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Because every town needs a park, a library and a newspaper

Carbondale’s weekly

Volume 12, Number 43 | December 3 - 9, 2020

community connector

Like father like son

A new Mr. Black teaches woodshop in a pandemic By Will Grandbois Sopris Sun Staff You may not be able to tell under the mask, but there’s an almost-familiar face in the woodshop at Roaring Fork High School (RFHS). New to teaching himself, Michael Black grew up watching his father, Larry, fill the role for more than 30 years. “It isn’t something I advertise out to all my students but the legacy of my dad here

Carbondale/Cowen Center.

Michael Black (center) is finally getting to teach shop in person after months online. Photo by Sue Rollyson at this high school was really a positive one,” he observed. “You'd be hard pressed to find anyone who didn't have a good Larry Black experience at one point or another.” His brother, Ian, teaches shop at Eagle Valley High School — and his mom was a teacher as well. “I get kind of a cool mix of seeing my brother in like his seventh year of being a shop teacher and how he's kind of choosing to do things and then the input that I get from my dad is really rooted in how he did things throughout his whole career,” he noted. Black didn’t actually plan to follow the family business. After graduating from RFHS in 2009, he studied studio art in Durango, then got interested in architecture while working construction. That led to a Master’s

degree and ultimately a job with Raw Creative, a Denver-based design, build and fabricating firm. “I got to work in all of those different shops and learn all sorts of new skills,” he recalled. “Then I worked as an architectural draftsman designer for a while and eventually ended up wanting more of the hands on work so I transitioned onto the job site. That was a lot of fun but the city life was starting to become kind of just more stress than I wanted to be dealing with.” So late last year he moved back to Carbondale and, while working odd jobs, saw the opening at Roaring Fork. As one of the few new hires this year to apply before the pandemic, he didn’t realize he was signing up to teach online. For something as hands-on as

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woodshop, that took some doing. “I recognized that it wasn't realistic for me to distribute a bunch of tools into the hands of the kids, so the next best thing that I could think was to model the behavior that I was expecting in the classroom and and the skills that they would need to have to hit the ground running,” he explained. Rather than try to do it all live on a laptop, Black pre-recorded videos walking students through the tools and how they applied to a small project. He’d pause for questions, just like in a regular in-person demonstration. And it seemed to work. When in-person learning resumed — albeit with some hiccups — the kids seemed to know their way around the woodshop.

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Ps & Qs

By Jeannie Perry All I want this Christmas is joy, prosperity, and a collective sense of harmony. But, like the jaded characters in every Hallmark Christmas movie, I mostly just feel anxious and worried as I count down the days… And I have serious doubts about Santa’s ability to fix this by Christmas. Apparently, I’m not the only one having holiday angst this year. Sounds like one of the Koch brothers got a visit from the ghost of Christmas past (tinyurl.com/y26azv5g). All the remakes of the classic story by Charles Dickens — A Christmas Carol — have a unique take on the way the ghost appears to the curmudgeonly lead character

Ghosts of Christmas past who has lost the holiday spirit. I have no doubt Mr. Koch’s apparition was as unique in relaying his message as mine, who showed up late at night in the form of James Caan drunk on eggnog and wearing a Santa hat. Hey, whatever it takes to bring the Joy! I remember the days when I actually looked forward to the holidays, before masks and hand sanitizer were acceptable stocking stuffers. Once upon a time we were sitting around with some people we had just met, having drinks on the patio. This was the way it had always been, and I took it for granted. We were all just Americans, enjoying the evening and discussing our holiday plans. Suddenly, a woman walking past our table tripped and landed face first on the pavement. It sounded like a steak hitting the ground, and we all froze for an unbelieving second. Then the blood began to pool beside her head, and everyone sprang into action. One guy ran inside to call 911 while three other people knelt by the woman and the rest of us formed the perimeter. My husband, the yin to my yang, i.e., always cool in a crisis, started

asking her questions: where is the worst pain? Can you move your fingers and toes? What’s your name? Karen. Her name was Karen and she had taken a bad fall. While we waited for the paramedics to arrive, we all did whatever we could to make her more comfortable and ease the tension around us. There is a noticeable difference in the air when someone is severely injured; a collective feeling of compassion mixed with a nervous energy. Like an Episcopal priest on coke. That night was the perfect example of our innate human instinct to help a complete stranger in need. Nowadays, when we need to be there for each other more than ever, we are masked and weary. Our collective anxiety is at Defcon 1, even though we are hunkered down at home most of the time. We are a divided nation on the brink of civil unrest, and we do not listen to each other. Instead, we listen to news outlets that pump out propaganda for whichever side owns them, and the talking heads on tv who are just there to see who can sell the most.

