

Three Pagosans graduated with honors May 13 from San Juan Technical College, receiving certificates in practical nursing. From left are Andrea Constant, Ernest Garcia and Christina Hall. The three plan to continue classes in the fall in pursuit of RN certification.


Performance Associates is pleased to announce that Caitlin Forrest is the 2006 recipient of its Self-Reliance Scholarship.

The $5,000 scholarship is intended to recognize a student who has demonstrated self-reliance, a strong work ethic, and commitment to his/her family and personal goals during the student's tenure in high school or home schooling career.

Caitlin's personal values demonstrate qualities of self-reliance on which this award is based. Caitlin has been leader on the Pirates girls' volleyball and basketball teams, a member of the National Honor Society, student council, and has participated in the Intermountain League art competitions.


The Water Division 7 Chapter of the Colorado Water Officials Association has announced that Craig Schutz has been selected as the 2006 recipient of the Daries "Chuck" Lile Scholarship.

Craig, the son of Dick and Sherry Schutz, has lived close to the land and water on the family ranch near Chromo. In the fall, he will attend the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs with an interest in water resources. Craig is the second Pagosa Springs High School senior to receive this award.

The Daries "Chuck" Lile Scholarship has been awarded annually since 2001 and is offered to southwest Colorado high school seniors planning to attend a Colorado college or university with interest in water resources, environmental sciences, civil engineering, or agricultural studies.


A concrete vision

Following recent actions, town and county officials and depart-ments have muscle to flex when dealing with development, growth and their impacts. Tuesday, the county commissioners passed a new land use code and zoning plan. The town's Comprehensive Plan is on the books and the Downtown Master Plan should be passed by late summer.

The new county land use code builds off the 2001 Community Plan. It reworks, expands and elaborates on existing regulations; it contains, among other elements, important sections concerning subdivision, oil, gas and mining operations, and provides for eight zoning areas with regulations tuned to each. Work remains to create a zoning map setting those eight districts.

Unfortunately, the current land use code does not include ordinances dealing with nuisances and junk. These are absolutely necessary. All one has to do is enter the county from the west on U.S. 160 to realize the need for junk ordinances and for visual quality standards in corridors.

The town's Master Plan will provide tools needed to deal with development in the downtown area. The plan will provide design standards and guidelines to use as commercial and residential developments are proposed.

With standards and guidelines in place, our elected officials will make decisions that have certifiable, long-range consequences. With the right tools in the box, the biggest concern now is to create a philosophical blueprint that guides their use.

This is not a call for the formation of more public committees, more task forces, to undertake creation of that blueprint. This is no call for innumerable public hearings at which the same story is told again and again. The job of shaping what the town and county could be in 10, 20, 50 years is for our elected officials. We did not elect them to pass the buck; they need to step up to the plate and make decisions relative to a clear plan.

In the county, there is backfilling ahead - note the above-mentioned problem with junk and nuisance properties in highway corridors. A major task is to deal with potential major oil and gas development. One of the responsibilities of county government is to ensure the desirability of this environment - as environment - for residents and visitors. It is our lifeblood: it must have the power to attract visitors who will bring family and friends, spend money and return to enjoy the area again. The job must be done with reasonable respect for private property rights. This is no small feat. It will take a concrete vision, as will consideration of large-scale subdivisions and housing projects that surely loom.

Town officials have a huge decision to make, and soon: Will downtown Pagosa Springs become the economic sump for a growing area, or will it become the centerpiece? Will quality commercial development be encouraged and greeted with flexibility, or will arbitrary reactions drive it elsewhere and promote cheaper, less attractive and effective projects in town? If the choice is for economic growth and to remain in the lead, how can government, within reason, look to the interests of those who cannot swim in the quickening current? If the choice is to force high-quality commercial development to go elsewhere in the town or county, how will town government deal with the transition and its effects on downtown residents?

