Front Page
July 25, 2002

Fear for family's safety leads to bear's death

By Richard Walter

Staff Writer

For the fourth time in less than a week, a bear was shot to death in the Aspen Springs community.

One of the bears, shot July 19, was estimated by Larry J. Garcia, Pagosa Springs South District wildlife manager, to be a yearling about 100-125 pounds.

It was felled by David Snarr after it prowled his yard then went to a neighbor's home where Snarr found it coming out a rear door it had broken in, dragging a garbage can.

Snarr called central dispatch asking for Division of Wildlife assistance with the animal after sighting it in his yard. At the time, two of the three local wildlife officers were out of the area and Garcia was on a call in Arboles.

Dispatchers told Snarr to try to scare the animal away.

He told Garcia he did so and that was when the animal ran toward his neighbor's home, downhill from his.

With his wife on the phone trying to warn neighbors the animal was approaching, Snarr got out his rifle and went outside in case it came back. He told Garcia his wife got no answer on the phone, so he went to the scene to warn the neighbors.

They were not home, but the bear was. As it came out, said Snarr, he yelled, trying to scare it away. He said it then charged him and, fearing for his well-being, he fired and felled the bear.

Snarr said his daughter had been playing outside when the bear arrived and the initial belief was that it was "just a large dog." But when he went out to investigate, Snarr said, "It was obviously a bear, not a dog. I was worried for the safety of the children in the area."

Garcia said the bear problem has been growing all summer. "We've had reports just about everywhere, particularly here in Aspen Springs. We know there's a sow and two cubs wandering the area here. I wouldn't be surprised if there aren't several dens up high."

The drought has caused the bears' food source to disappear, Garcia said. "They'll track smells looking for food.

"Even if you had bacon and eggs for breakfast, washed the dishes well, and put the scraps into a covered garbage can, the bear can smell it and is attracted," he said.

Food scraps, hummingbird feeders, bird seed, pet food - all are attractants to the home, Garcia said.

"The unfortunate part," he said, "is that in bear-human confrontations, the bear almost always loses. We keep trapping them, relocating them, but another takes the place of the first as our problem bear is moved out."

Bears lack both water and feed right now, Garcia said. "They're looking for anything to help them avoid starvation. Desperate humans will do exactly the same thing. The difference is we generally don't shoot them.

"There are natural and human conflict issues involved," Garcia said. "A father worried about his child's safety can be excused for that fear, but our concern is that residents not overreact."

The bear was resident in Pagosa Country long before any of the current residential developments were even dreams. That, Garcia said, makes them the early settlers here, not man.

"We know a bear is huge and can be dangerous," Garcia said. "Man, too, can be dangerous. We have to find a way they can exist with each other."

A new regulation that fines property owners for failure to remove bear attractants went into effect May 1. The regulation allows Division of Wildlife officers to issue tickets to people who fail to remove items that attract bears.

The regulation states: "No person shall fail to take remedial action to avoid conflicts with bears which may include the securing or removal of outdoor trash, cooking grills, pet food, bird feeders or any other similar food source or attractant, after being notified by the DOW that bears are in the area and advised to undertake such remedial action."

Failure to comply carries a $68 fine for each violation.

 

Four bruins shot in Aspen Springs, seven in county

By Richard Walter

Staff Writer

The fourth killing of a bear in Aspen Springs has Division of Wildlife agents disturbed.

On the weekend of July 13-14, probably on Saturday night, a 400-plus-pound boar was shot and killed and left at the scene on Beucler Drive.

Division of Wildlife agent Larry Garcia said his unit would like to find out who shot the bear and why.

"It was killed on private property and the owners of that property were known to be out of state at the time," he said.

The Division is deeply interested in the shooting and Garcia invited anyone who has any detail to contact Operation Game Thief at (800) 332-4155. Anonymity is guaranteed, he said.

Mike Reid, senior agent in the area, said a fourth shooting victim, a sow, was found this weekend and the animal's cubs removed to a rehabilitation facility in the San Luis Valley.

He said the four Aspen Springs shootings bring the total for the area to seven this season, none by department personnel.

"At least two were shot by civilians defending life or property," Reid said. "We'd like to know about the other two.

"The late freeze and ensuing food stream failure, followed by drought," has triggered the situation, he said. "Maybe some of the moisture we've received in the past few days will cause acorns and berries to ripen and the food search will return to something closer to normal."

He said animals are individuals and, "I can't tell you what they're going to do. It seems some people will allow them to be pests too long. They don't call us in order to keep the bear from getting that first strike."

 

Dialogue opens on feasibility of cloud seeding

By John M. Motter

Staff Writer

Things may be looking up in the skies over Pagosa Country. Cloud seeding may be in the air. At the very least, the idea is being studied.

Extreme local drought conditions are prompting examination of current and future water availability. Level 2 water rationing is being enforced, streamflow in the San Juan River is lower than anyone remembers, and the threat of catastrophic wildfire pervades local thinking.

Led by Fred Schmidt and the San Juan Water Conservancy District board of directors, citizens and organizations here are searching for water sources, long and short-term.

Cloud seeding is considered a short-term solution for the water shortage. Reservoir storage is considered the long-term solution.

"We feel like it is our responsibility to take the lead in looking for solutions to the water shortage problem," said Schmidt, president of the San Juan Water Conservancy District board. "Right now our goal is to educate people on these issues," he added.

The district levies a 0.351 mill levy on residents. It had a property tax income of $48,221 last year, derived from an assessed valuation of $137,381,770.

In past years, the district collected data on suitable water storage sites, Schmidt said. In addition, it has provided leadership and financial assistance to property owners restoring the lower Blanco River.

"We need to look at cloud seeding as a possible short-term solution to our shortage," Schmidt said. "Cloud seeding could possibly help build a snowpack during the coming winter."

Over an extended period of time, increased water storage needs to be studied, Schmidt said.

"Reservoirs take more time," he continued, "as many as 20 or 25 years to acquire land and permits, and perform the heavy construction needed."

The cost of cloud seeding and reservoir construction is a concern Schmidt hopes to meet by bringing together a coalition of concerned entities, including his district, the Southwest Water Conservancy District, the Pagosa Area Water and Sanitation District, Archuleta County, Pagosa Springs, and private organizations such as the Wolf Creek Ski Area , Pagosa Springs Golf Club, and others.

It has been suggested that downstream users such as Albuquerque and others might be persuaded to help with financing.

For now, Schmidt is attempting to bring local organizations together in order to examine the cost and potential benefits of cloud seeding. At the same time, Schmidt expects to help form a steering committee charged with developing an approach for increasing reservoir storage.

A mixed audience containing several local boards listened Monday as representatives of three professional cloud seeding companies explained how the process works. The professionals claim that, if clouds come, they can persuade rain to follow.

Included in the audience were members of the conservancy and water district boards, county commissioners and officials, town officials and private citizens.

Cloud seeding presentations were made by Don Griffith of Sandy, Utah, head of North American Weather Consultants; Larry Hjermstad, Durango, Western Weather Consultants LLC; and Albert Schnell, Pagosa Springs, Airao Enterprises.

Griffith and Hjermstad explained traditional winter cloud seeding methodology. Both have extensive, worldwide experience with weather modification. Griffith is currently heavily involved with cloud seeding in the mountains of Utah. Hjermstad is involved with cloud seeding currently taking place in the western San Juan Mountains. More recently, he has contracted to implement a weather modification program for Denver.

Schnell also has extensive weather modification experience gained around the world. His proposal featured a methodology based on a new, super-hygroscopic solution. Schnell offered a summer cloud seeding program used to augment a winter program.

All agreed that cloud seeding only works when clouds containing moisture are present. All agreed that the cloud seeding infusion must take place downwind from the target area. Because clouds containing moisture generally approach the San Juan Mountains near Pagosa Springs from the south-southwest, the seeding generators would be placed in the path of that approach.

All agreed that winter cloud seeding in the mountains is best accomplished with ground generators. Typically, silver iodide or a comparable solution is emitted by the ground generators. Preliminary estimates place the cost of a three-month winter seeding program using ground generators at about $65,000. A five-month program might cost $85,000.

Water produced on the ground in Utah by cloud seeding cost as little as $1 per acre foot, according to Griffith. Water increases ranging from 3 to 20 percent or more were reported by all of the presenters. Results seem to improve, the experts said, as the generators were placed directly in the path of winds approaching the target area.

Only 10 percent of the moisture in clouds is released naturally, Griffith said. All precipitation in the Pagosa Springs area forms initially as ice particles, he added.

There is considerable evidence to prove that removing moisture does not reduce downwind water availability in the atmosphere, according to Griffith. In fact, evidence shows that increased water may reach the ground as far as 200 miles downwind, he added.

Concern has been expressed over how removal of water from the atmosphere affects those living downwind from the target zone. More specifically, will cloud seeding near Pagosa Springs dry up the San Luis Valley?

All of the cloud seeding experts say they have data to show that won't happen.

Even so, John Showcroft, President of the Concerned Citizens for Preservation of Natural Resources in the San Luis Valley, begged the audience to "not consider cloud seeding." According to Showcroft, after cloud seeding during the summer of 1976, 1977 was the driest year ever in the San Luis Valley.

"I plead with you. Don't spend money foolishly, don't steal our water," Showcroft said.

Schmidt expects to arrange a meeting soon between his board, the water and sanitation district board, and others to gain approval to seek specific proposals from the weather modification experts.

 

Lightning triggers 13 morefires in Archuleta County

By Tess Noel Baker

Staff Writer

Recent lightning in Archuleta County started at least 13 new wildfires since July 18, according to Rick Jewell, environmental coordinator with the Pagosa Ranger District.

Storms rolling through town Tuesday night started at least three fires in the area. Jewell said by Wednesday morning, crews responded to small fires on Eight Mile Mesa, near Turkey Springs Road and near Sheep Creek off First Fork Road.

"That's it so far, but there may be more pop up today as things dry out," he said Wednesday.

All other fires have been controlled and no structures were threatened. The largest of last week's fires, near Blue Creek on County Road 336 in the Upper Blanco Basin area, was five acres in size. Forty-six firefighters worked to suppress the blaze with the help of two helicopters with buckets, one air attack plane, two engines and one water tender.

Pagosa officially received .20 of an inch of rain over the last week, little help in the face of the drought. Extreme fire conditions still persist throughout the area and San Juan National Forest fire restrictions remain in effect, Jewell said.

Fire Chief Warren Grams said members of the Pagosa Fire Protection District responded to a few lightning strikes over the past week. Most of the fires started by the strikes were confined to a single tree.

 

Search team recovers man injured in 50-foot fall

By Tess Noel Baker

Staff Writer

A Pagosa Springs man who fell 50 feet down a cliff was hauled back to safety by Archuleta County search and rescue personnel Wednesday.

John Angyus, 21, had apparently been fishing along the West Fork of the San Juan River most of Tuesday. Sgt. Karn Macht, search and rescue coordinator, said Angyus was hiking above a creek, spotted another good fishing hole and started down the rocks when he fell, shattering a knee and possibly breaking other bones.

That was about 5 p.m. Three hours later, hikers in the area heard Angyus' calls and went for help. Mineral County emergency personnel responded first, then called for mutual aid from Archuleta County.

Macht said about six Archuleta County search and rescue team members arrived at the Rainbow Trail trailhead about 1:30 a.m. Wednesday. They joined two Mineral County deputies and an emergency medical technician from Creede. Rescuers hiked about three fourths of a mile up the Rainbow Trail to find Angyus.

At the scene, team members discovered that it wouldn't work to pull Angyus up at the same spot he went over. Macht said they used almost every inch of two 300-foot ropes to pull the injured man up about 250 feet. By this time, Colorado Mounted Rangers and other search and rescue team members had arrived. Angyus was carried out to waiting emergency medical personnel and transported to Mercy Medical Center in Durango about 10 a.m. Wednesday. At 3:30 p.m., Angyus' condition was stable and he was scheduled for surgery to repair a broken right knee and leg.

During the rescue, Macht was also injured. He was working his way along a scree field on a steep slope when the rocks gave way, and he tumbled down about 20 feet, suffering a possible broken nose and lacerations to his face. The force of the fall cracked his helmet.

Early voting for Aug. 13 primary election begins Aug. 5

By John M. Motter

Staff Writer

Early voting for the Aug. 13 primary election begins Aug. 5 and lasts through Aug. 9, according to June Madrid, the Archuleta County Clerk and voting official.

Early voting ballots may be cast between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. on those dates at the county clerk's office located at 449 San Juan St. in Pagosa Springs.

Only the names of candidates for county elected offices will appear on the ballot. Those offices are county commissioner District 3, county sheriff, county clerk, county treasurer, county assessor, county coroner, and county surveyor.

Candidates who have no opponents or who receive the most votes in the primary election, will advance to the Nov. 5 general election. Only one candidate per party can advance from the primary election to the November general election.

This year's unopposed candidates are all Republican. They are: county clerk - June Madrid; county assessor - Keren Prior; county coroner - Carl Macht; and county surveyor - Dave Maley.

Entered in the county commissioner District 3 race are Republican incumbent Gene Crabtree and Democratic challenger Mamie Lynch.

Two Republicans are entered in the race for treasurer. They are incumbent Traves Garrett and challenger Pam Eaton.

