MyWindsor January 2023

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Prep athletes shape the Windsor community’s destiny

Windsor’s only flower shop committed to making connections with customers


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JANUARY 2023 | mywindsor | 3 Happy New Year! For the January edition of MyWindsor, we turned to local leaders Mayor Paul Rennemeyer, Windsor Police Chief Rick Klimek and Windsor Severance Fire Rescue Chief Kris Kazian to learn about what the community can expect to see in 2023 and what achievements the town reached in 2022. JANUARY 2023 Prep athletes shape the Windsor community’s destiny FACES OF THE FUTURE BIZ411 LOCAL WINDSOR NEWS Monthly Town Calendar | Hometown Heroes GUIDING YOU THROUGH THE BEST OF WINDSOR Leadership PORTRAITS IN Windsor’s only flower shop committed to making connections with customers PLUS For all editorial, advertising and circulation inquiries, call 970.352.0211. Send editorial-related comments and story ideas to: . For advertising inquiries contact Advertising at Published by Prairie Mountain Media, publisher of The Greeley Tribune. Managing Editor Tamara Markard Graphic Designer Layne Petersen Contributing Writers And Photographers Ann Delaney, Bobby Fernandez, Morgan McKenzie, Alex McIntyre, Tamara Markard MYWINDSOR MAGAZINE PO Box 337228, Greeley, CO 80633-7228 OnTheCover 3616 W 10TH SvTREET, GREELE Y, CO. 80634 970.378.0240 • w w w.jt-f $3 OFF $30 E xpires 1/ 31/ 2 3 C annot be combined with any other of fer s or promos $20 Self Ser ve Dog Wash! E xpires 1/ 31/ 2 3 C annot be combined with any other of fer s or promos


Parent confronts Weld RE-4 with concerns about racism and bullying in schools


Location for new Windsor charter school set


Windsor Police Department Commander Aaron Lopez adds graduate of FBI National Academy to his resume


Update on Windsor-Severance Library closure during renovation project


Town of Windsor Public Works receives accolades for its use of modern technology in infrastructure projects


Town of Windsor HOST Program seeks volunteers


ABC Child Development Centers and Bright School-Age Centers set the bar high


Take on the New Year by getting out and about in Windsor at these fun events


The Hometown Hero series kicks off with North Range Behavioral Health counselor Miranda Jankowski and how she is working to promote mental health awareness in Windsor

BIZ 411

From funerals to weddings and everything in between, The Li’l Flower Shop, provides top-notch service and products to customers in and around Windsor


Learn about where Windsor is going in 2023, as well as how far it has come in the past year, from three local leaders


Windsor Parks, Recreation and Culture bids adieu to its mortgage with early payoff


Windsor student athletes John Kenny and Taylor Eskew making a name for themselves in sports and academics

4 | mywindsor | JANUARY 2023
| JANUARY 2023 Inside
08 Quality Flowers and Amazing Arrangements
FINAL THOUGHT Getting ahead 06 08 10 14 16 18 22 24 25 26 27 28 32 34 24

Once again, we are closing the book on one year and preparing to fill in the blank pages of another.

While the pages for 2023 are yet to be written, it’s pretty much a guarantee that they will be filled with life changes and new opportunities.

For me, the New Year begins with the opportunity to take on the position of managing editor of MyWindsor magazine.

I am excited for this new opportunity to share stories and information as well as create con-

nections and contacts within the community.

The MyWindsor magazine is kicking off 2023 with its Leadership edition.

We sat down with Mayor Paul Rennemeyer, Windsor-Severance Fire Rescue Chief Kris Kazian and Windsor Police Chief Rick Klimek to talk about some of the highlights of 2022 as well as share some goals the three have for 2023.

As you flip through the magazine, you will notice some new content such as Biz 411, Hometown Hero, Prep sport athlete features and Top Picks, as well as former favorites like the community event calendar and advertiser directory.

Readers can expect to see more local faces on magazine covers

as we share stories from different community members, including town leaders, business owners, education professionals and youth.

Do you have a story idea or suggestion? Is there a specific person or business that should be recognized? Is there an issue or concern that the community should be aware of?

Let me know by reaching out to me at tmarkard@greeleytribune .com.

MyWindsor is your magazine about your community, so let’s work together to showcase what makes Windsor unique.



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North Range Behavioral Health’s


Whether it’s a teacher who inspires students to be their best, a kid who shovels the driveway for their elderly neighbors or a company that donates services, time and products to the community, there’s no shortage of local heroes in our community.

MyWindsor’s Hometown Hero feature is a way to recognize and thank the people and companies who strive to make our community better through their time, talents, generosity and kindness.

Behavioral Health’s Windsor center.

Jankowski, who has worked with North Range for a little more than two years, has been interested in counseling since a young age.

Do you know a person, business or organization that would make a great story for the Hometown Hero feature? Then send their name and contact information to Tamara Markard at tmarkard@

For the first Hometown Hero feature, MyWindsor would like to highlight the work of Miranda Jankowski, a behavioral health counselor at North Range

“I was always really interested in why people do what they do. Initially that started out with more of a fascination regarding the criminal justice system,” she explained. “Through school, continued education and experiences, I really just started to want to be involved at the community level.”

While Jankowski is trained in a variety of different mental health issues, she enjoys working with adolescents and people who have experienced trauma in their life.

“I see people who experienced a lot of abuse growing up, a lot of people who have suffered abuse in relationships and people who experience anxiety and depression as a result of that,” Jankowski said.

6 | mywindsor | JANUARY 2023 Hometown Heroes
Assigning certain foods moral status can be harmful.
Miranda Jankowski is a behavioral health counselor at North Range Behavioral Health’s Windsor center. TAMARA MARKARD

When people grasp that “ah-ha moment” and make the connection of how something has been impacting them is just one of the things that Jankowski enjoys most in her work as a counselor.

“Having an opportunity to be a person to another person, is more of what I mean,” she said. “Really getting that opportunity to not only be one of those people talking about it, but getting that opportunity to just sit with someone and their feelings. It’s like, ‘yep, I see you for who you are and I’m still here’.”

Jankowski takes care of her own mental health by spending time with family and friends, “who refill her cup,” having frequent check-ins with her supervisor, reading, exercising, meditation and crocheting.

“I don’t go too long without seeing friends or talking about whatever it is in my life that is going on and making sure I am holding that space with other people,” she said. “It gets really easy to push everything down, so I really try to be reflective on what I feel like my emotions are telling me.”

As a community behavioral health provider and advocate for mental health care, Jankowski would like to see more care opportunities become available to people of all ages.

“We need to make sure our net is spread wide enough to catch as many people in the cracks that we can. I would love to see more mental health services in the schools,” she said. “It should be just as normal to go see a therapist as it is to go see a doctor when you are sick.”

If you or someone you know is struggling with a behavioral health emergency, call at (844) 493-8255 or call or text the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline at 988.

To learn more about North Range Behavioral Health, services and programs offered as well as the different locations in Weld County go to www.

JANUARY 2023 | mywindsor | 7
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Each month MyWindsor highlights a local business to share what services and products it offers the community.

From plumbers to pet shops and breweries to hardware stores, and everything in between, every business plays a part in the success of a community.

Do you know of a business that would be a great candidate for the Biz 411 feature?

Then send the name of the business and any contact information to Tamara Markard at tmarkard@

Flower Li’l Shop


Kicking off the first edition of the Biz 411 column for 2023 is the Li’l Flower Shop.

Li’l Flower Shop first opened its doors in Windsor in 1971. While the main focus of the shop was to provide quality flowers and amazing arrangements to customers within and around the town, providing top-notch service was also important to shop owners.