These and other questions demand a clear-eyed look at what might be around the corner. The answers beg for flexibility, courage and creativity if the greatest good is to flow to the greatest number. We are at a critical point in town and county, and we hope our elected leaders are up to the task. At least they are acquiring the means to actualize their vision - whatever that vision might be.

Karl Isberg


Shari Pierce

90 years ago

Taken from SUN files of May 19, 1916

Otto Hatcher arrived last Friday from Denver for a two weeks' visit. Otto and his brother Sigel have bought the Dave Hersch Cadillac and will soon leave for a trip thru Colorado, Idaho and Montana to buy sheep and incidentally enjoy the scenery.

A week ago Saturday the children's sewing circle of the M.E. Church had samples of their work on display in the Schonefeld store, and prizes were awarded for the neatest and most attractive work in patching, crocheting, sewing, darning and button-hole work. Those winning first prizes were Elsie Dunagan, Alice Oates, Anna May Goodman, Shelley Keith, Opal Friend, Thelma Catchpole, Zella Bostwick, Thelma Flaugh, Zelma Schonefeld and Henrietta Hatcher.

75 years ago

Taken from SUN files of May 29, 1931

Beginning tomorrow the Alley Variety Store will be moved from the Rumbaugh building to the quarters formerly occupied by the Hatcher Hdw. Co. store.

Cleanup day at the cemetery which was held Monday, was a huge success, between forty and fifty spending the day at labor beautifying Pagosa's cemetery. An enjoyable basket dinner was a feature of the day, the ladies of the community furnishing the coffee.

The Pagosa Baseball Club will give another of its famous dances at the Odd Fellows' hall on Saturday night, June 6. On the following Sunday Farmington will cross bats with the Pagosa boys on the local diamond. Both events should draw large attendances.

50 years ago

Taken from SUN files of May 24, 1956

La Plata REA Board of Directors dedicated a new $60,000 engine at the light plant here last Saturday and entertained their employees at a dinner that evening. The new engine is a diesel and is located at the REA plant south of town. The new engine and generator is capable of producing about 700 K, which is enough energy to supply the entire REA in Archuleta County and west almost to Bayfield. This addition to the plant is of great benefit to this area for it means that there will be no prolonged outage of electricity unless the local plant is damaged.

Plans for the Red Ryder Round-Up are progressing nicely and it appears that this will be one of the best rodeos ever presented.

25 years ago

Taken from SUN files of May 28, 1981

If Geothermal Advisory Committee hopes are realized, as many as 107 sites will be heated with hot water this winter. The cost of heating with hot water should be about 55 percent of what it cost to heat with natural gas during September of 1980 according to committee estimates. The Pagosa Springs geothermal utility is scheduled to be ready for user hookups in mid-October. That is the time targeted for completion of system construction. Pagosa Springs will be one of only a few municipalities in the United States to have an operational geothermal heating utility.

Services were held Monday at Hilltop Cemetery to commemorate those who gave their lives in the service of our country.


Heroes in Our Midst: Trevor Peterson, Iraqi Freedom veteran

By Kate Collins

Staff Writer

Trevor Peterson is of the new generation of soldiers.

Although his commitment and goal of defending America matches that of his grandfathers, Peterson entered into a military that is made efficient by rock-crawling Humvees and laser-guided missiles. The military tactics of past centuries have been overhauled, but the hearts and souls of the soldiers who comprise each unit have not changed over the generations.

"My two grandfathers were in the military," said Peterson. "My mom's father, Paul Carpino, served in the Navy after World War II. My dad's father, Wallace Peterson, was a colonel in the Air Force. I have always had an interest in the military, and it was something I could see myself being good at."

Peterson is a Four Corners native and a 2002 graduate of Pagosa Springs High School. His parents, Pete Peterson and Betsy Carpino, continue to reside in Pagosa Springs. Peterson and his brother, Ty, are currently students at Fort Lewis College.

Peterson served three years in the Army with Bravo Company, 2nd Battalion, 187th Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division. Peterson earned the rank of Specialist and spent over six months as a fire team leader of a squad.

