COOK WITH TEAM USA PG 10 / CO-OPS DAUNTING CHALLENGE PG 16 / CREATE A FIRE RESISTANT OASIS PG 18
MOUNTAIN VIEW ELECTRIC ASSOCIATION, INC.
READY FOR THE
OLYMPICS? AN ATHLETE’S PERSPECTIVE
July 2021 THE OFFICIAL PUBLICATION OF THE COLORADO RURAL ELECTRIC ASSOCIATION
“Dog Days of Summer” by Dennis Howard, a consumer-member of San Isabel Electric Association.
5 YOUR CO-OP NEWS
11 NEWS CLIPS
12 COVER STORY AN INSIDER’S VIEW OF THE OLYMPICS
16 ENERGY CONNECTIONS
ADVERTISING Kris Wendtland, Ad Representative firstname.lastname@example.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 2021, Colorado Rural Electric Association. Call for reprint rights.
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COCountryLife pinned: Celebrate the 2021 Olympics by cooking with Team USA. Try the Farmer’s Market Chopped Salad. A tasty and flavorful dish you will love.
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Enter Our Contests Want to learn more about the Olympics? It’s time to read up before the Games begin. Enter for your chance to win a copy of Total Olympics by Jeremy Fuchs. Visit coloradocountrylife.coop and click on the Contests tab to find out how to enter.
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READY FOR THE
OLYMPICS? AN ATHLETE’S PERSPECTIVE
FACEBOOK CHATTER Colorado Rural Electric Association posted: United Power, Inc., in Brighton announced the latest addition to its expanding EV charging network: a new station in Keenesburg just off of the I-76 corridor. This ChargePoint Fast EV Charging Station fills a gap in chargers along I-76.
Cover JULY 2021
Best of 2021 nominations are now open. We picked the categories, now you tell us your favorites in Colorado. You could win one of three $100 gift cards. Visit coloradocountrylife.coop and TIME TO VOTE click on the Contests tab to find BEST OF out how to enter. COLORADO 2021 COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE
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EDITORIAL Denver Corporate Office, 5400 Washington Street, Denver, CO 80216 email@example.com | 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.
COMMUNICATIONS STAFF Mona Neeley, CCC, Publisher/Editor firstname.lastname@example.org Cassi Gloe, CCC, Production Manager/Designer email@example.com Kylee Coleman, Editorial/Admin. Assistant firstname.lastname@example.org
1994 Olympic silver medalist and Mountain Parks Electric board member Liz McIntyre won the silver medal in moguls at the Lillehammer Winter Games. Photo by Jennifer Bauckman.
EACH CO-OP IS UNIQUE All strive to meet members’ needs BY KENT SINGER
wo things were clear when the CEOs of Colorado’s electric co-ops met recently after a long hiatus from in-person meetings: First, they were all eager to get together, catch up and share the latest on what’s happening at their co-ops. Second, each co-op in the state is thinking “outside the box” as it faces a variety of challenges in its service territory. One of the functions of CREA as a trade association is facilitating peer group discussions among the various groups of employees at Colorado’s 22 electric distribution co-ops. We coordinate groups for accountants, attorneys, mechanics, lineworkers, member service representatives, operations managers and others, as well as the co-op general managers and CEOs. At this first CEO meeting in more than a year, the managers met at Holy Cross Energy in Glenwood Springs. In addition to renewing previous connections and welcoming new CEOs to the group, the managers got down to brass tacks discussing the issues and challenges they, their boards and their staff face in providing reliable, affordable and sustainable electricity to over 70% of the landmass of Colorado. To frame the discussion, we asked the co-op CEOs to consider where their co-ops would be in five years. The answers demonstrated not only the incredible diversity that exists among Colorado’s electric co-ops, but also the ingenuity and innovation that co-ops are deploying to respond to an evolving energy landscape. Some CEOs indicated that their members want more options when it comes to the services provided by their electric
co-op. This might be in the form of rates or options for carbon-free power. Other CEOs talked about additional services that co-ops could provide to bring more value to the communities they serve, whether that means additional energy services or an even broader scope of offerings beyond electricity. Among this group are co-ops that have started subsidiaries or initiated other projects to provide broadband service to their consumer-members. Still, other CEOs talked about new technology: how their co-ops are implementing microgrids in remote locations where a local power supply will add resilience; investing in battery storage capacity to provide more flexibility and other value streams; working with their consumermembers on distributed energy systems; and looking at additional renewable generation options to support local communities. There was also a lot of discussion about the challenges that lie ahead. Several eastern plains co-ops are concerned about water, or the lack thereof. With limits proposed on the use of groundwater in the Republican River Basin, farmers and ranchers in eastern Colorado will be affected as will the co-ops depending on the revenue from the electricity operating irrigation wells. Many of those smaller co-ops also have no growth and are seeing their oil and gas customers leave. Yet other co-ops, in other parts of the state, are seeing tremendous growth with business and commercial accounts, adding to residential growth. Every co-op has its specific challenges as it works to meet the needs of its consumermembers who rely on it for their electric energy needs.
All of Colorado’s electric co-ops, regardless of the challenges they face, are working to diversify the power resources that are used to provide electricity to their consumer-members. Colorado law requires all electric utilities to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 80% by 2030, and the co-ops are working to meet those requirements while maintaining today’s levels of reliability and affordability for Colorado’s electric co-op consumer-members. If you read this column regularly, you know I often say, “If you’ve seen one electric co-op, you’ve seen one electric co-op.” This is the opposite of the old saying, “If you’ve seen one (fill in the blank), you’ve seen them all.” This highlights the point that each of Colorado’s electric co-ops is a unique company with its own goals, opportunities and challenges. CREA is excited for the opportunities ahead for Colorado’s electric cooperatives and is ready to assist its member co-ops in overcoming whatever challenges they face as they move into the new energy future. Kent Singer is the executive director of the Colorado Rural Electric Association and offers a statewide perspective on issues affecting electric cooperatives. CREA is the trade association for your electric co-op, the 21 other electric co-ops in Colorado and its power supply co-op.
COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE JULY 2021
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
Focus on Climate Change
Three letters regarding renewables in the April issue indicate a lack of understanding of climate change, renewables and electricity systems, in my opinion. 1. How renewable energy can prevent wildfires, snowstorms, drought and windstorms: Climate change is causing and will cause more extreme weather and wildfires. Renewable energy is a key method of mitigating climate change. 2. Disposal of waste related to solar and wind energy: As with fossil fuel and nuclear energy, decommissioned generating assets should be disposed of properly. Problems associated with solar and wind waste are not on the same scale as coal and nuclear energy waste. 3. Intermittence of renewables: The solution is storage technology and increased interconnection of the grid. Battery storage has become dramatically cheaper in recent years. Increased interconnection of the electricity grid will enable utilities to draw renewable power from places where the sun is shining and the wind is blowing. 4. Natural gas: There is uncertainty surrounding leakage of methane, a potent greenhouse gas. We do have abundant fossil fuels, but we need to leave them in the ground to halt climate change. Frank Stern, Crested Butte Gunnison County Electric consumer-member I enjoyed “The Super Grid” in the April issue. I learned many things including that transmission access is a big concern as we move to more renewable energy sources and that many intelligent professionals are working on solutions. I like the idea of a more interconnected grid delivering lower costs, job creation, lower carbon emissions and better reliability. I appreciate that “thinking big” and thinking long term can overcome the initial monetary outlay and other obstacles. Victoria Jordan, Bellvue Poudre Valley REA consumer-member
An Ode to Cottonwoods
Wow, Dennis Smith. “Gone Yet Not Forgotten Cottonwoods”isamasterpiece(Outdoors, April’21). Your writing continues to be extraordinary. Dr. David Sigafoos, Westminster Sangre de Cristo consumer-member
SEND US YOUR LETTERS Editor Mona Neeley, 5400 Washington St., Denver, CO 80216 or mneeley@ coloradocountrylife.org. Include name and address. Letters may be edited for length.
COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE JULY 2021
FROM THE EDITOR Surrounded by greatness BY MONA NEELEY
he Olympics are coming later this month. Are you excited? I am. I love the pageantry, the stories of athletes’ MONA NEELEY perseverance, the competition, all of it. That’s why I’ve already visited the new U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Museum in Colorado Springs. And what I remember most are the stories of greatness that are shared throughout the museum. They start in the massive open air lobby with the Olympic Hall of Fame display. Among the many listed is the late Rafer Johnson, a two-time Olympian in the decathlon. He was the first Black American to carry the U.S. flag in the opening ceremony in 1960 and he won gold that year with a tight finish in his last event. Then there is Erin Popovich, a three-time Paralympian who won 19 medals, 14 of them gold in swimming. Born with a genetic disorder, achondroplasia, she learned to swim and entered the Sydney 2000 Paralympic Games at age 15. And, of course, there is the 1980 U.S. Hockey Team that brought home the gold after defeating the Russians in what was dubbed the “miracle on ice.” Since I was living in Minnesota in 1980, that team’s story never gets old. The list goes on. So many more inspirational stories … and more coming this month. Mona Neeley is the statewide editor of Colorado Country Life, which is published in coordination with your local electric cooperative. Its goal is to provide information from your local electric co-op to you, its consumer-members.
YOUR CO-OP NEWS
THE COOPERATIVE ADVANTAGE
Operation Round Up®: A Helping Hand in Times of Need BY JIM HERRON
CEO | HERRONJC@MVEA.ORG
or many of us, daily life is starting to get back to normal. It is easy to forget that we were still under COVID-19 occupancy restrictions and a mask mandate going into May. And, while there is much to celebrate as the second part of 2021 brings with it hope and opportunity, for some the lingering financial impact of recently lifted COVID-19 related restrictions remains a challenge. Much like I did last July, when we were starting to reopen for the first time, I want to reach out to our members who are looking for ways to help—who want to lend a helping hand—as well as those members who have experienced financial hardship—and may need a helping hand—and ask you to consider Operation Round Up. Through the generosity of Mountain View Electric Association members who round up their electric bill to the nearest dollar, MVEA is able to give back to the co-op community each year through Operation Round Up. Operation Round Up is a community-focused program, unique to electric co-ops, that assists charitable organizations, communities with special needs, and MVEA co-op members who have suffered from loss, personal disaster, or medical emergencies. Your monthly tax-deductible donation can vary between one penny per month to 99 cents. The extra change, an average of 50 cents a month or $6 a year, is your contribution to
the program (the maximum yearly contribution is just $11.88 a year). This amount may not seem like much, but when multiplied by the more than 26,500 MVEA accounts that are enrolled in the program, the fund can make a little bit of change make a BIG difference. Members may also choose to give a little more. When you enroll through SmartHub, you can give a one-time extra donation to the fund. The additional amount you contribute is completely up to you and will be applied to the fund in the same manner as standard monthly contributions. In addition to helping individual co-op members through times of hardship, the fund plays an important role in assisting charitable organizations. Throughout 2020 and into 2021, these organizations have been integral in helping our communities survive through an era of economic hardship. For instance, Tri-Lakes Cares uses grant funds to support six food insecurity programs and provides financial assistance for housing, car repair and past due bills. And, the Eastern Plains Community Pantry uses grant funds to purchase emergency food boxes, which contain fruits, vegetables, meats, dairy, and grains. These are just two examples, from a long list of organizations, that put Operation Round Up funds to work for the greater good. Operation Round Up has given over $100,000 back to the co-op communities we
serve each year since its inception in 1999. In total, the program has distributed over $2.8 million. The program is administered by a volunteer Operation Round Up Board of Directors, which is an independent board of community leaders, who grant funds according to the program’s policies. MVEA is not involved in the distribution or awarding of funds. Funds collected stay right here in MVEA’s service territory and are used for the benefit of our members. Funds are not used to pay electric bills or for political or religious purposes. The program is always voluntary, and members may opt out of contributing at any time. In closing, I want to personally thank the MVEA members who round-up their bill through Operation Round Up. Your contributions to this charitable fund, during a time when so many people have been impacted by the pandemic, are yet another example of what it means to be co-op strong in times of need. To learn more, apply for funds, or make a tax-deductible donation by opting into the program, please visit www.mvea. coop/round-up. A little change can make a big difference.
The Power of Change Neighbors Helping Neighbors
MVEA’s Operation Round Up® program was formed to assist charitable organizations, communities with special needs, and individuals who have suffered from loss, personal disaster, or medical emergencies. Pennies add up to great things at MVEA. For less than $12 per year, you can round up your monthly electric bill to the nearest dollar, turning your coins into CHANGE to help support your community.
To Learn More, Apply, or Opt-in→ www.mvea.coop/round-up COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE JULY 2021
YOUR CO-OP NEWS
MVEA Telephone Town Hall Annual Meeting of Members
Celebrating 80 Years of Powering Possibilities
ountain View Electric Association’s 80th Annual Meeting of Members was held as an interactive telephone town hall on Thursday, June 3. The meeting format allowed members to participate from the comfort of their homes due to evolving COVID-19 related mandates and the uncertainty surrounding large gatherings in the weeks leading up to the meeting. While the telephone town hall format was a first for MVEA, the intent remained the same as the 79 meetings prior: to elect Board Directors; to vote on important matters brought before the membership; to provide a financial statement of accountability to co-op members; and, to answer member questions about the cooperative. Meeting participants were provided an overview of how to participate in the telephone town hall by a moderator who helped guide the interactive process throughout the meeting. After a brief introduction to the Annual Meeting agenda, and information about the contested
election process, Board President Joe Martin and CEO Jim Herron gave their reports on the state of the cooperative. The reports included highlights of MVEA’s progressive capital credits program, which has resulted in more than $71.5 million in retirements over the course of the co-op’s history (nearly $19 million has been retired in the last five years alone), a stable rate forecast through 2021, future plans to develop a community solar project, MVEA’s continued growth due to new construction, co-op infrastructure improvements through 2020, and a digital meter upgrade update that highlighted the completion of meter installation. While 2020 was anything but normal due to the pandemic, it was also one of the busiest years in MVEA’s history. More than 200 people pre-registered online to participate in the telephone town hall and over 40 questions and comments were submitted by MVEA members during the registration process. Most of the questions fit into five categories: community
solar, MVEA’s grid access charge, renewable energy generation, residential solar/net metering, cybersecurity. The pre-submitted questions were a helpful insight into the current interests of the membership. The topics were included in portions of the given reports as well as the “question and answer” session at the end of the meeting. Visit www.mvea.coop/annual-meeting to access the election results, event program, financial annual report, and the detailed answers to the questions submitted by MVEA members before and during the telephone town hall Annual Meeting of Members.