The shop moved into its new

location at 1295 Main St., Unit 4, on Sept. 15. Before the move, the shop was housed for more than 20 years at 417 Main St.

“The shop is a little smaller and our showroom is a lot smaller, but we love it here,” shop manager Lesa Harkness said.

As the only flower shop in Windsor, the staff prides themselves on being able to offer products and personal service that customers

8 | mywindsor | JANUARY 2023
Biz 411
The Li’l Flower Shop in Windsor carries a variety of fresh-cut flowers, plants and other gifts. ARTICLE AND PHOTOS BY TAMARA MARKARD

won’t typically find at large retail stores, like Target, Safeway and Sam’s Club.

“We accommodate our customers with what they need. If someone comes in and says, ‘I only have $20, but I really want to send something,’ we will make it happen,” said designer Christine Fries.

The shop also is committed to making customers’ visions for arrangements into reality.

“We had a customer who wanted a teddy bear made from flowers with a flower halo on it, hugging another flower arrangement with lights in it,” Fries said, laughing. “And we did it.”

The shop has a walk-in flower refrigerator where arrangements of all sizes and colors are ready and waiting to be plucked off the shelf to celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, new baby or “just because.”

Customers can order custom arrangements for any kind of occasion, including weddings, funerals and company parties.

“Proms, daddy-daughter dances, mother-son dances; it all keeps us really busy,” Harness said.

In addition to flowers and plants, the shop also sells gourmet and fruit baskets, silk flowers and plants, chocolates and greeting cards as well as a variety of gift and home décor items.

When it comes to placing orders for holidays “the sooner the better.”

For Valentines Day, Harkness suggests getting orders in by Feb. 1, however, the shop will have prearranged pieces for last minute grab-and-go gifts.

JANUARY 2023 | mywindsor | 9
Li’l Flower Shop, 1295 Main St., #4 • Hours: 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, closed Sunday • Contact: (970) 686-2400 • Website: The shop offers delivery, pick-up and in-store shopping. Pre-arranged pieces are available for sale and the shops takes orders for custom arrangements of all sizes and colors. THE 411
The Li’l Flower Shop in Windsor carries a variety of fresh-cut flowers, plants and other gifts.


As we bid adieu to 2022 and welcome 2023, many of us are pondering what the New Year will hold for us personally. For the leaders of our community, not only do they have the task of setting goals for themselves, but also creating goals for the town. And while planning for the future is important, so is taking time to celebrate successes of the past.

MyWindsor sat down with Mayor Paul Rennemeyer, Windsor Police Chief Rick Klimek and Windsor Severance Fire Rescue Chief Kris Kazian to talk about the town’s successes in 2022 and what community members and business owners can expect in 2023.


As mayor of Windsor, Paul Rennemeyer is the “face” of the town council, appearing at numerous events and functions throughout the year. It’s also part of the mayor’s job to help the town meet and achieve its goals, fostering growth and productivity within the community.

“We have a whole host of different stuff coming up in the next year,” Rennemeyer said.

It seems that

no matter the size of a city or town, parking is always an issue and Windsor is no exception.

“We have secured about 150 new parking spots in our downtown,” Rennemeyer said. “Parking is at a premium in downtown and parking has been a hot topic in Windsor.”

The town worked with local business owners to sign leases and agreements along the north and south sides of Main Street to utilize their

existing parking behind businesses for public parking in the evenings and weekends.

Part of the agreement between the town and the businesses is that Windsor will fix up the existing parking lot — paving, fixing pot holes and adding striping — as well as adding signage about the public parking opportunities.

“Those shared use agreements with a lot of the businesses downtown took effect Jan. 1,” Rennemeyer said.

In addition to the shared use agreements, the town budgeted $1 million dollars to be used to acquire land for parking, Rennemeyer said. This year the town made two “strategic purchases” with around $800,000 of the money.

“Both are right downtown on the northside of Main Street,” Rennemeyer said.

Currently, both lots have structures on them that will be demolished, the mayor explained.

“That work is probably going to happen in 2023. Both lots will be cleaned up, graded, blacktopped and stripped,” Rennemeyer said. “So, those can go into effect next year.”

Both lots will add nearly 100

10 | mywindsor | JANUARY 2023
Town of Windsor Mayor Paul Rennemeyer. (Courtesy/Paul Rennemeyer)
Local leaders celebrate the successes of 2022 with more to come in 2023 ALEX MCINTYRE

new parking spots to the area over the New Year.

In November, voters passed the Open Space and Trails Sales Tax of 0.25% which began Jan. 1. The additional 0.25% will take the town’s sales tax from 3.95% to 4.20%.

The additional 0.25% will be used to purchase open space land to increase public recreation opportunities, better define the town’s borders and promote open space to conserve wildlife habitats.

While the town does have its eye on some specific pieces of land, the locations have not been disclosed publicly, and Rennemeyer expects that the town won’t be able to make an offer on the land until around 2025 or so when the fund has built up some money.

“Quite honestly, I don’t even know where the properties are but I know that staff has been working to identify potential properties,” Rennemeyer said. “The desire with the Open Space and Trails is that it would be buffer areas. So it would be parcels to give us some buffer from Timnath, or Loveland, or Greeley or Severance.”

Money from the sales tax will not be used for eminent domain purchases of land, Rennemeyer said. Parcels up for consideration will be from interested sellers only.

“We have parcels that we will be able to buy at some point. But if there comes a day where there is no strategic land interest for us to pursue, the town board can vote to sunset that tax,” Rennemeyer added. “It doesn’t take a vote from the people to end it. And it’s all or nothing; we can’t say ‘now we only have to collect 0.15 instead of 0.25.’”

Some of the things the community can look forward to in 2023 are more community art projects, new Chamber of Commerce hosted/sponsored special events and the continued development of the downtown area.

“Our downtown, other than the restaurants, seems to close between five and six each night and that doesn’t work well as far

as vibrancy of your downtown,” Rennemeyer said. “Our redevelopment in downtown isn’t just about trying to increase the sales tax or property tax to the town. It’s mostly designed to give more life to our downtown so that all businesses benefit from that.”


Along with the town council, the Windsor Police Department and Chief Rick Klimek had several successes from 2022 to celebrate.

The department added more female officers to its staff, bringing the total of women serving community to 13.

“We have a rather large population of women on the force and they are really good gals. They are doing a wonderful job and we are proud of that,” Klimek said.

The department is also in the process of bringing on two K-9 units onboard. Officer Marshal Allen and his K9 partner Xaros, a Belgian Malinois, along with Officer Clara Steingart and her K9 partner Zuma, a German Shepard, are scheduled to attend the K9 academy in January. Both dogs will be trained in narcotics detection and criminal apprehension.

“We went through a selection process and one of our officers had been a K9 officer in Idaho before coming down and joining us, so he took on one of those roles,” Klimek said. “And the other one is new to the K9 business as far as law enforcement goes.”

The addition of the K9 units will provide the department with a “great tool for not only narcotics detection, but for building


“It creates a safer environment for the officers and reduces a possible conflict,” Klimek explained. “You don’t as often have to go hands-on with people.”

The department is also pleased to announce that Commander Aaron Lopez graduated from the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Va. The 11-week academy consisted of advanced communication, leadership and fitness training.

“He’s the first officer from Windsor to attend. We were offered that about two years ago,” Klimek said. “This will give us the ability to reach out to other agencies and experts around the state and country. It will bring in a lot of additional training and skill sets.”

The community can expect to see the addition of two-wheeled patrols in 2023 as the department brings on some motorcycle officers.

The motorcycle patrol will help with the heavy traffic on Main Street, Klimek said.

Klimek and co. are also in the process of designing a new police department for the community.