On Feb. 28, 2003, Peterson and his unit departed for the Middle East. After three weeks at Camp New Jersey, Kuwait, Peterson and his comrades invaded Iraq on March 20, 2003 as part of Operation Desert Eagle. Their main objective was to set up fueling stations throughout the southern Iraqi desert.

Characteristic of the lightning-fast pace of the war, which earmarks 21st-century warfare, Peterson found himself on the move constantly. After preparing two "rapid refuel points," Bravo Company encountered its first enemy fire.

"Two days after my nineteenth birthday, April 9, my unit secured Objective Zebra, which was a large ammunitions bunker in the city of Ah Hillah. We encountered light resistance from Faydeem fighters outside the city, but were able to have it secure by the end of the day.

"On April 10, we moved north to Baghdad and the front of our convoy was hit by small arms fire. One guy from Delta Company was wounded. This was the first real fighting I had seen since the war started, but it would not be the last," said Peterson. "Later that night, our Apache helicopters engaged Iraqi T-72 tanks that tried to sneak up on us. When we arrived in Baghdad, we took over an old Iraqi anti-air base. From there, we did patrols and searched for Baath Party members.

"On April 18, my unit moved into downtown Baghdad to guard an area called Hospital City, which was near what was left of the Iraqi Ministry of Defense on the Tigris River. It seemed like there was always gunfire, but you couldn't tell if they were fighting each other, celebrating or taking pop shots at us.

"We were involved in a few firefights in Baghdad. The largest firefight we got in while in Baghdad was the day George Bush stood in front of a banner that read 'Mission Accomplished.' Almost my whole company was involved when we exchanged fire with insurgents who were on the other side of the Tigris River - it looked like the Fourth of July and it lasted about twenty minutes," explained Peterson.

"We then moved to the Baghdad Airport, and I took my first shower in 50 days. It was only two minutes long, but it was the best shower I ever had." Peterson's battalion then moved north to the Kurdish town of Sinjar, where they spent seven months rebuilding the community, training Iraqi forces and tracking insurgents before they were called to Mosul to reinforce American infantry regiments. Peterson's company also took part in many well-known missions such as Operation Pandora 1 and 2, Operation Trojan Horse and Operation Bird Dog.

"While I was in Mosul, my friend PFC Lawson and I went to Air Assault School at Q-West," said Peterson. "We were two of only a handful of soldiers to go to Air Assault School in a combat zone."

Peterson and his fellow soldiers moved around quite a bit throughout his first months in Iraq. "Since I was with an Air Assault Light Infantry Unit, we could go almost anywhere and do anything. While we were in Sinjar, my unit and the second, one-hundred eighty-seventh infantry had the largest area of operations in Iraq - almost 6,400 square kilometers. We would do raids, mounted and dismounted patrols, air assault missions, train new police forces, guard schools, watch the Syrian border, and provide a quick reaction force to other units," stated Peterson. "There were times where I would go almost three days without sleep because we would be running non-stop quick reaction force missions and then come back to base and pull four hours of guard. For the first month of the war, I don't remember sleeping."

After returning to Sinjar, Peterson and his company prepared to return to the United States. "We flew out of Mosul on January 15, 2004, and it felt almost unreal. I hadn't seen my family since December of 2002," said Peterson.

Throughout his active service, Peterson found inspiration in his comrades. "My friends in my unit really helped me get through the hard times. I was the second youngest soldier in my company so I was treated like a little brother, almost. I would get pushed around a little, but everyone would stand up for me if I needed anything. The average age in my platoon was about 20 years. We would all experience homesickness together."

Peterson faced many challenges of the fierce Iraqi desert, and rose from them victorious: "One of the worst days of my life was a huge sandstorm early in the war. It was over fourteen hours of seventy-knot winds, and my fighting position was facing right into it. I couldn't eat, see or go to the bathroom. My weapon turned into cement because it was raining a little also. I was choking on so much sand I thought it was going to kill me," said Peterson. "Then, right when the storm ended, the gas alarm went off and I remember grabbing my gas mask full of sand and thinking, 'I'm going to die.' But it was a false alarm.

