Gifts Jar in a
Christmas Bird Count
December 2012 [departments]
14 Building a Better World
5 Letters 6 Calendar 7 Co-op News 12 NewsClips 29 Funny Stories 30 Discoveries
16 Christmas Bird Count
Electric co-ops need grassroots support with the legislature
NRECA International Program celebrates 50 years of lighting the globe
Celebrating 113 years of holiday bird-watching
Holiday breakfast ideas that will get your family going
Gardeners find new uses for used products
Ice fishing requires caution, measured smarts to stay safe
25 Energy Tips
Soundproof your home so you can crank up the tunes
Cover design by Associate Editor Donna Wallin, photograph by Brent Ward, brentwardphotos.com COMMUNICATIONS STAFF: Mona Neeley, CCC, Publisher/Editor@303-455-4111; firstname.lastname@example.org Donna Wallin, Associate Editor; email@example.com • Amy Higgins, Writer/Editorial Assistant; firstname.lastname@example.org ADVERTISING: Kris Wendtland@303-902-7276; NCM@800-626-1181
The official publication of the Colorado Rural Electric Association || Volume 43, Number 11
OFFICERS: Bob Bledsoe [ Tri-State] President; Bill Midcap [Fort Morgan] Vice President; Don Kaufman [Sangre de Cristo] Secretary; Jack Schneider [Poudre Valley] Treasurer; Kent Singer [CREA] Executive Director BOARD OF DIRECTORS: Bill Patterson [Delta-Montrose]; John Porter [Empire]; Don McClaskey [Grand Valley]; John Vader [Gunnison]; Jim Lueck [Highline]; Megan Gilman [Holy Cross]; Dan Mills [K.C.]; Tom Compton [La Plata]; Stan Cazier [Mountain Parks]; B.D. Paddock [Mountain View]; Joseph Costa, Reg Rudolph [San Isabel]; Mike Rierson, [San Luis Valley]; Marcus Wilson, Kevin Ritter [San Miguel]; Randy Phillips [Southeast]; Jim Jaeger, Ron Asche [United Power]; Bill Jordan [ White River]; Stuart Travis [ Y-W ]; Scott McGill [Yampa Valley]; Basin Electric, CoBank, Moon Lake Electric, Wheatland Electric [Associate
Members] EDITORIAL: Denver Corporate Office, 5400 N. Washington Street, Denver, CO 80216; Phone: 303-455-4111 • Email: MNeeley@coloradocountrylife.org • Website: coloradocountrylife.coop • Facebook: Colorado Country Life • Twitter: @COCountryLife Colorado Country Life (USPS 469-400/ISSN 1090-2503) is published monthly for $9/$15 per year by Colorado Rural Electric Association, 5400 N. Washington Street, Denver, CO 80216. Periodical postage paid at Denver, Colorado. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Colorado Country Life, 5400 N. Washington Street, Denver, CO 80216 Publication of an advertisement in Colorado Country Life does not imply endorsement by any Colorado rural electric cooperative or the Colorado Rural Electric Association. 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.
CREA Needs YOU!
Your electric co-op is looking for grassroots support this legislative session BY KENT SINGER || CREA EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR || KSINGER@COLORADOREA.ORG
For decades, Colorado’s made up of co-op electric co-ops have enmember-owners joyed the strong bipartisan elected by the support of our political membership. Tell leaders because they have them that your understood that affordsystem is unique able, reliable electricity is and that one-sizecritical to the success of fits-all policies rural Colorado. They have may not be the understood this because best solution for co-op managers, directors, your co-op. employees and memberTell your legislaowners have taken the time tor that when you to contact their legislators call the co-op, you and make sure they are actually talk to a aware of how electricity co-op employee, costs impact their lives. THE COLORADO RURAL ELECTRIC ASSOCIATION not some distant We call this grassroots call center. Tell support. In political parthem that when lance, the term “grassroots” there is a power refers to the core supporters of any pareducate newly elected legislators about the outage caused by a storm, your co-op ticular candidate or issue. In the electric electric co-op program and the differlineworkers go out day or night in all co-op program, you, the member-owner ences between nonprofit co-ops and the conditions and do what is necessary to of your local electric co-op, are part of the investor-owned utilities. We are particurestore power. grassroots network that is vital in mainlarly focused on the need to keep elecIf you want to be more actively intaining our political strength. tricity affordable when many people are volved, we would be glad to add your More than ever before, the electric struggling to find work and keep up with name and contact information to our co-op program needs for its grassroots their bills. Take Action Network. From time to time, network to be engaged and active. There So what can you do? First of all, get to we activate the Take Action Network are many challenges ahead for us in meet- know your state legislator. For those of and ask co-op supporters to contact their ing our objective of providing affordable you who are represented by returning leg- legislators and let them know if they are and reliable electric power. With the islators, they should already know about in favor of or against specific legislation. deadlock in Congress, energy policy is the electric co-op program and how your If you are interested in signing up for this being made by regulatory agencies and at co-op is an essential part of your commu- network, contact me at ksinger@colorado the Colorado legislature with little connity. In that case, you might just remind rea.org cern for the impact on the pocketbooks of them that you will be carefully monitorWe can and will make a difference electricity consumers. As the old saying ing the upcoming legislative session and when it comes to Colorado energy policy. goes, if we are not at the table when these ask for their support to help keep electric- With the voices of thousands of electric policies are being made, we will surely be ity costs down. co-op member-owners, our message of reon the menu. It is especially important that you talk liable and affordable power will be heard. We expect a busy legislative session to newly elected legislators. Tell them in 2013 when it comes to energy policy. what it means to you to be a memberWe are aware of a number of proposals owner of an electric co-op and how your that could impact the cost of electricco-op is part of the community. Tell them Kent Singer, Executive Director ity in Colorado. We are busy trying to that your co-op board of directors is
FOLLOW EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR KENT SINGER’S BLOG AT COLORADOREABLOG.WORDPRESS.COM. ColoradoCountryLife.coop 4 December 2012
[letters] Letter of Appreciation
Yesterday Vicki Spencer of the Gunnison County Electric Association delivered a number of books to our library. We are delighted to have them and thank Colorado Country Life and GCEA for this generous donation. I know the books will also be appreciated by our patrons and expect that they will be well read. Larry K. Meredith, executive director
You asked readers (November ’12) our thoughts about transmission lines. I disagree with your statement that people who advocate for solar and wind power even on a personal home basis are “pushing for a move away from central station electricity generation.” I believe most intelligent people, including me, think that alternative energy sources should be encouraged and that this isn’t an exclusive either/or consideration. Those renewable sources of energy are not “an alternative to large power plants connected to homes and businesses via power lines” but an additional alternative source of power. Since our electric co-op is not-for-profit and we aren’t trying to generate profits, energy conservation and efficiency should be important goals. Europe is leading the way in providing renewable solar power to private homes as well as medium and smaller businesses. In modernizing and upgrading our local as well as national electric industry systems, not to include renewable energy sources as an important additional part of that is simply shortsighted and foolish. Malcolm Perkins, Durango
