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CAMARADERIE IN THE KITCHEN PG 12 / THE TIGER KING PG 15 / CO-OPS COME TOGETHER DURING COVID-19 PG 20

POUDRE VALLEY RURAL ELECTRIC ASSOCIATION, INC.

MAY 2020

Colorado carousels bring summer fun full circle


IMAGE BY GERD ALTMANN FROM PIX ABAY

Colorado’s small businesses need your support now more than ever. Colorado’s electric cooperatives support local businesses in their communities. One way they are doing that is focusing on the many small Colorado businesses that have been featured on the Discoveries page of this magazine and other similar businesses just trying to make it during this difficult time. Visit coloradocountrylife.coop/ support-colorados-small-businesses to see the wonderful list of Colorado small businesses still open and needing your support.

#CoOpsSupportCO

HOW TO

SUPPORT SMALL BUSINESSES BUY GIFT CARDS TO USE LATER Purchase online or over the phone. SHOP ONLINE Many local businesses offer online shopping. Visit their website to make a digital purchase and get their product delivered to your home. CONNECT ALTERNATIVELY Follow your favorite Colorado businesses on social media, websites and digital newsletters. See if they are offering other ways to connect such as pick-up or home delivery. BUY NOW, PICK UP LATER Give the business a call, pay for a product, set it aside to pickup later. HELP GROW SUPPORT Give a business a shout-out on social media. Leave it a review. Like, share and post on social media; the extra virtual love is appreciated. Be sure to tag your posts using #CoOpsSupportCO


Number 05

Volume 51

May 2020 THE OFFICIAL PUBLICATION OF THE COLORADO RURAL ELECTRIC ASSOCIATION COMMUNICATIONS STAFF Mona Neeley, CCC, Publisher/Editor mneeley@coloradocountrylife.org Cassi Gloe, CCC, Production Manager/Designer cgloe@coloradocountrylife.org Kylee Coleman, Editorial/Admin. Assistant kcoleman@coloradocountrylife.org ADVERTISING Kris Wendtland, Ad Representative advertising@coloradocountrylife.org | 303-902-7276 National Advertising Representative, American MainStreet Publications 611 S. Congress Street, Suite 504, Austin, TX 78704 | 800-626-1181 Advertising Standards: Publication of an advertisement in Colorado Country Life does not imply endorsement by any Colorado rural electric cooperative or the Colorado Rural Electric Association. Colorado Country Life (USPS 469-400/ISSN 1090-2503) is published monthly by Colorado Rural Electric Association, 5400 Washington Street, Denver, CO 80216-1731. Periodical postage paid at Denver, Colorado. ©Copyright 2020, Colorado Rural Electric Association. Call for reprint rights. EDITORIAL Denver Corporate Office, 5400 Washington Street, Denver, CO 80216 mneeley@coloradocountrylife.org | 303-455-4111 coloradocountrylife.coop | facebook.com/COCountryLife Pinterest.com/COCountryLife | Instagram.com/cocountrylife Twitter.com/COCountryLife | YouTube.com/COCountryLife1 Editorial opinions published in Colorado Country Life magazine shall pertain to issues affecting rural electric cooperatives, rural communities and citizens. The opinion of CREA is not necessarily that of any particular cooperative or individual. SUBSCRIBERS Report change of address to your local cooperative. Do not send change of address to Colorado Country Life. Cost of subscription for members of participating electric cooperatives is $4.44 per year (37 cents per month), paid from equity accruing to the member. For nonmembers, a subscription is $9 per year in-state/$15 out-of-state. POSTMASTER Send address changes to Colorado Country Life, 5400 Washington Street, Denver, CO 80216

On the

Cover MAY 2020

Colorado carousels bring summer fun full circle

Photo of Daisy’s Carousel courtesy of the Royal Gorge Bridge and Park. See other Colorado carousels starting on page 16.

“Serenity on the Plains” by John Kerste, a consumer-member of Poudre Valley Rural Electric Association.

4 VIEWPOINT

5 LETTERS

6 ASK THE ENERGY EXPERT

7 YOUR CO-OP NEWS

12 RECIPES

14 NEWS CLIPS

16 COVER STORY A NOSTALGIC SPIN

COCountryLife pinned: It is time to incorporate some veggies into your baked goods. The Family Dinner Project’s Zucchini Muffins are a great place to start. Get the recipe at coloradocountrylife.coop.

20 INDUSTRY

23 GARDENING

24 OUTDOORS

25 YOUR STORIES

26 MARKETPLACE

27 CREATIVE CORNER

28 HOME SAFETY

29 VIRTUAL ACTIVITIES

30 DISCOVERIES

FACEBOOK CHATTER Colorado Rural Electric Association shared: As a cooperative, part of our mission is to support the communities we serve. Especially now in this unprecedented time of need. We are proud to announce that on behalf of our electric co-op members and with the support from CREA, we are making a combined donation to support the Colorado COVID-19 Relief Fund.

Monthly Contest Enter for your chance to win a copy of Eat, Laugh, Talk! The Family Dinner Playbook featured on pages 12 and 13 of this issue. Visit our Contests page at coloradocountrylife. coop to learn how to enter.

coloradocountrylife.coop

PINTEREST SNEAK PEEK

INSTAGRAM PIC of the month cocountrylife posted: A #neighbor brightened our walk with some #sidewalkart. What bright spots are you seeing as you move through your day while practicing #socialdistancing? COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2020

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VIEWPOINT

REFLECTION BY JEFF WADSWORTH

A

s the country works through the current reality of sickness, unemployment, and volatile markets, I want to reflect for a moment on the sacrifices made for this country. To begin, our active military, veterans, and their families are not removed from regular disruption to their lives. Daily sacrifices for our military families are the norm. A glimpse of this reality is something many of us are just beginning to see. Additionally, working through the COVID-19 pandemic has brought some new heroes to the forefront, including first responders, medical personnel, food service providers, and the delivery workforce. Each deserves a helping of gratitude. In reflection of our military, with May being Military Appreciation Month, I am thankful for those who gave the ultimate sacrifice, so that we can enjoy the freedoms their service affords us in this great country of ours. In the words of John F. Kennedy, “As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.” This freedom can truly be played out today, as basic conveniences have been removed and people are battling the new daily routine, or lack thereof. Freedom will always have a cost. At Poudre Valley REA we are grateful to have veterans within our ranks, and we are proud to serve veterans and their families within our local community. In addition to providing safe, reliable, and affordable energy, we care for the veteran community.

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COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2020

PRESIDENT & CEO

ABOUT YOUR CO-OP Our actions through volunteering and sponsorship of various veteran organizations show our ongoing appreciation for those serving and have served. Though the cost of freedom for our country has been high, history teaches us that the only thing worse than fighting for our freedom is losing one’s freedom. As we move into the next chapter of our country from this pandemic and into the future, I hope we all reflect and express gratitude to those that have and continue to make sacrifices to keep us safe and protected. Reflection, now more than ever, is a time to pause, assess the past and the future, and re-align priorities as individuals, families, companies, and our country. Read more about PVREA on pages 7-10.

PVREA serves electricity to 45,000 homes and businesses in Boulder, Larimer, and Weld Counties. We are a member-owned co-op, led by those we serve.

OUR MISSION We are committed to providing safe, reliable, efficient energy solutions with exceptional service to our members.

CONTACT US

1-800-432-1012 pvrea@pvrea.coop www.pvrea.coop

MAILING ADDRESS

Poudre Valley REA PO Box 272550 Fort Collins, CO 80527

BOARD OF DIRECTORS Chair Steven Anderson Larimer County

Director Thaine Michie Larimer County

Vice Chair Rick Johnson Larimer County

Director Jan Peterson Larimer County

Secretary James Fender Larimer County

Director Jack Schneider Weld County

Director Bryan Ehrlich Larimer County

Director Ronald Sutherland Boulder County

Director Peter Hyland Weld County


LETTERS

FROM THE EDITOR

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Staying in touch during the pandemic

BY MONA NEELEY

H

EDITOR

ave you howled at the moon yet? As I write this column in mid-April, howling — at 8 p.m. each evening — has become a way to stay connected to each other as we stay home during the novel coronavirus outbreak. And, at least in the Denver metro area, more and more people have started howling each evening as the stay-at-home orders are extended and the restrictions on our movement tighten. The longer we are isolated from others, the better it feels to go outside and howl with the neighbors in the evenings. Yes, I spend my days online “attending” WebEx meetings and participating in Google Hangout chats. I connect with others through Zoom or plain old conference calls.