"I think what spurs everyone in their dreariest moment is wanting to make it back home," explained Peterson when asked where motivation springs from. "My squad leader, Sergeant Watkins, was the best squad leader I ever had. He would always find ways to motivate us and he always led from the front."

Sergeant Watkins earned a Bronze Star for Valor while guarding an underpass from insurgents trying to place roadside bombs. During the same exchange, Peterson displayed maturity beyond his years, and was willing to sacrifice himself for his fellow soldiers: "On the morning of 26 Nov 03, PFC Peterson's actions were above and beyond the call of duty," reads the official report of the incident. "PFC Peterson's actions saved the lives of the soldiers in the friendly convoy." Peterson's comrades PFC Lawson and Specialist Fuenteas earned medals of valor during the same action.

Peterson was part of a highly-trained, highly-efficient unit that completed operations with excellence. "During my time in Iraq, my battalion did not lose a single man. We took 600 men over and brought 600 back. We had 26 men get wounded, though. My battalion is the only unit in the Army to liberate two countries back-to-back since World War II. Before Iraq, a lot of my buddies were in the first wave to attack the Taliban in Afghanistan," said Peterson. "Right now, my unit is back in Iraq, and my good friend Nyle Yates III, 22, was killed by a sniper (in March)."

Memories are strong for every soldier, and Peterson remembers clearly the odors of Baghdad. "Because there was no power for the freezers in the morgue, it would smell like dead bodies all the time, while guarding the hospital in Baghdad," recalled Peterson. "When we finally left Hospital City, that smell seemed to follow us for a while. Even now, when I smell something rotting, it reminds me of the smell of death in Baghdad."

Peterson learned many life lessons from his military service and sees the fruit of those lessons daily.

"I've learned not to take things so much for granted," said Peterson. "I've learned to work well with many different kinds of people. I'm a lot more aggressive - in a good way - and, overall, more disciplined. I'm more into politics and I watch the news a lot more. I can say, 'Hey — I've been there.' I've been to Baghdad, and not many people can say that. I've done more than most people will do in their entire life, and I'm proud of that. I met some of the coolest people in my life and made some lifelong friends.

"I'm glad I got to be a part of history," added Peterson.

The foundations of our country - democracy, freedom of speech and religion, equality of all people - can only be built upon when they are defended by its citizens. By young people willing to stand up and risk their futures to provide a future for the rest of us. Peterson represents a new generation of soldiers, dedicated to preserving the freedoms their fathers and grandfathers secured. The motto of Peterson's unit says it best: "Let Valor Not Fail."

To the soldiers of today and yesteryear, we will forever be indebted.

Pagosa's Past

The incident at Wagon Mound

By John Motter

Scarcely 125 years have passed since the last of the major wars between Anglos and the Western Apaches in this country.

War with the Jicarilla Apaches, now neighbors of Archuleta County, started and ended two or three decades sooner. In fact, Anglo settlers and their military defenders encountered the Jicarilla almost as soon as Anglo traders entered New Mexico along the Santa Fe Trail.

The first encounter with Jicarilla that gained national attention was the raiding of an Anglo party near Wagon Mound, N.M., in 1849. If you ever get the chance, visit Wagon Mound. The old city still has a lot of adobe buildings and much of the flavor of New Mexico prior to Anglo dominance. We'll present Kit Carson's version of the Wagon Mound incident and then, just to show a different view point, the Jicarilla version as written by Dr. Veronica Tiller, a Jicarilla historian.

As we pick up the story from last week, merchant James M. White has moved ahead of the rest of his caravan because he feels close enough to white settlements to be safe from Indian attack. He is near Wagon Mound, a point along the Santa Fe Trail. Only a few men escort White and his family.

