June 8, 2006

Front Page

Town sets criteria for approval of Rock Ridge project

By James Robinson

Staff Writer

A development long touted as an affordable housing project inched one step closer to fruition, with Tuesday's Pagosa Springs Town Council approval of the preliminary plan for the proposed Homes at Rock Ridge Planned Unit Development.

However, the town council's approval was not without stipulations.

In a motion put forth by council member Bill Whitbred, and approved by the council, before project developers Todd and Doug Shelton receive final approval for their project, they are required to: commit in writing to their proportionate share of the cost of Great West Avenue and U.S. 160 intersection improvements as determined by a future traffic study; commit in writing to an acceptable and agreeable plan to provide affordable housing; help facilitate the creation of a trail network linking the development to the Pagosa Springs Elementary School; and commit to improving and paving Baldwin Way.

The project is located near the intersection of U.S. 160 and Great West Avenue, and includes plans for 77 residential units, with 108 units slated for buildout. Although it was unclear during the town council meeting whether the units were single-family residences or duplexes, Joe Niggs, associate planner for the Town of Pagosa Springs, said current plans call for 48 duplex units and three four-plexes and an open space component. The subdivision is currently designed to provide hookups for 77 mobile homes.

Although the site is currently in unincorporated Archuleta County, the town and developers have discussed the site's annexation into the town.

Whitbred's motion stems from a 16-item list of town planning staff concerns, among them the potential for project-related traffic impacts at the intersection of Great West Avenue and U.S. 160, proposed roads exceeding the town's 8-percent grade limit, right of way widths and other engineering concerns, and a clear explanation as to how the developer plans to maintain the project as a truly attainable or affordable housing development.

While many issues have been resolved, including many engineering concerns, the Great West Avenue/U.S. 160 issue, Alpha residents concerns that the development's connection to their road system via Baldwin Way will negatively impact their subdivision, and questions regarding guarantees of maintaining the project as affordable housing remain. As do concerns from council member Tony Simmons regarding potential ex-parté contact related to the project.

In an e-mail from Town Planner Tamra Allen, and provided by Simmons, Allen suggested that the council, during a Monday town council work session regarding the Rock Ridge project, discuss and disclose any ex-parté contacts that may have occurred.

As defined by the Department of Local Affairs, ex parté contact is any written or verbal communication initiated outside of a regularly noticed public hearing between an official with decision-making authority and one or more of the parties, concerning a particular subject matter which is about to come under consideration by that official, and which seeks either to influence or present information relating the matter, which is the subject of the decision.

Speaking to the council, Patsy Lindblad, of the Alpha/Rockridge Homeowners Association urged the town to engage the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) in a dialogue regarding the Great West Avenue/U.S. 160 issue before final approval takes place.

John Hundley of BootJack Management also urged the council to include CDOT in the process and to undertake a traffic study before final approval.

In responding to the public's and town council's concerns, Shelton said, "Before we build the seventy-eighth unit, the highway 160 and Great West Avenue have to be resolved."

Throughout the meeting, the Sheltons maintained that providing affordable housing remained a priority, and Todd Shelton said, "Our goal is to work with the city to get the affordable housing in place."

In other Pagosa Springs Town Council action:

- the council approved, on second reading, Ordinance 662, regarding development impact fees and fees in lieu of public lands dedication. According to the ordinance, impact fees and fees in lieu of public land dedication include impact fees for: roads, regional public buildings, regional recreation facilities, parks, trails, an emergency service provider, water storage and school fees in lieu of public land dedication.

As written, impact fees for a single-family residential unit are as follows:

Roads: $818

Regional Public Buildings: $450

Regional Recreation Facilities: $859

Parks: $368

Trails: $464

Emergency Service Provider: $574

Water Storage: $1,129

School Fees in Lieu of Public Land Dedication: $283

According to the document, developers requesting development approval will pay the impact fees upon submittal of a complete application and all submittal requirements.

In cases where development activities require multiple approvals, such as in annexation, zoning, subdivision and building permit approval, "impact fees shall be paid upon the earliest development activity to occur for which the amount of impact fees can be reasonably calculated.

- the council approved a continuation of an emergency ordinance passed to suspend processing applications for big box developments. With the most current ordinance set to expire June 15, the council's approval allows for an extension until Sept. 15.

Town Manager Mark Garcia said town attorney Robert Cole is recommending this be the town's final big box moratorium.

The town has enacted various big box moratoria since August 2004. Town council member Stan Holt said a big box ordinance is being crafted and is close to completion, although a final product is not yet ready for presentation to the town council.

"Progress is being made, and were almost there," said Holt.

She puts the O in Pagosa

By Sarah O. Smith

Staff Writer

Why should Oprah visit your hometown?

For Pagosan Maria Gallegos, 24, many reasons come to mind. So when Gallegos discovered a contest on Oprah's Web site asking the same question, she decided to enter.

"Everybody at my work was laughing at me, but I thought it was worth it, I may as well try," said Gallegos. "I wasn't expecting anything."

Gallegos wrote a letter to Oprah in April 2005 detailing what makes Pagosa Springs worth the trip. As a lifelong resident of Pagosa, Gallegos was more than qualified to do justice to the unique aspects of our town in her descriptions. She told Oprah of the beauty of Pagosa's scenery and changing seasons, the kindness of its people, and how much she enjoyed working as a concierge at The Springs Resort.

"I just described Pagosa really well," said Gallegos.

Gallegos said since Oprah gets millions of letters, she "didn't expect anything back." But that didn't stop her from wondering "what if?" for most of this past year.

Gallegos is a self-described "fan and a half," and cites Oprah as her idol.

"I watch her religiously, every day," said Gallegos. "She's got the best heart. She gives a lot."

So when Gallegos received a call at work June 1 from Oprah's crew telling her they were coming to interview her, she was shocked.

The crew told Gallegos they were coming without Oprah, and that she should be prepared to give a interview about why Oprah should come to her hometown for an upcoming show.

The crew also told Gallegos to keep the visit quiet. "They said, 'Don't tell a soul.' I thought that was odd, but I wasn't gonna get my hopes up," said Gallegos. "I wasn't expecting Oprah. I was freaking out, even for just the crew."

Around 1 p.m. Oprah's film crew arrived at The Springs. Gallegos said they walked in the door backwards because they were filming.

"Then Oprah peeks her head in the door and says 'Is Maria here?'"

After a year of waiting, Oprah had answered her letter and visited her hometown.

"I couldn't even talk. I was about to faint," said Gallegos. "My boss was crying."

Oprah arrived with her film crew and her best friend, Gayle King. Gallegos said after the initial shock, Oprah took her hand and they walked together through The Springs, talking and soaking their feet in the tubs. "She talked to me about how dreams really do come true."

Oprah also asked Gallegos if she'd seen an episode of her show the previous week. Funnily enough, Oprah asked Gallegos about the one episode she hadn't seen. She'd missed the show because she'd had to work late, and she "felt like my whole week was thrown off." Oprah said Gallegos had to see the episode and got her address to send her a copy. She also told her she'd call her to let her know when the episode featuring her visit to Pagosa would air.

Oprah and her crew then went to lunch at Kip's Grill and Cantina, where Gallegos and her mother, Mardel, later joined her. Word got out quickly, and a crowd formed around the entrance to Kip's, everyone trying to get a better look at Oprah. Oprah shook some hands and posed for some photos, but then asked not to be disturbed so she could enjoy her lunch.

"She was actually here just for me," said Gallegos. "It was crazy. It's still a dream."

Oprah didn't specify exactly why she chose Pagosa Springs - she simply told Maria that her letter "caught her eye" and she thought she'd surprise her.

"She said she'd never even heard of Pagosa Springs. She thought it was beautiful."

Oprah did sign copy of the letter Gallegos wrote her, including the inscription, "Maria - you were worth the trip and so was Pagosa Springs!"

"I've always said I had to meet her before I die," said Gallegos. "That was my dream."

Snowpack 6% of average, reservoir issues remain

By Chuck McGuire

Staff Writer

As of June 1, the combined snowpack of the San Juan, Animas and Dolores river basins was 6 percent of average. That's right, just 6 percent.

According to the Natural Resources Conservation Service of the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, continued warm dry weather over the past couple of months has drastically reduced the Colorado high-country snowpack. Therefore, as one would expect, water - or the availability of it - captured the lion's share of attention at the regular monthly meeting of the San Juan Water Conservancy District, Tuesday.

In a presentation to the district board, Val Valentine, of the Colorado Division of Water Resources, reiterated the state of the Upper San Juan basin snowpack by relating it to water equivalent. "Normally, at this time of year," he said, "there are 24.8 inches of water in the snow on Wolf Creek Pass. Right now, there are just 1.3 inches up there."

Valentine further described how the runoff from snowmelt in the San Juan basin has already reached its peak, and flows are now moderating. "The river was at about 1,700 CFS (cubic feet per second) before Memorial Day, and right now it's holding at between 600 and 700 CFS."

Valentine also explained how senior water rights in some of the area's smaller creeks are already on call, meaning those water users holding junior rights may face water shortages in the near future.

As unusually warm and dry weather has persisted over the past two months, the prolonged drought gripping southern Colorado and the west continues. By the end of May, the statewide snowpack had dropped to just 26 percent of average, even after a long string of storms dumped well-above-average snows on the northern half of the state through January.

And, while forecasters predict the possibility of afternoon and evening thunderstorms over the next few days, little relief is in sight. According to the National Weather Service and AccuWeather.com, skies will remain mostly sunny through the next two weeks, with only a slight chance of storms through Saturday. Daytime highs should reach the low- to mid-80s, while lows will likely range in the mid- to upper 40s.

Fortunately, many of Colorado's reservoirs are in good shape, with water volumes at or above average levels. But as dry weather continues and water users call for releases, levels will fall, and some shortages may develop.

In other matters concerning water availability, the SJWCD also discussed a proposed reservoir project planned for the Dry Gulch area east of Pagosa Springs. While the district awaits a judge's decision in a case filed by Trout Unlimited, it is working to acquire land necessary to accommodate the impoundment, once the case is settled.

The reservoir proposal is a joint venture involving the district and the Pagosa Area Water and Sanitation District. As envisioned, it will eventually hold about 35,000 acre feet of water and encompass roughly 500 surface acres of territory. Though progress in its development continues, completion, or even construction, isn't anticipated for several years. But, when the time comes, proponents hope to divert up to 200 cubic feet per second (CFS) of water from the San Juan River to fill it.

Therein lies Trout Unlimited's concern.

While TU doesn't question the need for, or location of the project, it believes its proposed size is well beyond the future water needs of both districts, and it believes diverting 200 CFS from the river will drastically reduce its flow and harm aquatic life. In fact, TU believes that during times of low flows, like those seen through the summer of 2002, such a diversion could completely de-water the river.

However, at Tuesday's meeting SJWCD chair Fred Schmidt assured the public that a legally required "bypass" of 50 CFS would prevent the districts, or any other junior water rights holders, from drawing any water from the river when its flow drops to 50 CFS or less.

Meanwhile, with a court rendering still a week or two away, the SJWCD board watched Tuesday night's town council meeting closely, as the council considered the possible imposition of additional impact fees on new construction within town limits. One in particular, the Water Storage Impact Fee, ultimately passed, and will soon provide revenue exclusively for land acquisition and construction of the new reservoir.

While scheduled completion of the Dry Gulch Reservoir is still a long way off, current drought conditions have local water districts, and water users, looking forward to additional storage. But first, all must wait and see what a judge's final opinion is.


Inside The Sun

New local investigator for District Attorney's Office

Sarah O. Smith

Staff Writer

George Daniels was sworn in Tuesday, June 6, as the new investigator for the District Attorney's Office, Sixth Judicial District.

Employed in the law enforcement field for over 20 years, Daniels previously worked in both the Pagosa Springs Police Department, as a patrol officer and investigator, and the Archuleta County Sheriff's Department, as a detective.

Since the District Attorney's Office works closely with both the police department and the sheriff's office, Daniels thinks his past experience with both agencies makes him well equipped for the job.

He will be based in Pagosa Springs and will take the reins from investigator Pete Gonzales June 16, when Gonzales retires.

Traffic delays at Aspen Village begin soon

By James Robinson

Staff Writer

As work continues on U.S. 160 near Aspen Village, motorists traveling through the west side of Pagosa Springs should plan for construction-related traffic delays.

Beginning early next week, project manager Mike Church said Boulder Drive at U.S. 160 will be closed, with a detour route provided through Aspen Village Drive and Cornerstone Drive.

Later in the week, Church said Alpha Drive will be closed at U.S. 160 and Aspen Village Drive will serve as the detour route.

Church said he anticipates detours in the project area lasting roughly three weeks, and that motorists unfamiliar with the area should follow the signs. The routes will be well marked, he said.

The U.S. 160 construction is part of the Aspen Village project and will include widening the highway; installation of acceleration and deceleration lanes; installation of a traffic signal at the intersection of U.S. 160 and Aspen Village Drive; and 5,000 cubic yards of grading and safety improvements.

Church said peak commuter hours, 7-8:30 a.m. and 4:30-6 p.m., have been designated as "no work" hours, and commuters can expect all lanes to be open.

The most significant delays will occur during the primary project work hours of 8:30 a.m-4:30 p.m.

Church encouraged motorists to plan ahead and allow extra time to travel across town during peak construction times.

The speed limit through the work zone is 35 miles per hour.

Church said the project remains on schedule, with an Aug. 1, targeted completion date.

For questions or project updates, call Aspen Village at 731-3655.

District likely to cut School Within a School program

Sarah O. Smith

Staff Writer

While the creation of five new math positions at the elementary school is expected to raise math scores to No Child Left Behind standards, it will likely be at the expense of the district's School Within a School program.

Elimination of the program was not formally approved at the Archuleta County School District 50 Jt. school board meeting May 9; however, Superintendent Duane Noggle stated that the board did approve the new math positions, and "it's pretty much decided." The final decision will be made at the June session.

"No Child Left Behind places very high demands on the school for accountability and test results," said Terry Alley, grant writer for the district. These high demands make it difficult for alternative classroom options like the School Within a School program, which is geared towards integrating the interests of students with the learning process through high parental involvement, community service and multi-age classrooms, to meet state standards. Alley said the School Within a School program found it too difficult to implement new grant-funded reading programs in the multi-age classroom.

"We do have to teach to the state standards, that's a requirement," said Noggle. "Unfortunately, No Child Left Behind is narrowing the curriculum. A form-fitting curriculum is not possible anymore."

While the format of School Within a School may no longer be possible, Noggle said the high parental involvement characteristic of the program will still be promoted. "We do not discourage parental involvement in any way, shape or form," said Noggle. Parents will be welcome to attend the monthly school accountability committee meetings, at which policies and curriculums will be reviewed.

Noggle said math is "an area where we're really falling short." The new math specialists will address math needs, and also appease the need for more teacher planning time. Elementary school teachers have the least amount of planning time, and they will receive an extra 50 minutes of planning time while their students are studying with the math specialists.

"The big issue we needed to solve was more planning time for teachers," said Noggle. Noggle said the extra planning time will not only allow teachers more time to plan their instruction and to grade papers, but also to monitor students more intensely so intervention - for struggling and excelling students - can be achieved. It will also provide a teacher time to collaborate with other teachers. Noggle said this is important because teachers can look at the achievement gaps between grades and "make sure we didn't miss something."

"The whole idea is we're a team. We need to provide support for teaching staff to work as a team," said Noggle. "Collaboration is important."

Noggle said the local school district currently receives 40 percent of its budget from state funding. If the district fails to meet benchmarks and standards for each grade, it can be put on "accreditation watch," and the state can take over the school district.

"Its limiting some of the innovation at the local level," said Noggle. "The curriculum has to change with the state requirements. We have to be willing to make those changes and those tough decisions. This was a very tough one."

The final decision will come at the June meeting, when the school board will vote on the new budget. If the budget is approved, the School Within a School program will be eliminated to make room for the new math positions.

"Anytime you cut a program, it's painful. We understand that," said Noggle. "But times change and we need to change with them."

Deitch qualifies for Democratic primary ballot

Durango resident Jeff Deitch has qualified for the Democratic primary to represent the 59th District in the Colorado House of Representatives. Deitch bypassed the traditional caucus process and instead collected more than 2,000 petition signatures to qualify for the ballot.

In a press release, Deitch said residents of all counties in the district - Archuleta, La Plata, Montezuma and San Juan - joined in his petition effort. "I'm very grateful to the voters for participating in the petition process and showing their support for it," Deitch said. "People are telling me they're dissatisfied with old-style politics and I'm listening."

Deitch said he intends to campaign vigorously throughout the 59th District. He will face former Durango mayor Joe Colgan in the Aug. 8 primary.

John Egan on local Democratic primary ballot

By James Robinson

Staff Writer

Despite continued differences in interpretation of state election statutes between local Democrats and Archuleta County Clerk and Recorder June Madrid, one fact remains - John Egan will appear on the primary ballot as the Democratic nominee to the District 3 county commissioner's seat.

This was the word from both Madrid and Archuleta County Democrats; however, naming John Egan as the sole nominee to the ballot has not gone without some confusion.

Following former District 3 commissioner Mamie Lynch's resignation May 31, Democrats rallied to fill her position, and, as allowed by state statute, appointed John Egan to the post.

However, during the same meeting, and following Egan's appointment, Democrats then nominated Egan and Ken Levine as the Democratic nominees for the District 3 county commissioner's slot on the August primary ballot.

Rich Goebel, first vice chair of the Archuleta County Democratic Central Committee, speaking for party chair Ben Douglas who is out of town, said the "thirty-percent rule kicked in," and because both men received more than 30 percent of the central committee vote, both men were entitled to a place on the a ballot.

"At the party meeting May 30, Levine received thirty-four percent of the votes and candidate John Egan received sixty-five percent. Both men were legally qualified to run and have their names on the ballot," wrote Goebel in a press release.

But in nominating two candidates, Madrid said the Democrats misconstrued and errantly combined state statutes - one regarding appointment of a candidate following an elected official's resignation; and the second, a separate statute regarding a party's entitlement to appoint a candidate to the primary ballot via a central committee decision when no candidate is produced during the assembly process.

With red flags raised following the two-man appointment, Madrid said she contacted the Colorado Attorney General's office for clarification.

In a letter to Douglas, Madrid wrote, "I have contacted the office of the Colorado Secretary of State and the Attorney General's Office for guidance in the matter. The Attorney General's Office has offered his opinion that the Democrats may only nominate one candidate as there is only one vacancy. I need to abide by this decision. Therefore, I am notifying you of my decision that only Mr. John Egan's name will be certified onto the 2006 Primary ballot."

Goebel said he and local Democrats stand firm in their convictions, and that their understanding of the statutes was derived from extensive consultations with party election experts in Denver.

Goebel said he believes the party had the option to name as many as three candidates, however in his press release, he writes that Levine has withdrawn his name from the race and Egan will stand as the sole candidate.

"The party is better off marshaling all forces toward one candidate," Levine said.

Goebel said Egan is on a long-awaited and well-deserved family vacation, and he anticipates Egan will return to Pagosa Springs to take his commissioner's oath on June 16.

Egan will face Republican challenger Bob Moomaw in November for the District 3, Archuleta County Commissioner's seat.

Celebracion del Rio San Juan raises funds with fun

By Sarah O. Smith

Staff Writer

The annual Celebracion del Rio San Juan proved once again to be a hit, drawing a large crowd to Town Park Sunday to enjoy music, food, contests, raffles and, of course, the river.

The celebration began at 11 a.m. when volunteers arrived to help clean up the river. Connie Cook of The Friends of the Upper San Juan said the volunteers hauled two truckloads of trash out of the park. "The parks look so awesome," said Cook. "It looks great out here."

Crowds gathered in the newly-cleaned park to play, relax and participate in numerous contests. Four bands entertained the crowd; String Theory, Up the Creek, Brook's Trout, and The Flying Elmos. Amber Farnham drew the loudest cheers from the crowd and won the kayak freestyle contest by riding a giant inflatable turtle. Ellen Warren, Morgan Reed and Reed's daughter, Samantha, won the raft race in a cataract boat. P.J. Herrera won the rubber duckie race.

Cook said the raffles and donations raised over $3,000 for the organization. The Friends of the Upper San Juan is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting, celebrating and caring for our local stretch of the San Juan. Also, $800 was raised to purchase new whitewater gear for Archuleta County Search and Rescue.

Several large prizes were given away in the raffle, including a pair of tickets to this weekend's IndieFest, which were awarded to Tom and Nancy Torrey. Gina Willis of Coyote Hill Lodge donated $500 by purchasing several raffle tickets and duckies for the race. She also bought T-shirts, decorated with art by Randall Davis, for all volunteers. Willis' charity paid off when she won kayaking lessons and a $200 gift certificate from Switchback Mountain Sports.

"It was a huge success and we had a lot of fun," said Cook. "We look forward to next year."

Critical Access Hospital project 'on a fast track'

By Chuck McGuire

Staff Writer

At Tuesday's regular board meeting of the Upper San Juan Health Service District, discussion primarily centered on the upcoming Critical Access Hospital in Pagosa Springs.

With the project "on a fast track," designers opened the meeting with a presentation and consideration of a schematic drawing showing what is believed to be the final layout of the planned facility. Steve Riley and Jim Classe, of the architectural firm Prochaska and Associates, described the most recent changes made to both the schematic and site plan, resulting in a smaller, more efficient design, and reducing construction costs, allowing builders to remain on budget.

As planned, the single-level structure will incorporate the existing Mary Fisher Clinic and encompass 32,317 square feet, including a 1,384 square-foot ambulance garage.

Though designers reduced the original plan by approximately 1,850 square feet as a cost-saving measure, they also shifted the original footprint 50 feet to the east, saving considerable costs in excavation and site work. According to planners and the district, the current design does not sacrifice function or amenities, and will allow ample future expansion as needed.

In other hospital-related business, the USJHSD board verbally agreed to a six-month contract with Larry Arthur, a consultant from Healthcare Capital Resources, to act as manager of the new hospital, once it's up and running. Arthur will be paid $5,000 a month for his services, until a permanent chief executive officer is found.

Contracts with G.E. Johnson Construction and Cooper Medical Consulting were also considered and approved, which sets in motion the processes of pre-construction consulting, construction and the actual equipping of the new hospital.

While the exterior elevation, finish materials and other intricate design details have yet to be worked out, groundbreaking is planned for late August or early September. Final completion is scheduled for the fall of 2007.

Claws for a Cause SIDS fund-raiser comes to Pagosa, place orders now

On June 17, loads of lobsters will embark on a nearly 2,000 mile trek from Boston to various dinner tables throughout Pagosa Springs as part of the annual Claws for a Cause fund-raiser. In its 29th year, this event is the largest, and longest-running event of its kind.

In partnership with Wells Fargo, Steamboat Resorts, Bathgate Capital Partners and InstaKey, the Colorado SIDS Program hopes to raise over $70,000 to support its bereavement counseling and educational services.

"Many people think that SIDS no longer exists," said Tena Saltzman, executive director, "however, babies are still dying. Without this event," she continued, "we would no longer be able to fund our programs which help the families affected by SIDS. Furthermore, we need to continually reinforce the message to parents on ways to reduce their baby's risk of SIDS."

In addition to live lobsters and frozen lobster tails, Claws for a Cause offers filet mignon and burgers from Colorado's own Maverick Ranch Natural Meats. With special pricing to the SIDS Program from Maverick Ranch and James Hook & Co. in Boston, the Colorado SIDS Program can offer these items at reasonable prices.

All lobster (and steak) lovers are invited to place their orders by June 9 for pickup on June 17. Orders are to be picked up between 1 and 2 p.m. at St. Patrick's Episcopal Church, 115 South Pagosa Boulevard.

Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, or SIDS, is the leading cause of death among infants between one month to one year of age, and claims the lives of about 2,500 infants each year in the United States. It remains unpredictable despite years of research.

The Colorado SIDS Program serves as the only organization in Colorado dedicated to raising awareness of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome and its effect on families. By providing free support groups, counseling and other bereavement services, the SIDS Program is available to any family who has lost an infant suddenly and unexpectedly. In addition, the staff of the SIDS Program provides risk reduction information and presentations throughout the state to parents, child care providers, medical professionals and first responders.

For more information contact Vicky Lubthisophon, (888) 285-7437.

Deadline extended for College in Colorado Scholarship program

As Colorado's middle and high school students register and plan for their classes next fall, CollegeInvest reminds them to consider the College in Colorado Scholarship program.

Funded by CollegeInvest, a not-for-profit division of the Colorado Department of Higher Education, the College in Colorado Scholarship (CIC) encourages students to consider college a realistic and affordable option for their future. It prepares them for college by requiring that participants take rigorous coursework while still in high school. Furthermore, the scholarship provides incentive for Colorado's low-income eighth-, ninth- and 10th-graders to register for college preparatory courses now with the goal of receiving financial support to attend college when that time comes.

Students who meet all of the requirements for the CIC Scholarship will qualify for up to $1,500 in assistance per year at a qualifying Colorado college.

"We hope that this scholarship will convince more Colorado students that they can afford a college education if they want one," said Debra DeMuth, director of CollegeInvest. "Lack of financial resources should not deter academically prepared students from pursuing postsecondary education. With the CIC scholarship, the key is simply early planning,"

To be eligible for the CIC Scholarship, a student must:

- Be a legal Colorado resident and apply during eighth or ninth grade. During the 2005-2006 school year only, 10th-grade students may also apply. In the future however, only eighth- and ninth-graders will be eligible.

- Maintain a 2.5 unweighted cumulative GPA or equivalent for all coursework completed in grades nine through 12.

- Take selected pre-collegiate coursework throughout their high school career.

- Qualify for financial aid in the form of a Federal Pell Grant upon enrollment in college (current income of approximately $40,000 or less for a family of four).