But there is usually MONA NEELEY a screen involved and, often, a time lapse. Don’t get me wrong — I am thankful for all of the technology at my fingertips that makes working from home possible and lessens the social isolation. But there is something goofy and wonderful, and even cathartic, about heading outside each evening to enjoy the spring temperatures and howl at the moon — along with thousands of others sharing the same pandemic experience. Mona Neeley is the statewide editor of Colorado Country Life, which is published in coordination with your local electric cooperative.

Autumn Spice Scoops

Rave reviews for recipe

Kudos and a standing ovation for the Autumn Spice Scoops recipe (October ’19). I served it as one of three desserts at a “dessertsonly” neighborhood party (pre-COVID-19). It is an absolutely delicious dessert and easy to make. When a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream tops off a serving in a bowl, it is heaven on earth. Susan Smiley, Westcliffe Sangre de Cristo Electric consumer-member

Coexisting with animals

It would be a pleasant surprise to read an article about animals in Colorado Country Life that highlights animals in their Colorado habitat, praising their resilience, beauty and intelligence. Your outdoor writer regularly focuses on hunting them. Many of your readers appreciate wildlife and coexist with animals. R. Jonardi, Colorado Springs

Landscape with wildfires in mind

I was shocked at the landscaping tips article (March ’19). Most of Colorado is in moderate to severe drought, and the pictured home was an example of what firefighters, mitigation specialists and insurance assessors are telling people NOT to plant around their homes. The plantings illustrated (close to the structure to provide shade) can even lead to structure-to-structure fires in an urban environment. With so much of our state in wildfire risk areas, many of the tips in that article will probably increase risks to homes. Bill Trimarco, Archuleta Country Program Manager Wildlife Adapted Partnership La Plata Electric consumer-member

SEND US YOUR LETTERS Editor Mona Neeley at 5400 Washington St., Denver, CO 80216 or at mneeley@coloradocountrylife.org. Letters may be edited for length. COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2020

5


ASK THE ENERGY EXPERT

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Start Saving Energy Today Saving energy is saving money and can be a fun activity to engage your friends and family. Tactics to save energy come in all shapes and sizes, including steps you can take today at no cost. Energy efficiency also increases the comfortableness of your home, and makes larger projects worth the investment. Visit these two sites to learn how you can take control of your energy use and save today.

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any people are using their time during “social distancing” to complete home projects that have fallen by the wayside — you may have considered replacing your windows for years, but haven’t had the time. Several window companies are finding ways to limit contact with their customers, including offering virtual consultations. Before you make the switch, however, think about the following so you’re better prepared for your consultation: 1. Think beyond windows. Sometimes home improvement projects can grow into something bigger, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. There are advantages to replacing windows and achieving other home improvements at the same time, including new siding, insulation or doors. 2. What is your type? Do you want fixed-pane windows that don’t open at all? Or casement units that open with a crank? How about sliders, or double-hung windows that open from the top and bottom? Maybe awning-style options that open out from the bottom? A bay window can add extra space and light. There are so many options that can fit many different situations. Doing a thorough search online is encouraged. 3. Frame the issues. If the number of styles isn’t bewildering enough, now you get to choose the frame and sash (the inner frame that holds the glass). Vinyl is the least expensive and most common option; it can also be quite energy efficient and does not require painting. Vinyl frames vary greatly in quality and the less expensive models may be susceptible to warping. Aluminum is an affordable option, but if the frames don’t have a thermal break, they can lose heat and cause condensation. Wood windows offer high quality, but the biggest drawbacks are the price and maintenance requirements. There are wood options with vinyl cladding that never need painting. Fiberglass and composite windows are a newer option that fall between vinyl and wood in quality and price. You will also need to consider the type of glass you want and research prices and efficiency. (More on this at coloradocountrylife.coop.) Remember, you will be living with your new windows for years, so be sure to do your research and consider all options. And because new window installation is a complicated process, it’s best to have them installed by a qualified professional with solid references. This column was co-written by Pat Keegan and Brad Thiessen of Collaborative Efficiency.

LEARN MORE ONLINE Learn more about types of glass, researching prices and efficiency by visiting coloradocountrylife. coop and clicking on the Energy tab and then Energy Tips.

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COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2020


YOUR CO-OP NEWS

PVREA Employees and COVID-19 Looking on the bright side of things

N

ew realities and quick adjustments for PVREA were swiftly brought on by COVID-19. PVREA was well equipped to make quick adjustments so we could continue to provide the safe, reliable, and affordable service members expect. PVREA’s office lobby closed to the public in March, and the co-op equipped much of the work force to work from home. Line crews are separated from each other to limit possible spread of the virus, and they head to the job site each day instead of coming to the office. New routines are in place for contractors working on our system in order to keep them away from employees. Deliveries are being quarantined. Co-op management is regularly assessing the situation, and it is unknown at the time of printing this magazine when the co-op office will reopen to the public and employees. The changes implemented have been working well and everyone has adapted to the new norm. Employees have found new ways to connect virtually – through video

conference calls, online chats, and even 5 o’clock virtual social hours. On the bright side of things, as employees are adjusting to working at home and seeing their social calendar dwindle to nothing, they’re also taking advantage of the slower pace of life to reconnect with family. “While I miss seeing my coworkers every day and it’s a challenge to work while taking care of my three-year-old daughter, we’ve been taking the time to reconnect with family and friends virtually. Instead of texting people, every night we take time to FaceTime a friend or family member who we haven’t seen or talked to in awhile,” said PVREA Communications Director Amy Blunck. PVREA Billing and Member Services Director Tara Lobato commented, “Our life is filled with so many activities – from soccer games to dinners with friends and family. It’s been refreshing to slow down and spend a lot of time with one another. I also don’t miss the commute to work, either!” While PVREA employees quickly

Wade Avery, PVREA System Controls Administrator, built himself a new desk to work from home and has great company from his dog Remi. Electric co-ops across the nation are sharing the hashtag #PowerOn to share how we are responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.

changed their work routines, one practice did not change at all. “Our employees have been adaptable and motivated on serving our members during this pandemic. They continue to focus on providing high reliability and delivering exceptional service with safety as our cornerstone,” said PVREA President and CEO Jeff Wadsworth.

Did you know? Many requests and services can be done online or in the app • • • • • • • • •

Make payments Set up auto pay by bank draft or credit card Report an outage Update contact information Access Home Energy Advisor tools Stop service Request tree trimming Submit rebates Report street light outage

Download the free app in the App Store or Google Play.

COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2020

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YOUR CO-OP NEWS

Security Tips for Connected Devices

T

oday’s market offers a plethora of new gadgets and devices that claim to make our homes smarter, safer and more efficient. But as with any new smart technology, consumers should take extra precautions to ensure these devices are secure. Internet-connected cameras have brought significant convenience to the way we monitor the security of our homes, children––even our furry family members! With the simple swipe of a smart phone, homeowners can instantly keep a watchful eye from afar. But in recent months, some consumers found themselves in scary situations when hackers were able to tap into Internet-connected security cameras in their homes. This enabled the hackers to view and speak to the people, including children, inside the homes. As connected devices become increasingly popular, it’s important that we know how to secure our digital lives. The U.S. Department of Commerce offers the following tips for protecting smart devices.

As connected devices, like home monitoring and security cameras, become increasingly popular, it’s important that we know how to secure our digital lives.

Tip 1 Get creative with passwords. Change your device’s factory security settings from the default password. This is one of the most important steps to take in the protection of internet-connected devices. Consider creating the longest password or passphrase permissible, and use familiar phrases you’ll remember, like the lyrics to your favorite song.

Tip 2 Keep tabs on your apps. Most connected devices are supported by a smart phone application. Your smart phone could be filled with apps running in the background or using default permissions you never realized you approved, gathering personal information without your knowledge while also putting your identity and privacy at risk. Check your app permissions and say “no” to privilege requests that don’t make sense.

Tip 3 Secure your network. Properly secure the wireless network you use for Internet-connected devices. Consider placing these devices on a separate and dedicated network.

Tip 4 Connect and protect. Whether it’s your computer, smartphone, game console, camera or other connected devices, the best defense is to stay on top of things by updating to the latest security software, web browser and operating system. If you have the option to enable automatic updates to defend against the latest risks, turn it on.

May 2020

Energy Efficiency Tip of the Month

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COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2020

When the weather is nice, put your grill to use! During summer months, cooking outdoors is a great way to save energy and eliminate unwanted heat from cooking indoors.


YOUR CO-OP NEWS

Thanks for Attending the Virtual Annual Meeting

M

embers tuned in online on April 4 for the Virtual Annual Meeting. A first for PVREA, the meeting was hosted online due to the COVID-19 orders to not hold large in-person

meetings.