In the race for county sheriff, Republican incumbent Tom Richards is being challenged by Republican write-in candidate Larry Bass. Bass' name will not appear on the ballot. Instead a line allotted for write-ins will appear. In front of the line will be a small circle. In order for the computer to scan and read the write-in name, the small circle must be filled in.

Regular primary and general election voting will be conducted at appointed polling places. Counting will be done by computers.

Those who want to learn if they are eligible to vote in the local election should call the Archuleta County Clerk, 264-5633.

Weather

Week's rainfall tops May-June total; more due

By John M. Motter

Staff Writer

One-fifth of an inch of rain fell in Pagosa Springs last week.

That doesn't sound like much, but it is more rain than fell locally during the combined months of May and June.

Total July rainfall in town through 7 a.m. Tuesday amounts to 0.40 inches, still far below the July average rainfall total of 1.63 inches. The forecast for the coming week shows some probability of filling the void.

There is a 30-percent chance for afternoon and evening showers and thunderstorms virtually every day during the coming week, according to Jim Daniels, a forecaster from the National Weather Service office in Grand Junction.

Daytime temperatures should peak at between 85 and 90 degrees, Daniels said. Nighttime lows should bottom in the low 50s.

The expected moisture is coming from the south, according to Daniels, but not because of true monsoon conditions. By Monday, a Pacific airflow coming across Oregon and Washington will reach northern Colorado ending the probability of rainfall in that area. Southwest Colorado, including the Pagosa Springs area, may continue to receive moisture from the south.

Coming next is the normally wettest month of the year. August precipitation as measured in town has averaged 2.52 inches over the past 56 years. The maximum August rainfall was 5.36 inches recorded in 1992. The August low was 0.02 inches recorded in 1950.

The most precipitation ever recorded here during one month was 7.8 inches during October of 1972. During November of 1978, 6.84 inches of rain were recorded in town.

Maximum rainfall in town for a year was the 33.86 inches recorded in 1957. The minimum total for a year was 10.44 inches recorded during 1950. So far this year, 2.02 inches of precipitation have been measured in town. The average annual rainfall in Pagosa Springs for the past 49 years is 19.37 inches.

Local climate data is measured at the U.S. Weather Bureau recording station located at Stevens Field. Historic weather data used by The SUN is supplied by the Colorado Climate Center, Atmospheric Science Department, at Colorado State University in Fort Collins.

 

Date High Low Precipitation

Type Depth Moisture

7/17 85 46 - - -

7/18 82 48 - - -

7/19 84 48 - - -

7/20 83 46 - - -

7/21 85 47 - - -

7/22 83 48 R .04 .04

7/23 81 49 R .16 .16

 

  Sports Page

Parks & Rec

A's win Bambino tourney; stars shine in Monte

By Joe Lister Jr.

SUN Columnist

The youth baseball tournament finished July 18 with the Athletics, led by their coach, Jim Henderson, taking first place.

The Indians, coached by Val Valentine, had the best regular season record, 7-1, and looked as if they'd cruise to a tournament victory. But it was the Athletics who got the best of them in third round play, pushing the Indians into the losers' bracket of the double elimination tournament.

With the victory, the A's earned a berth in the championship game, but had to await the outcome of the Rockies-Indians game to see who their foe would be.

The Rockies defeated the Rookies' all-star team in a very close game that put the winner into the fifth round against the Indians. The Rockies, led by David Cammack and Mike Kraetsch, got an 11-8 victory over the Indians that earned them a berth in the championship clash.

That game was all Athletics. The well-rested squad defeated the Rockies, 18-9.

Congratulations to all the teams and participants in this season's tournament and thank you to all the volunteer coaches.

Monte Vista winners

Pagosa sent two all-star teams to the Monte Vista tournament last weekend. The 9-10 stars were defeated in two games but played well.

The Bambino team, in 11-12 competition, did very well, finishing first in the double elimination tournament with wins over teams from Del Norte, Alamosa, South Fork and Monte Vista, battling back from the losers' bracket to go all the way.

Congratulations to the Bambino all-star team and their coaches, Jim Henderson, Josh Lloyd and Justin Caler.

Look for complete coverage of the tournament in next week's article about the champions from Pagosa Springs.

Youth soccer

The time is now to register your kids for youth soccer. Ages for this program are 5-12. Registration forms can be picked up at Town Hall; registration deadline is Aug. 23.

Important dates to remember are the Aug. 20 coaches' meeting, the start of practice Aug. 26, games beginning Sept. 10, and tournament play opening the third week of October.

Teams from Dulce may enter this program and games could be played Saturdays as well as the traditional Tuesdays and Thursdays.

For additional information, call Chris Corcoran at 264-4151, Ext. 232.

Bicycle tour

Crews were busy Monday setting up Town Park, the junior high school and Hermosa Street for a visit by The Bicycle Tour of Colorado.

Hosting the event is a tribute to the whole crew because these bicycle tours look for communities with nice, clean facilities. Pagosa Springs is such a nice stop for these folks that they keep coming back.

Our parks withstood another 1,500 people, plus vendors, with no complaints from the riders.

When we live in such a great place, with well-maintained parks, hot springs and a river, we get a lot of people wanting to come enjoy the things we take for granted.

So, our thought for the week is: Go enjoy a picnic, float in the river, use the playgrounds. Go enjoy what everyone else in Colorado is experiencing - Pagosa Springs. What a great place to visit.

Skate park

There is plenty of action at South Pagosa Park with four obstacles being used heavily. With a little luck, with our volunteer help and the weather, we will have the full-blown skate park operating by mid-August.

Raw water irrigation

With all the watering restrictions in place, Town Park is being watered from a raw water feed directly out of the San Juan River. We are in the final stage of going out for bids on a second phase of the raw water irrigation program which will include all the high school athletic fields as well as the future multi-use recreation park planned east of 5th Street, across from Golden Peaks Stadium.

Fishing

The ponds in River Center Park have been stocked and fishing is good on power bait and worms. Early morning and late evening have proved to be the best times. Come and try one of our hidden parks. You won't be sorry.

Park Fun

Our special guest Friday will be Pagosa Springs Fire Protection District. They will bring a fire truck which is always enjoyable and educational for everyone.

Fire safety will be the topic and we are always thankful that we have such a great fire department sharing in the education of our youth.

Park Fun has been a great success this year and will be in operation for about one more month. Bring your young ones by for the day and enjoy summer.

We meet weekdays only at the Intermediate School.

Please enjoy our parks, but abide by all rules. Everyone can enjoy the parks more if we pick up after our pets and ourselves.

If you have problems or complaints, contact Joe Lister Jr. at 264-4151, Ext. 231.

 

Parelli to match 'whisperer' technique

against two other professional trainers

Horse enthusiasts, film buffs and budding movie stars won't want to miss the first-ever "In a Whisper Challenge," where three acclaimed horse whisperers face off to gentle and hopefully saddle three unbroken colts. One of the participants will be Pat Parelli, of Pagosa Springs.

This one-of-a-kind horse training and simultaneous documentary filming will be in the heart of downtown Fort Worth's Sundance Square at the Chisholm Trail Mural parking lot.

"In a Whisper Challenge" pairs three famous horse clinicians - Parelli, Josh Lyons and Craig Cameron - with green (unbroken) colts with the goal of each gentleman naturally calming one horse through psychology, communication and understanding.

Within just four hours, each individually penned competitor will be expected to complete a challenge course with points assessed for each task completed and each obstacle overcome. Three judges will determine the winning clinician and horse team at the end of the evening.

The event begins at 5 p.m. Aug. 3. Tickets are $20 in advance and are available through Ticketmaster, www.ticketmaster.com. Admission is free for children under 12.

The unique underlying foundation of horse-whisperer training is based upon body language, personal temperament, patience, kindness and affection for animals. Many horse owners claim their once unruly animal now maintains dramatic changes made solely through the work of a horse whisperer, with some having shown significantly more gentle behaviors within the first hour of training.

Parellis featured at Denver horse show next March

Highlighting the 2003 daytime events at National Western Stock Show Complex next March will be renowned equine behaviorists Linda and Pat Parelli, Olympic medalists Karen and David O'Connor, and cutting horse legend Leon Harrel.

There will be spectacular breed performances, retail and association exhibitions, educational lectures and demonstrations.

Hours at the Denver show are Friday and Saturday, 9 a.m.-7 p.m., Sunday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. The general admission fee is $10.

An evening performance with the Parellis and O'Connors is set 7-10 p.m. March 14. An evening performance March 15 will feature Pat Parelli and Leon Harrel from 7-10 p.m. Evening performances are an additional and separate admission fee.

For more information, call (303) 292-4981 or visit www.rocky mountainhorseexpo.com.

No cow elk licenses sold over

the counter; brochure erred

As in past years, the Colorado Division of Wildlife will not sell over-the-counter cow elk licenses for the 2002 seasons, despite a misprint on Page 27 of the 2002 Big Game Brochure that indicated they were available. The Elk Licenses Fees box listed a fee of $250 for nonresident over-the-counter cow elk licenses.

The Division has never sold over-the-counter cow elk licenses, because biologists want to keep track of how many cows are in each game management unit in order to maintain viable breeding populations. Some units already are at objective for cow elk, so over-the-counter cow licenses would be problematic, since they are unlimited in number and could be used in an area where cows did not need to be culled.

However, leftover cow elk licenses that were not taken in the drawing will go on sale at Division of Wildlife offices beginning Aug. 13.

This is the first year the Division has had a price difference between cow and bull elk licenses for nonresident hunters because Colorado's elk herd is over-objective, and more cows need to be harvested.

Last year, the price for both a nonresident bull elk license and a nonresident cow elk license was $450. This year, the price for a nonresident cow elk license is $250; the bull license price is $470.

Two holes-in-one at Ladies Pine Cone Classic

By Sally Bish

Special to The SUN

The Pagosa Springs Women's Golf Associations' Pine Cone Classic was a huge success again this year with women from several different states in town to play in the tournament July 9-10. Dry conditions could not keep 100 women away.

The annual event is a four-person team, two best ball tournament.

Six Pagosa teams came in winners. In the first flight, Julie Pressley, Jane Day, Debbie Hart and Marilyn Smart won first net with a 239. Jane Stewart, Kathy Giordano, Bonnie Hoover and Pam Lewis were second with a 246.

First gross in the second flight with a 337 went to Jan Kilgore, Maxine Pechin, Lynne Allison and Pat Criss. Lee Wilson, Dottie Eichvalds, Ann White and Genie Roberts won first net with a 243.

Third flight winners were Carrie Weisz, Audrey Johnson, Sue Marten and Sharon Utz with 346 for a second-place finish for low gross and Marilyn Pruter, Loretta Campuzano, Sheila Rogers and Kamra Salisbury winning first net with a 239.

Two ladies won in special events. Jane Day won closest to the pin on Ponderosa 8 for the 1-18 handicap flight. Jay Wilson won closest to the pin on Pinon 3 in the 19-36 handicap flight.

Cruise Planners offered a cruise for anyone making a hole-in-one on Ponderosa 8. Last year was difficult to top with four holes-in-one being made in the two-day tournament and two of those being on the cruise hole.

This year, we had two ladies making holes-in-one, each of them winning 36 dozen golf balls. Katy Threat aced No. 2 Ponderosa Tuesday which also gave her closest to the pin for the 19-36 handicapped flight. And Lee Wilson aced No. 3 Pinon. We had two very excited ladies even though this was not a first for either of them.

While golf was the main issue, the ladies enjoyed a great breakfast at the clubhouse both days. A lovely cocktail party and dinner was held Tuesday evening at the home of Bonnie and Earl Hoover who have graciously offered their beautiful home on this occasion for several years. Mary Jo Coulahan did a fantastic job catering the affair.

The awards luncheon was held at Timbers following play Wednesday.

In an earlier event - Flag Day play July 1- with the red, white and blue waving proudly, Jane Day took first place on Pinon No. 2 green. Second place went to Loretta Compuzano on the No. 2 Pinon tee box. Barbara Boggess placed third in the hole on No. 1 Pinon, Nickie Lepke made fourth-place honors three inches from the hole in No. 1 Pinon and Julie Pressley won fifth place four inches from the hole on No.1 Pinon.

 Inside The Sun
Archuleta County Fair Schedule

Thursday, Aug. 1

4-H inside projects judged 8-11 a.m.

Fair opens 9 a.m.

Vendors open 9:30 a.m.-8 p.m.

Carnival open 10 a.m.-10 p.m.

4-H Poultry/Rabbits entered 11 a.m.

Beer Garden open noon-10 p.m.

4-H Swine Weigh-in 2 p.m.

4-H Steer Weigh-in 2:30 p.m.

4-H Goat Weigh-in 3 p.m.

South West Ag. childrens tractor train rides 3-8 p.m.

Taste of Pagosa 3-9 p.m.

Melange 3-9 p.m.

Food Vendors closed during Taste of Pagosa 3-9 p.m.

4-H Lamb Weigh-in 3:30 p.m.

Exhibit Hall open to public 6-9 p.m.

4-H Non-market Goat Show 6 p.m.

Friday, Aug. 2

4-H Market Swine Show 8:30 a.m.

Fair opens 9 a.m.

Exhibit Hall open 9 a.m.-8 p.m.

Vendors open 9:30 a.m.-8 p.m.