Deadline for current ninth and 10th-grade students has been extended from June 1 to Aug. 1, 2006. (Current eighth- graders have until June 1, 2007, to apply.) Download an application at CollegeInColorado.org or call CollegeInvest at 1-800-COLLEGE for more information.

The College in Colorado Scholarship is just one resource to help Colorado students and families pay for college. For additional financing resources, visit the CollegeInvest Web site at www.collegeinvest.org.

CollegeInvest is a not-for-profit division of the Colorado Department of Higher Education that helps Colorado students and families overcome the financial barriers to college. Since 1979, CollegeInvest has helped more than half a million families pay for college through low-cost student and parent loans, college savings plans, scholarships, free information and planning tools.

Public invited to Government Water Roundtable

The public is invited to attend the next meeting of the Government Water Roundtable 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Wednesday, June 14, at the San Juan Public Lands Center.

The agenda will include preliminary drafts of some of the water-related content to be addressed by National Forest and BLM plan revisions. The agenda will also include follow-up discussions on baselines for permit renewals, by-pass flows, Ditch Bill easements, facility issues, and the Wild and Scenic River inventory.

Opportunities for public interaction and questions will be offered throughout the day.

Meetings are hosted by the San Juan Public Lands Center to discuss management of water on BLM and U.S. Forest Service lands in southwestern Colorado. Information gathered at the meetings will be incorporated into the upcoming San Juan National Forest Land Management Plan and the BLM Resource Management Plan.

Health department creates program for Latino residents

Promoviendo la Salud is a new grant-funded program of the San Juan Basin Health Department.

The goal of Promoviendo La Salud is to reduce health disparities among Latino residents of Archuleta and La Plata counties.

The primary focus is the prevention of chronic disease, including cervical and breast cancer, diabetes and cardiovascular illness. The method is to access the target population via culturally appropriate outreach activities, provide information and education to empower people to make healthy lifestyle choices, identify individuals who might be at risk for chronic disease, and assist those individuals in managing their health.

The staff of Promoviendo consists of a nurse coordinator, a health educator and three "promotoras," or community health workers.

Promotoras are bilingual, bicultural members of the community, who will serve as liaisons between the medical community and the clients, providing information, support and referrals in a culturally sensitive manner.

While the program does not aim to provide direct services (apart from basic screenings), the hope is that it will be able to develop excellent working relationships for referral to other service providers in the area, to facilitate provision of existing services to an underserved population.

Education will include such topics as obesity and weight loss, nutrition and exercise, lowering cholesterol, and the importance of early screenings for cervical and breast cancer. The risk identification will be accomplished by a series of basic screenings, which will include blood pressure, pulse oximetry, BMI calculation and counseling, blood sugar and lipid testing.

Promotoras will provide follow up and referrals to any individuals for whom it is indicated.

Contact Karen Forest at 247-5702, Ext. 2067, for further information or to arrange a presentation for your staff or other group.

Call center and Web site for Smoke-Free Colorado questions

To help residents and business owners understand the nuances of the Colorado Clean Indoor Air Act, the statewide smoke-free law, Colorado is launching an informational call center and a Web site. The free call center at (888) 701-2006 has been available 24 hours a day, seven days a week starting June 5. The Web site, www.smokefreeColorado.org, also went live June 5.

Colorado's statewide smoke-free law, which goes into effect July 1, requires most indoor public areas including restaurants, bars and most workplaces to be smoke-free.

The call center, staffed by trained, qualified operators, is designed to handle a large number of calls in a very short period of time. The state anticipates significant interest from mid-June, two weeks before the law goes into effect, to a few weeks after the law is implemented at the beginning of July. Callers, after initially being identified as individuals or business owners, are offered the options of receiving automated, pre-recorded information on the most frequently asked questions or talking to a live operator to have their individual questions answered.

Business owners may have questions about exemptions to the law and will learn that, essentially, the only exemptions are casinos, cigar-tobacco bars, retail tobacco businesses, up to a quarter of hotel and motel rooms, limousines for-hire and Denver International Airport's smoking lounge. Callers also can ask questions about how the law impacts them, such as how far away from building entrances they must be to smoke, penalties for violating the law, enforcement and informational materials for businesses.

The Web site will provide comprehensive information for the general public; proprietors of bars, restaurants, gaming halls and other businesses; local health agencies; and community partners. Information on the new site will include: collateral and signage related to the law available to order for free to help business owners educate their customers and employees; fact sheets, press releases and FAQs; a section for businesses with information about compliance, employee education and economic impact; information about smoking cessation and Colorado's Quitline and QuitNet counseling services; TV spots airing to educate Coloradans about the new law; and text of the Colorado Clean Indoor Air Act.

All Web site content will be available in both English and Spanish; in addition, an online fact sheet will be translated into 12 languages to ensure all understand the law.

Smoke-free laws are proving to be an effective way to improve public health by reducing people's exposure to secondhand smoke, which has been shown to be harmful to both adults and children and causes about 53,000 deaths per year in the United States. Colorado is the 13th state to enact a smoke-free law, creating healthier environments for people while they're in public indoor places. People living, working and visiting in Colorado will benefit from having access to healthier indoor environments wherever they go.

In Colorado, tobacco is the leading cause of preventable death. Surveys of Colorado smokers have found that 85 percent of them want to quit. The Colorado Quitline, (800) 639-QUIT, is a free telephone coaching service that supports smokers through the quitting process and offers up to eight free weeks of the patch. Telephone coaching with the patch shows a 40-42 percent success rate, versus only 3 percent for Colorado smokers quitting on their own.

Smoke-Free Colorado is a statewide coalition of health and community organizations including the American Heart Association, American Lung Association, American Cancer Society, GASP of Colorado (Group to Alleviate Smoking Pollution), Colorado Tobacco Education and Prevention Alliance and the State Tobacco Education and Prevention Partnership. Together, Smoke-Free Colorado is working to educate the public about the state's smoke-free law that goes into effect July 1, 2006.

New machines, new centers await primary voters

By James Robinson

Staff Writer

There will be no dangling chads in Archuleta County.

Although not necessarily a mandate by Archuleta County Clerk and Recorder June Madrid, the recent arrival of new electronic voting equipment - called Direct Recording Equipment, or DREs - should eliminate dangling chads and other potential voting related problems, in addition to providing voters with myriad disabilities a way to exercise one of their fundamental rights.

According to Madrid, the county's procurement of three electronic voting machines stems from the requirements of the 2002 Help America Vote Act (HAVA). The act mandates that each polling place will have voting equipment that can accommodate the needs of all electors, regardless of their physical limitations.

Although county clerks statewide support citizens' right to vote, Madrid said many have scrutinized the new machines because of their rushed production, a high price tag, and the potential for software glitches or other electronic mishaps - each machine costs roughly $12,000 with associated software, set-up and technical support costs. But, Madrid said, those who the voting equipment is designed to serve, the physically challenged and disabled, have strongly supported the new technology. And in that regard, Madrid said the new, Hart-manufactured DREs are impressive.

According to Madrid, the machines can accommodate all voters, from quadriplegics to the deaf or blind, to those without any disabilities. But in order to serve such a wide array of people, the machines require software programing and extensive training for county election officials.

In order to prepare election officials and the public for the upcoming voting season, Madrid said she and her staff have spent days with Hart representatives learning the new machines, and last Friday, conducted a mock election with county staff.

By nearly mid-day Friday, Madrid had processed 21 voters with few difficulties.

"So far it has been positive," Madrid said.

With the success of the mock election, Madrid said the county election office, located on the ground floor of the Archuleta County Courthouse, will be open during regular business hours for the public to try the new machines before the Aug. 8 primary. In addition, Madrid will conduct an orientation seminar June 14 at the senior center in the Pagosa Springs Community Center, followed by a similar orientation session June 15 at the Arboles Senior Center.

She added that if a particular group wanted an orientation session, they can make arrangements by calling the Archuleta County Clerk and Recorder's office.

Madrid said the machines will also be available for early voting, and will undergo the most significant test during the primary. Although, as an alternative to the new electronic voting machines, Madrid said electors can still cast a paper ballot during the primary.

"You can still vote the old way, but we're going to ask that people take the time and use the machines," Madrid said.

Madrid estimated the new electronic voting equipment will require about 10 minutes for voters to cast their ballots.

While the new voting machines are undoubtedly different from their paper ballot predecessors, the process of casting one's ballot in Archuleta County will be different as well.

Following an early May decision by the Archuleta County Board of County Commissioners, voters will now cast their ballots at one of three vote centers rather than their usual, precinct polling place.

The move stems from the county's need to meet HAVA requirements coupled with a grant funding shortfall.

Under the county's former, 10-precinct arrangement, HAVA mandates that 10 DREs would have to be purchased - one for each precinct - to accommodate the needs of disabled voters.

Madrid explained that in order to fund the installation of the equipment, the county was to receive a grant for roughly $160,000. However, when grant funding arrived, Madrid said the county received only $56,000. Therefore, rather than anteing up funds the county did not have on voting equipment that, as of yet, is unproven in the field, the board of county commissioners opted to institute vote centers, thus keeping the county in line with HAVA requirements and within its budget.

How vote centers work

In the past, electors voted at a polling place based on their place of residence. With vote centers, electors will cast their ballots at the nearest, or most convenient, vote center location.

Prior to the election, Madrid said electors will receive a signature card in the mail. The card must be filled out and brought, along with a valid form of identification, to the election center on election day - the primary is on Aug 8 and the general election is Nov. 7. If an elector does not receive a signature card via mail, one can be filled out at the vote center. However, Madrid said electors should budget extra time for the procedure.

Once at the vote center, electors will present their documents to election officials, and a ballot containing all pertinent questions relating to where the elector lives, such as questions regarding special taxation districts, will be produced.

To cast their ballots, voters will have a choice between the familiar paper ballot or using one of the new voting machines.

The following are the three Pagosa Springs vote center locations:

- Archuleta County Elections Department, 449 San Juan St. - on the backside and in the basement of the Archuleta County Courthouse.

- Our Savior Lutheran Church, 56 Meadows Dr. at the intersection of west U.S. 160 and Meadows Drive.

- The Restoration Fellowship Church, 264 Village Drive, located behind City Market west.

2006 Election Calendar

Primary Election Dates

July 10 - Last day to register or change party affiliation to vote in the 2006 primary election.

July 10-Aug. 4 - Early voting during regular business hours.

Aug. 1 - Last day to apply for an absentee ballot if mailed by the county clerk's office. Unaffiliated voters may not apply for an absentee ballot.

Aug. 4 - Last day to apply for an absentee ballot if not mailed - picked up only.

Aug. 8 - Election day 7 a.m.-7 p.m.

In a primary election, each major political party nominates which candidate(s) it will send to the general election. Minor parties and unaffiliated candidates do not participate in the primary election. An eligible voter must be affiliated with either the Democratic or Republican party in order to vote in that party's primary election. Unaffiliated voters may participate by declaring a party affiliation prior to, or on Aug. 8, 2006.

General Election Dates

Oct. 10 - Last day to register to vote in the 2006 general election.

Oct. 10-Nov. 3 - Early voting during regular business hours.

Oct. 27 - Last day to apply for an absentee ballot if mailed by the county clerk's office.

Nov. 3 - Last day to apply for an absentee ballot if not mailed - picked up only.

Nov. 7 - Election Day, 7 a.m.-7 p.m.

Rotary parade applications available June 9

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 9. Parade applications should be received by the Pagosa Springs Rotary Club (P.O. Box 685) or at the Chamber office by 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.

CDOT, CSP, local agencies improve safety in highway work zones

By Mindy Lane

Special to The SUN

Now that construction season is in full swing, it is time to ramp up enforcement in highway work zones in order to improve highway safety for motorists and construction and maintenance workers alike. The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) in partnership with the Colorado State Patrol and Colorado Contractor's Association, has kicked off its annual Slow for the Cone Zone campaign to target unsafe driving practices in work zones across the state for the duration of the summer.

"Often unsafe driving practices occur because motorists are distracted by many sources including cell phones, radios, food and even children," said CDOT Chief Engineer Craig Siracusa. "When you combine the distraction with the ever-changing environment in a work zone, the results can become hazardous and even deadly."

In 2004 (the most recent statistics available), 1,886 crashes occurred in Colorado work zones resulting in 757 injuries and 14 deaths. In 2003, there were 2,406 crashes in Colorado work zones resulting in 1,036 injuries and 11 deaths.

To help improve safety on our highways, the Slow for the Cone Zone campaign includes a major enforcement component with overtime law enforcement targeting select work zones across the state. CDOT is providing a safety grant for $125,000, to the Colorado State Patrol and other local agencies to increase enforcement of unsafe driving in CDOT project work zones.

"Like with past years, we will be actively enforcing in work zones across the state and ticketing motorists who are unsafe and careless in the work zones," said CSP Chief Mark Trostel. "The difference will be that motorists can now be fined doubled for speeding violations as well as numerous other violations related to careless driving."

In 2005, state Rep. Jerry Frangas sponsored House Bill 1151 also known as the Lopez-Forster Act in honor of Eladio Lopez and Paul Forster, two CDOT maintenance employees who were killed in 2004 when a drunk driver crashed into their work zone. The new law will take effect July 1, doubling the fines within a work zone that relates to traffic violations, pedestrian violations, passing violations and other offenses such as following to closely. Currently, the law only doubles the fine for speeding in a work zone. The funds from the fine increase will be used for work zone safety signage, equipment and additional enforcement on highway work zones.

"It's my hope and belief the Lopez-Forster Act will help save lives and reduce injuries on Colorado's highways," said Representative Frangras. "When the first bill was passed in 1997, doubling fines for speeding, we saw a decrease in speeding-related accidents the following year. By 2003, the number of speed-related accidents was cut in half while the number of overall construction zone accidents increased. This new bill will hopefully create those same results for all construction zone accidents."

Safety enforcement activity will be increased through the following highway projects in this region ofthe state:

- Colo. 172, New Mexico to Ignacio, resurfacing.

- U.S. 160, Yellow Jacket to Keyah Grande, resurfacing.

- U.S. 550 north of Durango, resurfacing.

- U.S. 285, north side of Poncha Pass (mileposts 119 to 126.2), chip seal (preventative maintenance).

- Colo. 62 and U.S. 550 in Ridgway, resurfacing and minor widening.

"The main goal of this campaign is to improve safety on Colorado highways as the majority of work zone crashes are preventable," added Siracusa. "We hope that the extra enforcement and the doubled fines will grab the attention of motorists and get them to slow down and be patient. We need everyone including motorists to fulfill their role in highway safety and Slow for the Cone Zone."

Backcountry Horsemen meet tonight

The June meeting of the Four Corners Backcountry Horsemen will be held at 7 p.m. today, June 8, at the Pine River Valley 4 Square Church in Bayfield, one mile north of the roundabout on CR 501.

The program will be "The Arborglyphs of the Pine-Piedra Stock Driveway," presented by Nicole Smith of the San Juan Mountains Association.

"Stockmen used to herd sheep and cattle from the Arboles area north through Vallecito to Silverton each spring for summer pasture. Their history is carved onto the old aspen trees along the driveway," Smith said. "Some of the glyphs are really fascinating."

Sign up at the meeting for the June hands-on packing clinic scheduled for June 10.

The clean-up and fix-up rides at lower Dutch Creek and lower Elbert Creek will be finalized.

The July 13 meeting will be held at the La Plata County Fairgrounds in Durango.

Blanco POA to hold annual meeting

The Lower Blanco Property Owners will have their 24th annual meeting at noon, June 17, at the Blanco River RV Park on U.S. 84. Bring a favorite side dish and eating utensils.

For information, call Margaret Wilson at 264-4246.

Volunteers needed for home delivery meal program

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

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

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

Adopt a home delivery route today and brighten the lives of a few senior citizens.

For more information, contact Musetta at 264-2167.

High school honors list, second semester

The final honor roll of the school year has been released by Pagosa Springs High School

12th Grade

Receiving honors for 4.0 averages are: Heather Andersen, Daniel Aupperle, Christopher Baum, Sara Baum, Emily Buikema, Jake Cammack, Heather Dahm, Kari Faber, Caitlin Forrest, Jim Guyton, Kody Hanavan, Larissa Harwood, Jennifer Hilsabeck, Joshua Hoffman, Ursala Hudson, Elizabeth Kelley, Jamie Kern, Kelsey King, Matthew Nobles, Emilie Schur, Casey Schutz, Craig Schutz, Emmalynn Smith, Charmaine Talbot and Katherina Vowles.

Other seniors on the honor roll are: Katie Erickson, Orion Sandoval, Mia Caprioli, Kelly Freudenberger, Mercedes Haider, Casey Isaacson, Paul Muirhead, Paul Przybylski, Samantha Ricker, Kaitlin Simmons, Kailey Smith, Ashley Snyder, Adrian Begay, Chelsea Taylor, Brittany Feyen, Brittany Jaramillo, Jennifer Kinkead, Roxanne Lattin, Erika Lucero, Derrick Monks, Annie Thompson and Derek Davis.

11th Grade

Receiving honors for 4.0 averages are: Sabra Brown, Kimberly Canty, Hannah Clark, Iris Frye, Kimberly Fulmer, Alaina Garman, Jamilyn Harms, Casey Hart, Jennifer Haynes, Anna Hershey, Elise Hoover McDonald, Kristin Hopper, Javier Iturriaga Axpe, Shanti Johnson, Emily Martinez, Jesse Miller, Laurel Reinhardt and Jenni Webb-Shearston.

Other juniors on the honor roll are: Dustin Bauer, Kathryn Cumbie, Kristen DuCharme, Malinda Fultz, Travis Furman, Carol Hart, Kerry Joe Hilsabeck, Kimberly Judd, Jessica Lynch, Courtney Mercer, Jenny Osmialowski, Isen Perry, Daniel Redden, Kelly Sause, Teresa Silva, David Smith, Danielle Spencer, Alex Vick, Jacob Beavers, Adam Carroll, Kelly Crow, Joseph Gill, Ellen Griffiths, Vekoslav Koshkin, Jennifer Lobato, Jordyn Morelock, Tesh Parker, Reva Shepard, Adam Trujillo, Trevor Trujillo, Trina Zielinski, Westin Carey, David Dunmyre, Elvina Hamby, Samantha Harris, Mariah Howell, Jessica Johnson, Katelynn Little, Kyle Lutsic, Porfirio Palma, Fara Rediske, Grace Smith and Jessie Stewart.

10th Grade

Receiving honors for 4.0 averages are: Chance Adams, Natalia Clark, Bradley Iverson, Carrie Kern, Allison Laverty, Michael Moore, Travis Moore, Trey Quiller, Sarah Schultz and Rebecca Stephens.

Other sophomores on the honor roll are: Stephanie Erickson, Bruce Hoch, Stephan Leslie, Shantilly Mills, Karla Palma, Ashley Portnell, Isaiah Warren, Cody Bahn, Madeline Bergon, Hannah Burnett, Dan Cammack, Cameron Creel, Shannon DeBoer, Stephanie Earley, Patrick Ford, Kailee Kenyon, Joshua Laydon, Gage Lovett, Tabitha Perry, Forrest Rackham, Camille Rand, Katrina Weiher, Stephanie Zenz, Landon Bayger, Garrett Campbell, Stacy Dominguez, Misha Garcia, Del Greer, Lauren Hasselman, Whitney Jackson, Cole Kraetsch, Andrew Parker and Keith Pitcher.

Ninth Grade

Receiving honors for 4.0 averages are: Anna Ball, Alex Baum, Jordan Boudreaux, Kyle Brookens, Rory Burnett, Courtney Guilliams, Jaclyn Harms, Ashley Iverson, Rachel Jensen, Nichole Kazarinoff, Stephanie Lowe, Jessica Martinez, Julia Nell and Shelby Stretton.

Other freshmen on the honor roll are: Mikayla Rickey, Black Bahn, Gracie Clark, Joseph DuCharme, Jacob Faber, Aniceta Gallegos, Benjamin Gallegos, Zane Gholson, Allison Hart, Jacob Haynes, Lillien Hester, John Jewell, Thomas Schmidt, Brittney Siler, Amanda Sutton, Jackson Walsh, Andrew Abresch, Dylan Burkesmith, Alicia Cox, Joshua DeVoti, Eric Freudenberger, Zel Johnston, Jennifer Low, Kyle Monks, Jennifer Mueller, Raesha Ray, Casey Griffin, Kade Skoglund, Arthur Spirin, Kacey Tothe and Bailey Wessels-Halverson.



Friends of Wolf Creek plan fund-raiser

By James Robinson

Staff Writer

With a formal appeal filed by Colorado Wild in opposition to the U.S. Forest Service's decision regarding access to the proposed Village at Wolf Creek, and more legal battles expected, Friends of Wolf Creek is stepping in to help.

"We're raising funds to continue our opposition to the proposed Village at Wolf Creek," said Marilyn Hutchins of the Friends of Wolf Creek.

To that end, Hutchins said that on June 24 her group will host a garage/yard sale at the former Piedra Laundromat in Pagosa Springs, with proceeds going to help pay attorney's fees for Colorado Wild's and Friends of Wolf Creek's fight against the Forest Service decision and the development of the 10,000 person, luxury village slated for construction adjacent to the Wolf Creek Ski Area.

Hutchins said Colorado Wild attorneys have been working for wages well below the hourly scale, or for free, because they believe in the cause.

In March 2006, Forbes magazine ranked Village developer, Billy Joe "Red" McCombs among the world's richest people, and with a net worth of $1.2 billion, as 645th of the world's 793 billionaires.

Hutchins said donations of goods are needed for the sale, and items could be dropped off at the laundromat between 3 and 6 p.m., Wednesday, Thursday and Friday of each week prior to the event.

Hutchins said volunteers are needed to help pick up merchandise, to price items and to help organize items during the sale.

The former Piedra Laundromat is located at 120 Piedra Road, next to Pepper's Mexican Restaurant in Pagosa Springs.

For more information, or to volunteer, contact Hutchins at 731-9414.

Chimney Rock Full Moon Program set for Saturday

By Karen Aspin

Special to The SUN

Visitors can enjoy popular Native American flute player Charles Martinez as he accompanies the full moon program scheduled Saturday, June 10, at Chimney Rock Archaeological Area.

Martinez, a native Pagosan of Jicarilla Apache and Navajo heritage, is a master of the traditional style of Indian flute playing and has been a local crowd pleaser for many years.

While awaiting the moon's approximate 8 p.m. arrival near the Great House Pueblo site, visitors will learn about the Ancestral Puebloans, the archaeological relationship of Chimney Rock to Chaco Canyon, and archaeoastronomy theories. Glenn Raby, USFS Geologist, San Juan National Forest, Pagosa District, is the program host.

Tickets are $15, and reservations are required, as these popular programs are generally sold out in advance. Visitors should schedule two to three hours for the evening's event. Due to program length and the hike involved to the mesa top, the program is not recommended for children under 12.

The gate will be open from 6:30 to 7 p.m. for those attending the full moon program. Late arrivals cannot be accommodated. The program begins at 7:30 p.m.

As an added feature to the Full Moon Program, the Chimney Rock Interpretive Association (CRIA) offers an optional guided early tour of the lower archaeological sites at Chimney Rock for an additional fee of $5. The gate opens at 5:30 p.m. for those who have signed up for the early tour prior to the Full Moon Program.

Visitors need to come prepared for the outdoors by bringing a flashlight - a necessity when navigating down the trail after the program - warm clothing, good walking shoes, and a blanket or cushion to sit on during the program. No food or pets, please. A "light brigade" of CRIA volunteers is stationed along the trail to assist visitors as they return to their vehicles. The view back to the mesa top from below features an unforgettable view as the stream of lights snakes down the trail. In the event of bad weather, the program will be canceled and possibly rescheduled for the following evening.

For those interested in the Major Lunar Standstill (MLS), the moon will not rise between Chimney Rock and Companion Rock during this Full Moon Program event. Please review the MLS section of the Chimney Rock Web site for the 2006 schedule and details on the MLS programs. MLS tickets went on sale May 15 and are selling fast; the July, August and December programs are already sold out, with waiting lists established.

Tickets for the Summer Solstice Sunrise Program Wednesday, June 21, are also on sale now.

Chimney Rock Archeological Area is located 17 miles west of Pagosa Springs, three miles south of U.S. 160 on Colo. 151. For reservations and more information, call the CRIA office at 264-2287 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday, or check the Web site at www.chimneyrockco.org.

Chimney Rock Interpretive Association, Inc., sponsors the Full Moon Program in partnership with the USDA Forest Service, San Juan National Forest, Pagosa Ranger District.

Summer hours at Pagosa Ranger district office

The Pagosa Ranger District Field Office at 2nd and Pagosa streets is now keeping summer hours, 7:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m., Monday-Friday, and 9 a.m.-3 p.m., Saturday. The office phone number is 264-2268.

The office offers maps, books, permits, educational items and other materials for sale. Free U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management information is also available.

Information on the San Juan National Forest can be found on the Web at www.fs.fed.us/r2/sanjuan/.

Information on BLM lands, including Canyons of the Ancients National Monument and Anasazi Heritage Center, can be found on the Web at www.co.blm.gov/ahc and www.co.blm.gov/canm.

Watch the first sunrise of summer at Chimney Rock

By Karen Aspin

Special to The SUN

Summer solstice is the longest day of the year, with sunrise occurring the farthest north on the horizon for the entire year.

Watch the sun rise over the San Juans from a vantage point at Chimney Rock Archaeological Area Wednesday, June 21, the first day of summer, and discuss how the Ancient Puebloans may have survived and why they celebrated the solstice.

This unique two- to three-hour event begins at Sun Tower - a place not visited on regular tours - and concludes at Stone Basin, providing two viewing locations.

Tickets are $15 and reservations are required. Due to the hiking and the length of the program, it's suggested that children under 12 not attend.

Visitors need to come prepared for the outdoors by wearing appropriate clothing and good walking shoes. A blanket or cushion to sit on during the program will enhance the experience.

