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County Briefs for Jan 3, 2008

False Alarm

WALSENBURG- The Walsenburg Police responded to a silent alarm on Monday, Dec. 31 at both the Walsenburg and La Veta locations of the Community Bank of Southern Colorado.  "Because the addresses of the banks are so similar, we decided to have both checked out,” said Walsenburg Police Chief Larry Baldonado.

    Phone calls to the Walsenburg bank went unanswered, and an officer responding to the scene noted that customers leaving the bank looked “distressed.” Taking no chances, he entered the bank armed with a shotgun.  Chief Baldonado arrived on scene in time to watch his officer go into the bank, and quickly joined him.

    “It turned out to be a total false alarm,” Baldonado said, “but you have to treat each one like it were real.”

Historical Society Program and Meeting

WALSENBURG-  With the rich history of this county, the Huerfano County Historical Society will be planning for 2008 activities and reviewing 2007 at its annual meeting Wednesday, January 9.  Non-members as well as members are welcome at the 5:30 pm meeting in the Walsenburg depot on Main Street (Chamber of Commerce office).

    A short program, Christmas Celebrations in Early Colorado, will be highlighted.  The agenda calls for an update on the Alton Tirey bequest and election of board members.

    The Historical Society oversees the collections in Francisco Fort Museum and Walsenburg Mining Museum and representatives from both museums will give reports.

    2008 memberships are due now also: $12 for individuals ($30 for three years), $18 for couples ($45 for three years), $25 for a family.  Memberships include free passes to the museums.  Mail to President Elaine Lenzini, 115 E. Cedar, Walsenburg, CO 81089.

Democrats Begin Caucus Work

WALSENBURG- The Huerfano County Democrats will hold their monthly meeting at Alys′ in Walsenburg on Wednesday, January 9th at 5:30. Sal Pace and Dan Slater from

the Colorado Democratic Party will be there to assist with "Caucus Training".

If you have any questions, please call Cindy Campbell at 719-742-5511.

Spanish Peaks Library Events Help You Stay Close to Home

by Beth Harper

WALSENBURG- It’s a new year, and a new snow season! With the series of storms over the past few weeks, we thought, wouldn’t it be fun to have a huge amount of programming in January, to provide a local alternative to entertainment in Pueblo or Trinidad?

    The package we’ve put together is pretty exciting. We have our regularly scheduled programs: Story Hour every Friday morning;  Computer Questions & Answers Open Session on alternating Tuesday evening; and the Herbs for Life discussion group’s monthly meeting on January 19.

    After a holiday break, we’re bringing back the monthly Thursday Movie Night – with a twist – instead of just one, a series of four movies beginning Jan. 10.  Visit the library website at to find out more about the movies, or call or come in any time during the week.

    We also have two local speakers giving Saturday morning lectures.

    Mark Gall along with his wife Tippaya, will present a slide show and lecture, “Travels with Tippaya,” about his travels in Southeast Asia on January 12. “I enjoy speaking with folks, and would certainly encourage anyone who has any interest in seeing the pictures, and/or talking about travel to third world countries to speak with me. I retired in March 2005 and hit the road, went to South America, then China, met Tippaya in Bangkok and then we traveled around southeast Asia for 1 1/2 years.”

    Ryan Morris of Country Roots Farm in Pueblo will talk about community-supported agriculture (CSA) on January 19.  In a CSA, a farmer sells farm subscriptions to customers early in the year, and then delivers fresh produce to the subscribers or to a convenient central drop-off point each week during the growing season. Country Roots Farm has drop-off points in Pueblo and Colorado Springs, and may be interested in setting up a drop-off in Walsenburg for the coming 2008 season.  Ryan says, “we take pride and delight in growing "Heirloom Vegetables" for you.  These varieties were grown at a time when vegetables were not shipped one or two thousand miles, they were grown for local people and local markets.   This food is alive with taste and nutrition (best eaten within 4-5 days of purchase) and not meant to last on the shelf for weeks at a time like grocery store varieties that have been bred and developed.  Grocery store varieties are not bred and developed for taste like ours, but instead they are grown to last for weeks on the shelves and to fit certain box sizes for shipping.”