This year, 5,126 memberships cast a ballot in the elections. PVREA President and CEO Jeff Wadsworth spoke on the theme “membership amplified” where he highlighted how PVREA is leading the way in low cost service, responsible energy, beneficial electrification, and reliable service. PVREA Board Chair Steve Anderson presented on PVREA’s Grassroots Network, calling on members to sign up and be involved. All members who cast a ballot were entered to win the Grand Prize Home Package, which included outdoor power equipment and smart home gadgets. Congrats to member Robert and Donna Schmid of LaPorte who won the Grand Prize. Those who won door prizes are listed online at pvrea.coop/annualmeeting. PVREA also gave away a $1,000 scholarship to a high school senior who tuned into the Annual Meeting and submitted their entry to win. Congrats to Windsor High School senior Brookelle Otte; she plans to attend University of Wyoming in the fall.

PVREA’s First Ever Virtual Annual Meeting PVREA Board Chair Steve Anderson gives his report during the virtual Annual Meeting on April 4 at pvrea.coop/annualmeeting.

Election Results Larimer County District L, Position L-2 Steve Anderson District L, Position L-6 Thaine Michie Weld County District W, Position W-1 Pete Hyland

Office Closed The PVREA office will be closed on May 25 in observance of Memorial Day.

Unclaimed Credits Listed Online

I

n 2019, the Co-op paid $3.2 million in member credits to members who received service from PVREA for the years 1993, 2004, and 2018 or any combination of those years. In September last year, current and previous members during the years mentioned above, received their credits either on their September bill as a credit or received a check in the mail if the credit amount was over $100. Every year there are some of these checks that are returned to us because the Post Office could not deliver them for a variety of reasons. We have published a list of unclaimed capital credits online at www.pvrea.coop/member-credits. If you see your name, or the name of someone you know, contact Member Services at 1-800-432-1012.

COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2020

9


YOUR CO-OP NEWS

Electrical Safety in the home

A

s we’re all spending most of our time at home, this may be the perfect time to evaluate the safety of your home’s electrical system. The electricity that powers our lives has become so commonplace that people sometimes forget the importance of using it safely. Nobody makes electrical safety more of a priority than those who rely upon it every single day. Which is why there’s no better way to ensure you can use electricity safely in your home than by learning about our lineman approved electrical safety tips. Here are a few areas of your home to check for electrical safety, but take it a step further by navigating our interactive, online tool at pvrea.coop/electrical-safety.

1.

Electrical outlets: Faulty electrical outlets are a leading cause in home fires. As outlets age, so do the wires behind them that you can’t see. Any loose, damaged or warm-tothe-touch outlets should be repaired or replaced.

2.

Electrical wiring: Outdated wiring is another common cause of electrical fires. Frequently tripped breakers, flickering lights and burning smells are clear warning signs. If your home is more than 20 years old, it may not be able to handle today’s increased power load. If you suspect your home’s wiring is outdated, leave this one to the pros and contact a qualified electrician.

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COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2020

3. 4.

Overloaded cords and outlets: Extension cords are not permanent solutions. If your big-screen TV, home theater system and other electronics are plugged into one extension cord, it’s time to call an electrician and install additional outlets.

Old appliances: Older appliances are more likely to have loose or damaged wiring, which means they’re more likely to catch fire. Check older appliances for damage and determine if it’s time to upgrade or replace. Also check to ensure you’re using appliance-grade outlets. A qualified electrician can help with installation.


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RECIPES

CAMARADERIE IN THE KITCHEN T A B L E T A L K

At a loss for words at the dinner table? Try this fun song game and conversation starters and get gabbing and giggling. HOW TO PLAY

The first player chooses a word or category (e.g., love). Each person at the table then has to come up with a song that uses the word in the lyrics and then sing at least a verse of it. So, for the “love” example, one person could sing part of “Love Stinks,” “Crazy Love” or “Love is All You Need.” After everyone is done, the next person chooses a new word or category and the hits keep on coming!

Recipes and games to keep families riveted BY AMY HIGGINS

| RECIPES@COLOR ADOCOUNTRYLIFE .ORG

Rally the troops. It’s time to make a meal or snack together.

Zucchini Muffins 3 large eggs 2 cups granulated sugar 2 cups grated zucchini 1 cup olive oil 1 tablespoon vanilla extract 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

CONVERSATION

Keep the entertainment going with conversation starters about movies and music. Here are some ideas to get you started: • If you could have a character from a movie as a best friend, who would it be? • If you could jump into any scene from a movie, what scene would you choose and why? • W h at i s t h e greatest song ever written? • What band do you think is the most underrated? Why? • Wo u l d y o u rather be a rock star or a movie star? Why?

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COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2020

L

ately, it seems we’re spending more time cooking at home to feed our families, so why not make it a family affair? Whether you have young children, teenagers or someone a little less familiar with the ins and outs of your kitchen, you can “rally the troops” and make a meal or snack together and maybe even create a new tradition. Eat, Laugh, Talk! The Family Dinner Playbook is teeming with great recipes, of course, but it also includes a variety of tips to inspire conversation, entertainment and togetherness in the kitchen and at the dinner table. So, get cooking!

1 teaspoon salt 2 teaspoons baking soda 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line, or grease and flour, tins for 2 dozen muffins. Beat together the eggs and sugar until well combined. Stir in the zucchini, oil and vanilla extract. In a separate medium-sized bowl, whisk together the cinnamon, salt, baking soda and flour. Stir into the wet ingredients, mixing just until combined. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin cups, filling about 3/4 full. Bake the muffins for 20 to 25 minutes until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Makes about 2 dozen muffins.

Photos courtesy of Eat, Laugh, Talk: The Family Dinner Playbook by The Family Dinner Project, published by Familius and available anywhere books are sold.


RECIPES

Orange Thyme Baked Chicken and Rice 2 tablespoons unsalted butter 1 tablespoon olive oil 8 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs 2 teaspoons salt, divided 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, divided 12 fresh, whole thyme sprigs, divided 1 large onion, sliced 3 cloves garlic, minced Juice and zest of 1 navel orange 2 cups long-grain brown rice 4 cups chicken stock 1 bay leaf

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat, melt the butter and olive oil together. Season the skin side of the chicken thighs with 1 teaspoon of salt and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper. Working in batches to keep from overcrowding the pan, place the chicken thighs into the hot oil and butter, skinside down. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes until the skins are very golden brown and crisp. Turn the chicken pieces over and cook for another minute. Remove the chicken pieces to a plate and repeat with the remaining chicken. Standing back from the pot, carefully toss 8 of the whole thyme sprigs into the hot drippings. Fry the thyme for 1 minute, then remove the stems from the oil with tongs and discard. Add the sliced onions and garlic to the pot and cook, stirring, for 3 to 5 minutes until soft and beginning to brown. Add the orange juice to

the pot and stir, scraping any browned bits off the bottom. Pour the rice into the pan and stir to coat the grains of rice in the liquid and distribute the onions and garlic throughout the rice. Add the chicken stock to the pot and season with the remaining salt and pepper. Add the bay leaf and stir well. Nestle the chicken thighs on top of the rice mixture and pour in any juices that were left on the plate. Cover the Dutch oven tightly and bring to a boil. As soon as the liquid is boiling, transfer the covered dish to the oven. Bake for 1 hour until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is fully cooked. Remove the lid from the pot and sprinkle the hot chicken and rice with the zest of the orange and the leaves from the remaining 4 sprigs of thyme.

Dessert "Sushi" 3 tablespoons butter 1 (10-ounce) package marshmallows 6 cups Rice Krispies-style cereal 1 cup sliced strawberries 2 bananas, cut into matchsticks 1 mango, cut into matchsticks Chocolate syrup (optional) Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil or parchment paper. Lightly grease the lining to provide extra insurance against sticking. In a medium saucepan, melt together the butter and marshmallows, stirring until smooth. In a large bowl, combine the melted marshmallow mixture with the cereal, tossing until well coated. Using wet hands to keep the cereal from sticking, scoop the cereal mixture onto the prepared baking sheet and press down firmly to make an even, thin layer that covers the whole pan. Let the cereal mixture set for 10-15 minutes before making the "sushi." To cut the "sushi," use a sharp knife to cut the cereal mixture in half lengthwise, then in quarters crosswise (you should end up with eight equal rectangles). Give each person a rectangle of cereal treat and set out the sliced fruit. Each person can fill their own "sushi" rolls by lining up sliced fruit along one of the short edges of their rectangle, then rolling the whole thing up inside the cereal treat. This can be messy — you might want to lightly but firmly squeeze as you go, to make sure the roll stays together. Use a sharp knife to slice the “sushi” rolls into four pieces. Serve with chocolate syrup “soy sauce” for dipping, if desired.