The gate will be open from 5-5:05 a.m., after which there will be no admittance. Sunrise is estimated at approximately 5:48 a.m., and the program runs about two hours in length.

Chimney Rock Archaeological Area is located 17 miles west of Pagosa Springs, three miles south of U.S. 160 on Colo. 151. For more information or to make a reservation, call the Visitors' Cabin at 883-5359 from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Web site visitors will find more information on www.chimneyrockco.org.

This event is sponsored by Chimney Rock Interpretive Association, Inc., in partnership with the USDA Forest Service, San Juan National Forest, Pagosa District.

DOW establishes Colorado Wildlife Habitat Protection Program

The Colorado Division of Wildlife, in conjunction with the Colorado Habitat Stamp Committee and Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO), has announced a request for applications for funding habitat protection in Colorado.

This new initiative will be known as the Colorado Wildlife Habitat Protection Program.

The Colorado Wildlife Habitat Protection Program provides an avenue for private landowners, land trusts or other conservation organizations to conserve critical habitat throughout the state. Open enrollment for all program applications will be from June 1, 2006, to July 31, 2006.

Up to $20 million will be made available through DOW funds, Colorado Habitat Stamp funds, GOCO and some federal grant money for the best applications received. The emphasis will be placed on the purchase of easements to ensure that all reasonable avenues are pursued prior to fee simple acquisition. However, fee title purchases are allowed.

The main priorities for the program are important habitat for sage dependent species including critical winter range and migration corridors for big game species, Gunnison and greater sage grouse habitat, Front Range riparian communities, important access for wildlife recreation opportunities, critical wetlands, shortgrass prairie species and lesser prairie chicken habitat.

Habitat loss can be a factor in the decline of wildlife species in Colorado. The Colorado Wildlife Habitat Protection Program will work to conserve remaining habitat.

"This program is a tremendous step forward for conservation in Colorado," said Bruce McCloskey, director of the DOW. "Partnering with other conservation organizations and landowners to multiply our resources will help Colorado conserve wildlife habitat. Both the residents and the wildlife of this state will benefit from this new program."

The monies raised to date by the new Colorado Habitat Stamp Program provided the catalyst to initiate this comprehensive effort to protect habitat and wildlife.

Through the combination of these funding programs, the DOW is able to bring together an array of species protection and land conservation tools and incentives not otherwise available.

For more information on how to apply, visit http://wildlife.state.co.us/LandWater/PrivateLandProgram/WildlifeHabitatProtectionProgram.

Free youth fishing clinic at Echo Lake

The Colorado Division of Wildlife will host a free youth fishing clinic June 10 at Echo Lake State Wildlife Area.

The clinic, for youth ages 15 and under, will be held 9 a.m.-noon at the Echo Lake State Wildlife Area, about three miles south of Pagosa Springs on U.S. 84.

You may register youngsters ages 15 and under at Ponderosa Do-It-Best or at the Ski and Bow Rack prior to the event. Youth must be accompanied by an adult and habitat stamps will not be required for adults accompanying youth during the clinic. All fishing gear and bait will be provided.

Door prizes will be given out which were donated by the following sponsors: Ponderosa Do-It-Best, Ski and Bow Rack, Backcountry Anglers, Let It Fly, Terry's ACE Hardware and Durango Walmart.

For more information, contact district wildlife managers Justin Krall, 264-0909, Mike Reid, 731-2369, or Doug Purcell, 731-2528.

Missionary Ridge burned area tour

The San Juan Mountains Association and San Juan Public Lands are sponsoring a free tour of the Missionary Ridge burned area at Vallecito.

There will be an emphasis on fire ecology and rehabilitation efforts.

The tour will be held 10 a.m.-noon, Saturday, June 17.

For more information or to register, call 385-1210.

Local RMEF chapter awards scholarship

By David Bohl

Special to The SUN

The San Juan Chapter of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation (RMEF) is proud to award a $2,000 scholarship to Jake Cammack, graduating senior at Pagosa Springs High School.

Jake was awarded the scholarship to attend Fort Lewis College and intends to major in a GIS mapping field. During both his sophomore and junior summers in high school, Jake worked with the University of New Mexico doing GIS studies.

Funding for the scholarship is raised through a raffle conducted each year by the San Juan Chapter. All funds raised from the raffle are awarded to local Pagosa Springs graduating seniors. The winners of this year's raffle, which were drawn at the local annual RMEF banquet June 3, were Carrie Campbell, John Thompson and Dave Vitek.

Over the last three years, the chapter has been able to award $7,000 to four high school graduates through the generosity of your participation in our scholarship raffle program.

We want to express our gratitude to all the people who purchased tickets to support the scholarship program and the banquet.

 Catch and Release

Casting with a classic - the ideal, Rocky Mountain, high country fly

By James Robinson

Staff Writer

I pushed out into the lake and slowly kicked away from the heavily forested shoreline. As the trees gradually receded, the water shifted from copper-brown to black, the lake deepened and soon the silty lake bottom disappeared.

As I kicked, I scanned the surrounding forest for activity. Nothing moved - not even birds. The lake felt eerie, its black water cold and malevolent, as though it would come alive in an instant, swallowing me and the float tube whole, and I would vanish without a trace. Despite the foreboding, I continued kicking toward the lake's center, my fins barely visible just a foot under water.

Wind rippled the surface of the lake. Stacks of cumulus clouds drifted across the sky, obscuring the sun. I pulled on a jacket to ward off the chill. Once in the center, I let the breeze push me toward the far bank, to a stretch of shoreline where scores of downed spruce lay haphazardly scattered and partially submerged like a giant's abandoned game of pick-up-sticks. As I neared the deadfall, I reached for a forgotten corner of my fly box and extracted a nearly forsaken fly. And, as I tied it to the end of a 9-foot leader, I drifted back to an afternoon in an Albuquerque fly shop.

Nearly three years ago, while in one of my old flyfishing haunts, and after expressing a desire to fish wet flies, a friend gave me two flies to add to my fly box - streamer versions of the Royal Coachman. At the time, he described them as "classic" fly patterns, and despite his recommendation that they might produce trout when all else failed, I stuffed them into a crowded corner of my wet-fly box, and never removed them again. In retrospect, I don't remember having anything against fishing the venerable fly; it was just that the Coachman didn't resemble anything I had ever seen in the water, yet I later realized that's precisely the fly's allure and its charm.

Contrary to the current "match-the-hatch" trend in fly angling, the Royal Coachman speaks of an entirely different era in flyfishing. Whereas today's anglers and fly tiers often go to great pains to present elaborate and exact duplications of the naturals, the Royal Coachman harkens back the days of Hemingway and Zane Grey, to gut leaders, leather fly wallets and bamboo rods, to days when flyfishermen cast gaudy patterns to all species of trout. And this is exactly what fishing the Royal Coachman is all about.

Like a Royal Wulff, Humpy, Stimulator or Madame X, the Royal Coachman imitates nothing in particular and works best when trout aren't picky or feeding selectively. It's an ideal, Rocky Mountain, high country fly. But unlike some of the more contemporary attractor patterns, the Royal Coachman is rich in history, and is one of the storied, and most popular patterns in American flyfishing. And of all fly patterns, the Royal Coachman probably holds the record for variations, including large salmon fly patterns down to size 18 dry flies, with styles ranging from wet, to dry, to streamers, parachute and Trudes. With the multitude of variations, it can be difficult to trace the fly's origins, yet angling historians largely agree, the Royal Coachman is an Old World fly, with a decidedly New World twist.

According to angling lore, the predecessor to today's Royal Coachman originated in Britain, yet once it arrived in the New World, the pattern was adapted to American flyfishing tastes. According to A.J. McClane, writing in his book, "The Practical Fly Fisherman," one of the first to provide the New World adaptation was John Haily, a professional fly tier living in New York, who, in 1878, tied one of the first Royal Coachman's on which today's patterns are based. According to McClane, the bodies of Haily's, and other early Coachman flies, were tipped with gold and tinsel, and the fly was tied without a tail. The lack of a tail, McClane wrote, made for a poorly floating dry fly, and the addition of such was a dramatic improvement to the pattern.

According to McClane, the second major improvement came in 1930 when Reuben Cross of Neversink, N.Y., replaced the long-popular fan wings with white hair wings in an effort to improve the Coachman's durability. In his book, McClane writes that L.Q Quackenbush of the Beaverkill Trout Club asked Cross to dress Royal Coachmans using something more durable than the typical fragile, white breast feathers commonly tied onto the fly. According to McClane, Cross decided that stiff, white hair might work as an appropriate and durable replacement for the feather wings, and Cross eventually located impala tails, whose kinky, stiff hair seemed well suited to the task. As per Quackenbush's request, Cross modified the fly with the impala hair, and with the adaptation, the Quack Coachman, later to be called the Royal Coachman, was born.

As I neared the submerged logs, none of Haily's, Cross' or Quackenbush's efforts seemed relevant. And questions of impala hair versus breast feathers seemed of little consequence. What mattered was I was alone, fishing in alpine solitude in prime brook trout country.

I began to cast.

From my position nearly 50 feet off the bank, I launched long double-hauls into the tangle of underwater conifer trunks. As the sinking line touched the water and the fly landed with a plop, I counted slowly, letting the line sink. Once the fly was down to a sufficient depth, I began a quick, jerky, wet fly retrieve. The technique proved effective, and I landed two solid 14-inch brookies.

With the breeze still blowing I drifted farther down lake. As I passed the deadfall, I traced the outlines of the massive, submerged tree trunks and followed their shapes out into the lake to a point where they disappeared into the deep black water, and there, in those imperceptible depths, I launched a cast. The fly landed with a slight splash, and I let it sink, counting to 10, then 20, and on to 25. The lake sucked the fly down, and when I was sure I would snag on the bottom, I pulled three quick strips on the line and suddenly, a piscine sledgehammer pounded the fly.

The impact caused me to curse out loud, but when I realized I wasn't snagged on a log, I braced for the fight. I felt like Hemingway's character in the "Old Man and the Sea," and together, the trout and me battled our way out across the lake.

The surging fish pulled my float tube in circles, and ran in a zigzag route up the shoreline. I let the fish run, keeping it checked on the reel, and keeping it out of the deadfall it was so desperately trying to reach. We played the game for some time, its advances checked by the reel, then it would surge again - each play resulting in less line being forfeited, and slowly I brought the trout in.

As I eased it in on its side, the full length and girth of the trout was revealed. When I laid the fish gently across my lap its beauty was staggering - an 18-inch brook trout, a rare specimen - and I turned the hook, and slipped it back into the water, and with a flash of its tail, it plunged deep and vanished.

I won't tell you where I caught the fish, but I'll tell you what I caught it on - a streamer-tied version of the venerable classic, the Royal Coachman.


Army birthday

Dear Editor:

On June 14, 2006, the unbeatable United States Army will celebrate its 231st birthday. Over the years, fine men and women have sacrificed their lives, their fortunes and their happiness to give us the freedom we enjoy today. From the time we first saw that our flag was still there, through the many necessary wars, the army stood fast and has given us a nation under God, dedicated to individual freedom.

Sometimes it's difficult to realize what our army has done for us. Our nation is now under attack from without and within in a global war. We must stand firm and support what the army does for us day in and day out. If we do, the army will defeat those who envy us, our freedom and our economic status. We at home must support our troops and our leaders.

Don't believe every headline. Instead, try to put yourself in the place of those involved when you hear derogatory things. Search for the good headlines. Just what have John Doe and your army accomplished today? You will find there have been many good things and much progress, albeit at great cost. Most good news may not be available unless you demand it. Today's army is staffed with exceptional male and female volunteers, equipped with the best equipment available and together with the supporting services, the finest ever assembled.

You should be proud of your army. I know you are, as am I. They are the finest army in the world and, if you let them, they will continue to assure your freedom and this great nation of ours. Happy birthday, army, job well done! Keep it up!

Donald H. Bartlett

Begun to learn?

Dear Editor:

A tale of two presidents, or has George W. Bush began to learn statesmanship?

On the one hand, Iraq is engulfed in anarchy.

Tom Friedman: "The hour is late and the enemy is unique. We are not losing Iraq to the Iraqi Vietcong - traditional nationalists. Iraq has a freely elected nationalist government. No, we are losing in Iraq to sectarian theocrats, Islamo-fascists and local and regional tyrants, who have only one thing in common: the belief that America and its Iraqi allies must fail, that neither modernity nor democracy must be allowed to take root in Iraq.

"It will be a global tragedy if they succeed, but it is hard to fight an enemy whose only concern is that you lose, not what happens after. It is impossible, though, without Iraqi leaders who can make a fist. We can't keep asking Americans to sacrifice their children for people who hate each other more than they love their own children."

And on the other hand, finally, after six long years of very expensive presidential education and horribly destructive decision/actions, we get:

David Brooks: "Still, the accomplishments over the past few weeks have been impressive. Bush and Rice have created a coherent policy. They have organized the Europeans, Russians and Chinese around that policy. They have put Iran on the defensive, and forced the different factions in the regime to argue about what sort of country they wish to become.

"Even the rollout was masterful. I called experts around the world yesterday afternoon, and all of them seemed to have just gotten off the phone with a senior administration official (or two), and all were positive about what had been achieved.

"It's still hard to believe the international community can really get its act together. (Have the U.S. and the Russians and the Chinese really forged an agreement on sanctions, or just fudged their differences?) But this display of competence causes me to remember that over the past several weeks this administration has done a number of things well (the nominations of Michael Hayden and Henry Paulson, to name just two). Maybe there's life in this presidency yet."

I would have said the latter was all Condi, but George asked her for a third Iranian option!

Dave Blake


Dear Editor:

There seems to be some confusion about the value of County Commissioner participation in state and national meetings. I offer the following article to clarify their importance. Thank you for allowing me to comment.

County involvement on the state and national level.

We in the political, bureaucratic world live in a society of initials - BOCC, CCI, NACo, WIR, RFTA, COG, CDOT, BLM, USFS, the Colorado Statehouse and the U.S. Congress. The names of agencies with whom we work.

The clarity of the connections among these agencies is often lost because we are trying to figure out the way through the maze instead of enjoying the connections and the particular value of each agency.

There are 65 county boards in Colorado. Counties are tied together, certainly not by watershed boundaries, but by issues that affect all of us. Transit needs, open space, wildlife migration and habitat; water protection and demand, access to and use of public lands are all among the issues without respect for county boundaries. Health and Human services, preservation of open space, wildfire mitigation plans, energy development and impacts, and protection of agriculture as an industry and a lifestyle are other issues on a long list. One's interest in any of these issues invites commissioners to join with others in CCI, Colorado Counties, Inc., to learn about and discuss the specifics and to seek solutions to common problems. Through CCI, Commissioners can not only work with other Colorado Commissioners, but they can work with NACo, the National Association of Counties, the organization that represents all counties in the nation, to further discuss and debate the issues.

Through the connections of NACo, representatives from throughout the West work to determine policy on a national level that will allow us to move forward. Balance is required if we are to move through the maze of different opinions, attitudes, backgrounds, community demands, conflicting information, and personalities!

There are varied topics of discussion at each gathering of the committees. Fortunately, we move from discussion to resolutions, to policies, and to direction to other elected officials or agency directors who make final recommendations. And, sometimes, as with the maze, we hit the wall and must backtrack until we find another way. The journey is fascinating and important. The issues will not go away. Only by remaining informed, by staying in the discussion, by having strong convictions, by trying to find a balance - only then can Commissioners feel and believe that they might make a difference.

I urge and support and thank you for your participation and involvement in these local, state, and national leadership organizations. (The southwest corner of our state is well represented. Robin Schiro of Archuleta County, Sheryl Ayers and Wally White of La Plata County are all active and informed participants in these organizations.)

Dorothea Farris

Pitkin County commissioner

Editor's note: Thank you, but we are not at all confused about the role of our county commissioners - here or elsewhere. Please see editorial.

Global warming

Dear Editor:

Is global warming real? Yes.

Can we humans stop its progress? No.

Should we stop belching so many pollutants into the atmosphere? Absolutely. Pollution adds to the problem, though it is not the cause.

Will we get solid and useful information about global warming from politicians? Not likely, and the same goes for the news media.

We have been dealing with global warming like ancient humans dealt with solar eclipses or other natural phenomena. We are uninformed about the cause, blame someone's behavior for making it happen and sacrifice a goat to make the sun shine again. It is as if we are watching a hurricane grow in strength as it makes its way across the Atlantic and are looking for someone to blame rather than preparing for the natural disaster that is well on its way.

Global warming has occurred in the past and is happening again. Is this period of warming the precursor to another ice age as some believe? Global cooling is also a real historical event. What made the world overheat and then over-cool in the past - before industry was a factor?

We don't have those answers yet, but scientists are gaining more information about events that seem to be related to temperature change. The North Atlantic Deep Current is one such factor. Sometimes it has been strong enough to carry large amounts of sediment along the sea floor and at other times it seems to have almost stopped moving. There are indications that there is a good correlation between the strength of that current and global temperatures. If that is so, we will have to ask what makes the current alter its strength. Is it gaining or losing strength now? How does today's current compare to that of the last ice age?

Then there are the deep-water, geothermal vents. These vents pour out super-heated gasses containing hydrogen sulphide and other harmful (to humans) material. Are they increasing in size and quantity, causing the oceans to warm and the ice sheets to melt? We don't know yet. Research is difficult because of the toxic gasses and the depth of many of the vents.

So to be different than our ancient ancestors, let's change the course of the discussion about global warming and start talking about what we can do to prepare. Along with temperature change, rainfall patterns will be different as will where crops can be grown. Coastal areas will be flooded around the world, how high we don't really know. We can't stop the flooding but we don't have to just sit on the beach while the water rises over our heads and we get more angry at "those others" who have caused it.

Bob Fisher

Spirited defense

Dear Editor:

County involvement in NACo and CCI.

CCI, Colorado Counties, Inc. is an organization designed to give counties a collective voice at the state level. NACo, the National Association of Counties, has a similar mission in that it gives counties a voice at the national level.

This interaction is essential if we, as County Commissioners, are to learn about and make informed decisions, influence current and future legislation that will have direct impacts on our counties, our communities, and the individual citizens we serve. These issues include; transportation, roads, transit, airport access, land use policies, recycling, landfill management, drug enforcement, public safety, public health, methamphetamine issues, growth issues, work force housing, economic issues, unfunded mandates from state and federal legislation, increased demand for social programs, clean air and clean water issues, adequate water supply, federal land access and management plans and financial compensation for the federal lands within our counties, oil and gas development, recreational use and impacts on public lands, and preservation of agriculture and our cultures in a changing economy, to name a few. These are issues that are common problems that most counties face throughout the state and the country.

CCI and NACo provide the infrastructure to share ideas and policies and listen to proven solutions that counties have used to overcome similar obstacles and learn from others. Active participation in these organizations not only brings enthusiasm and passion to the job of County Commissioner; it also provides communities with better, more informed leadership.

County Commissioners have diverse and fascinating backgrounds. Each brings to the discussion a thoughtful and provocative point of view. The result is decision making based on information, discussion, debate, and knowledge.

Both CCI and NACo provide meetings, workshops, and conferences designed to stimulate discussion and urge action and cooperation on issues common to counties throughout the country. These counties - urban, suburban, or rural; geographically and culturally diverse - are tied together by the commitment to do the best we can, with the best information available, and with help from all those dedicated to the goal of providing the best service possible to the communities we serve.

Your participation, as a county and as individuals, in CCI and in NACo is appreciated. Only by working together can we protect the special qualities of our counties and of Colorado.

Jim Ignatius

Teller County commissioner

Editor's note: Please see editorial.

"The People's Commissioner"

Dear Editor:

As you may remember, I campaigned for transparency of government, which precipitated me placing a Rolling Calendar on our Archuleta County home page. I am the only Commissioner who actually personally types her own information into that merged calendar, thereby saving staff time and money. I firmly believe that nothing while I am in office is mine! Everything is WE THE PEOPLE! Therefore, the information I submit to the Rolling Calendar is for ALL THE PEOPLE. That is why some of my constituents have nicknamed me "The People's Commissioner." I listen to the people who elected me before I make any decision. After all you are my bosses.

It is not humanly possibly for me to attend all of the meetings that somehow pertain to an issue or function of interest to this county. In fact many meetings occur simultaneously in different towns. County staff member(s) or a constituent may want to attend these meetings and could relay information back to the appropriate people in our community that can help make a difference on those issues. Each of us has different experiences, expertise, and interests, and the county needs to help you help us if you would like to. That way we are not only hearing issues from a select few but having the people themselves be a part of the solution (e.g.: Citizens Task Force who reviewed the community plan, etc.).

Sometimes special or emergency meetings, not regularly scheduled Board of County Commissioner (BOCC) meetings, such as the joint Planning Commission and BOCC meeting on the proposed Land Use Code that took place on May 8, 2006, are scheduled by my fellow commissioners. These meetings are only for important matters that may arise that urgently require attention. As the BOCC appointed county representative to the Colorado Counties Public Lands, and Land Use and Natural Resources, Steering Committees, I had a county officials meeting to attend at that same time. As always, I personally pay for all of my out-of-state county business trips, including this conference fee, which was at a decreased rate since Archuleta County has been an active member of NACO for more than 6 years now. My fellow commissioners told me it is a two to one vote and the emergency is Commissioner Lynch would be leaving office before the regularly scheduled meeting in June, so we need to accelerate the process. Since I was the only BOCC commissioner who submitted written comments on the proposed Land Use Code, and there was time to listen to the recording of that meeting before voting on such, I felt the best an outvoted commissioner could do was to submit a letter to the editor encouraging the public to comment since it would be their final opportunity to do so.

As always, if any citizen has any questions or input regarding anything I have done, or as to what position I truly have on an issue, I would welcome them to contact me at 264-8304.

Thank you,

Robin Schiro

Editor's note: Please see editorial.

  Community News

Make plans now to join Relay for Life

By Kathi DeClark

Special to The PREVIEW

The Relay For Life is June 16-17 at Town Park.

The Relay means hope. It is held to raise money to fight the battle against cancer, so that one day no one has to hear the words "you have cancer."

We gather at 6 p.m. to begin our walk. There are 24 teams of 12 people prepared to walk each hour of the night. There is a designated walking track around the park and soccer field.

Why do we do this? "Because cancer never sleeps," said Dick Babillis, this year's chairman. He went on to say, "There is no finish line until we find a cure."

The event begins with the bag pipes playing for the Survivors Walk. Local survivors begin the evening with their walk through the luminaria field. The luminaria represent the celebration of life. We honor those who have died of cancer who were an important part of our lives, those who survived and those who are newly diagnosed. The lights represent the life of those we love; they burn for others to see. Cancer shows no preference; it takes young and old, fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters and friends. Luminarias are sold for $10 and can be purchased from Dory at 731-9458.

After the survivors walk, the evening continues. The Blue Moon Ramblers of Durango will provide music from 5:30 to 10. At 8, the men will be judged in the sexy legs contest. You won't want to miss this one.

At 9, the wet T-shirt freeze takes place, followed by the limbo contest. Of course, the evening isn't complete without the judging for the best campsite. The night is full of fun activities: the spaghetti hair event, scavenger hunt, poker laps, relay bingo and word jumble.

The soccer field across from the park will provide a quiet area for the campsites and tents for those who choose to sleep when not walking or playing. Abundant amounts of food will provided all night. Eddie B Cookin will have his famous food wagon available for hot tasty treats. The community has once again stepped up to donate to support and feed the cause.

The next morning, the boot camp workout is at 6 a.m., and the Rotary breakfast is at 7. The final lap and awards will be at 8 a.m.

It is not only a night for fun, but one for saving lives, remembering those we lost, for making new friends, forging bonds and raising money for the cause. It is a night for fun and games, food and laughter and song - a night for tears and memories, walking through our sorrow, holding on to faith and to the hope that we will find a cure tomorrow. It is a night for love and promise, for teaching others to fight. We may not end the war June 16-17, but we will be winning the battle that night.

Won't you come out and join the cause? You can contact me at 731-9920 to learn more, to join a team, create a team or to donate toward the eradication of cancer. Being there to support the battle against cancer is a gift you will never forget. If you can't join us for this special night, you can send your donation to Relay For Life c/o Kathi DeClark P.O. 3451 Pagosa Springs, 81147. The life you help save may be your own.

Women's Club to hold Relay fund-raiser

By Tari Woods

Special to The PREVIEW

This is the first year the Pagosa Women's Club will participate in the Relay for Life, a fund-raiser to fight cancer.

The Relay starts in Town Park at 6 p.m. Friday, June 16, and continues through the night, ending at 8 a.m. Saturday.

Leading up to the event on Saturday and Sunday, June 10 and 11, Old Town Gifts, located at the River Center, will assist the club in a fund-raising event from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. There will be luminarias for sale in honor and memory of, or in gratitude to friends and loved ones who have been touched by cancer.

For every $10 donation, Old Town and Christmas in Pagosa will match the donation in the form of a discounted percentage of up to 50-percent off purchases in the store. Each $10 donation is equal to 10-percent off. Donations of $100 and more will receive a free gift basket, compliments of The Pagosa Woman's Club and Old Town Gifts.

Volunteers are needed to help sell the luminarias and organizers are looking for anyone who has items to donate for gift baskets.

If you would like to help, call Tari Woods at 731-8877.

Don't miss Indiefest - this weekend on the Hill

By Crista Munro

Special to The PREVIEW

The tents are up on Reservoir Hill and the weather is fine in Pagosa Springs as festival organizers anxiously await the first ever Indiefest.

Born from the rising popularity of independent music, fueled in no small part by the Internet, Indiefest will deliver 10 incredible live performances covering a wide variety of musical genres.

Campers will start arriving in town Friday, June 9, when the campgrounds open at noon. Performances kick off at noon Saturday, June 10, wrapping up Sunday evening around 9. Children's activities will take place throughout the weekend.