2021 Annual Meeting Bill Credit & Prize Winners Summer Series Electric Outdoor Power Equipment Winners Electric Power-Washer Sarah Keeker, Colorado Springs Electric Mower+Trimmer Package James Knepshield, Calhan 65” LG Television from Foothills Energy Services, Inc. Dan Roehrich, Colorado Springs EGO Power+ 21” Electric Mower from Tri-State Generation and Transmission Dean Gacita, Colorado Springs $50 Visa Gift Cards from Western United Electric Supply Gavin Anderson, Monument LynnAnn Burnette, Peyton George Cooper, Monument Sean Diasio, Monument Robert Dunlop, Monument VFW Post 5221, Calhan $50 Bill Credits Winners Marilyn Alger, Monument Paul Anderson, Peyton
COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE JULY 2021
Shaun Augustine, Monument Virginia Borgeson, Simla Deborah Branson, Colorado Springs Barbara Burns, Monument John Ceballos, Monument Dinah Cheserem, Peyton Philip Damico, Elbert Angela Earle, Colorado Springs Jeffrey Fergerson, Colorado Springs Joseph Fitos, Rush Martha Fowler, Colorado Springs Carey Gagnon, Monument Pierre Gaudreault, Colorado Springs Ronald Goodson, Peyton Maureen Graham, Colorado Springs Louis Green, Monument Daniel Hambly, Colorado Springs Gail Hill, Colorado Springs Renata Hill, Golden Russell Johnson, Monument Ami Koreh, Monument Fred Lanyon, Monument Rebekah Lawrence, Monument Darin Macdonald, Colorado Springs Tim Mcginnis, Elbert
Sherri Mclean, Colorado Springs Jerry Meszler, Colorado Springs Reed Metzger, Matheson Ronald Meyer, Colorado Springs David Meyer, Colorado Springs Karen Moreau, Colorado Springs David Neyman, Monument James Orban, Colorado Springs Pamela Orcutt, Monument Deborah Perkins, Elbert Mary Pirog, Monument Jeanette Reed, Peyton Barbara Rodda, Colorado Springs Jon Rummell, Elbert Jarret Rush, Monument Brenda Schulz, Peyton Debra Scott, Monument James Spencer, Colorado Springs Tiffany Stockton, Colorado Springs Valerie Swigert, Colorado Springs John Thomas, Colorado Springs Andrea Nelson Trice, Colorado Springs Nancy Zdeb, Colorado Springs
2021 ANNUAL DIRECTOR ELECTION RESULTS
ne aspect of being a member of an electric co-op that is unique is the “one member, one vote” system that provides all members with equal voting rights. The vote of a member with one meter, matters as much a member with 25. The “one member, one vote” system helps ensure an electric co-op acts in the best interest of the entire membership. For the second time since 2013, MVEA had a contested director election. Barry R. Springer (incumbent) and Mary Madison were included as director candidates in District 6, Joseph D. Martin ran uncontested in District 1, and Milton L. Mathis ran uncontested in District 4. This year, MVEA worked with Survey & Ballot Systems, a reputable election organization and verification service used by electric cooperatives across the country, to mail and tabulate election ballots. On May 3, more than 51,300 election ballot packets were mailed to MVEA members. Members with emails on file were sent notifications; Facebook and Twitter posts were used to actively communicate with members; and important messages were included on the April and May bills. Voter participation was encouraged through the promotion of fifty $50 ($2,500 total) bill credits and vendor door prizes with winners randomly selected from completed ballots and registered telephone town hall participants (see page 6 for prize winners). Between May 3 and June 2, MVEA received more than 5,600 returned ballots.
District 1: Uncontested
Local. Trusted. Serving You. BOARD OF DIRECTORS Joseph D. Martin, District 1 President Barry R. Springer, District 6 Vice President Milton L. Mathis, District 4 Secretary-Treasurer Errol Hertneky, District 3 Assistant Secretary Rick L. Gordon, District 2, Director Kevin L. Paddock, District 5, Director Jim Riggins, District 7, Director
Credit Card Pay-By-Phone (877) 999-3415
Falcon Office 11140 E. Woodmen Road Falcon, CO 80831
District 4: Uncontested Milton L. Mathis (Incumbent)
A Member-Owned Cooperative
Telephone Numbers Toll-Free: (800) 388-9881 (719) 495-2283
2021 Director Election Results Joseph D. Martin (Incumbent)
YOUR CO-OP NEWS
District 6: Contested Barry R. Springer (Incumbent)
Limon Office 1655 5th Street • P.O. Box 1600 Limon, CO 80828
To view the Director Election Results online, visit www.mvea.coop/annual-meeting. Thank you to the members who voted in the election and watched the event on June 3. Active participation by the membership is integral to the co-op’s success in meeting the needs of a growing electric co-op in a changing energy landscape.
Monument Office 15706 Jackson Creek Parkway, Suite 100 Monument, CO 80132 Office Hours Monday - Thursday • 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. COVID-19 + MVEA Service Updates www.mvea.coop/covid-19-response
Visit our website: www.mvea.coop
Stay Connected: Like. Follow. Share. www.facebook.com/MVEAInc Search for: Mountain View Electric Assn. Inc. www.twitter.com/MVEAInc Joseph D. Martin District 1 President
Barry R. Springer District 6 Vice President
Milton L. Mathis District 4 Secretary/Treasurer
Search for: Mountain View Electric Association, Inc. This Association is an equal opportunity provider and employer.
Mark your calendars! MVEA’s 81st Annual Meeting of Members will be held June 2, 2022, in Limon. COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE JULY 2021
YOUR CO-OP NEWS
Operation Round Up® Annual Report
hen we all work together, great things happen. On average, 50% of Mountain View Electric Association’s membership participates in Operation Round Up. Since it was incorporated in 1999 and started collecting funds in 2000, the MVEA Operation Round Up fund has collected more than $3.3 million as of December 31, 2020. Through the generosity of MVEA’s members who choose to participate in the program, over $100,000 is invested back into the co-op community every year. Please see page 7 for additional information about the Operation Round Up program. The figures shown are as of December 31, 2020, and represent the fiscal years of 2020 and 2019 as well as the history of the fund since incorporation in 1999 through 2020. Thank you to all of MVEA’s members who have opted in to support their communities and those in need through Operation Round Up. If you, or someone you know, needs a helping hand through challenging times, visit www.mvea.coop/round-up for grant qualifications and to apply for funds.
History of the Fund (through 12/31/20)
Starting balance Amount collected
History of the Fund (through 12/31/19)
Awarded to organizations
Awarded to individuals
Operating expenses Ending balance
Proud sponsor of the El Paso County Fair July 10 • MVEA Lights Up the Night Fireworks July 13 • Family Day Sponsor
The Power of CHANGE = $2.8 Million Back to Your Electric Co-op Community. MVEA’s Quarterly “Switch & Save” $300 Account Credit Winner Spotlight: The Melnikow’s When Nikolai and Teresa Melnikow found out they were the winners of MVEA’s most recent quarterly “Switch & Save” $300 account credit drawing, they were pretty excited. But, they were not as excited as their dog Zia, who has been an honorary MVEA member since she was adopted six years ago. “I don't know what money is, but I am happy my humans won a credit if it means they can spend more money on treats and toys for me! My mom likes auto-pay so then she doesn't have to worry about scheduling payments. More time for her to pet me,” shared Zia.