The department’s current building, located at 200 N. 11th St.,  was constructed in 2010 and at that time was designed to last 25 years or longer. However, with the quick and continued growth of the town, the department has had to increase staff numbers, thus outgrowing their britches, so to speak.

“We are completely out of space here. We have converted storage rooms into offices and the training room has become an office for the investigators,” Klimek said. “We’ve

JANUARY 2023 | mywindsor | 11
Windsor Chief of Police Rick Klimek stands for a portrait at the Windsor Police Department in Windsor Dec. 2, 2022. (Alex McIntyre/Staff Photographer)

converted just about every usable space in the building to be occupied by people.”

The new building will be located north of the Public Works building at 922 N. 15th St. Construction on the new department is expected to be completed in around 2025.

“The costs of construction are very high so we are trying to work around maximizing what we have,” Klimek said. “This building will be used by other departments within the community.”

Building relationships within the community through attendance at events is a top priority for the department in 2023.

“We began a process with North Range for co-responders and this year we added one co-responder and hopefully will be adding a second in 2023,” Klimek said. “The co-responders have been a great benefit.”

Klimek is also dedicated to “upping the skillsets” of department staff through continued education and training, specifically investigations and cyber crimes.

“Technology is taking over law enforcement like everything else,” Klimek said. “We are trying to stay abreast of that, so that’s a big thing.”


As the police department looks forward to the construction of a new home, the Windsor Severance Fire Rescue opened the doors to a new fire station in 2022.

On Sept. 11, Chief Kris Kazian, community members and leaders celebrated the dedication of the fire rescue’s newest location at 1350 New Liberty Road.

“Seeing that come to fruition is a huge accomplishment for our organization,” Kazian said. “That has certainly allowed us to serve our growing community better with that added resource.”

The 16,600-square-foot facility sits on nearly 13 acres and encompasses state-of-the-art training and work features.

Despite just opening a new sta-

tion, Kazian and fellow fire rescue leaders will be keeping their eyes out for additional pieces of property for future stations.

“The time to maybe make that happen is now. We have the financial resources to do that,” he said.

The fire rescue also kicked off its 2022-24 Strategic Plan, which was created with input from community and internal stakeholders.

The plan focuses on six areas— planning and readiness, organizational development, health and wellness, community risk reduction, partnerships and relationships, and technology and data.

The fire rescue will be adding a new engine to its fleet in 2023 and has an order for another one to be delivered in 2025.

“It takes about four months to build but the way the supply chain is now, it’s taking 36 months to get it,” Kazian said. “It’s really bizarre to think about buying a fire truck at the end of 2022 because we need it in 2025 or 2026.”

Even the simplest of items to produce, like hoses, has been an issue when it comes to ordering.

“We just bought hoses and it took seven months to get them. There are no chips in a hose. Whether the people aren’t at the factory to build them, or they can’t get the materials, or whatever it is, everything is delayed,” Kazian said. “I’ve been a fire chief for 10 years and I’ve never seen anything like this.”

The department will also be facing its first re-accreditation for its international accreditation. The

fire rescue is one of only 300 internationally accredited fire services in the world.

“Being re-accredited will be a big deal for us based on the level of which it acknowledges our operation,” Kazian explained. “It just validates what we do. It means we do what we say we do and we meet certain benchmarks and criteria. It takes a lot of work.”

As the town of Windsor continues to grow, so will the fire rescue staff.

Like many companies and businesses, recruiting candidates has been a challenge for the department.

“We are turning over rocks, we are launching balloons, it’s just not the same,” Kazian said. “There is a competitive nature to it, but it’s just not the same; it’s a different dynamic.”

As Kazian heads into his fifth season of being the fire chief, some of his personal goals for the upcoming year is to “really understand the community’s needs” and continue to build relationships with other fire departments like Greeley and the Front Range, Johnstown and Milliken as well as how the department can provide “good government” through enhanced services.

“I think hitting my fifth year here now really gives me the foundation to understand all of the working components to set that in motion and begin to see how that could play out over the next five to 10 years,” Kazian said. “I really want to set those foundations, create those opportunities and really establish a sustainable model for what the future looks like in Windsor-Severance.”

12 | mywindsor | JANUARY
Windsor Severance Fire Rescue Fire Chief Kris Kazian stands for a portrait at Windsor Severance Fire Rescue Station 1 in Windsor Dec. 1, 2022. (Alex McIntyre/Staff Photographer)
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Starting Out In The BLACK

Windsor Parks, Recreation and Culture will be starting the New Year off financially in the black as the center announced that it has paid off the mortgage on the building’s expansion loan.

“We are fortunate to be able to pay off the mortgage early,” Deputy Director of Parks, Recreation & Culture Tara Fotsch said. “Because of the sales tax, we looked at our stuff this fall and decided that by December we will have enough money in the bank to pay off the existing loan.”

The early payoff of the mortgage will also put some change back into the pockets of shoppers and business owners.

“Starting the first of the year, 0.55 of the original sales tax, which was 0.95, will be retired,” Windsor mayor Paul Rennemeyer said. “It’s because the taxpayers believe in this community that they said, ‘Go for it. Let’s do it to make this facility better.’”

“And on the other side of it, we paid it off nine years early.”

The early payoff resulted in a savings of around $1.5 million,

Rennemeyer said.

The remaining 0.40 of the sales tax will be used to cover the center’s operational and maintenance expenses.

“It was a 15-year note and we are six years in,” said town manager Shane Hale. “Ever since I’ve been here, the town board always has asked the question, ‘what can we pay off early?’”

It was late September/early October when the finance department realized the town had the ability to pay off the loan well before the final payment was due.

“The rec center is back to prepandemic levels, we’ve had a lot of people using the facility again and a lot of really strong sales tax growth,” Hale said. “When we discovered it, I gave the mayor the

14 | mywindsor | JANUARY 2023 Finance
The Windsor Community Recreation Center, 250 11th St., hosts a variety of classes, programs and events year around for community members of all ages. Windsor Parks, Recreation & Culture announced the early payoff of the rec center’s expansion loan. Windsor Community Recreation Center bids early adieu to its mortgage

heads up and he was like, ‘let’s pay it off today.’ So it was one of those things that I knew would be really well-received by the board.”

To celebrate the town’s financial achievement, the center hosted a Burn the Mortgage celebration Dec. 1.

Attendees gathered outside the

center to roast marshmallows and make s’mores. During the event, Rennemeyer ceremoniously burned a large scroll emblazoned with the word, “mortgage” on it.

“This is a big occasion and it’s really exciting we are at this point. This whole facility is now debtfree,” Rennemeyer said to the

The 85,000-square-foot facility boasts two gymnasiums, multiple fitness rooms, an indoor aquatics center and other amenities.

crowd. “What’s really an honor is that six years ago about right now we were actually cutting the ribbon on the part of the faculty that created the sales tax to cover the bond that we took out.”

The Windsor Community Recreation Center, 250 11th St., hosts a variety of classes, programs and events all year for community members of all ages to partake in.

The 85,000-square-foot facility boasts two gymnasiums, multiple fitness rooms, an indoor aquatics center and other amenities.

To learn more about the Windsor Community Recreation Center, upcoming classes and programs or admission fees, go to

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The future of a community lies in its youth. As elders pass on and leadership roles are handed down to the next generation, it’s the young that will shape the future of a community as well as the nation.

Some of these young men and women are

athletes and musicians, while others are making waves in the world of academics and community service. No matter what their achievements, they all help shape our community one way or another. Each month, MyWindsor will feature two students from Windsor high schools for

the Faces of the Future feature.

If you know of a high school student that would be a good candidate for the Faces of the Future feature, send their name and contact information to Tamara Markard at tmarkard@

16 | mywindsor | JANUARY 2023 Colorado News | WINDSOR YOUTH
From athletes and musicians to class presidents and stand-out scholars, the youth of Windsor play an important part in the future of the community.


