County's valuation up 10.4 percent; higher tax bills seen By John M. Motter
This year's assessed value of real property In Archuleta County is up by 10.4 percent when compared with the previous year, according to figures released from the county assessor's office.
Translated into tax bills, the increase could mean that homeowners, on the average across the county, will have to write a larger check next year in order to pay property taxes. On an individual basis, because of individual circumstances, some tax bills may not increase.
On Jan. 1 of this year, the assessed value of Archuleta County was $174,584,440, a 10.4 percent increase over Jan. 1, 2000, when the assessed value was $158,191,477. Property in Archuleta County and across the state was revalued this year because state law mandates revaluing real property each odd year.
While related to property taxes, appraised and assessed values are not the tax rate. The county tax assessor does not determine tax rates. The assessor appraises the market value of property according to state guidelines, then calculates the assessed value based on formulas provided by the state and in accordance with rules established for each class of property. During August of each year, the assessor notifies each taxing entity within the county of the assessed values within that entity.
Each entity then develops a budget for the following year using assessed values provided by the assessor. Each taxing entity establishes a tax rate within its jurisdiction. Tax rates are determined by the budgetary needs of the entity. Income from taxes is a product of the assessed value multiplied by the tax rate.
Income increases from property taxes, also called ad valorem taxes, are limited by the TABOR Amendment and the Gallagher law. Gallagher generally is the more restrictive of the two, limiting income increases from property taxes to 5.5 percent a year.
Real property is broken into five broad categories for assessment purposes. Each of the categories is further subdivided into classes. The five broad categories are residential, commercial, industrial, agricultural, and natural resources.
Residential property is taxed at 9.15 percent of the actual value. All other properties are taxed at 30 percent of actual value. The actual value times the assessment rate equals the assessed value. The assessed value times the mill levy equals the tax bill. For a taxing entity, the tax levy equals required revenues divided by total assessed values.
Archuleta County contains 17 taxing entities. Taxpayers may live within one or more entities. The total amount of taxes due will be the sum of all of the taxes levied by each taxing entity on property within the entity's boundaries. For example, a taxpayer living within the boundaries of Archuleta County, School District No. 50Jt., the Upper San Juan Hospital District, Upper San Juan Library District, Pagosa Area Sanitation District, and Pagosa Area Fire Protection District, will pay taxes to each of those districts.
Only one tax bill is mailed, and the taxpayer need write only one check to pay all taxes. Property taxes are due Jan. 1 and may be paid in two installments, the first half due by the end of February, the second half due by June 15. Late payment could result in penalties and interest being added to the original tax bill.
With a total mill levy of 33.25 mills this year, School District No. 50Jt. collects by far the largest amount of tax dollars of any entity in the county. The school tax generates more than $5 million a year. School District 50Jt. had an assessed value of $151,357,521 for the Jan. 1, 2000, assessment. That has grown to $167,360,764 as of Jan. 1, 2001.
In the following summary for each taxing entity, last year's assessed value and mill levy is listed first, followed by this year's assessed value. This year's mill levies have not been set.
Alpha-Rock Ridge Metro District&emdash;$3,391,024, 10 mills, $5,268,761; Archuleta County&emdash;$158,191,477, 17.257 mills, $174,584,440; Aspen Springs Metro District&emdash;$8,036,927, 12.04 mills, $11,638,435; Lakeside Hills Metro District&emdash;first year, $87,577; Loma Linda Metro District&emdash;first year, $3,297,464; Pagosa Area Fire District&emdash;$134,261,940, 4.067, $148,177,731; Pagosa Area Water District No. 2&emdash;$57,169,851, 3.099 mills, $58,067,631; Pagosa Area Water and San. District No. 1&emdash;$58,016,354, 7.24 mills, $66,015,255; Pagosa Springs Sanitation District&emdash;$23,074,778, 3.4 mills, $21,573,590; Piedra Park Metro District&emdash;$2,011,304, 6.362 mills, $2,008,829; Southwest Water Conservancy District&emdash;$158,191,327, 0.324 mills, $174,584,440; San Juan River Village Metro District&emdash;$2,219,680, 15.352 mills, $2,571,439; San Juan Water Conservancy District&emdash;$125,682,419, 0.351 mills, $137,516,673; School District No. 10&emdash;$515,220, 39.326 mills, $512,481; School District No. 11&emdash;$6,318,736, 15.96 mills, $6,711,195; School District No. 50&emdash;$151,357,521, 33.25 mills, $167,360,764; Town of Pagosa Springs&emdash;$29,093,256, 1.68 mills, $29,329,481; Upper San Juan Hospital District, $151,357,491, 2.661 mills, $167,347,424; Upper San Juan Library District&emdash;$157,679,257, 1.5 mills, $174,071,379.
During 2000, Colorado voters approved a property tax exemption for certain qualifying senior citizens age 65 and older and spouses who survive those seniors.
Several requirements must be met in order to qualify for the exemption.
Firstly, the senior must be at least 65 years old on Jan. 1 of the year of qualification.
Secondly, The qualifying senior must be the owner of record of the relevant property and must have been the owner of record for at least 10 consecutive years prior to Jan. 1 on the year of the claim.
Thirdly, the qualifying senior must occupy the property as a primary residence and must have done so for at least 10 consecutive years on Jan. 1 of the year the exemption is first claimed.
For those who qualify, 50 percent of the first $200,000 of actual property value is exempted. Instead of the senior paying, Colorado will pay the exempted property tax. The exemption is effective Jan. 1, 2002, and affects property taxes billed for 2003. Owners of multiple residences may only claim one residence.
In order to qualify for the exemption, potential qualifiers must obtain and complete an application form from the county assessor. Two forms are available, a short form for qualifying seniors and a long form for the surviving spouses of qualifying seniors. The application deadline for either form is Jan. 1 of the year for which exemption is requested.
A surviving spouse of a previously qualified individual is someone married to the deceased individual who met each of the requirements on Jan. 1, 2002, or on any Jan. 1 occurring after that date. The surviving spouse must occupy the property as a primary residence and must have done so with the deceased spouse.
The exemption may only be applied for once. If granted, it remains in effect as long as property ownership and occupancy do not change.
For other information concerning this exemption, contact the Archuleta County Assessor.
It's been nearly eight months since the San Juan Hospital District had a full-time district manager. Since March, it's operated under interim director Dick Babillis, a volunteer who also serves as district board chairman.
After former manager Bill Bright left the district, the board advertised the opening, but was forced to put the process on hold when financial shortfalls rocked the 2001 budget. Now, the goal is to have a manager in place by January and 18 resumes are on the table.
"It's a pretty exciting stack of resumes," Babillis said. Over the past several months, the district has advertised the position with the SUN and two industry-specific groups, the special district association and the medical group management association, drawing both local and out-of-state candidates. Babillis said resumes came from as far away as Pennsylvania.
A screening committee, appointed to whittle applicants down to two or three finalists, met for the first time Tuesday.
Babillis said the committee would first trim the number of candidates to five or six semi-finalists and then conduct phone interviews. From there, the list will be cut further. The finalists will be invited to come to Pagosa Springs for face-to-face interviews.
Whoever is chosen will be responsible for interfacing between staff, the elected board, the Dr. Mary Fisher Foundation and the community, as well as long-range planning. The person selected will also be responsible for overseeing the positions of EMS operation manager and hospital administrator, currently Rod Richardson and Laura Rome.
"The design is that Laura and Rod have enough of a grip on the situation that they can do the day-to-day management," Babillis said.
According to the original hiring process, approved by district board vote, the candidates chosen for final interviews will have a chance to meet with the board, district staff and members of the public to allow the selection process to be as open as possible.
The screening committee includes Laura Rome and Dr. Bob Brown, representing the Dr. Mary Fisher Medical Center; Mike Farrell and Carol Curtis, representing EMS; Sue Walan and Patty Tillerson from the district board; and two public at-large members, Bud Brasher, also a member of the Dr. Mary Fisher Foundation, and Dan Aupperle.
Why is it so good?
It is time to take a road trip, to consider some fundamental realities about our lives as Americans and about what allows us to live the way we do. I leave a house which my wife and I own. Private property.
The house is warm, even during the coldest winter nights. I have running water, electricity. There is a refrigerator stocked with food, cabinets full of household items.
I have machines that wash and dry my clothes; a television and a satellite system from which I obtain information and entertainment from around the world.
I own a computer, hooked up to the internet. I am in contact with family, friends and organizations in distant locations.
Before I leave town, I eat breakfast in the company of friends, I cash the check I receive every week from my employer. I work at a newspaper. There are few constraints on what we print, other than those imposed by good sense and several laws founded in civility and fair play. I can think and say anything I want, and express it openly.
No one stops me to ask for a visa or inquire as to my business. I pick up my wife where she works: a public school, open to all. She is paid as well as her male colleagues.
I stop at a gas station on the way out of town. I quibble about the price of the fuel, but there is more available than I can buy.
I stop at the county courthouse to turn in my completed ballot for the Nov. 6 election.
On the road, the highways are in good condition. I'm in a new vehicle; I listen to the radio and a galaxy of opinions opens to me as I drive.
If I am hungry during the drive, there are establishments open to all who can pay and behave. If I want, I can find sustenance at one of myriad grocery stores. Aisles in the stores are filled to capacity with foods and other items. Anything I need. More than I need.
When I arrive at my destination, I check into a hotel. I use a telephone in the comfortable room to call my daughter, long-distance. The call goes through quickly, uninterrupted, unsurveilled.
I attend a high school sporting event. Two of the teams are from religion-based private schools, two from public schools. The young people play their games before a large crowd of fans, no one expecting or wanting ideological trouble.
After the games are over, I have a choice of restaurants, of many cuisines in many price ranges. People at adjacent tables discuss anything and everything they want, without fear of reprisal. The topics include politics, religion, business.
That night, I sleep undisturbed.
It is not an unusual day.
I lead an ordinary, very good life. And so, with few exceptions, do you.
All of us can recite some version of a litany of good fortune. It is a valuable thing to do these days, regularly. And it is wise to consider the source of the fortune.
In our current situation, when we hear the voices of compromise, conciliation and capitulation, we must not forget that everything we have and do is predicated on strength: economic, military, intellectual, moral, spiritual and emotional strength. We should recall that the ease of our life, even the ability to compromise and to be conciliatory, requires this foundation. We've never needed it more than now.
It is strength our ancestors wrested from an oppressor, strength forged in the furnace of wars, hardship and strife, preserved in the face of countless threats.
In times like these, we need to take stock of what we have and what we take for granted. We should reflect on what we want, how we want to be, and nurture the strength, in individuals and nation alike, that will allow us to persevere, to continue to improve our lives and to assist others in the improvement of theirs.
Progress is just around the corner
Sometimes it's hard for Pagosans to distinguish between progress and repetition. Workers are once more tearing down the most recent "old Town Hall".
About 40 years ago the town tore down its old Town Hall. At that time the Town Hall was a wooden structure that was located on the south side of the "Courthouse Curve."
Then, as now, the tearing down of the old Town Hall was considered to be a sign of progress.
The SUN's Sept. 10, 1959, edition reported "It is in a bad state of repair and while it has been shored up some time ago, there is still the danger that it may slide off the bank (of the San Juan River). It is also a very definite fire hazard and an eyesore."
The razing of the former seat of town government was predicated on building a new town hall. Along with the pending demise of the old Town Hall, the Sept. 10, 1959, SUN announced that Butler Steel Building Co. had submitted a bid of $21,156 to erect a 3,150-square-foot building "to be located on the Town Triangle . . . The new structure would house the library, town offices . . . and the fire house."
The town board already had earmarked $15,000 in its reserve funds for constructing a new town hall. With space in the building being specifically designated for the county library, the Pagosa Woman's Civic Club donated $4,500 towards the project.
Work on the new building started that October. The town clerk's office, police department and volunteer fire department opened for business in the new Town Hall on Dec. 31, 1959.
Rather than bemoan the demise of a long-standing fixture, folks apparently weren't concerned. The SUN reported that "With the new building it will be possible to widen the curve in front of the present Town Hall and in the future years the highway could be straightened out to practically eliminate the hazards of that particular corner and also provide a wider area through town."
During the next 15 years, progress started arriving in Pagosa. The growth was such that county voters approved the similarly growing public library to form the Upper San Juan Library District. This started the progression that resulted in the library vacating the old Town Hall in August 1989. The sparkling new Ruby M. Sisson Memorial Library building provided an impressive new look to Pagosa's western entrance to downtown.
Maintaining its longtime tradition of staying abreast of the latest techniques and firefighting procedures, the Pagosa Springs Volunteer Fire Department was the next to acknowledge its need to sever itself from its past. Successfully petitioning to annex into the Pagosa Fire Protection District, the Volunteers and their equipment joined forces with the Fire Protection District. This resulted in the construction of Pagosa Fire Protection District Station No. 4 near the eastern entrance to downtown Pagosa Springs.
It would be another nine years before the latest new Pagosa Springs Town Hall would be built and ready for occupancy at its site on Hot Springs Boulevard, aka Light Plant Road.