Photo Credit: Kayla Garchar
THE COOPERATIVE Advantage
Local | Trusted | Serving You
The 116th Annual El Paso County Fair is a welcome opportunity to celebrate the simple joys of tradition: the smell of funnel cakes and corn dogs; the bright lights of the carnival rides; and, the excitement of the grandstand events! MVEA is proud to sponsor an annual event with roots that run deep in our co-op community. A Member-Owned Cooperative
www.mvea.coop • (800) 388-9881
Stay Connected: Like. Follow. Share.
COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE JULY 2021
Go paperless through SmartHub, or bank account autopay, and save up to $1 per month! Plus, all participating “Switch & Save” accounts are automatically entered into a quarterly drawing for a $300 account credit! Learn more at: www.mvea.coop/payment-options
Y L N O • H T N O M • E N O OR WINDOW & DO
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Call for your FREE Window & Door Diagnosis TopWindowsColorado.com Offer not available in all areas. Discount applied by retailer representative at time of contract execution and applies to purchase of 3 or more windows and/or entry or patio doors. 3% cash discount for payment in full by cash or check applied at time of sale. Cannot be combined with other offers. Initial contact for a free Window and Door Diagnosis must be made and documented on or before 7/31/21, with the appointment then occurring no more than 10 days after the initial contact. No payments and deferred interest for 12 months available to well qualified buyers on approved credit only. Not all customers may qualify. No Finance Charges will be assessed if promo balance is paid in full in 12 months. Renewal by Andersen retailers are independently owned and operated retailers, and are neither brokers nor lenders. Any finance terms advertised are estimates only, and all financing is provided by third-party lenders unaffiliated with Renewal by Andersen retailers, under terms and conditions arranged directly between the customer and such lender. Window Warmth, LLC d/b/a Renewal by Andersen of Colorado. “Renewal by Andersen” and all other marks where denoted are marks of Andersen Corporation. ©2021 Andersen Corporation. All rights reserved. ©2021 Lead Surge LLC. All rights reserved. All sales, marketing and installation of windows is conducted by Renewal by Andersen of Colorado, an independently owned and operated affiliate operating in CO and NM.
CHOW FOR CHAMPS Fix fantastic fare and become top chef in your kitchen BY AMY HIGGINS
WIN A COPY
| RECIPES@COLOR ADOCOUNTRYLIFE.ORG
Time to start cooking with Team USA
fter a year of postponement, we can finally taste the excitement of the Tokyo Summer Olympics. The level of talent these athletes demonstrate never ceases to amaze and you can’t help but wonder how they fuel their fire. Each sport requires specialized training and, to maintain momentum, a particular diet. Team USA gets culinary with Olympians and Paralympians with its “Cooking with Team USA” program and shares recipes for everyone to consume, and we gave it a shot. So, pull out your kitchen equipment and exercise your cooking talents with this fortifying dish.
Brick Chicken with Red Chimichurri Sauce
into both the skin and the meat. Cover with plastic and place in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours, or as long as overnight.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Heat canola oil in a large cast iron or heavy bottomed skillet over medium heat. Add chicken, skin side down. Place another skillet on top of the chicken and place a brick or teakettle filled with water on top to weigh down the chicken. Cook for 5 minutes until skin is browned. Flip the chicken, weigh it down again with the other skillet and place in oven. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until a thermometer inserted in thigh registers 165 degrees. Remove to platter and let rest for 5 minutes. Serve with chimichurri sauce.
2 tablespoons smoked paprika 1 teaspoon garlic powder 1 teaspoon onion powder 1/2 teaspoon mustard powder 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander 1/8 teaspoon powder cayenne pepper 1/2 teaspoon brown sugar 1/2 split chicken 3 tablespoons canola oil Chimichurri Sauce: 1 roasted red bell pepper 1 clove garlic, chopped 1 shallot, chopped 1 cup fresh parsley Juice of 1 lemon 6 sun-dried tomatoes, chopped 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
SCRAPING THE SURFACE When food sticks to the bottom of your cast iron skillet, don’t use soap or harsh abrasive sponges to clean it. Instead, fill the skillet with water and place in on your stovetop to boil for about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and take off the unwanted food by gently using a pan scraper. Finish up by rubbing the skillet with cooking oil.
COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE JULY 2021
Enter our July contest for your chance to win a copy of Total Olympics. Visit coloradocountrylife. coop and click on the Contests tab to find out how to enter.
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
For Chimichurri Sauce: Combine all chimichurri ingredients in a blender. Pulse until blended. (The mixture should be pureed but slightly chunky rather than entirely smooth.) Taste and add salt and pepper as desired. Serve with chicken. teamusa.org/Cooking-With-Team-USA/Brian-Boitano/ Brick-Chicken-with-Red-Chimichurri-Sauce Recipe from the Cooking with Team USA series, used with permission from the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee.
1/3 cup olive oil Salt and pepper, to taste
For Chicken: Combine all the spices and sugar in a small bowl and stir together with a fork until completely blended. Place the chicken on a plate and generously season both sides with the spice mixture. Rub the mixture
Summertime Salmon Pasta A must-try recipe, it is a great, healthy meal option for those hot summer days. Get this recipe and others at coloradocountrylife.coop.
OVER ‹‹‹‹ MOVE FOR CO-OP CREWS
Every year, workers along the sides of roads and highways are injured or killed when a car or truck crashes into the crew’s site, even when that site is marked with bright orange cones and the trucks’ lights are flashing. Drivers can change those statistics.
Slow down and move over — it’s the law in Colorado.
Co-ops Contribute to Defense of Country’s Energy Supply The electric cooperatives’ Essence 2.0 cybersecurity tool was chosen as part of President Joe Biden’s “100 Days” Initiative. The U.S. Department of Energy is focusing on cybersecurity tools as cyberattacks on the utility infrastructure in the United States increase. After evaluating 18 different cybersecurity tools currently available in the market, the DOE chose Essence as one of two options to be offered to utilities in a new program working to improve security for the country’s electric industry in 100 days. Essence 2.0 was developed by the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, the trade association for the country’s 900 electric co-ops, to accelerate the detection of malicious cyberthreats on utility systems from months to seconds. This analytic tool instantly provides key indicators to utility experts so they can defend their systems against emerging threats and thus thwart the attacks.
Colorado’s statutes require a driver coming up on public utility vehicles parked by the side of the road to reduce and maintain a safe speed. A safe speed is defined as 25 miles per hour in an area with a posted speed limit of 45 mph or less and at least 20 mph less than the posted speed in areas where the speed limit is over 45 mph. These same rules apply for other emergency vehicles, tow trucks and police and highway patrol vehicles. Other states have similar laws, as protecting electric co-op crews and other emergency and highway personnel is always a priority. So, as you travel this summer, when you see the orange cones and flashing lights, slow down and move over when you can. That will help lower the statistics and make it a better summer for everyone.
Member Participation Makes Co-ops Work If you buy electricity from a local electric cooperative, you are not just a consumer, but a member of that co-op. Membership is one of the seven core co-op principles of a cooperative with the third principle being “members’ economic participation.” What this means is that co-op consumers contribute equitably to, and democratically control, the capital of their co-op. Some of the capital is the common property of the co-op’s physical plant, and surpluses can be used to improve that plant (infrastructure). Surpluses, when it is economically feasible, may also be returned to consumer-members in proportion to their transactions with the co-op.
Find all seven principles at crea.coop/our-mission/ 7-co-op-principles.
COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE JULY 2021
LIZ MCINTYRE THREE-TIME U.S. OLYMPIAN
AN INSIDER’S VIEW OF THE OLYMPICS RELIVING THE EXCITEMENT BY EUGENE BUCHANAN
ranby, Colorado’s Liz McIntyre, 55, is a board member for Mountain Parks Electric, one of CREA’s member co-ops. But she’s better known for her mogul skiing than her role at Mountain Parks. A former coach for the U.S. Ski Team and inductee into the 2008 U.S. Ski & Snowboard Hall of Fame, McIntyre is a three-time Olympian who won the silver medal in moguls at the 1994 Lillehammer Winter Games. Electrifying spectators on the slopes — just like she does homes through Mountain Parks — she gave us an insider’s view of the upcoming Tokyo Games. Here, she sheds her own light on what it means to be an Olympian, from attending the opening ceremonies and socializing in the athlete
COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE JULY 2021
cafeteria to the accommodations and being an athlete in the starting gate on the world’s biggest stage.
ON THE PANDEMIC POSTPONEMENT That’s a huge one. You’re so focused on trying to peak at the right time and so excited you made the team and are headed to the Olympics. Then all of a sudden, screech! Stop! Time out for a pandemic! Training routines and practices are shut down; water douses that whole campfire of excitement. And a lot of athletes likely just recovered from qualifying and then had to put it on pause. That, and the uncertainty of if the Olympics will even happen, would be difficult to manage. Then add the complications of team sports still trying to practice and
even something as simple as going to the gym. Your whole training regimen is upended. For some athletes, COVID-19 forced changes to their housing, jobs and school, which complicated things even further. The potential to get the virus and the effect it could have on your health and athletic career is also a concern. The impact the pandemic has had on friends and family adds another layer of complexity. I can’t imagine what the Tokyobound athletes have gone through. Still, as trite as it sounds, adaptability, perseverance and focus are the hallmarks of all great athletes. There will be some spectacular performances in Tokyo.
ON THE COMMITMENT IT TAKES Most people know it’s super hard to train for the Olympics and what kind of dedication it takes. But you also end up not attending things like family reunions, graduations, weddings and other events — things people on a less stringent training schedule would never skip. You’re away from home all the time. The more years you do it, the more of these life events you miss. And throughout it all, your family, friends and mentors are encouraging you and supporting you in multiple ways. It’s bigger than your dream. And then, in a year like this, you see the whole thing get canceled and think, “Oh, I have to wait another four years?” So it’s a huge commitment socially as well to be an Olympian.
COVER STORY ON ANTICIPATION For a first-time Olympian, the months leading up to the Games can’t go by fast enough. The excitement is palpable. You’ve worked so hard and sacrificed all sorts of normal activities to pursue a dream. And now it is finally happening. For a veteran, the hard years of the four-year cycle are nearly over, and now it’s time to put it all on the line again. This is what you do, what you live for. But for both, you trained four years for this and you’re ready, so bring it. Above all, you’re looking forward to the Olympic competition day — as much or more than the whole Olympic experience.
ON THE OPENING CEREMONIES They really cement the Olympic moment. Everyone is so excited, jumping up and down and giving each other high fives. You’re all sitting in the same bleachers and you realize that this is it, this is the Olympics. It’s a pretty momentous occasion. Here’s what it was like at my first Olympics in France. That day we put on our opening ceremonies uniform as instructed, boarded a bus and drove the impossibly curvy road down the mountain to Albertville, where we exited into the warm valley air hinting of spring. We joined a growing mass of athletes staging for the ceremonies. Countries were delineated by their waving flags and colorful uniforms. It seemed like we waited forever to march into that stadium, but once we started there was no going back. The drab
scaffolding gave way to cheering rows of spectators stretching up to the sky, music playing and rows of dignitaries. The U.S. team waved wildly at Vice President Dan Quayle. We wound around the stadium, following our flag bearer. My parents were up there somewhere. It was pre social media, so we shared the experience with each other, drinking in the euphoria, excitement and anticipation. We jumped up and down, smiled, yelled, waved our hands in the air and danced. Then we settled into our seats. As the day faded into soft magic light, we watched a spectacular array of French artists and acrobats dance and fly around the stadium. After a few long speeches, they lit the torch just as night fell. Then we boarded the bus and slept our way back up the hill. When we arrived in Tignes, the torch was burning brightly on the side of the mountain. Let the games begin!
ON THE GAMES’ SOCIAL SIDE You’re taking in everything, but you’re pretty focused on the competition. It’s cool to see all the other athletes from the other disciplines, but you’re aware this isn’t social time; it’s the Olympics. But you do have a chance to go watch other events and cheer for Team USA. I liked going to women’s hockey games, figure skating, speed skating, ski jumping, bobsled and luge. Some athletes thrive in a more social setting like that, and others don’t. Norway, August 21, 2014 - The ski jump slope Lysgårdsbakken opened in 1993 specifically for the XVII Olympic Winter Games in 1994.
ON DINING Every venue is different. In France we were sort of off by ourselves, but Lillehammer had a big dining hall, which was a hub of activity. It was buffet-style with a bunch of different stations, so the food was really good with a lot of choices. Athletes cycled through constantly and there was an undercurrent of excitement and a feeling of commonality and respect. Usually, you sit with your teammates or other athletes you know from other events. I knew lugers from Dartmouth, as well as some of the Nordic and biathlon competitors. But you let Dan Jansen and Bonnie Blair have their space; I wasn’t the type to sit down right next to them. But I did say hi to Herschel Walker, who was pushing the bobsled. One afternoon the dining hall erupted in applause when a luge athlete arrived from Sarajevo, which hosted the Olympics 12 years before but had since descended into bloody sectarian violence. Somehow he made his way out of a civil war to compete in Lillehammer. But your focus and mood depended on if you or the people you were with had competed yet or not.
ON THE ACCOMMODATIONS In France, our accommodations were typical of what you’d get on a ski holiday; we weren’t at the village. But in Lillehammer we stayed in athlete housing in the main Olympic Village. And a village it was, with hundreds of two-story houses, painted in Norwegian shades of yellow or red, organized along narrow snowy paths leading to the main athlete center. The U.S. biathlon team shared the upstairs of the house where I stayed and a men’s hockey team was downstairs. They had practice at odd hours and a coach who yelled. We could hear everything. I shared a room with Nikki Stone, an aerialist. There were all sorts of last-minute changes and we only found out who our roommates were a week earlier. The rooms were pretty small, but adequate. We created a little privacy by moving our wardrobes COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE JULY 2021
Liz McIntyre competes at the XVII Olympic Winter Games in 1994.
together in the middle. Eight of us shared the same bathroom, which worked ok, but involved some juggling on competition mornings. In Nagano, the ski team rented a house closer to the venue and we slept on Japanese tatami mats. It will be interesting to see how organizers, teams and athletes address housing in the time of COVID-19.
I cherish as much as going across the finish line. Just knowing that I was ready. All that you’ve done to get here and then, bam! You’re about to go. There’s a pause before it all begins, which can seem like it lasts a long time even though it’s just a second long. It’s the same for everyone, whether you’re standing atop the swimming block or waiting for the starting gun in track.