QUICK TIP / BAKE AHEAD If you’re pressed for time during the week, you can make this one-pot chicken and rice dish over the weekend and reheat single servings on a hectic evening. It holds up well to leftover use. COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2020

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NEWS CLIPS

ELECTRIC CO-OPS SUPPORT COVID-19 RELIEF

E

xemplifying the seventh cooperative principle, “concern for community,” Colorado’s electric cooperatives joined with the state’s co-op power supplier and one of its lenders to donate money to Colorado relief funds in early April. The funds were sent as the first stay-at-home order was issued and co-op

consumer-members found themselves out of work and businesses were forced to alter their operations or close. The C olorado Rural Electric Association, the trade association for Colorado’s electric cooperatives, donated $5,000 to the Colorado Relief Fund. Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association, which supplies electricity to 18 of Colorado’s 22 electric cooperatives, donated money to relief funds in Colorado, Nebraska, New Mexico and Wyoming that totaled $200,000. Tri-State serves 46 electric co-ops in those four states. CoBank, a cooperative bank serving electric co-ops and other agribusinesses and Farm Credit associations nationwide, donated $150,000 to the University of Colorado Foundation to support UCHealth’s response as the state’s leading provider of acute care for COVID-19

victims. The bank also increased funds in its dollar-for-dollar matching program that allows local co-ops to assist nonprofit organizations in rural communities. Concern for community is one of the guiding principles for not-for-profit cooperatives. Electric cooperatives, which were formed by local communities, have a long history of supporting their local areas in times of crisis. The co-op response to the COVID-19 crisis is another example of that. “Cooperatives know well that we are all stronger when we combine our resources and work together to serve our communities,” said Rick Gordon, chairman of Tri-State and a director at Mountain View Electric Association in Limon. “CREA is working throughout this crisis to support its member cooperatives as they support their local communities,” said CREA Executive Director Kent Singer. “Together we will get through this.”

Share Your Pet’s Story

Co-ops Support Local Businesses

Do you have the best pet? What makes that dog, horse or parakeet so special? Tell us.

Colorado Country Life added a page to its website to make it easier to support Colorado businesses during the coronavirus pandemic. You’ll find the page at coloradocountrylife.coop/supportco l o ra d o s - s m a l l - b u s i n e s s e s . Companies that have been featured in previous issues of the magazine, as well as many companies from our files that are waiting to be featured, are listed with a description of what they offer and contact information. There are listings for apparel, handmade products, bath and beauty items, Colorado foods and drinks, books, jewelry and so much more. All of it is sold by small Colorado companies. So logon and enjoy some shopping.

Enter Colorado Country Life’s Pet Story Contest by May 22 and share your pet’s story. The best story will win $250, with second place earning $150 and third place $100. And the winning story will be published in the September issue of the magazine, along with a few more favorites. Visit our website at coloradocountrylife. coop and click on Contests and then 2020 Pet Story Contest for a full list of rules and a form to enter the contest. Those without a computer may send entries of no more than 300 words to Pet Stories, 5400 Washington

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St., Denver, CO 80216. Make sure to include a photo of your pet as well as your name, address, phone number, email and local electric co-op name.


NEWS CLIPS Co-op volunteers repair the inside of a home in need.

Volunteers Help Host Community During National Annual Meeting Electric co-op directors, managers and staff members volunteer their labor to help others.

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hen electric cooperative directors, managers and staff members attend the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association annual meeting each year, several of them participate in projects to help whichever city is hosting the event. Earlier this year, before COVID-19 became a pandemic, New Orleans, Louisiana, was the destination. More than 100 volunteers from electric co-ops around the country arrived in New Orleans a day early to make repairs on five

homes in need. The volunteers joined forces with Rebuilding Together New Orleans to work in the city’s Gentilly and Carrolton neighborhoods. They hung drywall, repaired siding, painted, built wheelchair ramps and more. These projects marked the fourth national service day in New Orleans since 2005, when the community service day became part of the annual event. Since then, projects have been completed in San Diego, California; Nashville, Tennessee; and Orlando, Florida.

One crew paints a home in New Orleans prior to a co-op meeting.

THE TIGER KING: a Fellow Electric Co-op Consumer-Member

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nnual meetings at the electric co-op in Lindsay, Oklahoma, could have been colorful if Joe Exotic, owner of the G.W. Exotic Animal Park and the self-proclaimed Tiger King, had shown up. Exotic, a flamboyant, over-the-top big cat owner, was among the local Rural Electric Cooperative’s 12,000 consumer-members. He owned the 16-acre big cat zoo featured in the popular Netflix documentary, “Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness.” That park required a variety of services from the local electric co-op. REC journeyman lineman Stoney Robbins said nighttime calls at the facility could be particularly creepy, recounting one such visit to check service after an outage. “We had flashlights and every time you would shine the light around you, all you could see were eyes watching you and the lions jumping on the cage,” said Robbins. “I

PHOTO BY MANA5280 ON UNSPL ASH

think that was the fastest I have ever checked voltage, and then we got out of there.” In the documentary, Exotic says that it’s not just the cats that visitors came to see. It was him and his big personality. But what’s he like when the cameras aren’t rolling? “I can assure you from watching the documentary, he’s 100% the same,” said Megan Lawrence, the co-op’s manager

of member services and marketing. “His language, how he portrays himself … all of those are the same. He’s a colorful individual and he definitely lives to be who he wants to be.” Lawrence said she’s never met him herself and that Exotic hadn’t attended an annual meeting, but Lindsay, Oklahoma, is a small town with few secrets. Line crews report friendly encounters with Exotic and say that zoo crews took care to move the animals away from worksites. Today, 39 of Exotic’s tigers and three bears live in Colorado at the Wild Animal Sanctuary near Keenesburg, which is, coincidently, on electric co-op lines, served by United Power, Inc., in Brighton. Victoria A. Rocha, staff writer at the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association

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COVER STORY

Colorado carousels bring simple summer fun full circle

BY MATT VINCENT

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nce upon a time in America, brightly colored carousels spinning round and round to the sound of Wurlitzer organs were the ultimate in entertainment. From the Gilded Age to the 1920s, an estimated 6,000 mechanized merry-go-rounds were built for amusement parks and municipalities across the country, all trying to attract the biggest crowds and best reviews. Short of a three-ring circus, it was the hottest ticket in town. According to the National Carousel Association, thousands of “classic wood carousels” were built and sold. Sadly, less than 200 survive today. But the good news is that 11 of them can be found scattered across Colorado from the mountains to the eastern plains. If you’re looking for a weekend getaway once all of the COVID-19 restrictions are lifted, one or more of these colorful carousels would be a fun, easy destination. Here is a look at a few you might want to check out.

A roaring tiger is one of 46 animals on the historic Kit Carson County Carousel.


KIT CARSON COUNTY CAROUSEL Open during the summer months

Back in 1927, three elected officials in rural Kit Carson County took a big chance. When the Philadelphia Toboggan Company carousel at Elitch Gardens in Denver went up for sale that year, the county commissioners bought it for $1,200 and had it shipped to Burlington. The officials were ridiculed for their purchase and eventually drummed out of office. Fast-forward to today. The Kit Carson County Carousel is now considered a priceless carousel, one of the best in the nation. It was designated as a National Historic Site in 1987 and draws thousands of visitors annually to Burlington. You might say it was the most well-spent money ever “wasted” in rural Kit Carson County. Almost a century later, those three county commissioners — C.J. Buchanan, G.W. Huntley and I.D. Messenger — are now considered visionaries.

You might say it was the most well-spent money ever “wasted” in rural Kit Carson County. Following an extensive 25-year restoration project, the Kit Carson County Carousel was returned to its original condition in 2001. Its many one-of-a-kind oil paintings and intricately hand-carved animals — horses, goats, giraffes, camels, lions and deer — were painstakingly cleaned and repainted by art conservators John Pogzeba and Will Morton in the late 1970s. An equally daunting restoration was also done on “The Monster,” a priceless 1909 Wurlitzer Military Band Organ containing 255 pipes, bass and snare drums.

Carousels bring out smiles in riders of all ages.