Distributed generation makes more sense than our love affair with large generation plants. Transmission lines are a weak and expensive link in the system and power plants of any variety are a liability if you consider our concern for security. Holland and Germany are putting solar panels on every building, home and commercial building to decentralize their power generation. Larry Kimball, Cotopaxi Send your letter to the editor by mail to Colorado Country Life, 5400 Washington St., Denver CO 80216 or email email@example.com. You must include your name and address to be published. Letters may be edited. ColoradoCountryLife.coop December 2012 5
[December] Through December 31 Fort Collins Garden of Lights The Gardens on Spring Creek 5-9 pm • 970-416-2486 Through January 1 Littleton “A Hudson Christmas” Light Display The Hudson Gardens & Event Center 303-797-8565 • hudson gardens.org December 7-9 Durango Festival of Trees Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad Museum 1-6 pm • 970-259-2464 December 8 Bayfield Breakfast With Santa Bayfield Elementary Gym 8 or 9 am • 970-884-8004 December 8 Durango Holiday Craft Bazaar Animas Museum 9 am-3 pm • 970-259-2402
December 11 Fort Collins “Christmas With the Celts” Concert The Lincoln Center 7:30 pm • fcgov.com/lctix/ show.php?id=323 December 12-15 Pagosa Springs “Man of La Mancha” Musical PSHS Auditorium 7-9:30 pm • admin@pagosa chamber.com December 13 Pagosa Springs Potluck Pagosa Springs Community Center 6 pm • chimneyrockco.org/ mainnew.htm December 14-15 Buena Vista “Bethlehem Marketplace: A Walk-Through Drama” Valley Fellowship Church 6-8:30 pm • 719-395-2242 December 14-16 Loveland “Sounds of Christmas” Concert Rialto Theater Center 970-962-2120 December 15 Fort Collins Acoustic Guitarist Jeff Wahl Council Tree Library 7-8:30 pm • 970-224-6122
December 8 Lake City “Christmas in Lake City” Festivities Downtown Lake City lakecity.com/index.php/events December 15-16 Golden Santa Claus Train December 8 Colorado Railroad Museum Mancos 303-279-4591 • colorado “Christmas Past” railroadmuseum.org/specialChoral Concert events-2/seasonal/ Mancos United Methodist Church December 15 7 pm • mancosvalley Gunnison chorus.org Morning Yoga Sanctuary Yoga Studio December 9 9-10 am • 970-275-8927 Beulah Winter Open House at December 15 Horseshoe Lodge Mountain Park Environmental Wiggins Holiday Craft Show Center Wiggins School 12:30-3 pm • 719-485-4444 Elementary Gym 10 am-3 pm • 970-380-1888 December 9 Durango “A Traditional Family Christmas” Concert Community Concert Hall 3 pm • durangochoralsociety. com ColoradoCountryLife.coop 6 December 2012
December 16 Sedalia Holiday Brass Concert Cherokee Ranch & Castle 5-8:30 pm • 303-688-5555 December 17 Durango Santa Sleigh Ride and Gift Giving Outdoors at Rapp Corral 5:10 pm • 970-247-8454 December 18 Kremmling Movie at the Library Kremmling Library 5-6:30 pm • 970-724-9228 December 21-23 Evergreen “A Christmas Carol” Theater Production Center/Stage 303-674-4934 • evergreen players.org December 21 Steamboat Springs Michael Kaeshammer Holiday Concert Strings Music Pavilion 7 pm • 970-879-5056 x 105 December 22 Fort Collins Winter Farmers Market Opera Galleria 10 am-2 pm • 970-219-3382
December 31 Crested Butte New Year’s Eve Party and Benefit Magic Meadows Yurt 7-10 pm • cbnordic.org/events/ new-years-eve-party/ December 31 Telluride Torchlight Parade and Fireworks Telluride Trail and Mountain Village 6:30 pm • tellurideski resort.com/TellSki/info/activ ities-events.aspx
[ January] January 5-10 Steamboat Springs MusicFest Steamboat Ski & Resort 970-879-6111 January 6-12 Breckenridge Ullr Fest Town of Breckenridge gobreck.com/events/ullr-fest January 7-12 Summit County Sprint U.S. Grand Prix Copper Mountain coppercolorado.com/winter/ events_and_activities/ calendar/index.html
December 23 Telluride “Warren Miller’s Flow State” Showings January 8 Sheridan Opera House Fort Collins 4, 6 & 8:30 pm • 970-728-6363 Great Horned Owl Presentation December 24 Old Town Library Winter Park 12-1 pm • 970-224-6122 Christmas Eve Torchlight Parade January 9 Base of Winter Park Resort Denver 5:30 pm • 970-726-1564 Colorado’s Constitution Walking Tour December 26 History Colorado Center Grand Lake 10:30-11:30 am • history Historical Holiday Celebration colorado.org Kauffman House Museum 6-9 pm • 970-627-9644 SEND CALENDAR December 27 Aspen “Best of the Fest” 2012 Aspen Laff Festival Wheeler Opera House 8:15 pm • 970-920-5770
TWO MONTHS IN ADVANCE TO:
Calendar, Colorado Country Life, 5400 N. Washington St., Denver, CO 80216; fax to 303-455-2807; or email calendar @coloradocountrylife.org. For more information on these and other events, visit coloradocountrylife.coop
Y-W ELECTRIC ASSOCIATION, INC.
[Y-W News] DECK THE HALLS WITH COST-SAVING, ENERGY-EFFICIENT LIGHTING BY ANGELA PEREZ
When one goes out, they all go out, right? Wrong, if you use light-emitting diodes to do your holiday decorating. These hardy, energy-saving lights are guaranteed to give you one less thing to worry about so you can better focus on the joys of the season. Why are LED holiday lights better than traditional bulbs? Y-W Electric Association tells you why. • LEDs are now on par with traditional bulbs. Gone are the days when LED holiday lights were known for a harsh white light or stark colors that created a lessthan-magical atmosphere. These days, LEDs come in warm, inviting colors in a variety of light beam patterns and dimming speeds, giving you lots of creative options for decorating. • LEDs last longer than traditional lights. In fact, they have an operational life span of about 20,000 hours, enough to last for 40 holiday seasons. Also, the lights don’t have glass or filaments, which makes them durable and resistant to breaking. And because LED bulbs are so strong, one individual outage generally doesn’t darken
Look for brands and manufacturers of Energy Star-qualified LED decorative light strings at energystar.gov. the whole strand. For those enthusiastic decorators who like to blanket their entire house and yard in holiday lights, LEDs could save hours of painstaking work of finding a bad bulb each year. • LEDs use less energy, which means less strain on your first winter electric bill. Running LEDs on one 6-foot Christmas tree for 12 hours per day for 40 days can save 90
percent or more energy when compared to traditional incandescent lights. • Because they use less energy, LEDs make it safer to connect multiple strands end-to-end without overloading the wall socket. Also, they’re cool to the touch, reducing the risk of fire. (Gary C. Peterson, 2016003002)
ColoradoCountryLife.coop December 2012 7
[Y-W News] Longtime Employee Retires
After more than 14 years of service to Y-W Electric Association, Judy Woodward has decided to retire and take time to enjoy her family and hobbies. In October of 1998 Judy began her employment with Y-W as an engineering clerk; after a few months she moved to the operations clerk position. Judy plans to spend her retirement enjoying the company of her children, grandchildren, friends and family and playing lots of bridge. From all of us here at Y-W Electric, enjoy retire- Judy Woodward would like to thank everyone for her time at ment, Judy! Y-W Electric.
2012 COMES TO AN END AT Y-W
The year 2012 will soon be coming to a close and many of our consumers are reviewing their power consumption and costs for the past year. Be aware that because of the billing cycle, the December 2012 usage is not billed until the third week of January 2013. Since the usage for the calendar year is not billed in the calendar year (December billed in January), what you have paid for usage at a certain location during the calendar year is not necessarily the 2012 usage. We can help you with any questions concerning your usage or revenue. When requesting yearly information, please specify whether you need the yearly usage, the total amount paid during the year or both. (Steve Prescott, 951700801) If you have any questions, or need information about your accounts, please contact our billing department at 800-660-2291 or come into the Akron office. We can easily give you the kilowatt-hour and revenue figures for 2012. If you require more information than this, please allow us a few days to get it accumulated. Please keep this in mind when requesting yearly information. All of us at Y-W Electric sincerely wish you a prosperous new year.
Claim Your $20 Credit
Each month, Y-W Electric offers members a chance to earn a $20 credit on their next electric bill. If you recognize your name and account number in this magazine, call 800-660-2291 and ask for your credit. It couldn’t be easier. Members claiming their $20 credit from the October 2012 issue were Marvin McDonald, Kevin and Kim Krause, William and Maudy Baker, Robert Trautman and Lennie Klassen. Get acquainted with your account number, read your Colorado Country Life magazine and pick up the phone. That’s all the energy you’ll need to claim your energy bucks. You must claim your credit during the month in which your name appears in the magazine (check the date on the front cover). ColoradoCountryLife.coop 8 December 2012
2013 SCHOLARSHIPS AVAILABLE FOR KIDS Get your applications in prior to the deadline to compete for the following scholarships: n Y-W Electric* $1,000 per year scholarships, renewable up to $4,000 n Y-W Electric* $1,000 scholarships n Basin Electric $1,000 scholarships n Y-W Electric* $500 scholarships n Y-W Electric* $500 continuing education scholarship n Tri-State Generation and Transmission $500 scholarships n Y-W Electric* $1,000 line technician training scholarship * Y-W Electric scholarships are funded by the unclaimed capital credits account
To qualify for these scholarships: n Your parents or guardians must receive electric service from Y-W Electric n You must be a graduating student from a local high school or approved home schooling program or be a continuing college student n You must maintain full-time resident student status n Semesters must be continuous excluding summer n You must provide a copy of grade transcript to Y-W at the end of each semester to receive renewable funding for specific scholarships n You must maintain minimum grade point average requirements Applications were made available on our website, www.ywelectric.coop. (Kelly Davisson, 2065003524) Applications must be delivered to Y-W prior to February 1, 2013. Applications received after February 1, 2013, will not be considered, regardless of postmark. For more information, see your guidance counselor or call Andy Molt at Y-W Electric Association at 970-345-2291.
JUNIORS: WIN A TRIP TO CAMP
Attention high school juniors: If you are interested in an intriguing, all-expense-paid experience this summer, please obtain and fill out an application for the Leadership Camp. The application deadline is February 1, 2013. Six juniors will be selected from applicants to attend the Leadership Camp to be held July 14-19, 2013, based at the Glen Eden Resort north of Steamboat Springs beside the Elk River. About 100 students are chosen and sponsored by rural electric cooperatives from all over Colorado, Kansas, Wyoming and Oklahoma to attend this camp near Steamboat Lake. Designed to provide a better understanding of cooperatives, legislative processes, energy prices, power generation and the rural electric cooperative program, the camp also concentrates on developing leadership
skills to handle the challenges of the future. The camp, run by the students, is a lot of fun but also provides an excellent learning experience. Field trips are planned to tour a large open-pit coal mine and a huge electric generation power plant. Various committees are responsible for planning a hot springs swimming party, a dance, a banquet and other evening entertainment. All expenses for the camp are covered by Y-W Electric Association. The parent or guardian of an applicant must be a member of Y-W and/or directly receive electric power from Y-W Electric. The selection process is conducted similar to a job interview so you will gain experience in that area. Attendance at the seminar will look good on your scholarship applications for college and you will get to meet 100 students of your own age and make lifetime acquaintances.
For years, this camp has been known as the premier summer camp experience. Applications are available on our website, www.ywelectric.coop. For more information, please see your guidance counselor or call Andy Molt at Y-W Electric at 970-345-2291. He will be happy to answer any questions.
Entertainment Can Be an Energy Drain
Holidays can be drainstart, it’s worth taking a look if ing: dinner at the in-laws; you want to trim your electric parties at work and school; bill. buying, wrapping, unIf there’s no power saving wrapping and cleaning up. option, you can slay that enerWhile at the end of a long gy vampire by using a “smart” day this season it’s nice power strip. This technology to fire up the big-screen allows you to plug devices into television and watch “It’s a specially marked section of a Wonderful Life,” note the strip to keep power flowing that when you go to bed to them while letting you turn your television and home off other items. This way, you entertainment system don’t can shut off your stereo, DVD really take a rest. player or audio system without Many of these devices, losing the ability to record proas well as your computer grams or having to reprogram Regular power strips and “smart” power strips can help cut down on “phanequipment, use energy even tom” power draws from many electronics. the television every time you when turned off. For example, want to watch a show. your high-definition television could be remembering the last Of course, there’s always a catch. If you unplug your televichannel you viewed or the language you speak. This power draw sion or cable or satellite receiver box, it usually has to run its is commonly called “phantom” or “vampire” load. According to initial setup program when switched back on. Depending on the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, the average home atmodel, it could take up to 20 minutes for channels to be recogtributes 8 percent of its monthly electricity consumption to these nized, and you may have to reset preferences. Most of us aren’t energy vampires. willing to do that every day. (Edward Dreher, 331809700) Fortunately, televisions and DVD players often have powerThe bottom line: Entertaining doesn’t have to drain your budsaving settings in the setup menu. Although altering the factory get. In fact, the money you save by eliminating the energy vamsettings usually means the unit will take a few more seconds to pires in your home may even be enough to go out to a movie.
ColoradoCountryLife.coop December 2012 9
[Y-W News] “Paws” and Take Steps to Keep Pets Safe from Electrical Hazards
Happy Holidays from all the folks at Y-W Electric. Y-W Electric offices will be closed the afternoon of December 24. Y-W Electric will be closed December 25 and January 1.
Every year thousands of pets around the country are given as gifts during the holiday season. If you are thinking about joining this tradition, please “paws” to prepare your home before bringing a furry friend home for the holidays. Puppies and kittens are naturally curious and tend to turn unexpected household items into play or chew toys. A frisky dog or curious cat can cause an electrical hazard or fire in ways you may not have thought about.
Your co-op’s Safe Electricity program offers this safety checklist: p Keep electrical cords away from puppies and kittens so they don’t chew on them and get a severe shock. What may seem like a mild shock to an adult may be enough to kill a small pet. Cover the cord with a For additional electrical safety tips, visit Safe Electricity.org.
ColoradoCountryLife.coop 10 December 2012
heavy plastic sleeve, or ask your pet store for a bitter-tasting product you could put on the cord. p Check to be sure night-lights and appliances are completely plugged into wall outlets. Paws or tongues can easily find partially exposed prongs, which are a hazard for curious puppies and kittens. p Halogen lamps should never be used in play areas. Halogen bulbs can reach high temperatures and, if knocked over during play, could easily start a fire. p All appliances near sinks or bathtubs should be plugged into an outlet equipped with a ground fault circuit interrupter. Playful pets can knock radios, curling irons and other items into water, creating a dangerous situation. GFCIs stop the flow of electricity instantly if there is a problem and, when properly used, can save lives. p Do not allow pets to curl up for a nap behind warm computer equipment. They need to learn to stay away from all electrical connections. (Darrell L. Johnson, 621005902)
ColoradoCountryLife.coop September 2012 11
Summit Focuses on Innovation in Energy
Rare earth metals and their importance in new energy innovations were topics in one session of the Colorado Rural Electric Association’s 2012 Energy Innovations Summit, October 29 in downtown Denver. Sessions also discussed electric vehicles, nuclear energy, biomass development and more. In this ever-evolving world of energy policy, CREA works to keep its members on top of the latest developments. As part of that effort, CREA has hosted the Energy Innovations Summit for the past three years and opened it to others outside the electric co-op community who are interested in these topics. This year’s summit included a robust discussion of the future of coal-fired generation with executives from Xcel Energy, Colorado Springs Utilities and Tri-State Generation and Transmission. All of the panelists agreed that the currently low natural gas prices are a boon for utilities and their consumers, but the companies will all continue to rely on generation from their coal-fired fleets for a long time to come. The utilities representatives also reviewed the technologies they are exploring to reduce emissions from the coal plants to keep them viable into the future. One of the highlights of the conference was the luncheon presentation by Dr. Tom Anklam from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Dr. Anklam provided a fascinating look at the laser inertial fusion energy or LIFE project that he and his team are working on in California. The potential for energy production from elements found in seawater is game changing, and Dr. Anklam’s presentation demonstrated that great strides are being made in that technology.
The audience in one of the breakout sessions listens to a panel of experts talk about the future of coal-fired generation. On the panel are (left to right) Karen Hyde of Xcel, Bruce McCormick of Colorado Springs Utilities, Mike McInnes of Tri-State and Kent Singer of CREA, who moderated the panel.
The day wrapped up with a discussion of energy venture capital opportunities in Colorado. Attendees declared the day a success as the summit brought together diverse stakeholders to talk about challenges and solutions in today’s electric industry. Many points of view were offered and many opinions were shared. It was a day of looking to the future, working to find ways to keep electricity reliable, affordable and safe for electric co-op members.
COLORADO CO-OPS RATE IN TOP 10 FOR SOLAR CAPACITY
Solar rankings issued by the Solar Electric Power Association list Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association in the top 10 nationwide for new solar capacity. According to National Rural Electric Cooperative Association data, cooperatives nationwide own or purchase a total of more than 34 megawatts of solar power. TriState purchases the output of one of the nation’s largest solar photovoltaic facilities, Cimarron Solar Facility, which came on line in 2010. The 30-megawatt power plant sits on a 250-acre site in Colfax County in northeastern New Mexico, within the service territory of Tri-State member system Springer Electric Cooperative. NRECA is the national service organization for more than 900 rural electric utilities that provide electricity to approximately 42 million consumers in 47 states and sell approximately 12 percent of all electric energy sold in the United States. Most NRECA members are consumer-owned, not-for-profit electric cooperatives.
ColoradoCountryLife.coop 12 December 2012
A question about central station electricity generation and its inherent transmission lines versus distributed generation brought in lots of emails last month. In general, readers like the idea of renewable energy being developed at homes and businesses, especially with solar panels. However, many of the readers also noted that there are currently limitations on these power sources, and central station electricity with its power poles and lines will be with us for a while. Some said they prefer the traditional power lines to the huge wind turbines that dot some landscapes.
This month we are asking:
What do you think about state government requiring you to use less electricity on an annual basis? Email your thoughts to info@colorado countrylife.org.
Will Exposure to Smart Meters Hurt My Family? BY MONA NEELEY || EDITOR/PUBLISHER || MNEELEY@COLORADOCOUNTRYLIFE.ORG
Many electric co-op members are concerned about radio frequency or RF exposure from new meters being installed on their homes. Just how strong is the RF from a smart meter? Based on information from the Federal Communications Commission, the RF exposure one yard away from a smart meter is 0.000015 milliwatts per square centimeter. That is less than the RF exposure from your cell phone, your microwave oven, Wi-Fi signals and your average person. The average human body emits an RF of 0.0003, which is 20 times greater than the RF from a smart meter. Your cell phone emits an RF that is 12,667 times greater than that from the meter.
ColoradoCountryLife.coop December 2012 13
Bill Marr, a lineman with White River Valley Electric Cooperative, Branson, Missouri, trains local linemen in Portau-Prince, Haiti, on how to safely use equipment.
BUILDING A BETTER WORLD NRECA International Programs celebrates 50 years of lighting the globe BY FRANK K. GALLANT
For 70 years, the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association has represented America’s electric co-ops, fighting to keep electricity affordable, reliable and safe, and improve the rural quality of life. But over the past half-century, the scope of its work has reached far beyond U.S. borders.
On November 1, 1962, NRECA and the U.S. Agency for International Development — then a relatively new federal agency set up “to assist people overseas struggling to make a better life” (and resist communist expansion) — formed a partnership to carry the successful U.S. electric cooperative model to distant lands. President John F. Kennedy witnessed the signing of the agreement where he stated, “… this contract holds special promise for those countries which have realized only a small fraction of their energy potential.” In the ensuing 50 years, with the support of more than 300 NRECA member co-ops, NRECA International Programs spearheaded electrification projects that have resulted in increased agricultural productivity and millions of new jobs and enhanced the quality of life for more than 100 million people in 40-plus nations. “Building a better planet takes experience,” NRECA CEO Glenn English says. “And no group has more experience bring-
ColoradoCountryLife.coop 14 December 2012
ing low-cost power to far-flung communities than America’s electric co-ops.” One of the first projects in the late 1960s took NRECA International Programs experts and later volunteers from Lenoir, North Carolina-based Blue Ridge Electric Membership Corporation to Santa Cruz, Bolivia, to form Cooperativa Rural de Electrification Ltda. CRE, as it is known, grew rapidly and has emerged as the world’s largest electric co-op, with more than 450,000 members. NRECA International Programs remains in Bolivia and is in talks with Cochabamba Power and Light Company about line extension proposals to irrigate the isolated Cochabamba Valleys region. To date, at least 25 percent of the Bolivian distribution system development has been supported by NRECA International Programs funding and expertise. As NRECA International Programs began branching out, it adopted a slogan: “Electrifying the world . . . one village at a time.” A 1977 pilot study in Bangladesh led to the establish-
ment of 70 co-ops that now distribute power to 45 million rural residents. When an NRECA International Programs team arrived in the Philippines 40 years ago, 80 percent of the population lived in rural areas with less than 10 percent receiving central station electric service. Today, 78 percent of the South Pacific nation’s dwellings have power, and 119 rural co-ops now serve 40 million consumers. A number of other projects have been equally successful, says Dan Waddle, senior vice president of NRECA International Programs. “The four electric co-ops in Costa Rica represent approximately 15 percent of the total electric distribution market and cover roughly 40 percent of rural areas in that country,” he says. “They are completely self-sustaining and have expanded the scope and range of their offerings. Costa Ricans are gung ho for democracy, so they really embrace co-ops.” The four Costa Rican organizations, along with co-ops and rural municipal utilities in Chile, Brazil, Bolivia, the Dominican Republic and Guatemala, make up the Smart Grid Alliance, which aims to use large commercial and industrial accounts to demonstrate advanced metering infrastructure. AMI is a comprehensive set of technologies and software applications that combine two-way communications with smart meters, using frequent meter reads, to provide electric utilities near real-time supervision of system operations. Through the alliance, American co-ops will be able to share smart grid technology, experiences and best practices. “It’s a rare opportunity for these participants,” Waddle asserts. “They don’t have access to distribution automation technology like we do. They’re small, they’re rural and vendors don’t visit them very often except to sell products. They seldom have the opportunity for real exchange.”
Leading the charge from Virginia
Waddle leads a staff of 14 from NRECA’s headquarters in Arlington, Virginia. Five reside in the countries they are responsible for: Guatemala, Bolivia/Dominican Republic, Haiti, South Sudan, and Bangladesh. NRECA International Programs is made up of two arms. One, the NRECA International Foundation, a registered charitable 501(c)(3) organization founded in 1985. It partners with electric co-ops in the United States to provide funding, equipment and volunteer personnel to assist foreign electric co-ops. Two, NRECA International, Ltd., which provides guidance to newly formed co-ops during the initial stages of operation and offers technical help to those that have difficulties achieving sustainable operation. The organization operates offices in nine countries with electrification projects in 13: Bangladesh, Bolivia, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Pakistan, the Philippines, South Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda and Yemen. NRECA International Foundation recruits co-op volunteers — usually line technicians, CEOs and engineering managers — to send on two- to three-week assignments. While overseas, line technicians build distribution systems, wire houses and train
native line crews to work more productively and safely. Co-op managers educate administrators and board members, while engineers guide their counterparts in line design and substation construction and maintenance. In addition, NRECA International Foundation oversees four donation programs. Dozens of co-ops contribute monetarily, while others turn over used line trucks and distribution equipment. “Transformers and bucket trucks are especially valuable and are always in demand,” stresses Ingrid Hunsicker, NRECA International Foundation senior program manager. “Co-op employees can give to the Foundation through the United Co-op Appeal ‘Gift of Light’ program, an annual workplace fundraising campaign handled by the Cooperative Development Foundation.”
The road ahead
As NRECA International Programs embarks on its next 50 years, an enormous new mission has arisen in South Asia and Africa. “We’ve already picked the low-hanging fruit,” Waddle says. “For example, rural Bangladeshis live in densely packed villages, where sufficient revenue exists per mile of line to support a utility. That’s not the case elsewhere. In Uganda, only 9 percent of the population has access to electricity, and in rural areas, it’s much lower. On top of that, few people have the ability to pay for electricity.” But political strife more than infrastructure hardships makes Third World electrification increasingly difficult. “Our biggest concern right now is security, and the safety of our personnel. Afghanistan, South Sudan, Uganda and Pakistan all experience severe peace-and-order problems,” Waddle says. Of course, social upheaval, economic instability and physical danger have always lurked on the periphery of NRECA International Programs endeavors. But its dedicated contingent has never let that get in the way. They’ve negotiated with government officials, unearthed financial resources and made sure indigenous workers and American electric co-op volunteers stay safe. As he looks five years out, Waddle expects that Africa and South Asia will occupy much of his section’s attention. Pakistani utilities, he explains, “must improve rural line design and construction standards and invest in new technology. Most Pakistanis have central station power, but the distribution system is old and outdated.” Africa likely will present the greatest challenge of all. “The needs on the continent are immense, and the situation is grim,” Waddle says. “There are two key issues: food security and water. Electricity plays a big role in both.” Frank Gallant writes on electric cooperative issues for the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, the Arlington, Virginia-based service organization for the nation’s 900-plus consumer-owned, not-for-profit electric cooperatives.
ColoradoCountryLife.coop December 2012 15
Christmas Bird Count BY DENNIS SMITH
“Winter is for the birds.” We’ve probably all heard that idiom a million times and it seems the older we get the truer it rings. One thing is certain though; whoever coined the expression didn’t consult the birds first — not in this neck of the woods anyway. I mean if you’re a bird in Colorado in the dead of winter, what’s to like? Your food and water supplies are pretty much dried up, depleted, dead, frozen or buried under a foot-and-a-half of snow; it’s bitter cold, the wind is howling and most of your friends have flown to warmer climes leaving you to shiver cold and hungry in an ice encrusted pine tree for the next three months. Birds like this? I don’t think so. And yet, at no time of the year is more concentrated human attention focused on our fine feathered friends than in winter and, ColoradoCountryLife.coop 16 December 2012
The 113th Christmas Bird Count will take place from December 14, 2012, through January 5, 2013.
more specifically, in those weeks surof birds, with most counts in or around rounding the Christmas holidays. This, the heavily populated centers of North you see, is the season of the annual America. In the 112 years since its incepnationwide Christmas Bird Count. tion, the CBC has grown to include more An international research phethan 50,000 individual counters at more nomenon organized by the National than 2,000 locations across the breadth Audubon Society and conducted by and length of the Western Hemisphere. tens of thousands of volunteers from The CBC is unique in that observthe Arctic Circle to the tip of Tierra del ers not only identify individual species Fuego, the CBC has become the largest encountered in the field during the count, and longest running “citizen science” but also how many of each, as well as how program of its kind in the Western much actual time they spend counting Hemisphere. them and under what weather conditions. Celebrating its 113th anniversary The national summary of the 112th CBC this year, the CBC emerged from a (2011-2012) for example, revealed that Win a pair of binoculars for somewhat dubious custom. Prior to its 63,223 volunteers operating from 2,248 bird-watching. creation in 1900, communities engaged locations tallied over 60 million birds in Visit coloradocountrylife.org, in a holiday tradition known as the 646 individual, positively identified speclick on Contest for directions Christmas “Side Hunt,” so named becies — an all-time record, by the way. The on how to enter to win. cause participants would choose sides, counts took place in all 50 U.S. states, all go afield with guns instead of check 10 Canadian provinces and 99 other count sheets and kill as many wild critters as they could — game birds, circles in Latin America, the Caribbean and the Pacific. songbirds, shorebirds, prairie dogs, woodchucks, pack As you might have guessed, the Colorado birding community rats, mice, gophers, ground squirrels, tree squirrels, muskrats, plays an extremely active role in every CBC. Two years ago, in beavers, whatever. It didn’t matter. If it wore hair, feathers or fur, the 111th CBC (2010-2011), 45 teams of volunteer citizen-scienit counted. tists, “count circles” in bird-watcher’s parlance, from our cities, Whichever “side” brought in the biggest pile of corpses won. mountain towns and farm communities across the state went It remains unclear what the winning teams may have “won,” afield armed with binoculars, spotting scopes, check sheets, whether the collected carcasses were consumed or disposed cameras and guidebooks to collect data for the big count. of, and if the gruesome tallies ever generated any meaningful Count circles include folks of all ages, from all walks of life, scientific data. Probably not. and can range in size from as few as three or four volunteers to While this sort of thing would be enough to give contempoa few dozen. They usually include an expert ornithologist or rary conservationists a raging case of the vapors, it is nonetheexperienced birder to help beginners with birding technique and less reflective of the prevailing and grossly misguided national identification questions, and a team leader or compiler whose attitude toward wildlife in the late 19th century — namely that job it is to organize the group, collect data sheets at the end of wildlife existed in infinite numbers. the count, compile the results and forward them to the Audubon Ironically, it was that same kind of thinking that allowed Society’s national Christmas Bird Count director. John James Audubon to kill hundreds of wild specimens before Each circle is assigned a specific “count day” in which to constuffing, studying and painting them for his highly acclaimed il- duct its surveys. In the 23-day count that ran from December 14, lustrated volumes of American wildlife. Maybe if he’d had access 2010, to January 5, 2011, Colorado birders drove, hiked, cycled, to a digital camera, things would have been different. skied or snowshoed into their designated territories covering Fortunately, wildlife conservation was beginning to creep into an infinite array of habitat types and geographical environthe collective American consciousness near the turn of the 19th ments from prairie floors at 3,300 feet in the case of the John century, and many forward-thinking observers and scientists Martin Reservoir circle to the 10,000-foot slopes encountered by were becoming increasingly concerned about declining bird counters in the Grand Mesa circle. populations. The Audubon Society was in its formative years, Volunteers can experience extremes in weather depending, of and Frank Chapman, an officer in the fledgling organization, course, on the day they go afield and the exact location of their proposed the radical idea of replacing the Side Hunt with a new areas. We all know about Colorado’s rapid-fire weather changes. holiday tradition. He suggested counting, rather than killing, the By way of illustration, counters in the Fountain Creek circle, birds. who conducted their count on December 14, enjoyed a balmy His idea took wing, as they say, and the Audubon Society’s 64 degrees and were able to chalk up 89 bird species. The Barr first official bird count took place on Christmas Day of 1900. Lake circle wasn’t quite so fortunate; it was a chilly 29 degrees on Twenty-seven volunteers in 25 locations ranging from Toronto, January 1, when its members recorded 63 species in its territory. [continued on page 18] Ontario, to Pacific Grove, California, recorded around 90 species And the 13 volunteers in the North Park ColoradoCountryLife.coop December 2012 17
[continued from page 17]
circle had to endure minus 22 degrees to log 21 species and 436 birds. Considering the brutal conditions, they ought to get a medal. A typical count day might start with members of the circle rendezvousing at a common assembly point where the compiler will organize and direct the volunteers on how to best cover their 15-mile wide territory. Birders will then disperse with their optics and check sheets to see how many individual birds and species they can find, and enter their sightings on check sheets specifically designed to reflect not only numbers and species of birds recorded but also prevailing weather conditions, hours counted, and other relevant details as well. Long time birders go about this with the polished precision born of years of experience, but beginners and kids may require a bit of coaching from the experts. Brock McCormick, a wildlife biologist with the U.S. Forest Service, advises new birders to first “look for movement … something scurrying in the bushes, a flicker or flash in the treetops, rustling noises in the underbrush,” all of which may signal the presence of a bird. Birds may also be identified by sound. Those who are familiar with the distinctive songs of a particular bird or birds can chalk up a sighting based on that knowledge, but a visual is preferred. Between December 14, 2010, and January 5, 2011, Colorado’s birders searched known birding hot spots in their local backyards and city parks, high mountain lakes, beaver ponds, spruce forests, aspen stands, farm ponds, cattail sloughs, crop fields, sage flats, expansive short grass prairies, cottonwood river bottoms, high plains reservoirs and ponderosa-studded foothills to turn in an astonishing tally of 205 separate species totaling 781,067 birds. That’s remarkable. And if it proves anything at all, it may just be that while the birds may not like winter, Colorado’s birdwatchers sure do. Dennis Smith is a freelance outdoor writer, photographer and columnist from Loveland. Dennis writes a monthly outdoor column for Colorado Country Life. His work also appears in several national and regional publications.
BIRD-WATCHING IS FUN Fifty thousand people can’t be wrong. That’s how many volunteer “citizen scientists” sign up each winter to participate in the National Audubon Society’s annual Christmas Bird Count. It’s fun, educational and healthy and provides another excuse to get outdoors and, perhaps most importantly, contributes directly to a 112-year-old database use by ornithologists, scientists, resource managers, wildlife watchers and professionals around the world to track not only bird population trends by species, but also the effects of climate, habitat and environmental changes on songbirds, waterfowl, shorebirds, raptors and interrelated wildlife. Everyone and anyone are encouraged to take part. Children are certainly encouraged and, beginning in 2012, the previous $5 fee for adult participants has been eliminated. But first you will need to find a count circle near you. It should be pretty easy. Colorado has an extremely active contingent of bird-watchers located in cities, suburbs and rural communities, and at least 45 known count circles (far too many to list here) are scattered across the entire state. You can begin your search at app.audubon.org/ cbcapp/findCircles.jsp?state+US-CO&start. For further information or assistance, go to Denver Field Ornithologists at dfobirders.org; or Boulder County Audubon Society, boulderaudubon.org; fortnet.org/Audubon for the Fort Collins Audubon Society; or try the Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory at rmbo.org. If all else fails, simply do an Internet search for something like Colorado Christmas Bird Count. If you register, you should try to outfit yourself with good binoculars or a spotting scope with tripod, a couple of birding guidebooks and, possibly, a camera. Some birding circles may have loaner gear available. Be sure to dress in layers appropriate to seasonal weather conditions and carry a small backpack stocked with high-energy snacks, drinks, mittens or gloves, some of those neat little chemical hand warmers and sunglasses. It’s always advisable to carry a small first aid kit. Winter isn’t just for the birds, it’s for bird-watching.
Blue Jay ColoradoCountryLife.coop 18 December 2012
ColoradoCountryLife.coop Septembere 2012 23
Rise (and Shine) to the Occasion
Breakfast ideas that will get your guests up and going BY AMY HIGGINS || AHIGGINS@COLORADOCOUNTRYLIFE.ORG Ideas to Waffle On • Always let your waffle iron heat up until a few drops of water flicked on the surface sizzle. • If the ready light or alarm on your waffle maker corresponds to a level of doneness you like, great. If not, don’t be afraid to peek under the lid after a couple of minutes. You can always leave the waffle in longer if it’s too pale, or you can crisp it further in the oven.
This holiday season don’t just dazzle your house guests with delectable dinner dishes. Put some pep in their step with amazing breakfast fare. Sure, bacon and eggs can do the trick, but why not step it up a notch and present them with something a little less predictable? This year, try one of these lip-smackers:
Chocolate Waffles with Carmel Syrup and Bacon Bacon 3/4 cup water 1/4 cup pure vegetable oil 1 large egg 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 packet (7 ounces) chocolate chip pancake mix or 1 packet (7 ounces) buttermilk pancake mix 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 3 tablespoons sugar Nonstick cooking spray Heat waffle iron according to manufacturer’s directions. Whisk water, oil, egg and vanilla in large bowl. Stir in pancake mix, cocoa and sugar until evenly moistened. Allow to stand 1 minute. Coat waffle iron with nonstick cooking spray. Pour 1/4 cup batter for each waffle onto waffle iron. Bake 4 to 5 minutes or until done. Repeat to make a total of 10 4-inch waffles.
Find More Coloradocountry life.coop has many more delicious holiday breakfast recipes for your family to enjoy.
1/4 cup pancake syrup 3/4 cup sundae syrup, caramel flavored Whipped cream Ground cinnamon to taste 1/4 cup diced cooked bacon Whisk together pancake syrup and caramel flavored syrup in small bowl. Drizzle 1 tablespoon on serving plates. Cut 2 waffles in half diagonally to make 4 triangles. Arrange on top of syrup. Top with additional caramel flavored syrup, whipped cream, a sprinkle of cinnamon and bacon pieces. Repeat to make additional servings.
ColoradoCountryLife.coop 20 December 2012
Overnight Breakfast Casserole 2 packages (12 ounces each) breakfast sausage links 6 English muffins, cut into 1-inch cubes 1/4 cup butter, melted 1 cup (4 ounces) cheddar cheese, shredded 1 cup (4 ounces) mozzarella cheese, shredded 1/2 cup onion, chopped 1/2 cup red pepper, chopped 12 large eggs 2 cups milk 1/4 teaspoon salt Pepper to taste 1/4 cup bacon bits Cook sausage according to package directions. Cool slightly; cut into 1/4-inch pieces. In greased 13- by 9-inch baking dish, layer half the English muffin cubes and half the cooked sausage. Repeat layers. Drizzle with butter and top with cheeses, onion and red pepper. In large bowl, combine eggs, milk, salt and pepper. Pour over casserole. Sprinkle with bacon bits. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Remove from refrigerator 30 minutes before baking. Uncover and bake at 350 degrees for 45 to 50 minutes, or until knife inserted into center comes out clean. Let stand 5 minutes.
A CCL SUBSCRIPTION MAKES A GREAT CHRISTMAS GIFT Did you know that you could get a Colorado Country Life subscription for $9 in-state and $15 out-of-state? Just call the nice people at CCL at 303-4554111.
You know my sister lives in Arizona and would really like to read about home. I will get her a subscription for Christmas. Thanks for the great gift idea!.
Gift Giving Guide ColoradoCountryLife.coop December 2012 21
New Uses for Old Products
1. and 6. Billboard vinyls are repurposed tarps and liners. This heavy waterproof material is great for covering hay, boats, equipment, and for use as pond and stream liners. 2. and 3. Roof pavers have found new function as garden stepping stones and as non-slip flooring. 4. A snow fence has been repurposed into a bridge. 5. Formerly used for a sports field, this synthetic turf has found new life in a high traffic area where living turf would be impractical and not sustainable.
Retired, everyday items have new purposes in yards and gardens BY EVA ROSE MONTANE || ABUNDANTEARTHGARDENS.COM || GARDENING@COLORADOCOUNTRYLIFE.ORG
There’s a fairly young Colorado company I want to introduce you to. It is called repurposedMATERIALS. Like its name implies, the company reuses materials that are no longer used for their original purpose to create new, resourceful items and makes them available for consumers to purchase. “This unique concept not only adds life to the materials by keeping them out of the waste stream, it also provides our customers with sustainable products that do the job at the fraction of the cost,” the company website touts. Sounds good, doesn’t it? And if you’re like the majority of the gardeners I know, you’re a do-it-yourselfer and I’ll bet you’ll love many of the garden applications repurposedMATERIALS comes up with for its salvaged products. The following are just some of the materials available and how they’ve been repurposed: • Wine barrels cut in half to create beautiful wooden planters • Plastic pallets originally used for shipping pieced together to make sturdy raised paths or drainage areas for potted plants • Conveyor belting used in mines repurposed to create mud-free, weed-free walkways • Billboards made of heavy-duty vinyl sheets find a new life as pond liners, frost protection pieces or compost pile covers
• Synthetic turf from sports fields repurposed to cover bare spots in landscapes that won’t hold natural turf • Roofing pavers nicely adapted as stepping stones • Sturdy, lightweight beverage filter cloths used as lawn debris tarps for collecting and dragging trimmings during spring and fall cleanup • Swimming pool safety covers made of coarse mesh material repurposed as sun shade covers for growing plants or for people and/or animals • Used lumber to create raised beds and other garden features • Decommissioned fire hoses repurposed as irrigation hoses You don’t need to be an industrial company to make use of these innovative products. Owner Damon Carson says his company has many customers who buy these repurposed products for home use. I encourage you to peruse the repurposedmaterialsinc. com website and consider what uses these materials might have in your garden. Then contact he company at 303-3211471 to order. Not only will your purchase help keep stuff out of the landfill, you will pay 50 to 75 percent less than you would for other products with an equivalent purpose. The repurposed materials can be shipped or picked up in Denver.
Eva Rose Montane is a garden coach, consultant and designer. Read more gardening advice at coloradocountrylife.coop. Click on Living in Colorado and then Gardening.
ColoradoCountryLife.coop 22 December 2012
ColoradoCountryLife.coop Septembere 2012 23
Icing on the Lake
Ice fishing requires caution, and measured smarts BY DENNIS SMITH
WE NEED YOUR HELP Colorado Country Life will be randomly surveying its readers by mail. Watch for a mailing from Colorado Country Life during the first part of December. Please complete the survey and send it back. We want to know how to better serve you. If you have any questions call 303455-4111 or email info@coloradocountry life.org. ColoradoCountryLife.coop 24 December 2012
Around this time last year a lady fell through the ice and drowned while walking her dogs on a frozen golf course pond in Denver. It’s horribly sad, and all the more tragic because it could easily have been avoided. This sort of thing happens every year, repeatedly, without fail, and yet I continue to be amazed when it does. I know it’s been cold for a while and nighttime temperatures have been dropping into the low 20s and high teens regularly since Thanksgiving Day, but you don’t measure safe ice in thermometer readings and calendar days; you measure it in linear inches and clarity. Even then, so many variables come into play that strolling onto a frozen lake or pond just because some chart says it’s OK is the intellectual equivalent of playing the New York numbers because Joey Bagadoughnuts gave you a hot tip. I’ve got a tip for you, too: Don’t do it. This is your life we’re talking about here, not a $10 bill. Generally speaking, four inches of new, clear ice is considered the absolute minimum safe thickness for travel on foot. Five inches is generally considered safe for snowmobiles and all-terrain vehicles. Eight to 12 inches is safe for cars or small trucks, but I personally wouldn’t trust it with my truck. These figures are provided courtesy of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, where ice fishing and other related outdoor winter sports are a winter way of life rather than a oncein-while occurence. These people know safe ice. They are also careful to note that these are guidelines, not guarantees. Take strict notice of that little disclaimer.
All that said, regional ice fishing reports are beginning to trickle in. There are rumors of marginally safe ice on the Red Feather Lakes (Dowdy and West Lake), but they are cautionary at best. I contribute my longevity, in part, to being somewhat of a coward, and “marginally” safe ice in my book equates to death by
The ice measures nearly 15 inches thick in this photo on Lake John. Four inches of clear ice is considered minimum for foot traffic, but more is better — obviously.
drowning or “freezation” as my wife likes to call it. I’m not going there. Barnes Meadow Reservoir, Chambers Lake, Joe Wright Reservoir, Lake John, East and North Delaney Buttes Lakes and similar high altitude lakes should have safe ice by now, but if they do, no one seems anxious to let the cat out of the bag. You must remember, though, that fishermen can sometimes be a tightlipped species when it comes to revealing their hot spots. The best way to know for sure if lakes are safe for ice fishing is to drive to your favorite lake and take a measurement yourself. If you don’t see anyone out there, chances are pretty good the ice isn’t safe or, if it is, the word isn’t out yet. In either case, bring a friend, ice picks and a throw rope. Wear a life vest and for crying out loud, be careful.
Miss an issue? Catch up at coloradocountrylife.coop. Click on Outdoors.
PEACE AND QUIET
Tips to block out sounds BY JAMES DULLEY
How do you insulate to reduce the noise in a home?
If it’s normal household sounds you want to block, many standard soundproofing methods are effective. A thicker wall is best to block deep bass vibrations from music or a home theater. You can create that by installing two layers of drywall or using a high-density wallboard. With drywall, nail them tightly together or leave them slightly separated for the benefits of decoupling. Sound travels mostly through the wall studs so the drywall on one side should not be attached to the same wall studs as This wall is soundproofed the drywall on the with sound barrier board adjacent wall. on each side of an insulated wall. The nails through One simple drywall are offset from method is to install the the wall studs to decouple a second layer of the wall. drywall over the existing one. So it stays decoupled, do not screw it into the wall studs or fasten it tightly to the existing drywall. This method also increases the thickness of the wall for blocking bass vibrations. Try staggering the studs on wider headers and footers in the wall cavity. The drywall on each wall is attached to every other stud so there will be no direct path for the sound to travel. Another option is to install thin resilient metal strips over the studs. The new drywall is attached to these strips and not directly to the studs. Strong, soundproofing board made of recycled materials installed over the studs is another option. Screw the drywall or resilient channels to this board.
“He who has not Christmas in his heart will never find it under a tree. ”
For more information on sound-reducing techniques for your home, visit colorado countrylife.coop. Click on Energy Tips.
— Roy L. Smith ColoradoCountryLife.coop December 2012 25
Colorado Rural Electric Association
Be ready when Coloradoâ€™s General Assembly opens its 2013 session in January. Order directories at crea. coop or call 303-455-4111. There will also be a 99Â˘ app that can be download from Itunes.
Every October Colorado Rural Electric Association hosts an Energy Innovations Summit that looks at new products and innovations in Colorado, the country and Visit crea.coop and see PowerPoint informative the world. presentations from the summit.
After 60 years the message is still the same as co-ops work to power communities & empower members. But, now there are more ways to deliver that message.
coloradocountrylife.coop ColoradoCountryLife.coop 26 December 2012
HAPPY HOLIDAYS FROM COLORADO COUNTRY LIFE
"A man only learns in two ways, one by reading, and the other by association with smarter people." â€” Will Rogers ColoradoCountryLife.coop December 2012 27
[classifieds] TO PLACE A CLASSIFIED AD Please type or print your ad on a separate paper. Indicate how many months you would like your ad to run and which month to start. There is a minimum of 12 words at $1.63 per word/month. Be sure to include your full name and address for our records. Check MUST accompany this order or call to pay by credit card. Send your ad to: mail: Colorado Country Life 5400 N. Washington St., Denver, CO 80216 phone: 303-902-7276 fax: 303-455-2807 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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ANTIQUE RESTORATION STUDIO – Antique conservation. Quality craftsmanship since 1974. Bayfield, CO, www.antiqueresdurango.com 970-884-1937. (988-12-12)
RODEO ROOTS to Modern-Day Cowboys is a fine, fun book about rodeo. Great gift! $10. Call 303-4554111 to own one today. (106-12-12)
ANTIQUES ON ACADEMY, Colorado Springs Event Center, 3960 Palmer Park Blvd. Mark your calendar now for this antique sale and show. January 6-7, Saturday 9-5, Sunday 10-4. $3.50 admission. No charge 14 and under. Bring chipped glass for John, glass grinder. Free parking. Café services. Jewelry appraiser available on Saturday. Info: Jo Peterson 719-596-1022 (510-12-12)
(These opportunities have not been investigated by Colorado Country Life.)
BUY, SELL, TRADE, RESTORE antique woodstoves, cookstoves, early gas heaters, always looking for stoves, parts. Bob 303-902-7709 (049-01-13)
LEGITIMATE WORK AT HOME opportunity. No sales, investment, risk. Training/website provided. Weekly/monthly income plus bonuses, benefits. Call Carrie 303579-4207, www.workathomeunited. com/ourabundance (932-02-13)
CHAIR CANING, hand caning, machine caning, fiber rush caning. Pueblo West, 719-547-0723. email@example.com (858-04-13)
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HUGE PRICE REDUCTION — 14 spacious motel rooms, beauty shop (rented), studio apartment, lovely owners’s quarters. Good Business. Many repeat guests. Completely remodeled. Call Betty 719-263-4773 or cell 719-251-1554 (025-02-13)
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FOR SALE COIN BANKS with post office doors in walnut or oak. Makes great Christmas gift. 970-463-5633 (080-12-12) FIREWOOD— BLOCKED (NOT SPLIT) 15-17” seasoned Ponderosa — $8.25 per foot of your pick-up bed, moderate round. (8-foot bed: $66) or $50 per load of limbed not blocked random length pieces. (54” length and longer). You pick up. West Loveland area. Pole Hill Road (18E). 303-665-5749 saddlenot email@example.com (939-12-12) GRASSFED YAK AND BISON MEAT for sale. Delicious and nutritious. Delivery available. Fourth, half, or whole. 720-256-3364 (029-03-13) HEATMOR OUTDOOR FURNACES. Heat your home with wood, coal, used oil, or pellets with a stove that is backed with Limited Lifetime Warranty. Financing available. www.heatmor.com 307-710-6264 firstname.lastname@example.org (058-12-12)
Have yourself a merry, little Christmas.
FREE FREE BOOKS/DVDS. Soon the “Mark of the Beast” will be enforced as Church and State unite! Let the Bible reveal. The Bible Says, POB 99, Lenoir City, TN 37771. email@example.com 888-211-1715. (814-12-12) FREE CURE on people wanting to be rid of stress, guilt, PTSD, suicide, Rapture Cult, and dead church syndrome. Write Dr. Edwin Vrell, 2210 Main St., #304, Longmont, CO 80501 or 303-772-8825 (995-01-13)
HELP WANTED $400 WEEKLY ASSEMBLING PRODUCTS FROM HOME. For free information, send SASE: Home Assembly – CC, Box 450, New Britain, CT 06050-0450.
HOBBIES & CRAFTS BOOKS, PATTERNS, CLASSES, knitting, felting, crocheting, weaving, spinning, natural dye extracts, Jacquard and Gaywool dyes. www. tablerockllamas.com Colorado Springs, 866-495-7747 (791-01-13)
JEWELRY HUNTERS let us cap your prize Elk Teeth for a pendant, sterling silver/ gold. Black Forest Jeweler, 719-4958816 (077-12-12)
MACHINERY & PARTS SAWMILL EXCHANGE: North America’s largest source of used portable sawmills and commercial equipment for woodlot owners and sawmill operations. Over 800 listings. THE place to sell equipment. 800-459-2148 www.sawmill exchange.com . (267-09-13)
HOWARD, COLORADO. Tree covered residential home site. Year round access. Owner finance. 719-276-7294 (050-02-13) WANTED: PROPERTY TO LEASE for hunting, fishing. We can offer landowners numerous benefits. 303-460-0273 (069-12-12)
RELIGION BECOME AN ORDAINED Minister by correspondence study. Founded in 1988. Free info. Ministers for Christ Outreach, PMB 767, 6630 W Cactus, B107, Glendale, AZ 85304. http:// www.ordination.org (441-06-13)
TICKETS NFR & PBR RODEO TICKETS – Las Vegas. All seating levels available. Call 1-888-NFR-rodeo (1-888-6377633) or www.NFR-Rodeo.com. *BBB Member; Since 1990. (912-11-13)
VACATION RENTAL KAUAI VACATION RENTAL, 2bdr, full kitchen. Minutes from beaches. $600/wk. 808-245-6500; makanacrest.com; kauaiweddings.com. (756-05-13) LUSH TROPICAL “BIG ISLAND” VACATION rental. Enjoy the real Hawaii, go online or call. www. vrbo.com/423408 1-808-443-8659. (066-01-13)
WANTED TO BUY
AWARD WINNING LONG-ARM QUILTING Services - Karen Niemi, 303-470-9309, http://creative. stitching.home.comcast.net, firstname.lastname@example.org (846-02-13)
NAVAJO RUGS, old and recent, native baskets, pottery. Tribal Rugs, Salida. 719-539-5363, b_inaz@ hotmail.com (817-04-13) OIL AND GAS MINERALS, royalties, overrides, and working interests. Call John at 303-704-6756 or fax details to 303-292-9226 (082-03-13)
[funny stories] WANTED TO BUY OLD COLORADO LIVESTOCK brand books prior to 1975. Call Wes 303757-8553. (889-02-13)
A BIRD IN THE HAND IS WORTH TWO IN THE BUSH.
OLD COWBOY STUFF–hats, boots, spurs, chaps, Indian rugs, baskets, etc. ANYTHING OLD! Mining & railroad memorabilia, ore carts! We buy whole estates. We’ll come to you! Call 970-759-3455 or 970-5651256. (871-05-13) OLD GAS AND OIL items: Gas pumps, advertising signs, globes, etc. Pieces, parts, etc. considered. Also 1932-34 Ford cars and trucks, parts and pieces, too. Any condition. Brandon, 719-250-5721. (519-11-13) OLD POCKET WATCHES – working or non-working and old repair material. Bob 719-859-4209 email@example.com. (870-12-13) VINTAGE FISHING TACKLE. I buy rods, reels, lures, creels, etc. Call Gary at 970-222-2181 (960-12-12) WANT TO PURCHASE minerals and other oil/gas interests. Send details to: PO Box 13557, Denver, CO 80201. (402-02-13)
My 3-year old son was excited about Christmas. He kept talking about how Santa came to people’s houses and delivered gifts to them. Then he had the chance to see Santa at the mall. After his visit, I asked him again what Santa does. He looked up at me and said, “He sits.” Carol Snyder, Monument
Call Kris at 303-902-7276 for a sure thing. Advertising in Colorado Country Life will improve your sales.
Coming in 2013: Special Advertising Sections
While introducing my fifth-grade class to the new vocabulary for the day’s reading selection, Alex waved his hand so enthusiastically it seemed to helicopter him out of his seat. “Call on me, call on me, I know that word!” he exclaimed. “OK, what do you think ‘parson’ means?” I asked. “Parson is a color!” Since Alex responded with such confidence in his answer, I had to pursue it. “What color is it?” “I’m not positive, but I know it’s a shade of brown. Maybe a kind of tan.” You cannot correct a misconception unless you know where it came from, so I asked, “How do you know that?” “Because of the song … ‘In the meadow we can build a snowman, then pretend that he is Parson Brown ….’” Marie Hall, Colorado Springs
A group of chess enthusiasts checked into a hotel and were standing in the lobby discussing their recent tournament victories. After an hour, the hotel manager came out of the office and asked them to disperse. “But, why?” asked one of the enthusiasts. The manager responded, “Because I can’t stand chess nuts boasting in an open foyer.” Anonymous
After a weekend visiting my parents, I received a text from my sister. It said, “Dad is not playing with a full deck and mom is one fry short of a Happy Meal.” My response: “That’s odd. When I got back home, I found an ace up my sleeve and a fry at the bottom of my purse! LOL” Julie Arana, Walsh
To advertise in a special section call Kris 303-902-7276.
We pay $15 to each person who submits a funny story that’s printed in the magazine. At the end of the year, we draw one name from those submitting jokes and that person will receive $150. This year Patty Spellman of Yuma is the winner. Send your 2013 stories to Colorado Country Life, 5400 N. Washington St., Denver, CO 80216 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Don’t forget to include your mailing address, so we can send you a check. ColoradoCountryLife.coop December 2012 29
Chicken Noodle Soup in a
Chocolate Chip Cookies in a
INGREDIENTS 1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour 3/4 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 cup granulated sugar 1/2 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips 1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans Sift together the flour and baking soda, then place in the bottom of a 1-quart glass mason jar. Tamp down the flour so it is packed in firmly. Add the rest of the ingredients in this order, making sure to pack down each ingredient as you add it: granulated sugar, brown sugar, chocolate chips, chopped nuts. Screw the lid on the jar and attach the following recipe:
1/4 cup red lentils 2 tablespoons dried onion flakes 1 1/2 tablespoons chicken bouillon granules 1/2 teaspoon dried dill weed or dill seed 1/8 teaspoon celery seed 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder 1 cup medium egg noodles 1 bay leaf Layer ingredients, from the bottom, in the order they are listed in a 1/2 quart (2 cup) glass jar. Adorn jar with decorations, if desired. Attach the following recipe:
Chicken Noodle Soup Contents of jar 1/2 cup mixed vegetables 2 cups cooked, diced chicken
In a large saucepan, bring 8 cups of water to a boil. Stir in soup mix from jar. Cover, reduce heat and simmer for 25 minutes. Remove bay leaf and stir in 1/2 cup mixed vegetables and 2 cups of cooked, diced chicken. Simmer for 5 minutes, until vegetables are tender and chicken is heated.
Chocolate Chip Cookies Contents of jar 3/4 cup butter, softened 1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Empty the contents of the jar into a medium bowl. In a large bowl beat together butter, eggs and vanilla until creamy. Gradually stir in dry ingredients. Drop by tablespoons onto an ungreased cookie sheet and bake 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool for 1 minute, then remove the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 weeks. Makes 24 cookies.
ColoradoCountryLife.coop 30 December 2012
Go to coloradocountrylife.coop and find more handmade gift ideas. Click on Discoveries to find edible body scrub, cranberry-walnut quick bread mix, espresso brownie mix, monster cookie mix and spiced hot chocolate mix. You can also download labels with the instructions for making the mixes. Have fun with these creative concoctions.