Sell the most whatever. Consumerism is the name of the game. The thing about these pundits today is, they are paid to be there, and they are really just waiting for their turn to talk so they can state their “facts.” No one is listening; therefore no one is heard. And now, when we find ourselves on either side of a very wide national gap, it is harder than ever to hear what the other side has to say. Can Team Red and Team Blue peacefully coexist this holiday season? Like cats and dogs living together in harmony, I believe it can be done with lots of training and treats. And we can get some middleof-the-road legislation that will represent us for a change. Everyone in Washington can listen up, because the American people have the final say on policies that affect our daily lives, and active listening is one thing we can all do to bridge the gap we’ve created in our own country. Here’s hoping we all wake up on Christmas morning to find inner peace and stuffed stockings. And that we take the time to listen to our neighbor’s weird dream involving James Caan and too much eggnog.


Sincerest thanks to our

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Email marilyn@soprissun.com for more information.

Jim Calaway, Honorary Chair Kay Brunnier Scott Gilbert Bob Young – Alpine Bank Peter Gilbert Umbrella Roofing, Inc. Bill Spence and Sue Edelstein Greg and Kathy Feinsinger Carolyn Nelson Jim Noyes True Nature Healing Arts Nicolette Toussaint Jill and Gary Knaus Megan Tackett Ken & Donna Riley Michelle & Ed Buchman CoVenture Lee Beck and John Stickney Deborah and Shane Evans Carly and Frosty Merriott

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for including us in their final wishes. Mary Lilly

And all our SunScribers and community members for your support.

It truly takes a village to keep The Sun shining.

None too soon Dear Editor: With only about 4% of the world population, the U.S. continues to experience about 20% of the global deaths from Covid-19. Donald Trump's role in this horrifying statistic has been clear. He again confirmed his idiocy at the virtual G20 Leaders Summit, which this year prioritized the challenge of countering the global coronavirus pandemic. Making no reference to the facts of our pandemic situation or commitment to expand the availability of U.S. vaccines, Trump left to play golf while the other attendees were still speaking. In August, 2016, Trump said, "I'm going to be working for you. I'm not going to have time to go play golf." Just one of his 20,000+ documented false or mis-leading claims, this has been a costly one for us taxpayers. With transportation, Secret Service and Coast Guard costs, each of his trips to the golf course costs an average $660,000. Trump has hit the links 22% of the days he's been in office. Our bill for his golf-playing is now more than $140,000,000. Finally, we are nearly rid of the shyster Trump. We welcome Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, leaders who are already proving their aptitudes for leadership. It is none too soon. Annette Roberts-Gray Carbondale

While everyone was talking about the discovery of strange metal pillar ( frequently misnamed a monolith as a probable reference to "2001: A Space Oddysey") in Utah, Carbondalian Dave Reed made the trip to see it in person. It was none too soon, as it disappeared even as another popped up in Romania.

Fleeting Dear Editor: Windblown swirling snow A slow dance with gravity Melts with kiss to ground JM Jesse Glenwood Springs The views expressed in opinion pieces do not necessarily reflect those of The Sopris Sun. The community is invited to submit letters up to 500 words to news@soprissun.com. Longer columns are considered on a case-by-case basis. The deadline for submission is noon on Monday. 2 • THE SOPRIS SUN • soprissun.com • December 3 - December 9, 2020

Donate by mail or online. P.O. Box 399 Carbondale, CO 81623 520 S. Third Street #32 970-510-3003 www.soprissun.com Editor Will Grandbois • 970-510-0540 news@soprissun.com Executive Director Todd Chamberlin • 970-510-0246 adsales@soprissun.com Graphic Designer: Ylice Golden Reporter: Roberta McGowan Delivery: Crystal Tapp Proofreader: Lee Beck Current Board Members Raleigh Burleigh, President Marilyn Murphy, Vice President Linda Criswell, Secretary Klaus Kocher, Treasurer Kay Clarke • Carol Craven • Lee Beck Megan Tackett • Gayle Wells Donna Dayton • Terri Ritchie The Sopris Sun Board meets at 6:30 p.m. on second Mondays at the Third Street Center. Contact board@soprissun.com to reach them. Founding Board Members Allyn Harvey • Becky Young Colin Laird • Barbara New • Elizabeth Phillips Peggy DeVilbiss • Russ Criswell