CAROUSEL OF HAPPINESS

Indoor carousel is open year-round Charles Looff was one of the nation’s most talented carousel makers. A master woodcarver who immigrated to New York City from Denmark in 1870, Looff built the first carousel at Coney Island. One of his later masterpieces was sold to a small park near Salt Lake City in 1910, but the Saltair Park Carousel fell on hard times and was sold to the Utah State School in 1959. There, it was rebuilt and maintained by the school’s handicapped residents until a decision was made to scrap the carousel. All of its hand-carved animals were sold to private collectors. Fortunately for Colorado, the story of the Saltair Park Carousel did not end there. As a young soldier with the U.S. Marine Corps in Vietnam, Scott Harrison carried a small hand-operated music box with him during those turbulent times, a precious gift from his sister. When things got tough Harrison would listen to Chopin’s melancholy arrangement of “Tristesse” on the small music box. Tristesse, by the way, is a French word meaning sadness or sorrow. The music was Harrison’s way of escaping the madness of Vietnam, to imagine a swirling carousel in a faraway mountain meadow.

When Harrison returned home, he eventually settled in the mountains above Boulder. While attending a carousel convention with his daughter in Michigan in 1985, Harrison heard about the empty Looff carousel frame gathering dust in Utah. He immediately contacted the school and bought it for $2,000. Later, he and a friend drove to Utah, disassembled it and hauled his dream back to Nederland. Then the former U.S. Marine taught himself how to carve and for the next 26 years Harrison carved animals out of wood. By 2010 he finished more than 50. It didn’t take long for the community of Nederland to embrace and adopt Harrison’s project. Through fundraisers, grants and donations, more than $700,000 was raised for what became the Carousel of Happiness, officially dedicated on Memorial Day in 2010 as part of a remembrance service for all military veterans — and for two of Harrison’s fellow Marines who never made it back from Vietnam. Today in this Colorado mountain valley, the music comes not from a small music box but rather from an original 1913 Wurlitzer Organ.

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COVER STORY Visitors take a ride on the carousel at the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo near Colorado Springs.

LAKESIDE CAROUSEL

Available when the amusement park is open, for an additional 50 cents The story behind every old carousel is sometimes more interesting than the carousel itself. That could be true with the popular carousel at Lakeside Amusement Park near Denver. The Lakeside Carousel is one of only a handful of surviving “roundabouts” made by American carousel pioneer Charles Wallace Parker. Born in Illinois in 1864, Parker’s family moved to the bustling Kansas cattle town of Abilene in 1869 during a time when herds of Texas longhorns were still being driven north on the Chisholm Trail. Always an entrepreneur and builder, Parker purchased an Allan Herschell carousel in the early 1890s and began tinkering and testing new mechanisms and setups. Then he began building his own amusement rides in Abilene in 1894. To advertise his rides, Parker traveled the carnival circuits across America’s heartland. As demand for Parker’s rides increased, he eventually opened a bigger factory in 1911 in Leavenworth, Kansas, where the C.W. Parker Carousel Museum is still headquartered, attracting visitors from around the world. The owners of Lakeside acquired their Parker classic in 1908, and it’s been spinning for over a century. What makes the Lakeside Carousel unique among hardcore carousel aficionados, according to the NCA, is the style of the distinctive carvings — so distinctive that they are often described as “moving folk art.” In fact, some believe this carousel represents a collaboration of carvings done by different woodcarvers from the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

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PUEBLO PARKS CAROUSEL

Open throughout the summer months Built in 1911, the old City Park Carousel has seen four different owners in more than a century. And it could have been lost completely to age and disrepair had it not been for a group of concerned citizens led by George Williams, who stepped in to oversee its restoration and preservation in 1957. That restoration work was completed in 1985. Like the historic carousel at Lakeside Amusement Park, Pueblo’s carousel is a C.W. Parker model (#72) featuring 36 hand-carved horses, a chariot and a spinning “lovers tub,” all carved by master woodcarvers Solomon Stein and Harry Goldstein at the turn of the 19th century in a style reminiscent of the original Coney Island carousels. Its powerful big band music, of course, comes courtesy of a fully restored 1920 Wurlitzer Band Organ. In 1983 it was listed on the National Registry of Historic Places, and in 2018 it was renamed the George R. Williams Memorial Carousel.

CHEYENNE MOUNTAIN ZOO CAROUSEL Available when the zoo is open

It all began with a little black bear statue, a gift given to Spencer Penrose in 1916. The noted Colorado businessman and entrepreneur had no place to keep the little bear so he put it on display for guests at his world famous Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs. As more animal acquisitions followed, Penrose decided to move his animal menagerie to the foothills southwest of Colorado Springs in 1926. That 140-acre tract then became the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, which was recently voted as one of the top 10 zoos in the nation by USA Today. In 1933, while visiting the Century of Progress Fair in Chicago, Penrose reportedly fell in love with an elaborately decorated carousel made by the Allan Herschell Company of New York. He negotiated with the owners for several years before they finally agreed to sell it to him. Penrose’s carousel started spinning in Colorado in 1937 and today remains the centerpiece of the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo.


Through grants from the History Colorado Center and the NCA, the carousel underwent two major restoration efforts: the first in 1998 and the second in 2015. Today it has been meticulously restored to its original condition and is listed on the Colorado State Register of Historic Properties.

ROYAL GORGE CAROUSEL

Available when the park is open Daisy’s Carousel at the Royal Gorge Bridge and Park outside of Cañon City is not historic. In fact, the current carousel has only been in use since 2015. The previous one, which was added to the park’s playland in 1993, was destroyed in 2013 when a wildfire burned most of the park structures. As part of the rebuild, the new carousel, with its vintage look and sound, was purchased for the children’s play area. What makes this carousel unique is that it has some of the best views of any carousel in Colorado. Perched just back from the side of the Royal Gorge itself, the riders circle past views of the Royal Gorge Bridge, the gorge below and the Sangre de Cristo mountains beyond.

Each of these carousels and the other Colorado carousels all add a fun spin to summer outings. You’ll find a complete list of Colorado carousels on our website so that, when restrictions are lifted and we can all get back to exploring our state, you’ll have some destinations in mind. Matt Vincent, a member of the Western Writers of America and a former editor for ESPN Outdoors, is a freelance writer and photographer who loves to explore Colorado’s northeastern plains and beyond.

Children enjoy a ride on the Royal Gorge carousel located outside Cañon City.

This summer, explore the “moving folk art” across Colorado. This beautifully restored pony is one of several on the Kit Carson County Carousel in Burlington.

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INDUSTRY

Co-ops Come Together During COVID-19 Sharing resources, information, electric co-ops keep the power on BY AMY HIGGINS

| AHIGGINS@COLOR ADOCOUNTRYLIFE.ORG

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n the wake of COVID-19, Colorado’s electric cooperatives have quickly altered the way they deliver their essential services. It’s no doubt more challenging, but they are still continually looking for ways to help their communities. After all, “concern for community” is one of the seven cooperative principles each co-op passionately stands by.

“Concern for community” is one of the seven cooperative principles each co-op passionately stands by. Tending to the welfare of their families, friends, communities and worldwide population, Colorado’s electric cooperatives are adhering to their own safety guidelines as well as those provided by the Colorado Rural Electric Association, the local and national governments and the World Health Organization and Centers

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for Disease Control and Prevention. While some co-ops weren’t initially equipped to do so, their employees swiftly figured out how to perform their work duties remotely and are using emails, phone calls and video chats to meet with fellow employees. Line crews are maintaining safe distances when on the job, and those few who still operate at co-op offices are performing maximum sanitization practices and distancing from others to make certain they’re available to consumer-members without the need of face-to-face interaction. Over the last several weeks of uncertainty, Coloradans had to learn the ropes of “social distancing,” which can be contradictory to how they typically operate, including those electric co-op personnel still working in the field. “The rule [in our communities] is everything is about shaking hands, so it’s a little bit of a change from what they’re used to,” said Dale Kishbaugh, director of safety and loss control at CREA, adding, “Some of the members may look at it as guys being rude for not wanting to shake their hands, but the situation that we’re in, you’ve got to realize, it’s the best thing for them.” The biggest challenge, Kishbaugh said, has been communication. “Our [line crews] are really, really good at hands-on. And having to convert over and try and put it

into words in an email is a lot more challenging than we ever envisioned it would be,” he explained. Since social distancing and sanitation standards were established, line crews have been relying on emails and phone calls to relay information instead of the face-to-face meetings they were accustomed to pre-COVID. CREA’s safety and loss control department is creating weekly videos to encourage and assist the crews when they’re on the job, highlighting the importance of maintaining safety practices and staying physically and psychologically healthy, among many other things. Topics have included the importance of personal protective equipment (PPE), job briefings and stress management. Kishbaugh stressed the importance of getting outside, talking through stressors with someone you can count on and keeping family life and work life separated as much as possible. In-house employees have also experienced the growing pains of change. “Initially, simply closing our offices to any member access was a paradigm shift,” said Tadius Huser from the member services team at Highline Electric Association in Holyoke. “We have drop boxes and drivethrough windows that still function, as well