There are still plenty of tickets and on-site camping available for this year's inaugural event. Tickets can be purchased in Pagosa Springs at Moonlight Books or WolfTracks Books and Coffee through the end of the day today, or after that by phone at (970) 731-5582. If purchased in advance, single-day passes are $30; two-day tickets are $50. At the gate, prices go to $35 and $60. Children 12 and under are admitted free with accompanying adult.

Saturday, June 10

- Noon - Eliza Gilkyson

- 1:15 - Terri Hendrix

- 2:45 - The Clumsy Lovers

- 4:30 - Brave Combo

- 6:30 - Eileen Ivers

Sunday, June 11

- 1 p.m - Gandalf Murphy & the Slambovian Circus of Dreams

- 2:15 - Selasee

- 3:45 - Blame Sally

- 5:30 - Public Property

- 7:30 - Ruthie Foster

For tickets or additional information, visit www.folkwest.com or call 731-5582.

Chester the Jester at Music, Mirth and Muses

By Paul Roberts

Special to The PREVIEW

Elation Center for the Arts presents Music, Mirth and Muses, 7 p.m. Saturday, June 17, at the Pagosa Lakes Clubhouse.

Music, Mirth and Muses pays homage to the inspiration of the muses as it has been expressed in artistic styles of various eras. The show is a collaboration of local performers who find common ground in the inspiration of creative expression.

Weaving together the show's musical performances, dances, poems, comedy and skits is Sire John the Bard, played by local legend John Graves. Other performers include virtuoso trumpet player/vocalist/humorist Larry Elginer (as Chester the Jester), singer/dancer/actress Sally Yates, harpist Natalie Tyson, flautist Joy Redmon, saxophonist Bob Nordmann, vocalists Mathew and Tiffany Brunson and June Marquez, violinist Chris Baum, pianist Sue Anderson, radio show performer Jarrell Tyson, barn dance songsters Carla and Paul Roberts and dancers Deb Aspen and Charles Jackson.

Larry Elginer, one of the shining lights behind Pagosa's creative explosion, will parade his frivolity and playfulness as well as his stunning musicianship, in the guise of Chester the Jester.

Elginer's contribution to the local cultural arts scene has been profound. Besides having an extensive background as a professional performer and conductor, he is best known for creating one of the nation's top school music programs.

"The school system in Simi Valley was very lucky, but now we have the luck," says John Graves. "I'm sure he could have achieved anything in music that he wanted. It's a wonderful thing for our youth and our culture that he decided to do it in schools. I think he's a rare jewel."

There's a renaissance of creativity in Pagosa Springs, in which Elginer is playing a big role. Come enjoy him in Mirth and Muses.

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.

Pagosa Lakes Clubhouse is located at 230 Port Ave. Take U.S. 160 to Vista Boulevard, take Vista to Port Avenue.

Music, Mirth and Muses is produced by Elation Center for the Arts, a 501(c)3 nonprofit arts organization serving Pagosa Springs through community concerts and educational programs. See elationarts.org on the Web, or call 731-3117 for more information.

Fire up for the Fourth with the High Rollers

By Siri Schuchardt

Special to The PREVIEW

The High Rollers are coming to Pagosa. The Community Center will open up its doors Friday, June 23, for an evening of good-old country western music to get us geared up for the Fourth of July.

Our "Old Glory" evening will begin with a dinner catered by Eddie B Cookin' served from 6 to 7:30 p.m. The dinner will consist of a pulled pork or grilled chicken sandwich along with potato salad, cole slaw, barbecue beans, apple cobbler and iced tea.

The live music, provided by the High Rollers, will start at 7 and run until 11.

There will be a cash bar with assorted beer and wine at a nominal charge. Light snacks, water and coffee will be available at no charge during the dance.

Tickets for the June 23 event are available at the community center and WolfTracks. Dinner and dance combination tickets are $20 per person and must be purchased by Tuesday, June 20, in order to give the caterer adequate lead time. Individual dance-only tickets are $12 in advance and $15 at the door. Table reservations are available for parties of at least eight people.

The High Rollers are adept at all kinds of dance music including country, western, rock, Spanish, and oldies. They are a four-piece band, and they travel with a sound man to ensure the top-notch quality of their music. The band is composed of Jeff Johnson on the fiddle, acoustic guitar, banjo, lead and background vocals; Garrett Valencia on the lead guitar, lead and background vocals; Andy Janowsky on the bass guitar, lead and background vocals; and Mike Canterbury rounding it out on the drums, lead and background vocals.

The band plays primarily in Durango and the surrounding area. Some of their regular yearly dances include the Street Dance for the Fiesta Days Rodeo, the La Plata County Fair Dance, the La Plata County Cattleman's Ball and a "whole bunch of others." This summer, they will play for the City of Durango's 125th anniversary celebration and for the City of Durango's Fourth of July street dance and fireworks display. They have been playing in this area for nearly 10 years.

Many locals here in Pagosa know Andy Janowski because of his family ties to our town and due to his incredible songwriting abilities. He has four self-produced CDs, which his family members have been dutifully promoting in our area.

If you have questions or need further information, contact me at 731-9670 or Mercy at the community center at 264-4152.. We begin setting up for the event at 9 a.m. the day of the dance and decorating will begin at 10. To help with room set-up of tables, chairs and dance floor, contact Dick Carrai at 731-3083. To help with decorations, call Pam Stokes at 731-1284 or Janet Nordmann at 264-2465. The community center is located at 451 Hot Springs Boulevard.

Make Quilt Fest part of your Fourth of July plans

By Shari Pierce

Special to The PREVIEW

Quilt Fest 2006 is just around the corner.

Pagosa Piecemakers Quilt Guild members are working hard to put the finishing touches on their biennial show. You're invited to see all the wonderful displays and quilts at this year's show.

It has become tradition for guild members to be issued a challenge to create a quilt for the upcoming show. This year two challenges were issued. The themes of the challenges are "Over the Mountain and Through the Woods to Grandmother's House We Go" and "Anything Goes." Quilters must create a quilt to fit the theme of the challenge. Visitors to the show will have the opportunity to cast their vote for the quilt that is their favorite in each of these challenges.

And, you'll want to be sure to visit our education booth. While this area is geared toward children, we are sure that adults will also enjoy what guild members have put together.

Be sure to stop by the vendor's booths to see the latest in quilt patterns, fabrics and notions. Guild members have also created tote bags and needle cases to sell.

For the first time, guild members are raffling a quilt. The guild board of directors worked together to create a quilt from the "Hidden Wells" pattern. This quilt will be on display at the show and tickets will be available.

A silent auction will be offered on a beautiful quilt. A quilt top was donated to the guild by Susan Allen. It was found among her mother's things. The fabrics in the top are dated from the 1940s to early 1950s. The top was quilted by Linda Wells with Great Adventure Quilting and bound by Helen Bartlett. This beautiful vintage quilt will be auctioned off to raise funds for guild projects.

In addition to all the special areas of Quilt Fest, there will be plenty of quilts for quilt lovers to view. Well over 100 quilts will be on display for the weekend.

Some of the quilters have chosen to sell their quilts at the show this year. These quilts will be clearly marked with prices and instructions for purchase. This is your opportunity to own a beautiful piece of art.

Quilt Fest 2006 will be held July 1- 4 in the Mamie Lynch Gymnasium at the corner of Lewis and Fourth streets. On July 1, the show will be open from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. Hours July 2 and 3 are noon to 6 p.m. and on July 4 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Entrance to the show will be via the doors on Fourth Street. Admission to the show is $2 for adults and $1 for youth ages 10-18. Children 9 and under will be admitted at no charge. A multiple entry pass will be available for an additional $1. Please include a visit to Quilt Fest in your Fourth of July holiday plans.

PSAC meeting and auction a 'roaring success'

By Kayla Douglass

Special to The PREVIEW

This year, the Pagosa Springs Arts Council combined its annual meeting with an art auction. The event was held Saturday afternoon and evening at the community center.

Annual meeting business included the confirmation of two new board members, Roberto Garcia and Kim Moore. They are filling the openings left by retiring members Doris Green and Frances Wolfe. Doris has been the president for the past four years and Frances has served as both a board member at large and as secretary. Many thanks to Doris and Frances for all the time, energy and effort they have brought to the Arts Council.

Doris and Frances will be greatly missed, but they assure us they will continue to support the arts in Pagosa and will be on hand to help with many of the events the Arts Council sponsors.

The auction itself was a roaring success, with wonderful, tasty treats served by Wildflower Catering. Those in attendance bid on original paintings, and one-of-a-kind bronzes. Items in the silent auction consisted of local business gift and service certificates, limited prints, and other gift and house ware items. Thank you to all who made donations, those who supported the auction, and to all the volunteers for making it a successful event for the Arts Council.

PSAC plans annual home and garden tour

By Marti Capling

Special to The PREVIEW

Following a successful silent auction and annual meeting, the Pagosa Springs Art Council is gearing up for the sixth annual home and garden tour, scheduled noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, July 9.

This year's event will take participants down U.S. 84 for a scenic tour of some lovely homes and ranches, and a bed and breakfast.

Each of the five properties has incredible views, with most located on large-acreage parcels. As always, homes are selected in a variety of sizes and styles, with furnishings that reflect the special interests of the owners.

Tickets are $10 for PSAC members and $12 for nonmembers, and will be available soon at the PSAC gallery in Town Park, the Chamber of Commerce, Moonlight Books, Lantern Dancer, and WolfTracks.

Brown Bag Writers meet Thursdays at Shy Rabbit

Writer's write. They sit down in front of a computer, a typewriter, or with pen and paper, and put down their observations, their thoughts, the stories filling their heads.

Practice can be fun, especially when done in a group with other writers.

Every Thursday between 11:30 a.m. and 1 p.m., the "Brown Bag Writers' meet at Shy Rabbit to listen to the muse, tap into the creative river, and learn to not take themselves so seriously.

Facilitated by freelance writer, Leanne Goebel, the group is informal and fun. Goebel provides writing prompts in the form of phrases, music or visual stimuli and writers are free to spend 20-30 minutes writing. Then writers share their work (don't worry, if you don't feel comfortable, you can pass.)

This is a gathering for writers of all levels and abilities. It is an opportunity to practice writing. To prime the pump. Bring your writing tools (pens, paper, notebooks, laptop) and a sack lunch if you would like. The cost if $5 per session and drop-ins are welcome.

Shy Rabbit is located at 333 Bastille Drive, Units B-1, B-4, west of downtown, and just south of the Pagosa Lakes area. Take U.S. 160 to North Pagosa Boulevard, stay on North Pagosa to Bastille Drive (at UBC), turn left and stay on Bastille past Hopi. Shy Rabbit is located directly next to Pine Valley Rental.

For more information log on to http://shyrabbit.blogspot.com or call (970) 731-2766.

'Select Works' opens July 1 at Shy Rabbit

"Select Works" by artists Susan Andersen (Marsan), mixed media; D. Michael Coffee, ceramics and monoprints; Sarah Comerford, painting; Ron Fundingsland, intaglio printmaking; Deborah Gorton, mixed media; Shaun Martin, painting; Al Olson, photography; Lisa Pedolsky, ceramics; and Kate Petley, resin on acrylic panels, opens July 1 at Shy Rabbit.

A reception for the artists will be held 5-8 p.m. Regular gallery hours beginning July 1 are 1-4 p.m. Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, with extended hours on the second Thursday of the month from 1-6:30 p.m.

Shy Rabbit - Contemporary Art Space and Gallery - is gaining widespread recognition for its cutting edge exhibitions and professional workshops. Look for more information on the new educational slide, film and lecture series called "Let's Explore." Shy Rabbit appeals to discerning art-lovers, and area visitors alike, with its contemporary appearance and welcoming atmosphere.

"Select Works" will be on display through Aug. 12. Shy Rabbit is located at 333 Bastille Drive, Units B-1, B-4, west of downtown, and just south of the Pagosa Lakes area. Take U.S. 160 to North Pagosa Blvd., stay on North Pagosa to Bastille Drive (at UBC) turn left and stay on Bastille past Hopi. Shy Rabbit is located directly next to Pine Valley Rental.

For more information: log onto http://shyrabbit.blogspot.com or call (970) 731-2766.

Mystery on Park Street writers' workshop

The Cortez Public Library will host a writers' workshop as a benefit for the library, 1-4 p.m. Saturday, July 15.

Three nationally-acclaimed mystery authors will lead the workshop: Virginia Swift, author of the Mustang Sally mystery series; Kathy Brandt, author of the Hannah Sampson underwater detective series; and Blake Crouch, author of two thrillers.

Topics to be covered include how characters and setting happen, the art of revision, and what you need to know about getting published.

Workshop pre-registration fee is $35. Participants will also receive a discount on the evening author reception.

Call Joanie Howland at the Cortez Public Library for more information or to register, (970) 565-8117.

Kids' program begins at Methodist Church

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.

Former atheist presents free seminar series

By Dorman Diller

Special to The PREVIEW

Does God exist?

It is an emotional question with no easy answer, and a former atheist will be in Pagosa Springs this weekend to take a logical and analytical approach to answering the question.

John Clayton, a committed Christian, travels the world teaching his free seminar. He attended Indiana University and Notre Dame University and holds degrees in math, geology, chemistry and earth science.

A nationally-known speaker, Clayton asks people to consider scientific proof for the existence of God. Using humor, power point and visual aids, his message is delivered in a fast paced, intellectual, interesting manner.

At 7 p.m. Friday he will present two sessions covering "Cosmology, A Proof of God's Existence" and "The Source - Design or Chance?" At 7 p.m. Saturday two sessions will cover the topics of "The Nature of God" and "Which God Should We Serve?" Each of these nightly sessions will be followed by an open question-and-answer period in which Clayton will field questions from the audience.

A session for grade-school children and their parents will be presented 10 a.m.-noon Saturday at the community center. In it, Clayton will look at evidence of design in the world. A session for teenagers and their parents from 3-5 p.m. will consider the topics of "UFO's, Ancient Astronauts, the Lock Ness Monster, the Bermuda Triangle, and God" and "Morality's Proof of God."

Everyone in the community is invited to attend any or all of the sessions in the free lecture series. No collections will be taken. No registration lists will be signed and no one will contact you following the seminar. Your personal privacy is assured.

'Letting go' at Unitarian Universalist Fellowship service

On Sunday, June 11, April Merrilee will lead a group meditation for the Pagosah Unitarian Universalist Fellowship emphasizing "Letting Go." She explains, "Living in a world that so often feels like a fist, merciful relief may be no more than waking with your hands open."

This service will explore through chanting, silence, and contemplation the ways in which we cling to things both wanted and unwanted. She asks, "How does this grasping affect the quality of our lives? What does it really mean when we advise each other, 'just let it go' and what is keeping us from doing that effectively?"

The service begins 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.

Summer activities at Congregation Har Shalom

Congregation Har Shalom in Durango has released a summer schedule of congregational activities.

Saturday, June 6 - Bar Mitzvah and Kiddush, 10 a.m. Join Jean and Michael Gruber for Shabbat morning services as their son Travis is called to the Torah to become Bar Mitzvah. To R.S.V.P., e-mail Michael gruber at gruber@bresnan.net.

Wednesday, June 1 - Har Shalom Annual Meeting at Har Shalom, 6 p.m.

Friday, June 16 - Torah Study at Har Shalom, 7 p.m. Call Harold Shure at 485-6793 for details.

Wednesday, June 21 - Jewish Meditation Group at Har Shalom, 7 p.m. Call Judith at 247-3292 or judithv@frontier.net.

Saturday, June 24 - Bar Mitzvah and Kiddush, 10 a.m. Join Judy and Rick Williams for Shabbat morning services as their son Aaron is called to the Torah to become Bar Mitzvah. To R.S.V.P., call Judith at 247-3855.

Wednesday, July 5 - Jewish Meditation Group at Har Shalom, 7 p.m. Call Judith at 247-3292 or judithv@frontier.net.

Friday, July 7 - Shabbat Service, 7 p.m. Led by members of Congregation Har Shalom.

Friday, July 14 - Torah Study at Har Shalom, 7 p.m. Call Harold shure at 385-6793 for details.

Wednesday, July 19 - Jewish Meditation Group at Har Shalom, 7 p.m. Call Judith at 247-3292 or judithv@frontier.net.

Friday-Sunday, July 21-23 - Weekend Shabbaton with Rabbi Baskin. Please watch your mailbox for details to follow.

Wednesday, August 2 - Jewish Meditation Group at Har Shalom, 7 p.m. Call Judith at 247-3292 or judithv@frontier.net.

Friday, August 4 - Shabbat Service, 7 p.m. Led by members of Congregation Har Shalom.

Friday, August 11 - Torah Study at Har Shalom, 7 p.m. Call Harold Shure at 385-6793 for details.

Wednesday, August 16 - Jewish Meditation Group at Har Shalom, 7 p.m. Call Judith at 247-3292 or judithv@frontier.net.

Friday-Sunday, August 18-20 - Weekend Shabbaton with Rabbi Baskin. Please watch your mailbox for details to follow.

Wednesday, August 30 - Jewish Meditation Group at Har Shalom. Call Judith at 247-3292 or judithv@frontier.net.

Call the information line, 375-0613, for last-minute changes or additional activities and programs.

Fun and learning at Pretenders Summer Drama Camp

By Brett Garman

Special to The PREVIEW

Last week, 20 local youngsters enjoyed learning and practicing the art of acting at the Pagosa Pretender's Summer Drama Camp.

There were participants ranging from grades four through high school. Students with a strong interest in theater, and children who just wanted to see what acting would be like learned a wide range of valuable acting techniques. Each student participated in three educational and fun classes.

First, was training in improvisation taught by Jon Bernard. Using games and creative imagination, Bernard helped the students relate to characters, build relationships with each other, and practice quick thinking behind the scenes.

Darcy Downing taught learners to speak clearly and to work with their voices, both musically and theatrically. She led students through breathing techniques and articulation and projection exercises.

A class to further the young actors' knowledge of monologues and scene study was taught by Felicia Meyer. Students learned character connections as they practiced their scenes and monologues. This class also gave them an opportunity to watch their peers and offer constructive suggestions and advice.

Camper Satara Artloud said, "My favorite part of camp was the games we played (in improv class) and learning to talk from our diaphragms (in voice class) was like science."

Josh Smith and Zac Brown exclaimed, "The snacks were awesome!"

Complete with high energy levels and a learning atmosphere, the camp is the first of its kind in Pagosa Springs and organizers and participants look forward to an exceptional future.

This year's participants were Caitlynn Lewis, Josh Smith, Rose Graveson, Cheyan Rice, Zachary Brown, Conner Burkesmith, Emma Donharl, Cassie Lewis, Jordyn Shulda, Satara Artloud, Ashlyn Burch, Sarah Weigman, Kelsie McNutt, Trace Gross, Dakota Jarvie, Julia Nell, Brisa Burch, Juniper Willett, Shanti Johnson, and Anna Hershey.

The Summer Drama Camp is one of the new programs started this year by Pagosa Pretenders Family Theatre. The group also presents a reader's theater, called "Pretending Books and Stories," the second Saturday of each month at the Ruby Sisson Library. This week, young Pretenders from camp will present a few things they learned this year. They will act out several of "Aesop's Fables" as well as animal stories. It will be a great time for both children and adults, so join the Pretenders at the Sisson Library at 11 a.m. Saturday, June 10.

Performance Saturday, summer reading program begins

By Barb Draper

Special to The PREVIEW

Everyone is encouraged to be at the library at 11 a.m. Saturday, June 10, for the monthly presentation by the Pagosa Pretenders.

Performers this month are students who participated in the recent Pagosa Pretenders Family Theatre Summer Drama Camp. These kids have been working on many different projects, and while they would not tell me exactly what the presentation will be, I suspect it might have something to do with folklore. Join us Saturday to find out, and to support this hard-working group.

For all kids from preschool age through those who completed grade six this year, the registration continues for "Paws, Claws, Scales and Tales," our Summer Reading Program. Come in any time, sign up and receive your book bag, schedule of events and reading log. The activities and stories will take place Tuesday and Friday mornings, June 27 through Aug. 4. The first session, June 27, will feature a speaker from the Humane Society. Dr. Yost, a local veterinarian, will speak Friday, June 30.

It is that time of year when I start asking for donations of items you might have lying around your house, gathering dust. Items needed for this year's craft activities include clean and empty plastic bottles (about 20-ounce size) with lids, pint canning jars (helpful if they have rings), white cotton gardening gloves (the kind that come in multi-packs), pieces of fake fur, and plastic jars with lids such as the ones popcorn comes in.

If you would like to find a good home for these items, drop them off at the library at any time.

Grants available through Colorado Masterpieces

In April, the Colorado Council on the Arts announced Colorado Masterpieces, a new grant opportunity based on the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) American Masterpieces: Three Centuries of Artistic Genius.

Colorado Masterpieces builds on the American Masterpieces goal of introducing all Americans to the best of their cultural and artistic legacy, but with a Colorado focus.

In order to allow sufficient time for applicants to prepare their proposals, the original deadline of May 26 has been extended, and applications are now due June 23, 2006.

The Request For Proposal and application forms are available on the council's Web site at www.coloarts.org.

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.

Youth fishing clinic offered

Pagosa Springs-area kids are invited to a free fishing clinic, 9 a.m.-noon June 10 at Echo Canyon Reservoir State Wildlife Area. The event is sponsored by the Colorado Division of Wildlife.

The event is open to kids ages 15 and under. All fishing gear and bait will be provided to those who don't have equipment.

Kids are asked to register before the event at the Ponderosa Do-It-Best store or at the Ski and Bow Rack.

Adults accompanying kids will not be required to have a habitat stamp on that day.

Other sponsors of the event include Backcountry Anglers, Terry's Ace Hardware, Let It Fly and Durango Walmart.


Chuck Bob at the Movies

New 'Producers' ain't the old 'Producers'

By Charles Streetman

I had to have been about 19 or 20 when I first saw Mel Brooks' 1968 comedy classic, "The Producers," on the Turner Classic Movies channel. I have to say, it was one of the funniest movies I had ever seen.

In 2001, Brooks took his debut film and turned it into a Broadway musical, which went on to win several Tony Awards and, with that kind of success, "The Producers" seemed destined for the big screen. Then, 2005 came, and as I had anticipated, Brooks released a film version of the Broadway hit. Because it had been nearly four years since I had seen the original film, I could hardly recall more than the basic plot and a few of the funniest scenes - head trauma is hell on the memory - so I picked up the DVD version off the "new releases" shelf, and headed home for a view.

The musical's original lead actors Nathan Lane ("The Birdcage") and Matthew Broderick ("Election") reprise their roles in the film version as Max Bialystock (Lane) and Leo Bloom (Broderick).

In the story, Max was once the king of Broadway, but after being dethroned, he now he flirts with elderly ladies to swindle them out of their money, so he can produce one disaster after another. Leo is a nerdy and timid accountant, with dreams of becoming a famed Broadway producer himself, who arrives at Bialystock's office to do his books. Upon reviewing Bialystock's accounting, Bloom theorizes that under the right circumstances, a producer could make more money with a flop than a hit. This, of course, only encourages Max to devise a bold scheme to produce and profit from the worst show Broadway has ever seen. Max invites Leo to collaborate, and at first, Leo refuses but eventually gives in.

With the plan set, the two search for the worst play ever written, hire the worst director who ever lived, and come up with $2 million to produce the play (but only use a hundred thousand of it for the play itself). Ultimately, they find their play, "Springtime for Hitler," written by one Franz Liebkind (Will Farrell, "Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy"), a nutty, neo-Nazi playwright who fancies pigeons. Then, they find their director, Roger DeBris (Gary Beach, from the musical), a flamboyant ahem "ambitious" director. Max raises the $2 million by launching himself into "Little Old Lady Land." With a play, a director and financing in place, soon all is going according to plan, and what could possibly go wrong?

How about this awful play backfiring and becoming a satirical hit!

Much of the original cast of the musical returned for the film, except for Brad Oscar (who originally played Franz) and Cady Huffman (who originally played Ulla), who were replaced by Will Farrell and Uma Thurman, who both did surprisingly well in this picture. Uma played Ulla (to write her entire name here would consume the rest of this column), the Swedish beauty who wished to audition for the play and later became Bloom's love interest. All things considered, I thought the cast did well, although I found Broderick irritating. He was a far too whiney and nerdy, and isn't the overacting genius that Gene Wilder from the original film was.

The movie was directed and choreographed by Susan Stroman, who also directed and choreographed the musical. In the film version, Stroman directs as though she were directing the musical. The camera work consists mostly of wide angle shots with few close-ups of the actors, while the actors themselves continue to rely on big, overacted physical gestures, as if they were still on a Broadway stage. OK, nothing really bad about that, but rather than making a filmed version of a musical, they could have tried to shoot the film more like a movie - a technique that was used to great effect in the film version of "The Phantom of the Opera."

As for the songs, they're what you'd expect, having been written by Brooks himself. In general, they are mildly funny, but are mostly hit or miss. My favorites are: "Opening Night," the first song of the film reflecting the audience's dismay with Bialystock's latest flop; "Along Came Bialy," a song performed by Nathan Lane's character, featuring a chorus line consisting of well choreographed little old ladies with walkers (you heard me); and "Haben Sie Gehort Das Deutsche Band?," which isn't terribly funny, but to see Farrell dance and sing in German alone is a sight to behold.

As for the rest of the humor, it's typical Brooks, although it seems somewhat outdated and dull with its satirical attacks. The best example of this well-worn ploy is the musical number "Keep It Gay," which implies Broadway is dominated by homosexuals. The number involves members of Roger DeBris's production crew dancing around in costumes obviously resembling the Village People. How many times have we heard that age-old joke about the Village People? Seriously!