Public servant's honored 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

Carnival open 10 a.m.-10 p.m.

South West Ag. childrens tractor train rides

10 a.m-8 p.m.

Weaving Demonstration by Suzy Belt 10 a.m.

Wade Henry Variety Act 10:30 a.m.

Frank Popovich Magic Act 11 a.m.

4-H Market Goat Show 11 a.m.

Chicken judging 11 a.m.

Beer Garden open 11 a.m.-midnight

Bubble Gum Contest 11:30 a.m.

Scrapbooking demonstration by Carla Shaw

11:30 a.m.

Rubberstamping demonstration by Carla Shaw noon

Spindy 500 Contest noon

Sand Castle Contest 12:30 p.m.

San Juan Fishermen Concert 12:30 p.m.

Frank Popovich Magic Act 1 p.m.

Potato Race 1 p.m.

Hula Hoop Contest 1:30 p.m.

Warron Big Eagle on guitar 1:30 p.m.

4-H Rabbit Showmanship 1:30 p.m. Wade Henry Variety Act 2 p.m. Hustling Huskers Contest 2 p.m.

Pie Eating Contest 2:30 p.m.

4-H Rabbit Judging 2:30 p.m. Apple Bobbing Contest 3 p.m.

Egg Toss Contest 3:30 p.m.

Wade Henry Variety Act 4 p.m. Colgate Country Showdown 4-7 p.m.

Honoree award ceremony 5:30 p.m. 4-H Market Steer Show 5:30 p.m. Wade Henry Variety Act 6 p.m. Bad Moon Rodeo 7 p.m. Warron Big Eagle on guitar 8 p.m.

Saturday, Aug. 3

4-H Market Lamb Show 8:30 a.m. Fair opens 9 a.m.

Horseshoe pitching 9 a.m.

Exhibit Hall open 9 a.m.-8 p.m.

Vendors open 9:30 a.m.-8 p.m.

Public servants honored 10 a.m.-5 p.m. South West Ag. childrens tractor train rides

10 a.m.-8 p.m.

Carnival open 10 a.m.-10 p.m.

Barefoot Dance Company 10 a.m. Felting Demonstration by Suzy Belt 10 a.m. Digging for Buried Treasure 10 a.m.

Frank Popovich Magic Act 10:30 a.m. Ladies Nail Driving Contest 10:30 a.m.

Warren Phipps, Ventriloquist 11a.m. Lemonade 11 a.m.

4-H Livestock Round Robin 11 a.m. Beer Garden open 11 a.m.-midnight

Barefoot Dance Company 11:30 a.m.

Frank Popovich Magic Act 11:30 a.m.

Stick Horse Barrel Racing 11:30 a.m.

Wade Henry Variety Act noon

Bat Race noon

3-Legged Race 12:30 p.m.

Warron Big Eagle on guitar 12:30 p.m.

Frank Popovich Magic Act 1 p.m. Needle in a Haystack 1 p.m.

Airbrush/temporary tattoo demonstration by Cindy Carothers 1:30 p.m.

Warron Big Eagle on guitar 2 p.m.

Wade Henry Variety Act 2 p.m.

Blind Man Tractor Race 2 p.m.

Baby Contest 3 p.m.

Mother/Daughter Look Alike 3:30 p.m.

Father/Son Look Alike 3:30 p.m.

Wade Henry Variety Act 4 p.m.

Best Dressed Cowboy/Cowgirl 5 p.m.

Best Beard Contest 5 p.m.

Ugliest Boots Contest 5 p.m.

4-H Chuck Wagon BBQ 5 p.m.

Wade Henry Variety Act 6 p.m.

4-H Livestock Auction 7 p.m.

Country Western dance with the Southern Comfort Band 9-midnight

Sunday, Aug. 4

4-H Horse Show 8 a.m.-noon

Pancake breakfast 8:30 a.m.

Fair opens 9 a.m.

Praise and worship 9 a.m.

Vendors open 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m.

Kids' Rodeo 10 a.m.

4-H Livestock Record Book interview

10 a.m.-1:30 p.m.

South West Ag. childrens tractor train rides

10 a.m.-4 p.m.

Exhibit Hall open 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

Carnival open 10 a.m.-10 p.m.

Chili Cook-off noon

Beer Garden open noon-6 p.m.

Demolition Derby 2 p.m.

 

Precision movement of cast, props important to 'Meet Me In St. Louis'

By John Graves

Special to The PREVIEW

There's no time for "Pagosa Time" backstage during the Music Boosters' production of "Meet Me In St. Louis."

Everything and everyone has to be in the precise right place at the precise right time. Curtains must rise and lower on cue, while special effects of lighting and sound must occur at specific points in the performance.

Actors must be ready, in position, and in the right costume for their entrances on stage. So whose responsibility is this daunting, demanding task? For this challenging musical production, the position of stage manager is being filled most ably by Linda Bennett.

Michael DeWinter, who directed "You Can't Take It with You," is not only a creative pillar of Music Boosters for the masterful sets he designs and builds, but also for the elaborate, authentic costumes he is able to muster representing any period in history (and seemingly in any amount).

For "Meet Me In St. Louis," in addition to building a vintage trolley car, he has assembled, and inspired, a 12-member sewing circle. These skilled needleworkers spend many hours a day creating new 1900-era ensembles from Michael's sketches, as well as altering costumes from previous productions.

For those who cannot attend evening performances in the high school auditorium, there will be a special matinee Aug. 18, at 2 p.m. The 7:30 p.m. performances will be on August 16, 17, 22, 23 and 24.

Reserved seat tickets are available at The Plaid Pony (731-5262) and Moonlight Books (264-5666) at $12 for adults and $10 for students and seniors with a Senior Center card.

Zubot and Dawson, Hurst and Raines, noted duos scheduled for Folk Festival

By Crista Munro

Special to The PREVIEW

In less than six weeks the gates will be opening on the annual Four Corners Folk Festival here in Pagosa Springs. The all-star lineup continues with this week's profile of double duets: Jim Hurst and Missy Raines, and Zubot and Dawson.

Guitarist Jim Hurst and bassist Missy Raines are two of today's most creative and compelling performers in acoustic music. Their unique sound is both sensitive and powerful. Together, they draw on their varied musical experiences to create a diverse blend of original, new acoustic, bluegrass, swing and country blues.

Missy Raines was voted Bass Player of the Year by the International Bluegrass Music Association for 1998, 1999, 2000 and 2001. She was also named the 1999 Bass Fiddle Player of the Year by the Society for the Preservation of Bluegrass Music in America and Bluegrass Now magazine readers voted Missy the 1999 Fans' Choice Bass Player. Missy's solo recording "My Place in the Sun" was named one of the top five bluegrass recordings of 1998 by the Chicago Tribune. It was also nominated for Instrumental Album of the Year in 1999. Whether it's blues, jazz, big-band swing or her most familiar home in bluegrass music, Missy Raines appears equally at ease.

Jim Hurst is the International Bluegrass Music Association 2001 Guitar Player of the Year. He was featured on the cover of the January/February 1999 issue of Flatpicking Guitar magazine. Together with Missy, he has toured with many top artists such as Trisha Yearwood and Holly Dunn, and most recently was featured on Sara Evans' recording "No Place That Far," which climbed to No.1 on the Billboard chart. Jim has an attractive vocal delivery with his songs, but it takes a back seat to his incredible flatpicking guitar work.

As a duo, these two musicians' ability to cross genres with their music is evidenced in their recent release "Two," which has been widely acclaimed. Jim Hurst and Missy Raines will play the main stage Sept. 1 at 10:30 a.m.

Zubot and Dawson is an acoustic instrumental group from Vancouver featuring Jesse Zubot on violin and mandolin and Steve Dawson on guitar, dobro and Weissenborn slide. Their music is (like many of the folk festival acts) a bit hard to define. It seems to fall most often into the "roots" category, which is accurate in that the band is influenced by many traditional styles. But these two prefer to warp, intertwine and reassemble those influences into original songs resulting in a type of music they call "strang."

Bluegrass, blues and pop forms are stretched and reconstructed with jazz, ethnic, rock and swing sensibilities to create a surprising and intricate music that has one foot on solid ground and the other in the ether. While the sound is distinctly acoustic, the pair makes subtle and imaginative use of a number of effects - like a wah-wah on the acoustic slide - to produce interesting musical textures. Throw virtuosic instrumental skill into the mix and the result is a sound that has been endearing them to folk, jazz and rock audiences in Canada, the United States and Europe since the duo's inception four years ago.

Part of the reason for the very positive response to both of their albums -"Strang" and "Tractor Parts - Further Adventures in Strang" - may be that, while the duo's music is consistently adventurous, its melodic and singable hooks make it accessible and attractive to listeners who are not necessarily jazz, bluegrass or even acoustic music fans.

Zubot and Dawson will play their first set on the Summit Stage Aug. 30 and another set on the Main Stage at 11:45 a.m. Saturday.

The Four Corners Folk Festival is supported by a grant from the Colorado Council on the Arts. The Colorado Council on the Arts and its activities are made possible through an annual appropriation from the Colorado General Assembly and federal funds from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Tickets may be purchased locally at Moonlight Books downtown and at Wolf Tracks Coffee and Books in the Pagosa Country Center west of town.

For additional information or to purchase tickets with a credit card, visit www.folkwest.com or call 731-5582.

 

'Missing' streets are on assessor's maps

By Richard Walter

Staff Writer

A misunderstanding of a single word gave some the impression the county assessor's office was not aware of all the missing streets discussed in a story last week.

Marcus Baker, an associate planner for the county, told county commissioners all the 120 streets in question are missing from the Landmark Services list, but all are on the assessor's list. The SUN inadvertently changed the word "all" concerning the assessor's list to "some."

Baker said the streets are missing from the GPS mapping done for the county, not from the assessor's maps. He has been assigned to update the GPS maps, using aerial photo overlays to hand-digitize the missing roadways onto cartographic presentations.

County Assessor Keren Prior said her department has "the most complete mapping system available and updates it regularly in order to properly assess all properties in the county."

The GPS mapping, Baker said, will make it easier in the long run for everyone using county map books, particularly those using 9-1-1 emergency call services.

 

Pagosa Springs Enterprises to hold annual meeting

Pagosa Springs Enterprises Inc., organizer and sponsor of the annual Red Ryder Roundup Rodeo, will hold its annual meeting and election of officers at 7 p.m. Aug. 15 in the Archuleta County Fair building.

Three directors are to be elected to three-year terms, and only certificate holders of record on June 30 will be entitled to vote. Proxy votes must be in writing, designating the person who is to cast the vote, and must be presented to a member of the corporation.

The maximum number of proxies any individual can represent is 10. Any certificate holder may call any board member for further details or to submit their proxy.

Current board members are Jim Bramwell, president; Steve DeVorss, vice president; Terri House, secretary; J.R. Ford, treasurer; and Diane Pack, Mike Ray and Craig Kamps, directors.

Expiring terms are those of Bramwell, DeVorss and Ford.

 

Forest restrictions are still in effect

By John M. Motter

Staff Writer

Fire restrictions remain in effect in Archuleta County and throughout southwest Colorado despite afternoon rains during the past few days.

Wildfire conditions are being monitored daily by county and U.S. Forest Service officials. The danger of wildfire in the county remains extremely high. Consequently, no changes have been made in restrictions during the past week.

Drought conditions remain Exceptional in the Four Corners area, according to a report prepared by a group of national weather monitoring organizations. Exceptional is the driest, most extreme classification available for defining drought conditions.

Streamflow in the San Juan River as measured in Pagosa Springs reached about 28 cubic feet per second Tuesday, an increase of almost 10 cfs over the reading July 17.

In addition to county restrictions, fires are also banned on federal lands operated by the Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management.

A fire pre-evacuation alert ordered by the county sheriff also remains in effect. The alert advises local citizens to maintain a packed bag and be prepared to evacuate should evacuation orders be issued at any future date. The bag should be filled with required medicines and other personal effects that might be needed if a few days are spent away from home.

After packing, citizens are advised to go about business as usual. Evacuation will not be necessary unless three blasts are heard from an official vehicle, or unless an official representative of the sheriff's office or fire department knocks on the door and says get out.

In general, the fire bans prohibit outside open flames of any kind and allows smoking inside enclosed buildings or closed vehicles.

The Forest Service has several additional requirements governing activity on government lands. For a detailed list call the Pagosa Ranger District Office at 264-2268.

A portion of the San Juan National Forest located north of U.S. 160 and stretching west from First Notch Road to the Animas River remains closed to unauthorized personnel.

Overnight camping in areas outside of designated wilderness is allowed only in developed campgrounds staffed by an on-duty host. Backcountry dispersed camping is allowed only within the Weminuche, Lizard Head, and South San Juan wilderness areas.

All motorized vehicles must remain on roads designated as open on National Forest and BLM visitors' maps and not closed by barriers or gates. No motorized vehicles, such as all-terrain vehicles, motorcycles, or four-wheel drives are allowed on trails or off of open roads.

Daytime parking is allowed on National Forest and BLM lands only in designated parking areas or immediately adjacent to open roads in areas free of hazardous fuels. Overnight parking is allowed only in developed campgrounds with a resident host and at Wilderness trailhead parking areas.