ON THE MORNING OF
ON ONCE IT’S ALL OVER
I’d been working with a sports psychologist for three years, so I had a good plan mapped out. My morning routine was to wake up, take a shower, eat breakfast (potatoes, and I always like grapefruit) and then hit the training course early. I was more nervous the day of my qualifying event than on the finals; if you don’t qualify, you don’t go to the dance. Everyone has their own timing and routine for preparing for their event. Some athletes have elaborate rituals; me, not so much. I always tried to get the feel of some good turns as I came into the starting gate and I found a quiet place I could get myself ready to go. I listened to music that would put me in the right state of mind. For Lillehammer it was Blue Rodeo, the Gin Blossoms and Melissa Etheridge. Back then it came from a huge Walkman; I remember a colossal argument one time on the bus about what music should be playing to appease 20 athletes. But sometimes the team had an anthem; in Albertville it was George Michael. Nowadays, everyone has their own device and playlist. Many even listen to it during their training.
It depends on how you did. I was a little disappointed after my first Olympics, but I knew what I had to do and get better at. In Lillehammer, I put those skills to work and skied a great run. When you have your best performance during an Olympics it’s an exhilarating feeling. But you don’t have much time to reflect; you’re whisked off for drug testing, media events and the medal ceremony. So, I was pumped, but exhausted; it had been a long day. It didn’t really sink in until I got home to Colorado. And it was different because I knew I was still competing. Nagano was my last time as a competitor, so it was more nostalgic. I didn’t adapt to the changing course conditions between training and the finals. That’s when you wish you had a chance to do it all over again; you want to rewind the tape and start all over. Everything you had worked so hard for is all over in 30 seconds. It can be a bit crushing after all the work you put in, but you learn about the journey, getting ready and disappointment and moving on. You win some and you lose some.
ON GETTING READY TO DO YOUR BEST The moment that stands out most for me is the one right before my run. At the starting gate in Lillehammer, I stared out at a lake in the distance. I could see fog coming off of it. A crowd lined each side of the course, and a huge stadium was at the bottom. There was a ton of noise but I was just so at peace and ready. It was a great feeling and a moment
COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE JULY 2021
ON THE TOKYO GAMES AND STAYING SAFE Tokyo 2020 will be a different Olympics. It will see athletes arriving from a world weary of the pandemic, and athletes who have been affected disproportionately and have had to question what is really important to them. Will the excitement, nervousness and anticipation be more muted or will a return to sport bring a joy not felt for the longest year ever? And staying safe will be important. That whole aspect is unknown. How do you keep your team safe in a little bubble in a place like the Olympics? Even at past Olympics, by the second week people start catching colds that have come from around the world. Who knows what it will be like this year? Maybe because people are so careful no one will get anything. Still, you’re in pretty tight quarters. It’s going to be a much different Olympics. Eugene Buchanan, a freelance writer who makes his home in Yampa Valley Electric’s territory, has written about outdoor sports for more than 25 years.
LEARN MORE ONLINE
WANT TO GET A TASTE OF THE GAMES AHEAD OF TOKYO? The U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Museum is a one-of-a-kind tribute to the Olympic and Paralympic movements. Visit coloradocountrylife.coop to read about our visit to this new Colorado Springs attraction.
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Throughout the ages, there have been many important advances in mobility. Canes, walkers, rollators, and scooters were created to help people with mobility issues get around and retain their independence. Lately, however, there haven’t been any new improvements to these existing products or developments in this field. Until now. Recently, an innovative design engineer who’s developed one of the world’s most popular products created a completely new breakthrough... a personal electric vehicle. It’s called the Zinger, and there is nothing out there quite like it.
In Support of Clean Energy Electric co-ops seek same incentives as for-profit utilities
BY ERIN KELLY
lectric cooperatives are not-for-profit entities and therefore do not pay federal income taxes. Usually that is a good thing. It means co-op electric rates are set to only cover co-op costs. There is no incentive to charge more than is needed; any profit (known as a margin in the co-op business model) is returned to consumers as credits. But when it comes to government incentives to transition to newer, cleaner fuel sources, not paying taxes is a problem. Other utilities have long received federal tax breaks for providing power from solar, wind and other renewable energy sources. Co-ops cannot tap into those programs because they are exempt from those taxes. The National Rural Electric Cooperative Association is working to change that. It is urging congressional leaders to provide electric co-ops with direct payments to develop clean energy projects. These would provide incentives comparable to the tax breaks granted to investor-owned utilities such as Xcel Energy and Black Hills Energy. In a letter to top congressional leaders, NRECA, the American Public Power Association and the Large Public Power Council asked for direct payments to member-owned and community-owned utilities to help employ technologies such as
COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE JULY 2021
battery storage, carbon capture and electric vehicle charging networks. “Allowing public power utilities and rural electric cooperatives to receive these tax credits in the form of direct payments for building clean energy infrastructure would ensure that all utilities serving all Americans would have equal access to these federal resources,” said the May 14 letter, which was signed by NRECA CEO Jim Matheson, APPA President/CEO Joy Ditto and LPPC President John Di Stasio. “The direct payments would be used to help offset project costs — increasing the incentive for further investments — and would enable public power utilities and electric cooperatives to own these facilities directly. It would also mean more local projects, with local jobs, under local control,” the letter stated. The issue is one of NRECA’s top legislative priorities for this session of Congress. The letter points out that co-ops and community-owned electric utilities together serve nearly 30% of all retail electric customers. “The president and Congress have ambitious climate goals that cannot be met by leaving nearly 30% of the nation’s electric utility customers without access
“The direct payments would be used to help offset project costs — increasing the incentive for further investments — and would enable public power utilities and electric cooperatives to own these facilities directly. It would also mean more local projects, with local jobs, under local control.” NRECA CEO Jim Matheson, APPA President/CEO Joy Ditto and LPPC President John Di Stasio to incentives and support,” the three association leaders wrote. President Joe Biden has set a goal of eliminating carbon dioxide emissions from the power sector by 2030 to help slow climate change. Matheson and the other association leaders called that “a daunting challenge” with a hefty price tag that will be borne in part by co-op consumer-members and public power customers. “As such, we cannot afford inefficient or ineffective policies,” they wrote. Erin Kelly is a staff writer at the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association.