To speak in defense of "The Producers," I will say that I did laugh quite a few times and enjoyed some of it. However, I would recommend it only to fans of musicals and of course, Brooks. The 2005 version doesn't hold a torch to the original film, but then again, it's not trying to. It's simply a cellulose version of the Tony Award-winning musical and, in that, it succeeds - although I hardly consider this one of Brooks' best.

The DVD offers some special features that are worthwhile. Among them are a feature-length commentary from Stroman, some deleted scenes, outtakes and a featurette with an analysis of the musical scene "I Wanna Be a Producer."

For those who would like to see the original 1968 film version of "The Producers," it is possible to find a single disc edition in almost any DVD bargain bin for $10. Or, if you feel really ambitious, you can track down the two-disc deluxe edition with a modest collection of special features for only $5 more.

For movie buffs who want to see Brooks when he was at the top of his comedic game, I also recommend the Mel Brooks Collection, a DVD boxed set containing eight of Brooks' best and most memorable comedies including: "The Twelve Chairs," "To Be or Not to Be," "History of the World, Part 1," "High Anxiety," "Silent Movie," "Robin Hood: Men in Tights," "Blazing Saddles," and the Oscar nominated "Young Frankenstein!" Each film is included with its own selection of special features, and are presented in their original, widescreen formats. The collection is pricey at about $70, but worth every penny!


Local Chatter

Heal fast, there are things to do

By Kate Terry

PREVIEW Columnist

It's the first week in June and I'm back home after three visits to Mercy Hospital - and I'm delighted and thankful to be home. And this time, I mean to stay for a long time because I heal fast!

And I have things to do. Columns to write and some other things. And there's a lot of reading to catch up on.

In the meantime, let someone else watch TV.

It all started in March and here it is June. That's a lot of available time in which to reflect. And reflect I did.

This is what I want the people of Pagosa to know: that their diversity and talents make up a special place to live. Their compassion is beautiful - so warm, so welcome.

New people pick up on this, but when one has lived here for 23 years, as I have, it's easy to take things for granted - until, wham, you are confronted with a problem and people come out of the walls. I can only say, "Thank you." I love you all.

Fun on the Run

Dog writes to heaven

Dear Heaven: Why do humans smell the flowers, but seldom, if ever, smell one another?

Dear Heaven: When we get to heaven, can we sit on your couch? Or is it still the same old story?

Dear Heaven: Why are there cars named after the jaguar, the cougar, the mustang, the colt, the stingray and the rabbit, but not one named for a dog? How often do you see a cougar riding around? We do love a nice ride! Would it be so hard to rename the "Chrysler Eagle" the "Chrysler Beagle"?

Dear Heaven: We dogs can understand human verbal instructions, hand signals, whistles, horns, clickers, beepers, scent IDs, electromagnetic energy fields and Frisbee flight paths. What do humans understand?

Dear Heaven: Are there mailmen in heaven? If there are, will I have to apologize?

Dear Heaven: Let me give you a list of just some of the things I must remember to be a good dog.

1. I will not eat the cats' food before they eat it or after they throw it up.

2. I will not roll on dead seagulls, fish, crabs, etc., just because I like the way they smell.

3. The diaper pail is not a cookie jar.

4. The sofa is not a 'face towel.' Neither are Mom and Dad's laps.

5. The garbage collector is not stealing our stuff.

6. My head does not belong in the refrigerator.

7. I will not bite the officer's hand when he reaches in for Mom's driver's license and registration.

8. I don't need to suddenly stand straight up when I'm under the coffee table.

9. I must shake the rainwater out of my fur before entering the house, not after.

10. I will not throw up in the car.

11. I will not come in from outside and immediately drag my butt.

12. I will not sit in the middle of the living room and lick myself when we have company.

13. The cat is not a 'squeaky toy' so when I play with him and he makes that noise, it's usually not a good thing.

Community Center News

Old Glory Dance and Patriotic Night highlight center June calendar

By Becky Herman

PREVIEW Columnist

The June Old Glory dance Friday, June 23, will feature live music from The High Rollers of Durango and a catered dinner from Eddie B Cookin. There will be a choice of a pulled pork or grilled chicken sandwich, along with potato salad, cole slaw, beans, iced tea, and apple cobbler for dessert. A cash bar with an assortment of beers and wines will also be available.

Tickets can be purchased at WolfTracks and the community center. The price of a ticket for both the dinner and dance is $20 per person; these tickets can be obtained from now until 5 p.m. June 20. Dinner tickets won't be available at the door.

If you prefer to attend just the dance, a pre-paid ticket is $12 per person and $15 at the door. The dinner will be 6-7 p.m. The dance will begin at 7 and last until 11. This is an adult event; those under 21 are not allowed. Please prepare for an ID check if necessary.

Patriotic Night

We are planning decorations and an exciting program for Patriotic Night.

All who attend will kick off Pagosa's Fourth of July celebration, participating in a patriotic sing-along, listening to inspirational talks and watching a DVD presentation featuring some of our local veterans and men and women currently serving in the military.

Andy Fautheree, our local veteran's officer, will be our emcee this year; John Graves will lead the crowd in the sing-along and Mercy's friend and community center volunteer Gene Tautges will do the DVD presentation. Gene has been busy taking photos of our local heroes.

If we're lucky, we may have the Mountain Harmony Ladies Barbershop show up to entertain us. All this, followed by a dessert potluck, will take place 7-9 p.m. Friday, June 30. The Chamber of Commerce will again provide flags for all in attendance.

Call Mercy at 264-4152, or Andy Fautheree at 731-3837 for more information.

Self-help for health

Come join in this new program at the center; it is free.

This is a series of classes starting June 19, from 5:30-8 p.m.

Medora Bass, Ph. D. will be the facilitator. She has been using expressive therapy to help others since the mid 1960s and has taught the same at J.F. Kennedy University in Orinda, Calif. and Southwestern College in Santa Fe, NM. She has 20 years experience dealing with health challenges.

Also, Medora has painted for 10 years and has a M.F.A. in painting. In this class, she will introduce tools such as art, imagery, dreams, writing, observation and dialogue which can help you become aware of possibly detrimental patterns, so you can then choose to change the habits. Insight gained from using the tools may help a person in making health-care decisions and evaluating a particular form of treatment.

Those interested are to be reminded that the classes are not meant to diagnose or treat any illness. The goal of this free program is to help participants be aware of factors that may affect their health and help them better realize their goals.

Register in advance by calling the community center at 264-4152 and bring the following supplies to the first class:

- notebook for keeping a journal and for optional drawing;

- drawing pad (newsprint is OK). A large pad, 18x24, may help you be freer in your expression. Paper will be provided at the first class.

- cray pas (oil pastels) - soft ones are nice. Crayons and markers can be difficult to use.

For more information, or if you are interested in attending but the class day or time does not work for you, call Medora at 264-5564.

Foodies Club

The newly formed Foodies Club met at the center last week, and it is no exaggeration to say that everyone had a wonderful time.

The appetizers were varied and delicious and showed off some true culinary creativity. Equally enjoyable was the company and the conversation.

It was decided to meet again at 6 p.m. June 21, when the emphasis will be on French cuisine and chocolate.

If you are interested in joining this club, call the center at 264-4152. R.S.V.P. is required. You won't be sorry!

Scrapbooking club

This is to remind everyone the Community Scrapbook Club will meet 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, June 10, in the South Conference Room. This will be the last meeting until Sept. 9.

Over-the-Hill Hoopsters

Larry Page started this group of enthusiastic seniors who play basketball Tuesdays and Thursdays at 8 a.m.

Some of them played college ball at Mississippi State, Kentucky, UCLA and Kansas State, but don't let that history stop you from coming to see what this group is all about. They have lots of laughs and get a little exercise in the bargain.

By the way, you don't have to be a senior; everyone is welcome.

Photoshop class

Bruce Andersen's Beginners' Photoshop class will run for two more Monday evenings, June 12 and 19.

Bruce tells me he may do a different class in July - perhaps one in which he will cover the workings of digital cameras or perhaps one which focuses on a specific type or technique of photography. Let Bruce know what interests you; his e-mail is baphoto@centurytel.net. Of course, you are welcome to contact the center at 264-4152 with questions.

eBay club

The next meeting of the eBay club will be held at the center at 9 a.m. Thursday, June 15. Anyone who is interested in buying or selling (or both) on eBay is welcome to attend. Call Ben Bailey at 264-0293 or e-mail him at benbaileynewton@yahoo.com if you plan to attend. Members are picking up lots of really great tips for using eBay, so don't miss out. This club is not affiliated with or endorsed by eBay Inc.


Richard Harris, who began the yoga group last year, has informed us he will no longer be able to conduct yoga classes because of a pending move out of the area. We thank him for his enthusiasm, his interest in helping others, and his willingness to share his talents with the class members. Richard, you will be greatly missed.

In Richard's absence, Diana Baird has agreed to step in as leader of the yoga group. Diana has attended the class from its inception and has, on occasion, acted as group leader. We welcome Diana to the community center's family of dedicated volunteers who selflessly give of their time and expertise to conduct classes, programs, and events. Without these people, we could not provide the wide variety of programs which are currently being offered at the center.

Line dancing update

Gerry, Peggy and Elaine will combine efforts to continue to offer a free line dancing workout 10:30-11:30 a.m. every Monday. Newcomers are encouraged to come early at 10 for introduction.

Men's beginning class starts at 9:20 a.m. with country two-step. Learn basic steps and two or three leads. No previous knowledge is necessary but you must be under 100 years old, ambulatory, and have a good sense of humor.

These women promise to have laughs, rhythm, simple steps to good music and Gerry says, "It is an aerobic workout, too, and we aim to please everyone." Come try this fun, free program offered at the community center.

For more information call the center at 264-4152, or Gerry at 731-9734.

Computer lab news

Our good friend, Peter Welch, has found us a new firewall/router to set our network back on its feet; the cost of this piece of equipment purchased from eBay is about 10 percent of the cost of a new one from the manufacturer. We are all looking forward to being able to allow our 18-and-under users back into the computer lab.

We have had several cancellations for the June Beginning Computing classes. If you are somewhat familiar with computers and would like to pick up the class in the second week, call the center for a place in the Tuesday (for anyone) or the Wednesday (seniors') class. All classes offered by community center staff are free of charge.

If you are interested in joining our new listserv, stop by the center for the handout which will walk you through the subscription process. Or, call me at 264-4152 or e-mail me at rhp@zworg.com with questions.

Center's hours

The community center's hours are 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday; 8-5:30 Tuesday through Friday; 10-4 Saturday.

Activities this week

Today - Over-the-Hill Hoopsters, 8-9 a.m.; yoga, 11 a.m.-noon; Spanish Arts and Crafts summer camp, 12:30-3:30 and 3:30-6:30 p.m.; Computer Q&A session with Becky, 1-4 p.m.; Teen Center open, 4-8 p.m.; Chimney Rock potluck, 6-8 p.m.; arthritis class, 6-8 p.m.

June 9 - Senior walking program, 11:15-11:35 a.m.; senior bridge, 12:30-4 p.m.; Teen Center open, 2-8 p.m.; Does God Exist seminar, 7-11 p.m.

June 10 - Scrapbooking club, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.; Teen center open, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.; Does God Exist seminar, 10 a.m.- noon and 4-11 p.m.

June 11 - Church of Christ Sunday service, 10 a.m.-noon; Grace Evangelical Free Church service, 10 a.m.-noon; High Roads Baptist Church, 2-4 p.m.

June 12 - Legal depositions, 9 a.m.-4 p.m.; line dancing, 9-11:30 a.m.; senior walking program, 11:15-11:35 a.m.; Spanish Arts and Crafts summer camp, 12:30-3:30 and 3:30-6:30 p.m.; senior bridge, 12:30-4 p.m.; Teen Center open, 4-8 p.m.; Loma Linda HOA meeting, 7-9 p.m.; Photoshop class with Bruce Andersen, 7-9 p.m.

June 13 - Over-the-Hill Hoopsters, 8-9 a.m.; Beginning Computing skills, 10 a.m.-noon; seniors' walking program, 11:15-11:35 a.m.; Spanish Arts and Crafts summer camp, 12:30-3:30 and 3:30-6:30 p.m.; Teen Center open, 4-8 p.m.; Creepers Jeepers, 7-8 p.m.

June 14 - Eagle's Loft HOA meeting, 8 a.m.-noon; Beginning Computing skills for seniors, 10 a.m.-noon; Wednesday bridge club, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.; Spanish Arts and Crafts summer camp, 12:30-3:30 and 3:30-6:30 p.m.; Teen Center open, 4-8 p.m.; Weight Watchers, 4:45-6:45 p.m.; Church of Christ Bible study, 7-8 p.m.

June 15 - Over-the-Hill-Hoopsters, 8-9 a.m.; eBay Club, 9-10:30 a.m.; yoga, 11-noon; watercolor workshop with Betty Slade, 12:30-3 p.m.; Computer Q&A session with Becky, 1-4 p.m.; Teen Center open, 4-8 p.m.; arthritis class, 6-8 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

National Men's Health Week - time to close the gender gap

By Jim Pearson

SUN Columnis

National Men's Health Week is June 12-18.

It's not just a man's issue, it's a family issue. The goal is to get men to be more proactive in personal health management issues and family members and friends can help. Men can also help each other by speaking out about their own health problem experiences.

Research shows that women generally take better care of themselves than men do. Men are more likely to engage in unhealthy behavior, work in dangerous occupations, and are more likely not to be covered under health insurance. Men generally put off going to the doctor when they know they should. Even the smallest symptoms could end up being something serious. The result is that men are more likely to die at an earlier age than women.

In fact, the gap is getting wider. In 1920, women outlived men by an average of one year, while today the average is five years.

One reason this is a family issue is because more than half the women living in poverty today were living comfortably when their husbands were alive. Research has shown that of all the deaths in men, half were preventable. Men seem to need that extra nudge from a wife or other person of influence to take a more active roll in their health care.

A good Web site to explore what men can do to promote good health is http://menshealthnetwork.org.

Fly it with respect

Flag Day is Wednesday, June 14.

It is time for some of us to pull our flag out of storage and fly our colors. It is also a time to reflect on this great American symbol, which so often is being displayed improperly or left to disintegrate on somebody's fence post.

In a 1917 Flag Day message, President Woodrow Wilson said, "This flag, which we honor and which under we serve, is the emblem of our unity, our power, our thought and purpose as a nation. It has no other character than that which we give it from generation to generation. The choices are ours. It floats in majestic silence above the hosts that execute those choices, whether in peace or in war. And yet, though silent, it speaks to us - speaks to us as the past, of the men and women who went before us, and of the records they wrote upon it. We celebrate the day of its birth; and from its birth until now it has witnessed a great history, has floated on high the symbol of great events, of a great plan of life worked out by a great people."

I say that we need to protect and honor this great American symbol. The laws relating to the flag of the United States of America are found in detail in the United States Code Titles 4, 18 and 36. These laws were supplemented by executive orders and presidential proclamations. Here are a few tips for displaying the American Flag.

- It is the universal custom to display the flag only from sunrise to sunset on buildings and on stationary flagstaffs in the open.

- When a patriotic effect is desired, the flag may be displayed 24 hours a day if properly illuminated during the hours of darkness.

- The flag should never touch anything beneath it, such as the ground, the floor, water, or merchandise.

- The flag should never be used as wearing apparel, bedding, or drapery.

- The flag, when it is in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem for display, should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning. You can contact American Legion Post 108 at 264-4884 for assistance.

For additional information on how display the American flag, go to www.access.gpo.gov/uscode/title4/chapter1_.html.

Think home safety

The National Safety Council estimates that of the more than 100,000 people who died from preventable injuries, 97 percent of the causes were non-work related. Home-related accidents account for a high number of deaths each year. Safety around the home is a full time job for all of us.

- Do you know what to do if you have a cooking fire?

- Do you know what type fire extinguisher you should have to put out cooking and electrical fires?

- Is your fire extinguisher up to date?

- Do you have a family fire escape plan that everybody knows and has practiced?

- Do you have working smoke detectors in your home that you routinely test?

These fire safety questions are just a few of the questions you should be considering and getting resolved. Other areas of safety that you should consider are medication, food, environmental and general home safety.

- Are your medications secure and do you have a systematic way of remembering dosages?

- Do you wash your hands after using the bathroom so that you don't expose others to hepatitis and infectious bacteria?

- Do you follow safety rules around the home when using power tools and chemicals?

- Are you aware of all the safety issues surrounding ladders?

- Do you keep clutter away from walkways to minimize tripping hazards?

We all tend to be lackadaisical about our personal safety. It seems that it only becomes an issue when there's an accident.

Don't put it off. Get started today by picking up your safety check list at The Den.

Loss of friends

It starts when we're young and gets worse as we age - the loss of friends.

It affects all of us, but especially the elderly. They may be a close friend who takes you to play bridge. All of a sudden you find that not only do you not have a ride, but your bridge partner and dear friend isn't around anymore. One by one, you keep losing friends and family members. It not only puts a wrinkle in your social and family life, but it can cause depression.

If you are experiencing such a feeling, or need somebody to talk to, The Den can help. Susan Stoffer, a licensed counselor, comes to The Den each Monday at 11 a.m. to provide you with someone to talk to in confidence. Susan offers this initial counseling as a free service for seniors in need. For further information, contact The Den.

Transportation services

Are you age 60-plus and new to the community? Do you need help getting around town? We have the answer for you.

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday we'll pick you up right at your door. You can hop on our air-conditioned, 18-passenger bus and get your errands accomplished. All this for a suggested donation of just $2. For further details and route information, call Musetta at 264-2167.

Ice cream social

Our ice cream socials were too much of a hit. We served up three tubs of vanilla ice cream to 70 seniors in Arboles and Pagosa Springs before running out. John Graves kicked things into gear by playing a few tunes on the piano while those in the crowd tried to eat ice cream covered with their favorite toppings and sing at the same time. Be sure to join us for our next ice cream social immediately following the meal Friday, July 7.

Microwaving eggs

The first thing you should consider when microwaving eggs is to never put an egg in its shell in the microwave. Steam buildup inside will cause it to explode.

Deposit the egg from its shell into a microwaveable dish and prick the egg yoke gently with the tip of a knife. This allows steam to escape from the yolk membrane. It also helps to use 30-50 percent power, which allows the egg to cook more slowly. This is done as the egg yoke cooks more quickly than the egg white in a microwave, so a lower power allows the white to get done before the yoke is overcooked.

You can microwave omelets and scrambled eggs on full power because the beaten mixture cooks more evenly. It's best to microwave these egg dishes covered and remove from the microwave just before it is done. Let it set covered until the food finishes cooking.

For more information on eggs and egg safety, the American Egg Board has an educational Web site at http://aeb.org/.

Team building

An elderly woman tells me about the service department at an auto dealership charging her over $500 for repairs she doesn't think she needs, when all she went in for was to have her car serviced.

A veteran comes into our office with a Medicare Prescription Drug card, and has no idea why he received it since he has those benefits through the Veteran's Administration.

A married couple, lured by fellow churchgoers, throw their life savings into a high return, limited partnership scheme, only to find out later that the company has been indicted for failing to identify, separate or reconcile monies earned pursuant to an agreed upon 20-percent performance fee. The couple loses their life savings to a scam.

People of all ages get themselves into trouble by approving and/or jumping into something without taking the time to check it out and seek advice. Many scams and not-so-honest businesses target the elderly. It could be very difficult for most people to know whether or not an offer is a scam, or if a business is less than being honest with you.

What can the elderly do to protect themselves in today's world, especially when most are on a limited budget?

Most people can't afford to keep a team of attorneys, financial advisors, mechanics and medical specialists on staff to help with everyday situations they are faced with. That doesn't mean that you should toss the team idea in the trash.

With a little effort, you can draft your own team of professionals and advisors at little or no cost to you. Some team members could be made up of family members and friends you can trust to guide you in the right direction. The Den should be another member of your team. Not only do we have a wealth of information available both in our library of video tapes and books, but we can get you pointed the right way. Another member of your team could be an organization that specializes in senior issues such as AARP which provides an elder watch Web site at www.aarpelderwatch.org. Public agencies such as your local police department and social services could also be a part of your team, as well as your family physician.

There is one thing for certain as we go through life, and that is we all get older. Most of us are going to reach that stage in our lives where we will need to depend on others for services that we will no longer be able to handle on our own. It's never too late to gather up your own team to call on in times of need.

Emergency evacuation

Homebound seniors should have an evacuation plan that includes any assistance they will need to vacate their houses.

If you need assistance in developing such a plan, contact Musetta at The Den.

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 older, and can be purchased at The Den for $5 Mondays and Fridays from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Tuesdays and Wednesdays 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. It's still not too late to sign up and acquire the benefits for 2006.

Home-delivered meals

The den provides home delivery of 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.

Vote centers

Archuleta County is one of the counties in Colorado which is moving to vote centers.

With vote centers, voters may cast ballots at any of several polling places around the county instead of their neighborhood precincts. This system allows voters to vote close to work or while out running errands. For election officials, the system lets them operate fewer voting locations with fewer people.

Archuleta County Clerk and Recorder June Madrid will be at The Den at 12:45 p.m. Wednesday, June 14, and at Arboles Meal Day Thursday, June 15, to explain this voting change. For further information, go to www.archuletacounty.org and click on the voter information button.

Oktoberfest volunteers

Archuleta Seniors 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. We need committee help with the program, food preparation, food service, etc. This is the largest fund-raiser of the year for Archuleta Seniors, Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to helping our seniors. For more information, contact The Den at 264-2167.

Board member sought

The Regional Advisory Council on Aging (RACOA) is making an effort to form a more diverse board and is seeking a senior to represent the Latino community of Archuleta County on the board of directors. This is a volunteer position, and is one of three directors who represent our county.

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.

Thank you

Thanks to Bonnie, owner of Slices of Nature, for donating merchandise to The Den for prizes and special gifts to our seniors. We are very grateful to you for your generosity and loving care for our senior community.

Duplicate bridge

A new bridge group is forming under the Bridge for Fun group, called Duplicate Bridge. The group will play on 12:30-4 p.m. Fridays in The Den's lounge.

For this to happen, there will need to be a minimum of two tables (four teams). You will need to have a partner and be signed up in advance. We are expecting to begin around the first week in July. If you are interested in joining this group, call Stan Church at 731-2217 for more information.

Senior of the Week

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

Activities at a glance

Friday, June 9 - Qi Gong, 10 a.m.; gym walk, 11:15 a.m.; Bridge 4 Fun, 12:30 p.m.; senior board meeting, 1 p.m.

Monday, June 12 - Gym walk, 11:15 a.m.; Bridge 4 fun, 12:30 p.m.

Tuesday, June 13 - Gym walk, 11:15 a.m.; blood pressure checks, 11:30 a.m.; canasta, 1 p.m.

Wednesday, June 14 - Basic Computer, 10 a.m.; Vote Center, June Madrid, 12:45 p.m.

Thursday, June 15 - Arboles birthday and Father's Day celebrations; Vote Center, June Madrid, 12:45 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. Menu subject to change.

Thursday, June 8 - No meal served.

Friday, June 9 - Chile con carne, yellow squash, sliced pears with strawberries and corn bread.

Monday, June 12 - Chicken and noodles, squash, grilled green beans, apricot-pineapple compote and whole wheat roll.

Tuesday, June 13 - Porcupine meatballs, whipped potatoes with gravy, vegetable medley, almond peaches and whole wheat roll.

Wednesday, June 14 - Beef and mushroom pizza, Italian vegetables and plums.

Thursday, June 15 - No meal served.

Veteran's Corner

Recognize signs of stroke, help save a life

By Andy Fautheree

SUN Columnist

I recently came across some information concerning stroke victims. This could be life-saving information and certainly is applicable to our aging veteran population.

A case example that was cited in the information I received concerned a lady who stumbled and took a little fall at an outdoor social function.

She assured everyone that she was fine (they offered to call paramedics) and that she had just tripped over a brick because of her new shoes. They got her cleaned up and got her a new plate of food. While she appeared a bit shaken up, she went about enjoying herself the rest of the evening.

Diagnosed too late

The lady's husband called friends later and said that his wife had been taken to the hospital and had passed away. She had suffered a stroke at the gathering.

Had they known how to identify the signs of a stroke, perhaps she would be alive today. Some people don't die from strokes, but they often end up in a helpless, hopeless condition instead.

Stroke reversed?

The information quoted a neurologist who said if he can get to a stroke victim within three hours he can reverse the effects of a stroke. He said the trick is getting a stroke recognized and diagnosed, then getting the patient medically cared for within three hours. This part may or may not be true in all cases, but certainly it could go a long way in successfully recovering or surviving the effects of a stroke.


The three key elements to remember for a person that may be having a stroke are: S T R.

If you see someone who may be experiencing symptoms of a stroke:

- Ask them to smile for you (S).

- Ask them to talk to you, say a simple sentence (T).

- Ask them to raise both their arms (R).

Call 911 immediately if the person has difficulty responding to any of the three questions.

Artery blockage

I recall my dad, at an advanced age, was diagnosed with and treated for blockage of the artery leading to his brain, which may have saved him from a stroke. I believe this can be detected by a medical professional when they listen to sound in the artery in your neck where the blockage can occur. I'm happy to say my dad lived for quite some years after this treatment, and did not suffer from a stroke.

Smile, Talk, Raise

Remember the Smile, Talk, and Raise both arms questions, and you might save someone from death or from suffering the consequences of a stroke.


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 afautheree@archuletacounty.org. 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

Donations, new programs highlight start of summer

By Christine Eleanor Anderson

PREVIEW Columnist

We have started the summer with some lovely gifts from our patrons.

Windsor Chacey delighted all of us by finding "le petit prince" when she cleaned her closets. The little prince doll she gave us looks exactly like the one on the front of the library copy of Saint-Exupery's "The Little Prince." The little guy is now ensconced in the children's room.