Year in school: Senior What sport(s) do you play?: Wrestling and baseball

How did you get involved in sports? My dad got me involved with wrestling when I was five years old and I started playing baseball when I was seven.

Favorite sports memory: My favorite sports memory was


Year in school: Senior What sport(s) do you play?: Swimming and diving

How did you get involved in sports? My parents have always encouraged outdoor activities, so when I was about five years old I joined my first swim team — the Rebels Summer Swim League. My experience that summer set a large spark of passion for my sport and was the basis for my many following swimming seasons. However, without my sister, I likely would not be competing today. I always looked up to her, as she never gave up on the activities that she loved, even when they were really difficult or she got hurt. It was also her role model leader skills as captain of the basketball team that inspired me to want to do the same thing for my team. Nowadays I can’t even imagine leaving my sport. This

when we won state as a team in wrestling my freshman year.

Biggest goal you still want to accomplish in sports: Winning a state title this year.

Favorite school subject: Statistics and college algebra. Career aspirations: To get my degree in either sports medicine or business management while being a collegiate wrestler.

women enjoy the same, and if I hadn’t stayed involved in my sport, I wouldn’t have had the chance to see that.

Favorite sports memory: The first time I swam the 200 freestyle. I wanted to try something new and kind of uncommon so that I could make it to the finals in our conference. The feeling of adrenaline and dopamine during that swim was different from all of my other events that I have swam before. My time wasn’t the best, but it eventually got much better which was also remarkable to see. However, even with a slower time, that first swim was the reason why I lettered my freshman year and it was a really impactful moment for my swim career because it is now my favorite event.

Biggest goal you still want to accomplish in sports: I would love to swim more in college. My experience with high school swimming has been incredible and I want to carry that on for the rest of my life. Even if I am not necessarily on a D1 team, I would be just as content swimming for the local club.

year, I have the privilege of serving as a captain of some of the most fun, kind and determined people I have ever swam with. My four years of swimming have been filled with amazing experiences, and I would give anything to watch these

Favorite school subject? Physics.

Career aspirations: I am hoping to become an Astrophysicist with a background in Artificial Intelligence engineering.

JANUARY 2023 | mywindsor | 17
Windsor’s John Kenney, right, grapples with Erie’s Noah Lopez during the second day of the 2021 Jimmy John’s Northern Colorado Christmas Tournament in Bank of Colorado Arena at the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley, Dec. 18, 2021. Windsor’s Taylor Eskew swims butterfly at the Windsor Wizards girls swim practice at Windsor High School in Windsor, Dec. 15, 2022.

Weld RE-4 School District parent: Children experience


‘every single year’ at district schools

AWeld RE-4 School District parent recently questioned the culture in district schools because of what she says is the racism, bullying, intimidation and “hateful words and actions” her children have experienced since elementary school.

Hava Simmons, a Severance resident, spoke to the Weld RE-4 board of education Nov. 14, detailing some of what her biracial children have encountered, including racial slurs and students dressing as monkeys.

One of her children attends Windsor High School, and the other attends Windsor Middle School.

Simmons said she spoke to the board of education after she felt the district hadn’t adequately addressed her concerns about an October incident at the middle school she described as “horrifying.” In a conversation with Superintendent Michelle Scallon this fall, Simmons told

Scallon of her plans to address the board and received encouragement from the superintendent.

In April, during Simmons’ son’s freshman year at Windsor High, he learned his picture had been posted on Snapchat, a multimedia message platform. The photo appeared with a racial slur written across his face, Simmons told the board.

Simmons’ daughter in late October learned middle school classmates planned to dress as monkeys for Halloween. Simmons told the school board the students are in seventh grade and use racial slurs to refer to other students.

“The fact that it continues at every step of their learning journey leads me to believe that they are much more than singular words,” Simmons told the board. “These reflect a concerning culture within the district that allows for students to feel comfortable using such hateful terminology without a second thought or concern for consequences.”

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| DISTRICT RE-4 Education

Simmons wrote an email to district and school leaders the previous evening expressing her concern over what she heard about the students’ plans. She described the students as “popular kids.”

The middle school students followed through on their plans to dress as monkeys for Halloween, arriving at school Oct. 31 in costumes, Simmons said.

On the evening of Oct. 31, Simmons wrote an email to Scallon, Windsor Middle School principal Elizabeth Urich and Windsor Middle School assistant principal James Osborn about the students’ costumes.

Simmons expressed concern and worry over the “displays of overt racism that have existed for both of my children in every single grade level and at both public and charter school.” Simmons’s email inquired about actions and steps planned to address the issues.

“This is gravely concerning to me and I’m most upset to hear that when this is overheard by faculty it continues,” Simmons wrote. “This same group also has issues with LGBTQ+. This should not be tolerated … This must end.”

In an email provided by Director of Communications and Public Relations Katie Smith, the school district said it’s been in communication with Simmons since she spoke to the board. Smith said the district is not able to provide any details on past or present investigations because of student privacy laws.

Simmons received email replies in late November and early December from district staffers and Board of Education President Russ Smart.

In a Dec. 1 email, Smart explained the board does not directly respond to public comments during meetings. He told Simmons Weld RE-4 schools follow board policies on bullying prevention, intervention and discipline. Smart also wrote the district professional development review team is open to evaluating suggested staff training programs. The discipline matrix is not final, he said.

Smart encouraged Simmons to meet with school principals or Scallon about concerns regarding the reporting process or details on how specific incidents were handled.

“This is not something we take lightly, and we will review and address it appropriately,” Smart wrote. “School safety, including bullying and harassment, is something we take very seriously.”

Simmons said her main message for the board was to ask the members to implement restorative practices in more schools, especially at the middle and high schools.

Simmons said she also wants the district to equip or train teachers to listen and respond to incidents they hear about in schools. Simmons said teachers and school staff should also be educated in diversity and inclusion training.

Restorative practices is a field within the social sciences that studies how to strengthen relationships between individuals as well as social connections within communities, according to the International Institute of Restorative Practices.

Simmons works for Larimer County Human Services, supervising caseworkers working with at-risk adolescents. She said restorative practices are based on education and healing the harm, not punishing the wrongdoer. Simmons also said

another example of a restorative practice might be students watching and listening to an educational talk about race.

Simmons said restorative practices were used when her son attended Skyview School of STEM in Windsor. The boy was called a racially offensive name, and school leaders and a counselor facilitated a conversation between the students. Simmons said her son had a chance to tell the other student how it made him feel to hear the offensive term.

She said an important component of restorative practices or restorative justice is that the victim must approve of the process.

Smith said required training districtwide includes education in Title IX, which is in the Education Amendments of 1972. Smith said Crisis Prevention Institute training and Youth Mental Health First Aid are available to staff throughout the district.

“There may be other schoolbased professional development training being offered specifically in this area,” Smith wrote.

“Diversity and inclusion training is very broad. As we shared with Ms. Simmons, if there are specific trainings she recommends, we would be happy to evaluate this within our larger professional development practices.”

JANUARY 2023 | mywindsor | 19

Weld RE-4 Coordinator for Attendance and Discipline Kevin Copher and Director of Instruction Amy Heinsma co-wrote an email to Simmons on Nov. 29 in response to her appearance before the board.

The school district this year implemented Character Counts curriculum through all grade levels, they wrote. The pillars of the curriculum are trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, caring and citizenship. These are in place to support a positive school culture of caring and kindness, so all students feel safe to learn and grow, according to the email.

Copher and Heinsma also said the district is “streamlining disciplinary practices with a comprehensive and consistent discipline matrix that guides administrators in analyzing behaviors to determine appropriate consequences aligned with Board policies.”

