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Briefs for May 06, 2010

El Fandango tonight and Saturday  two Cinco de Mayo shows at the FOX

WALSENBURG- El Fandango will present its 2010 Cinco de Mayo performance, De Colores, on the evening of Thursday, May 6 at 7 pm, followed by a matinee performance on the afternoon of Saturday, May 8 at 2pm at the Historic FOX Theatre.  Admission for the show is $5 per person, with tickets available at the door. The FOX will open forty-five minutes before each show.

    El Fandango has a long history in Huerfano County, having begun as Huerfano County High School Spanish Club in 1939 and led for many years by Martha Spock.  The current directors welcome students of every age and from schools throughout the county to become versed not only in the folk dances of Mexico, but also in a wide spectrum of folk dances from around the world and the common party dances of Latin America.  This year’s program will feature dances of the states of Jalisco, Chiapas, Vera Cruz and Nayarit and promises to bring back memories of performances past while providing a fresh look at an old friend.  For more information, or to reserve tickets, call 738-1331.

Ricky Tims Presents “Ostentatious Dubai” tonight

LA VETA- As part of the La Veta Public Library’s ongoing series of “Travel-Logs,” Ricky Tims will present a multi-media program of slides and video from his recent trip to Dubai, on Thurs. May 6, 7 pm at the Library.  Dubai is one of seven city-states in the federation of the United Arab Emirates, a strategic area directly south of Iran across the Persian Gulf.  Tims visited Dubai as a featured teacher and judge for the International Quilt Festival Dubai earlier this year.

    Tims reports that “Dubai is a sophisticated mega metropolis in the desert, with no natural fresh water supply.”  Yet Dubai supports a population of a million and a half, and hundreds of thousands of visitors every year.  Dubai has used its wealth from oil production to embark on a huge building program to attract tourists from around the world. Dubai has built futuristic buildings in all shapes and sizes, including the world’s highest building- the Burj Khalifa, 160 stories high (2,716 feet).  Ricky has great photos of these fantastic buildings and his exciting camelback ride in the desert.  Don’t miss this exceptional evening at the La Veta Library, tonight at 7 pm.

Huerfano Film Club tonight

WALSENBURG-  There will be a special showing, ketching up, re-runs, and two documentaries: "Organizing in the Ghetto" 1964 -1970  SDS Newark, NJ and the original "Hog Farm Movie" concurrently with a planning meeting to kick off a regular ongoing cinema program at the library featuring wonderful, fantastic features, documentaries, otherwise unheard of or unavailable cinematography.  We will come together (no pun intended) for 1/2 to 1 hours.  The Huerfano Film Club is based at the Spanish Peaks library in Walsenburg.  All events include music, food, and discussion.  Kick off is Thursday May 6 from 5-7 pm.  Be there or no vote!

Tourism Board meets

WALSENBURG- The Tourism Board of Huerfano County will meet at noon Fri. May 7 in the commissioner meeting room, courthouse.  On the agenda are reports on the Cuchara Community Development, from County Administrator John Galusha, a proposal from KSPK, and signage for the county.

Cops vs. Jocks

WALSENBURG- The Re-1 School district and the Huerfano County Sheriff will be hosting a Fundraiser flag football game : Cops vs. Jocks,  on May 8 at the John Mall High School football field.  The game will begin at 1 pm.  All proceeds will go towards helping local athletes from the Walsenburg Day Center attend the summer games in Greeley in June. Come on out and support your community.  There will be drawings, concessions and a great time! Adults only one Buck!  Children under 10 years, no charge.

    For more information contact Captain Kevin Vallejos @ 719-738-1600.

Community Garden plant sale Sat.

WALSENBURG- The Walsenburg Community Garden is having a plant sale on Saturday, May 8 starting at 9 am.  All proceeds will go toward supplies for the garden.  The Walsenburg Community Garden is a project of Volunteers for Change and is located on the Community Center grounds at 928 Russell Ave. Please contact Charles Bryant for more information at 738-2696. 