The Sopris Sun, Inc. is a proud member of the Carbondale Creative District The Sopris Sun, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation. Donations to The Sun are fully tax deductible.

Gas prices are down … but how long will it last? • for our businesses • for our schools • for our families We are United to Stop the Spread of COVID-19. Show personal responsibility by taking these critical public health recommendations seriously and encourage your friends, neighbors and family to do the same.

• Limit in-person gatherings, shrink your bubble • Wear a mask • Wash your hands frequently • Keep your distance 6 feet apart • Stay home if you are sick

.com d a re p S e h t p to S to United

tagio.com n o lC e s o m re a P s o Unid

Although Thanksgiving travel via automobile was up this year, fewer people have been driving for work. Couple that with a huge drop in airplane travel and there is less demand for crude oil, which drives down the price of petroleum gasoline. Photo by Trina Ortega By Trina Ortega Sopris Sun Correspondent While more Americans have reportedly been filling up their tanks more for road-tripping, camping and van life during the Coronavirus pandemic, the increase in individual automobile gas purchases is not driving up gas prices. In fact, if you’ve visited the pumps recently, you likely noticed how much prices have dropped. According to AAA Colorado, the current statewide average for regular unleaded is $2.18/ gallon. One year ago, the statewide average was $2.79. The average among the five stations in Carbondale was $2.43/gallon on Dec. 1, 2020, compared to $3.23 in 2019. “That’s a pretty significant drop,” said J. Skyler McKinley, director of Public Relations & Government Affairs for AAA Colorado. In his four years working at AAA Colorado, studying gas trends, McKinley said he has never seen Vail-area gas prices — typically the most expensive in the state — consistently under $3/ gallon, but it has been sitting under that recently, with a current average of $2.64/gallon. “Fewer people are driving for work; fewer planes are flying. There’s just less demand for crude oil, which then drives down the price of petroleum gasoline,” McKinley added. A survey conducted by AAA Colorado showed that Thanksgiving holiday driving traffic was also up about 2 percent in the state. (Thanksgiving air travel was down by 45 percent, however.) “More people are driving; it’s just that a lot of folks are still working from home. So, overall, while there might be more leisure travel by automobile, it’s just not enough to raise demand to the degree that it’s going to affect prices given how much travel isn’t going on for work purposes,” he said. On Dec. 1, 2020, Garfield County’s average was $2.42, much higher than the state average. That higher cost per gallon mirrors other rural Colorado prices, especially counties that are home to ski destinations — areas where there aren’t a lot of gas stations and those stations “tend to charge what they can,” inflating the price, according to McKinley. Additionally, areas with lower populations depress the demand. But he noted that Garfield County prices are

less expensive than most surrounding counties. Rio Blanco, Moffat, Eagle, Pitkin and Routt counties all posted higher average prices per gallon on Dec. 1, with Routt’s average at $2.67/ gallon. Mesa County was an exception, at $2.18/gallon. “Garfield has got it pretty good, as a function of Aspen being a draw, Carbondale being a draw, and your proximity to I-70,” he said. “If you’re traveling north, fill up in Garfield first.” In the context of the Coronavirus pandemic, “there’s a lot going on, mostly with the oil markets,” McKinley explained. The gas landscape is complex, but at its core is the basic supplydemand concept. Even though more people are using their cars to travel during the pandemic, demand is actually down because air traffic decreased greatly, and jet fuel sales are down. “Overall, demand plummeted at the same time we had a lot of supply.” However, McKinley surmised that if more people have relocated to the Roaring Fork Valley to ride out the pandemic, it might, over time, end up lowering gas prices. “It’s hard to tell. Right now, prices are artificially low. They will catch up. As soon as there’s a widespread penetration of a vaccine, I expect we’re going to see the gas prices that we saw throughout 2019, which is still fairly cheap compared to 2007. Jim Wheeler, owner of Carbondale Car Care on Highway 133, said he experienced a decrease in sales “quite a bit” in the early months of the pandemic. “Lately it’s been climbing back up,” Wheeler said. The other factor that impacted existing Carbondale gas stations in 2020 was the opening of City Market’s 14-pump station, fronting Highway 133 just north of Main Street, in July. “They tend to wipe out a lot of the smaller people, at least they did in Rifle,” Wheeler said, adding that Carbondale Car Care considered removing their pumps altogether when the City Market station opened. But he stated that the beloved service station will “try a different avenue.” “Maybe we’ll upgrade our pumps and see if we can’t stick around a little longer selling gas.” Multiple messages to City Market corporate representatives went unanswered, and managers at the nearby Roaring Fork Co-Op declined to comment for this story.