When the Jicarilla attack, all of the men are slain, while Mrs. White and her small daughter are taken prisoner by the Jicarilla.

"A party was organized in Taos with Antoine Leroux and a Fisher to rescue them. When they reached Rayado, I (Kit Carson) joined them. We marched to the place where the depredation had been committed, and then followed the trail of the Indians. I was the first man to discover the camp where the murder had been perpetrated. The trunks of the unfortunate family had been broken open, the harnesses cut to pieces, and everything else that the Indians could not carry away with them had been destroyed. We tracked them for 10 or 12 days over the most difficult trail that I have ever followed. Upon leaving their camps they would separate in small groups of two or three persons and travel in different directions, to meet again at some appointed place. In nearly every camp we found some of Mrs. White's clothing, and these discoveries spurred us to continue the pursuit with renewed energy.

"We finally came in view of the Indian camp. I was in advance, and at once started for it, calling for our men to come on. The commanding officer (Major William N. Grier of the First U.S. Dragoons) ordered a halt, however, and no one followed me. I was afterward informed that Leroux, the principal guide, had advised the commanding officer to halt us, as the Indians wished to have a parley. The latter, seeing that the troops did not intend to charge, commenced packing up in all haste. Just as the halt was ordered, the commanding officer was shot; the ball passed through his coat, his gauntlets that were in his pocket, and his shirt, stopping at the skin and doing no other damage than making him a little sick at the stomach. The gauntlets had saved his life, sparing a gallant officer to the service of his country. As soon as he had recovered from the shock given him by the ball, he ordered the men to charge, but it was too late to save the captives. There was only one Indian left in the camp, who was promptly shot while he was running into the river in a vain effort to escape. At a distance of about 200 yards, the body of Mrs. White was found, still perfectly warm. She had been shot through the heart with an arrow not more than five minutes before. She evidently knew that someone was coming to her rescue. Although she did not see us, it was apparent that she was endeavoring to make her escape when she received the fatal shot.

"I am certain that if the Indians had been charged immediately on our arrival, she would have been saved. They did not know of our approach, and as they were not paying any particular attention to her, perhaps she could have managed to run toward us, and if she had, the Indians would have been afraid to follow her. However, the treatment she had received from them was so brutal and horrible she could not have lived very long."

Next week, we'll present an Apache account of the White incident.

Pagosa Sky Watch

Planets, constellations, a 'stargazer-friendly moonrise'

By James Robinson

Staff Writer

The following sun and moon data is provided by the United States Naval Observatory.

Sunrise: 5:52 a.m.

Sunset: 8:18 p.m.

Moonrise: 4:30 a.m.

Moonset: 7:05 p.m.

Moon phase: Waning crescent with 3 percent of the visible disk illuminated. The new moon is May 26 at 11:26 p.m. MDT.

Tonight and through the weekend, the new moon, coupled with "stargazer friendly" moonrise and moonset times should make for superb skywatching conditions with opportunities to view three planets and two faint constellations.

The action begins tonight after 10 p.m. when skies are fully dark and the constellations Hercules and Corona Borealis are well above the horizon.

At first glance, the pair, due to their relative proximity, may appear related, yet contrary to appearances, each has its own distinct story grounded in the Greek mythical tradition.

According to the mythology, the constellation Hercules represents the eponymous Greek hero who became legendary for accomplishing twelve, supposedly impossible labors.

Ultimately, Hercules' deeds earned him a place in the heavens, and the night sky around the hero is peppered with many constellations relating to his superhuman exploits.

However, while the Greek tradition has persisted until today, the constellation's story hasn't always been linked to that of the Greek hero. In fact, at one time, the constellation was viewed as an anonymous kneeling man, and the Sumerians identified the constellation with their own epic hero Gilgamesh.

Although early stargazers, depending on their cultural traditions, saw different characters represented by the constellation, one fact remains - no matter your cultural perspective, the outline of Hercules sprawls across a vast tract of sky, and the constellation's size lives up to a hero's stature.