Kingsbury and Charity Pitcher, Hannah and Michael Kuhn, and Barbara Mason also were very generous to the library with gifts that will be used for furniture or equipment. And, Albert and Elsbeth Schnell made an appreciated donation in memory of Jamie Maki.

We have also been receiving a lot of wonderful book, audio, video and game donations, some to be added to the collection, some for the book sale.

Thanks to Bobbie Akers, Eileen Anderson, Rita Barton, Medora Bass, Lisa Brown, Marilyn Falvey, Bob Fisher, Scottie Gibson, Zoe Groulx, Robert Hogrefe, Carole Howard, Kathleen Isberg, Leslie Jackson, George Johnson, Suzan Joy, Mary Kurt Mason, Kay Link, Cathy McIver, Phil Mattock, Frances Moritz, Mark Purvis, Kay Redfield, Jacky Reece, Alexandria Reeds, Janet Koher, Robbie Schwartz, Carol Thomas, Wyatt and Laurie Walston, James and Margaret Wilson. And, as ever, thanks to our faithful and generous Anonymous.

The Knights of Sisson

A few more Knights of Sisson could sign up for the Internet Chess Club. Contact David Bright for details at david76sr71jem@yahoo.com. A yahoo account is needed for participation in this activity.

Summer Volunteer orientation

We had a nice turnout for the Summer Volunteer orientation.

If you missed it, please feel free to come to the library and sign up any time. We are working to give interesting projects to everyone who is generous enough to volunteer.

If you filled out a form for work this year and have not been contacted, please be patient with us. The library may not yet have gotten to the right project for your interest as indicated on the volunteer form.

Pagosa Pretenders

We are in for a treat!

The middle school and high school students attending drama camp are coming to the library to perform at 11 a.m. Saturday, June 10. Come join us for this entertainment event for all ages.

Summer reading for kids

Our summer reading program, " Paws, Claws, Scales and Tales," starts June 27. Sign-up sheets and packets are available at the library desk.

Language conversation groups

Several of our patrons have indicated an interest in library "conversation groups" for adults to work on their foreign language skills. We have sign-up sheets at the front desk and are looking for facilitators to lead the sessions. French and Spanish groups are at the forefront.

If you are interested in other languages, like German or Italian, let us know and we will try to help get the meetings moving.

The library is acquiring some appropriate materials in foreign languages, both in print and audio format. Due to high demand for these materials, we will be instituting some check-out restrictions so that everyone can be served.

Summer listening for adults

More great books on CD came in last week and are available for your pleasure.

In the category of historical fiction we have "The Mercury Visions of Louis Daguerre," a reinvention of the life of the artist and physicist Louis Daguerre, the inventor of the daguerrotype process. The book recreates Paris in 1849, 10 years after his invention took the world by storm, and imagines the disintegration of Daguerre into madness caused by exposure to mercury, an agent used in his successful process. This work is a thoughtful tracing of the birth of a new art form.

National Book Award finalist Lily Tuck reports "The News From Paraguay," blending fact and fiction in a sweeping romance between an Irish beauty and a man destined to become a dictator of Paraguay. This work also starts in Paris at mid-19th century and follows the characters to revolution in South America. The last disc in the set commences with a U.S. congressional hearing about America's involvement in overturning a foreign government. La plus ca change

Also fun is "1,000 White Women," Jim Fergus' book.

At an 1854 peace conference, Cheyenne Chief Little Wolf requested 1,000 white women as brides for his warriors. This fiction imagines what would have happened had the "Brides for Indians" program, intended to assimilate the Indians into white culture, actually taken place.

For other tastes, we have " Tyrannosaur Canyon," a blood and gore Crichton-like thriller; a new western, "Justice of the Mountain Man"; and "The Jesus Papers" by Michael Baigent, the author who just sued Dan Brown of "Da Vinci Code" fame for copyright violation (Baigent lost, in case you didn't follow the matter).

Take your library with you wherever you go this summer.

Pagosa Reads

'The Hungry Ocean' - riveting adventure often reads like poetry

By Carole Howard

Special to The PREVIEW

"The Hungry Ocean", by Linda Greenlaw. Hyperion, New York, 1999.

You probably remember "The Perfect Storm," Sebastian Junger's No. 1 best-seller that became an award-winning movie and proved yet again that the best stories are true stories. What you may not remember is that in his book Junger describes Linda Greenlaw as "one of the best sea captains, period, on the East Coast."

Greenlaw's own book, titled "The Hungry Ocean" from a line in Shakespeare's Sonnet 64, not only demonstrates her prowess on the open ocean but also her mastery of the English language.

First off, though, let's abuse ourselves of any notion that this is a woman's book, just because it is written by one. Greenlaw's book is, plain and simple, a riveting adventure story that often reads like poetry - especially when she is describing the beauty and power of the sea. It will be enjoyed by everyone who loves first-rate non-fiction.

In media interviews and her own notes, Greenlaw makes it clear that she thinks it is "no big deal" to be probably the world's only female swordfish captain. She points out that the obstacles that challenge fishermen on a daily basis are ignorant of gender, and whatever respect she's garnered came the old-fashioned way - she earned it. It's obvious from the tales in this book that Greenlaw's high expectations for her crew are exceeded only by what she expects from herself. But she's also willing to admit that her crew probably works hard because "no self-respecting fisherman will allow himself to be outworked by a woman."

"The Hungry Ocean" covers a 30-day sword-fishing voyage aboard one of the best-outfitted boats on the East Coast. The excitement starts even before Greenlaw and her five-man crew leave the dock, and it doesn't stop until the last page. Savage weather, equipment failure, too few fish and too many sharks are just some of the dangers they contend with.

Even in the best of conditions, operating a commercial fishing boat is a dangerous and exhausting business, and Greenlaw's re-creation of her adventures are so vivid that you can get tired just reading them. Similarly, her descriptions of her five-man crew are so insightful you come to know them well - from their remarkable seafaring talents to their arguments and the jokes they play on one another.

Greenlaw was born in Connecticut, and raised and educated in Maine. She is a graduate of Colby College when she majored in English. She traces her fascination with the fishing life to watching a lobster boat when she was 12. Starting out as a cook and deckhand during her summer breaks from college to raise money for her tuition, she worked her way into the captain's chair and has been fishing commercially for more than 20 years.

In spite of her expertise in two complex and seemingly unrelated fields - fishing and writing - Greenlaw maintains her modesty and sense of humor. For example, when Vanity Fair did a celebrity profile on her, she posed for the magazine's photographer in orange rubber overalls and a threadbare denim shirt that she says probably still smelled of bait.

She also says that the opportunity to write her own book, a process that took 12 months, was the single biggest challenge of her life. Readers who marvel at her frequently terrifying adventures at sea as described in "The Hungry Ocean" will find this an amazing claim by a fascinating woman.

Carole Howard, retired worldwide vice president of public relations for The Reader's Digest Association in New York, lives in Pagosa Springs where she continues to write and speak on PR, marketing and management. Among her favorite childhood memories is going to her local library near Vancouver, Canada, with her parents and being allowed to choose whatever book she wanted to read.

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.

The Wine Whisperer

Don't be hurried: Scotch rocks, and Dad

By Laura Winzeler

PREVIES Columnist

I am so not a Scotch drinker. I have never suffered one moment's temptation to learn to appreciate the spirit. I'm a wino, pure and simple.

Several years ago I posted a portfolio of over 200 wine reviews on a pay-per-click Web site. I co-created what came to be known as Wine Write Offs: a group of reviewers would sample identical wines and upload their perceptions as simultaneously as possible. It was great fun, this cyber tasting panel.

A Single Malt Scotch Sip Off was inevitable. I was the only woman who participated with a group of six men. A girl could not have asked for a more supportive first-time single malt experience. The men were very practiced and knowledgeable in all things Scotch. They were all frequent imbibers with decades of practice to call upon. Me? I did it for my father. My father had been dead for four years. There are times in which I think of him and miss his annoyingly practical advice more than others. This period was one such passage.

Should you ask me to reel off a list of the things he cherished most, I would quickly reply: "Golf; deep sea fishing (albacore!); writing his own monthly column for Riviera Country Club's magazine; being a West Los Angeles Realtor; Brentwood Presbyterian Church; Don Rickles; and Scotch Whisky. (Runners up include: artichokes; Glen Miller and His Orchestra; Bob Newhart; my brother's little league years; and that first big job I landed fresh out of college with Blue Cross of California.)

I believed that perhaps by dipping my writer's toe into the heady Highland waters for this group review I could invoke and petition, in some sacramental manner, the good graces and gentle guidance of my father, who art in heaven.

But where to start? How does one who knows nothing about the designated adult beverage orient herself? Ask people you trust for advice. After consulting two of the most seasoned Scotchophiles on the Web site, it seemed clear that I should procure a bottle of The Glenlivet, and the older the better - as in past the 12-year mark.

A gal pal suggested that I visit a bar and sample a glass of Glenlivet rather than committing to an entire bottle in the near-certain event that I hated it. My exact words: "I would rather flush the $55 down my toilet than sit alone in a smoky, Pagosa bar on a Saturday afternoon, a glass of neat Scotch in front of me." Gave "invitation for disaster" a whole new meaning.

I found the Glenlivet 12 but lo and behold, the 18 was in stock. Trying desperately to maximize any chance in hell that I could taste the Scotch without eliciting the gag reflex, I forked over the big bucks, all the while thinking how many Best Buy bottles of wine that same $55 could buy. The liquor store owner looked stunned as he took my cash. I feared he might alert the local press to the breaking news: Town Wino Buys Scotch. Film at 11.

I offered: "Oh, another little Taste Off on that Web site I do all those wine reviews for", and he agreed that the Glenlivet 18 was about as smooth as they come. Taking the distiller's advice - "Don't be hurried" - I took the evaluating very, very slowly.

In the wine glass the color was just exquisite to my eye; a burnt honey, a golden amber. It was a most warm and lush looking liquid. In the nose? My father. I simply smelled my father. I was a young girl again and I heard the clink clink clink of his Scotch rocks glass as he descended the stairs after dressing for a dinner out with my mother. He golfed every Thursday and Saturday. He came home after his 18 holes and ritualistically readied himself for their date over Scotch rocks. Never on a Tuesday. Never a gin and tonic.

Until I was a woman I did not know it was possible for a man to barbecue without a glass of scotch rocks in hand. Because I can not smell Scotch without thinking of my father it took a long while to get past the misting eyes, the lump in throat. I rather liked the way the alcohol tickled the little nose hairs on the upward rise and every time I swirled and sniffed I perceived a different set of aromas. Those that leaped out at me the loudest were light floral notes, orange blossom, honey and faint hints of chocolate. The more I explored, the more I found other aromas - vanilla, resin, and a delicate spiciness reminiscent of toffee and cloves.

Having "not hurried" for about two hours, the moment of the first sip had arrived. There was no turning back and no more pathetic stalling. I sipped tentatively. I broke out in laughter. I was stunned - I liked it! Taking the tiniest of tastes, I was struck by what a totally different sensory adventure it was from wine. The dominant in-mouth flavors were those of honey, lemon peel and toffee vanilla. The warmth of the whisky was shocking yet soothing. My top lip was quivering in the heat and the back of my throat, down into my upper chest, radiating. But it was a mellow and rich, almost hypnotic warmth; not a burning flame to recoil from.

Ahhhhhh ... so this is what you single malt freaks seek in these bottles? The nose deepened profoundly once the liquid had touched the palate. With each sip I felt that my mouth and nose were co-joined in some harmonious pas de deux of synergy and synthesis. Once the sense of taste and sensation engaged that of eye and nose, the circuit was complete. Add to that the caressing heat on the lips, in the mouth, and down the throat - where had I been?

After just a few swallows my head was a buzzin'. It was a very different buzz from wine - a gentle and smooth buzz - a mental and muscle relaxer extraordinaire. Both brain and body uttered a huge sigh of relief, free of the needless tensions I burden them with daily. I wondered if I had found the secret to my annoying bouts of insomnia. While I would not be inclined to forsake my beloved wine grape for Scotch Whisky, I was able to fully appreciate and understand, from the other side of the glass, those who have a devotion and dedication to the "Water of Life".

Today, just after the 10-year anniversary of my father's passing and the approach of Father's Day, I am still writing about wine and I am again passing through a period in which I sorely miss his steadying advice. I have a photo of him here, just next to my computer - his back to the Pacific Ocean, seated barefoot on a beach house ledge, waiting for the grill to heat.

The late afternoon sun lights him from behind, and in his left hand - Scotch rocks.

Food for Thought

Re What's that smell? Is it grilling season?

By Karl Isberg

Staff Writer

Smell that?

It's unmistakable.

Burning hair.

A sure sign it's grilling season at the Isberg household.

It starts in late May.

"When are you going to take the cover off the grill?," asks Kathy.


"The grill. The big metal thing out on the deck. It gets hot and you cook on it. When are you going to start grilling?"

"Well, it's still a bit chilly for that kind of thing. There's a nip in the air, you know?"

"It's eighty-two degrees out there right now."

"I'm getting old. We older folk have a bit of trouble regulating our internal body temperature. Feels like its fifty to me, maybe colder. There's a breeze blowing and you need to take wind chill into account. Wind chill can kill a man."

"Grill something, tonight. Hear me?"

"There's no propane in the tank."

"Buy some, now."

"I've decided you can't really grill - you know, really grill - unless it's done over charcoal. I need to find just the right kettle, perhaps have one custom made. And I need to procure some designer charcoal from a reclusive charcoal master in southern Missouri. This could take a while."

"Give me a break. You refuse to use charcoal because of that explosion back in eighty-six. You remember - when you poured an entire can of starter fluid on the briquets and charred everything in sight, including you and the side of the house."

"That topical cream worked wonders, didn't it?"

"Don't change the subject. The charcoal ruse isn't going to work, Buster. Buy some propane, hook up the tank, buy some goodies and grill them. It's darned near summer and you can't stall another day."


Kathy loves the grill. She associates it with the camping trips of her childhood.

Me, I'm no fan of camping trips or traditional grilling. I love braises, things that roast. I'm big on sauces - classical sauces, not the sugar-loaded glops that pass muster with the average barbecue freak. I'm a bernaise kinda boy.

And Kathy is right: I can't stand charcoal. It's too much trouble. Too dirty.

Plus, there's my problem with open flame. I need to be careful around flame, even the flame in a gas grill. I admit it: I'm a hirsute fella. I come from a long line of hairy people. If I grilled with my shirt off, it would be like setting the local fiber fest aflame. Fire scares me.

But, Kathy is insistent, so I comply.

I take about a half hour to figure out how to unhook the tank from the grill and I tote it to a local gas station where it is filled with propane. I lug the tank home, take a half hour or so to figure out how to attach it to the grill and I fire things up.

It takes another half hour to burn the bird's nest and spider webs from the interior of the grill and another half hour to incinerate the crusted molé sauce on the rack, left there from a grilled chicken molé frenzy last fall. Another thirty minutes is squandered using a wire brush to finish the job of removing potential pathogens from the grate.

What to cook?

I moan and groan as I entertain the thought of going to the trouble of producing something tasty on the grill, something tender and juicy — something not dried to a chalklike consistency, something not reduced to a cinder as a result of a moment's inattention.

I suffer many moments of inattention.

I ponder what would work with the traditional two-heat process, one side of the grill at blast-furnace heat, the other side at a much lower temperature, the food seared first on one side of the appliance and finished off on the other.

I consider my short attention span and the agony involved if I have to stand over the grill tending the food, unable to do what I do best - drink and snack prior to the meal.

That's the virtue of a braise: you can start the dish, pop it in the oven, then take a blissful, long break while the food cooks. With a braise, there's time to indulge in snacks and beverages. Life is good.

And, now that summer is nearly here, it's gin and tonic time. Why waste precious moments burning the hair off my forearms when I can be clinking cubes and squeezing limes, lying to friends and inhaling pine pollen out on the deck?

I am struck by the lightning bolt of inspiration.

Why not combine braising and grilling?

For heaven's sake, why hadn't I thought of this before? Before all the fire damage?

What's the point of grilling?, I ask.

To get that bit of flavorful char, of course.

But, I ask, Can't you get flavorful char on something already cooked?

Why, yes, you can, I say.

Then, I realize I am talking to myself.

Spurred on by the now incinerated and wire-brushed molé crust, I decide to head back that direction on the culinary map. Pork tenderloin and molé burritos, with attendant condiments.

But, instead of producing carcinogens over the course of twenty to thirty minutes, with pork and molé sauce exposed to the torture of the grill. I will cook the tenderloin first, braising it in a molé-based sauce, then finish it off on the grill.

I wash and dry a pork tenderloin, remove the silver skin, then season it with Kosher salt and pepper.

I thinly slice a white onion and chop half a bunch of cilantro. I mince five or six cloves of garlic.

I sear the tenderloin on all sides in olive oil in a Dutch oven then remove it. In go the sliced onions and I cook them over medium heat until they are translucent. In goes the garlic, a significant wad of commercial mole paste and some chicken broth. When the mix comes to a boil, back in goes the tenderloin and the pan is covered and popped into a 350 oven for 90 minutes.

I take the meat out and set the sauce to reducing over medium high heat on the stovetop, plopping in a tablespoon of chicken demi-glace and taking care the molé does not burn. I adjust the seasonings, adding a bit of ground Espanola red chile, and I toss in the chopped cilantro.

I have at hand the remainder of the batch of cilantro, chopped, a homemade pico de gallo, a simple guacamole (if I can find avocados good for something other than breaking car windows), shredded romaine, diced white onion, chopped tomato, shredded asadero and a mess of nouveau refries. The beans are made with cannellini beans - the canned variety - rinsed and simmered in chicken stock with a touch of ground cumin, a pinch of dried oregano, a bit of smushed garlic. When the liquid is absorbed by the beans, part of the mix is mashed with a fork and salt, red chile powder and cracked black pepper are added. As a finish: a glob of butter.

Ahhh butter.

When the sauce is thick and the condiments ready, on to the grill goes the tenderloin and it is browned on all sides, just enough for the added flavor. The meat is then taken to the cutting board and sliced or, better yet, shredded. Flour tortillas are popped on the grill until they puff slightly and the finished product is assembled by each diner: a tortilla heaped with meat, sprinkled with goodies, folded or rolled, and devoured.

With beer.

Lots of beer.

I figure same treatment can apply to chicken or a brisket. With a variety of different sauce bases.

This is a reasonable way to grill.

I intend to whip up a batch of gin and tonics and proceed full speed ahead this weekend.

You'll know I'm grilling if you're anywhere in the area.

You'll smell the burning hair.

Stop by and have a gin and tonic.

Oh, and bring some of that topical cream.

Extension Viewpoints

A few spots remain open in adult GPS class

By Bill Nobles

PREVIEW Columnist

Today - 4 p.m., 4-H building clean-up/make up meeting.

Today - 5:30 p.m., Vet Science meeting at San Juan Veterinary Hospital.

June 9 - 2 p.m., Colorado Kids Club meeting.

June 12 - 4 p.m., Veteran Archery meeting at Ski and Bow Rack.

June 12 - 4:30 p.m., Dog Obedience Project meeting.

June 12 - 6 p.m., Swine Project meeting.

June 13 - 6 p.m., Rocky Mountain Riders Club meeting.

June 13 - 6:30 p.m., Junior Stockman Club meeting.

June 14 - 4 p.m., Sportsfishing Project meeting.

June 14 - 6:30 p.m., Pagosa Peaks Club meeting.

June 14 - 7 p.m., Red Ryder meeting.

Adult GPS class

There are still a few spots open for the Basic GPS class, 7-9 p.m. Monday, July 10, at the Archuleta County Extension office. This class is offered free of charge.

Handouts and easy-to-use instructions on how to use the Garmin Etrex Legend will be provided. Topics will include installing the batteries, start-up sequence, using button functions, navigating, previewing main pages, setting the time zone, adjusting contrast, personal settings, and marking and entering waypoints.

This class is limited to the first 16 adults who register (no exceptions). There will be other classes offered later this summer for those who cannot make this date.

Call Kim to reserve your spot today, 264-5931.

Nutritious and delicious smoothies

Over the last several years, smoothies have become increasingly popular. These thick, cold blender beverages, made from a variety of fruits, juices or dairy products and ice are tasty, refreshing and, if made with the right ingredients, nutritious.

Easy to concoct with ingredients you likely have on hand, smoothies can be a great choice for a snack or mini-meal. And while the sky is the limit when it comes to creating a smoothie, there are a few things you can do to maximize both nutrition and flavor.

- For optimum flavor, start with high-quality fresh fruit at the peak of ripeness. Always wash fruit before adding it to your smoothie. Also, cutting fruit into either slices or chunks before putting it into the blender will make it easier to blend.

- When blending ice into your smoothie, it's best to start with crushed ice or small ice cubes. If you only have large ice cubes, place them into a strong, self-sealing plastic bag and crush down into smaller pieces with a hammer or the bottom of a heavy metal pan before adding to the mixture to be blended.

- For a thicker smoothie, blend in cubed or pureed frozen fruit. Strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, melons, bananas and peaches are all excellent fruits to freeze ahead for use in smoothies. To freeze fruit, first wash it and cut it into cubes, slices or chunks. Sprinkle light colored fruit, like bananas, with lemon juice to help prevent them from darkening. Place the fruit in a single layer on a cookie sheet and freeze until firm. Once frozen, pop the fruit into self-sealing plastic bags and store in the freezer. You can also puree fresh fruit, freeze it in ice cube trays and then store it in freezer bags.

- Frozen yogurt, sorbets and ice cream can also be used to thicken smoothies. Though delicious additions, expect extra calories as well.

- To lower the fat and calorie content of your smoothie, use skim or soy milk instead of whole milk; plain, nonfat yogurt in place of regular fruit yogurt; frozen yogurt or sorbet rather than ice cream; and unsweetened fruit instead of sweetened frozen fruit. For example, a basic smoothie made with 1 cup fruit yogurt, 1 cup frozen sweetened strawberries and 1 cup ice cream contains 740 calories compared to 290 in a smoothie made with similar amounts of plain low-fat yogurt, unsweetened frozen fruit and fruit sorbet.

- Boost the fiber content of smoothies by leaving the skin on fruit and/or by adding ground flaxseed, wheat germ or wheat bran.

- Increase the calcium content by choosing a milk product as the smoothie's base and/or by mixing in nonfat dry milk powder.

- For added sweetness, blend a touch of honey or maple syrup into the smoothie. Adding half of a very ripe banana will also make the smoothie sweeter.

- For a twist, try using flavored ice cubes. Flavored ice cubes can be made by pouring fruit juice, tea or nectar into ice cube trays and freezing.

- Experiment with different flavorings, such as extracts, cinnamon, nutmeg or cocoa powder. Keep in mind a little goes a long way.

- Avoid adding raw eggs because they can harbor Salmonella Enteritis, a disease-causing bacterium. To get the protein eggs provide without the cholesterol or bacteria, try using pasteurized eggs or a pasteurized egg substitute.

Pagosa Lakes News

PLPOA to host wildfire prevention community forum

By Ming Steen

SUN Columnist

There will be a public wildfire forum at 5:30 p.m. Monday, June 12, open to anyone interested in a discussion of the wildfire situation in the Pagosa area. The meeting will be held at the Pagosa Lakes Clubhouse, 230 Port Avenue.

Chief Warren Grams of the Pagosa Fire Protection District will discuss wildfire control protocols for the district, the current fire danger in the county and what the homeowner can do to prepare for a possible wildfire. The chief will also talk about new fire equipment and capabilities of the fire protection district.

Scott Wagner, of the U.S. Forest Service, will give a 15-minute talk on current and future wildfire mitigation efforts planned in the Turkey Springs area of the San Juan National Forest. The Forest Service currently has plans for reducing wildfire fuels in over 8,000 acres in this area during the next few years that includes both mechanical thinning and the use of prescribed burns.

Dan Ochocki, Colorado State Forest Service, will discuss details about creating defensible space around the home and other steps the homeowner can take to protect family and property.

Larry Lynch, of the Pagosa Lakes Property Owners Association, will present a slide show detailing fuel-thinning work that has been done in the Pagosa Lakes area in large greenbelts near Martinez Canyon and Dutton Draw Association over the past two years. This project utilized a Wildland Urban Interface grant received from the Colorado State Forest Service in 2004 and 2005.

Grams will show a 15-minute video dealing with the Missionary Ridge fire of 2002 to end the presentations.

A short question-and-answer session will follow and we should be done by 7 p.m.

Come to the clubhouse and learn some important information regarding our community and the ever-present threat of devastating wildfires.

For more information, contact Lynch at 731-5635.

Kids' fishing derby

The annual Pagosa Lakes Kids' Fishing Derby is scheduled tomorrow at Hatcher Lake.

The derby is open to anyone 16 and under, and is free. We will start at 9 a.m. on the west side of Hatcher Lake near the boat launch and jetty area off of Hatcher Circle. The derby will last until noon.

At noon, we will provide hot dogs for everyone and will then award prizes to winners in four different age categories.

Every kid will receive a prize, and prizes include new fishing poles, tackle boxes, reels and other fishing-related items.

This is always a fun day for both kids and parents. The fishing is outstanding at Hatcher Lake right now; several hundred pounds of trout were stocked last week in addition to the heavy April stocking.

Make sure to bring fishing poles for the kids, as well as bait, hats and plenty of sunscreen.

Call the Pagosa Lakes Property Owners Association office at 731-5635 for more information.

Garage sale

Please keep in mind that the fifth annual Community Garage Sale for association members is scheduled 9 a.m.-1 p.m. for June 17 at the Pagosa Lakes Recreation Center.

If you are interested in reserving a space, call Gloria at the administration office, 731-5635, Ext. 24. Last year's event drew a record number of participants and a large steady crowd.



Suzanne Hamilton

Suzanne F. Hamilton passed away June 2, 2006, at Pine Ridge Extended Care Facility. She was 95.