So that's how, after 41 years and the tearing down of two "old" Town Halls, the former site known as the "Town Triangle" will once again be used as a town park.
Some folks might question how demolishing two old Town Halls and converting a public park back into a public park is progress, and I can't fault them. But it's such things as the latest demise of Town Hall that makes it impractical for folks to say they "hate to see all the change that's taking place." Instead they ought to be remembering that country western song that lamented ". . . look how far we had to come to get back to where we started from."
Know you are loved and please keep us in your prayers. David
91 years ago
Taken from Pagosa Springs New Era of November 4, 1910
Chas. Schaad this week shipped a dozen barrels of "Schaadweiser" water to different parts of the state. Charley is gradually giving that water a reputation as it is preferred by those who have used it to the famous Manitou water. It is doubtful if any water in any country has given the same results for certain ailments and therefore its popularity is growing.
Running a country newspaper during a political campaign is a good deal like what Sherman said war was.
Thursday morning's passenger train to Pagosa Junction jumped the track, turned over, fell down or something like that when near Dyke, causing quite a wreck. No one was reported hurt but there were a number of people compelled to stay over.
75 years ago
Taken from SUN files of November 12, 1926
At the session of the county commissioners last week, the board unanimously fixed the bond of the incoming treasurer at $100,000, as county funds in the neighborhood of that amount have been on deposit at one time in this county.
The establishment of Chas. Schaad was endangered by destruction by fire Monday evening, when the roof caught fire. Quick action by the volunteers kept the damage confined to the roof, and the flames were soon extinguished.
In the first basketball game of the season tonight at the High School gymnasium, the High School team defeated the Town team in a good game, the score being 16 to 10.
50 years ago
Taken from SUN files of November 9, 1951
The past week Clee Woods completed negotiations for the sale of an original story, "Squaw Man's Son," to Universal Pictures Company. The story makes use of the historical night of the breakout of the Apache Indians in 1885, under the famous chief, Geronimo. It portrays the tragedy of two families caught between the fury of whites and Apaches.
Nearly all business houses will either close or observe holiday hours next Monday as the result of Armistice Day falling on Sunday.
The first rehearsal for the Christmas program, the 'Messiah' will be held this Friday. Everyone, regardless of church denomination, is asked to come and lend their voices in the singing of this beautiful musical program.
25 years ago
Taken from SUN files of November 4, 1976
Town police are investigating two car thefts that took place last Friday night. They say that an individual, or individuals, first took a car from near the post office and then abandoned it on main street. During this time a small youngster was asleep in the back seat and unaware of what was going on. Another vehicle was taken from the same general area and was involved in an accident at the REA office.
Over the nation just under 52% of the eligible voters went to the polls. Here in Archuleta County the percentage was much higher, even respectable. However the sad fact of this election is that over the nation, and in the state, a near 100% turnout could have changed the results of the election, or it could have given the winners a feeling that they honestly and truly represented the majority.
A three-mile sewer line planned east of downtown remains in a holding pattern.
The $700,000 project, to build a trunk sewer and sewer laterals northeast along the eastern edge of the San Juan River, can't be bid until the town receives enough tap fees to close the gap in funding, Jay Harrington, town administrator said. About 18 fees have been paid to date. Before the project can be let for bids, that total must reach above 70.
"We're real close on commitments," Harrington said. Those numbers reach into the low 60s. Now, it's just a matter of collecting the money. When complete, the line will have a capacity of 120 taps.
To cover costs on the bulk of the project, the town has secured a $300,000 Colorado Domestic Wastewater Construction Grant, and $200,000 Water Pollution Control Revolving Loan.
This week, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment released a "finding of no significant impact" on the east sewer line project. This is a preliminary determination and, if upheld, could mean that an Environmental Impact Statement will not be required. A final decision will follow a period of public comment.
Public comments for or against the preliminary "finding of no significant impact" are being accepted, and a final decision will be made after reviewing those comments. However, administrative action must wait at least 30 days after the preliminary finding.
Comments should be directed to: Peggy Galligan, Project Administrator, Water Quality Control Division, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, 222 South 6th Street Room 232, Grand Junction, CO 81501.
Partly cloudy skies should cover Pagosa Country from today through Monday, according to Chris Cuoco, a forecaster for the National Weather Service office in Grand Junction.
"It looks as if you'll have good weather through Veteran's Day," Cuoco said. "Any storms moving in will probably pass north of Colorado. Thursday through Monday will be partly cloudy. High temperatures should be in the upper 40s or low 50s. Low temperatures will be in the mid-to upper 20s."
A moderate storm struck Pagosa Country last week dropping 0.26 inches of icy rain in town and painting elevations above about 10,000 feet white. By early this week, little snow was visible from town, excepting Quartz Ridge and Blackhead Peak on the eastern skyline.
While local residents enjoy almost summer-like conditions, big game hunters here for the third rifle season are receiving little assistance from the weather. Camping is pleasant with little need to tramp around in mud, but the snow needed to persuade elk and deer to congregate at lower elevations has not happened. Fresh snow also helps hunters by recording the presence of game, even providing clues on how recently the presence was in the area.
Meanwhile, winter is just over the horizon for Pagosa Country. The average November snowfall in town is 10.6 inches. During November of 1964, a record 46 inches of snow fell in town. More than 30 inches of snow fell in town during 1984, 1982, 1975, and 1956.
November temperatures can also be cold. November's average monthly mean temperature is 32.5 degrees, just one-half a notch above freezing. During November of 1952, the average monthly mean temperature was a chilly 25.1 degrees.
While the monthly mean minimum November temperature averages 8.5 degrees, the extremes can be much more severe. For example, on the day after Thanksgiving during 1952, the thermometer plunged to a numbing minus 25 degrees.
By way of contrast, the average high temperature last week was 64 degrees, the average low temperature 32 degrees. Highs never dropped below 61 degrees and lows never dropped below 30 degrees.
The Upper San Juan Regional Planning Commission will hold its regular meeting at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 14 in the Archuleta County Commissioners' meeting room in the county courthouse. Public comments are welcomed and encouraged.
The agenda includes:
€ Call to order/roll call
€ Continuance for the Reserve at Pagosa Peak Subdivision - Preliminary Plan and Variance for Cul-de-sacs
This is a review of the Preliminary Plan for the Reserve at Pagosa Peak Subdivision. The proposed Subdivision would be located on a 239-acre parcel, which would be subdivided into 140 single-family parcels of varying sizes.
The property is located at 6101 CR 600 approximately six miles north of the intersection of Hwy. 160 and Country Road 600 (Piedra Road). The property is legally described as the SW 1/4 SE 1/4 and SE 1/4 SW 1/4 of Section 24, that portion northerly of County Road 600 (Piedra Road) in the E 1/2 NW 1/4 and W 1/2 NE 1/4 of Section 25, and a tract of land consisting of 19.5 acres, previously known as The Rendezvous Lot 12 in Section 25, all in Township 36 North, Range 2 1/2 West, N.M.P.M., Archuleta County, Co.
€ Continuance for the McKeown Minor Impact Subdivision - Sketch Plan
This application is to correct an improperly subdivided parcel of land, which is 8.16 acres in size. This process would not change the parcel's boundaries. However, a residence, or other permanent building, could be constructed if the lot would become properly subdivided and legally recorded with the county. The property is located at 4691 East Hwy. 160, and is legally described as NW 1/4 of Section 33, Township 36 North, Range 2 West, N.M.P.M., Archuleta County, Co.
€ Powderhorn Subdivision - Sketch Plan
This is a review of the Sketch Plan for Powderhorn Subdivision. The proposed subdivision contains 41 single-family lots, each approximately 1-acre in size, located on a 49.55-acre parcel bordered by The Ranch Community, Lake Pagosa Park, Twin Creek Village and Lake Forest Estates.
The property is located along the east side of North Pagosa Blvd. between Antelope Avenue and Aspenglow Blvd. The property is legally described as the SE 1/4 SE 1/4 of Section 7, Township 35 North, Range 2 West, N.M.P.M., Archuleta County, Co.
€ Colorado Timber Ridge Subdivision - Phase IV - Preliminary Plan and variance for cul-de-sacs
This is a review of the Preliminary Plan for Colorado Timber Ridge Subdivision Phase IV. The proposed subdivision would consist of 45 lots ranging in size from 1.3 to 7.2 acres with approximately 50.7 acres of open space areas, located on a 180.63-acre parcel.
The property is located on an unsubdivided tract in portions of Township 35 North, Section 27: Portion N 1/2 NW 1/4, SW 1/4 NE 1/4, Portion NW 1/4 SW 1/4 NE 1/4, SW 1/4, NW 1/4 SE 1/4, Section 28: Portion E 1/2 NE 1/4, Range 2 West, N.M.P.M., Archuleta County, Co.
€ Summit View Subdivision - Request for Extension of Deadline
This request is for an extension of time from the Preliminary Plan review to the Final Plat submitted for a 35-acre parcel that the developer is proposing to subdivide into 4 parcels and an additional parcel for open space.
The property is generally located 1 1/2 miles south of the intersection of Hwy 160 and Hwy 84 on the east side of Hwy. 84. The property is legally described as the S 1/2 SE 1/4 of Section 19, and the NW 1/4 NE 1/4 of Section 30, Township 35 North, Range 1 West, N.M.P.M., Archuleta County, Co.
Review of the Nov. 7 Planning Commission minutes
€ Other business that may come before the commission
The Colorado Division of Wildlife is developing a new Strategic Plan to chart its course over the next five years and the agency wants the public's input. The draft is the product of months of thought and discussion on the part of four work groups (each comprised of public and employee members) as well as the collective contributions of the Division and Wildlife Commission leadership.
The Colorado Wildlife Commission agreed earlier this year that the previous plan, which was developed in 1994 and called the Long-Range Plan, needed to be re-evaluated. The Commission asked the Division to come up with a new plan, which will be implemented at the end of this year and remain in effect until 2006.
"The demands on wildlife resources have changed dramatically in the past seven years, as has available funding for the Division," said Division Director Russ George. "The Division has addressed changes as they happen, but a strategic plan would better enable us to establish priorities and would provide a foundation for analysis of policy and regulatory issues that will come up in the future."
The plan will set priorities for allocating Division resources and give guidance on funding, including possibly broadening and diversifying funding sources beyond hunting and fishing licenses and federal grants.
The Division and Commission welcome public feedback on the draft plan.
The plan is available on the Division of Wildlife's homepage at www.wildlife.state.co.us or in hard-copy format. The public is invited to review the draft and submit their comments to: Colorado Division of Wildlife, Attention: Kim Burgess, 6060 Broadway, Denver, CO 80216. The public can also respond via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. The public can also provide testimony at Commission meetings in Pueblo on Nov. 8-9 and in Walden on Dec. 6-7.
The cold days ahead might drive some weather-weary Coloradans indoors, but those who brave the elements will be treated to great wildlife viewing this fall and winter.
Parks and national forest visitation generally drops this time of year, but that does not mean animals have disappeared, too. In fact, in fall and winter many species are drawn to the roads, campsites and other highly visited areas they tend to avoid during normal tourist season.
"Fall is the fat time of year for wildlife viewing," said Bob Hernbrode, chief of the Division of Wildlife's wildlife education section. "Everything gets ready for the coming of winter - coats are thicker, plumage fuller. The animals are in good shape."
"We see more elk now around the mountain base roads than in the summer," said Carol Leasure, manager of Golden Gate Canyon State Park. "They hang out there because there are fewer people." It is also easier to see elk now that the aspen leaves are gone, Leasure said.
In addition to elk, fall and winter bring other high-altitude animals, such as big horn sheep and moose, down to lower elevations. It is also a prime time to see wintering species such as the bald eagle. Bald eagle viewing is perhaps best at the Roaring Judy Hatchery, located on the East River between Gunnison and Crested Butte. As many as 50 bald eagles show up at the hatchery each year to feed during the salmon run.
"Roaring Judy is one of the few places you are guaranteed to see a bald eagle within 15 minutes of trying," said Terry Robinson, wildlife technician for the Division and hatchery supervisor. The eagles will stay as long as the salmon are running, which is generally 1-2 months, he said. Beginning in mid-December, bald eagles also start showing up at Ridgway State Park. The park, located outside of Ouray, also provides winter habitat for elk, deer and even wild turkeys.
"The Elk Ridge campground is a good place to see wild turkeys," said Jeff Riddle, manager of Ridgway State Park. "It's a popular place with campers during the summer. But when the crowds leave, the wildlife comes in." Trough Road, which runs along BLM land south of Kremmling, also provides great raptor viewing in winter. In addition to bald eagles, some uncommon species such as the rough-legged hawk and prairie and peregrine falcons are sometimes seen.
"The waterfowl are also a big draw," said Chuck Cesar, wildlife biologist for the Bureau of Land Management. "Canada geese, mallards and golden-eye ducks and mergansers."