Birding at Bent′s Old Fort & JM Reservoir

LA JUNTA- Spring is a great time to get out and explore Southeast Colorado′s birding and heritage.  Special fieldtrips with expert guided tours are scheduled May 13-16.  Dr. John Drummond with 35 years of birding experience on 6 continents will lead birdwalks on a trail at Bent′s Old Fort.  Duane Nelson, biologist, will guide walks at John Martin Reservoir. Nelson is working in our area to save the threatened Piping Plover and Least Tern. 

    A banquet Fri. evening will welcome the guides, followed by an evening Bird Walk to watch for Black Rail and other night birds.  Saturday morning auto tour and birdwalks include the Bent′s Old Fort area, lunch with the guides, and afternoon birdwalk at John Martin Reservoir area.   Birdhouse making and wildlife sketching workshops are scheduled Sat. afternoon at 2:30.    The tours are being held in partnership with May Colorado Historic Preservation Month.

    A welcome reception begins Thurs. May 13, at 12:30.  First tour begins at 1 pm, for heritage, birding and petroglyphs along the Purgatoire River area, followed by a Prairie Plant ID workshop scheduled at 4 pm, and evening tours.  Friday′s tour features birding, petroglyphs and dinosaur track areas on private land.  The pre-registration fee is $10 per adult. Child with adult is free. Space is limited. For more information on the banquet, fieldtrips and workshops call 719-456-2173, 719-456-1296 or email


“How To” workshopFunding Energy Efficiency

LAMAR– Southeast Colorado RC&D is hosting a “How To Fund Energy Efficiency Implementation” workshop for local individuals, small business owners, and community leaders Thurs. May 13 at Otero Junior College.  Join us in the Student Center Banquet Room #116 from 1 – 4 pm. 

    American Recovery and Reinvestment Act stimulus funding is available to help local individuals, businesses, and community facilities upgrade their buildings to save energy.  This includes efficiency measures like new insulation or HVAC equipment, as well as renewable energy systems such as solar thermal, solar electric, and wind.  You don′t need a professional grant writer to apply for these funds.  Speakers will address available funding options and review the application process.

    For further information contact Judy Fosdick at (719) 252-2849 or Misty George at (719) 529-0577  

    Topics will include the following:  • Assessing What Energy Efficiency Measures Your Building Needs – by Judy Fosdick, RC&D Community Energy Coordinator and Energy Auditor, • Energy Performance Contracting (utility bill savings pay for the cost of the project) & new Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy grants for Public Buildings – by Bob Mailander, Governor’s Energy Office Regional Representative, • Black Hills Energy Commercial Rebates – by Gene Mantei, DSM Program Manager, • Energy Efficiency and Building Revitalization Do′s and Don′ts – by Gary Berngard, Honeywell Business Development Program Manager, and • Rural Energy For America Program (REAP) & Community Facilities Application Templates – by Joe Kost, USDA Rural Development. REAP grants subsidize energy audits, energy efficiency improvements, and renewable energy systems for agricultural producers and small rural businesses.

Armed Forces Day dinner and music supper

WALSENBURG- The third in a series of dinner-and-music events at the United Church of Walsenburg honors our military on Armed Forces Day, May 15.  The pancake and sausage dinner begins at 5 pm and ends at 7 pm in Hatfield Hall, Kansas and Main Streets.

    Active military receive a free supper, veterans pay $4, tickets for other adults will be $5 and children $3.  Music will be by the Stroh family and friends.

Hometown Heroes weekly bakesale

WALSENBURG- Huerfano Hometown Heroes has a bakesale every Wednesday 10-3 pm at Adventure Trails/Journey Home in Walsenburg.  Great yummies, breakfast burritos and fresh ground coffee served with all proceeds going to recognize and support our servicemen and women.  Got a hero?  We will be sending boxes to our troops May 16 and would like to include your deployed military friend or loved one.  Please contact us at

Teaching for Learning Transfer

PUEBLO-  CSU Extension, in conjunction with Christine Cerbana of CSU-Fort Collins, will present a new class on working with adult learners called Teaching for Learning Transfer.  This program helps trainers refresh their knowledge and skills in working with adult learners.  It includes the most recent learning theory, brain development, adult learning characteristics and needs, methods and ethics.      You will develop a training plan specific to your field or interest over the two-day training.  Child care trainers may count this training as the adult education class required by state agencies.  Class Date are May 27-28 from 8:30 am – 4 pm at CSU Extension, 701 Court St., Suite C, Pueblo, CO 81003. The fee is $125.  The deadline for registration is May 24.  Please make checks payable to Extension Program Fund and mail or deliver payment to CSU Extension. Please include an e-mail address where we can send pre-class materials.