Chain saw use for firewood, posts or pole cutting is prohibited. Firewood cutting with hand saws is allowed.

Smoking is prohibited except inside an enclosed building or vehicle. Smoking outdoors, even in a cleared area, is prohibited.

Building, maintaining, attending, or using a fire, campfire, charcoal broiler, or a coal or wood-burning stove is prohibited everywhere, including inside fire grates in developed recreation areas. Petroleum-fueled stoves and lanterns are allowed, but should be used with extreme caution.

Use of explosives, welding, or acetylene or other torches with an open flame is prohibited.

Authorized commercial logging operations may only operate from 1 a.m.-noon and must include increased safety precautions.

Commercial mechanical fuels treatment operations have been canceled.

Oil and gas operations are required to take extra fire prevention measures, including use of high capacity water pumper trucks, fire extinguishers, fire spotters, and emergency preparedness plans.

Fireworks of any kind are completely prohibited.

An insert, "Living With Fire: A Guide for the Homeowner," produced by a consortium of state and federal agencies, has been placed in copies of this week's SUN distributed to local readers. The insert is not included with out-of-county subscriptions.

Humans inhabit bear country and more confrontations arise

By Richard Walter

Staff Writer

Colorado Division of Wildlife personnel have a brochure designed for this time of year, the time when bear/human encounters are a regular happening.

They note bears have had a home in Colorado since their earliest ancestors evolved in North America and that the large, powerful animals play an important role in the ecosystem. When drought such as has been experienced in Archuleta County for the past year is a factor, the confrontation season comes earlier and more frequently.

Today, increasing numbers of people routinely live and play in bear country, resulting in more bear/human encounters. For many people, wildlife officers point out, seeing a bear is the highlight of an outdoor experience.

Learning about bears and their habits will help the human portion of the equation more fully appreciate these unique animals and the habitat in which they live.

The first lesson is: Don't feed any wildlife.

If you choose to live, or have a summer home, in bear country, make sure you don't contribute to resident bears becoming "garbage" bears. Most conflicts between bears and people are linked to careless handling of food or garbage.

Don't let your carelessness cause the unnecessary death of a bear or result in human injury or death. Learn to live responsibly with wildlife.

Black bears are the most common and generally the smallest of the North American bears. Others include the grizzly, brown and polar bears. Today, only the black bear is known to exist in Colorado though there is a move afoot to reintroduce the grizzly.

There is no exact count of the number of black bears in the state, but estimates range from 8,000 to 12,000. A black bear may live 20 years in the wild and up to 25-30 years in captivity.

Black bears are very agile, can run in bursts of up to 35 miles per hour and can run up or down hills quickly and easily. Their short, curved claws help them to climb trees and they are strong swimmers.

Threats to black bears include accidents, disease, motor vehicles and starvation. Natural enemies are responsible for the deaths of most black bears: loss of habitat, feeding, illegal killing, destruction of bears that pose a threat to people or livestock and property.

Black bears eat almost anything. They will eat human food, garbage, hummingbird food and pet and livestock food when available.

Once the bear has found the easily accessible, consistent food source that human settlements can offer, it may overcome its wariness of people and visit regularly, increasing the chance of a human/bear encounter.

You and your neighbors can make a difference. Your actions may prevent the unnecessary death of a bear.

- Make your property safe by keeping garbage out of reach and smell of bears. Use bearproof trash containers. Be sure garbage cans are emptied regularly. Periodically, clean garbage cans to reduce residual odor - using hot water and chlorine bleach or by burning. Store trash in a bearproof enclosure. Contact the Division of Wildlife for designs.

- If you have pets, do not store their food or feed them outside. Clean your barbecue grill of grease and store inside. Hang bird seed, suet and hummingbird feeders on a high wire between trees instead of on your deck or porch. Bring all bird feeders in at night. Do not put fruit, melon rinds or other food items in mulch or compost piles.

- As you might guess, beehives attract bears. You can protect your bees, honey and equipment if you surround the hives with fences designed to keep bears out. Contact the Division of Wildlife for designs.

- Most bears sighted in residential areas within bear habitat do not cause any damage. If a bear doesn't find abundant food, it will move on.

Physical Appearance

Ursus americanus, meaning "American black bear" is the bear's scientific name. Despite the common name - black bear - they may be honey-colored, blond, brown or black. They may have a tan muzzle or a white spot on their chest. Most Colorado black bears are some shade of brown and they sometimes appear cinnamon-colored, leading some people to mistake them for grizzly bears.

A black bear's body appears heavy and is supported by short powerful legs. The highest point of a black bear is the lower middle of its back. Thee is no prominent shoulder hump as there is on the larger grizzly bear.

Black bears vary in size and weight, with males generally being larger than females. Adult males average 275 pounds. Depending on the season, food supply and gender, they may weigh anywhere from 125 to 450 pounds. Black bears measure about 3 feet high when on all four feet or about 5 feet tall standing upright.

Signs and sounds

Black bear tracks are very distinctive - the hind footprint resembles that of a human. All bears have five toes, with the front foot short and about 4-5 inches wide. The hind foot is long and narrow, measuring about 7 inches. Claw marks may or may not be visible.

Bears use trails just as people do since it's easier to travel on a trail than through underbrush. Being aware of tracks, droppings and other bear signs (claw marks on trees, rotten logs ripped apart and hair on tree bark from rubbing), will allow you to determine better the presence of bears.

It's easy to recognize a bear's sizable droppings of plant leaves, partly digested berries, seeds or animal hair.

Black bears are solitary. They don't associate with other bears except sows with cubs or during breeding. Bears may gather at a place of abundant food - for feeding.

Bears are intelligent and curious. They can see colors, form and movement. Although their vision is good, they generally rely on their acute senses of smell and hearing to locate food and warn them of danger.

Adult black bears make a variety of sounds. However, the most commonly heard sounds are woofing and jaw-popping. The young ones whimper or bawl.

Habitat

Black bears have long been viewed as forest dwelling animals. However, an unbroken expanse of forest doesn't provide enough food for black bears. They need berry patches and stream bottoms to satisfy their appetites for plants and insects.

In Colorado, the largest black bear populations are found in areas dominated by Gambel's oak and aspen near open areas of chokecherry and serviceberry bushes.

Every bear has a home range where it finds all it needs. It travels to different areas of its home range as snow recedes, plants sprout and berries ripen.

In general, black bears may range from 10 to 250 square miles. Adult males occupy the largest areas, while females usually establish their home range close to their mothers'.

Hunting and feeding habits

A lack of natural food in the backcountry is forcing an increasing number of bears into urban areas where they are feeding on trash, forcing their way into homes (often attracted by odors), pet food, bird feeders and other sources of edibles.

Bears may be active anytime, day or night, most often during morning and evening twilight. When not feeding or looking for food, they generally rest in day beds - next to a log in a windfall in dense brush or in a depression.

Black bears are omnivores - they eat both plants and animals. About 90 percent of a bear's diet is made up of nutritious plants while about 10 percent consists of animals.

Bears will eat broad-leafed flowering plants, berries, nuts, insects, carrion (dead animal carcasses) and grasses.

In late summer, black bears fatten up for winter hibernation. During this period, they may be actively feeding for up to 20 hours per day and may ingest as many as 20,000 calories daily.

Mating and breeding

In Colorado, male bears are capable of breeding as 3-year-olds. A few female bears may have cubs at 3 or 4 years although 5 years is more common.

Bears mate in early summer, but development of the fertilized egg is delayed until November. If the female enters the den in poor condition, it is believed she will reabsorb the fertilized egg rather than continue development of a fetus.

The female bear generally does not breed again while her cubs are with her.

Birth to maturity

After a 2-to-3-month gestation period, one to three (usually two) tiny cubs are born in midwinter. They are blind, toothless and covered with very fine hair at birth.

Nurtured by their mother's rich milk, they grow from less than a pound at birth to an average of 10-15 pounds by the time they all emerge from the den in mid-May.

Care of the cubs rests solely with the female. The cubs watch their mother and learn by mimicking her. Most black bear cubs stay with their mother for one year. The young may climb trees for protection or when they are threatened.

By the time the black bear cubs' second spring arrives, they have become more self-reliant. Littermates may stay together through the summer and perhaps even den together. Cubs will usually not reunite with their mother. Some cubs separate from their mother in their first autumn and become independent.

Although black bears are generally shy and avoid human contacts, there are some precautions you can take to avoid encounters if you camp and hike in bear country.

You are responsible for doing all you can to prevent conflicts with bears. If a bear gets food from you, it's likely to behave more aggressively toward the next people it meets. Don't reward a bear for associating with people.

Camping

Keep your camp clean: Store your food and garbage properly at all times. Keep your tent and sleeping bag free of all food smells. Store the clothes you wore while cooking or eating with your food. Burn all grease off grills and camp stoves. Wipe table and clean up eating area thoroughly.

Store food in closed containers. Store all your food and coolers in your car trunk or suspended from a tree - at least 10 feet off the ground and four feet out from the tree trunk. Don't underestimate the ingenuity of a bear. Vehicles are not bearproof.

Dispose of garbage properly. Put it in bearproof garbage cans where available or secure it with your food and then pack it out. Don't burn or bury garbage. Bears will dig it up.

Sleep well away from food areas. Move some distance away from your cooking or food storage site.

Store any toiletries safely. Store them with your food - the smell of toiletries may attract bears. Abstain from sexual activity and practice good personal hygiene.

Hiking

Enjoy the woods. Hiking at dawn or dusk may increase your chances of meeting a bear. Use extra caution in places where hearing or visibility is limited: in brushy areas, near streams, where trails round a bend or on windy days. Avoid berry patches in fall. Reduce your chances of surprising a bear by making noise - talk or sing.

Make sure children are close to you or within your sight at all times. Leave your dog at home or have it on a leash.

What if you meet a black bear?

There are no definite rules about what to do if you meet a bear. In almost all cases, the bear will detect you first and will leave the area. Bear attacks are rare compared to the number of close encounters.

However, if you do meet a bear before it has had time to leave an area, here are some suggestions:

Remember, every situation is different with respect to the bear, the terrain, the people and their activity:

Stay calm. If you see a bear and it hasn't seen you, calmly leave the area. As you move away, talk aloud to let the bear discover your presence. Stop. Back away slowly while facing the bear. Avoid direct eye contact as bears may perceive this as a threat. Give the bear plenty of room to escape. Wild bears rarely attack people unless they feel threatened or provoked.

If on a trail, step off the trail on the downhill side and slowly leave the area. Don't run or make any sudden movements. Running is likely to prompt the bear to give chase and you can't outrun a bear. Do not attempt climbing trees to escape black bears. This may stimulate the bear to follow and pull you down by the foot. Stand your ground on the ground.

Speak softly. This may reassure the bear that no harm is meant to it. Try not to show fear.

In contrast to grizzly bears, female black bears do not normally defend their cubs aggressively; but send them up trees. However, use extra caution if you encounter a female black bear with cubs. Move away from the cub; be on the lookout for other cubs.

Bears use all their senses to try to identify what you are.

Remember: Their eyesight is good and their sense of smell is acute. If a bear stands upright or moves closer, it may be trying to detect smells in the air. This isn't a sign of aggression. Once it identifies you, it may leave the area or try to intimidate you by charging to within a few feet before it withdraws.

Fight back if a black bear attacks you. Black bears have been driven away when people have fought back with rocks, sticks, binoculars and even their bare hands.

Who do you call?

If you have a potentially life-threatening situation with a black bear or if an injury occurs, contact the Division of Wildlife 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday through Friday at central dispatch - 264-2131; the division's area office in Durango at (970) 247-0855; or contact the Colorado State Patrol at (970) 249-4392. To report an incident involving illegal hunting or shooting of a bear or other wildlife, call Operation Game Thief at 1-800-332-4155 (reporting callers can remain anonymous).

There are three Division of Wildlife officers serving Archuleta County: Mike Reid, Larry Garcia and Doug Purcell.

Implementing Community Plan has not been priority

By John M. Motter

Staff Writer

This is the second article in a series designed to examine the Archuleta County Community Plan. The series intends to answer several questions. Why a community plan? How was the plan developed? What does the plan accomplish? What has the plan accomplished?

Archuleta County's Community Plan was approved by the Upper San Juan Regional Planning Commission in March of 2001, then endorsed by the board of county commissioners two months later in May. The 2001 Community Plan replaced an earlier Archuleta County Master Plan.

The purpose of the Community Plan is to help county planners and elected officials make decisions affecting growth and land use in the community.

Development of the Community Plan began in late 1998 when a group concerned with many aspects of growth asked the county commissioners to do something. The commissioners appointed task forces, the task forces recommended certain actions, and development of the Community Plan began.

Obviously, a Community Plan should represent the needs of the community. What did the community want?

As a first step, one of the county-appointed task forces called the Vision Committee persuaded the commissioners to hire a professional company to conduct a telephone survey. Tosch and Associates, of Durango, was hired at a cost not to exceed $6,000 and charged with determining community attitudes concerning zoning and other growth-related issues.

Four hundred telephone calls were made to Archuleta County residents based on standard sampling methodology.

The first question asked was, "In your opinion, what is the most important issue facing Archuleta County today?"

"Growth" was the answer given by 51 percent of the respondents. The next closest area of concern, roads, was given top priority by only 17.25 percent of the respondents.