"It's the discovery of the oddballs that makes wildlife viewing fun," said Kevin J. Cook, a Ft. Collins-based naturalist and author who has been teaching and leading tours in Colorado for 25 years.
Cook notes that the drop in temperature brings out species not normally seen in summer months, including unique waterfowl.
"One day there will be 20 mallards and geese, then a cold front comes through and there will be 2,000," Cook said. "It's fun to look through them and see who's there." Some uncommon species to watch for are the greater white-fronted, Ross's and Brant goose.
October through mid-November is prime time to witness the sand hill crane migration, Cook said. Cranes are found just about everywhere in the state, but are especially visible in the eastern plains and San Luis Valley, he said.
The Colorado Division of Wildlife reminds visitors to be considerate of wildlife and ethical about approaching animals.
"Wildlife viewing is not a predatory activity," said Hernbrode. "Try to be as non-threatening as possible. Don't stare, don't stalk and move slowly."
Moose are especially weary of people, said Terry Gimbel, senior ranger at Colorado State Forest State Park and Moose Center.
"Moose are unpredictable," Gimbel said. "If they start watching you, back off. They can charge at any time." There are about 550 moose in the park, which is located 23 miles east of Walden.
Hernbrode suggests wearing muted colors and soft, quiet fabrics. "Wear something that allows you to sit quietly for a long time and still be warm," he said.
The Division provides the following guidelines for viewing wildlife successfully and ethically:
€ Observe from a distance. You know you are too close when the animal looks at you, appears nervous or jumpy and has its ears pointed toward you. If those things happen, sit quietly or move away slowly
€ Move slowly and casually, not directly toward an animal. Don't sneak up on or surprise them. Never chase or follow animals
€ Keep pets at home
€ Give nests a wide berth. Don't "save" baby animals - mom is usually nearby
€ Don't feed animals
€ Use all your senses. Look above and below, use the peripheral. Cup your hands to your ears, close your eyes and keep quiet
€ Go at dusk or dawn.
For more information about where to see wildlife in Colorado, the Division has published two guides, the Colorado Wildlife Viewing Guide ($12.95) and the Guide to Colorado State Wildlife Areas ($29.95). The books are on sale at most Division service centers and can be ordered by phone or through the mail. Call (303) 297-1192 for ordering information.
It's big time musical entertainment under the big top. Buffalo Bill's big top that is.
Students and teachers at Pagosa Springs High School are hard at work preparing "Annie Get Your Gun," the annual musical. This extravaganza by Irving Berlin features a cast of 30, plus dozens more in the orchestra, on stage crews, doing lights, makeup and sound.
"It's going to be a magical performance," senior Nora Fabris, who plays Annie, said. "It's 100 percent quality."
For weeks, the cast and orchestra have spent hours at home and at school practicing lines, blocking, music and choreography. Sets must be built, costumes sewn, and instruments tuned all while working around student's schedules and open times in the auditorium.
"We've worked four Saturdays where kids come in and build sets," director Lisa Hartley said. "Some people in the community have also come and that's really helped."
As pieces of the whole - dancing, sets, costumes, sewn in Hartley's off hours or borrowed from community groups, and choreography - fall into place they are added to practice, sometimes in crude form.
"What's that?" a cast member asked at practice early in October, staring at a clump of chicken wire arranged neatly on stage with some other props.
"It's a bush, use your imagination," another replied immediately.
It all started in September. Auditions were held, and after a week's delay waiting for scripts to be delivered from New York City, two-hour practices began.
At first, the cast gathered three afternoons a week. Practice was bumped up to four afternoons a week in October, and might hit five before curtain-time, Hartley said. They began by breaking down the four scenes in Act One, working that, before taking on four shorter scenes in Act Two.
To bring the whole thing together, organizing both orchestra and cast, Hartley is aided by Assistant Director Kathy Isberg, and accompanist Melinda Baum.
"Some kids might be working on a musical number, while I work with others on lines and blocking, getting kids oriented on stage and on the sets," Hartley said. Meanwhile, the orchestra, students Joetta Martinez, flute; Danielle Jaramillo, clarinet; Shalaina Hamblin, clarinet; Hank Willis, trumpet; Travis Reid, trombone; Carlos Padilla, trombone, and Jessie Morris, drummer, along with a couple community-members, might be in a different room working through particularly tough spots in the score.
As much as possible is in the hands of the students.
"Clay Pruitt and Cindy Neder are working on choreography," Hartley said. "They'll be teaching that to the cast." Pruitt is playing Frank Butler Jr. and Neder is cast as Dolly, Frank's assistant.
"I think we know what we are capable of doing," Pruitt said in an interview with some of the principles.
"Yet it looks classy enough," Neder said. "It's really nice to see our ideas up there. We give up nights and nights on this and it's great to see it coming together."
"We tried to keep it Broadway looking," Pruitt added.
Fabris is preparing much of her own choreography as well, focusing on scenes where she must be on stage alone.
"It's a lot more natural if she does it herself," Hartley said.
And when it all comes together, that's when the magic begins.
"Working the music, hearing all the parts come together, the instrumentalists finally getting that lick that's so hard, the kids really getting it - that's the best part," Hartley said.
"It's a lot of work, but it's fun, too," Fabris added. Despite the fact that she's performed in several musicals, this is her largest role and the last of her high school career, making it all the more special.
"I love acting," she said "I love the fact that you can be something else for a moment in time."
Whether the students are like Fabris, whose plans include film school, or like cast member Sara Smith, a grade schooler who's thrilled to be in the musical "because I get to dog around my brother in the first act," Hartley is happy to see more and more students enjoying theater.
"Whether they like to be a performer, or work back stage, it gives them an outlet that makes them feel like they're part of something," Hartley said. "Each year there are more people who try out. Even the technical kids are starting to come to me when the school year starts."
Curtains will open on "Annie Get Your Gun" at 7 p.m. all three nights in the high school auditorium. Advance tickets, $6 for adults and $4 for children, are on sale now at Moonlight Books, The Plaid Pony, and the high school office. Tickets will also be available at the door. A list of cast members can be found printed in this week's Preview.
The Lakes, Fisheries and Parks Committee of Pagosa Lakes, as well as other property owners, is researching the possibility of formation of a Special Parks and Recreation District.
A town meeting, open to all interested property owners, will be held at 7 p.m. Nov. 15 in the Pagosa Lakes Clubhouse for open discussion of the proposed district.
A district would be formed for the purpose of funding the acquisition of park and open space properties and for the construction of trails and active and passive park and recreation areas for Pagosa Lakes residents.
The projects to be funded would include those in the long-range Parks, Trails, Open Space and Recreation Master plan adopted last year for Pagosa Lakes. Other topics to be considered are possible inclusion of Pagosa Lakes Recreation Center and the four existing lakes within the proposed district.
The committee is also looking for volunteers who would like to assist and support the effort. The formation of such a district requires a lot of community support and effort and anyone who would like to become involved or who has questions or concerns about the proposed district is urged to attend the meeting. A good turnout, said the committee, will be critical to moving forward with district formation plans.
The PLPOA board of directors will discuss the proposal as an agenda item at the regular November meeting at 7 p.m. tonight in the clubhouse.
A short but multi-faceted program on the banks of the San Juan River at dusk Saturday focused participants' attention on those who have gone before them, those they revere now and those who will mourn them when they are gone.
With a group of less than three dozen in attendance, Hospice of Mercy welcomed bulb planters in the memorial garden adjacent to Chamber of Commerce building, heard some participants tell of those they were mourning by taking part, and heard a pastoral question of what makes a saint.
But by far the most touching part of the ceremony was the candle-lighting and parade to a tree in the garden where the lighted tapirs were affixed to branches to create a tree of light.
Children and adults alike then locked hands and formed a circle of faith, the trees' candles glowing in the background as sunset shrouded the downtown scene with increasing shadows.
An unusual cloud formation just at sunset made it appear there were two suns setting in the west, about 30 degrees apart. One, obviously, was a crystalline reflection of the real thing.
The group joined in an a capella rendition of "God Bless America", led by Don Weller, an event which stopped passersby on Pagosa Street on the other side of the river.
Rev. Donald A. Ford of Community United Methodist Church asked each person there to consider what the name saint means to them. It may be a biblical person, an ancestor being mourned, or someone like those in hospice service who cared for a loved one at the end.
And he asked them to consider what survivors will think of them when they are gone, asking "Will you be their saints?"
Formed into a circle of faith, they stood in reverent silence after a program based on Darcie Sims' admonition, "May love be what you remember most."
The program was emceed by Gaella ElanRah, hospice social worker.
In a time of unrest, national unity has been espoused as the means of keeping this nation strong and open to all.
Such unity can only begin in community or even neighborhood gatherings such as the hospice ceremony. People coming together locally seed such feelings on statewide, regional and national bases, no matter how few or great are their number.
It looks as if I don't know the strength of my own perception.
My last letter to the SUN brought out Commissioner Crabtree's true colors.
He finally cracked. He told me that If I ever wrote something like that again, it'd be war with me. His one-way tirade was laced with intimidation and he even had to drag my deceased mother into it.
A few years ago he had potential, but something certainly happened since then. Somebody or something got to him.
Judging from his reaction to my letter he is definitely hiding something.
I did a good job of extracting the truth out of him.
No public official has ever told me to shut up. He handled me absolutely totally wrong. He also handled himself the same way.
Just so the people would know
The heroes of Sept. 11 give all of us courage, they give our military courage - and our military, in turn, return courage to us again, in an unbroken connection of the American spirit that completely baffles the left.
Which is why the flag first raised in the rubble by New York City firefighters is now on deck of the USS Roosevelt currently operating in harm's way - chosen because, they said, it represents the "courage and spirit of all Americans." It is a newer flag, but the same courage, and the same spirit of our fathers at Iwo Jima, and of their fathers before them, proudly hailing the broad stripes and bright stars. Indeed, the World War II generation proved its mettle. Now it is time for a new generation or two to step forward and be heard.
American can no longer afford the luxuries of boredom, of cynicism, of political apathy, of complaints that "nothing I do matters, my vote doesn't count, why bother, why even try?" Such weak gripes are a slap in the face to all those veterans who, when duty called, rose to the occasion and answered.
It is also why the words "Let's roll!" - uttered by U.S. Navy veteran Todd Beamer as he and the heroes of Flight 93 went to take on the terrorists - will forever be an American battle cry.
Even though we lost much on Sept. 11, much remains. The beauty of the flag, "God Bless America," bravery, gratitude, love. Freedom. Those priceless things are what we started with, and they are what give us the resolve to do what has to be done.
You can choose one of two ways. You can be a victim, sitting around waiting for things to be made right. Or you can decide that making things right is up to you - that this country is what it is because of you.
Your country needs you. If not you, who? If not now, when? And remember to thank a veteran on Nov. 11. Let's roll.
P.S. A Happy 226th Birthday Nov. 10 to the U.S. Navy's naval infantry. Again, its time to rumble Marines! God speed.
Senior Center name
As a former Senior Center president ('88 or '89?) I feel compelled to suggest the only appropriate name change to: Dawnie's Day Care
She has nurtured us for all these many years with nothing but success.
Since 1995, Pagosa Springs and the Faith Christian Eagles have met each other in a series of hotly-contested volleyball matches, all at the state tournament.
Saturday was the first time the two teams met in regional competition as they clashed in the opening match of Region A competition at Colorado Springs Christian High School.
Pagosa Springs 15-13, 15-13.
The teams slugged it out, with both games hanging in the balance, and the win sitting there for whoever would take it.
For whoever could keep their composure through the ebb and flow of the contest.
It was the Lady Pirates.
Faith took the lead in the first game, going ahead 2-0, but with a score on a tip by Katie Lancing and a hitting error by the Eagles, Pagosa was back in the mix. From that point on, the teams traded the lead.
Faith was up 8-3, but the Ladies fought back to 7-8.
Faith went out front 11-7 but the Ladies refused to panic. Pagosa pinned a comeback on a kill from the outside by Shannon Walkup to tie the game 11-11. Faith Christian worked a 13-11 advantage and appeared to be ready to close out the game.
It was not to be: three Eagle miscues gave up the points needed to put the Ladies on the cusp of the victory, 14-13, and a dramatic tandem block by Lancing and Ashley Gronewoller ended the game in Pagosa's favor.
It was a game characterized by dramatic swings in momentum, but Pagosa never succumbed to the trend when the Eagles moved ahead. The game featured some of the most dramatic volleys of the past few seasons and spectators knew they were in for a treat during the second game.
They were not disappointed.
Pagosa cruised to a 3-0 lead before the Eagles put a point on the board. The teams struggled against each other, working to find weaknesses in the defenses, trading the serve through a series of sideouts. Pagosa got points on kills by Gronewoller and Nicole Buckley and were handed points by the Eagles to go ahead 6-4. Buckley crushed a kill from outside and Lancing put a perfect dink to the hole in the center of the Faith defense. Pagosa was up 8-4.
Lancing scored again with a stuff block as the Ladies made a run to an 11-8 advantage, but Faith was not through.