Scientists Target New Digestive Aid Pill for Anti-Aging Research Surprisingly, the secret to slow the aging process may reside in a new digestive aid treatment; studies find the pill to help protect users from fatigue, cardiovascular issues, and serious conditions that accompany premature aging. Seattle, WA – A published study on a leading natural digestive aid shows that its key ingredient improves digestive health while supporting healthy inflammation response that slows down signs of premature aging in men and women. And, if consumer sales are any indication of a product’s effectiveness, this ‘GI-tonic turned anti-aging phenomenon’ is nothing short of a miracle. Sold under the brand name AloeCure®, its ingredient was already backed by research showing its ability to neutralize acid levels and improve gastric discomfort. But soon doctors started reporting some incredible results... “With AloeCure, my patients started reporting, better sleep, more energy, stronger immune systems... even less stress and better skin, hair, and nails” explains Dr. Liza Leal; a leading integrative health specialist and company spokesperson. AloeCure contains an active ingredient that helps improve digestion by acting as a natural digestive aid that improves the pH balance of your stomach. Scientists now believe that having optimal acid levels could be a major contributing factor to a healthy immune system. The daily allowance of AloeCure has shown to optimize the acid levels needed to manage healthy immune function which is why AloeCure is so effective. It relieves other stressful issues related to GI health like discomfort, excess gas and bloating, and bathroom stress. Now, backed with new scientific studies, AloeCure is being doctor recommended to help improve digestive function, help build better bones, support healthy joint function, and even help reduce the appearance of wrinkles - helping patients look and feel decades younger. FIX YOUR GUT & SUPPORT HEALTHY INFLAMMATION Since hitting the market, sales for AloeCure have taken off and there are some very good reasons why. To start, the clinical studies have been impressive. Virtually all participants taking it reported stunning improvement in digestive symptoms including gastric discomfort. Users can also experience higher energy levels and endurance, less discomfort and better sleep, healthier looking skin, hair, and nails. An unhealthy gut can wreak havoc on the human body. Doctors say this is why AloeCure
works on so many aspects of your health. AloeCure’s active ingredient is made from the famous polysaccharide compound found in Aloe Vera. It is both safe and healthy. There are also no known side effects. Scientists believe that it helps improve digestive health by acting as a natural digestive aid that improves the pH balance of your stomach and helps the immune system maintain healthy functions. Research has shown that acid imbalance contributes to premature aging and is why AloeCure seems to be so effective. EXCITING RESULTS FROM PATIENTS To date millions of bottles of AloeCure have been sold, and the community seeking non-pharma therapy for their GI health continues to grow. According to Dr. Leal, her patients are absolutely thrilled with their results and are often shocked by how fast it works. “For the first time in years, they are free from concerns about their digestion and almost every other aspect of their health,” says Dr. Leal, “and I recommend it to everyone who wants to improve GI health before considering drugs, surgery, or OTC medications.” “All the problems with my stomach are gone. Completely gone. I can say AloeCure is a miracle. It’s a miracle.” Another user turned spokesperson said, “I started to notice a difference because I was sleeping through the night and that was great. AloeCure does work for me. It’s made a huge difference.” With so much positive feedback, it’s easy to see why the community of believers is growing and sales for the new pill are soaring. THE SCIENCE BEHIND ALOECURE AloeCure is a gastric and digestive tonic. The pill is small. Easy to swallow. There are no harmful side effects and it does not require a prescription. The active ingredient is a rare Aloe Vera component known as acemannan. Millions spent in developing a proprietary process for extracting acemannan resulted in the highest quality, most bio-available levels of acemannan known to exist, and it’s made from organic aloe. According to Dr. Leal and leading experts, improving the pH balance of your stomach and restoring gut health is the key to revitalizing your entire body. When your digestive system isn’t healthy, it causes unwanted stress on your immune system and that might lead to unhealthy in-
flammation. The recommended daily allowance of AloeCure has been proven to support digestive health, manage healthy immune function, and promote healthy inflammation response without side effects or drugs. This would explain why so many users are experiencing impressive results so quickly. REVITALIZE YOUR ENTIRE BODY With daily use, AloeCure helps users look and feel decades younger and defend against premature aging that can make life hard. By helping acid levels stay optimal and promoting gut health, AloeCure’s ingredient supports joint health…helps skin appear smooth…maintains healthy cholesterol and oxidative stress…improves sleep and associated weight loss....and supports brain function by way of gut biome...without side effects or expense. Readers can now support their energy, vitality, and youth regardless of age.
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THESE STATEMENTS HAVE NOT BEEN EVALUATED BY THE FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION. THIS PRODUCT IS NOT INTENDED TO DIAGNOSE, TREAT, CURE, OR PREVENT ANY DISEASE. ALL DOCTORS MENTIONED ARE REMUNERATED FOR THEIR SERVICES. ALL CLINICAL STUDIES ON ALOECURE’S ACTIVE INGREDIENT WERE INDEPENDENTLY CONDUCTED AND WERE NOT SPONSORED BY THE AMERICAN GLOBAL HEALTH GROUP. COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE JULY 2021
Set Your Scene for Safety Create an alluring, fire-resistant landscape BY VICKI SPENCER
MASTER GARDENER | GARDENING@COLOR ADOCOUNTRYLIFE .ORG
ast year Colorado had an historic wildfire season with fires burning into October and beyond — a time when our thoughts typically turn to snow. Not only has the fire season lengthened, but the average burned area has also tripled over the past few decades. Unfortunately, the threat of wildfires will continue to grow as more people are drawn to previously uninhabited areas. To protect your family and community, it’s important to know how to create defensible space. This involves planning and designing areas around your home to serve as barriers that prevent fires from spreading and to allow access for firefighters. Defensible space doesn’t mean your yard must be completely devoid of vegetation. It simply means being strategic about your landscape. One goal in creating defensible space is to add “hardscapes,” which break up the continuity of growth around your yard and establish buffers between buildings and vegetation. You can add hardscape by placing stone pathways close to your house and weaving them throughout your lawn and gardens. Meandering pathways don’t just create distance between flammable areas, they add interesting aesthetics.
COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE JULY 2021
Another goal involves placement and selection of vegetation that avoid fueling fires. Examine areas bordering your buildings. Are flammable materials and vegetation at least 3 to 5 feet away? If your border garden is mulched with wood chips, replace this mulch with flame-resistant landscape materials, such as gravel and stone. If bushes are right next to the house, move them a foot or two farther away. Better yet, reduce fuel by replacing bushes altogether with less flammable ground cover. Many ground covers do well in Colorado. Sedum is an excellent border plant with its variety of colors and blooming seasons. Ice plant (Delosperma) is also a hardy perennial with daisy-like flowers that add splashes of color to drier garden areas. You can prevent flame transfer by keeping plant clusters and trees horizontally and vertically spaced from one another. Plant trees a safe distance from buildings and keep branches trimmed a minimum of 3 feet away. Thinking vertically, don’t forget to trim bottom branches 6 to 10 feet above the ground. If you are on a slope, these distances may need to be increased since fire travels faster up slopes.
When selecting trees, choose ones with smooth bark and low resin and sap content that shed minimal amounts of leaves and waste. Avoid pines, which create highly flammable dry litter when needles drop and collect below. When selecting fire-resistant plants, many recommend native species. This is because natives have adapted to survive the extreme heat of Colorado’s wildfires. For example, buffalo grass is among the first plants to regenerate after a fire and its early emergence helps reduce erosion. If you have a lawn, keep it mowed and irrigated, paying heed to the wise use of water. These measures can lessen the threat of fire damage to your property. For more information about defensible space, visit nfpa.org and click on Firewise USA®. 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.