Become a Master!

PUEBLO- Have you ever wanted to learn about the beautiful plants that grow in nature?  Consider becoming a Native Plant Master!  Award-winning Native Plant Master courses are offered at various open space parks and public lands during spring and summer.  Courses are taught in the field using living examples of Colorado flora.  Instructors have extensive field experience and are certified Native Plant Masters and/or have advanced degrees.

    CSU Extension/Pueblo County is currently accepting registration for the June 12, 19, 26 course.  Cost is $90 per course or $50 per course for participants who report public contacts.  Registration deadline is June 2.  Call 583-6566 for details.

Protect pets from rattlesnake encounters

SILVER CLIFF- Approximately 300,000 domestic animals a year are bitten by venomous snakes in the U.S., according to The Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital University of California, Davis.      The best way to prevent your pet from a deadly encounter is to teach them to avoid snakes through snake aversion training by a professional trainer.

    Dundee Memorial Animal Care Center, 1200 Broadway, Silver Cliff will be offering its tenth annual snake aversion training clinic for dogs at Dundee’s facility in Silver Cliff, CO on Fri. June 11 and Sat. June 12.  The training takes approximately 60 minutes.  The charge is $65 per dog, with a 5% discount for owners registering more than one animal.         

    The training is conducted by administering a mild shock via an electronic collar when the dog sees, hears or smells a snake.  Live rattlesnakes in protective cages are placed in natural settings to provide the stimuli.  The dog learns to associate unpleasant consequences with the scent, sight or smell of the snake.  The training will be conducted by Bob Kettle, who has conducted hundreds of such training sessions throughout the western United States during the past 15 years.  Bob is a well known herpetologist who has raised and studied snakes for over 30 years.

    The Dundee Memorial Animal Care Center was built and named after “Dundee”, an Australian Shepherd who was bitten by a rattlesnake and died as a result of her encounter.  Because they have attended the training, none of the five Aussies who shared her home have been bitten, though they have made their owners aware of the presence of snakes on several occasions.

    For additional information or to obtain a registration form, call Dundee Memorial Animal Care Center at (719) 783-3770.

Food Drive in Walsenburg sponsored by VFC

WALSENBURG- Volunteers for Change will be sponsoring a monthly food drive the first Friday of each month starting  June 4 at Dollar General in Walsenburg.  The food collected will be distributed through our local food bank at Dorcas Circle on Main Street.  VFC president, Susan Kalman, says a few more helpers for the food drive will be welcomed.  Please call Susan at 719-250-6097.

4-H Meeting

LA VETA- On Thurs. April 29, the Columbine  4-H  Club  met  at the Community Center  to discuss new business.  The spaghetti dinner,  Meat Quality Assurance and Heath Fair went well.  The 4-H Talent Show is on June 10.   Submitted by Madison Estabrook.

Canning Basics Class

WALSENBURG- Pueblo County Family and Consumer Science Extension Agent, Lois Illick, is offering a one day Canning Basics class on Sat. June 19 from 8:30 am to 4 pm at the Community Center in Walsenburg.  The cost is $10 per person.

    The class will cover pressure canning, water-bath canning, jams and jellies and food safety.  Participants will learn how to preserve food at home safely while retaining high quality.

    Please call Angela at 719-738-2170 to register.  Deadline for payment is June 16 by 4 pm.  We must have 5 paid participants to hold the class.  Space is limited to 30 participants.

The Old Blind Dogs In concert one night only at the Fox

WALSENBURG- The Old Blind Dogs, one of Scotland’s most highly-touted traditional folk bands, “play with a compelling energy and intoxicating rhythm,” (The Scotsman).  Since the early 1990’s the Dogs have remained at the cutting edge of Scotland’s root music, and to prove it, they have twice won Scotland’s coveted title ‘Folk Band of the Year,’ most recently in 2007, when they also won best recording.