The Eagles closed the gap to trail 11-10 but Lancing scored with a sweep off the pass and Faith gave the Ladies a 13-10 lead with a hitting error in the face of an imposing Lady Pirate blocking scheme.
The Eagles struggled through three sideouts without giving up a point and managed a point on a Lady hitting error. Two more sideouts and an Eagle kill tied the score 13-13.
Again, it was anyone's game.
It would be Pagosa's.
Lancing took back the serve with a kill off the block. Then Lancing nailed a back-set from Amy Young on the weak side to give her team a 14-13 lead.
The game and match ended in familiar fashion with Lancing and Gronewoller laying a bruising tandem block on a Faith hitter.
"It was fun," said Coach Penné Hamilton about the game against a team she loves to beat. "It's great to be their worst nightmare. I thought everything we worked on this week was apparent. The girls performed well; they made their adjustments like we wanted. I wanted to see coverage on the dump and the quick-set; we hadn't seen much of either this season and we were pretty sure we'd see it at regionals. We defended these things like we wanted.
"The offense worked very well," said Hamilton. "The girls were finding the holes and they were power hitting."
With the win in the opening game of the tournament, Pagosa was well along the road to taking the regional title. Faith Christian was well along the road to being eliminated and missing the state tournament for the first time in several years.
Pagosa Spgs. def. Faith Christian 15-13, 15-13
Kills: Lancing 9, Buckley 8
Aces: Lancing, Bliss 1
Digs: Buckley 13, Gronewoller, Lancing 6
Blocks: Gronewoller, Lancing 2
Before Saturday, Pagosa Springs and Cedaredge had never met in volleyball competition.
The Lady Pirates and the Bruins clashed at the Region A tournament at Colorado Springs and, though the road was rocky, at the end of the trip the Lady Pirates logged a win over the Bruins, 15-9, 12-15, 15-5.
Cedaredge entered the fray with a gaudy record, undefeated in the regular season and losing one game at the district tournament. Despite the record, the Bruins were a mystery at the beginning of the regional battles and, for two-thirds of the match with Pagosa, the team from the central Western Slope gave the Ladies something to worry about.
It took a while for the Ladies to get the engine revved up to max speed - to the middle of the third game of the match, to be precise. But, even at half speed, they were able to overcome an 8-3 deficit in the first game to eke out the win.
Katie Lancing ended the Bruin scoring spree with a perfectly placed dump over the blockers' hands. Nicole Buckley stuffed a Bruin over-pass for a point and Lori Walkup and Ashley Gronewoller teamed for a tandem stuff block to put another point on the Pagosa side of the scoreboard. The Bruins surrendered a point with a ball hit out of bounds and the race was on. Very quickly, Pagosa had gone from a five-point deficit to an 11-8 lead.
Cedaredge managed one more point, in the midst of a series of sideouts, Katie Bliss scored with a kill, the Bruins contributed two points with hitting errors, Gronewoller nailed a quick set in the middle, then finished off the Bruins with a stuff block.
Cedaredge came back strong at the outset of the second game, building a 9-3 lead, but earning only one of the nine points.
Gronewoller accounted for three quick Pagosa points: with a kill from outside, a kill of a quick-set to the middle and a kill of an errant Bruin pass.
With the Ladies trailing 6-9, Shannon Walkup hit an ace serve; Cedaredge committed a passing error and again Walkup hit an ace. With a Bruin hitting error, Pagosa had captured the lead, 10-9.
It was a lead the Ladies could not hold. The Bruins received four unearned points, gave up two points with mistakes of their own, then got a cross-court kill to secure the 15-12 win.
During the opening moments of the final game, it seemed the Bruins would keep their momentum. Again, benefitting from the generosity of the ladies, Cedaredge went out to a 5-1 lead.
At that point, the Ladies woke up and played their brand of volleyball. Bliss scored with a kill and the Pagosa attack forced the Bruins to surrender three points and the tie with mistakes. Following several sideouts and a single Bruin point, Gronewoller started a run with a point on a stuff block. In rapid succession, Pagosa scored with a stuff block of a pass by Shannon Walkup, two kills by Gronewoller, two aces from Lancing (one a perfect soft serve at the feet of the Bruin backrow), a crusher of a kill of a Bruin over-pass by Gronewoller, and another soft ace inside the ten-foot line by Lancing. The Ladies had their shellshocked opponents on the ropes, 14-6.
Cedaredge got the ball back but, in a lightning stroke, Gronewoller returned serve to the Ladies with a kill off a quick-set - a play she would work throughout the rest of the tournament.
The game and match ended with an ace by Shannon Walkup.
Coach Penné Hamilton commented on the Bruins, giving the team credit for a good effort against her battle-tested charges.
"Cedaredge was athletic, and the players hustled," she said. "They managed to put some blocks up on us. We were up and down against them, and we let them back in but, when it counted, you could tell we've been there before. When it counted, in that third game, the kids stepped it up, their experience showed, and they took over."
Kills: Gronewoller 14, Buckley 8
Aces: S. Walkup, Lancing 3
Digs: Buckley 13, S. Walkup 9
Assists: Lancing 14, Young 10
Blocks: L. Walkup, Bliss, Gronewoller 2
Last year, the Colorado Springs Christian Lions traveled to Pagosa Springs to play in the Region A tournament.
The Lions lost to Pagosa and finished second in the region.
This year, it was the Lady Pirates' turn to travel and compete in the tournament at the CSCS gym.
The Lions lost to Pagosa and finished second in the region.
But not until the last point was scored in a heart-stopping three-game match won by the Lady Pirates 15-12, 13-15, 15-13.
It was the match everyone in the large crowd had awaited all day, and the noise level in the gym was extreme: a battle of two district champions, each with two wins earlier in the day, each eager to capture the title and the number-one seed from the region heading into next week's state championship tourney at Denver.
Regardless of which team a fan rooted for, no one left the gym unentertained or unsatisfied by the level of competition.
The Lions jumped out to an 8-2 advantage in the first game, and the Lady Pirates were forced to pass what had become a common test for them during the regional competition: do you allow the momentum to continue and to defeat you, or do you maintain your composure and battle against the trend?
As they did against both Faith Christian and Cedaredge, the Ladies chose to stay calm and do battle.
It was the battle of the year.
Lori Walkup hit a crucial cross-court kill to end the Lions' scoring spree. Ashley Gronewoller came up big in the middle, as she would do for the remainder of the afternoon, scoring with a stuff block, then had a tip roll along the top of the net and drop to the Lions' side of the court for another point. The Lions mis-hit a ball and Pagosa had closed the gap to 5-8.
A CSCS error surrendered a point and Gronewoller scored with a kill. Beginning her move to own the net, the 6'3" senior crushed an errant Lion pass for another point and, following a rally that featured a series of blocked shots, Lori Walkup scored with a kill.
With Katie Bliss at the serve, the ladies continued to roll, getting another point on a dump from Lancing and a point on a Lion error.
Suddenly, the Ladies had stolen the momentum and an 11-8 lead.
CSCS came back to 11-10 before Shannon Walkup hit an ace serve. Pagosa 12, CSCS 10.
The home team tied the affair at 12-12, but gave up a point with a hitting error. Lancing and Bliss returned serve to Pagosa with a block and the Lions gave up the last two points of the game with mistakes on their side of the net.
It was Pagosa that established the early lead in game two, going ahead 7-2. The Lions then came back with a four-point run before giving up the serve and a point with hitting errors.
CSCS then steamrolled to a 12-8 lead with some excellent kills off quick-sets but the Ladies did not give in. Lancing scored with a kill off the pass and another point went on the board courtesy of a Lion mistake on the attack. The Lions blocked three successive Pagosa hits, but the Lady Pirate back-row players dug the deflected balls and, finally, Lancing put a perfect power dink to the sideline to tie the game 12-12.
With the Lions in front 14-12, Gronewoller crushed an over-pass. That was as far as the Ladies got; a Lion block thrilled the home crowd and the match was 1-1.
The Ladies played one of their most inspirational games in years in the third game of the match against CSCS.
Down 9-2, it seemed - at least to the Lion fans - that the home team was on the way to a decisive victory.
The Ladies had the Lions right where they wanted them.
"I called a timeout," said Coach Penné Hamilton, " and I told them we (the coaches) couldn't do it for them. I told them they'd have to pull it together themselves and get the job done."
That job started slowly, but the work was inexorable. The Ladies started to chip away at what seemed a block of granite.
One chip at a time.
The Lions led 12-4 when the tide turned.
Katie Bliss returned serve to Pagosa. Buckley, Lancing and Gronewoller took over the game. The three seniors rose to the occasion and riddled the Lion defense with kills, tips and sweeps. Lancing hit an ace for the 12th point and Gronewoller annihilated a quick-set to put the Ladies at the brink of victory with the 14th point.
CSCS managed one more point before a tip by Gronewoller brought the serve back to her team. A hit went off the CSCS blockers' hands on the next exchange and the Ladies were regional champs.
"The first game was back and forth," said Hamilton. "Either team could have prevailed. The third game we started cold, but the kids did what they had to do. It was a great comeback and a great regional tournament for us. It was a good way to earn the trip to the state tournament."
Kills: Gronewoller 19, Lancing, Buckley 12
Aces: Lancing, S.Walkup 1
Digs: Buckley 14, Bliss 12
Assists: Lancing 16, Young 6
Blocks: Gronewoller 4
By Karl Isberg
The Bayfield Wolverines surprised fans at the District 1 volleyball tournament Saturday at Pagosa Springs, as the team, which won only one regular season league game this year, fought its way to a regional tourney berth.
The Wolverines did not surprise the Lady Pirates, however, who made Bayfield their first victim in a day that, with three wins, gave the Pagosa program its eighth consecutive district championship.
Bayfield managed a 1-1 tie in the first game of the match, before the Ladies took off on a five-point run with Shannon Walkup at the serve. Nicole Buckley started what would be a productive day with a score on a top. Middle blocker Ashley Gronewoller nailed a stuff block for a point and Walkup served two aces. With a gift point from the Wolverines, Pagosa was ahead 6-1 and would not look back.
Following a Bayfield point on a Pagosa hitting error, the Ladies ran the board, giving up serve to their opponents only three times before ending the 15-2 rout.
Katie Bliss killed from the middle to start the run; from that point on, it was the Katie Lancing show. The 6'1" senior setter/hitter got three points on kills - one on a deadly quick-set from Amy Young, and scored three times with blocks of Wolverine hitters. Bayfield gave up three points with mistakes and Lori Walkup hit an ace as the Ladies cruised to the victory.
Pagosa never trailed in the second game of the match, taking a 2-0 lead and extending the advantage to 6-2 courtesy of a bevy of Wolverine errors, an ace by Shannon Walkup and a kill by Gronewoller.
Lancing scored the 7th point after keeping the ball alive with a tremendous dig, then got the next point with a tip.
Bayfield managed a third point, but the Ladies stormed back. Gronewoller scored with a block, Shannon Walkup hit another ace and the visitors gave up a point with a hitting error. A power dink by Lancing put Pagosa in front 12-3 and, following a Wolverine hitting error, Buckley killed the ball to put her team on the brink of the win, 14-3.
The Wolverines managed one more point before Gronewoller and Lancing teamed up on a tandem block to end the game 15-4.
Pagosa was in charge all the way in the opening match of the tourney, showing poise and a pace no doubt accelerated by the enhanced postseason practice schedule that has the squad working with the entire four-person coaching staff.
"We came out playing well," said Lady Pirate coach Penné Hamilton. "We got blocked a couple of times, but we picked up the ball off the block and transitioned to our offense. Bayfield played like they had nothing to lose. We pounded them and I thought they were out of it, but they came back to beat the other teams and advance. I thought we started the tournament well and we kept it up most of the day."
Pagosa Spgs. def. Bayfield 15-2, 15-4
Kills: Buckley, Gronewoller, Lancing 6
Assists: Lancing 7, Young 6
Digs: Lancing, Young 2
Aces: S. Walkup 4, Buckley, L. Walkup 2
Blocks: Gronewoller 6, Lancing 2
Solo blocks: Bliss, L. Walkup 1
When knowledgeable volleyball fans think about Colorado 3A competition during the past decade, and try to predict which programs will send teams to the state tournament, several schools invariably come to mind.
Manitou Springs, St. Mary's, Platte Valley, Eaton.
These are teams that regularly compete at the Big Show.
And oh, yes, Pagosa Springs.
With the 2001 regional championship plaque resting in the Pagosa Springs High School trophy case following Saturday's dramatic victory at Colorado Springs, the Ladies are on the way to their seventh state tournament in 10 years.
The Lady Pirates (23-2) will be joined by the regulars listed above, but they will not see another tourney regular - Faith Christian - which was eliminated at the Colorado Springs regional.
Joining the five stalwarts will be two teams that played at state the last couple of years - Colorado Springs Christian (22-4) and Middle Park (23-4).
Aspen (23-4), which makes sporadic appearances at the final tournament of the season, will round out the field.
A scan of the teams reveals an unusual situation: the seeming absence of two or three teams that stand head and shoulders above the others.