The Birds and the Trees
Get the Muck
New books guide readers in North America’s outdoors BY DENNIS SMITH
| OUTDOORS@COLOR ADOCOUNTRYLIFE .ORG
n April 6 of this year, Penguin Random House released the highly anticipated new National Audubon Society Birds of North America and National Audubon Society Trees of North America (published by Alfred A. Knopf). I was lucky enough to get early copies of both books from the kind folks in their promotional department in March and I was definitely impressed. No doubt, most backyard nature lovers and professional naturalists alike are familiar with Audubon’s iconic line of field guides. After all, their famous “turtleback” series with its leather-like textured covers and conveniently packable size has been around since the 1970s and sold more than 18 million copies in 29 different titles covering everything from birds, mammals, trees and wildflowers to mushrooms, rocks, fish, insects and, well, just about anything that occurs in the natural world. Both the new bird and tree guidebooks, though, reflect an almost radical departure from Audubon’s classic field guide format with a whole new look, size and design. And the new format is more than merely cosmetic: Where the prior guides had their photographic identification plates arranged in a separate section from the corresponding descriptive text, the newer guides incorporated photo presentation, taxonomic data, habitat info and scientific field notes, as well as the current science and, perhaps most importantly, the conservation status of birds in a single, user-friendly location. Birds covers more than 800 species with over 3,500 razor-sharp, full-color photos of birds in their natural habitat — often with multiple images of each bird. According to the press release, it also includes essays by leading scholars in each field on holistic insights into the world of birds, range maps reflecting the impact of climate change, detailed physical descriptions and information on voice, nesting habits and similar species. The new Birds of North America is bigger and nearly three times as heavy as its predecessor. It no longer qualifies as a field guide in the strictest sense of the word, but it is an outstanding scientific reference tool in its own right. The change is carried over into Trees of North America as well: 540 species, 2,500 full color plates with images of bark, fruit, flowers, leaves, seasonal color changes and tons of new info on conservation status. As with Birds of North America, Trees also includes an expanded glossary, index, ribbon marker and new essays by leading scholars. Where the older series of guidebooks were printed on lightweight, tissue-thin, parchment-like paper, the new editions are printed on glossy, heavy-weight stock. To say they are cosmetically beautiful would be an understatement, but the real beauty lies in the improved ease of use and new informative essays by leading scientists, scholars and taxonomic and field experts. New Audubon guidebooks in this series on wildflowers and mushrooms will be forthcoming in 2023. I can’t wait. Dennis Smith is a freelance outdoors writer and photographer whose work appears nationally. He lives in Loveland.
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Jewelry craftsman Spot for a day at the lake Candy maker Mountain biking trail
• • • •
Historic site Pizza Place for live music Arts & crafts fair
SUBMIT YOUR NOMINATIONS BY SEPTEMBER 10, 2021
FOR A CHANCE TO WIN ONE OF THREE $100 GIFT CARDS Share your favorites at coloradocountrylife.coop/bestof2021
COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE JULY 2021
READER POETRY This Kitchen Table
This wooden slab where, o’er the years, we spilt our milk, secrets and tears; we planned the future, spoke of yore, decided who would keep the score, of contests waged into the night, and mem’ries made til morning light; we’ve shared our fare with honored guests, from near and far whose presence blessed our fellowship, these moments dear; and now homework is finished here, and tales of school and work and play, and how we spent our time today; it’s all right here, the truth and fable, etched into this kitchen table.
FUNNY STORIES Soft Persuasion Birdsong at dawn. Birdsong at dusk. I watch the horizon dissolve to rust. I lower my blinds, relax in my chair, listen to melodies ignite in the air. David Feela, Cortez Empire Electric Association consumer-member
Daniel Dean Swanson, Calhan Mountain View Electric Association consumer-member
DO YOU WRITE POETRY? Send us your best work; we’d love to read it. Submit your best works via email to: email@example.com or mail to: Colorado Country Life, 5400 Washington St., Denver, CO 80216
My balding husband was talking
to our 5-year-old granddaughter one day. He told her he was going to get a haircut, to which she responded, “Which one?” Linda Allen, Kiowa Mountain View Electric Association consumer-member
When my daughter was 5 years old,
we were in a church service and the preacher said, “The devil will steal your joy.” My daughter replied, “So that’s what’s happening to my toys!” Anonymous
Mountain View Electric consumer-member Rick Barto takes his copy of Colorado Country Life to Alaska for his nephew’s graduation.
Elizbeth Yoder’s daughters take CCL to the Badlands in South Dakota. The Yoders are consumer-members of Poudre Valley REA.
Michelle and Jon Shaffer enjoy their copy of CCL after hiking up to Delicate Arch at Arches National Park in Moab, Utah. The Shaffers are consumermembers of San Isabel Electric.
WINNER: Poudre Valley REA consumer-members Kevin and Vickie Newlin visit Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, in April 2021.
Take Your Photo with Your Magazine and Win!
It’s easy to win with Colorado Country Life. Simply take a photo of someone (or a selfie!) with the magazine and email the photo and your name, address and your local co-op to firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll draw one photo to win $25 each month. The next deadline is Friday, July 16. Name, address and co-op must accompany photo. See all of the submitted photos on Facebook at facebook.com/COCountryLife.
My granddaughter in day care laid
on a blanket for nap time. The 4-year-old boy on the blanket next to her asked, “Will you marry me?” She shushed him and closed her eyes. He leaned over, kissed her on the cheek and asked, “Will you marry me after nap time?” She responded, “No! I don’t know how to play that game!” Cindy Irvin, Cortez Empire Electric Association consumer-member
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 2021 stories to Colorado Country Life, 5400 Washington St., Denver, CO 80216 or email email@example.com. Don’t forget to include your mailing address, so we can send you a check. COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE JULY 2021
An Outdoors State of Mind Establish an agenda for adventure Above: Reader photo by Deb Adams, a Sangre de Cristo Electric Association consumer-member.
Perform at Your Peak
More than a decade ago, the people at Pagosa Springs-based VOORMI had a vision to create clothing that could withstand the elements experienced by its customers when enjoying the outdoors. VOORMI officially launched in 2013 and today methodically creates its own fabrics, weaving in functional elements to pinpoint the needs of its customers’ activities, from running to camping to fishing and more. For more information, visit voormi.com.
Prescription eyeglass wearers can transform their everyday spectacles into sunglasses with Steamboat Springs-based EyKuver UV films. The tinted “stickers” are easy to apply, won’t damage your glasses and help protect your peepers from the sun’s harmful rays. And with a price of $9.99 per three pack, you’ll spend far less than you would to purchase a separate pair of prescription sunglasses. For more information, visit eykuver.com.
Drop a Line in Durango Whether you’re a fledgling fly fisherman or a longtime lover of the sport, Duranglers can take you through the wonderful waters of the Durango area to locate the perfect place to cast your line. Guests can wade or float with expert guides through the magnificent landscape practically any time of year. With nearly 40 years in the business, be assured it will be an angler outing you won’t forget. For more information, visit duranglers.com.
Pretty Pickleball Bags Greeley-based Sassy Caddy adds pizazz to its pickleball bags to better suit its customers’ personalities. Doubling as a tennis bag, Sassy Caddy uses fresh, vibrant fabrics to manufacture its pickleball bags, which are not only attractive but functional with adjustable straps, storage pockets and waterproof material. Cost is $54. Using the same design concepts, Sassy Caddy also makes golf bags, backpacks, messenger bags and more. For more information, visit sassycaddy.com.
WE ARE LOOKING FOR AMAZING COLORADO-MADE PRODUCTS Do you know of a great Colorado-made product that others will love too? Share it with us so we can share it with others on our Discoveries page.
COLOR ADO COUNTRY LIFE JULY 2021
Send your product ideas to: Editor Mona Neeley, 5400 Washington St., Denver, CO 80216 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Include your name, address, electric co-op you are a member of and brief description of why you love the product.
+ BENEFICIAL ELECTRIFICATION
UPGRADE TO ELECTRICITY AND SAVE Make the switch to cleaner electricity with more efficient household appliances and systems. From heat pumps to electric vehicles, these proven technologies can run your home cleanly, efficiently and cost-effectively. To learn more about rebates and incentives for electrification programs, contact your local co-op or public power district.
VISIT US AT www.tristate.coop/BE
Tri-State is a not-for-profit power supplier to cooperatives and public power districts in Colorado, Nebraska, New Mexico and Wyoming.
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Colorado Country Life July 2021 Mountain View