Gas prices compared All prices are per gallon for regular unleaded gas and were recorded on Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2020. 7-11 (Conoco): $2.49 Carbondale Car Care (Phillips 66): $2.49 City Market: $2.39 Cowen Center (Exxon): $2.39

Roaring Fork Co-Op (Cenex): $2.39 Thunder River Market (Phillips 66): $2.50 Catherine Store (Shell): $2.74 Source: gasbuddy.com

THE SOPRIS SUN • Carbondale’s weekly community connector • December 3 - December 9, 2020 • 3


Pay it forward

In a collaborative effort to spread holiday joy, the Town of Carbondale Recreation Department, Carbondale Arts, Carbondale Fire District, and the Carbondale Chamber’s First Friday Committee, have invited Santa Claus and his horse-drawn sleigh to cruise Carbondale from 5 to 7 p.m. on First Friday, Dec. 4. Maps will be released soon. Kiddos can write letters to Santa and drop them in the letterbox on his sleigh and patiently await a return letter from Santa’s elves before Christmas. If anyone misses the drop, letterboxes will be set up at The Launchpad, FirstBank, and the Carbondale Recreation & Community Center. Before Friday, locals can stop by The Launchpad, Rec. Center or FirstBank to pick up a free goodie bag filled with locally-made Pollinator Chocolate hot cocoa mix and other fun surprises — while supplies last.

When customers arrived at local King Soopers and City Market locations on Nov. 23, to pick up their online orders, staff delivered their bagged groceries and let them know that FirstBank had covered their entire bill. In return, FirstBank asked families to consider “giving it forward” – even if it’s just $5 – to a charity of their choice during the 11th annual Colorado Gives Day on Dec. 8. Since 2014, the annual program has picked up more than $120,000 in tabs for unsuspecting patrons. This year’s effort built on that success by covering more than $25,000 in groceries for people living in Colorado Springs, Carbondale, Denver, Dillion, and Greeley.

Ain’t no mountain high enough Have you ever wondered just how Colorado’s tallest mountains received their names? Find out during a author talk featuring Jeri Norgren and John Fielder, author and photographer of the book “Colorado’s Highest” from 5:30 to 6 p.m. on Zoom. A Q&A session will follow the presentation. Visit basaltlibrary.org for more information.

And a movie The Crystal Theatre’s walk up concession hours for the winter are 6 to 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday. And remember, you can pair your popcorn with a virtual movie through the theatre — current choices include “Zappa,” “The Donut King,” “Like Harvey Like Son,” “Harry Chapin: When In Doubt, Do Something,” “Oliver Sacks: His Own Life,” and “Jimmy Carter: Rock & Roll President.” Visit crystaltheatrecarbondale.com for more information.

To market The European-style, outdoor Redstone Holiday Market returns from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Dec. 5. Local artists will be partnering with businesses along the Boulevard to offer a wide array of unique gifts and holiday decorations.

Reduce, reuse… The City of Glenwood Springs’ new Recycling Center will open to the public on Tuesday Dec. 8, following a 2 p.m. ribbon cutting on Dec. 7. The new site adjacent to the Rio Grande Trail at 13th and Pitkin, features a drive through configuration and will be open 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. The South Canyon Landfill recycling center is currently closed while equipment is moved to the new location. The landfill will continue to have a small recycle container located at the scale house for use during the shutdown and will remain in place after the move for use by landfill patrons.