Last year, Eaton (now 22-5), the eventual champ, and Platte Valley (22-4), the second-place finisher, were obviously superior to the rest of the field. Not so this year. The two northeast Colorado teams beat each other in matches during the regular season and each team lost significant firepower to graduation last year.
Middle Park finished behind Faith Christian in the regular-season Metro League standings, but won the district tournament. Then, the team took second behind upstart Aspen at the regional tourney Saturday.
Aspen finished in second place in league play to Cedaredge, which Pagosa defeated at regionals, but came through to win the district and regional crowns.
St. Mary's (18-8) took top honors in Tri-Peaks League regular-season action, with Manitou finishing second and Colorado Springs Christian third. At the district tourney, CSCS finished first, Manitou second and St. Mary's third. St. Mary's came through to win a regional title, while Manitou finished second to Eaton in Region D play.
The show at state should be provided by setters. Four of the state's best, in any classification, work on 3A teams, including setters from Middle Park, CSCS and Manitou.
Add Pagosa's double-threat Katie Lancing to the mix and you have three to four setters who will play for Division I college teams next year.
Perhaps the most formidable middle hitter/blocker at the 3A tourney this year will be the Lady Pirates' Ashley Gronewoller. There were times Saturday when the 6'3" senior took control of the net at the regional tournament, and it is unlikely anyone at Denver will best her height.
Senior outside hitter Nicole Buckley will be in a position to damage the chances of any opponent if she gets the sets and hits away at the ball. She has the ability to score cross-court, down the line, and with a variety of off-speed shots.
The remainder of the Lady Pirate starters - juniors Shannon Walkup and Katie Bliss, and freshman Lori Walkup - as well as junior setter Amy Young, must play key roles on offense for the Ladies to win. With both Walkups and Bliss hitting the ball, as they did Saturday, other teams cannot cheat on their blocking schemes. With good sets from Lori Walkup and Amy Young, the Pirates' big hitters will be able to pound away at their adversaries.
While the Lady Pirate offense can match any other team's, it is probably great defense that, as always, will bring the state trophy home. No team at state can be allowed to hit the ball freely, unblocked at the net. And no team can win with a sluggish, unfocused back court. Pagosa has significant presence at the net with the ability to get the hands of blockers on nearly every ball. Lady Pirate backcourt defense has improved steadily through the season and that defense was sharp Saturday against the setter dumps and the tips that start to surface as the level of play elevates in the post-season.
With Saturday's regional victory out of the way, Lady Pirate practices this week dealt with fine-tuning and work on the service game. "We'll continue to work defending the setter dump," said Coach Penné Hamilton. "And we'll work on defending the right side because a lot of teams will run the slide on us. We need steady serving and our transition has to have the killer instinct. Ashley has to own the net."
As for the Ladies' approach to the tournament, it is best summed up in the words of a veteran coach, taking a team to the state tournament for the eighth time in her career. A coach who knows it doesn't matter who you face, or what their reputation - you simply need to beat each one in their turn.
"We think it's a wide-open field," said Hamilton. "We've been there before. If we gel and play as a unit, and if we cut down on errors, we will be all right. The team that is most consistent wins the tournament."
The Ladies begin their quest in pool play Friday morning, meeting Manitou in a match at the Denver Coliseum. That match is the second on the 3A schedule, and will immediately follow the first match of the day which begins at 8 a.m. The Ladies play Middle Park next, mid-day, and finish the first round of action in the late afternoon against Platte Valley.
Semifinals are set for Saturday morning and the Class 3A championship match is scheduled for 3 p.m. that afternoon.
Pagosa's football squad took a giant step down the state 2A championship path by routing Colorado Springs Christian 33-7 last Saturday.
Next for the 8-2 Pirates is 9-1 Eaton. The Reds from Eaton are champs of the Northern Plains League. Eaton reached Saturday's quarterfinal round by edging Faith Christian (8-2) 20-14 last Saturday in Eaton.
Also reaching the final eight, in addition to Pagosa Springs and Eaton, are Monte Vista (7-3), the IML second place team; Yuma (7-3), the second place team from the NPL; Burlington (10-0), champion of Long's Peak League; Roaring Fork (8-2), the West Slope No. 2 team; Florence (9-1), champion of the Pike's Peak League; and Holy Family (8-2), a wild card entry playing in the Metro League.
Yuma plays at Monte Vista, Burlington plays at Roaring Fork, and Florence plays at Holy Family.
Pagosa's thrill-a-minute offense propelled hometown fans from their seats early on when Quarterback Ronnie Janowsky flipped a screen pass to Darin Lister hovering behind a wall of blockers in the middle of the field. Lister scooted 57 yards to plant the ball in the end zone, then missed the extra point kick. Pagosa jumped on top 6-0 with almost eight minutes remaining in the first period.
Following the touchdown, Lister's kickoff soared into the end zone. Starting from their own 20-yard line, the Colorado Springs school picked up a couple of first downs, then was forced to punt. With the ball on the 17-yard line, Lister exploded through a huge gap in the Lion line and sped 83 yards to again ring the bell for Pagosa.
On their feet again and waving their arms, Pagosa fans booed with disbelief when officials called the TD back and levied a holding call against the Pirates.
As the game progressed it became evident that Lister was not the only Pirate capable of outrunning the entire Lion squad. After Caleb Mellette slammed for 11, Janowsky passed to Brandon Charles for 10 and a first down, Brandon Rosgen hammered for 2, and Mellette ran for another 6, Janowsky and Ross Wagle teamed up for a 64-yard scoring strike. Mellette ran for two on the extra point try.
With 35 seconds remaining in the opening period, Pagosa fans had plenty to cheer about. Their Pirates were on top 14-0. Moreover, they were proving themselves much more mobile than their larger opponents.
Following the second Pirate TD, Lister again kicked the ball into the end zone. After picking up one first down, the Lions were forced to punt. Lister fielded the punt and Pagosa drove to the Lion 30-yard line. On fourth down, Lister's field goal try was short and to the left.
Colorado Springs Christian's next attempt to move the ball ended with a sack of the quarterback by defensive end Cord Ross. Starting from the Lion 49-yard line, a Janowsky to Charles pass moved the ball to the 3, where Mellette cracked across for Pagosa's third touchdown. Lister kicked the extra point putting Pagosa on top 21-0 with more than four minutes remaining in the first half.
Pagosa launched one more first-half score after shutting down the Lions for four downs. A Janowsky to Charles pass boosted Pagosa's lead to 27-0 with about a minute remaining in the half. Seconds later, it looked as if Pagosa might score one more TD before the halftime buzzer. Two throws to Charles failed, Janowsky knelt, and the half ended with Pagosa on top 27-0.
How high will the score be, was the only question in the minds of Pagosa fans as the second half began. As it turned out, the second half was a different ball game.
Pagosa received the opening kickoff and seven plays later fumbled the ball away. When the Colorado Springs school couldn't move the ball, Pagosa took over on offense again. The Pirates couldn't advance the pigskin either, and had to give it back. In a series of turnovers, Pagosa linebacker Pablo Martinez intercepted a pass, then Janowsky fumbled the pigskin back to the Lions, and as the third period ended, Charles intercepted for Pagosa Springs.
On their first possession of the final period, Pagosa was forced to punt. Starting from their own 20, the Lions put together their only scoring drive of the game. The drive used almost four minutes and narrowed the Pirate lead to 27-7.
Apparently stung by the Lion score, Pagosa repeated the first period scoring screen pass to plant the ball on the Lion 18-yard line. From there, Mellette punched across for the final score of the game. A fumbled snap messed up the extra point try.
"I'm glad we won," Stretton said. "We played good defense, maybe the best defense we've played all year. The guys were taking care of their responsibilities, playing their positions."
Concerning the Pirate offense, Stretton said, "We still have things to fix, but they will fix pretty easily."
Pagosa's offense generated 472 yards, despite the absence of leading receiver Jason Schutz. Schutz stood along the sideline after straining a knee against Monte Vista week earlier.
Janowsky continued on the pace he has followed all season by completing 13 of 26 passes. Janowsky aerials included three TDs and no interceptions.
Charles showed the good hands by hanging onto nine passes for 147 yards and one TD. Lister stuck to three passes, good for 118 yards and a TD. Wagle's two pass receptions ate up 71 yards and produced a TD.
Mellette rushed 14 times for 54 yards and a pair of TDs; Lister rushed seven times for 50 yards; Rosgen rushed four times for 27 yards; and Janowsky kept the ball twice for five yards.
Almost everyone on the defensive roster contributed to shutting down the Lions. Linebacker Martinez contributed two solo tackles, one tackle assist, and turned in an intercept. Ross, from his defensive end position, made four solo tackles, four assists, and turned in two sacks for minus 16 yards.
Michael Vega made five solo tackles, two assists, and two sacks for minus 8 yards. Ben Marshall is credited with six solo tackles to lead Pagosa in that category, one assist, and one tackle for a loss. Lister made five solo tackles; Charles four unassisted tackles, an assist, and two interceptions.
Pagosa Springs 14 13 0 7 33
CS Christian 0 0 0 7 7
PS: Janowsky 57 pass Lister (Lister kick fail). PS: Janowsky 64 pass Wagle (Mellette run for 2). PS: Mellette 3 run (Lister kick good). PS: Janowsky 24 pass Charles (Lister kick no good). CSC: #7 6 pass 35 (kick good). PS: Mellette 1 run (bad snap).
Pagosa Springs hosts Eaton's Reds Saturday at 1 p.m. in a quarterfinal playoff game involving two of the final eight 2A football teams in Colorado.
The decision to play in Pagosa Springs resulted from a coin toss. Both Pagosa Springs and Eaton played on their home fields last week. The next step in the "where do they play" process adopted by the Colorado High School Athletic Association is a coin toss to determine home field advantage. Pagosa won the toss, thereby avoiding a trip to Eaton, located north of Greeley not far from the Wyoming border.
Coached by Myron Stretton, the Pirates earned the right to play Eaton by shredding Colorado Springs Christian last Saturday 33-7. Stretton, in his fourth season as head coach, has led his charges to victory in their last seven games. Included in the win streak is a 4-0 march to the Pirates' third consecutive Intermountain League championship.
The Reds are champions of the Northern Plains League. Other teams in that league are Brush, Highland, Platte Valley, Wray, and Yuma. The Northern Plains League shares a distinction with the Intermountain League: both leagues qualified two teams for the quarterfinals. Yuma, No. 2 in the Northern Plains League meets Monte Vista, No. 2 in the IML, in a quarterfinals game Saturday. Monte also won a coin toss allowing them to play at home.
Intermountain League members in addition to Pagosa are Monte Vista, Centauri, Bayfield, and Ignacio.
So which is the best team in the state? Pagosa's coaching staff thinks the Pirates can go all of the way. Denver pollsters have had Denver Christian on top most of the year.
"When you get this far, there are at least five or six teams who could win it all," Stretton said. "The winner will be the team with the best discipline, the team making the fewest mistakes."
In Stretton's lexicon, mistakes are defined as penalties, dropped passes, fumbles, and failure to cover blocking or defensive assignments. A good game happens when defensive players cover their designated man or territory and when offensive players run the correct routes and follow through on the blocking scheme. And, of course, when the ball handlers take care of the ball.
A team of few mistakes may be the best description of the Reds, champions of the Northern Plains League.
The Pirate coaching staff has observed two Eaton game films. Eaton, of course, has seen at least two Pagosa game films. As soon as the coaches of the respective teams learned they were to face each other, they agreed to meet at a halfway point and exchange films. In addition to being nice, exchanging films is a CHSAA requirement.
"Eaton is a disciplined team," Stretton said. "They have a good quarterback and two running backs with almost a 1,000 yards each to their credit."
The Reds' winning streak exceeds that of the Pirates. They opened the season by losing 24-21 to Denver Christian. Since then, Eaton has reeled off nine straight victories including a 5-0 league record. Their victories include preseason wins over Roosevelt, Berthoud, and Rawlins, Wyo. In league play they beat Highland 48-0, Platte Valley 53-0, Brush 49-20, Yuma 15-14, and Wray 27-20.
Eaton is coached by Bill Mondt, in his 6th year as head coach. The school's enrollment is about 445 students. It is located on Hwy. 85 a few miles north of Greeley.
CHSAA rules govern Saturday's playoff game. That means admission tickets cost $5 for adults, $4 for juniors and senior citizens. Season passes and student passes valid for the regular season will not be honored at the game.
Visitor Center figures up from 2000
The fifth annual Immaculate Heart of Mary Fashion Show "Paradise in Pagosa" is Nov. 10 at the Parish Hall on Lewis Street beginning at noon. This lunch and fashion show combo always provides both tons of fun and delicious food. Last year Dahrl Henley made the most delicious orange-honey carrots I've ever wrapped my lips around. Tickets for this event are $18, and I am hopeful that there will be some available when this issue hits the stands. This is a sell-out every year, and I can't guarantee that there will be tickets left two days before the event, but give us a call at 264-2360 and we'll apprise you of the ticket status.