Sue was born July 29, 1910, in Chicago, Illinois. She graduated business school and later became the owner of a monument business until retiring. Sue loved to bake and shared with all. She lived happily in McAllen, Texas, for 23 years, enjoying her grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Winton, twin brother Edwin, and great-granddaughter Emma.

Sue is survived by her son Richard (Kathy) of Pagosa Springs, grandchildren Kevin (Andrea) and Emily Hamilton, and great-grandson Sam, all of Dallas, Texas.

There will be no services, as requested.

Marvin V. Nordyke, Sr.

Marvin V. Nordyke, Sr., 75, died Friday, June 2, 2006 at Mercy Regional Medical Center in Durango, Colorado. A graveside service will be held Saturday, June 10, at 11 a.m. at Zion Lutheran Cemetery in Alva, Okla. Cremation will occur at Hood Mortuary Crematory in Durango.

Mr. Nordyke, Sr. was born Dec. 30, 1930, in Alva, Okla., the son of William and Jesse Nordyke. He served in the Army during the Korean Conflict.

He was an employee of Raytheon from 1954 to 1992 and was a member of the Missouri Senate Lutheran Church.

He is survived by Russell Nordyke (son) of Bowling Green, Mo., Marvin Nordyke, Jr. (son) of Pagosa Springs, Martha Pleasent (sister) of Peoria, Ariz., Rose Fox (sister) of Peoria, Della Houpy (sister) of Mesquite, Texas, Josephine Rubarts (sister) of Pottsboro, Texas, and numerous nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Velma Nordyke, his sister, Joann Kubasta, and his brother, Bill Nordyke.

Memorial contributions may be made to American Heart Association, 1280 S. Parker Road, Denver CO 80231

Eufilia Segura

Eufilia Bayola Segura, a lifelong resident of Pagosa Springs, was called by the Lord on June 5, 2006, due to a long battle with heart failure.

Eufilia was born June 13, 1941, in Long Tree, Colo., to Delfin and Isabel Chavez. Eufilia was a beautiful woman inside and out. She did not know hate; she cared about everyone. No one was a stranger in her heart.

Eufilia was very talented; her love for crochet and embroidery was endless. She would make everybody something for their own occasions, and did beautiful work. She dearly loved her grandkids and took great pleasure watching them grow and succeed. Her love for old Spanish music would always put a smile on her face when her son, Sam Maez, would play his guitar and sing for her. She will be terribly missed by all who knew her.

Eufilia was survived by her husband, Joe Ben Segura; three sons, Sam Maez, Johnny Maez, Benji Segura and their families; 12 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren and numerous nephews and nieces. She is preceded in death by one son, Eddie Maez, two brothers, Phileberto and Manuelito, and a sister, Marie Chavez Montoya.

Visitation will be 5-7 p.m., Friday, June 9, at La Quey Funeral Home. Funeral services will be held 10 a.m. Saturday, June 10, at the First Baptist Church of Pagosa Springs, with Rev. Dan Sanders officiating. Burial will follow at the Hilltop Cemetery. A reception will be held in at the Segura home at 235 S. 7th Street, immediately following services.

Margaret Daugaard

A memorial service for Margaret A. Daugaard will be held June 24, 2006, at the Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church. There will be an 11:30 rosary and 12 p.m. memorial service, followed by lunch at the Parish Hall. Service concludes with interment at the Archuleta Daugaard Ranch in Coyote Park.

Walter C. Thomas

Friends of Walter C. Thomas, Jr. are invited to a memorial service, in celebration of his life, to be held at Turkey Creek Ranch, 8286 East U.S. 160, on Sunday, June 11, at 2 p.m. A scattering of the ashes will be held following the ceremony.

In Memoriam

In memory of Billy Lynn, Husband, Father and Friend.

I feel like I've just existed

And now it's been three years.

I don't know how I've lived and breathed

Without you being here.

I know you lived your lifetime

As short as that seems to me,

But the pain in my heart is still so great,

Yet I know your spirit is free.

At times I think I hear you

The thoughts come to my mind.

I struggle for the sound of your voice,

But your voice I cannot find.

Yet you come to me in many ways

So I know you did not die,

You want to tell me that you're close,

And to please stop asking Why.

Our lives on earth seem all too brief,

Or brief as it seems to me.

But where you are is forever,

God calls that Eternity!

We miss you still!

Love Helen and Kami Lynn and Patricia Miller


In Loving Memory of John T. Gurule

Six months have come and gone, there is not one day that we don't miss and love you.


Gone But Not Forgotten

By Kelsey Y. Sheppard

Gone But Not Forgotten

Dedicated To Codi

You were so full of life,

Always smiling and carefree,

Life loved you being a part of it,

And I loved you being a part of me.

You could make anyone laugh,

If they were having a bad day,

No matter how sad I was,

You could take the hurt away.

Nothing could every stop you,

Or even make you fall,

You were ready to take on the world,

Ready to do it all.

But God decided he needed you,

So from this world you left,

But you took a piece of all of us,

Our hearts are what you kept.

Your seat is now empty,

And it's hard not to see your face,

But please always know this,

No one will ever take your place.

You left without a warning,

Not even saying good-bye,

And I can't seem to stop,

Asking the question why?

Nothing will ever be the same,

The halls are empty without your laughter,

But I know you're in Heaven,

Watching over us and looking after.

I didn't see this coming,

It hit me by surprise,

And when you left this world,

A small part of me died.

Your smile could brighten anyone's day,

No matter what they were going through,

And I know everyday for the rest of my life,

I'll be missing you.

Love Always,

Mom, Anita and Chris


 Business News

Chamber News

Bike tours begin an exciting season

By Mary Jo Coulehan

SUN Columnist

Reservoir Hill will come alive a little earlier this year with Folkwest's first production of IndieFest June 10-11.

Fond memories flood back to me of the first years of the Four Corners Folk Festival when attendees could create a conga line under the tent as the headline act closed the show. Now we see throngs of people flocking to Reservoir Hill in the fall and the musical talent also just keeps growing.

My crystal ball foresees the same success for the new June IndieFest, produced by Dan Appenzeller and Crista Munro. This year's guest artists include talent from the Labor Day folk festival such as Ruthie Foster and Eileen Ivers. Female vocalists Terri Hendrix and Eliza Gilkyson will captivate the audience as they have at the Austin City Limits Festival. Saturday and Sunday will be filled with music from groups such as Public Property, Blame Sally, Brave Combo, Salasee, Clumsy Lovers and Gandalf Murphy.

For those businesses that purchased yellow banners last year, it's time to pull them out of the storage closet and hang them out to welcome all the festival attendees. "Welcome Festival Folks" signs should be waving at all the visitors to let them know there is a festival going on. And if you have a marquee, put up a welcome sign as well.

If you have questions, you can call Folkwest at 731-5582. Start the musical season early this year and be on the Hill to initiate another successful festival here in Pagosa Springs.

Bicycle tours

The reason you will read about bicycle tours every week until they arrive in town is there are still so many questions out there about the upcoming events.

We will be sending information to the restaurants so they will be prepared. For locals who would like to go out to eat, may I suggest that you come down to the park and enjoy a wide variety of tasty fare while listening to some free music. We are anticipating the food establishments will be very busy on those nights.

What nights are "those nights?"

Ride the Rockies will arrive in Pagosa Monday, June 19, starting at about 10 a.m. The heavier arrival times should be after noon. There will be a food booth for riders at the high school that will be open until about 4 p.m. However, many riders will hop on the transport van and get to their accommodations, clean up and hit the town.

Ride the Rockies will have numerous vans running east and west of town all day and late into the evening. There will be Ride the Rockies bus stops and they will be marked. We have maps available for bus riders of the routes, the lodging, the restaurants, grocery and convenience stores, banks and laundromats as well as the layout of the high school and Town Park where the entertainment will take place.

Ride the Rockies participants will leave early on the 20th and head to Chama, N.M. Many of the riders do not have accommodations arranged in Chama that night, so hundreds of cyclists will return to Pagosa in the late afternoon. Once again, restaurants should be prepared for dinner as we do not have anything planned for the return riders. On both departure mornings - June 20 and 21 - there will be restaurants open early, around 5 a.m., to accommodate the cyclists for breakfast.

Town Park and the adjacent athletic field will be filled with food booths sponsored by non-profit agencies, a beer garden, a live remote provided by KWUF, and free live music from 3 to 9 p.m. June 19. At that time, Ride the Rockies will announce the Pagosa Springs winner of a $5,000 grant. Ride the Rockies awards a $5,000 grant to an agency that works with youth or children in each community it visits. Application forms were handed out several months ago.

In addition, we are pleased to have New Belgium Brewing (Fat Tire) sponsor the beer for this year's ride. New Belgium was excited to hear we have arranged for recycling at Town Park and the high school. They ask that food vendors try to use paper products, not Styrofoam, except for hot drinks or hot food items. New Belgium will provide the headline band, Mama's Cookin', as the evening's closing entertainment. Our own Hot Strings are also in town and will be there to get the evening rockin'.

Saturday, June 24, will see another group of cyclists pull into town - The Bicycle Tour of Colorado.

This will be a different event for BTC, as it has never started the tour this far from the Front Range and it has never started and ended the tour in the same town. We are the guinea pig this year and we want to show them how well their tour can be run.

BTC attendees will start arriving in Pagosa as early as June 22-23. Most riders will arrive June 24. Again, the Pagosa Springs High School will house registration, camping, showers and bicycle storage. Town Park will play host to another major party from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m., this time with Tommyknocker Brewery from Idaho Springs sponsoring the beer garden. KWUF will be on hand, there will be more food and fun, and live music (we'll announce it officially next week) will fill the downtown area.

The Bike Tour of Colorado will offer lots of free giveaways, so don't miss your opportunity to score some cool stuff. It is important to remember that riders will be arriving all day long. They will be much more relaxed and have more time to visit our town, and have more mobility. Be prepared: no lunch served at the school. The cyclists will leave early June 25 for Creede, after a breakfast provided at the high school, but many of the family and friends will leave later in the day.

After the tour of southwestern Colorado, the BTC returns to Pagosa Springs Saturday, July 1. The cyclists will ride down Put Hill anywhere from 11 a.m. on. From noon to 5 p.m., BTC will have a private barbecue and awards party at the high school and South Pagosa Park. Many riders will stay another day or two. If they stay, they can enjoy a barbecue dinner and dance at the fairgrounds to kick off our Fourth of July activities.

While the amount of work involved for many businesses in town will be taxing, these opportunities come to our community only every four to five years, and never have they come the same year.

We should be grateful for the immediate business these groups will generate, as well as the residual business in months and years to come. To make this event successful, we are in need of a few helping hands. We need help stringing light plastic fencing in Town Park on the June 19 and 24. The work is not hard, there is just a lot of area to cover. We only need an hour or two of your time.

We also need help passing out visitor information at the high school as riders arrive at our information booth. We need volunteers to work in two-hour shifts to direct people to restaurants, lodging or other community establishments. If you can help, we have volunteer T-shirts, snacks and all the water you can drink! Contact us at the Chamber at 264-2360 to sign up. We want to make these events fun for the whole community. Come out and enjoy the festivities June 19 and 24.

Antique cars

If you own cars or trucks built prior to 1959, you'll soon have an opportunity to show off those machines.

With the Great Race coming to town Sunday, July 2, we want to escort the race cars as they come into the community. And those who don't want to drive, can park their vehicles and show them. Give me a call at the Chamber if you would like to display your car. The number of vehicles we have will determine what we do. We need to make a plan, so we would like to have a number by June 23. With this being the 90th anniversary of the opening of Wolf Creek Pass, we want to welcome these racers to Pagosa in grand style.

There are also sponsorship spaces available where you can host a series of race car teams. Even if you're a car enthusiast, you can get up close and personal with the racers. If you own a business, this is a perfect time for you to garner some great advertising and photo ops. What a cool opportunity for your staff members to meet and greet the racers and do something unique over the long Fourth of July holiday. The Chamber provides the food and drink, and a parking slot with your business logo or name. You get to have the fun of entertaining the drivers and you get the publicity. This is another way to get your name out there. Call the Chamber at 264-2360 to reserve your slot. Who knows, you may get to host the winner of the $100,000 grand prize.

Chamber members

I would like to thank all the participants in this year's Pagosa Pride-Hanging Basket Project. Special thanks to Ponderosa Do It Best and Mark and Wanda Crain for all the efforts in this year's hanging basket project as we continued to increase the number ordered. Remember to feed your plants with the fertilizer provided and water them appropriately. We want you and your beautiful baskets to continue to grow with the Chamber all summer long.

As for members, the one new member this week is Sue Liescheidt and Sue's Summer Fun Horse Safety Class. Sue will conduct her classes at 545 Oak Dr. in the Aspen Springs area. The classes start at 10 a.m. every Saturday (except July 1) and last until about 3 p.m. Sue provides a pancake breakfast and participants need to bring a sack lunch and water. Horses are provided and riders must be 8 years of age and older. The cost of the class is $53 per session. If you are a beginning rider, young or old, this could be your ticket to feeling more comfortable around horses and learning all about tack, safety and having fun lessons on the horses. For more information, give Sue a call at 799-6568.

Helping to keep Pagosa women in style, Miss Jean's renews again this year. Moving over to the construction arena, we welcome back Eddie Dale and Dale Construction as well as Clifford Construction.

Welcome back, also, to Copper Coin Discount Liquor.

And with the Fourth of July right around the corner, we welcome the Western Heritage Event Center, dba Red Ryder Roundup. The purpose of the Western Heritage Center is to provide an annual three-day Red Ryder Roundup Rodeo as well as a year-round venue for education and training for youth and equestrian events in Archuleta County. The Western Heritage board, which has 11 members, is dedicated to preserving the history and tradition of the American West. This year, the Heritage Dance will be July 1, starting at 8 p.m. The rodeos will be held July 2 and 3 at 6 p.m. and on July 4 at 2 p.m. This will be a very busy Fourth of July holiday for our community; get out there and enjoy as much as you can!

Don't forget that fire bans are in place. Check with the Forest Service or the Chamber for specific restrictions. Let's protect our natural playgrounds.

And speaking of playgrounds, congratulations to the Friends of the Upper San Juan River and all the participants for making the Celebracion del Rio San Juan successful for another year. Thank you to all who came out to the river clean-up, to Chamber members Canyon R.E.O. and Pagosa Outside for their generous river trips, to Ska Brewing, and all the participating sponsors. This festival, along with all the other events in this community, does not happen because of one person or company; it takes a community.


Cards of Thanks


I would like to give a special thanks to all my family and friends for extending their love to my family in our time of sorrow.

Thank you, Father Esbell, Moses and family, Dennis, flowers were beautiful. To all my wonderful friends, I love you all, so many of you, I would fill the whole paper. Linda Love and Charity Love, you two are always there for me. Thanks.

Enjoy today, tomorrow and tomorrow.

Wanda Christie

Cub Scouts

Cub Scout Pack 807 would like to send a big thank you to all the volunteers who helped run and organize Day Camp 2006. They include Lisa and Bob Scott, Carrie Toth, Jennifer and Jean Lindberg, Al Wylie, Monica Archuleta, Keith Archuleta, Bob Hogrefe, Allan Kuderca, Ellen Griffith, Pat Prentice, Andrea McGinn, Richard Wholf, Tom Greenly, Alicia O'Brien, Laurie Walston, Chastity Manzanares, Alaina Garman, Boy Lucero, Glenn Walsh, Heather Reedy, Patrick O'Brien, John O'Brien, Roger The Astronomy Guy, Don Sullivan, Bob Henley from Chimney Rock, and Gene Hanning. We'd also like to thank our wonderful camp directors, Bill and Lori Manzanares.


The family of Randy Chris Sanchez would like to thank everyone for their cards, food and calls during our time of loss for our brother. There were so many people who did so many different things to help us. These people will always have a special place in our hearts. Loretta Webster, Officer Capistrant, Julian Archuleta and family, Pagosa Springs paramedics, Melvin Chavez, Sheila Silva, Cindy Lobato, La Quey Funeral Home, Dennis Martinez, Deno Pacheco, Anita Gurule, social services, Dennis and Debbie, people of Happy Camper, Randy's boss, Joe, Jody and Rich, Andy and Della Talamante, Joseph and Kerry Espinosa and family, Guzman and Cindy, George and Jen Espinosa and family, Kip Strohecker, Diana at Rio Grande Bank, Frances Martinez, Dee, Father Alvarez, Guadalupana's and please excuse us if we've forgotten anyone else. Randy had a lot of people who loved him and we will all miss him dearly.

The Sanchez family


On behalf of my family and myself, I want to thank all of Pagosa for your generosity. We were overwhelmed by the outpouring of love. Now that we've been on the receiving end of charity, we have an entirely new perspective on this act of kindness. We have been humbled and we are so grateful for those who worked so hard on our behalf. Our list of contributors and well wishers is too long for this article, but you know who you are and God knows as well. It is hard to put into words what I feel. I hope to be swinging my hammer again in the near future and when I'm on my feet I want to pay it forward and share with others who need a helping hand.

Our heartfelt thanks and God bless all of you!

Kirk Zellner and family


We would like to say thank you to our friends and relatives in Pagosa Springs and out-of-state friends and relatives for their prayers and well wishes to Fannie Romero, Lorraine's mother, while she was at Mercy Medical Health Center Feb. 24 to March 10 and when she returned to ICU a week and a-half later.


Frank and Lorraine Martinez




Mr. and Mrs. Allen Steed of Pagosa Springs are happy to announce the engagement and approaching marriage of their daughter, Cana Lynn, to Devon Wayne Brueckner, son of Mr. and Mrs. Darrell Brueckner, also of Pagosa Springs. The couple plan a July wedding after which they will reside in Pagosa Springs.



Local resident Scott Hollenbeck will be ordained to the transitional deaconate of the Episcopal Church USA Saturday, June 10, at St. John's Cathedral in Denver. The Right Reverend Robert O'Neill will officiate. Hollenbeck holds a Master of Divinity degree from the Episcopal Theological Seminary of the Southwest in Austin, Texas.

On June 18, at 10 a.m., Rev. Hollenbeck will preach and celebrate his first Deacon's mass at St. Patrick's Episcopal Church in Pagosa Springs with a reception immediately following. Members of the community are welcome and invited to attend.


Sports Page

Pagosa gymnasts ride high at the Wild West Round Up

By Jennifer Martin

Special to The SUN

Pagosa Gymnasts hog-tied the competition at the Wild West Round Up Competition in Grand Junction last weekend.

Competing for the Level 4 Team were Katie Blue, Madelyn Davey, Megan Davey, Jaqueline Herring, Hannah Rohrich, Zoe Rohrich and Sierra Trout.

Competing for the Optional A Team were Carrie Patterson, Danielle Pajak, Gabrielle Pajak and Toni Stoll.

Satara Vanderbeek competed at Level 5.

Eleven teams and 180 gymnasts participated in the event.

Madelyn Davey brought home a gold medal in the all-around for the Level 4 6-9 age group with a 36.45. She placed first on bars, first on floor and second on beam out of the 19 girls in her division.

Trout placed 13th in the all-around and Hannah Rohrich placed 14th.

Zoe Rohrich placed fifth out of 11 in the 10-year-old group with a 35.20. She also placed third on vault with a 9.50.

Megan Davey placed 10th in the all-around with a 33.35, bettering her highest score this year by over a point.

Herring placed fourth on floor and first on vault with a 9.65. She received a special award for the highest score of the meet with her vault score.

Blue placed 10th in the all-around out of 14 competitors.

The Level 4 group placed fourth in the team competition.

The Optional A girls made a clean sweep in all age divisions.

Stoll placed first in the all-around with a 35.75 in the 8-10 age division. She also placed first on floor and vault and second on beam and bars. Carrie Patterson brought home the silver medal in the all-around, placing first on bars and second on floor out of seven girls.

Gabrielle Pajak took top honors in the 11-year-old group of 11 gymnasts with a 35.75. She placed first on bars and third on vault. Danielle Pajak dominated the 12-13 group, winning vault, bars, floor and the all-around, and placing second on beam.

The Optional A girls were team champions, beating the second-place team by nearly three points.

Vanderbeek was the only Level 5 competitor for Pagosa. In her second meet of the season, she bettered her last meet total by two points. She was eighth in her division of 14 girls and placed fourth on bars and sixth on beam.

The team's last competition will be the state meet July 1.

Pagosa Goldfish bring home the gold

By Joanne Irons

Special to The SUN

The four members of the Pagosa Goldfish who qualified in May for the statewide Special Olympics Summer Games competed in Greeley last Saturday and brought home two gold medals and three silvers.

The four representatives from Pagosa competed against hundreds of other Special Olympians from around the state.

George Stevens, 13, took gold in the 25-yard breaststroke.

Eighteen-year-old Nicholas Saunders brought home two silver medals - one in the 25 freestyle and the other in the 25 backstroke.

Zachary Irons, 12, took gold in the 50 freestyle and the silver in the 25 freestyle, missing gold by one one-hundredth of a second.

The fourth member of the Goldfish, Sydney Poole, 19, just missed out on a medal, finishing fourth in the 25 backstroke. However, she was honored by being the athlete chosen to recite the Special Olympians oath during the impressive opening ceremonies in front of the other athletes, their coaches, families, and supporters from all over Colorado.

Law enforcement representatives from almost all of the counties and municipalities in the state were present in impressive numbers at the opening ceremonies. During April and May thousands of officers throughout the state participated in "Olympic torch runs" in support of Colorado Special Olympics. So, it was appropriate that the Olympic flame was ignited by an officer from the host city of Greeley who brought the torch into Nottingham Stadium at Northern Colorado University, the host of the summer games.

Coach Dale Schwicker, who trained the team, was unable to take part in the event due to a prior commitment. In his place, Jodi Cromwell assumed coaching duties as well as those of chaperone and transportation manager. Jodi, Dale, and especially the Goldfish, are to be commended - not only for their efforts, but also for their accomplishments.

Youth tennis program offered

A six-week summer tennis program for youth ages 6-15 is being offered beginning June 20 at the Fairfield Tennis Center.

Lessons are suited for beginners and kids who have previously played tennis.

Students will receive a basic instructional program based on the United States Tennis Association (USTA) Youth Curriculum. Each session includes two one-hour lessons per week for six weeks. Four hours of additional weekly practice is recommended to reinforce the instruction and enhance learning. Cost of the program is $100 per student, and each class must have a minimum of three participants and not more than six. Enrollment deadline is June 16.

The USTA and Colorado Tennis Association are promoting tennis as a life-long sport that children and adults can enjoy while maintaining a healthy, physical lifestyle.

Racquets can be provided for those who do not have their own equipment.

For additional information or enrollment, visit the tennis pro Dale Schwicker at the Fairfield Pagosa Tennis Center or call him at home in the afternoons or evenings at 731-3363.

Dates set for annual MLS soccer camp

The Pagosa Sting Soccer Club will conduct its 10th annual Major League Soccer Camp Aug. 7-11 at Pagosa Springs High School.

MLS camps cater to players of all ages and soccer abilities through the application of Kidriculum, a child-appropriate curriculum. Program themes include: Play S.A.F.E. (Play, Soccer, Awareness, Fun, Education) for ages 5-11, and A.T.T.A.C.K. (Attitude, Training, Techniques, Awareness, Competition, Knowledge) for ages 12-18.

Campers will receive an evaluation, an MLS gift and a free companion ticket to an MLS game, in addition to an MLS camp shirt and ball.

The Recreational Program, for 5- and 6-year-olds, will run from 9 to 10:30 each morning.

The Intermediate Program, for players 7-11 years of age, runs from 9 to noon.

The Competitive Program is for 12- to 18-year-old players and will run from 5-8 p.m.

The Extended Team Training Program takes place from 9-noon and 5-8 p.m.

Costs are $75 for the Recreational Program, $115 for the Intermediate and Competitive Programs and $160 for the Team Training. Any camper enrolled by June 15 will receive a $10 discount.

The parents of any camper, or adults intending to coach soccer in the fall, are eligible to attend a free coaching clinic during the week.

Registration forms are available at the parks and recreation department in Town Hall.

For more information about the camp, contact Lindsey Kurt-Mason at 731-2458

RAAM coming through Pagosa,volunteers needed

The Race Across America is celebrating it's 25th year with more than 160 bicycle racers riding virtually nonstop from Oceanside, Calif., to Atlantic City, N.J., in less than 10 days.

The route is 3,043 miles long with each racer or team climbing over 108,000 feet.

Austrian adventurer Wolfgang Fasching has won solo RAAM and climbed Mt. Everest. "Everest is more dangerous, but RAAM is much harder," said Fasching.

Spectators this year can meet Jure Robic, Shanna Armstrong, Tinker Juarez, Jock Boyer and Team Beaver Creek-Vail, and cheer on the rest of the racers

Volunteers are needed to man Pagosa's time station.

Anyone interested in helping June 13-15 can call Mike Adamski (970) 731-0166. For more information about the race, go to www.raceacrossamerica.org.

Summer club volleyball program begins

Pirate volleyball players have a number of opportunities this summer to prepare for next fall's season.

A series of optional volleyball club activities are planned and players are encouraged to attend if they wish.

Throughout June, Coach Andy Rice will provide a weight training and conditioning program at the high school for any interested players in grades 9 to 12. The weight room at the school will be open Monday, Wednesday and Friday 8-9:30 a.m.

That same weight room schedule will hold through July.

In July, open gym for all high school players will take place 3-5 p.m. Tuesdays - July 11, 18 and 25 - and Thursdays - July 6, 13, and 27. There will be open gym Aug. 8 and 10.

In August a home high school camp will take place Aug. 1-3 from noon to 2 p.m. each day. A junior high school camp will be held Aug. 9-11 from 8:30-11 a.m,. each day. All returning Pirate varsity players are asked to assist.

High school-age club scrimmages are planned against Durango and Alamosa in early August, with dates and times to be announced.

