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Upcoming June Chimney Rock Archaeological Area events

Chimney Rock Interpretive Association (CRIA) invites community members to come to a special potluck at the Community Center featuring speaker Erin Hegberg on Thursday, June 14, at 6 p.m.

Erin is an archeologist and a Ph.D. candidate in anthropology at the University of New Mexico. She has spent the past year working with Wendy Sutton, Pagosa District archaeologist, and she looks forward to sharing what she has learned on her current project. She’s calling her presentation “Diary of a Bone Digger: Chimney Rock archives and artifact collections 1921-2012.” CRIA will provide coffee, water and soft drinks. Anyone who wants to help with set up come by around 5:30 p.m. — if anyone can stay and help clean and put away the tables, it is much appreciated.

Night sky program

The first Chimney Rock Night Sky Archaeoastronomy Program of the 2012 season will take place on June 17. This program includes a one-hour astronomy lecture at the cabin and provides an excellent opportunity to learn about the visible celestial objects. Following a lecture on naked-eye astronomy of the Ancestral Puebloans, the solar system and the universe, participants will drive to the upper parking lot of the Chimney Rock Archaeological Area for approximately 1.5 hours of night-sky viewing. Telescopes will be available to assist with viewing. The Colo. 151 gate will be open for the Night Sky Program from 6:30 to 6:45pm; the opening program is scheduled from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m.; with viewing from 9 to 10:30 p.m. Reservations are suggested as space is limited or tickets can be purchased at the Visitor Cabin prior to the program: prices are $10 for adults and $5 for children 11 years and younger. The upper parking area is paved and wheelchair accessible, with restroom facilities. Participants in the Night Sky Program are advised to come prepared with binoculars; water, which is also for sale at the cabin; flashlights; blankets and coats. Call 883-5359 from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. daily, for reservations.

First day of summer

Wednesday, June 20, watch the sun rise over the San Juans this first day of summer, and discuss how the ancients may have lived, and why they celebrated the solstice. Summer solstice is the longest day of the year with sunrise occurring the farthest north on the horizon of the entire year. This unique, 2- to 3-hour event begins at the Sun Tower, a place not visited on our regular tours, and concludes at the Stone Basin providing two viewing locations. Reservations required. Ticket purchase, $15, is considered a donation and is non-refundable. The Colo. 151 gate will be open from 5 to 5:05 a.m. Sunrise is at approximately 5:48 a.m. For tickets, call the visitor cabin at 883-5359, from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. daily.

Life at Chimney Rock

Chimney Rock Interpretive Association is proud to present this year’s Life at Chimney Rock — A Festival of Crafts and Culture on Saturday and Sunday, June 30 and July 1 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day.

A major festival attraction is the invitational Indian Market, featuring a variety of quality Native American talent. Family activities and interactive demonstrations of the skills of the ancients will include yucca pounding, rock art, pottery making, corn grinding,  spinning and throwing the hunting spear, known as an atlatl.

The entry to the Festival and Indian Market is free. Guided tours of the site, including the Chacoan Great House Pueblo atop the mesa, will be available at 9:30 a.m., 10:30 a.m., 1 p.m., and 2 p.m. and cost is $10 for adults, $5 for ages 5-11, and free for ages under 5. For more information, call 883-5359, from 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m., or visit our website at

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

All programs are sponsored by Chimney Rock Interpretive Assn., Inc., in partnership with the USDA Forest Service, San Juan National Forest, Pagosa Ranger District. Visit our website at

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