INDUSTRY as staffed offices to take calls. Eventually we worked on providing options for employees to work from home, and our IT team has done an exceptional job reacting to this need as, until this pandemic, we didn’t have a work -from-home option.” Poudre Valley Rural Electric Association in Fort Collins recently held its first ever virtual annual meeting, with nearly 700 consumer-members tuning in — a considerable drop in comparison to the 1,800 average, but notable given today’s circumstances. “We certainly wish we were able to do this annual meeting in person like we’ve done for over 80 years. However, with the times we find ourselves in, that just isn’t possible,” said PVREA President and CEO Jeff Wadsworth in his opening remarks. “We look forward to next year when we’re able to meet in person.” Andy Carter, member engagement manager at Cortez-based Empire Electric Association, said it was initially a challenge to get a work-at-home system in place with an IT department of two people and many staff members who never work from home. He explained: “We are a small co-op (60 employees) and, while we cross train employees, we don’t have a lot of depth to cover all of the normal duties if employees become ill.” But the message has remained the same throughout Colorado’s electric co-op territories: “Our crews may be staggered and some of our employees may be working at home, but none of these changes impact the reliability of our services,” said Sarah Schaefer, communications supervisor and public information officer at Mountain View Electric Association, with offices in Falcon, Limon and Monument.

Our crews may be staggered and some of our employees may be working at home, but none of these changes impact the reliability of our services.” — Sarah Schaefer, Mountain View Electric Association

CO-OPS COLLABORATE “Cooperation among cooperatives,” another cooperative principle, is significant for information sharing, brainstorming and assisting in a slew of ways, especially when the answers aren’t particularly evident. “I am in regular communications with several other comparable cooperatives in Colorado. We are sharing ideas and resources, and brainstorming solutions. It’s a very collaborative and supporting

environment,” said Hillary Knox, vice president of communications at La Plata Electric Association in Durango, adding, “no one has ever dealt with anything like this before.” Colorado’s electric cooperatives utilize the “cooperation among cooperatives” principle in a variety of ways, and always have. Utilities collaborate with local co-ops, CREA and the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association to help with communications efforts, both internally and externally; assist in a variety of local disaster relief efforts; dispatch assistance; share resources; and much more. “The beauty of ‘cooperation among cooperatives’ and working together is that we’re stronger and better for it,” said Christmas Wharton, communications manager at Grand Valley Power in Grand Junction. “There is a special camaraderie among electric co-ops — we’re not competitors, we’re family. We have been for over 80 years,” said Amy Blunck, communications director at PVREA.

Amy Blunck, communications director at Poudre Valley Rural Electric Association, works at home during the mandatory statewide stay-at-home order issued by Gov. Jared Polis.

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INDUSTRY MAKING AN IMPACT To help with COVID-19 relief efforts, several organizations are making financial contributions, including CREA, Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association and CoBank, a cooperative bank that serves agribusinesses, rural infrastructure providers and Farm Credit associations throughout the United States. CoBank recently announced that it is committing $1.4 million, Tri-State donated $200,000 and CREA contributed $5,000 toward those efforts. Colorado’s electric cooperatives are also contributing to COVID-19 relief efforts. For example, Mountain Parks Electric made a generous donation to Mountain Family Center — both based in Granby — to help vulnerable populations faced with hardship in Grand and Jackson counties pay their electric bills during the COVID-19 outbreak. GVP recognizes the hardships its community is incurring in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, including small businesses. GVP is hosting several contests on Facebook that will give purchased gift certificates from local restaurants, service providers and boutiques to winners. The electric co-op also hosted a virtual food drive, and several of its employees took it upon themselves to sew face masks for local health care providers. “Our employees, even if it’s just time or energy, all contribute to our communities in the most wonderful ways,” Wharton said. “It’s because we’re a part of our community, and a rising tide lifts all boats.” TOGETHER WE’RE STRONGER It seems most folks recognize the gravity of the coronavirus pandemic, yet others underestimate the importance of social distancing and the toll it takes on all those surrounding them when they fail to do so. “That’s why they had to go to the extent of closing everything down — it’s because people weren’t following directions,” Kishbaugh stressed. “That’s why the restaurants are in the situation they’re in now — people kept congregating at the restaurants and [other places].”

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COVID-19 has had a detrimental effect on lives, livelihoods and the economy worldwide, and experts don’t envision a sudden “return to normalcy,” but following the guidelines presented by our health experts and legislators can help us get on the road to recovery. Right now, many are out of work and unable to afford provisions or pay their bills. However, if you take a look around, acts of kindness are being performed all around us, and companies, like your electric co-op, are urging consumer-members to contact them if they are struggling to pay their bills. “I would like to acknowledge the stress and emotional toll it takes on the customer service reps working the phones making payment arrangements with our members who are scared and not sure how they will pay their bills. It’s a lot to do all day when they themselves are struggling with some of the same issues,” said Kathy Bertrand, member services manager at Yampa Valley Electric Association, based in Steamboat Springs and Craig.

Bottom line is, we’re in this together. “We urge our members to take the COVID-19 pandemic seriously and avoid all nonessential travel,” Blunck said. “Take this opportunity to enjoy the great outdoors in our beautiful state and spend more quality time with family. Our nation is strong, and we will get through this together.” Amy Higgins has been writing for Colorado Country Life for nearly a decade and has a good understanding about the topics that affect its readership.

Take this opportunity to enjoy the great outdoors in our beautiful state and spend more quality time with family. Our nation is strong, and we will get through this together.” — Amy Blunck, Poudre Valley Rural Electric Association


GARDENING

Shower Your Garden with Flowers Add the newest blooms to your space for eye-catching color

BY VICKI SPENCER

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MASTER GARDENER | GARDENING@COLOR ADOCOUNTRYLIFE .ORG

very summer my garden becomes more and more robust. Over time, my plants have become established and perennials continue to spread and fill in spaces. This is handy for someone who doesn’t like weeding, but I am constantly thinning plants and expanding garden borders to include new flower varieties. Here are some of my favorites this year: There are three All-America Selections trial winners that caught my attention this spring. Main Street Beale Street coleus was the first coleus to be named a winner and the title was well-deserved. The lush, bushy plant holds its deep red foliage throughout the season. It’s ideal for any garden as it can be grown in full sun or shade. American Gold Rush rudbeckia is another winner. It’s a compact, dome-like plant with narrow leaves and a multitude of blossoms. It makes a great border plant as it seems to repel deer. If you are looking for a butterfly magnet, the third winner, Sombrero® Baja Burgundy echinacea, has vibrant red flowers that bloom from midsummer to the first frost in fall.

My other favorites include Cuphea honeybells and Daucus carota “Dara.” Cuphea honeybells features long-blooming, tubular-shaped, rose-red flowers that blend into yellow tips. They are drought tolerant and attract hummingbirds and other pollinators. Dara is a beautiful long-stemmed flower with feathery foliage topped by airy flowers that will add contrast to the AAS winners already mentioned. The tiny flowers, ranging from deep burgundy to blush pink, are also lovely additions to indoor bouquets. You can sow seeds now for summer-to-fall blooms. Another plant with interesting foliage is Heuchera Northern Exposure™ “Sienna.” It is a perfect perennial border plant with light green leaves that change during the summer to orange-chartreuse with a pronounced red vein pattern. In addition to enjoying the foliage, you will be delighted when wispy flowers suddenly appear. Proven Winners® also introduced a new ground cover: Rock ‘N Grow® “Boogie Woogie.” It has variegated leaves and yellow flowers that bloom in early summer. It is perfect for hot, sunny spaces. Rainbow

Rhythm® “Sound of My Heart” daylily is another Proven Winners® plant that can survive harsh Colorado conditions. It produces stunning 5-inch, pastel pink flowers with wide, purple eyes and matching purple on the tips of ruffled petals. If you love bleeding hearts, you should try Dicentra “Pink Diamonds,” which is a smaller alpinetype plant with blue-green, fern-like foliage that explodes with flowers. It does best in full sun and doesn’t mind our dry climate. Finally, if you are looking for something unique and have space, I recommend the AAS edible winner, Pumpkin Blue Prince. Its vigorous vines produce blue, flattened pumpkins that provide an interesting contrast. As a bonus, its deep orange flesh is tender and delicious when baked. If you are like me, it’s hard to resist the latest flower varieties. Even if you don’t really need more plants, trying something new is half the fun of gardening. Gardener Vicki Spencer has an eclectic background in conservation, water, natural resources and more.