Until then, Aloha.
Little Johnny Porter came to me several months ago and gently admonished me about the fact that I had been slacking off with my occasional reports sharing all of our Visitor Center numbers and stats. I was so grateful that he did that because I had, indeed, put that little piece on a back burner somewhere and totally forgotten about it. Since our town is so heavily dependent upon tourism business, it is of special interest to us all to learn about the number of folks coming through the VC and the number of folks calling or e-mailing us for information about Pagosa Springs. Here ya go, John, and Happy Birthday this month to boot.
Believe it or not, with all the concerns about tourism in the United States, especially since Sept. 11, the Visitor Center numbers are up from last year. Mind you, they're only up by thirty, but up nonetheless up. Year to date, we have hosted 40,594 visitors from all over the world. Not surprisingly, our friends from the Lone Star State take first place honors with 6,946 gracing the Visitor Center. Typically, our Colorado neighbors are in second place with 5,461, and, also typically, New Mexico comes in third with 3,340. Oklahoma and Arizona take fourth and fifth places with 1,929 and 1,670 respectively. Always of interest to me are the numbers from out of the country, and those seem to grow each year. Great Britain brought us 313 visitors, Germany 193 and Canada 116. In the ever-mysterious category of "Other" is the number 716. Those are not aliens, by the way, but from this planet. From looking at all the figures from years past, we should have no trouble at all this year exceeding the 42,552 total from last year.
Somehow I find these figures rather comforting in the face of all the national and international concerns.
Our packet totals for the year are down, but that's what one would expect with the efforts we've expended on creating a great Web site. Frankly, I'm still amazed at the number of folks who look at everything we have to offer on our Web site and subsequently call and request we send information to them. The top two states for requests are the same top two for visitors, Texas with 649 and Colorado with 528. Interestingly, California falls into third place with 199, and then New Mexico and Arizona almost tie with 167 and 161 respectively. Oklahoma doesn't appear at all in the top five here but would fall into sixth place with 151. The Arizona figures have risen since we have begun more marketing there and that is gratifying, indeed. So there you have it, folks. Once again, I find these figures good cause for optimism in anticipating our winter. A little snow wouldn't hurt things at all, of course.
It's once again time for you to think about bringing in flyers for our quarterly newsletter, The Chamber Communiqué. This has obviously become a popular marketing tool because we already have three inserts with no coaxing at all. In case you are not familiar with this economical advertising tool, allow me to elucidate. It is so simple - you bring us 725 flyers with all the information about your great December special, your move to a new location, additions you might have made to your inventory, etc., and a check for $40, and we will take care of the rest and mail it out to our over 780 membership. This edition is especially popular because it gives everyone a big jump on advertising for the holidays and costs so little to do so. I'm giving you an early heads-up because I know the time crunch we all begin to experience as Christmas approaches, so you have plenty of time to get those babies in here. Just give a call if you have questions and we'll be happy to answer them at 264-2360
As some of you are well aware, I have been making little reminder calls this week about renewals. We are such a busy town and no one knows better than I how easy it is to set aside those renewal reminders to take care of "sometime later." I call not to aggravate, harass or pressure you I promise. I call most importantly because I don't want to lose your membership - it's that simple. It's like a root canal every time we lose a member, so we try like the devil to hang on to each and every one of you. The other reason I call is that Morna is always trying to update our membership and keep things current, and it's a tremendous challenge for her when she can't be sure when someone just forgets to renew or if they have made a choice not to. So please understand when I call that it is out of concern. I learn so much when I make these calls and sometimes have the best chats in the world with folks I haven't seen for awhile.
That being said, let's welcome the eight good folks who did renew this week even without a reminder call. Thanks to Larry Johnson with Johnson Builders; Mark Dold with Skyhawk Aviation Services, LLC, located at the Durango-LaPlata County Airport; Nancy Torrey with Budget Rent-a-Car located at Stevens Field (I am living in what was formerly Virginia Torrey's home, so it's always a kick to welcome Nancy); Byron and Karen Greco with Rock House Haven; Moe Janosec with High Desert Publications located in Mancos; Reverend Donald Ford with the Community United Methodist Church; and my old friend, Mary Weiss with the Law Office of Mary Weiss. Thanks, y'all.
Darmopray, Muirheads win costume prizes
There were numerous Halloween characters roaming the Senior Center last Wednesday.
Eva (kitty cat ) Darmopray won the prize for the best single costume and Bruce and Mary Muirhead won the prize for the best couples' costumes. Those who haven't seen Bruce as "classy lady" and Mary as "expectant mom" don't know what they're missing.
There were also angels (Alias Dawnie and Stella), devils (alias Rose and Dolores), a gypsy (Donna Boughan), cowgirl Dale Evans (alias Dorothy O'Hara), a clown (alias Dody Smith), a witch (Marie Wollenweber), an old, old man (Johnny Martinez), a duck hunter (Cindy Laner), a couple of cheerleaders (Musetta Wollenweber and Susie Rivas), a chauffeur (Sam Matthews) and numerous others. We had fun parading for the kids in Head Start and posing for the judges.
A big Thank You to Anna Scavezze for her donation of ceramic and painting supplies; Nancy Giordano for puzzles; Inez Winter for the dry-erase board; Lee Sterling, Mae Boughan, and Marilyn and Louis Ball for books and magazines; Tom Cruse for the cookies; Joanne Sager for two mammography certificates; Frank Hodge for the food donation; Robert Creech for the fruit; Patty from Massage at the Springs for the chair massages; Patty Tillerson for taking blood pressures; and to George Davis for shoes he donated. The seniors will enjoy using these items and services.
Our Volunteer of the Month is Jerry Sager, who voluntarily maintains the landscaping around the Senior Center. Thanks so much, Jerry.
We appreciated the presentation on Monday by Terry Mitchell, senior Blind Program coordinator for the Southwest Center for Independence in Durango, who displayed visual aids and talked to us about the assistance her company provides to those who need help with their sight.
Funding is available from the state, so assessments are free. Terry may be reached at 259-1672 if you need to talk with her.
Mary Ann and Donna from Social Services will be with us tomorrow to discuss LEAP, the Low-Income Energy Assistance Program. Applications are also used by the Energy Saving Partners program to provide home energy efficiency or weatherization services. This is very important to older citizens who can hardly afford the current energy costs.
Thanks to Mark DeWinter from the Plaid Pony and Susie Fisher. Susie will teach free craft classes on ways to decorate our homes for the holidays with delicately handmade gifts. The first class was last Tuesday and the second will be at 1 p.m. Nov. 13. This is a chance for learning something new and having fun so we hope lots of folks will take advantage of it.
Another new activity at the Center is on Fridays at 1 p.m. We hope all you bridge players will join us to start up a group to play bridge.
On Friday, Nov. 16, at 10 a.m. Kathy Conway from EMS will provide a non-formal, nuts and bolts, non-certified CPR class. Sign-up sheet for this class is in the lobby, or you may call the Center at 264-2167 and have them sign you up. There is no charge for the class, though donations would be appreciated.
Genealogical Society may revise meetings
The Archuleta County Genealogical Society meets the second Sunday of the month at Sisson Library. The next meeting is Nov. 11. At this meeting the possibility of changing the meeting time to every other month will be discussed. With Pagosa Springs blossoming so - with so many things to belong to - the time not only fills up but overloads. Such a change to every other month could help make the Society stronger.
New officers are Peggy Shipman, president: Kari Montagriss, vice president; Sherry Lee, secretary; and Paige Wiersma, treasurer.
Sisson Library has the largest genealogical collection in the Four Corners. There's something about handling a book and Sisson has excellent references.
Seeds of Learning will sponsor the "Holiday Tour of Homes" Dec. 9 from 6-9 p.m. This is a first-time event. Only 150 tickets will be sold and all tickets will be sold ahead of time. No tickets will be sold at the door.
The tickets are $8 and can be purchased at the Chamber of Commerce, Seeds of Learning, Pagosa Kids and WolfTracks.
Five homes will be on the tour: the Johnson's on Cloud Cap; the Varazels' on North Pagosa Boulevard; the Searles' on Hersch Avenue and the Lairds' on Lightning Ridge south on U.S. 84.
Local U.S. Marines celebrate their 226th birthday this Friday at the Greenhouse Restaurant.
As they say in the Marines: "Once a Marine, always a Marine." In the latest issue of Imprimis, reprints of speeches made by World War II veterans at a special Hillsdale seminar include this verse that was carved on a rock by "an unknown" Marine after the battle of Iwo Jima. (Reprinted by permission from Imprimis, the national speech digest of Hillsdale College.)
"When you go home tell them for us and say for your tomorrow we gave our today."
Fun on the Run
An elderly man in Pheonix called his son in New York and said, "I hate to ruin your day, but I have to tell you that your mother and I are divorcing; 45 years of misery is enough."
"Pop, what are you talking about?" the son screamed.
"We can't stand the sight of each other any longer," the old man said. "We're sick of each other, and I'm sick of talking about this, so you call your sister in Chicago and tell her," and he hung up.
Frantic, the son called his sister, who exploded on the phone. "They're not getting divorced if I have anything to do about it," she shouted. "I'll take care of this."
She called Pheonix immediately, and screamed at the old man, "You are not getting divorced. Don't do a single thing until I get there. I'm calling my brother back, and we'll both be there tomorrow. Until then, don't do a thing, do you hear me?" and hung up.
The old man hung up his phone and turned to his wife and said, "Okay, they're coming for Thanksgiving and paying their own fares . . . Now what do we tell them for Christmas."
Unknown's burial basis for Veterans Day
In 1921, an unknown World War I American soldier was buried in Arlington National Cemetery. This site, on a hillside overlooking the Potomac River and the city of Washington, became the focal point of reverence for America's veterans. (It is interesting to note the Arlington Cemetery site honoring "America's" soldiers, is the former estate of General Robert E. Lee, which he gave up to lead the Confederate Armies during the American Civil War.)
Similar ceremonies occurred earlier in England and France, where an unknown soldier was buried in each nation's highest place of honor (in England, Westminster Abbey; in France, the Arc de Triomphe). These memorial gestures all took place on Nov. 11, giving universal recognition to the celebrated ending of World War I fighting at 11 a.m., Nov. 11, 1918, the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month. The day became known as "Armistice Day."
On Memorial Day 1958, two more unidentified American war dead were brought from overseas and interred in the plaza beside the unknown soldier of World War I. One was killed in World War II, the other in the Korean War.
In 1973, a law passed providing interment of an unknown American from the Vietnam War, but none was found for several years. In 1984, an unknown serviceman from that conflict was placed alongside the others. To honor these men, symbolic of all Americans who gave their lives in all wars, an Army honor guard, The 3d U.S. Infantry (The Old Guard), keeps day and night vigil.
A law passed in 1968 changed the national commemoration of Veterans Day to the fourth Monday in October. It soon became apparent, however, that Nov. 11 was a date of historic significance to many Americans. Therefore, in 1978 Congress returned the observance to its traditional date.
With that very short background on observing Veterans Day, it is worth noting there will be a number of tributes to veterans in Archuleta County. I'm sure there will be other observances in other areas of the county, but these are the events I am aware of as I write this week's column.
The 8th graders in Pagosa Springs will start things off by paying tribute to our veterans with a pancake breakfast at the Catholic Parrish Hall on Monday, Nov. 12 from 7 to 9:30 am. These young people will prepare the breakfast and serve the veterans. I'm sure there will be some appropriate comments and tributes paid, flags waved by both veterans and students. All veterans are invited to be the guests of the 8th graders and are encouraged to wear their uniforms if possible. This activity is in conjunction with their history studies.
Shortly thereafter, at 11 a.m. on Monday, at the Pagosa Springs High School, the students will conduct a flag ceremony complete, I believe, with a band playing patriotic music. Representatives of veterans groups will be on hand and the public is certainly invited and encouraged to attend.
Along with the flag ceremonies, the winner of the Rueben Marquez Memorial Patriotism and Writing contest will be announced. The essay contest is sponsored by the Marquez family to honor the memory of Reuben Marquez, who was a veteran very proud of his military service and was a long time resident of Pagosa Springs. Cash prizes are awarded in several categories of essay winners.
On Sunday, Nov. 11, American Legion Post 108 in Pagosa Springs will conduct a Veterans Day ceremony in front of their building in Town Park at 11 a.m. The American Legion Auxiliary ladies will host a potluck lunch following the ceremonies. I know from past experience these ladies prepare some wonderful dishes. Everyone is invited to attend and bring a dish of food.
For information on these and other veteran's benefits please call or stop by the Veterans Service Office located on the lower floor of the Archuleta County Courthouse. An active Internet website for Archuleta County Veterans Service Office can be found at www.geocities.com/vso_archuleta. The office number is 264-2304, the FAX number is 264-5949, and E-mail is email@example.com. The office is open from 8 to noon and 1 to 4, Monday through Thursday, or Friday by appointment. Bring your DD Form 214 (Discharge) for registration with the county, application for VA programs, and for filing in the VSO office.