In regard to the management of growth, 48 percent of the respondents said Archuleta County does not have enough regulations for managing growth. When asked if Archuleta County should develop a growth management plan, 79 percent of the respondents said yes.

If such a plan is developed, Tosch asked, what should have the highest priority? Protecting the interest of the community as a whole was given top priority by 56.75 percent of the respondents. Protecting individual property rights was given top priority by 37.5 percent of the respondents.

To a question on who should pay for the costs of services required because of growth, 45.5 percent of respondents said developers should pay.

A number of other questions were asked. Based on answers to the above questions, the commissioners appointed a steering committee and hired Four Corners Planning and Design Group to help the county develop a community plan.

Work on the plan began early in 2000. Painstaking care was taken to involve as many citizens from the county as possible. The county was divided into geographic zones with common interests. Volunteer committee members served from each zone. From the beginning, it was made clear that zoning need not be countywide. Regulations could be adapted to fit the needs and desires of each specific zone.

Public meetings were conducted in each zone. Results of the first round of meetings were summarized. A second round of meetings was conducted.

Finally, the consultants wrote a draft of what they thought people wanted. More public meetings were conducted, draft revisions made, and more public meetings conducted by the planning commission and later by the county commissioners. Finally, after more than a year of work involving input from hundreds of people, the resulting Community Plan was endorsed by the commissioners in May of 2001.

The plan was a compilation of what the community wanted concerning growth and land use management. It did not contain teeth, the laws needed to enforce the desires. Fifteen months later, the plan still contains no teeth.

What have the commissioners been doing?

In a joint meeting between commissioners and county planning staff, the following priorities were established during June of 2001, just a month after the commissioners endorsed the Community Plan.

Listed as action items were the following short-range priorities: sign regulations, lighting regulations, landscaping regulations, environmental/design standards and architectural design guidelines.

Long-range priorities established at the same time were affordable housing, cluster development, land use classification, airport compatibility, purchase development rights and transfer development rights.

Actually accomplished by the planning staff since June of last year were the following: oil and gas regulations, minor revisions to land use regulations, revised bonding procedures, adoption of a disbursement policy for trail escrow funds, changed land use fees, mapping fees, improvements agreement revisions, and new district boundaries for county commissioners and school board members. Other work remains in progress, such as lighting and sign regulations.

In June of 2002, planning staff proposed the following list of short-range projects: grading permits, land use regulation enforcement, landscaping regulations, environmental/architectural design standards and revised bonding procedures.

Long-range priorities suggested at the same time are: land use classification, gravel pit review, impact fees, cluster development and revision of the Community Plan.

Planning staff handles a large number of development and growth-related activities in addition to developing new policies. Their work load and priorities are established by the commissioners. Clearly, while the planning staff accomplished a great deal during the past year in response to direction from the commissioners, implementing the Community Plan has not been a priority.

Could 51 percent of the community be wrong?

Another rattlesnake bite reported

By Tess Noel Baker

Staff Writer

An unidentified Pagosa Springs man was taken to Mercy Medical Center at Durango Sunday for treatment of a rattlesnake bite.

Paramedic Jill Young said emergency personnel were first paged to a location about 13 miles south of Pagosa Springs on Trujillo Road. However, the injured man met the ambulance in a private vehicle.

Apparently the man had been attempting to remove the snake from his front yard, something he had done before, but failed to get a good grip, Young said. The snake bit him on an index finger. Because of new federal patient information restrictions, The SUN was unable to uncover the identity of the man or his current condition.

This is the second suspected rattlesnake bite in the area this year. Earlier in the summer, a Pagosa Springs resident was bitten while gardening.

Southwest part of county facing fire district dilemma

By John M. Motter

Staff Writer

A delegation of residents from the southwest portion of Archuleta County presented details of their fire protection dilemma to Archuleta County commissioners Tuesday.

Dee Jackson spoke for the group, most of whom live in the Allison-Arboles area. Involved are Archuleta County residents along the U.S. 151 corridor from the county line to Cabezon Canyon.

Concern about whether to obtain fire protection services from the Los Pinos Fire District or from Pagosa Fire Protection District prompted the group to approach the commissioners.

Apparently, the Allison volunteer firefighting organization is taking steps to join the Los Pinos Fire Protection District headquartered in Ignacio in La Plata County.

In the past, Allison volunteer firefighters have been independent and served the Allison-Arboles-Tiffany area. The line between La Plata County and Archuleta County is just west of Allison. The Allison volunteer organization is not a tax-levying body.

If the Allison group joins the Los Pinos Fire District the entire area covered by the group, including a portion of Archuleta County, will become part of the Los Pinos Fire District and pay property taxes to that district.

La Plata County can approve the change without notifying the Archuleta County commissioners, Jackson said.

Jackson and others from the visiting group said they think sending taxes into La Plata County from Archuleta County could create problems. They asked the Archuleta County commissioners, to the best of their ability, to delay any action designed to allow the Allison firefighters to join the Los Pinos Fire District.

"We have four options," Jackson said.

Residents living in that area can: choose to join the Los Pinos Fire District, choose to join the Pagosa Fire Protection District, split between the two fire districts, or do nothing.

The Pagosa Fire Protection District has a better rating, Jackson said, referring to a system used by the insurance industry to assess the capability of a fire department. Jackson and others from the delegation urged all citizens living in the southwest part of Archuleta County to delay action until the choices can be thoroughly studied.

In other business the commissioners took the following actions:

- Randy Eoff was appointed to the San Juan Weed Advisory Board.

- The commissioners listened to protests from Keren Prior, the county assessor, and June Madrid, the county clerk, concerning county employee pay policies. Prior and Madrid assert the commissioners show payroll favoritism to departments supervised by the commissioners at the expense of employees supervised by other elected officials. A workshop has been scheduled to consider the issue.

- R. Michael Bell and Associates, of Durango, was selected to prepare a study for a proposed county administration facility, at a bid price of $31,000. The lowest bid was $23,900 made by the Pagosa Team, a local group. The selection recommendation was made by an advisory committee appointed by the commissioners using a predetermined selection criteria that was applied to each of the six applicants.

- Jessie Formwalt was authorized to appraise the former Colorado Department of Transportation property located in town on U.S.160 and now owned by the county.

- A lease agreement was authorized between the county, Airport Authority, and the county search and rescue organization for using facilities located at Stevens Field.

- The rebuilding of Light Plant Road was accepted.

Vista residents move to take community

back with Neighborhood Watch program

By Tess Noel Baker

Staff Writer

They want their neighborhood back.

And they're taking the first step with the help of the Archuleta County Sheriff's Department.

Residents of part of the Vista subdivision located west of Vista Boulevard, have formed a Neighborhood Watch organization and recently celebrated the placement of the first sign proclaiming its presence.

"The Vista has gotten a really bad rap," Annette Martinez, neighborhood watch coordinator, said. "We want to make it safer for everyone."

Recently, she said, Vista, her home for 14 years, has been tagged with nicknames such as The Hood, The Slums or even Cocaine Alley. Property crimes, drugs and harassment were problems that had many people concerned. Then, in April, the Martinez family was the victim of vandalism that damaged two vehicles and their home.

Enter Deputy Bob Brammer. Brammer came to Archuleta County last year from a law enforcement position in Denver. In his former department, an officer was specifically detailed to manage community-based programs like Neighborhood Watch aimed at helping people take proactive and preventative measures where they lived.

"When I started, I wondered why we didn't have any community-based programs here," he said. "We're understaffed and we can't always be everywhere at once. Sometimes we're not as visible as we'd like to be, and we wanted to get some citizen involvement."

For a while, he simply observed various neighborhoods as he went. He found some Neighborhood Watch signs in Meadows and learned that it had been tried before but didn't take hold. Eventually, he landed on Vista as a target area.

Crime was up there, he said. Yet Vista is also a fairly close-knit community with sometimes three generations of the same family living near each other. He targeted specific people who had been recent victims of a crime and who might be angry. He urged them to take that anger and direct it in a positive way. He wanted them to watch, to listen and to call the sheriff's department when crime was suspected.

"For me, I feel living here I've seen the changes in Pagosa," Martinez said. "I just feel if there's something that can be done, why not do it."

The Vista Neighborhood Watch group met for the first time in late May. Between 10 and 12 people showed up. It was enough to keep going. Volunteers handed out fliers, talked with their neighbors and started setting some goals. Since then, the group has met twice, growing each time. Active membership climbed to 40 with about 20 in the core group, block captains were named and one block pulled in enough people to earn their first Neighborhood Watch sign.

They planned a volunteer clean-up day and got a Dumpster donated. To keep people from overfilling the Dumpster and making a mess, members of Neighborhood Watch kept an eye on things. The Dumpster was quickly filled and pulled. But the cleanup didn't stop there. Volunteers handed out orange trash bags which were later hauled to the transfer station. In one yard in particular they removed four "humongous" bags of trash, she said.

"Now when we drive by we don't have to look at that anymore," she added. They've also planned to rent some industrial-sized weed eaters and tackle some of the more overgrown road ditches.

It's working, Martinez said. Although the group is still in its infancy, some good things are happening. Groups of teen-agers are no longer gathering so frequently, people are leaving on their porch lights to make it easier to spot problems late at night and a week or so ago neighbors were able to help one man find a lost dog.

"Property crimes have definitely subsided," Brammer said.

Other events are still in the works. The group is considering a block party in August. They want some training to allow them to organize citizen patrols. They're thinking about coming together to petition the county for things like streetlights, a curfew, or a noise ordinance. More signs are needed, Martinez said. They'd like to have one at each block and at the most visible entrances to the development.

The sheriff's department also has goals. They'd like to see Neighborhood Watch programs in every part of the county. They'd like to begin a citizen's academy to train people to help with things like vacation checks. They'd like, ultimately, to have an officer dedicated to community-based programs. Right now, Brammer is helping with the Neighborhood Watch program on his own time - a volunteer just like all the others. Right now, the money is slim or none.

But with the help of the community, Capt. Bob Grandchamp said, anything is possible.

"Although we try to be in the community, they live in the community," he said. "They are additional eyes and ears, an intelligence network for us. They have an investment here."

For more information on the Neighborhood Watch program call 264-2131 and ask for either Brammer or Grandchamp or jump on the Web at www.ncpc.org.

 

Three Pagosa teens suspects in car theft

By Tess Noel Baker

Staff Writer

A station wagon stolen from Durango was recovered in Pagosa Springs July 16. Three teen-agers, all local and between the ages of 14 and 15, are suspected of the crime.

According to Pagosa Springs Police Department reports, Officer Tony Kop stopped a Subaru station wagon at San Juan and 7th streets following a reckless driving call. Five teen-agers, all female, were traveling in the car. All were subsequently detained.

An investigation by Capt. Chuck Allen revealed that the vehicle, registered in Farmington, was reported stolen July 5 from a church parking lot in Durango. Apparently the keys had been left on the floor boards and the doors unlocked.

Three of the juveniles face charges of aggravated motor vehicle theft, possession of stolen property and conspiracy. All suspects have been released into their parents' or guardians' care at this time.

Letters

Ballot initiatives

Dear Editor:

I'd like to bring to your attention two state ballot initiatives from the Bighorn Center for Public Policy in Denver.

The Open Ballot Initiative provides fair access to qualified major party candidates to get on ballots by petition. It establishes reasonable signature requirements in lieu of the caucus process. It preserves the caucus and assembly, recognizing their value in promoting vigorous political discussions of party principles and candidate debates.

The Automatic Absentee Ballot Initiative hopes to boost voter participation by offering convenient mail voting, while still offering traditional polling places; it also establishes heightened ballot security.

You can find initiative details at www.bighornaction.org/agenda. While online, get on Bighorn's telemarketing No-Call List at www.coloradonocall.com and fight its opposition at www.stopcallsnow.com.

Call 731-3138 to indicate your desire to sign the petitions.

Sincerely,

Karen Aspin

Political affairs

Dear Editor:

If my friend and neighbor, Ben Douglas, wants to claim putting taxes ahead of jobs, the sputtering shell game called Social Security, regulation by the inept and uninformed, and suicide as examples of Democrat good ideas, I guess I won't argue.

But if it's friends and supporters of Ken Lay and Enron he's looking for, look no farther than Bill Clinton (and his secretary of treasury, who lobbied for Enron), on whose watch that particular scheme was hatched and matured. When the dust settles, that will doubtless prove true of the majority of these business scandals. Doubtless also, these affairs will get a full airing in the news media, particularly to the extent that they can be twisted to harm President Bush. Likely to remain virtually unnoted will be the $18 million that Clinton bud and DNC Chairman Terry McAuliffe pocketed from the looted Global Crossing company. One wonders how much of that swag ended up riding on Bill Clinton's hip.

As for family values, while I wouldn't say that Democrats invented adultery, I believe the comparative political fates of Clinton, Condit, Livingston, and Gingrich might suggest a difference between the two parties.

But, no, I don't think that Republicans have all the good ideas, just nearly all of them. For instance, we did overlook the "inalienable rights" of bears. How did we miss that one? I do like the idea of a position forum, though. Maybe Teddy Kennedy could moderate. Life jackets mandatory for the ladies, of course.