LEARN MORE ONLINE Read previous gardening columns at coloradocountrylife.coop. Click on Gardening under Living in Colorado.

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OUTDOORS

Tall Tale or Telltale Trace of Drakes? Dissecting fly story fact from fiction BY DENNIS SMITH

OUTDOORS@COLOR ADOCOUNTRYLIFE .ORG

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was chatting with a guy in the fly shop recently who told me how he had lucked into a hatch of Gray Drakes on the Big Thompson last year about this time, and enjoyed some of the best dry fly fishing of his life. He didn’t say he caught a lot of fish, only that he had a lot of fun catching the ones he did. “Mostly browns. Chunky ones: 12 to 13 inches,” he said, adding, “and a 16-incher, too. It was wonderful.” He seemed tickled that he’d been there to see the bugs come off in the first place, but he was really proud that he figured them to be Gray Drakes right off the bat. He matterof-factly tied on a size 12 Gray Wulff dry fly and proceeded to “just whack ’em,” as he put it. The thing is, the guy said he didn’t know much about trout stream entomology, but he did know a big fly from a little one and these were big. He’d also heard the big ones are called drakes and these were obviously gray, so he called them — what else? — Gray Drakes. He tied on a big, gray dry fly, and bam! Fish on. Textbook. Now, whether they were actually Gray Drakes or not remains something of a puzzle to me. In the 25 years or so that I’ve

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been fishing the Big T, I’ve never seen a Gray Drake hatch on the river. Nor do I know anyone else who has. And, I’ve never heard anyone talk about Gray Drakes on the Big T. I’ve heard them talk about Green Drakes, Brown Drakes, Mahogany, and Speckled Drakes, but never Gray Drakes. I’ve heard about the Yellow Sallies, the Golden Stones, the March Browns, the BWOs and PMDs, Red Quills, Blue Quills, Ginger Quills, Quill Gordons, the little Black Caddis flies, the Early Black Stoneflies, and 11 different kinds of midges. Willow Flies and Crane Flies, and the nocturnal, aquatic moths (I’ve actually seen these things). But Gray Drakes? No one’s ever mentioned Gray Drakes to me. None of which proves a thing, I know, except possibly, I need to pay more attention to the bugs on the water. Or pay more attention to the fishermen I talk to. It does make the point nicely, though, that trying to mimic the flies on the water with an artificial fly of the approximate size and color is more a matter of common sense than complicated science: You match the bug on the water with one from your box that looks most like it. It doesn’t matter what you call it as long as it catches fish.

But Gray Drakes? No one’s ever mentioned Gray Drakes to me. None of which proves a thing, I know, except possibly, I need to pay more attention to the bugs on the water. Or pay more attention to the fishermen I talk to.” — Dennis Smith When you stop to think about it, trout depend on these insects for their very lives and they don’t have the foggiest notion what the darn things are called — they just eat ’em. Dennis Smith is a freelance outdoors writer and photographer whose work appears nationally. He lives in Loveland.

MISS AN ISSUE? Catch up at coloradocountrylife. coop. Click on Outdoors under Living in Colorado.


YOUR STORIES

READERS’ PHOTOS

FUNNY STORIES Our family of six was headed to

the nature center in Pueblo in our Expedition and we were evenly spaced out between the three rows in our car. Our daughter said, “Mom, someone needs to sit on the roof because this is not social distancing!” April Cowley, Pueblo West

I have horses and my grandson,

WINNER: Bill and Laura Di Paulo, Cortez, pose with CCL at Cape Horn. The Albatross sculpture in the background marks the southern tip of South America. Bill and Laura are consumer-members of Empire Electric Association.

who is 3 years old, would come out with me sometimes to help feed them. One day I was telling my grandson that my horse, Little Bit, is a paint horse. He then asked me, “Why did you paint Little Bit?” Jeanne Baxter, Elbert

Out for a drive one day with my

4-year-old granddaughter, I was commenting on the melting snow and the trees starting to bud. “Spring is just around the corner,” I said. Of course, just at that moment, I made a turn down a side road. “This corner?” my granddaughter asked. Anonymous

My daughter was telling my 5-year-

Diane Keeling, La Veta, takes a break from making much-needed health care masks to read Colorado Country Life. Diane is a consumer-member of San Isabel Electric Association.

Ariella Gmitter poses with CCL during some time outdoors. Her mom Natalie is behind the camera. The Gmitters are consumer-members of Mountain View Electric Association, Inc.

old granddaughter, Macy, that Mimi and Papa were celebrating their anniversary. She then asked Macy, “How long do you think they’ve been married?” Macy asked, “Is it in the one hundreds?” We were celebrating our 45th. Debra Wilson, Berthoud Poudre Valley REA consumer-member Pam Bolesta enjoys Colorado Country Life in her hot tub at home in Loveland.

Ralph and Gerry Parker, Cortez, enjoy a trip to Dublin, Ireland, with the magazine. They are consumer-members of Empire Electric Association.

It’s easy to win with Colorado Country Life. Simply take a photo of someone (or a selfie!) with the magazine (even while at home) and email the photo, your name and address to info@coloradocountrylife.org. We’ll draw one photo to win $25 each month. The next deadline is Friday, May 15. Name, address and co-op must accompany photo. See all of the submitted photos on Facebook at facebook.com/COCountryLife.

We pay $15 to each person who submits a funny story that’s printed in the magazine. At the end of the year we will draw one name from those submitting funny stories and that person will receive $200. Send your 2020 stories to Colorado Country Life, 5400 Washington St., Denver, CO 80216 or email funnystories@coloradocountrylife.org. Don’t forget to include your mailing address, so we can send you a check. COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2020

25


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RULES: Colorado Country Life is looking for pet stories explaining what makes your pet special or what amazing things your pet has done. First, second and third place and runners-up published in the magazine will be awarded cash. Stories will be published in the September magazine. Questions may be sent to info@coloradocountrylife.org. 1ST PLACE 2ND PLACE 3RD PLACE $250 $150 $100 PUBLISHED RUNNERS-UP $75 FILL OUT THE FORM AND ENTER TODAY. Go to coloradocountrylife.coop/2020-petstory-contest-entry-form-and-rules.

RULES FOR THE CONTEST ARE AS FOLLOWS:

1. Story must be told in no more than 300 words. 2. Deadline to enter is May 22. Entry must be received in the office by 4:30 p.m. 3. Entries may be typed or handwritten. 4. Photo of the pet must be included with the entry. If the photo is sent digitally, it must be at least 4X5 inches in size at 300 dpi. 5. For digital entries, complete the form at: www.coloradocountrylife.coop/2020pet-story-contest-entry-form-and-rules. 6. Mailed entries must be sent to Pet Story Contest, Colorado Country Life, 5400 Washington St., Denver, CO 80216. 7. All mailed entries must include name, address, phone, email address and local electric co-op with story and photo.

READER POETRY FEATHERS

Feathers — yellowy-green feathers, lacy. That’s what I see now when I squint my eyes at the aspen trees. Asleep all winter, they finally rouse. They have this urgent look, like I feel. “We must get on,” they say; “We must get through with cold. Enough.” No longer brittle, branches dry and gray for months now whisper color — living green. They bend and sway to the kiss of the breeze. I stare. I feel them tease my soul awake. This feather haze changes the outlook of the yard — of my spirit. It can happen. I believe it. Carol H. Ehrlich, Grand Lake Mountain Parks Electric consumer-member

Don’t Quit

Do you want to quit now? Not a chance If you don’t sing, dance If you don’t dance, pray But don’t quit now Be ready and watching Expect the extraordinary The perfect timing is near Closer than you think. Yolanda Wilson, Las Amimas San Isabel Electric Association consumer-member

DO YOU WRITE POETRY? Send us your best work; we’d love to read it. Submission: Submit your poetry via email to: mneeley@coloradocountrylife.org or by mail to: Colorado Country Life 5400 Washington St. Denver, CO 80216 COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2020

27


HOME SAFETY Check Appliances

Tips for Home Safety this Spring Helping you keep home safety top of mind

Inspect and repair outdoor areas Set aside time to evaluate any damage or potential hazards as the weather warms. For example, fallen tree branches and leaves can become trapped in gutters and pose a fire hazard. When working with ladders outside, always look up to make sure you have enough clearance around overhead power lines. If trees on your property are growing close to or around power lines, this can pose a fire hazard, especially in mountain areas where the risk of wildfire is higher. But leave the tree trimming around power lines to the professionals. Contact your local electric cooperative if you need to have your property vegetation evaluated.