    The complete January schedule is:

Jan. 4: Story Hour, 10:30 am

Jan. 8: Computer Q&A Open Session, 5-8 pm

Jan. 10: movie, 6:30 pm

Jan. 11: Story Hour, 10:30 am

Jan. 12: “Travels with Tippaya” with Mark Gall, 10:30 am

Jan. 17: movie , 6:30 pm

Jan. 18: Story Hour, 10:30 am

Jan. 19: “Community Supported Agriculture” with Ryan Morris, 10:30 am

Jan. 19: Herbs for Life discussion group, 1 pm

Jan. 22: Computer Q&A Open Session, 5-8 pm

Jan. 24: movie, 6:30 pm

Jan. 25: Story Hour, 10:30 am

Jan. 31: movie, 6:30 pm

    If you would like to be reminded about any of these events by email or telephone, please call or drop in anytime, ask at the circulation desk, and we will put your name on a list.

    Of course, if it’s really yucky out there, please stay home and stay safe! Remember that you can renew books over the telephone – just give us a call at 738-2774. 

    Want to watch a movie without having to go out to get one?  If you have a broadband internet connection, click on the My Library DV button on the front page of the library website to access our streaming video service.

Missionaries to Return to South America

WALSENBURG-  Bob and Esperanza Simons are preparing for their return to Colombia, South America in order to continue their missionary work there.   They will be speaking about their work Sunday evening January 6, 2008 at 6:30 pm at the Church of God in Christ at 205 West 10th St. in Walsenburg.

Cold, Snow, and Blow

by William J. Bechaver

HUERFANO- The weather for this holiday season has been anything but welcoming.  Sure, it’s winter in Colorado, but our temperatures for this past week haven’t even been seasonal.  They’ve  dipped far below the average temperatures for our area for this time of year.

    It all started before Christmas.  Temperatures dropped sharply, and we got snow.  With temperatures below freezing, and windchill well below zero, the snow stayed put or turned to ice on our streets and sidewalks.

    We got enough snow for a white Christmas, along with hazardous traveling conditions and dangerously low temperatures.  La Veta Pass was closed for a time and on I-25 conditions were miserable until  north of Greenhorn hill where there was no snow at all.

    Two days later, we got more snow, officially only a couple of inches, but  plenty of wind and wind-chill. It’s hard to get an accurate measurement when the snow s blowing faster than it’s falling.

    In the last days of 2007, temperatures dipped down near zero every night.   An inch of snow, hazardous driving conditions, blowing snow and zero visibility, closed La Veta Pass again on Sunday night.

    Alamosa rang in the new year, with a bone-chilling 31 degrees below zero for the lowest temperature in the nation for the day.

    So, let us ring in the new year, looking forward to the higher temperatures we’ve been promised. May it be a far sight warmer than the last!

Spanish Peaks Regional Health Center Recognizes Staff WALSENBURG– Long term employees of SPRHC were honored in this quarter’s recent ceremony at the facility.  Employees received pins and other recognition at the celebration.  15 Year Honoree: Anthony Aldretti;  10 Year Honoree: Leslye Hobbs;  5 Year Honorees:  Carolyn Whalin, Louann Barr, Diane Keeling and Steven Martinez;  2 Year Honorees: Robert (BJ) Trujillo, Kayla Pacheco, Samantha Hill, Sylvia Vigil, Hillary Andreatta, Barbara Wolf, Ralph Salazar, Jenna Vigil, Rex Andexler, Christopher Wilson, and Bobby Lucero.

     In addition to honoring employees for their years of service, the facility recognized the “Employees of the Quarter,” one each from the nursing home, hospital and shared services.  Winners for the quarter were  Risa Berry of Colorado State Veteran Nursing Home, Louann Barr of the hospital and Jolene Manzanares from  shared service departments.

    Nomination boxes are placed throughout the facility so that employees could suggest a co-worker who exemplifies the “Improve The Lives We Touch” Mission Statement and the “ICARE” guiding principles (Integrity, Compassion, Accountability, Respect & Excellence).  A team of employees make the final selection.  Besides the honor of the title, other recognition is provided.

FIVE YEAR AWARD RECIPIENTS- Carolyn Whalion, Louann Barr, Diane Keeling.