Need management program set Nov. 14
Nov. 5 - 4-H New Family Orientation, Extension office, 6 p.m.
Nov. 8 - Cloverbuds, 4 p.m.
Nov. 9 - Colorado Kids, 2 p.m.
Nov. 9 - 4-H Achievement Night and dinner, Extension office, 6 p.m.
Want to know more about how to control weeds with the use of grazing management? An alternative weed management program will be offered at the fairgrounds Extension Office on November 14th at 7 p.m. This program emphasizes using natural diet preferences of goats as a tool to utilize plants present in a landscape. These animals utilize natural resources on small and large acreage while returning other forms of life. Grazing is managed so selection pressure stresses noxious weeds and favors desired grasses and species. Land Whisperer and Ewe4ic Ecological Services, Inc. management is site specific and is determined by three things:
1) What is the plant(s) problem?
2) What other plants are present?
3) What is the goal of the landowner - long term and short term?
Come join us and learn more about integrated management strategies to control weeds, improve pastures, and increase production on your property.
Very recently, the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture announced an important new program to accelerate the eradication of the fatal brain disease, scrapie, from the nation's sheep flocks and goatherds.
Scrapie is a fatal degenerative disease affecting the central nervous system. An abnormal protein, called a prion, is associated with the disease. Transmission primarily occurs at lambing/kidding through exposure of a ewe's/doe's offspring and other animals to an infected female's birth fluids and placenta; thus the emphasis placed on breeding animals in the eradication program.
Scrapie is in a class of disease known as transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs). Other diseases in this class include bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in cattle and Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) in deer and elk. Recently publicity surrounding TSEs, and limited knowledge about the diseases, has heightened public concern. Extensive epidemiological research has shown no evidence that scrapie can be transmitted to humans.
One of the following clinical signs of scrapie may be present in affected animals: weight loss despite retention of appetite, behavioral changes, itching and rubbing, wool pulling, biting at legs or side, lip smacking, loss of coordination, increased sensitivity to noise and movement, high-stepping gait of forelimbs, bunny-hop movement of rear, swaying of back end, tremor, down - unable to stand, and death.
A live animal test for scrapie has been developed and is expected to be available later this year. The test uses a biopsy of lymphoid tissue from the third eyelid. It will be used to test suspect and exposed animals for scrapie infection. The new test is expected to be a valuable tool in identifying and cleaning up infected flocks/herds.
In order to eradicate scrapie among sheep and goats, methods for identifying infected and exposed animals must be created. Therefore, sheep and goats not enrolled in the Voluntary Scrapie Flock Certification Program (VSFCP) will be subject to new identification requirements before they change ownership and/or enter into interstate commerce.
The following animals will need ear tags or tattoos: all sheep 18 months and older, all breeding sheep, all scrapie exposed, suspect, test-positive and high-risk animals, breeding goats, except low-risk commercial goats, all sheep and goats for exhibition. Note; there are less stringent requirements for sheep and goats moving interstate for grazing or similar management without change of ownership. A premise number for use on approved ear tags or tattoos will be assigned by the area APHIS or State Veterinarian offices.
As for the identification process, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will provide ear tags, without charge, to producers. Tags will be available through the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), Veterinary Services (VS) Area Office and/or the State Veterinarian's office in each state. Metal ear tags are preferred because of their low cost and durability; however, plastic ear tags may be provided when requested. Sheep producers who prefer to use a different type of tag may purchase official tags through specified, approved tag companies and tag types will be maintained on the APHIS scrapie web page www.aphis.usda.gov/vs/scrapie.
Additionally, producers will be required to keep identification records for five years after the animal has left the flock/herd.
Specific to goats
Because the incidence of scrapie in goats is extremely low, and sampling at slaughter is not considered cost effective at this time, different requirements have been put in place for goats. Goats in slaughter channels will not be required to carry individual identification numbers when they are moved in interstate commerce unless they are scrapie-positive, high risk, exposed or from an infected or source herd.
Commercial low-risk goats may be moved in interstate commerce without identification. Commercial low-risk goats: are raised for fiber and meat, are not registered or exhibited, have not been in contact with sheep, are not scrapie-positive, high-risk, or exposed animals, and are not from an infected or source herd.
Sexually intact goats used for exhibitions such as fairs, shows, demonstrations and petting zoos or that are registered will be required to carry individual identification numbers and have health certificates to cross state lines. Goats with legible registry tattoos and that are accompanied by a copy of their registry certificate do not require any additional identification.
In addition to official identification, each breeding sheep or goat crossing state lines or entering into interstate commerce must be accompanied by an official Certificate of Veterinary Inspection (health certificate) issued by an accredited veterinarian.
Hot tips - financial hocus-pocus
If you're worried about your investments holding up in the future, have I got a deal for you. This is based on some offers Hotshot keeps getting.
Hotshot, the man I live with, is still a working engineer, although most of his work gets done on the Net. So he gets a lot of e-mail. Some of his e-mail comes through the university where he used to teach.
And about once a week he gets another incredible "investment" opportunity, via his university e-mail address. The subject heading will say something like, Strictly Confidential and Urgent. Or maybe, Top Secret Business Proposal. The most honest one? Proposition.
The offers go something like this.
"Dear Sir: I am a lawyer (or maybe, I am a member of a governmental oversight committee) in - here we have the name of some country in Africa - and I need your help."
Well, that's a good start. Appeal to our generous nature. We Americans like to help people. Makes us feel good.
The letters all go on to describe a problem. Some government contract fell through or was "over-invoiced," or the principal contractor died, or my client's funds are being confiscated, or whatever. It's a different reason each time.
The important thing is that there's a lot of money hanging around in a bank in this African country, often in a "Suspense Account."
The only suspense is who's going to bite and agree to help them out. Apparently the bank or the government can't just take the money back. Or, if the money belongs to some individual, they can't find any of his heirs.
Often there's a time limit. Maybe the money's been sitting around for 9 or 10 years already and needs to be moved out of this account very soon, or it will be confiscated by some shadowy agency of the government.
I'm thinking, if it was government money once, why shouldn't the government take it back? Use it for some other project.
If the problem is that heirs need to be found, the lawyer is prepared to draw up the necessary papers to identify Hotshot as the next of kin. Or if they need a company to receive the money, that can be arranged too. As one letter said, "it does not matter whether or not your company does contract projects of this nature."
(As humor columnist Dave Barry so eloquently puts it, "I'm not making this up.")
The important thing is that they need the help of a foreigner. The money was originally intended to go to a foreigner, and cooperation from a foreigner is the only possible solution. Preferably a very gullible foreigner.
The writer says they need to transfer the money into some foreign account. Like, maybe, Hotshot's.
All Hotshot has to do to help out is agree to have this foreign bank, or this foreign lawyer, or this agent of a foreign government, transfer the money into our bank account here in the U.S. Somehow that solves the accounting problem.
These folks are talking about a lot of money, at least from my perspective.
Twenty-one million. Thirty million. The latest plea said $100 million. The bait is getting more tempting. You could buy a lot of fishing flies with that kind of cash in your pocket. Or in your bank account.
But wait. We don't get to keep it all.
In return for helping them out, for supplying his bank account information and his bank routing number and all the rest of it, Hotshot will get to keep some of the money, usually about 30 percent. The bank or the government will keep 60 percent. The agent or the lawyer will get 10 percent for being such a good guy, I guess.
Then the money gets divided up, and a lot of it goes back to the foreign government, or to the lawyer, or to the agent and his partners. All this switcheroo, this financial hocus pocus. And at no time do their fingers leave their hands.
We had an Explorer Scout once who enjoyed pretending that she was as dumb as an ox. As dense as a post. The boys used to tease her, said they had a television in their backpack tent. She acted frustrated and furious because they wouldn't let her watch any shows.
At least I hope it was an act.
But that's how gullible these letter writers must think Hotshot is. And they're sending this to his university e-mail address. And they're undoubtedly sending it to lots of other professors too. How dumb do they think university folks are? Or how greedy?
Another scary thought - does anyone actually answer? Offer to help out? Send them the bank routing information?
How long does it take to empty your bank account once they have that info?
These people are wasting their talents. They should be submitting these suspense novel manuscripts to publishers. Such creative writing deserves to be shown to a wider audience.
Hotshot deals with these weekly request by hitting the delete button.
Meanwhile, I'm looking for a way to transfer some big money into the country. If you're interested in helping out, just send me your bank account information.
Ski & Bow Rack captures adult volleyball title
Congratulations to the league winners in adult coed volleyball: Ski & Bow Rack finished at 10-2, Colorado Construction at 9-2, Piano Creek 8-3, CPR Title 5-6, Dulce/Silver Dollar 4-7, American Family 2-9 and Ace Hardware 1-10.
The first round of tournament play started Monday with CPR Title playing American Family Insurance, Piano Creek Ranch facing Dulce/Silver Dollar and Ski & Bow Rack playing Ace Hardware.
Tournament brackets are available at the games and at Town Hall. Tournament games will continue through Nov. 19.
Youth volleyball clinic
The third annual youth volleyball clinic is in full swing and will continue through Nov. 19.
Sessions are being held Monday and Wednesday evenings for fifth and sixth graders. The fifth graders meet from 6:30 to 7:30 and the sixth graders from 7:30 to 8:30. All practices take place in the junior high gym.
Participants can register for $10 with the Recreation Department at Town Hall or at the gym.
The youth baseball committee met last Tuesday to determine the future of youth baseball in Pagosa Springs. The 14-year-olds will play in the Sandy Koufax Durango League, a separate team will be formulated for the 13-year-olds, who will play under the same AABC rules. The 11- and 12 year-olds will also play under AABC rules and with the 13-year-olds.
Included in the rules changes from last year with AABC are changes in the length of base paths and changes allowing players the opportunity to lead off while on base. For more information and other rules changes, contact the recreation department at 264-4151.
Youth basketball registration is underway until Nov. 16. Registration rate through Nov. 9 is only $10 but will go up to $20 from then until Nov. 16. Registration forms are available at Town Hall, the elementary school and the intermediate school.
This year's season is scheduled to start Nov. 26 with team practices. A group practice for players 11 and 12 years old will be held Nov. 15 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the junior high gym. Teams will be formed on Nov. 20 at a coaches' meeting. Games will begin Dec.10 and continue into February. This year, players will receive T-shirts as uniforms.
The Pagosa Springs Recreation Department will host the annual Elks Hoop Shoot, sponsored by the Durango Elks Lodge, Dec. 1 at 9:30 a.m. in the intermediate school gym.
The Elks "Hoop Shoot" is a nationwide basketball free throw shooting contest for boys and girls 8 to 13. Hoop shoot winners are awarded Hoop Shoot T-shirts, patches and will advance to regional playoffs at Escalante Middle School in Durango at 2 p.m. Jan. 12.
Boys and girls compete separately in the following age groups: 8-9, 10-11, and 12-13.
The Town still has seven old light poles salvaged from the middle of downtown for sale at $50 per pole. Interested parties can purchase as many poles as desired and need only contact Doug Call at Town Hall, 264-4151, ext. 231 for more information.
PSAC plans winter workshop series
The PSAC Gallery at Town Park will be changing hours for the winter months.
From December 2001 through March 2002, the gallery office will be open Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. During the winter months the gallery will not have shows but the PSAC will provide and develop a variety of workshops.
The building will be closed April 1 through April 21. From April 22 through October, the gallery and office will be open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. These new changes will further facilitate the mission of our arts council and provide our community with a dynamic and expanded art environment.
It is time for all artists wishing to exhibit at the gallery in 2002 to pick up their application forms at the gallery or call 264-5020 for more information. The application deadline for the upcoming season is Feb. 15. Anyone wishing a specific time slot should get an application in as soon as possible. This upcoming season holds great promise for all our exhibitors.
Paul and Carla Roberts will be the featured performers at the Hudson House Concert Nov. 17 at 7 p.m. These extremely talented performers are known for their ability to play unusual musical instruments from around the world.
Carla sings in several languages and performs ethnic folk dances, and together they provide a colorful and exciting musical experience.
Call Bill Hudson at 264-2491 to make reservations or for more information. Seating is limited so do it now. Admission is free to kids and teenagers. The admission includes a buffet of luscious desserts, tea and coffee.
The 14th Annual PSAC Photography Contest will kick off with a reception Feb. 2. from 5-7 p.m. at Moonlight Books. The display will run through Feb. 23.
This contest is open to all amateur and professional photographers. Entries must not have been previously exhibited in Archuleta County. Each exhibitor may submit a total of four entries in either black and white or color, but only two entries can be submitted in any one category. Each photo must be at least 5x7 unmatted/unmounted and the total circumference of the matted/mounted/framed photo may not exceed 85". All photos must be ready to hang: matted/mounted or framed. Framed photos must have screweyes and wire hangers only. Matted and mounted photos need plastic stick-on hangers.
There will be a $3 entry fee per photograph. Entries will be accepted at Moonlight Books until 5 p.m. Jan. 30. Rules and entry forms will be available at Moonlight Books, Pagosa Photography, Focus and Sound, Mountain Snapshots and PSAC Gallery.
We wish to thank all of you who have volunteered in any capacity during this year. Our art community flourishes due to the many hours of valuable time which you have contributed.
A special thanks to all our Artsline writers who capably kept PSAC in the limelight all year. Our appreciation also goes to Old West Press and Dee McPeek for their considerable contributions in printing the PSAC quarterly newsletter, The Petroglyph. Kudos go to all those who have written articles and worked on the mailing.
The following events are sponsored by the arts council: Summer Arts Camp, Creede Repertory Theater, Garage Sale, Photo Contest, Spanish Fiesta, Home and Garden Tour, CD Sampler, Pagosa Portrait Project, Petroglyph Newsletter, workshops and clinics and the gallery in Town Park. Because of your support we are able to offer our community an excellent art environment.
Salute to our families in their week
Gov. Bill Owens recently proclaimed Nov. 4-10 as "The Week of the Family." He very strongly campaigned on the note that "Families are Colorado's Secret to Success." He emphasized the importance of family tradition and family strength.
He makes a strong point that families are more than a group of individuals related by blood, marriage or adoption.
He said, "A family is a community of persons united by their love and commitment to one another. It is through family life that our most cherished values and traditions are passed from one generation to the next. Through our experience as members of a family, we learn important lessons about love and faith, duty and respect, personal responsibility, and concern for others."
To me, these words are extremely powerful. Since I work with families in Archuleta County, I admire the point that Gov. Owens is trying to get across. He acknowledges that families need and deserve recognition, encouragement and support.
On behalf of the "Week of the Family," I challenge all families in Pagosa Springs to have a family night if they are not already doing so.
What is a family night? It's a commitment for family members to spend one night a week together without interruptions or conflicts.
Some families that I talked to said their family night gave them security. They were able to fully enjoy one another's company. The whole evening then stayed positive.
The key here is to do whatever is planned. If your youngest child chooses to play Pin the Tail on the Donkey, everybody has to do it. If your teenager chooses Twister, everybody does it. If Dad chooses Monday Night Football or if Mom chooses to sew, everybody does it.
A great idea that a parent gave me last week included spending time with her children looking at old photos. They then made a collage together of different things from everyone's life (to date). She said the activity really made her children feel important. Now they're able to add to it each year.
Another activity given to me involved a "shopping list." The family started by choosing what they wanted for dinner. Then everybody wrote down things they needed for that dinner. The next thing they did was organize where they were going to get each item. This could include going to McDonald's for burgers, to a convenience store for soft drinks, and even to the supermarket as a last stop for ice cream. The idea was to give everybody a chance to be heard and then as a family they worked it all out.
My hope for the Week of the Family is to send a strong message that every family is valued. During this time of crisis, it is especially important to celebrate and honor all families.
Special edition gift traces U.S. novels
We've just received a gift book in memory of Eleanor Gehres, former Director of the Denver Public Library's Western History Department.
The book, "The Best American Novels of the Twentieth Century Still Readable Today," was written by Eleanor.
In 1994, Robert Baron of Fulcrum Press asked Eleanor to write a book on what America was reading. As she worked on the project, she changed the scope to cover fiction books that every educated person should read. The final list included 150 American novels that are still a pleasure to read today.
Eleanor was diagnosed with cancer and while it slowed her work, she was still researching and making notes when she died in March of 2000. She had finished reviews of 125 of the 150. Her husband and Mr. Baron decided to finish the book. Friends wrote reviews of the final 25 books.
The book is organized as she planned. Each decade begins with a list of events. This provides a framework to understand the world that the author was witnessing. Twenty-nine of the books won the Pulitzer Prize. Seven authors won the Nobel Prize.
This gift is one of a limited edition of twelve hundred copies for presentation to her friends and fellow librarians, and people interested in western history and the world of books.
We are honored to receive this special edition. And we look forward to renewing acquaintance with some olds friends as we look over the list of good books waiting to be re-read.
Old books to new
"The Corrections" by Jonathan Frantzen is the latest Oprah's Book Club selection.
It is a comic, tragic story about a family breaking down in an age of easy fixes. It stretches from the Midwest to Wall Street, to Eastern Europe. It brings an old-fashioned world of civic virtue and sexual inhibitions into collision with today's values. It has been called, "Richly realistic, darkly hilarious, and deeply humane." It is all of that and more.
We thank Oprah Winfrey and the American Library Association for this continued gift of books through the year.
"The Essential Koran the Heart of Islam" translated and presented by Thomas Cleary is a timely addition to the collection. For Muslims the whole of the Qur'an is sacred, but there are certain passages which are more accessible to those seeking from the outside to understand its meaning. This translation has the virtue of making many such passages available in easily comprehensible language.
Bob and Carole Howard donated the audio edition of "John Adams" by David McCullough. It is read by Edward Herrmann. The running time is approximately nine hours.
The University of Colorado at Boulder sent a catalog for 2002. The catalog covers the World Wide Web listing of courses via the Internet and by print correspondence. Courses can be taken for professional noncredit, university credit, or high school credit. It is up to you to determine your pace of learning.
Fear of the unknown shouldn't panic us
We in our nation today are facing a crisis; the anthrax crisis; real biological terrorism. At this writing three have died, nine others are infected, and a nation ranges from mildly cautious to truly panicky. The fear is real because the crisis is real. One letter contaminated with a biological agent passing through at least two distribution centers and perhaps even more individual carriers or processors on its way from an origination point to its destination has the potential of infecting many, many people. Were there to be numerous contaminated letters posted, then there would be that many multiplied numbers potentially affected. And, as I read in the paper, with flu season just commencing, there already has been a run on emergency rooms of people wanting to find out if their flu-like symptoms are from an actual flu bug, or might they be experiencing the initial stages of an anthrax infection. While the flu may be uncomfortable for most, an anthrax infection can be deadly to anyone who contracts it.
So what should we as Christians feel and do about the reality that our nation is under attack by unseen killers? How should we respond in a world and a nation so shaken and stressed by the determined and deadly attack of a relative handful of evil individuals? Once again this is where our faith in God and our reliance upon the Word of God can assist us in the midst of terrible times.
One of the enduring qualities of the faith which God is trying to grow in us by the power of the Spirit of God is that of peace . . . and it is important to realize that this peace of God (that is, the peace given to us by God) is true serenity in the midst of turmoil; it does not have to be the best of what the world may give us, that is, peace only as an absence of turmoil. When the Apostle Paul begins many of his letters with "Grace and peace from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ," he is not just blowing smoke. Because in many of his letters, he's writing to people under true persecution, people who were not only in danger of losing their material possessions and perhaps their jobs, but people who were in real danger of losing their lives because of their faith in Christ and their refusal to deny Him and accept the pantheon of the Roman gods they were supposed to worship. This peace Paul was invoking for them was a supernatural peace found only in the God of the Bible.
Am I saying that we should ignore the reality of the possibilities of more national tragedies? Should we as Christians assume a Pollyanna stance, acting as though no pain can reach us? Not at all. My point is that the fear of the unknown should not panic us; should not render us incapable of living a joyous and productive life within the constraints of the circumstances of our time.
Certainly we should be concerned about ours and our loved ones' safety. Proper concern should prompt us to wise decisions, to proper preparation, to awareness and to being alert. But proper concern does not cause us to panic and to lose sight of God and His sovereignty in this world. "Greater is He who is in you," the scriptures say, "than he who is in the world." (I John 4:4). The Apostle Paul tells his son in the faith, Timothy, in his second letter to him that, "God has not given to us a spirit of fear, but a spirit of power, of love, and of a sound mind." (II Timothy 1:7) The writer to the Hebrews says that because God has said, "I will never leave you or forsake you," we can say with confidence, "The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can (mere) man do to me?" (Hebrews 13:5-6) And, of course, we're all familiar with the Shepherd-King, David's declaration in the 23rd Psalm that, "Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for Thou art with me; Thy rod and Thy staff, they comfort me."
My prayer for myself and for each of the readers of this newspaper is that we all shall feel the power and love and the sound mind that only God can give in the midst of the valley of the shadow of death. You see, He really is with us; He really can give us peace.
Rotary Club's winter coat program gets underways
The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs will be organizing their annual Operation Warm Coats again this year, sometime this month.
I know it's hard to think of winter, and coats when the weather has been so balmy. I'm encouraging you to search through your closets for donations of warm winter clothing for those in need. Set them aside. Next week's column will provide details on where donated items can be dropped off.
After you have cleaned out your closet and made some extra room, here's a way to fill up the space and boost the sluggish economy. Immaculate Heart of Mary Luncheon and Fashion Show will take place Saturday at noon in the Parish Hall. Although the flyer shows a statuesque damsel in beach garb, I know Pagosa appropriate fashion will be modeled and available for sale from local merchants. Tickets are available at the Chamber of Commerce only.
Local resident, Joe Donovan, will participate in the 2002 Olympics in Salt Lake City. Yes, it's awfully exciting and I'm so happy for Joe. So, the next question: Is Joe participating in an Olympic athletic event? No, he's not. Joe will carry the Olympic torch for a distance of about 1/4 mile instead. As many as 11,500 runners will carry the torch, and 4,000 runners will be selected by sponsors and the Olympic committee. The other 7,500 (of which Joe is one) were selected from 210,000 nominees.
The basis of nomination and selection is to find people who are "inspirational." Letters explaining why a nominee is inspirational written by the nominator were included with the nomination. Anyone could make a nomination, anyone could be nominated. Committees read the nomination letters and selected the 7,500 runners out of the 210,000 nominees. Joe was nominated, and letters of support were written by Jan, his wife, children and grandchildren. The support from his family members is very meaningful to Joe. He feels greatly honored and know that for the brief period that he's carrying the torch, he'll be the only person in the world doing it at that time.
Relaying the torch to start the Olympics has been a tradition since the 1936 Olympics. In 2002, the torch will be lit in Athens and flown to Atlanta, site of the last Olympics in the USA. From there it will be carried to Salt Lake City to open the winter Olympics. Enroute, the touch will pass through 46 states. Although the torch will run in all 46 states, at times the torch will be fast forwarded by auto or plane. For example, the torch will be flown to and from Alaska so it can be run in Alaska.
Joe will not know the specific 1/4-mile stretch that he'll be carrying the torch. No carriers will learn the area they will run in until three weeks prior to their participation. Carriers will only be told where to meet, and then vans will take the carriers to the actual places they will run. This is for security reasons. Joe and all other carriers will each have a support runner running with him/her, and two security runners. About 50 support vehicles will be in the procession in front of and behind the runners. Since carrying the torch is a symbolic and not an athletic competition, some of the carriers will be in wheel chairs, on crutches, and otherwise handicapped. Congratulations Joe. I know you will represent your family and Pagosa well when you hold aloft that burning Olympic torch.
PLPOA directors will hold their monthly meeting at 7 p.m. tonight in the Pagosa Lakes Clubhouse. Members and observers are encouraged to attend. Public comments will be heard at the beginning of the meeting.
Natalie Thomas owns and operates Columbine Deli and Catering, located at 162 Pagosa Street in the building at the rear.
Columbine Deli and Catering offers breakfast and lunch, eat in or take-out, Monday to Friday, 6 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The breakfast menu includes breakfast burritos, stuffed croissants and biscuits and gravy. On the lunch menu, with specials, are a wide variety of Philly cheesesteaks, hoagies, sandwiches and salads.
Columbine has a catering truck that can be called to job sites and businesses around the community and there is delivery of special orders available as well.
Eugene Herndon Smith, 80, passed away in Seattle, Wash., on Oct. 24, 2001. He had relocated to Seattle in March after 50 years as a resident of Idaho Falls.
Mr. Smith was born Jan. 9, 1921 in Denver, the first child of Ernest Eugene Smith and Ruby Herndon Smith. He lived his early years in Norwood and Pagosa Springs, Colo., graduating from Pagosa Springs High School in 1939, and then obtained a degree in petroleum engineering from Colorado School of Mines in Golden.
He achieved the rank of captain in the U.S. Army during World War II, serving in the Corps of Engineers. He performed with distinction in many battle campaigns, including Normandy, and received the Bronze Star.
He was married to Phyllis Burnett in Amarillo, Texas on Nov. 1, 1946. They divorced in 1977. He was employed by Phillips Petroleum in Borger, Texas and then relocated to Idaho Falls in 1951. He was a former reactor manager for Phillips and successive companies. He retired from WINCO in 1986. He was a caregiver to his parents in their later years in Idaho Falls.
Mr. Smith loved to travel and was an avid golfer. He was a member of the First Presbyterian Church and had served as a deacon. His outgoing personality won him many friends over the years.
He is survived by a daughter, Jann Smith of Aiken, S.C.; a son, Mark Smithsund of Seattle; a grandson, Brady Smithsund of Seattle; and a brother, Roland Smith, of Idaho Falls. He was a loving father, grandfather, son and brother and will be very much missed.
A memorial service in celebration of his life will be held in Idaho Falls, details to be announced later.