Copher and Heinsma’s email said an elementary school is piloting the implementation of restorative practices in partnership with Colorado State University professors.

“As always, there is more work to be done regarding diversity, equity, and inclusion,” Copher and Heinsma wrote. “We echo your statement to the Board that all students deserve to attend a school where peace and belongingness set the foundation for

intellectual and creative growth. We continue to explore and implement best practices to do better and be better for our students and the community we serve.”

Smith said informal restorative practices are occurring at all Weld RE-4 schools and with a systematic pilot program at Range View Elementary in Severance.

“If we find that it is successful, we will roll it out to other schools,” Smart said.

The pilot program at Range View is a “comprehensive, schoolwide program vs. informal practices occurring on a staff-by-staff level at schools across the district,” Smith wrote.

If a student is disrespectful to a teacher, potential restorative practices might include “coaching the student on how to repair the relationship with the teacher and appropriate behaviors moving forward,” Smith said.

In the spring, following Simmons’ son’s experience with the Snapchat photo, Simmons offered to connect Scallon with CSU professors Patrice Palmer and Toni Zimmerman about possible proactive training options for students and staff.

Palmer is an assistant dean in the college of business and the director of justice, diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives at CSU. Zimmerman, who has a doctorate in family and child

development, is a licensed marriage and family therapist in Colorado. She is in the department of human development and family studies and directs the marriage and family therapy graduate program.

Palmer and Zimmerman expressed interest in helping Weld RE-4. In another email, Simmons asked Scallon about next steps to talk with the professors. Simmons also asked Scallon about progress on the establishment of a multicultural alliance within the district, saying she wanted to maintain momentum.

Scallon replied the next day, April 20, that momentum was not lost and they would soon arrange an in-person meeting. Simmons said she never heard from Scallon on the meetings with the CSU faculty or on the multicultural alliance.

A multicultural alliance is a student-run peer group with sponsorship or advisement from a school staff member. The alliance focuses on issues of multiculturalism and raising awareness with events such as during Black History Month.

Simmons wrote in the introductory email to the CSU professors that she and Scallon, then the Windsor High principal, discussed the need for proactive intervention in the district.

“This is of particular importance because Ms. Scallon has just been selected as the new Superintendent and clearly has a passion to ensure that issues of bias are addressed with both teachers and students,” Simmons wrote.

Simmons said she favored piloting restorative practices programs at both the primary and secondary levels because the complexity of discipline is different at elementary schools from middle and high schools.

Simmons said her daughter spoke with Osborn in his office

20 | mywindsor | JANUARY 2023
Weld RE-4 School District administration building in Windsor. Weld RE-4 School District serves students in Windsor, Severance and west Greeley. Photo credit.

about the Halloween incident and provided the names of students who were involved.

Simmons’ email said Osborn told her daughter he’d speak with the students, but Simmons was not satisfied with the response. She said she was concerned over correspondence with Osborn during which he said in a voicemail it was good to hear the students’ racially charged language in the hallway was not used directly toward Simmons’ daughter.

Osborn said Simmons’ daughter also didn’t feel the language was directed at her.

Simmons’ message to the administrators said her children “deserve to attend schools where they are not exposed to this language in any form, whether in passing or directly. I do not feel relieved to hear it was not directed at her.”

In the voicemail, Osborn spoke of the “ignorance and lack of consideration of students using the words in the halls.” He told Simmons the language was being addressed with the students and would continue to be discussed.

Simmons said in late November the students’ choice to wear the monkey costumes was “horrific.”

“It’s not like a kid who slips up,” she added. “The fact that they felt so comfortable that they’d show up in costume that way was horrifying.”

Simmons said all the incidents— those described here as well as others

her children have experi-enced — can’t be addressed as independent matters. She said the problem is “systemic across the district.”

“Until you train teachers and use restorative practice, it’s going to keep happening,” Simmons added.

Simmons said she understands the school district can’t control all of the students’ language, behavior or actions. She only wants the schools to make an impact within their buildings.

“Control what you can control in the walls of the building,” Simmons said, adding she’s heard plenty of support from educators and administrators on staff training when discussing her kids’ experiences. “They create their own barriers. I got a bunch of that at the district level. Just do something. It’s not rocket science.”

JANUARY 2023 | mywindsor | 21


School’s In

American Legacy Academy, which was approved earlier this year to operate a charter school in the Weld RE-4 School District, will open to students in fall 2023 at a site in Windsor.

American Legacy leaders have framework terms in place to occupy a portion of an existing three-story building at 1870 Marina Drive. The building is owned by Marina One LLC, a limited liability company led by Martin Lind, and located in the Water Valley South subdivision of Windsor, according to information presented to the Windsor town board earlier this month.

in Windsor’s RainDance neighborhood from Weld RE-4 School District as a site for the charter school, but the school district board of education declined the offer.

“We are excited, relieved and even more than relieved, we are thrilled and this site is huge for us,” said Julie Babcock, chair of American Legacy Academy board. “We’ve had many ups and downs and we said we’re not giving up. We kept pushing. We can’t stop working. We have a lot of work to do.”

American Legacy Academy will occupy the east side of the building. Health and fitness facility W Club at W Station is on the west side of the site, and it will continue to operate in its current space with its normal hours and a separate entrance from the school, according to information from American Legacy Academy and The Water Valley Company, which was founded and developed by Martin and Viki Lind.

The location also accomplishes an American Legacy goal of establishing its local schools in residential areas. The Marina Drive site is also near Pelican Lakes Golf Course.

American Legacy leaders previously requested to buy 10 acres

The Windsor school will be a permanent location for students in kindergarten through eighth grades. Babcock said American Legacy anticipates 386 students at the school for the first year — with an opening in either August or September.

American Legacy Academy said in its news release the school will soon begin accepting applications, and it’s received letters of interest representing 437 families and 659 children.

Babcock said she anticipates the Windsor building will be at capacity with approximately 648 students for the 2027-28 school year.

“We have done our homework and we have come up with a reasonable estimate,” Babcock said.

Following months of negotiations

22 | mywindsor | JANUARY 2023 Education | NEW CHARTER SCHOOL
NEW WINDSOR CHARTER SCHOOL Approximately 385 K-8 students could attend for fall 2023 opening
The prospective site of the American Legacy Academy charter school is seen at 1870 Marina Dr. In Windsor

and conversations, American Legacy earned approval from Weld RE-4 in June to be the second charter school in school district. Windsor Charter Academy has operated in Weld RE-4 since 2001.

American Legacy’s contract with Weld RE-4 allows it to operate two locations under one charter agreement. The Weld RE-4 School District Board of Education approved a contract with American Legacy Academy in October.

The Windsor site will be the first location. American Legacy continues to plan to build a second location in the Tailholt subdivision in Severance. Babcock said American Legacy wants to open the Severance location in fall 2024.

John Biner, a former principal at Fort Lupton and Brighton high schools, is the final candidate to be the principal of American Legacy Academy in Windsor. Babcock said Biner will assemble the staff and faculty for the school, and hiring could begin in the spring.

Town of Windsor planner Kimberly Lambrecht, Babcock and her husband, David Sislowski, a member of the school’s building advisory committee, spoke to the town board Dec. 12 with an information-only update on the project. Sislowski is also a former town board member and candidate for Windsor mayor. Sislowski and Babcock live in Water Valley South, not far from Marina Drive.

Lambrecht said state statute requires American Legacy Academy to advise the town planning commission in writing before entering into a contract for a facility. The school made the notification at the planning commission’s Dec. 7 meeting.