And while Hercules is notably huge, its neighbor, Corona Borealis, also known as the Northern Crown, is markedly small.

According to the legend, the Northern Crown represents the crown worn by the Cretan princess Ariadne. In the story, Ariadne eloped with Theseus after helping him slay the Minotaur, but Theseus later abandoned his bride on the island of Naxos. Left stranded and alone, Ariadne was desperate, but her fortunes changed when the god Bacchus discovered her and rescued her from the island and in the process became stricken by her beauty. The two soon fell in love and ultimately married. On the day of their wedding, Bacchus was so overjoyed with his new found love that he removed Ariadne's crown and threw it into the sky to commemorate the occasion.

Unfortunately, without dark skies, it can be difficult to fully discern the semi-circular pattern of Ariadne's crown or to explore Hercules beyond its central pattern, known as the Keystone. However, with just a thin crescent moon, coupled with advantageous moon set times, stargazers stand an excellent chance of being able to identify the main stars in both constellations.

To view Hercules and Corona Borealis, begin by facing east at about 10:30 p.m. Next, due to Hercules' size, it may be helpful to identify two key landmarks, between which, stargazers can focus their observations.

The first and uppermost landmark is the burnt-orange star Arcturus. Arcturus is the alpha star in the kite-shaped constellation Bootes and is the fourth brightest star in the sky. Arcturus can be found burning brightly about the 20 degrees above the horizon.

From Arcturus, travel in a line diagonally down and to the left to a point about five degrees above the horizon where you will find the second landmark - Vega - a brilliant, blue-white star and the fifth brightest in the sky. About midway between Vega and Arcturus lies the Keystone of Hercules and the constellation Corona Borealis. The Keystone lies slightly lower in the sky, closer to Vega, whereas the Northern Crown lies just above and slightly to the right of the Keystone and closer to Arcturus.

Stargazers intent on tracing the entire outline of each constellation should consult a star chart, however their is plenty to see for the more casual observer.

For those equipped with binoculars, six of the seven stars in semi-circular band of Corona Borealis should be visible. Those viewing with the naked eye should be able to easily locate the crown's brightest star, Alphecca, or Gemma, a magnitude 2.2, blue-white, main sequence star located about midway along band.

In Hercules, naked eye observers will undoubtedly be able to trace the quadrilateraly-shaped Keystone, which marks the hero's pelvis, however, the constellation's brightest star, Rasalgethi, is located below, and slightly to the right of the Keystone shape.

Rasalgethi is a massive, red giant star roughly 400 times the sun's diameter, and is one of the largest stars known. Like many red giants, its magnitude fluctuates, with Rasalgethi's magnitude varying between magnitude 3 and magnitude 4.

With the naked eye or through binoculars, Rasalgethi will appear as a single star, although telescopes will reveal Rasalgethi's magnitude 5.4 blue-green companion.

Moving back to the Keystone, stargazers with binoculars or telescopes should not miss M13, one of the most spectacular globular clusters in the northern sky.

To locate M13, begin at the upper left corner of the Keystone and pan slowly to the right. Under prime dark sky conditions, M13 can be viewed with the naked eye.

While Hercules and Corona Borealis will remain prominent throughout the summer months, providing stargazers with numerous viewing opportunities, those intent on using the moon to help them locate Mercury, Mars and Saturn should mark their calendars.

On Sunday, May 28, just before nightfall, the thin crescent moon will hover just above Mercury.

At just 3,000 miles in diameter, not even half the diameter of Earth, Mercury can be difficult to locate with the naked eye, although binoculars make for an ideal Mercury-viewing tool. Be sure to locate an ideal viewing location early, because Mercury sets rapidly, and by the time it is completely dark, the planet will be long gone.

The next date to mark is Tuesday, May 30, when the crescent moon snuggles next to one of our closest planetary neighbors - Mars.

And finally, on Wednesday, May 31, the moon will appear to rest directly above the beautiful, ringed planet Saturn.


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