     The Old Blind Dogs are particularly known for their impassioned live shows that thrill audiences in Britain, Ireland, and everywhere they tour.  Now is your chance for a thrilling evening with the Dogs.  They will be performing for one evening only, Thurs. June 24, 7:30 pm, at the Fox Theatre in Walsenburg.  (Musicians, bring your instruments for a jam session following the concert.)

    Tickets are $18 in advance and $18 for students up to 17.  Adult tickets are $20 at the door. Tickets are being sold at Mike’s Coffee Barn on 7th Street, Walsenburg,  you can order tickets by phone at  719-742-5410 or through the Celtic Festival website,

    This concert is in support of the Spanish  Peaks  International Celtic Music Festival.

All Walsenburg Class  Reunion Classes, entertainers, artisans wanted

WALSENBURG- The All Walsenburg Class Reunion organizers want to reach as many people as possible to get the message out that there will be a second annual All Walsenburg Class Reunion Sept. 4, 2010- Labor Day weekend.  The website to get more information is  Any classes that might be having a special reunion this year are invited to also hold their reunion on the Friday of Labor Day weekend and then join us on Saturday. 

    Reunion organizers are also looking for groups wishing to entertain in the afternoon on an outside stage and for artisans who might want to show and sell their items during the afternoon from noon to five or so. 

    Finally, Walsenburg merchants and residents will be asked to donate silent auction items to help raise money at the reunion for donation to Walsenburg projects.

′Recharge Colorado′ provides economic boost for business

COLORADO-  Colorado consumers have responded vigorously to the launch of ′Recharge Colorado,′ reserving more than 25,000 energy efficiency rebates through more than 75,000 visits to and more than 16,000 calls to the call center since the campaign launch April 19.  The enormous interest in rebates for energy efficient appliances, solar power and other energy upgrades has created an economic spark for retailers and contractors providing energy-saving services.

    Rebates were scooped up statewide, with great interest along the highly populated Front Range, but with strong response in rural and mountain counties as well, in areas including Routt, La Plata, Montezuma, Chaffee, Montrose, Teller, Yuma and Delta counties.

    "The Recharge Colorado energy rebate program has really been successful in Chaffee County," said Kathryn Wadsworth, community energy coordinator in Chaffee County, where the public reserved 83 rebates in the program′s first week.

     The public is also encouraged to visit and to learn about its many features beyond rebates.  The new website includes an energy action planner to create a plan to save energy in the home, an energy incentive finder, which leads Coloradans to all the local, state, utility and federal rebates and tax credits by zip code as well as listings for service providers nearby. The site also includes numerous tips for saving energy and money, as well as news items and success stories tied to the New Energy Economy.

    The Recharge Colorado campaign has teamed with the four Better Business Bureaus (BBB) serving Colorado to help Coloradans connect with vendors offering energy services.  Residents and business owners can use the site to select efficiency and renewable energy measures that help them save money, then use the list provided by the BBB to select contractors who provide the needed services, creating a seamless process for consumers.

Trinchera Foundation supports the arts in La Veta

LA VETA- The Spanish Peaks Arts Council has received a donation from the Trinchera Foundation for the Building Expansion fundraising campaign. With this generous donation, SPACe is past the halfway point in the campaign and on track to begin construction in the fall of 2010. The Trinchera Foundation joins El Pomar, the Gates Family Foundation, Cuchara Hermosa Club, San Isabel Electric Assn., Fuller Western Real Estate, Petroglyph, and "Red" McCombs as sizeable contributors to the campaign. Several fundraising events are planned for this summer including an Art Collections tour June 26, and a Clayton Staples Retrospective July 31-Aug. 1.