N. G. Constan

Chromo

Danger still exists

Dear Editor:

I would like to thank the City Markets in Pagosa Springs, for trying to refrain from selling charcoal briquettes and liquid fire starter during the ban on their usage in Archuleta County.

Unfortunately, not all of the merchants in our community are as responsible. For instance, one of the larger stores has not only been selling these products, but actually advertised them in their flier as a special sale item.

I spoke to a person in management at the local store, and was told that since the store is a national chain, the local store has no say in what was offered for sale. I was given a toll-free number for their customer service hotline at their corporate offices.

When I called to voice my concerns, I was promised that the matter would be looked into right away. I hope that is true.

I am suggesting that if this corporation hears from many people in this community who are concerned, they may pay attention. Why not take a minute and let them know how you feel? The Alco customer service hot line toll free number is (800) 334-2526.

Also, we have heard that most of the fires which have been so devastating to our state are, or are nearly, "contained." Most of us know that doesn't mean that the fire is completely out. In this time of severe drought, all it would take is one lightning strike to start the whole thing over again. We can't control Mother Nature, but we sure can do something about the ignorant jerk who flips a cigarette butt out of his/her vehicle. Get a license number and turn it in. It may seem like a small thing, but if you ask, you'll find out that many fires are started by just such a careless act.

We all have to do everything, and anything we can, to protect our beautiful state from fires which can be prevented.

Dahrl Henley

Best of Colorado

Dear Editor:

Throughout the summer, we have seen Coloradans come together to help each other. As our state faced the worst trial by fire in our history, we saw the best of Colorado's people and its institutions. We saw people donating supplies, food and dollars to help the fire victims. We saw people volunteer to help however they could along the fire lines and in the communities affected by the fires. The spirit of volunteerism is what Colorado Cares Day is all about.

I'm encouraging Coloradans to volunteer for the fourth annual Colorado Cares Day Aug. 3. This year, Coloradans will help the victims of the fires by cleaning up and reseeding our forests. Communities across the state will help families, neighbors, farmers and ranchers pick up their lives and rebuild.

Colorado will emerge from these fires far stronger, tougher and more united. This state was founded by people who thrived on hard challenges. Coloradans' character is not changed.

There are many other opportunities to volunteer. Visit a nursing home. Clean up a nearby park. Paint an elderly neighbor's home. The opportunities are endless. Citizens of our state are evidence of the spirit of Colorado. The exhibitions of teamwork and compassion we've seen should be an inspiration for others to come out and volunteer on this day - when we demonstrate how much Coloradans care.

For more information on how to give back to our state and help out a local community, go to the Colorado Cares Day Web site at www.state.co.us//coloradocares or call (877)233-3444.

Governor Bill Owens

Denver

Do the right thing

Dear Editor:

Bears are creatures that provide fun and excitement for children of all ages. Why are we so reluctant to feed them when adverse conditions affect their lives?

People say that if you feed animals, they will become dependent and be unable to fend for themselves. This is utter nonsense. Animals have instincts to survive and will not revert to dependency, when their food supply is abundant. People like to believe what they desire to be true, even though it makes no sense.

Man is the overseer of this planet. He cannot turn his back on animals who are starving. Animals benefit mankind. By studying animals, scientists have been able to develop drugs and vaccines that cure diseases and prolong life.

Bears are said to have long memories because they return to the places where they have been fed.

Wouldn't it be ironic if scientists, by studying bears, found the cure for Alzheimer's? So, follow your conscience and do the right thing.

Dr. Herbert Parker

Economic liberty

Dear Editor:

Washington is again attacking the "profit motive," which is a veiled assault on capitalism. Politicians are seizing on individual "sin" as another excuse to meddle, while overlooking the consequences of their own mantra: "It's OK, everybody does it." If we'd look into the details, we'd see that things would be better if government had given market forces more responsibility. Unfortunately, it's easy to play on the emotions of the public, convincing them that politicians can dabble in freedom, allowing a few of its liberties while enacting "anti-capitalism" regulations. It's folly to think they can fool around with capitalism, tuning it into their visions, skipping the costs and getting all of the benefits anyway.

Economic liberty cannot be untangled from liberty of other kinds. Only capitalism has been successful in eliminating disease, pestilence, hunger and gross poverty. Only capitalism delivered better treatment to women, racial minorities, the handicapped, criminals and the insane, or has won every intellectual, moral and real battle there is to win. Only capitalism has succeeded in outpacing the solutions of all its ideological adversaries, all the while struggling against the combined forces of junk-science, property-seizing government, trial lawyers, Ponzi scamming politicians, voters with free-lunch syndrome and so on.

Capitalism allows individuals to freely decide which needs and desires they rank important and which to obtain. It protects human rights and is open to all people. It's profoundly egalitarian, distributing rewards based on each's contribution to satisfying the needs of others.

Capitalism is the most efficient and effective method by which activities, such as production, distribution, price and value can be determined without coercive or arbitrary intervention of authority. Capitalism checks greed through trade, corruption through the rule of law. Capitalism encourages people to voluntarily do what is in the social interest. Capitalism develops responsible behavior by providing an incentive to care for and maintain one's possessions. And most importantly, it restrains and minimizes the abuse of coercive power concentrated in the monopoly of government.

The opposites of these traits are not capitalism but, human nature, equally as bad in anti-capitalism too.

Kim Rogalin

Durango

Voter forum

Dear Editor:

As you've emphasized several times recently in your editorial column, this is an election year, and we've got several important county level races coming up that deserve our attention.

Tuesday, Aug. 13, registered Republicans in Archuleta County will have the opportunity to vote for a Republican candidate for Archuleta County Sheriff and for a Republican candidate for Archuleta County Treasurer.

The League of Women Voters of Archuleta County has, in the past, presented candidate forums during which our local voters could meet, listen to and question the candidates running in the upcoming election. These forums have been intended to help local voters make informed choices when they go to the polls.

For the upcoming Republican primary races, the League has decided to try a different format for presenting the candidates to the voters. Rather than holding a live forum with written questions passed to the candidates from the audience, the league is going to present the candidates in a live radio broadcast format to allow voters countywide, who might not be able to attend a forum at the extension building, to phone in their questions directly to the candidates.

As president of the League of Women Voters of Archuleta County, I'd like to take this opportunity to invite all our county's voters to tune in to AM 1400 Monday, July 29, 7-8:30 p.m. We'll have the two candidates running for country treasurer in the Republican primary, incumbent Traves Garrett and challenger Pam Eaton, available to take questions live on the air.

We'll also have incumbent sheriff Tom Richards and challenger Larry Bass, who is running as a write-in candidate. The call-in program will also be broadcast on 106.3 FM and candidates will take questions from voters who call 264-5983.

I urge all county voters to turn in and phone in any questions for any of the above-mentioned candidates to address.

And, as always, we at the League will later want feedback from the public as to whether this new type of format was helpful in making the candidates available to more of our county's voters.

Nan Rowe

Airport plans

Dear Editor:

Having recently reviewed the official Archuleta County - Stevens Field Airport Layout Plan Update, published in 1996, I feel obligated to make public my opinion on such unnecessary "improvements."

I learned about the plan by way of certified mail, indicating the airport's intention to buy some of my property which lies in the proposed "runway safety area." Other property owners are so affected. The right of eminent domain exists for those situations challenging the acquisitions.

The county intends to increase the airport capabilities, by way of a longer and stronger runway and expanded and leveled ground "clear zones" alongside and at the ends of the runway, in order to accommodate larger and turbine powered aircraft. The heightened runway capabilities entail acquiring land around the runway from private landowners. Once necessary real estate is in place, forest clear-cutting and ground leveling operations are to begin, actually planned this month.

Improvements to the runway and runway environment will have many ramifications, including greater air traffic volume, larger and heavier aircraft, more overflying noise, thrust reverser noise from jets rolling out on landing - all in all, a busier and faster-paced aerodrome.

The plan is flawed. Because a couple of business jets used the field at one time does not mean that they are standing in line to fly in. Business jet-sized aircraft (Falcon model 900) is, in fact, the "critical" aircraft used in the study. This type of jet normally flies to Aspen, Telluride or possibly Durango as a recreational destination.

It is difficult to imagine a business purpose for such equipment at Pagosa Springs. How is it that the county commissioners and airport management envision great economic benefit following project completion?

Certainly no scheduled airline would drop service at Durango for Pagosa, let alone add on the service.

I love aviation and I own and fly aircraft. I love high-elevation Colorado, mountains, forest and quiet. There is a place for commercial and busy aeronautical activity, but not in Pagosa. Can you imagine living in the near vicinity of Durango-La Plata County Airport?

The FAA has been called upon to study Stevens Field and respond to the desires of the airport. They have. The FAA uses "boilerplate" technique and the clear areas, height restrictions, etc., all conform to the same standards as for Denver International Airport; there is no differentiation.

Stevens Field is an outstanding airfield and should be treated with respect and consideration for the surrounding and influencing environment. To arbitrarily draw up grandiose plans, without public input at all, and to spend huge sums of money, could best be characterized as a genuine American "pork" project.

Many improvements can be made at Stevens Field while preserving the quality. Chain saws and bulldozers are not exactly necessary tools to accomplish the airport improvement mission. I suggest to keep Pagosa Springs on the map, but as a destination which offers and maintains all the Colorado high country attributes which got the whole thing started in the first place.

Mark Sherman

Phoenix, Ariz.

Basic services

Dear Editor:

I agree with the letter two weeks ago regarding the new county building. I don't think the county commissioners should have spent $750,000 on property on Hot Springs Boulevard along with $30,000 on designs for a new office building for themselves when they could lease available space.

They get paid very well to do their jobs and they don't need a fancy office to do it in. I would like to see that money spent on staff for animal control, building code enforcement and litter pickup.

How can they think of building a new building when our county lacks these basic services?

Claudia Smith

Editorial
Water and wildlife

The past week in Pagosa Country brought something we hope continues, something we hope subsides, and some things worthy of consideration with an eye to the future. Our drought was dented slightly by several rainfalls, heavy in some areas. While the precipitation was not enough to significantly raise stream levels or to put impressive amounts of water into lakes and reservoirs, it did dampen our precariously dry landscape and allow for small fires ignited by lightning to be extinguished with relative ease.

We are still in the grip of a major drought, however, and the human population of the area is not the only one suffering the effects. Ask any local rancher and he or she will tell you of the pressure put on cattle during this dry spell. Quite a bit of livestock has been shipped out of the county early this season, for lack of adequate food supply. Good grass and pasture has been rare, at best.

While several recent letters to the editor provided eccentric points to consider, and no small measure of humor, the plight of wildlife is very real.

Dry conditions and a late freeze make for a lack of natural foods, acorns and berries, and our bear population has begun to make its presence known in residential areas.

In their seasonal feeding frenzy, without natural foods, the animals have little choice but to roam and seek alternative sources for their nourishment and survival. Residents are reminded in articles in this week's SUN to refrain from feeding bears, to keep foods of all types locked away in sealed containers, indoors, out of reach of the animals. A bear that becomes habituated to a food provided by humans, a bear that returns to the source after removal by wildlife officers, is a dead bear. Fines are also possible for residents who do not remove attractants from their property.

Bottom line: We need more rain. Much more. With more moisture, there is a chance some of the natural foods will be in place as the bears turn on the afterburners in preparation for the trip to their winter dens.

Representatives of several local entities met Tuesday to deal with the prospect of more moisture, to consider stimulating rainfall and snowfall, boosting our water supplies with cloud seeding operations.

This is a worthy thing to study, analyzing proposals and data to determine if cloud seeding will work to our advantage. There is some evidence that recent operations nearby - at Telluride and areas north of Durango - have provided higher streamflow levels relative to the average than we have here in an area without cloud seeding. We need to look into this.

The project is a task perfectly suited for the San Juan Water Conservancy District, which has collected tax monies for years and, in the absence of expenses related to reservoir projects, has revenues available for study and for any possible project. The Southwest Water Conservancy District is also in a position to participate. These agencies should be in the lead, supported by Pagosa Area Water and Sanitation District, the county and the town.

If cloud seeding seems plausible, by all means find the money and proceed on a trial basis. If it is a poor idea, as one representative at the meeting from the San Luis Valley contends, direct funds to a longer-term problem such as enhanced water storage for the region. Do both, if possible.

Granted, we can't do much if conditions don't permit us to act; you need clouds to seed. But, it is reassuring to know that individuals and organizations are actively seeking solutions.

If they succeed we will go a long way toward preserving our style of life and our collective economic health.

And the bears will have their food and leave us alone, even as we encroach further into their backyard.

Karl Isberg

 

Legacies

By Shari Pierce

90 years ago

Taken from SUN files of July 26, 1912

The severe rain that we had the fore part of the week has washed out the railroad track in several places. The train went as far as Hall's canon on Wednesday morning and had to come back on account of a washout on the road. The main line between Pagosa Junction and Arboles was reported damaged. The rain began last Sunday and has been keeping it up ever since.

Fred Catchpole is mentioned as a candidate for county commissioner on the Republican ticket to take the place of Mr. Sullenberger who will not run this year.

No form of gambling is highly commendable, but the woman who marries a man to reform him is taking the biggest chances.