Back-up documentation on the town board agenda for Dec. 12 indicated American Legacy also wanted to inform the town board of its intent to operate the charter school. Town board members Barry Wilson and Jason Hallett said at the meeting they felt residents near Marina Drive should be notified about the school’s plans—

despite the fact the move is part of an approved site plan with no proposed exterior changes to the building and would next go to the building permit stage unless the planning commission requests site plan information, as Lambrecht explained.

A sketch of an American Legacy Academy charter school building planned for Severance and Windsor as of fall 2022. In August 2022, ALA leadership announced it selected a site for the Severance school, projected to open in August 2024. The Weld RE-4 School District Board of Education in June 2022 approved ALA’s application to the district. Weld RE-4 and ALA agreed on a contract and the Weld RE-4 board of education approved a 4-year deal at its Oct. 17 board meeting.

Hallett also lives in Water Valley South and represents the district on the town board including Marina Drive. Wilson, Hallett and Windsor Mayor Paul Rennemeyer all expressed support for the school at the Marina Drive location in comments at the town board meeting.

“I think it’s an excellent site, but there still are neighbors and we should let them know,” Wilson said.

The Water Valley Company announced the finalization of the Marina Drive location Dec. 22 in an emailed newsletter.

“The location of the American Academy is strategic not only because the facility is beautiful for an education center, but the safety and security of the area is unparalleled,” the company said.

A significant topic of conversation about the school at the town board meeting centered on the school’s impact

on traffic in the area. A traffic study was initiated by Water Valley and Marina One, and results are expected the first or second week in January at the latest, according to Garrett Scallon, who is chief operating officer of Water Valley Land Company, who represented the company at the town board meeting, as well as the son of Weld RE-4 superintendent Michelle Scallon.

Scallon said the company engineer will evaluate cycles for drop off and pick up at the school and consider the traffic impact based on total capacity of approximately 648 students.

“He has had conversations with town traffic engineer on the approach to the project and just what the town’s expectations are,” Scallon told the town board.

The site plan for the school allows for queueing for 83 vehicles. The Water Valley Company release and Babcock both said the traffic plan for the “stacking” of the vehicles at the school will mean minimum contact for the neighborhood with Baja and Los Cabos drives nearby.

“The expectation is a very fluid and non-eventful load and unload of these children,” The Water Valley Company message said.

“Additionally, unlike most schools, this location allows over 11,000 residents to access it via their golf carts because of proximity to pedestrian routes.”

JANUARY 2023 | mywindsor | 23
1180 Main Street, Suite 5B Windsor, CO 80550 970-674-0191 SANDI Y. SQUICQUERO M. ED., LPC Lice nse d P rofessio n al C o unse lo r N atio n a l B o a rd C e r ti fi e d C lin ic a l Hyp n oth e ra pis t Fo rm e r P ro b atio n a n d Fa m ily S e r vice s Wo rke r N e a rly 4 0 ye a r s of exp e rie n ce • Smoking Cessation • Mental Health Disorders • Teletherapy Schedule your next appointment today! NEW YEAR, HEALTHIER YOU!

Along-time member of the Windsor Police Department recently graduated from the FBI National Academy.

Commander Aaron Lopez graduated Dec. 8 from the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Virginia, where he served as a domestic host within the International Partnership program, according to a department news release.

The National Academy is 11 weeks of advanced communication, leadership and fitness training. To attend, participants must typically hold executive-level roles and have proven records as professionals within their agencies. On average, those accepted into the academy possess 21 years of law enforcement experience, the release said.

Lopez began his law enforcement career in 2003. Since 2006, Lopez has served in multiple roles— patrol officer, detective, patrol sergeant and traffic safety unit sergeant — at the Windsor Police Department. By 2020, he was promoted to commander.

On Dec. 8, FBI Director Christopher Wray, along with Class 284 representative William LextonJones of the Metropolitan Police of London, United Kingdom, delivered

remarks at the ceremony.

The National Academy’s 284th session consisted of people from 48 states, the District of Columbia and 27 foreign nations, five military organizations and five federal civilian organizations, according to the release.

The 284th session also welcomed an honorary class graduate, DJ Danial — a young boy diagnosed with terminal cancer who has a passion for law enforcement. Academy students swore DJ in as an honorary officer with 52 participating agencies, including the Windsor Police Department. While defying the odds in his battle against cancer, DJ also serves as an honorary officer with 758 law enforcement organizations.

Windsor police thanked the community for the ongoing support in the department’s multiple missions, including the FBI National Academy.

“The Windsor Police Department is committed to professional development, training and sustaining our further growth through strong leadership,” the release said. “By investing in the continued education and training of our department members, we continually strengthen our agency and commitment to the community.”

24 | mywindsor | JANUARY 2023 Public Safety | FBI GRADUATE
WINDSOR POLICE COMMANDER GRADUATES FROM FBI NATIONAL ACADEMY FBI Director Christopher Wray, left, shakes Commander Aaron Lopez’s hand during the FBI National Academy graduation ceremony. (Courtesy/ Windsor Police Department)

Windsor-Severance Library to close Jan. 9 for renovation project

The Clearview Library District has announced that beginning Monday, Jan. 9, the Windsor-Severance Library, 720 3rd St., will be closed for three weeks for renovations.

During the renovation, construction crews will tear down walls, remove carpet and move collections and furniture.

Though the library’s building will be closed, patrons can still peruse materials at the bookmobile. The bookmobile will be parked in the library parking lot during the closure.

The hours for the bookmobile during construction are:

• Monday: Noon-5 p.m.

• Tuesday: 9 a.m.-2 p.m.

• Wednesday: Noon-2 p.m.

• Thursday: 9 a.m.-2 p.m.

• Friday: Noon-5 p.m.

• Saturday: 9 a.m.-2 p.m.

During the closure, the bookmobile will not be making its community rounds until Monday, Feb. 6.

Materials borrowed from the library after Dec. 19 have been granted an extended due date of March 6.

When the library reopens, there will be limited seating, tables, computers and computer stations until the new furniture has been delivered.

The following services will not be available during the library closure:

• The book drop near the library entrance and drivethru book drop;

• Physical access to collections;

• Public computers;

• Meeting rooms;

• On-site programs and events;

• In-person Ask-a-Geek appointments;

• Printing or photocopying services/access;

• Quiet areas to work.

Patrons can still take advantage of the library’s curbside pickup 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and from 1-5 p.m. Sunday.

Lobby stops at assisted living facilities will continue during the closure, and the library’s digital library will still be available.

The library’s free WiFi will still be accessible from the library’s parking lot.

Notary services will be offered at the Administrative Services building on Ash Street. Appointments for notary services can be made by calling (970) 686-5603.

Many of the library’s events and programs will be relocated, held virtually or postponed until the renovations are completed. Information for each program will be in the registration pages for each program or event.

Community members can keep up with updates about the renovations at, as well as on the library’s social media pages.

For more information, go to www.clearviewlibrary. org.

JANUARY 2023 | mywindsor | 25 Business
The Windsor-Severance Library will be closed for three weeks while the building undergoes renovations. (Courtesy Windsor-Severance Library)

Town of Windsor receives Cartegraph Flag Forward Award for its use of


Thetown of Windsor has been recognized for its use of smart infrastructure management through the Cartegraph Flag Forward Award.

“Like many communities in Colorado, the town of Windsor has faced significant population growth in recent years,” the company stated in a press release. “With an increased demand on infrastructure assets, the town of Windsor Public Works embraces modern technology and smart integrations to manage every infrastructure asset: indoors, outdoors, above-ground and below-ground.”

Cartegraph, a provider of infrastructure asset management software, identified 12 organizations across the U.S. that excelled in using infrastructure data, efficient work order

management, commitment to sustainability and responsiveness to resident requests to receive either the High-Performance Operations Award or the Flag Forward Award.

Recipients of the Flag Forward Award were hand-picked by Cartegraph CEO Josh Mallamud. The design of the award is inspired by the Cartegraph flag and is “intended to recognize organizations that are challenging the status quo and revolutionizing the industry.”

In addition to Windsor, the town of Oro Valley, Ariz. and the Le-Ax Water District in Ohio also received honors.

For more information on Cartegraph and the Flag Forward and High-Performance Operations awards, go to www.

26 | mywindsor | JANUARY 2023
Windsor’s Public Works staff, from left to right, Ken Breneman, Stormwater and Projects supervisor; Rob Winter, Acting Streets Operations supervisor; Brian Rowe, deputy director of Public Works; Dennis Markham, Wastewater Services superintendent; and Chris Dempsey, Fleet manager, proudly display the team’s Cartegraph Flag Forward Award. (Courtesy/Town of Windsor)



The town of Windsor is seeking volunteers for its new HOST program. Volunteers with the program, which stands for history, open spaces and trails, will be trained to become dedicated stewards of Windsor’s natural history and outdoor spaces.

“We are looking for folks who are passionate about the outdoors and willing to commit to giving back,” explained Madeline Cheek, volunteer coordinator for the program. “Training is free to volunteers and is a great opportunity to build public speaking, group facilitation and leadership skills.”

The team will consist of several positions, including Windsor Naturalist, Trail Docent and Trail Ambassador. Volunteer opportunities with the program will take place

across the town’s open spaces and trails.

People interested in volunteering for the HOST program should be passionate about the outdoors and have a strong commitment to community service.

Candidates must be at least 18 and be able to attend the required training. There is a one-year commitment to the program.

To apply to become a HOST volunteer, go to

For more information on the HOST program, including details on volunteer positions and training dates, or to learn more about other volunteer opportunities in Windsor, go to www.windsorgov. com.

JANUARY 2023 | mywindsor | 27
HOST Program
Paint Your Own Pottery Studio • Walk-ins Welcome • Hand Building Classes • Kid’s Summer Classes • Team Building Events • Birthday Parties Local Family Owned Business 1215 Main St Unit H, Windsor, CO 80550 970-388-1581
Love the outdoors? Then check out volunteer opportunities with Windsor’s new HOST program. (Courtesy/Town of Windsor)

ABC Child Development Centers and Bright School-Age Centers set the bar high when it comes quality child care

Something for

Finding a quality child care program that you trust is just one of the many challenges parents of babies, toddlers and young children face.

As a parent, you want to place your child into the hands of someone who will offer the same kindness, compassion and patience that you do at home.

In addition to quality child care, centers that offer programs that help foster socialization skills and early education are a big draw for many parents.

The locally-owned ABC Child Development Centers and Bright School-Age Centers has combined those key components of child care and early education to offer the highest quality child care programs in the northern Colorado region for more than 50 years.

ABC Child Development Centers and Bright School-Age Centers offers programs for children as young as six weeks up to 12-yearsold through its main center at 1215 Automation Drive as well as at local elementary and charter schools in Windsor.

Schools that feature the Bright School-Age programs in the Wind-

sor and Severance area are:

• Grandview Elementary, 1586 Grand Ave.

• Skyview School of STEM, 1000 Stone Mountain Court

• Windsor Charter Academy, 680 Academy Court

• Range View Elementary, 700 Ponderosa Drive

• Tozer Primary School, 501 Oak St.

And, when the center says quality programs and the health and safety of the children are its top priority, it’s not just lip service. They have the credentials and ratings from the state to back their claims.

The centers are part of the state’s Colorado Shines Rating program. The program evaluates and rates child care centers on a variety of standards, including

28 | mywindsor | JANUARY 2023 Business | CHILD CARE
ABC Child Development Centers curriculum is designed to align with the Colorado Early Learning Guidelines. (Courtesy/ABC Child Development Centers)

health and safety, licensing, the center’s standing with the state as well as the qualifications of the staff and continued education and training offered.

“They will look at the teacher/

child interaction, the learning environment in the classroom, the materials, the meals that we are serving — just the program as a whole,” said Briana Meza, director of Quality Improvement. “They

will use an assessment tool called the ERS tool, and then based on that score and a bunch of documents, you get your final score.”

Child care centers participating in the program are not given a notice as to when representatives will be onsite to conduct their evaluation and child care centers are not mandated to participate in the Colorado Shines Rating program.

The program scores childcare centers on a rating from 1-5, with 5 being the highest score, showcasing the center’s excellence in care.

“All of our centers are actually the highest level and we just got our last one, our Windsor location. They are the only one in Windsor that is a level five out of all the child care centers in Windsor,” explained Lacey Rubick, director of Recruitment and Corporate Support.

To get a rating of five is rare and there are not many child care centers throughout the state that

JANUARY 2023 | mywindsor | 29
Opposite left: The safety, security and health of its children are top priorities for ABC Child Development Centers and programs. (Courtesy/ABC Child Development Centers), Above: ABC Child Development Centers and Bright School-Age Centers are designed to be model child care programs.(Courtesy/ABC Child Development Centers)

have earned the top score, Meza added.

There have been numerous studies throughout the years about how attending preschool can set children up for success in their future educational endeavors.

Some of the benefits children receive from attending preschool are:

• Learning to follow directions

• Sharing skills

• Socialization skills

• Emotional development

• Honing motor skills

• Development of individuality

• Freedom of play

• Self-esteem

• Nurtures creativity and curiosity

“A lot of kids, if they are an only child at home or they are staying at home, getting them into that social interaction before they get to kindergarten provides they won’t have that anxiety of never being out of the house with a group of children,” said Barb Schuttenberg, Preschool Program director. “A lot of it is the social piece, but we do have curriculum where we work on prereading, pre-writing and pre-math skills in every preschool classroom.”

Despite the benefits, sending their little ones to preschool may not be financially possible for some families.

That’s where Colorado’s universal preschool bill, HB22-1295, picks up the cost of preschool for families that may not be able to normally afford it.

The bill, signed into law by Gov. Jared Polis on April 25, 2022, allows children age 4 to access to free preschool beginning the fall of 2023.

The program will provide at least 15 hours of voluntary state-funded preschool starting in 2023. The universal preschool program is expected to save Colorado families an average of $4,300 per year.

“It doesn’t matter their income, families with preschool age children can participate in the program,” said Schuttenberg. “We will be helping families that are already enrolled in our centers as well as helping new

families just interested in preschool sign up for the program.”

Some 3-year-olds with certain qualifying factors may be eligible for part-time, or 10 hours a week, of free preschool programs.

Families of children in the year before they are eligible for kindergarten, with certain qualifying factors, are also eligible for an additional 15 hours stacked on top of the half-day programming, bringing those children to full-day programming.

“Ultimately, we are hoping that it will include every four-year-old that may not have been included when head start was an option. This is taking the place of the Colorado Preschool Program,” Schuttenberg explained. “I really think that they are casting the net further and hopefully getting all those 4-year-olds so that they get at least one year of preschool before they go to kindergarten.”

While the bill is set to go into effect Jan. 17, not all preschool or child care facilities will be part of the universal preschool program. However, six of ABC’s preschool

locations will be participating in the universal preschool program, including the Windsor location.

ABC Child Development Centers offers child care services from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday year-round. The center follows an “open-door” policy where parents can come and check in on their children at any time as well as provides daily reports, photos and other information on how their child is doing at the center.

“We do have something for everybody, whether you are wanting that preschool experience or the full-day, or you have an infant or school-age child, we just have something for everybody and it works out really well,” Meza said.

For more information on ABC Child Development Centers and Bright School-Age Centers, go to or call (970)352-2222.