Paul Hilts' shot of a Blue Heron over the Roaring Fork River was the winner of the People's Choice Award for the 2020 Roaring Fork Watershed Photo Contest.

They say it’s your birthday Folks celebrating another trip around the sun this week include: Hannah Feder, Rochelle Norwood (Dec. 3); Carol Klein (Dec. 4); John Stroud and Mark Stover (Dec. 5); Carol Craven, Amy Kimberly, Cathleen McCourt, Collette Spears, Judy Whitmore and Frank McSwain (Dec. 6); Holly Richardson, David Dabney and Lisa Speaker (Dec. 7); Sandra McMullen and Jennifer Lamont (Dec. 8) and Jennifer Johnson (Dec. 9).

The Sopris Sun is hiring!

On the wrist Valley View Hopsital’s Valley Ortho program has a new hand and wrist surgeon: Michael Potter, MD. A board-certified, fellowship-trained orthopedic hand surgeon, Dr. Potter provides specialty care of all conditions of the hand and upper extremity, including trauma and problems of the wrist and elbow as well as on-call care for lower extremity trauma and general orthopedic issues. He will see patients out of Valley View, Eagle Healthcare, Silt Healthcare and Willits Healthcare.

Do you want to steward community discourse and storytelling in the mid and lower Roaring Fork Valley? Nestled in Mount Sopris’ shadow, The Sopris Sun is headquartered in Carbondale and serves as the area’s only nonprofit newspaper. Right now, we’re looking for our next leader at the editorial helm. If you’re a deadline-driven, newsoriented communicator you may be just who we’re looking for to fill this role. Responsibilities include: •

Editor in Chief

4 • THE SOPRIS SUN • soprissun.com • December 3 - December 9, 2020

Editorial - Oversee all editorial content of the weekly paper including editing and composing stories. Management - Coordinate and supervise freelancers including writers and photographers, as well as collaborate with the Graphic Designer and the advertising department to create the weekly paper. Community Relations - as the public face of The Sopris Sun the editor cultivates positive relationships with community members including government, businesses and other organizations. Liaise - The Editor works cooperatively with The Sopris Sun Board Directors.

To Apply: Please provide a copy of your résumé, several samples of your writing, and a cover letter that includes, in any order: • • • •

A statement describing your interest in the position. A few things you appreciate most about The Sopris Sun. Share your vision of where you would love to see the paper be in a few short years. Why you feel you are a great candidate.

Send your application materials via email, in Word or PDF format, to: board@soprissun.com by December 4, 2020. Interviews of qualified candidates will start immediately. The position will remain open until filled. Preferred start date: December 14, 2020. For a full job description, go to soprissun.com/careers-editor/

Jack the Warrior Dog By Burk Golden Special to The Sopris Sun If there is anything that unifies people more in this valley than their love of snow sports, wilderness, or natural beauty, it would have to be dogs. Dogs are an integral part of many family units in the valley, going on hikes, shopping, even to work with their owners. And while most families in the Valley were celebrating Thanksgiving at home, one small, furry friend spent his alone in the outdoors. Jack, the Scottish Terrier and Australian Cattle Dog mix, after being separated from his owner on a hike, was out in the Red Hill area without food or water for 19 days. John Rogger lost sight of his dog on the morning of Nov. 8 after falling near the Mushroom Rock trailhead. Upon spending nearly an hour trying to get back to the location where they had separated, he realized that Jack was truly missing. Erika Klyver, a friend of Rogger, has been up there and claims that the area is “steep, hard to navigate, and I see how it could be easy to lose your dog up there.” Rogger and friends later returned with Klyvers’ dog to aid in their tracking efforts, John put in 10-15 miles on foot each day searching for Jack. Rogger eventually would bruise his heels from the hours he spent looking for Jack. Rogger stated that he had a few false leads,”through online services that show lost dogs” and since Jack was microchipped in Denver, speculated that if he was found he may have been sent to Denver instead of a local shelter. Rogger started to fear that his search would span the entire state. After a nearly three-week ordeal, Jack was found near the intersection of Highway 82 and 133, by a man named Jackson. According to him, ”Jack was stuck in a tough spot geographically, pinned in by the highway and with a steep cliff behind him.” Jackson, another rescuer by the name of Avalon, and a couple with their teenage daughter all assisted the dog, before taking him to Alpine Animal Hospital for care. Rogger believes that his dog used up the last of his