75 years ago

Taken from SUN files of July 29, 1927

The ranch home on the N.L. Hayden place, about four miles north of town, caught fire about noon Monday and was entirely destroyed, together with most of its contents. With a favorable wind and hard work on the part of many neighbors, the fire was prevented from spreading to nearby buildings. The destroyed building consisted of eight rooms, was two stories in height and of log construction with board siding. It had been occupied by members of the Hayden family for about thirty years.

On July 7 a new law went into effect conferring upon county commissioners jurisdiction over dance halls and places of amusement outside of incorporated towns.

50 years ago

Taken from SUN files of July 25, 1952

Taxpayers of the county this past week received a stiff jolt, when notices of valuations under the state tax reappraisal program were sent out. In many cases valuations had jumped to figures nearly three times the previous valuations. The county commissioners sitting as a board of equalization this week considered the new valuations and the equalization of the values and then notified the tax commission that they could not accept the new valuations. The state tax board said they would take the refusal under consideration.

The volunteer fire department was called to the east end of town Saturday when the brakes on a large transport, loaded with gasoline, caught on fire. It was extinguished before any great amount of damage was done.

25 years ago

Taken from SUN files of July 21, 1977

Freakish weather prevailed in some parts of the county over the weekend. There were some gully washers, with roads being flooded, there were some fierce and heavy hail and there were some fantastic lightning displays. The moisture received over the county was beneficial, though, and no one suffered any serious damage.

Fishing these days is variously described as excellent, good, bad and indifferent. It all depends on the fisherman talked to. There have been reports of some nice catches in higher elevation lakes and beaver ponds, and a few big ones have been landed out of the San Juan River. Lake fishing, at any elevation, is generally good.

 Community News
Pagosa Lakes News

Hi Tri offers chance for local athletes to shine

By Ming Steen

SUN Columnist

Able-bodied citizens of Pagosa Springs: Did you know the recreation center hosts an annual triathlon? This is no ordinary triathlon, either. It is the Pagosa Lakes Hi-Tri.

It begins at 8 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 17.

Where will it be? Right here in Pagosa Springs.

Who participates? You and others like you.

Why would I want to do the triathlon? The event will help you discipline yourself to train in order to increase your endurance, stamina and overall conditioning.

The triathlon follows a unique format of run, bike, swim (breaking away from the traditional swim, bike, run format). Because none of the open water in Pagosa Lakes is available to swimmers, we chose to use the indoor pool at the recreation center instead.

With an average of 80 participants and a four-lane, 25-yard pool, it made sense to put the swim last so the athletes have a chance to spread themselves out over the run and bike portions. It has worked out very well because the spectators are able to watch, encourage and cajole the triathlon participants through the whole last leg of the event from the pool deck.

The triathlon starts with a 7.2-mile run on residential roads and forest trails. Then you transfer to a mountain bike for two loops of the same course - ending up at the recreation center where the final leg, a half-mile swim, takes place.

This is a challenge that many can participate in. You can compete as a single and do all three legs by yourself, or split it up two or three ways and get a team together. Do this for yourself, and start your training now.

For information and help getting started, contact the recreation center at 731-2051. If you are interested in competing as a team but do not have one, the center can help you put a team together.

Sam Branson, a Chicago-area resident who turned 101 years old in May, credits a portion of his extended life and much of his vitality to exercise. He swims for half an hour (six laps) four to five days a week. He used to play handball and racquetball "but all my competition died, so I started to swim." Asked for his recipe for a long life he replied, "Just lucky, I guess ... I've been healthy all my life, but it's important to stay active."

Let's face it, America's weight problem is out of control. A stroll through any mall reveals a family resembling spin dryers in loose-fit clothes. Young people are showing diabetes at ages as young as 15 and obesity is a national health issue.

Book stores feature hundreds of diet books facing their enemy cook books across the aisle. Virtually everyone is on a diet and people who dare cook for their friends have to negotiate a perilous rapids choice of foods with certifiably low-calorie, low-salt, low-cholesterol, low-fat and low whatever.

I love food - to cook it and to eat it. Choosing food has become moral, not simply physical and sensual.

Here's something fundamental for you if you want to shed some pounds - Weight Watchers. An open meeting to start a new service will be held at 11:30 a.m. Friday in Ridgeview Mall. Can't make a meeting tomorrow? There's a second planned at 5 p.m. Aug. 13 at the same location. For more information call Barb at 731-2710.

Don't forget the annual Pagosa Lakes Property Owners Association meeting Saturday at the clubhouse on Port Avenue. Voting starts at 9 a.m. and the meeting at 10. Doughnuts and juice will be served.

 

Senior News
Lena Bowden, Helen Girardin, Gene Copeland cited

By Janet Copeland

SUN Columnist

Happy Birthday to Lena Bowden. Lena celebrated her 78th Tuesday, July 16.

This lovely lady has been a dedicated volunteer at the Senior Center for many years - currently she rides the bus and helps keep the paperwork straight. We love her so much and wish her the best.

This Friday we'll celebrate the July birthdays of Bill Downey, Mae Boughan, Norma Richardson, Bob Cooper, Lou Ann Waddell, Cecil Tackett, Pat Foster and R.L. (Hoppy) Hopson. We hope all of you have a very happy birthday.

We will have a yard sale at the Senior Center, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Friday and Saturday. We have lots of odds and ends - walkers, crutches, hospital bed, furniture and the like - that won't be needed at the new facility, so please check out our treasures.

Don't forget the Bar-D Chuckwagon dinner in Durango tonight. If you signed up, please be sure to arrive at the center before the 5 p.m. departure time.

Thanks to Don Hurt for his presentation on "When is it time to stop driving?" This is a critical issue for seniors, one we all need to think about, for our own safety as well as the safety of others.

A big welcome to our guests and returning members this week: Al Micek (Larry Russell's friend), Sharmain Redwood, Jim Estell, David Hopkins, Verna Sorrels, Ethel Clark, Pam Eaton, Dee McPeek, Abby Linzie, Don and Ilsa Hurt, Lyman and Marilyn Mundy, LaLa Dunlop, Mary Ann Stewart, and Mary Archuleta and her daughter, Berlinda. We were so happy to have Mary back with us; we have missed her since injury forced her to stay at home.

Musetta is missing in action, attending a nutrition conference in Denver this week. We sure miss her when she's away.

What a privilege to announce Helen Girardin as last week's Senior of the Week. Helen volunteers many hours to help us out and we appreciate her so much. This week's honoree is none other than my wonderful husband, Gene Copeland.

Help. We need two volunteers to attend wellness workshops Oct. 1-3 so they can help promote wellness for the seniors. The course will include chair yoga, caregiver support, pain management, feel-good bingo and senior nutrition. We will help pay the costs of the workshop if the individuals will commit to a certain amount of service afterward. Contact Laura or Musetta at the Senior Center for more information.

Our Volunteer of the Month is Jim Hanson. Congratulations, Jim. We so appreciate Jim's help in advising our seniors on Medicare-related matters.

Seniors will have their first meal Aug. 5 in the new space, The Silver Foxes Den, located at the west end of the Pagosa Springs Community Center. Due to the upcoming move, menus for July will not be posted for the entire month but will be posted weekly at the center and/or announced on AM 1400 between 7:30-8 a.m.

Other upcoming events include Dru Sewell's Soup to Nuts crafts class each Monday after lunch. Dru furnishes the project supplies and shows us how to do them. I hope everyone will take advantage of this special lady's talents and generosity.

The pool at Best Western is available to Senior Center members at no charge weekdays, except Tuesday, 9-11 a.m. Be sure to check in at the desk and show your membership card. They also offer us discounts on meals.

Richard Harris offers yoga at 9:30 a.m. Tuesdays.

There are computer classes Wednesdays with Sam Matthews at 10:30 a.m., card games at 1 p.m., Chi Kong exercises with Vasuki at 1 p.m. (bring a large towel or mat and a tie, if possible, and wear loose clothes).

Every Friday at 12:30 p.m., Jim Hanson will help with Medicare counseling.

Veterans Corner

Durango VA clinic contract signed

By Andy Fautheree

SUN Columnist

I received important news late last week concerning the long-awaited VA Outpatient Clinic in Durango.

According to the information I received, a contract has been inked with Health Net Federal Services for VA Health Care in Durango. Health Net is subcontracting with an existing health care facility in Durango. The exact facility that will be providing the contract services was not named in time for this column.

This is an important step to obtaining VA Health Care services at a nearby facility, that is already staffed and in place. I'm sure our veterans throughout this part of southwest Colorado will be glad to know this information. I was fearful as late as a few weeks ago the Durango clinic would be pushed back in time, because no bids were made on the VA contract. That was what I was told at the time. This would have meant a VA facility would have to be started from scratch and staffed, which could have caused many delays in providing the VA health services.

Opening date

An opening date for services to veterans is anticipated by Sept. 30. You can rest assured I will be updating all Archuleta County veterans with further information on this important development as I learn more specifics.

I would like to point out some important information concerning those veterans who want to receive their VA health care in Durango.

If you are already enrolled in the VA Health Care system through the Albuquerque VA VISN18 district you do not need to re-enroll for Durango. The Durango clinic will be part of the Albuquerque district, the same as Farmington, Chama and all other clinics in this area. If you are enrolled at the Grand Junction VA Medical Center you will need to re-enroll for the Durango clinic. Grand Junction is part of VISN19 district in Colorado. Because of our southern location it was long ago decided the VISN18 district would better serve us.

Transferring To Durango

It is my understanding veterans already enrolled in the Albuquerque system will be contacted when the time comes to ask them if they want to transfer their VA health care to Durango. I have been told these veterans will have first preference for Durango. I would certainly encourage veterans to get enrolled now in the Albuquerque system so they will be on the waiting list for Durango. I can handle those enrollments at this office.

Veterans only recently enrolled by me at Grand Junction were also enrolled in the Albuquerque system, anticipating a transfer to Durango when it opened. If you are unsure which VA Health Care system you are enrolled in, you may call Albuquerque VA Medical Center at (800) 465-8262 to check your status. I do not have that information in this office, so it is best to call Albuquerque.

If you have appointments scheduled in the near future I would encourage you to keep those appointments since we are not sure when an actual transfer to Durango will take place.

It is reasonable to assume there will be a transition period while many veterans make the change from their present VA clinic to the Durango clinic. How long this transition will take is not known. There is no need to rush into any changes until we know more facts.

For information on these and other veteran benefits please call or stop by the Veterans Service Office located on the lower floor of the county courthouse. Internet Web site for Archuleta County Veterans Service Office can be found at www.archuletacounty.org. The office number is 264-2304, the fax number is 264-5949, and e-mail is afautheree@archuletacounty.org. The office is open from 8 to 4, Monday through Thursday, Friday by appointment. Bring your DD Form 214 (Discharge) for registration with the county, application for VA programs, and for filing in the VSO office.

 

Arts Line

Carr, Turolla exhibit opens tonight

By Pamella Bomkamp

Plan on attending the Pagosa Springs Arts Council's gallery exhibit opening tonight. We invite you to view Ruth Carr's beautiful watercolors and Michelle Turolla's extraordinary photography and jewelry.

The open house reception is 5-7 p.m. at the gallery in Town Park. This exhibit will show through August 14.

Roberto Garcia's bronze sculptures and watercolors will be the next exhibit on display Aug. 15 through Sept. 4.

The Council's home and garden tour was enjoyed by all who attended. We would like to thank the seven homeowners and Pagosa Area Water and Sanitation District for opening their doors for this annual fund-raiser. And a big thank you to Marti Capling and Doris Green for all their hard work coordinating the event.

New improvements

In early May Doris Green applied to the Rotary Club's Community Grant Committee, to refurbish the gallery. She met with Richard Faubion, chairman of the Rotary Community Grant committee. The project was approved and is underway.

In addition to Rotary's cash donation, special thanks are in order to the following businesses for donating materials to complete the refurbishing: Cool Water Plumbing for installing a water pressure valve; Ace Hardware for a new screen door and materials for various needs; Paint Connection for paint and sprayer; Andrew and Stephanie Jones for painting the gallery; and Interior Dreams for providing the carpet at cost. This was truly a community effort. The final work should be complete by mid-August.

Special project

The Arts Council is working with a variety of community members and organizations to develop a public art program for the Pagosa Springs area.

In April 2002, the Committee for Art in Public Places presented its proposal to the town of Pagosa Springs parks and recreation department. The committee plans to approach the town again. The goal of the project is to establish an ongoing program to enhance the visual environment in our community and to expand the opportunities for residents and visitors to experience works of art.

The committee plans to acquire and place its first work within one calendar year. After the first work is placed, the committee plans to continue to place works in a variety of public locations. This project will provide free exposure to a variety of art, as well as reflect the uniqueness of the Pagosa Springs community, environment and history.

For more information contact Jennifer Harnick at 731-3113.

Membership

The council helps ensure a flourishing and diverse community by enriching lives through the arts. We are a nonprofit organization that relies on membership, donations and volunteers to help provide meaningful and educational cultural programs for local residents and visitors to our area. By becoming a member of the Arts Council you are supporting our events as well as our divisions.

If you'd like to start receiving your discounts as a member it's easy to do. Just stop by the gallery and fill out a membership form. Individual membership is only $20 per year and family membership is $30.

Whistle Pig

The Whistle Pig Concert Series is proud to present Chuck Pyle, the "Zen Cowboy," from Boulder. This event will take place Aug. 23, 7 p.m. at the Hudson House, 446 Loma St.