Universal Preschool (UPK) ensures that every child in the year before they are eligible for kindergarten receives a half-day, up to 15 hours per week, state-funded, voluntary preschool experience, beginning in the 2023-24 school year. (Courtesy/ABC Child Development Centers)

30 | mywindsor | JANUARY 2023
Windsor coach Huston inducted Hall

Windsor volleyball coach LaVerne Huston to be inducted into CHSCA Hall of Fame

Renowned Windsor volleyball coach LaVerne Huston will be inducted into the Colorado High School Coaches Association’s Hall of Fame this spring, the association announced in early December.

Huston will belong to the 59th class with Gary Childress (Grandview boys’ basketball), Kelly Cowan (Hotchkiss/North Fork track and cross country), Gail Crawford (Eads, multiple sports), Jess Downey (Lamar/ Rocky Ford/McClave baseball), Gary Osse (Del Norte/ Wheat Ridge/Chatfield basketball) and Ron Shepherd (Rocky Ford track and cross country).

The seven-person class will be inducted during a banquet at 5 p.m. April 17 at Cielo Castle Pines in Castle Rock.

Tickets for the event will soon be available at

Huston has led Windsor to a 521-289 record over the past 31 seasons. The Wizards went 25-5 and were the 4A state runner-up this past fall.

As a mainstay in the state tournament, Windsor claimed the 4A championship in 1995 and was the runner-up in 1996.

Huston began her coaching career at University before enjoying a three-year stop at Valley, her alma mater.

JANUARY 2023 | mywindsor | 31 Sports
Ideal Dermatology is proud to introduce our newest practitioner! Nichole recently moved from Annapolis, Mar yland with her husband and young son to embrace the mountain culture. In her spare time, she enjoys hiking, camping, skiing and all things outdoors. Now accepting new patients! Welcome to the practice, Nichole! Nichole Hart, MSN, FNP-BC Ideal Dermatology 1683 Main St, Windsor 1708 N. Boise Ave, Loveland 1101 Oakridge Drive, Ft. Collins (970) 667-3116 Kevin Mott, MD, FAAD • David J Seitz, PA-C Kathryn L Olsen, PA-C • Meredith S. Williams PA-C Nichole Hart, MSN, FNP-BC Providing the Ultimate Care in Dermatology General Dermatology • Mohs Specialized Micrographic Skin Cancer Surger y • Non-Surgical Sensus SRT-100 Skin Cancer Treatment • Actinic Keratosis • Basal Cell Carcinoma • Squamous Cell Carcinoma • Dysplastic Nevus • Malignant Melanoma • Skin Discolorations & Age Spots 1683 Main St, Windsor 1708 N. Boise Ave, Loveland 1101 Oakridge Drive, Ft. Collins (970) 667-3116 Providing the Ultimate Care in Dermatology Ideal Dermatology 1683 Main St, Windsor Other Locations: Fort Collins, Loveland, Boulder, Sterling, and Winter Park (970) 667-3116 Kevin Mott, MD, FAAD • David J Seitz, PA-C Kathryn L Olsen, PA-C • Meredith S. Williams PA-C Nichole Hart, MSN, FNP-BC
Windsor head coach LaVerne Huston speaks with her team as they huddle after losing their state final match against the Thompson Valley Eagles in the 4A state volleyball tournament at the Denver Coliseum in Denver, Nov. 12, 2022. The Windsor Wizards fell to the Thompson Valley Eagles 3-0. (Alex McIntyre/Staff Photographer)



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Friday-Sunday, January 6-8 & 13-15, 2023

12 - 4 p.m. each day

Art & Heritage Center 116 5th St., Windsor Free admission

Explore the contradictions, harmonies, and grey areas that surround us with thought-provoking art and poetry. Join local artists and poets as they share their interpretations of Black & White at the 8th annual Community Art Exhibition.


Saturdays, 7 to 10:30 p.m. Community Recreation Center 250 N. 11th Street Cost: $15

Kid’s Nite Out (KNO) Across America is a youth activity program held weekly at the Windsor Community Recreation Center. KNO provides a fun, safe, active environment for every participant.

Admission is $15 per person. Dinner vouchers are also available for purchase for $7. This includes pizza and a drink or sub sandwich, chips, and a drink. Dates are subject to change. Please visit for confirmed dates, program information, and the nightly schedule of events.

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Art & Heritage Center 116 5th St., Windsor

Do you do any form of art? Join our community of artists every Monday at Open Studio! Bring yourself and your supplies; we provide the tables and the space. All mediums are welcome. Advance registration is required to reserve your spot. Age: 16+.

Note: No sessions on 1/2, 1/16, or 2/20 for holidays. Location: Art & Heritage Center.


Oak Room, Windsor Community Recreation Center 250 11th Street, Windsor 9:30 - 10:15 a.m. FREE 10:30- 11:15 a.m. FREE

Parents and Guardians, take a break with joyful music-making for the whole family! Join us for a free trial Music Together® class and experience the joy of making music as a community! You’ll have fun while also supporting your child in all areas of learning – language and early literacy, social and emotional development, cognitive growth, and physical and motor skills. Plant the seeds for musical development through singing, movement, and instrument play. Class is for mixed ages (babies through age 5) and caregivers. Older siblings are welcome to attend. Come and sing, dance, and play with us!

Ages: 0 - 5.

32 | mywindsor | JANUARY 2023


4 - 5 p.m.,

Ribbon Cutting: 4:30 p.m. Peculier Ales, 301 Main St. The Windsor Area Chamber of Commerce cordially invites you to the Ribbon Cutting & Grand opening of Windsor Gives. The event will include light snacks, and beverages compliments of Windsor Gives. Although the Open House is a free event, you are required to register so the Chamber has an accurate count of guests for food and drinks.


To mark the birthday of Martin Luther King Jr., the chief spokesperson for nonviolent activism in the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s, which protested racial discrimination in federal and state law.


Windsor Community Recreation Center 250 11th Street, Windsor Drop-off will be from 7:30 - 9 a.m. and pick-up will be between 4 - 5:30 p.m. curbside on the east side of the building.

Camp Windsor is a day camp offered at the Windsor Community Recreation Center for children ages 5 to 12. Enjoy a variety of activities, such as gym and outdoor play, and arts and crafts! A daily itinerary will be given first thing in the morning at drop-off. Please bring swimming attire, backpack with a lunch and two snacks, and a water bottle. Note any allergies when registering.


10 - 11 a.m.

Community Recreation Center: Pine Room 250 N. 11th St.

Coffee with the Mayor is a regularly occurring event that allows Windsor residents to attend and discuss their questions, concerns, and ideas with Mayor Paul Rennemeyer. The event is free and coffee is provided. Come with questions. Come with comments. Come for coffee and conversation!


January 25-April 23

Windsor Community Recreation Center, 250 N. 11th Street

Regular Hours: Monday - Friday 5 - 9 p.m.; Saturday 8 a.m. - 7 p.m.; Sunday 12 - 6 p.m. Free admission

Trains, buses, cars, and bikes! These are just a few of the transportation methods that are crucial for connecting people and places. Explore the past, present, and future of transportation in Windsor!


8 - 9:30 a.m.

Coffee House 29 1039 Main St., Windsor

Windsor residents and business owners are invited to join District 3 Town Board Member Ken Bennett to discuss ideas and ask questions during a Community Conversation event planned for Saturday, Jan. 28, from 8 a.m. to 9:30 a.m., at Coffee House 29. Coffee House 29 is located at 1039 Main St. For more information about Windsor’s Town Board, visit TownBoard.

JANUARY 2023 | mywindsor | 33
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Final Thought
“The secret of getting ahead is getting started.”


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