The cost for the summer club season, including camp, is $30. Checks can be made out to Pagosa Springs Volleyball Club.

The high school practice season begins Aug. 14. Players can expect two-a-day sessions with morning and early afternoon workouts for two weeks. An up-to-date physical is required before a player can practice after Aug. 14.

For further information, contact Coach Rice at 264-1951 or 903-9604.

Pagosa to host annual Pine Cone Classic

By Lynne Allison

Special toThe SUN

The annual Pine Cone Classic Tournament hosted by the Pagosa Springs Golf Club and the Pagosa Women's Golf Association, is scheduled for July 11 and 12.

The tournament is returning to teams of four women who play a best two-ball net and gross score format. The field is limited to 28 four-person teams this year, and the PWGA Pine Cone Classic committee is expecting another great turnout.

Direct inquiries and requests for registration to Audrey Johnson at audrey4125@aol.com, or call her at 731-9811.

Men golfers play low gross, low net format

By Bill Curtiss

Special to The SUN

The Pagosa Springs Men's Golf League played an individual low gross, low net format Wednesday, May 31.

Eighteen players competed and enjoyed the newly-completed tree carvings by Chad Haspels on the sixth hole of the Pinon course. Many thanks to Chad for his impressive work, which greatly enhances the beauty and uniqueness of the Pagosa Springs golf course.

First-place gross was won by Truett Forrest with a score of 75. Second place was captured by Malcom Rodger with a score of 78, and third place went to Jake Mackensen, who lost to Malcom Rodger in a score card playoff.

Carl Carman won first-place net with a score of 67 by way of a score card playoff over Fred Campuzano, who came in second also with a score of 67. Ray Henslee captured third place with a score of 69.

Pagosa Springs Recreation

Mandatory meeting precedes start of adult softball season

By Tom Carosello

SUN Columnist

There is a meeting tonight at 6 p.m. in Town Hall for all of this year's adult softball team managers.

The meeting will last about 45 minutes and will cover topics such as scheduling, game rules and tournament dates. All team managers in men's and coed leagues should attend.

The coed league schedule begins Tuesday, June 13 , at the Pagosa Springs High School sports complex and includes the following:

- Radio Shack vs. Priority One at 5:30 p.m. on Field 1, Snowy River Construction vs. Dionigi's at 6:50 p.m. on Field 1 and Galles Properties vs. Aaron's Fitness at 8 p.m. on Field 1 (Old School has a bye the opening night).

The men's league schedule begins Thursday, June 15 at the sports complex and includes the following:

- Pagosa Falcons vs. Ben Johnson/D.E.S. at 5:30 p.m. on Field 1, American Legion vs. Boss Hogg's at 5:30 p.m. on Field 2 and MBM Construction vs. Four Corners Electronics at 6:50 p.m. on Field 1.

All players should bring their $25 registration on opening night if they have not yet paid for participation in this year's league. Likewise, all managers should bring their $250 team registration fee on opening night unless they have already turned the fee in to the recreation office.

Youth baseball

Picture day for all players and coaches in Mustang division (9- 10 age group) is Wednesday, June 14. Please make arrangements for your child to arrive at least 20 minutes prior to game time on this date.

The Mustang division schedule for the coming week at Pagosa Springs High School baseball complex, Field 1, includes the following:

- Monday, June 12 - No games scheduled.

- Wednesday, June 14 - Angels vs. Rockies at 5:30 p.m. and Yankees vs. White Sox at 7:10 p.m.

The Pinto division (6-8) schedule for the coming week includes:

- Monday, June 12 - No games scheduled.

- Wednesday, June 14 - Orioles vs. A's at 5:30 p.m. on Field 2, Rockies vs. Reds at 5:30 p.m. on Field 3, Yankees vs. Angels at 6:35 p.m. on Field 2 and White Sox vs. Dodgers at 6:35 p.m. on Field 3.

Pinto and Mustang division schedules are available at town hall and are posted weekly on the town Web site, in The SUN and recorded on the sports hotline, 264-6658.

Horseshoes at South Pagosa Park

Horseshoe pitching at South Pagosa Park will continue from 5-7 p.m. each Tuesday through September.

From beginners to experts, everyone is welcome to play and improve.

Now is a good time to come out and sharpen your eye for this year's county fair tournament. If there's enough interest, we'll hold a town tournament in October.

So, remember to attend Tuesday-evening practice and pick-up games at South Pagosa Park's horseshoe courts, just north of the basketball courts. Come when you can.

Sports hotline

General information concerning the Pagosa Springs Recreation Department can be obtained by calling the Pagosa Springs Sports Hotline at 264-6658 or logging on to townofpagosasprings.com and going to the parks and recreation link.

All schedules and upcoming events are updated on a weekly basis.

If you have questions or concerns, or need additional information about any of the Pagosa Springs Recreation Department adult or youth sports programs, call 264-4151 Ext. 232.



Go to the house

"The lady doth protest too much, methinks." Were Shakespeare's Queen here to witness the paper-thin apologetics in this week's Letters to the Editor section, what conclusions would she draw? That the obviously solicited elements and the red herrings comprise a dodge? Wethinks so.

What a shame Commissioner Robin Schiro or her allies saw fit to solicit ill-informed defenses of the noble work done by county officials at state and national meetings - as they "determine policy on a national level," and set their sights on lofty matters. The uninformed quality of the defense serves the commissioner poorly, and draws attention again to a lackluster performance in office.

What a shame the commissioner herself saw fit to write again, proposing a red herring defense of the indefensible.

It puts us in mind of an alternative, reflected in what a Texas-born friend is fond of saying: "Sometimes it's best to take your whuppin' and go to the house." In this case, to absorb legitimate criticism, offer mea culpas and get to the real, day-to-day work of running Archuleta County. Without lame excuses.

The letters from commissioners in other counties reveal the writers were likely not informed of the circumstances of the recent criticism of Commissioner Schiro. Or, perhaps, they serve counties in which all is ideal, with constituents who do not mind when elected leaders skip vitally important county meetings to attend national conventions of ill-defined value to those at home.

Let's not forget the point of the criticism: A commissioner writes a letter to the editor indicating an upcoming county meeting is "urgent," that it is the last chance residents will have to make comments to elected officials who will then make key decisions, that those decisions will "affect Archuleta County for years and perhaps generations to come."

And the "People's Commissioner" does not see fit to attend the meeting.

She notes she was already outvoted. Not the point. The vote should have been explained at the meeting. To the people.

She notes she would be able to listen to public comments on tape, that it is not "humanly possible to attend all of the meetings that somehow pertain to an issue . . ."

Not even those that could affect the county for "years and perhaps generations to come." The "People's Commissioner" was elected to serve, but could not be present to listen to the people.

The "People's Commissioner" notes she pays for her out-of-state county business trips, as if that has anything to do with the point.

She notes she was the "only commissioner who submitted written notes" on the subject of the meeting. As if that excuses her responsibility to make those comments directly to those who elected her.

The bottom line, despite the diversionary apologetics: the "People's Commissioner" was not there for the people.

Now that the door is open, let's add the fact county government has been in turmoil - certainly not all the fault of this particular commissioner. But, it is a matter that demands attention and remediation. The departure of too many dissatisfied, key county employees cannot be dealt with from afar. The awful relations between elected county officials cannot be healed at a distance.

Finally, those who cannot solve problems in their own back yard cannot solve national and state issues.

Unlike the residents of Teller and Pitkin counties "WE THE PEOPLE" put someone in office to deal first, and effectively, with critical situations at home. We have plenty, and it will take a long time to handle them.

And we expect, when officials fail, that they take their whuppin' and go to the house. That they cease with transparent apologetics and get to work.


If they can't, it is time to turn the task over to someone who can.

Karl Isberg


Shari Pierce

90 years ago

Taken from SUN files of June 9, 1916

Gertrude A. Larson made final proof on her fine O'Neal Park homestead Saturday. She deserves unlimited credit for that dynamic energy, hard work and stick-to-it-ive-ness displayed in securing a title to a home. She now has a fine ranch, well improved, with a nice little start in stock, and the lady has sure earned.

John M. Laughlin suffered a serious accident this week when one of the pie bald outlaws at the merry-go-round pitched so furiously that is almost dislodged its fair rider, who was not Mr. Laughlin, but a young lady. The young lady was uninjured, but Mr. Laughlin was severely shaken up in controlling the fractious animal. It is a shame that the town authorities permit these traveling troupes to keep such a dangerous brute.

75 years ago

Taken from SUN files of June 12, 1931

The Murray Filling Station on San Juan Street is again open to the public for the summer season.

Roy L. McCullough wishes to announce to the public that beginning Tuesday, June 16, he will re-open the Holcomb blacksmith shop, and will be ready to handle all blacksmithing, horseshoeing and general repair work of all kinds.

Mrs. Minnie Mote, teacher of the Deer Creek school in the Blanco Basin, was a weekend visitor with Pagosa relatives.

Mrs. Joseph Hersch and sons returned Wednesday from Del Norte, to which place they had accompanied Mrs. Hersch's brother, Early Wiley, who visited here the past week.

50 years ago

Taken from SUN files of June 14, 1956

Tourists are rolling through in ever-increasing numbers and the highways are becoming very crowded. Some of those big cars sure drop off Put Hill when coming into town.

Business notes - A new filling station is to be erected on Put Hill with construction next week. We understand it is a cut-rate station. It is also rumored that there will be one on the east end of town. Pretty soon there will be a filling station for every car. Motels report their business as good. So do restaurants. The alteration in the Pagosa Hotel Lobby are complete. The new addition to Vic's Service, which is nearly as large as the rest of the station, is nearing completion. This addition gives Vic a lot of space for servicing larger trucks and busses.

25 years ago

Taken from SUN files of June 11, 1981

Dr. Mary Fisher Medical Center is the recipient of a two-part, $5,000 grant from Adolph Coors Foundation according to Center physician Dr. Jay Swedburg.

Weather in this area has been decidedly summerlike this past week. Temperatures are climbing, the days have been clear, and the pace of summer activities is increasing. The week's low temperature was 35 degrees recorded Wednesday night at the official weather station. Tuesday, June 9, the temperature climbed to 84 degrees, this year's highest temperature.

The first Red Ryder Roundup was held July 3 and 4, 1949. Fourth of July rodeos were held in Pagosa Springs before that time, but they were not named the Red Ryder Roundup.



More than a fair exchange

By Chuck McGuire

Staff Writer

Pagosa Springs is continually blessed with a bright and affable society of young people, but over the past school year, four foreign exchange students helped raise the bar.

The four attended Pagosa Springs High School as members of the junior class. Olha Kostash from Ukraine, Slava Koshkin of Russia, and Javier Iturriaga of Spain, all 16 years of age, came to the U.S. as part of the Program of Academic Exchange (PAX). Ellen Griffiths, an 18-year-old student from Australia, made her way here via an exchange program administered by Rotary International and Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs.

PAX is a non-profit educational organization that promotes and arranges international student exchange to foster positive development of the world's young people, and to support international peace, friendship and cross-cultural understanding. Participating students are generally bright, energetic young representatives of their native homeland.

As part of its annual PAX at Home project, the program brings between 600 and 800 teenagers to the U.S. from 40 different countries worldwide to attend high school for one academic year. Through a partnership with Future Leaders Exchange (FLEX), many students come from Eurasian nations of the former Soviet Union.

To qualify for the program, students must submit to a comprehensive interview and complete an application demonstrating satisfactory academic performance, good health, the ability to speak English adequate to manage in a U.S. high school, and appropriate levels of maturity and motivation. While talented or gifted students are certainly acceptable, solid students from mixed backgrounds, representing a variety of social and economic levels, are the norm.

Students are typically grouped in clusters of three and placed close to each other to more easily facilitate their management by a PAX community coordinator. Coordinators, meanwhile, interview potential host families to find a male or female student compatible with their particular personalities and interests, and once selected, a single student resides with the family for about 10 months.

While students have their own spending money and health insurance, host families provide for their basic needs, including safety and security, personal sleeping arrangements, a place at the table for sharing family meals, and the love and support all teens require. In return, students are expected to pitch in with household chores, share in everyday family activities, and participate in volunteer services to the benefit of host communities.

The Rotary International program works similarly in selecting participating students, but differs somewhat in size and structure. Each year, 8,000 students from 82 countries travel to foreign lands in half-a-dozen different exchange plans, including long- and short-term. Long-term visits commonly last an academic year, during which high school students stay with three different host families for three months each and go to school. Short-term visitors stay a few weeks to three months, but do not attend school.

Typical of many long-term Rotary plans, those in Pagosa Springs involve one-to-one exchanges, where a local teenager is chosen to visit another country, while a teen from there visits Pagosa Springs. In all plans, a designated Rotarian acts as student councilor, assists in placing the student, and aids in youth management. Rotary also contributes $100 a month toward the child's support.

As ambassadors of their respective homelands, all exchange students offer Americans an inside view of their country, culture, and ideas, while learning a great deal about life in America. Upon returning home, most maintain lasting American friendships, and an understanding of the values and traditions considered precious to all Americans.

When asked about her overall experience, and as an exchange student in Pagosa Springs, Ukraine's Olha Kostash said, "It was very competitive in Ukraine. Nearly 7,300 people applied for the program, and only 300 got to go to the U.S. Among other things, they stressed leadership skills and English speaking ability."

As for her visit to Pagosa, "It was really nice and I'm really glad I got to do it. My host family was very nice, and I enjoyed making friends with new people and going to an American high school."

During her stay, Kostash participated in "Seussical: The Musical," a play put on at Pagosa Springs High School earlier this year. She also competed on the school cross-country team, volunteered in community clean-up activities and visited seniors at the Pine Ridge Extended Care Center. She stayed with the Laydon family.

Russia's Slava Koshkin was a guest of the Greers, who, as he put it, became his "second family." He said, "it was fun, because I had siblings here. I don't have any at home."

Over the course of his nine-months here, Koshkin particularly enjoyed the mountains. "I learned to ski and by the end of the season, I could ski blacks," he said. "We don't have mountains at home. I really liked Chimney Rock, Mesa Verde and Bandelier (National Monument in New Mexico)."

Koshkin said he enjoyed school in Pagosa Springs, though it was quite different from home. "We had fewer classes, but they were much longer and easier," he said. He too, participated in track and "had a main part in the musical ("Seussical")."

Along with Kostash, Koshkin volunteered with clean-up, visits to Pine Ridge seniors, and walking animals at the Humane Society shelter. In fact, in light of his shelter experiences, and a resulting fondness for cats, the Greer family adopted one during his visit.

While Koshkin discovered the joys of skiing Wolf Creek last winter, Javier Iturriaga found Colorado snow more to his liking than that of the mountains of his native Spain. Apparently, the mountains are much smaller there, and they're three hours from home. Consequently, as a snowboarder visiting Pagosa Springs for nine months, Iturriaga found himself shredding the slopes of Wolf Creek at every opportunity.

During the warmer months, he has enjoyed hiking and exploring some of the southern San Juan's cold and crystalline rivers and streams. Meanwhile, a neighbor has organized a recreational soccer league and, until his return home later this month, Iturriaga plays as often as possible.

"Colorado is beautiful," he said. "It's really nice, and I really like the people. I am staying with a nice family (the Appenzellers) and they are very helpful. I'm really happy I came."

When asked about the school year in Pagosa Springs, Iturriaga said it was notably easier than in Spain. "I got good grades here, but not as good in Spain. The teachers here are nicer and very helpful. In Spain, they don't care as much."

Ellen Griffiths arrived in January and has attended just one semester at Pagosa Springs High, but she too believes school is easier here than at home in Australia. Of course, at 18, she was a senior down under, where seasons are opposite and schedules differ. Here in Pagosa, she was enrolled in junior-level classes.

"My senior year at home was hard," she exclaimed. "It's definitely easier here as a junior. My classes here are extra, and I'll be finishing in August."

Griffiths described her school experience in Pagosa Springs as "great" so far. "I went to an all-girls school in Australia, and it's fun meeting guys. It's really great meeting everyone here."

While visiting the U.S., Griffiths hoped to play an active roll in sports, with a particular eye on girl's varsity basketball. But, as an accomplished player back home, her four years of sports eligibility were exhausted before ever making the trip. Therefore, she participated in the only way she could - as manager for the girl's varsity team.

"It's too bad," said Jan Pitcher, coordinator for the Rotary Club exchange program. "I've heard she's a heck of a basketball player."

But, in the few months following her arrival here, Griffiths did find another competitive outlet on the slopes of Wolf Creek. Over the course of a few lessons, she quickly picked up skiing and fell in love with the sport.

"I love skiing, and I love the mountains here," she said. "The mountains back home are much smaller, with the highest one being about the same elevation as Pagosa Springs."

Aside from the timing attributed to seasonal differences, Griffiths' exchange program differs from the others in structure. Having arrived in January, she will remain in the U.S. for 12 months, and will stay with four different host families. By early May, she had just moved from her first to her second family environment, and was still adjusting to the change.

"I have an older brother at home, but so far, I've been the oldest (child) here," she said. "It takes a little getting used to, and it's a little hard changing families so soon, but the people have been wonderful, so far."

Later this summer, Griffiths is looking forward to a month-long bus trip across the U.S., which will include "lots of hiking and camping."

Just as Pitcher oversees the Rotary Club exchange program, and has for 12 years, Natasha Galston is the community coordinator for the PAX plan. Having served in that capacity for six years, she has students in Pagosa Springs, Durango, Bayfield and Ignacio, and many are from the former Soviet Union. Galston is, herself, a former exchange student, and is originally from St. Petersburg, Russia. She has been in the U.S. for 16 years.

The school year has ended and Kostash and Koshkin have now gone home. Iturriaga will leave soon and, of course, Griffiths will eventually go too. In a matter of time, another group of bright young ambassadors will grace the halls of Pagosa Springs High, and they, too, will touch the hearts and minds of all who meet them.

And, if history is any indication, they will feel right at home among Pagosa's young people.


Pagosa's Past

Jicarilla Apache history: Two sides to the story

By John Motter

We've been presenting an account of an 1849 Jicarilla Apache raid on an Anglo wagon train near Wagon Mound, New Mexico.

Our first account was dictated by Kit Carson, one of the scouts who ran down the offending Apaches.

Today's account is written by Veronica Velarde Tiller in her history of the Jicarilla titled "The Jicarilla Apache, A History 1846-1970." Tiller is a Jicarilla Ph.D. and an expert on research in Indian affairs. The second edition of her book remains in print. Tiller's version differs markedly from that of Kit.

"The Jicarilla version of the affair told to Greiner by Chacon (a Jicarilla leader) in 1852 was that the Utes and Apaches had approached the White party as friends, but were driven away. Then the fight commenced. Mrs. White and her daughter were carried away to the Red River and held until the troop came. Chacon said that she had been given good care and that if the Americans had sent for her instead of attacking the camp, she would have been returned. He confirmed that her daughter might have been killed, as he had not heard of her since.

"The raid on the White party received wide press coverage, which reinforced the Jicarilla's bad reputation and created both a feeling of uneasiness throughout northern New Mexico and a demand for revenge. The people were certain that there was a general conspiracy among the wild tribes to attack them, especially since it appeared that the Indians were well armed and far more familiar with the country than the military, who had been unsuccessful in their attempts to bring the Indians to terms."

The Jicarilla continued to rail in the vicinity of the Maxwell Land Grant throughout the spring of 1850, according to Tiller. The Maxwell Land Grant constituted the core of the original Jicarilla homeland. The grant was given by the Mexican government without a hint of asking permission from the Jicarilla or of offering to pay them.

Between 1821 and 1846, the Mexican government awarded eight private grants and five town grants. Included among the town grants were Las Vegas, Anton Chico and Mora. All were taken from Jicarilla lands without the Indian's knowledge or permission, according to Tiller. A 1.7 million acre grant in northeastern New Mexico was made to Carlos Beaubien and Guadalupe Miranda. This pair sold the grant to Lucien B. Maxwell in 1847. Those first owners allowed the Jicarilla to live on the land as they had in times past. In truth, they didn't have the power to stop them.

And so the Jicarilla, threatened with the loss of land and livelihood, were involved in a large number of conflicts with the new settlers of the land. On April 5, 1850, Maxwell's herders were harassed by a band of Jicarilla. About a month later, the results were more serious. A combined Jicarilla-Ute war party killed 11 men on an eastbound wagon train near Wagon Mound. The mail carried by the wagon train was scattered over two miles, indicating a running battle. The remains of eight bodies were scattered about, all eaten by wolves except for three bodies in wagons.

The army's answer was to send Major Grier with a force of 78 men to chastise the Jicarilla. Grier left the Rayado Post south of Cimarron moving toward the Cimarron River. Two days later, they chanced upon and killed a small band of Apaches, while at the same time taking their horses. The Grier expedition covered some 200 miles and accomplished one more incident similar to the incident just described.

Because of Indian unrest and citizen pressure, the Army established Fort Union at the juncture of the Mountain and Cimarron branches of the Santa Fe Trail. In 1852, Cantonment Burgwin was built 10 miles south of Taos and Fort Massachusetts at the foot of Blanco Peak in the San Luis Valley of Colorado. Fort Massachusetts was soon moved a short distance to a more defensible position and the name changed to Fort Garland.

More next week on early Anglo/Jicarilla Apache military conflicts.

Pagosa Sky Watch

Scorpius rules the summer sky

By James Robinson

Staff Writer

The following sun and moon data is provided by the United States Naval Observatory.

Sunrise: 5:47 a.m.

Sunset: 8:27 p.m.

Moonrise: 5:44 p.m.

Moonset: 3:52 a.m. June 9.

Moon phase: The moon is waxing gibbous with 90 percent of the visible disk illuminated. The full moon is June 11 at 12:03 p.m. Mountain Daylight Time.

With the official first day of summer rapidly approaching, Scorpius is moving into a position of prominence in the southern sky.

For skywatchers intent on exploring Scorpius and its environs this weekend, the full moon will serve as a useful guide as it makes a four-day passage through the constellation. However, despite its advantages as a landmark, the bright moon may obscure all but Scorpius' most prominent stars, although stargazers who venture outdoors tonight may have the best chance of enjoying all the constellation has to offer.

According to the mythology, Scorpius was Orion's lethal, arachnid nemesis, and the story of their battle and perpetual chase plays itself out every season with the setting of Orion in late winter followed by the rising of Scorpius in early summer. And while Orion is considered the king of winter constellations, Scorpius rules the summer, and the two never share the night sky.

For winter stargazers, Orion does appear truly regal - the hunter is often seen soaring high overhead, wielding his club and shield - whereas the scorpion rules his season much differently. If Orion soars, then Scorpius scuttles, and for northern hemisphere viewers, the scorpion is seen scurrying barely above the southern horizon throughout the duration of the season.

True to form, and beginning this evening at about 11 p.m., the entire shape of Scorpius will appear next to the moon and barely above the southern horizon. Depending on the amount of moonlight, stargazers may note Scorpius lies in a particularly rich region of the Milky Way, and the area is a treasure trove of objects easily viewed with a small telescope. For those viewing with the naked eye, there is still plenty to see.

Facing due south, first locate the nearly full moon. Just above and to the right of our lunar companion lies one of the brightest objects in our night sky - the dazzling planet, Jupiter. Those with telescopes might want to scan the area around the jovian giant for bright pinpoints of light marking the planet's larger moons.

From our own moon, and peering slightly to its left, lies the bright, burnt-orange star Antares, the alpha star marking the heart of the constellation. Antares is a red supergiant 400 times the diameter of the sun, and is a semi-regular variable, fluctuating between magnitudes of 0.9 and 1.2 during a period of roughly five years. Those with telescopes might attempt resolving Antares' magnitude 5.4 blue companion, although, moonlight might make the endeavor difficult.

From Antares, moving up and to the right, the constellation makes a T-shape, which depicts the scorpion's head and claws.

At the top of the " T", and directly in line with Antares is delta Scorpii, or Dschubba, meaning "forehead." Dschubba is a blue-white, magnitude 1.7 star.

From Dschubba, and moving to the terminus of the left-most arm of the "T," lies beta Scorpii, or Graffias, meaning "claws." Graffias is not a single star, but an unrelated pair of stars of magnitudes 2.6 and 4.9. The pair is generally easy to discern even in small telescopes, although moonlight may make viewing the pair difficult.

Moving to the right terminus of the T-shape, star gazers will find Pi Scorpii. Pi Scorpii, together with Dschubba and Graffias form an asterism called the "Crown of the Scorpion."

From the crown, and going back down the creature's torso past Antares, the constellation extends into a long, distinct J-shape, much like a scorpion's curved stinger. Scorpius is one of the few constellations that truly resembles its namesake.

At the hook-shaped tip of the stinger lies two stars - the magnitude 1.6, blue-white star, lambda Scorpii, also known as Shaula, meaning "sting" - while directly to the right of Shaula lies magnitude 2.7 Lesath. Although from Earth, the two stars might appear as binary companions, however, they are not. In fact, observations indicate each inhabit their own realm of space and lie 150 light years apart.

In the region around Shaula and Lesath, stargazers equipped with binoculars or telescopes will discover a number of double stars and open clusters. However, those viewing with telescopes should not limit their observations just to the scorpion's tail. In fact, the region between Antares and the "Crown of the Scorpion" is also home to a number of double stars and globular clusters. A star chart will prove invaluable for stargazers wanting to make the most of their extra-Scorpius explorations.

As the weekend progresses, the moon will inch ever closer to Scorpius, and on June 9, will appear directly to the right of Dschubba and Pi Scorpii in the scorpion's crown.

By Saturday, look for the moon just below and to the left of Antares. And by Sunday, June 11, the eve of the full moon, the moon will have progressed farther southward, moving to the left, and just above the scorpion's hooked tail.

Skywatchers may note that Sunday's full moon will be hovering quite low on the horizon, and in fact, the moon is at its southernmost point in our sky until 2024.



Date High Low Precip
Depth Moisture