Keep outdoor activities safe Teach kids that they should stay away from pad-mounted transformers (the big green boxes in your yard or in your neighborhood). Kites and drones should be flown only in wide open areas and away from overhead power lines. Gardening and landscaping activities also require extra care: Always call 811 to have underground power lines located and marked on your property before digging and planting.

Check batteries and alarms It’s a good idea to review your safety equipment and ensure everything is in good

28

COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2020

working order a few times each year. For example, every type of smoke alarm must be completely replaced every 10 years whether it’s hardwired into your home or operates on a battery. New smoke alarms commonly come with built-in 10-year batteries, but it’s still a good idea to test the units regularly. You can also use this time to double-check the gauge on your fire extinguishers, replace batteries in flashlights, test security systems and replenish first-aid kits.

Learn more online. Get more great home safety tips by visiting coloradocountrylife.coop. Click on Safety Tips.

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s people become more active during the warmer months, keeping home safety top of mind can sometimes go by the wayside. However, when it comes to safety, you can never be too prepared.

Make time to check appliances or schedule an annual maintenance check. Don’t forget to change HVAC filters each month throughout the summer so your air conditioning unit runs efficiently and safely. Inspect appliance power cords for wear and tear and make sure they are not damaged. Maybe it’s time to update appliances to newer models or even make the switch to an electric water heater. Before upgrading any appliances, ask your local electric cooperative for potential rebate programs on Energy Star appliances and other energy efficiency upgrades. With little effort, you can ensure your home’s safety equipment and projects are up to standards. A small investment of time and energy, this will provide some peace of mind while you are spending long summer days at home.


VIRTUAL ACTIVITIES Since some Community Events are being canceled or rescheduled due to COVID-19, Colorado Country Life went on an online scavenger hunt to find ways to be entertained while social distancing. We hope you’ll enjoy our list of VIRTUAL SANITY SAVERS! (We are doing our best to keep the calendar up-to-date at coloradocountrylife.coop/community-events/)

Kids’ Corner

Salida Circus Social Distancing Extravaganza

A team of tutors are creating videos to help kids learn new tricks such as unicycling, juggling, contortion and acrobats. Free, but donations are greatly appreciated. facebook.com/salidacircusoutreachfoundation/

Cosmic Kids

Yoga for the young ones. youtube.com/user/CosmicKidsYoga

Food Network

Cook with your kids and Food Network. foodnetwork.com/recipes/packages/recipes-for-kids/cookingwith-kids

Homeschool Hideout

Offers some suggestions on animal-inspired educational shows on Netflix. homeschoolhideout.com/educational-shows-on-netflix/

Imagination Library “Goodnight with Dolly”

Dolly Parton’s series features the star herself reading children’s books. youtube.com/user/imaginationlibrary

Stay Active

Grace Yoga, Loveland

Take a virtual yoga class on Zoom for $10 per class. lovegraceyoga.com/schedule/

CAMBIO, Colorado Springs

A variety of virtual classes on Zoom. cambioyoga.com/health

Mindstream Yoga, Fort Collins Free online classes. mindstreamyoga.com/online-classes

Caeleb Dressel’s Corentine

The Olympian offers core workout YouTube videos. youtube.com/user/JuneBat

Durango Sports Club, Durango

A variety of live classes while they’re closed. Non-members can get passes for $25 per week. durangosportsclub.com/

Durango Dance, Durango

Dance classes for all ages, for a fee. durangodance.com/

Dance Wonderland, Colorado Springs Virtual group classes and private lessons. dancewonderland.com/

Entertainment

ComedyQuarantine

Live shows on Instagram by comics whose shows were canceled due to COVID-19. instagram.com/comedyquarantine/?hl=en

Devotchka

A unique multi-instrumental and vocal music group has a great variety of YouTube videos. youtube.com/user/Devotchka

National Park Virtual Vacations

Presented by Google Arts & Culture

Kenai Fjords National Park, Alaska

artsandculture.withgoogle.com/en-us/national-parks-service/ kenai-fjords/exit-glacier-tour

Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii

artsandculture.withgoogle.com/en-us/national-parks-service/ hawaii-volcanoes/nahuku-lava-tube-tour

Carlsbad Caverns National Park, New Mexico

artsandculture.withgoogle.com/en-us/national-parks-service/ carlsbad-caverns/natural-entrance-tour

Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah

artsandculture.withgoogle.com/en-us/national-parks-service/ bryce-canyon/sunset-point-tour

Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida

artsandculture.withgoogle.com/en-us/national-parks-service/drytortugas/near-little-africa-tour

Podcasts

Find these podcasts on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, online and/or other podcast platforms.

Colorado Cold Case

Presented by The Colorado Springs Gazette, this podcast is about unsolved Colorado murder cases. Listener discretion advised.

Colorado Matters

Presented by Colorado Public Radio, this podcast focuses on Colorado’s people, issues and ideas.

Colorado Experience

A historical documentary series on the people, places and events that helped form Colorado.

The OutThere Colorado Podcast

Covers a wide range of outdoor recreation topics. Some topics require listener discretion.

Bits and Pieces

Various virtual ways to pique your interests

Pueblo Live Creative Studios, Pueblo

Artists around the community post interactive and inspirational videos to spark at-home creativity. facebook.com/PuebloArts/

Skratch Labs, Boulder

Read articles or watch videos on a wide range of topics, such as recipes; life skills; science; how to wrap a rice cake; gravel bike setup, tips and recommendations; and more. blog.skratchlabs.com/

Nature & Wildlife Discovery Center, Beulah

Support this Colorado outdoor recreation area and subscribe to its YouTube channel where videos await your viewing pleasure. youtube.com/channel/UCKISiRpOkopKVt0IVEiHYsw

The Hairald Hair Hacks from Floyd’s Barbershop

If you’re nervous about cutting your loved ones’ hair while self-isolating, this series will give you lots of hilarious and practical advice to do so. Search “The Hairald Hair Hacks” on YouTube COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2020

29


DISCOVERIES

MAKING MOTHER’S DAY SPECIAL Shower mom with Colorado-made gifts

Savory, Sweet Sentiments

Ma Needs a “Me” Day

Serve Mom breakfast in bed with the mouth-watering products from Durangobased Honeyville. For 100 years the Culhane family business has used saccharine honey to develop delicious honeys, jams, syrups, sauces and more. This breakfast basket ($69.95) has everything you need — pancake and waffle mix, syrups, jam, honey, coffee and more – to get her off to a great morning. There is even a line of body care products to help her wind down at the end of the day. For more information, call 800-676-7690 or visit honeyvillecolorado.com.

Make it a spa day for the matriarch of the household with Vital Living’s handcrafted products. The Salida company centers on wellness in myriad ways from beauty treatments to healing therapies and hygiene. Create Mother’s Day gift baskets that highlight the wishes of the moms in your family. While you’re at it, stock up on supplies your entire household can use such as dish soap, all-natural deodorant and hand sanitizer. For more information, call 719-5392090 or visit vitallivingherbs.com.

Essential Spa Service On a spacious property in the plains of Matheson you can find Tara and Mark Hernandez tending to their brood of goats, chickens, horses, alpacas, miniature donkeys and honeybees. There you will find them handcrafting all-natural soaps, lotions, lip balm and more. Treat mom to a gorgeous gift basket she’ll love while supporting a small, local business that crafts with passion. Find out more at americancountryessentials.com.

30

COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE MAY 2020

Give Mom a Leg Up in Loungewear Mom can show off her Colorado pride while she works out, strolls the outdoors or lounges at home with Mellivora leggings. Crafted in Berthoud, Mellivora leggings look like works of art donning symbolic Colorado landscapes and landmarks such as Red Rocks, Garden of the Gods and Union Station. Leggings are moisture wicking and made of stretch technology that forms to your figure. Cost is $84 per pair. Get $10 off with the discount code “LOCAL.” For more information, call 970-631-9284 or visit mellivoraco.com.

Monthly Contest Enter for your chance to win a belated Mother’s Day basket from American Country Essentials, a Colorado company based in Matheson. Visit our Contests page at coloradocountrylife.coop to learn how to enter.


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CONCERN FOR

COMMUNITY If you’re familiar with electric cooperatives you know this is one of the guiding principles in our not-for-profit business model. It’s part of who we are proud to be. During these challenging times, our cooperative family is here for you. We are responsibly doing our part to help power you through the unknown. There are a million things on your mind, making sure the lights stay on, shouldn’t be one of them. Because whatever the future holds, we’ll power it.

Profile for American MainStreet Publications

Colorado Country Life May 2020 Poudre Valley  

Colorado Country Life May 2020 Poudre Valley

Colorado Country Life May 2020 Poudre Valley  

Colorado Country Life May 2020 Poudre Valley

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