Chuck comes with cowboy poetry - contemporary themes and humor - and finger-style folk guitar. Reserve your seat by calling Bill and Clarissa Hudson, 264-2491. Whistle Pig is a volunteer organization. We welcome other volunteers to become involved. Whistle Pig is sponsored by the Council.

Other business

Tune to 1400 AM on your radio dial the second Thursday of each month from 8:05-8:35 a.m. to hear the latest Arts Council news and information.

Any businesses interested in having a flyer placed in our quarterly newsletter please call Stephanie at 264-5068.

Did you or someone you know accidentally leave your yellow cardigan sweater at the gallery? If so, you can pick it up Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m.

Volunteers needed

Anyone interested in volunteering time at Council functions, like our occasional snack booths, please contact Joanne at 264-5020. There is not much to the task, and it is a lot of fun!

We are looking for a writer to write the Artsline column once a month. Please call 264-5020 for more information.

The gallery in Town Park is open for the exhibit season through October, Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m-5:30 p.m. Each exhibit runs three weeks. Receptions are held on the opening day, usually a Thursday, 5-7 p.m. Complimentary refreshments are served and all are welcome.

 

Chamber News

Visitor Center Web stat hits record in June

By Sally Hameister

This year, perhaps more than ever, local folks are interested in the current Visitor Center statistics, and I am happy to accommodate. I will also seize this opportunity to remind everyone how important it is to hang in there and stick together in challenging times.

The true mettle of an individual is rarely apparent in their behavior during the easy times, but somehow always surfaces during the difficult times that try men's souls and wallets. It would be naive indeed not to acknowledge that this summer has already served up some formidable challenges that have made our lives decidedly more complicated and troublesome.

If someone had told me even two years ago that I would be dipping my used bath water into containers to pour onto the tree I planted last fall, I would have said that they were insane. Alas, I'm doing some things that I've never done before in the name of conservation and actually taking some pride in innovation. 'Nuf said. We'll get through this with luck and pluck and be better for it in the end.

Visitor Center traffic in June showed a decline of 1,876 from the previous year with 7,071 in 2001 and 5,195 last month. May of this year was only down 369 from 2001. Texans, once again, loved us best with 1,717 signing in and fellow Coloradans came in second with 1,543. Not surprisingly, New Mexico was third with 987; Arizona fourth with 591; and fifth place was taken by our friends from Oklahoma. California, Kansas and Florida filled the sixth, seventh and eighth slots for those who want to know.

Information packet requests read just a bit differently after the resounding Texas number of 605, the 285 Colorado requests and the 156 from Arizona. California springs up in fourth place here with 144 and then comes Oklahoma with 143. In every case, comparing last year's figures with our year-to-date figures, we will exceed last year's numbers by year's end.

Web site figures simply skyrocketed during the smoky month of June to produce a record-breaking total of 33,442 hits during the month for an average of 1,115 hits per day. It will be fascinating to see how that number changes now that things have thankfully settled down. Our year-to-date total on the web is 155,901 for an average of 861 hits per day. Not bad for a sleepy little mountain town, eh?

Windshield wash

Although business was very slow Saturday with the Membership Appreciation Car Wash being demoted to a windshield wash, we had a grand time cleaning about 24 auto windows. Last year we washed over 75 cars and hope to do at least that number next year when we have some water, but we had to settle for something that didn't require water this year, and that was just fine.

We want to thank the DeVoti men - Mark, Ben and Josh - Ken and Jan Harms, Bob Eggleston, Sally Theesfeld, our constant supporters and helpers, Poor Don and Mary McKeehan, and Dick Babillis who faithfully stood in for Director Bonnie Masters. Of course, Doug and Morna Trowbridge were at the Visitor Center bright and early setting up and the last to leave when all was done as is their magnificent pattern. Thanks to all for the help and great fun.

We did offer a chance for a free membership as we have in the past. Big winners this year were Ken and Jan Harms with SelecPro School Photography. Just in case anyone is even slightly suspicious about a board director winning, we held the drawing Monday morning at the Visitor Center with one of our trusted diplomats selecting the winning ticket. Congratulations, Ken and Jan.

Soft survey

I asked Morna to conduct a random survey to gather information and numbers from businesses from the month of June and the first week of July in the five different sectors - hotels, campgrounds and cabins, real estate, restaurants and retail sales. I need to tell you the results are all over the map and not at all consistent. In the hotel category for the month of June, she received responses ranging from "painfully down" to record breaker, and for July, the range went from pretty good to 50-percent down.

Campgrounds and cabins were all over the place from down, slow, even, good and up in June and down over the 4th to pretty good and three-fourths full after the first two weeks.

Real estate was interesting in that we learned that 9/11 pretty much set back the market for the following nine months and things were just beginning to get back to normal. June responses ranged from very slow to fair, and July, some responded, was slower, some were busy and some said that interest seemed to be up.

Restaurant responses for June ranged from way down to good and we received the same responses for July.

Retail sales seemed to follow no pattern at all with responses ranging from way down, down, up, up first three weeks to 20 percent over last June; and in July the range was from down 25-30 percent, not up to par, to again 20 percent over last July. One business that submitted figures comparing last July to this July was near dead even, actually up $11.

We will probably conduct another survey around the first or second week of August to gain just a sense of what businesses are doing.

Country Showdown

The world's largest country music talent showcase and radio promotion is coming to Pagosa Springs with over $200,000 in cash and prizes awarded nationally. Our own KWUF is sponsoring this event which is designed to find the most promising country music talent in America, giving these performers a chance to launch their professional careers.

Local winners advance to one of over 40 state contests where the prizes include $1,000 in cash and the opportunity to compete at one of the six regional Country Showdown contests in the fall. Winners at the regional level are flown expense-paid to the national final where they compete for the grand prize of $100,000 and the coveted national title.

The Archuleta County Fairgrounds will provide an unrivaled setting for the competition, which will spotlight some of the best, and brightest talent this area has to offer. Serving as contest judges are Dan Appenzeller, John Graves, Debbie Ramey and Elaine Nash-Putnam. A uniform judging system on all levels of the competition ensures fairness. Sounds like a very exciting first for Pagosa Springs, and you never know when you may be a part of the audience when the next Garth Brooks or Reba McIntire makes their debut.

FEMA/SBA assistance

If you were unable to attend the recent meeting concerning disaster relief, please feel free to stop by the Visitor Center for information. Even though no one in Pagosa sustained the loss of residence or property due to fires, Economic Injury Disaster Loans are available through the SBA for businesses impacted by the drop in tourism. This type of loan provides working capital to pay necessary obligations until operations return to normal.

You can call (800) 621-FEMA or stop by the Visitor Center for more information. Even though you may not need immediate assistance, you are encouraged to register with FEMA in case you need their services in the future. The FEMA representative stopped by my office last week and said that there were currently 19 businesses registered in Archuleta County.

Membership

I have a correction, two new businesses and twenty-five renewals to share with you this week, so we'd best get on with it.

I mistakenly wrote that new members, Steve and Judi Ferguson, were property managers when in fact they handle only residential rentals at this time. I apologize for any inconvenience this might have caused and encourage you to give them a call at 731-6303 to learn more about their new and view units.

Our first new member is actually an old member and good neighbors who have recently expanded one business into two. We welcome their new marketing director, Paula Miser, and Rick Allen who bring us The Springs, "A Hot Springs Resort" located at 165 Hot Springs Boulevard. Previously, the lodging facilities and the hot springs both were combined as "The Spring Inn," and now the two have become two separate business entities. The Springs offers 15 terraced pools of naturally hot therapeutic mineral water in a park-like setting on the banks of the San Juan River in downtown Pagosa Springs. You are invited to give them a call at 264-2284 to learn more about The Springs, "A Hot Springs Resort."

Member No. 2 this week is Tom Sander who brings us Good Sense Home Inspections with offices in his home here in Pagosa Springs. Tom provides detailed inspection services and comprehensive reports with a focus on customer satisfaction. We're delighted to welcome Good Sense Home Inspections and invite you to give Tom Sander a call at 264-1001 to learn more about his services.

Our renewals this week include David L. Maley with Davis Engineering Service; Buz Gillentine with Silver Lining Productions; Bryan Anderson with Fast Q Communications, Phoenix, Ariz.; Alan Schutz with the Pagosa Springs Golf Club; William F. Thornell Jr., D.D.S.; Curt Christensen, CPA; Paula Miser and David Gabel with The Spring Inn; Susan Neder with Colorado Land Title Company, LLC; Big Brothers, Big Sisters, in Durango; Tim Smith with Archuleta County Airport Authority; Judy Nicholson with Civil Design Team; Kathie Lattin with Vectra Bank Colorado; Joyce Hopkins with Log Park Trading Company; Connie Giffin with The Serenity Trail and Mountain Home Classics; Jere Hill with Village Texaco and United Oil; Bob and Susan Kanyur with Barnwood Crafts; Carolyn Feller with Chile Mountain Cafe; Teddy Finney with Seeds of Learning Family Center; and Carrie Campbell, director, Pagosa Area Water and Sanitation District. Our Associate Member renewals this week include Mamie Lynch, Sylvia Murray, Gene and Joan Cortright, and Dick and Ann Van Fossen. Thanks to all.

 Library News

New search tools speed circulation system

By Lenore Bright

SUN Columnist

Our new circulation system has many new search tools to help both staff and patrons find material in our library. We are glad to help anyone who would like to learn quickly how to use it.

Just come in and ask one of the staff or volunteers to give you a quick introduction. It's easy, fast and will be very useful in the future. We will continue to get updates to make it even better as we go along.

And remember, you can search from home. Come in and get the Web address and your personal introduction.

Watch out 30-plus

Peter Newman of MacLean's magazine exhorts us to understand, "The new economy creates its own rules and speed is everything - accelerate or die. We have moved from a world where the big eat the small to a world where the fast eat the slow." According to the Newman article, we are moving to a time where the peak earning years occur before a person is 30 years old, after which he or she effectively retires.

It's the pro athlete model extended to everyone. Success will be measured by how many pivotal corporate players remember your cell phone number or e-mail address, so you can beat rivals to the source of the best deal.

"The new economy will be driven by the Internet," says Newman. "It will absorb radio, TV, personal computers, telephones, and cameras. According to futurist George Gilder, more value will move across Web pages daily than will be carried by all of the world's super-tankers, pipelines, 18-wheelers and cargo aircraft."

How many of Archuleta County's students are prepared for a world such as this? How many of us over 30 can even relate? How many of us are becoming useless by resisting change, and how many of us are already irrelevant?

New book

"Super Searchers Go to the Source," by Risa Sacks, gives the interviewing and hands-on information strategies of top primary researchers - online, on the phone and in person. Twelve information professionals combine time-tested primary research techniques with the best information tools the Internet has to offer. This is a reference book that can be used in the library.

Summer reading winners

This is the final week of the program. All contracts should be in by 3 p.m. Saturday so prizes may be awarded. And the Teddy Bears' tea party in the park will be next Wednesday at 11:30 a.m. All participants are invited but must be accompanied by a parent and a bear. The bear may be of any type, size or age. There will be door prizes and refreshments.

Here are the winners for the past two weeks.

Cat Coloring Contest: Trevor Bryant, Gabriella Gallegos, Johanna Laverty, Lindsey Marley, Kasey Perea, Hannah Rohrich, Trey Spears, Adeline Thompson, Kai Wagner and Kudra Wagner.

Carry On Art Contest: Colby Anderson-Andresen, Kyle Anderson-Andresen, Dylan Boyd, Breezy Bryant, Emily Bryant, Benny Gallegos, Maegan McFarland, Tarah McKeever. Alphabet Story: Breezy Bryant, Megan Bryant, Kerry Honan, Mele Lelievre, Jennifer Mueller and Zoe Rohrich.

Jellybean Contest: Samantha Hurt, Will Laverty and D.J. Lien.

Readers of the Week: Keaton Anderson, Drake Farrell, Johanna Laverty, Niki Monteferrante, Cole Smith, Austin Courtney, Tyler Cowan, Tavin Hauger, Michael Iverson and Holon Rumsey.

Birdhouse Contest: Elias Appenzeller, Dylan Boyd, Justin Boyd, Breezy Bryant, Emily Bryant, Megan Bryant, Brook Cordova, Trenton Cordova, Austin Courtney, Zack Curvey, Amanda Kerr, Mele LeLievre, Jesse Long, Megan McFarland, Tarah McKeever, Lindsey Marley, Julia Nell and Anne Townsend.

Imagination Drawing: Kyle Anderson-Andresen, Breezy Bryant, Megan Bryant, Zack Curvey, Benny Gallegos, Kerry Honan, Tarah McKeever, Sierra Monteferannte, Zoe Rohrich, Sarah Schultz and Anne Townsend.

Bear Table Coloring Contest: Colby Anderson-Andresen, Justin Boyd, Zackary Curvey, Jacqueline Garcia, Julia LeLievere, Sierra Monteferannte, Hanna Rohrich, Trey Spears, Anne Townsend, Kai Wagner and Kudra Wagner.

Donations

Thanks for materials from Ken Santo, Janet Donavan, Carol Mestas, Jay Grammer, Tom Kyle, Pat Yarborough, Cathie Kreston, Ron Alexander and Roy Vega.