energy in an effort to be found and probably would not have lasted another day out there. “I am eternally grateful for all the support we’ve had from the community. Everytime me and Pixie (Erikas’ dog) would hike up Mushroom rock, we would get involved with the other hikers to keep an eye out.” While in the wilderness, Jack lost nearly half of his body weight, suffered extreme dehydration which caused severe kidney and liver damage, impacting his enzyme levels, as well as brain swelling. The brain swelling released mucous from the dogs’ orifices, causing a bloodied nose and mouth. As a result of dehydration, Jacks’ eyes were bloodied shut. Jack is being treated with “medication that reduces the sodium levels that causes swelling in the brain.” While this process takes some time, Rogger was assured it is happening at a proper rate. The veterinarians at Alpine are taking it day by day, monitoring his health before determining when he may return home. He also has total confidence that his dog will make a full recovery. Recently, Rogger brought a dog bed from home, to assist in Jacks’ recovery. At Alpine Animal Hospital, the staff have dubbed him “Warrior Jack,” due to his unrelenting will to live. Jack the dog is 13 years old and hails from Carbondale, Illinois. He was picked straight from the litter at 8-9 weeks old by John Rogger. Rogger and Jack eventually moved to Carbondale, Colorado together in 2007, which he finds “serendipitous.” The dog has been heralded as somewhat of a local celebrity in the Valley. According to John, “He has spent time working at Four Dogs Liquor store in Willits, has been an official mascot of the patio during the summer at Venga Venga, and been touching the hearts of many people in the area. “Jack has been a great best friend of mine for almost 14 years now”, says Rogger. When Jack isn’t working for treats and love, or earning accolades at the liquor store, he helps Rogger run their own locally made artistic dog leash company, Jack Straw Leashes.

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Jack is currently recovering at Alpine Animal Hospital in Carbondale. Courtesy photos

Help Jack Jack's medical bills are quite substantial. If you would like to help, John Rogger has requested that you either purchase a handmade leash from Jack Straw Leashes or contribute to Jack's recovery fund.

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THE SOPRIS SUN • Carbondale’s weekly community connector • December 3 - December 9, 2020 • 5


If you know of someone who should be featured in “Our Town,” email news@soprissun.com or call 510-3003.

An educator to the core By Roberta McGowan Sopris Sun Staff

Francisco, London and Florence.

Educator and author Nikki Beinstein, well known for teaching at the Marble Charter School just launched a new nonprofit venture to help advanced students share and discuss their creative accomplishments. As a Valley resident of 17 years, Nikki has raised her two children Ruby, 14, and Moses, 11 — mostly in Carbondale. A: How has living in Colorado affected you? Q: I am a hiker, skier, traveller (when we finally can) and love writing. Coming here to our open and welcoming environment seems to have nudged me to explore myself much more. A: Your career has followed a winding path rather than a straight line. How has that turned out? Q: It’s interesting. All of my professional opportunities seemed to have brought me where I am today. I finally realized I am primarily an educator so that’s the direction I’m moving toward. I have worked in healthcare, finance, technology, nonprofit development,childcare and most recently as a teacher. Also, I’ve lived in Hong Kong, San

Q: You have decided to take a sabbatical from teaching. Why? A: I could see that advanced students, also called “gifted,” were not necessarily getting enough educational simulation. “These kids often just get bored,” and often never reach their full potential in a classroom setting. So I wanted to do something, and all my life and career experiences came together in 2020. And I began my next chapter.

on the website. We hope to get a wide variety of submissions, from the creative visual arts (painting, sculpting, wood carvings and photography) to written work (novel, poems and essays) to scientific experiments. Work must be completed and edited using appropriate language and grammar. Submitted materials need to encourage one focus of these three: environment (nature/science) equity (racial/social justice) or economy (innovation/growth).

Q: Tell me a bit about your new project. A: I founded “The Serious Type” nonprofit in 2020 as an online curated portal for kids ages 12 to 20 who need to express themselves in an online environment and share their ideas with others like them. Then, I gathered together a group of education experts on an Advisory Board to get the project off the drawing board and into action. Plus, we have a dedicated Board of Directors. We expect to go live on theserioustype.org during January 2021.