    Individuals and businesses who value the importance of the arts to Huerfano County are encouraged to contribute to the expansion campaign by donating $100 or more and having a tile inscribed with their name installed in the new SPACe facility. The tiles will be handcrafted by local potters Nicole Copel and Polly Harris. For Mother′s Day, give a gift that lasts by reserving a tile in your mother′s name. Businesses or individuals may also consider donating more sizeable amounts and leaving a legacy in the form of a naming opportunity for the new exhibit area or the upstairs workspace. All contributions are tax deductible.     For more information, go to the SPACe website, and scroll down to the links for the Building Expansion. Call SPACe at 719 742-3074 or send donations to P.O. Box 419, La Veta, CO 81055.

Tourism maps available

HUERFANO- The Tourism Board of Huerfano County, together with four other neighboring counties, recently produced a colorful counter map that highlights the arts and heritage of a five-county area.

    This tourism piece includes a calendar of area events, a listing of local attractions and a little history on some the colorful characters who have helped define what makes south-central Colorado special.  The purpose of the piece is to increase awareness and participation by tourists and local citizens to the art, culture and historic aspects of the counties.  Over 75,000 copies of the map were printed and it is available at travel trade shows, Visitor Centers, businesses, art venues and heritage sites throughout the five-county area. 

    This project was funded in part by the Colorado Council on the Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts and the Colorado Department of Local Affairs. Each county also contributed some cash match and several hours of in-kind services. 

    For more than four years, the Five-County Heritage Tourism Committee (Las Animas, Huerfano, Custer, Fremont and Pueblo counties) has been meeting to develop strategies to increase visitor numbers and stimulate the local economy. A recent assessment was contracted to determine the potential of developing heritage tourism as an expanded economic sector for the region. The assessment identified "centers of excellence in the performing and visual arts, an extraordinary inventory of historic, cultural and scenic assets, and ethnic histories second to none in the state." 

    If you would like to have some counter maps available at your business, please call the Tourism Board of Huerfano at 738-6294, or email  

Photo contest

WALSENBURG- The Upper Huerfano Conservation District is sponsoring a photo contest open to amateur photographers (those who make less than 50 percent of their income from photography) who are residents of Huerfano County.     Categories include the following: Conservation – i.e. volunteers planting trees, livestock management or a windfarm; Close Up Conservation – i.e. Aquatic insects, farm implements, water drops, etc.; Conservation in Action – i.e. conservation districts in action such as planning, office staff at work, interaction with landowners or landowners in a conservation-related event. And/or Ag/Conservation Across America – i.e. photos covering barns, crops, farm practices, livestock, etc.

    Black-and-white prints, color prints, and prints from digital photos are all acceptable.  All entries must be postmarked or dropped off at the Conservation District office by August 31, 2010. There will be two groups for each category: youth ages 6-18 and adult. For each group, there will be a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winner with 1st place receiving $100, 2nd place receiving $50 and 3rd place receiving $25. 

    For a complete set of contest guidelines, judging standards and an entry form, contact the Upper Huerfano Conservation District, at (719)738-1171 or e-mail


Agriculture Secretary Vilsack Seeks Nominations

for Advisory Committee on Minority Farmers

WASHINGTON- Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack is asking for nominations to the Advisory Committee on Minority Farmers. This committee will advise on how to provide outreach and assistance to socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers, methods to maximize participation of minority farmers and ranchers in USDA programs and civil rights activities related to program participation.

     The committee, which was established by the 2008 Farm Bill, will be composed of not more than 15 members. The membership will include no less than four socially disadvantaged farmers or ranchers; no less than two representatives of nonprofit organizations with a history of working with minority farmers and ranchers; no less than two civil rights professionals; and no less than two representatives of institutions of higher education with demonstrated experience working with minority farmers and ranchers along with others that Vilsack may select.

     Nominations should describe and document the proposed member′s qualifications and must be received at USDA by May 24. The nomination may be in the form of a letter or on a completed Advisory Committee Membership background Information Questionnaire (Form AD-55). Those nominated for this committee will be required to complete and submit this form.

    The form is available from: Elaine Hauhn, Designated Federal Official (DFO) for the Advisory Committee on Minority Farmers, Office of Advocacy and Outreach, U.S. Department of Agriculture, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW., Whitten Building, 240W, Washington, DC 20250-0522. Phone: (202) 720-1229; Fax (202) 720-2191; Email:

    The form is also available at: