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July 11, 2012 Members of the Wheat and Stem families enjoy a late breakfast at Grandmother’s in Woodland Park. Undaunted by news of the Waldo Canyon Fire, some (facing the camera) drove in from Arkansas, keeping to their plans for a July holiday with family. Photo by Pat Hill

Media implies Colorado is closed Tourists express fear for safety By Pat Hill It’s déjà vu all over again. During the Hayman Fire of June 2002, then-Gov. Bill Owens declared that the state was burning up, effectively canceling tourist season for that summer. In Woodland Park, Debbie Miller, president of the city’s chamber of commerce, is having economic heartburn over the same kind of reports about the Waldo Canyon Fire, only this time it’s the media rather than the governor. “The way the national media put their frame clips together it looked like there was no way possible for Colorado to be open,” Miller said. As a result of the misinformation, Miller joined the Pikes Peak Region Business Recovery Team and is part of the communication division. “We are looking at what we can do for recovery and have sent an assessment survey to the businesses,” she said. “We’ll be looking at social media. If you think about it,

it’s really a spinoff of the Gulf oil spill.” As a result of the media exposure, lodging establishments are experiencing a flurry of cancellations, as tourists express fear about their safety, Miller said. “I’ve told our lodging people to have their customers call us. We’ll address every fear they have,” she said. With fear the big factor in cancellations in Teller County, the business community is taking a proactive part in spreading a positive message. “Whether it’s by talking to people on the phone or scrawling across the weather channel, we want to tell people that Woodland Park is open,” Miller said. “If you can put those fears at rest it’s personal capital you’re investing.” However, with traffic buzzing along the city July 2, the first full day U.S. 24 was open from Colorado Springs, Miller is more optimistic. “We have to look at the positive side of things, build on that, reach out to those loyal customers,” she said. “The weeks after the fire are crucial for area businesses. And now we just have to get right back on track.”

SO MUCH INSIDE THE COURIER VIEW THIS WEEK THE GMF fire chief urges people to keep their bags packed, marshal and DOW warn of influx of bears. Page 4

Kleiner remembered By Norma Engelberg and Pat Hill and

As a cloud of sorrow and loss hangs over the people of Woodland Park, the friends of Richard “Richy” Kleiner take comfort in remembering the active veteran. Kleiner, 63, and three Boy Scouts were killed in a car accident June 30 in Wyoming while, at the same time, the Waldo Canyon Fire continued to pose a threat to Ute Pass. In a week of terror, the four deaths were a stunning blow. Kleiner was the Scouts’ troop Richard “Richy” Kleiner, center, spent time with area veterans leader in Woodland Park. “He trea- at the McCandless State Veterans Nursing Home in Florience. sured that, the boys were very im- Visting the elderly was just one of Kleiner’s selfless acts of portant to him,” said Chuck Gardner, kindness. Kleiner was killed in an accident in Wyoming June commander of American Legion 30. Courtesy photo Post #1980. “He was very proud of being a Scoutmaster and was also getting Roger Chilcoat. “He was a people person involved with the Eagle Scouts.” and a devout Jew who went to his synaService officer for the Legion in Wood- gogue in Denver every Saturday. He was land Park, Kleiner helped ease burdens helping my son understand Hebrew and for families in times of crisis while un- the Jewish religion.” earthing benefits for area veterans. “Richy Dependable, too, added Bartol. “If you always wanted to know how he could get asked him to do something, you could just more for his veterans,” said Mike Bartol, assume it would get done,” he said. “That’s veterans’ service officer for Teller County. the kind of guy he was.” With his passion for serving the LeRichard Buford served with Kleiner in gion, Kleiner took part in every activity. 2002 on the carrier USS Abraham Lincoln “He couldn’t understand why more peo- and considered him to be his best friend. ple wouldn’t help out when we had fund“Rich was a remarkable man,” said raisers,” Gardner said. Buford, in a phone call from Bellingham, Kleiner’s resume provides insight into Wash. “He had ultimate respect for the the man. Former police officer in New uniform and for his country. He was a York City, chief petty officer for the U.S. `shipmate’ in every sense of the word and Navy and intelligence specialist for the a friend to everyone on the ship regardless Naval Reserve, where, coincidentally, Bar- of their pay grade.” tol was his instructor, Kleiner was recently Devoted to the Navy, Kleiner stayed in a case worker with the Teller County De- touch with his former shipmates, Buford partment of Social Services. said. “Rich has gone on to his next comAs well, he was the Worshipful Mas- mand. God is his commanding officer and ter for the Masons. “He was jolly, robust, he is reporting for duty. I know he was a kind, straightforward,” said fellow Mason blessing to your community.”

Local youths test their athletic skills Special to the Courier Every year Woodland Park Parks and Recreation hosts skill challenges that give local youths a showcase for a variety of athletic skills.

Hershey’s Track and Field Meet

TOWN PLANS to go all out with party and fundraiser for the Green Mountain Falls/Chipita Park firefighters. Page 5 BUTTE THEATER brings “My Fair Lady” to the Cripple Creek stage. Page 13

FIRST-EVER WOODLAND Park Cemetery Crawl brings historic city characters to life. Page 11

WOODLAND PARK celebrates Independence and a safe return home after evacuation. Page 10

Forty-four youths took part in this year’s Hershey’s Track and Field Meet, hosted by The City of Woodland Park Parks & Recreation Department at the Woodland Park High School track. We would like to thank the following Hershey’s Track and Field Sponsors: Absolute Workout, Teller County Waste and Chulick & Kozleski, LLP. The following are the top 3 winners in each age group for the Hershey’s Track Meet. Girls Standings: Ages 9-10 50 Meter Dash: Dacotah Simonis. 100 Meter Dash: Dacotah Simonis. Standing Long Jump: Casey White. Softball Throw: Dakota Simonis, Casey White. Ages 11-12 100 Meter Dash: Katelynn Winstead, Libby Blacklock, Elly Huck. 200 Meter Dash: Hanna Chaja, Mylea Harangozo, Emily Estep. 400 Meter Dash: Hanna Chaja, Kourtney Cox, Mylea Haranagozo.

800 Meter Run: Libby Blacklock, Katelynn Winstead, Vivian Kozelka Standing Long Jump: Hanna Chaja, Greta Bachura, Meadow Spencer. Softball Throw: Libby Blacklock, Katelynn Winstead, Elly Huck. Ages 13-14 100 Meter Dash: Lannan Abbott, Kalie Winstead, Madison Dixon. 200 Meter Dash: Lannan Abbott, Kalie Winstead. 800 Meter Run: Madison Dixon, Gabriella Cotton. Standing Long Jump: Lannan Abbott, . Softball Throw: Kalie Winstead, Madison Dixon, Gabriella Cotton. Boys Standings: Ages 9-10 50 Meter Dash: Vaughn Henggeler, Mathew Harangozo, Colton Simonis. 100 Meter Dash: Jordan Huisman, Colin Kucera, Braden Roskam. 200 Meter Dash: Brisco Hudson, Parker Smith, Colin Kucera. 400 Meter Dash: Parker Smith, Brisco Hudson, Bryson Cox. Standing Long Jump: Parker Smith, Braden Roskam, Colin Kucera. Softball Throw: Colton Simonis, Brisco Hudson, Bryson Cox. Ages 11-12 100 Meter Dash: Gabriel Abbott, Caleb Maine, James Costello. Skills continues on page 3

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