Q: What are your goals for “The Serious Type?” A: We hope to help young people to express their ideas in a non-judgemental environment. We’ve included a separate message board for students and teachers to communicate with each other. Our mission is to encourage kids to strive to create a happier and healthier world. We hope students from around the country and the world will participate. And we’ve already received many different types of students’ work.

Q: How do students participate and what type of their work can be submitted? A: A student can submit directly

Q: How are you reaching out? A: Word of mouth, social media, and personal connections with many other organizations

Nikki Beinstein takes a short break from her busy schedule. Photo by Roberta McGowan are critical. We really want to reach out to young people who are curious, creative and concerned and would like to help make the world a better place. Q: You also are an established author. What are your published works? A: I’m proud to say one of my books “Phlogs: Journey to the Heart of the Human

We can recommend a personalized loan or the best hiking trails. As members of the communities we serve, it’s our responsibility to know them inside and out. If you have a question, reach out. We’re here. We’re working. And we’re a neighbor you can always count on.

Talk to a personal banker today at 970-704-1012.


6 • THE SOPRIS SUN • soprissun.com • December 3 - December 9, 2020

Predicament” won a Colorado Book Award in 2009. It’s a photographic memoir about co-author George Stranahan. I also wrote “The Middle Word,” a young adult book combining historical fiction and magic realism. I was the lead editor for “A Predicament of Innocence,” also featuring essays and photographs by Stranahnan, who turned 89 in November.

Dinkel building up for sale By James Steindler Sopris Sun Correspondent

The Dinkel building, which makes up the entire north side of the 400 block of Main St. is up for sale for the first time in 30 years. Some of the current businesses have been there since before the current owner invested; and though the pandemic has brought on hard times each business has held steadfast awaiting brighter days.

Some history William Dinkel moved from Virginia to Colorado in 1880 and made his way to the Valley from Buena Vista in 1881. He and his business partner, Bob Zimmerman, made the arduous trip over Cottonwood and Taylor passes with 800 pounds of flour which they made a good profit from by selling it in Aspen. The two planned to travel to Montana next but were held up on the Flat Tops when they ran into a group of Utes who allegedly robbed them of their supplies forcing them to turn around. They returned to the site of Carbondale which had been designated as reservation land until about the time of their reappearance in 1881. They filed claims, built a dugout and hunted and sold game for a living. Soon enough they opened a store and an inn on the east side of town before it burnt down in an 1891 fire. By that time Zimmerman had already sold his share to Dinkel who subsequently built the building which carries his name to this day.

He operated a bank, a store and the post office — where he became postmaster — on the first floor and The Mt. View Hotel ran it’s business on the top floor. Dinkel served as the mayor of Carbondale and later became a state representative. According to author and historian, Len Shoemaker, the man, “Took an active part in its [Carbondale’s] civic affairs and led the movement to get water and electric lights for its residents.” Dinkel’s daughter, Anna Margaret, continued to manage the building until her passing in 1963 when her son, Wallace (or Wally) Debeque, assumed the responsibility. Debeque sold the property in 1990 to its current owner.

Ever since The commercial property has housed many small local businesses over the years; from the Floral Boutique to the Novel Tea Shop to the Black Nugget. While there is of course a tinge of uncertainty that comes with, this isn't the first time at least one of the occupants has endured a transition in proprietorship. Smack dab in the middle of the property sits the Crystal Theatre which Kathy and Bob Ezra started 35 years ago — when Debeque still owned the building. The space had previously been used as a movie theatre between sometime in the 40s through part of the 60s. The Ezras have been holding up through the pandemic by selling concessions at

their walk up window Fridays and Saturdays from 6pm-7:30pm. “We are ready to open when it’s safe to stay open,” Said Kathy, “We just can’t wait for that; it’ll be like a new day.” The couple is very fond of the current owner who has checked in on them through this new era; they hope a successor will carry on the torch. KDNK radio got its start on the upper floor of the Dinkel building in 1983; which the ‘DNK’ in its call sign refers to. The same year Main Street Gallery and The Framer opened across the hall. “Wally Debeque was the owner at the time,” recalled owner Sally Norwood. Today the gallery is still open but located just across the street at 399 Main. “We moved out of the Dinkel building in 1993,” Norwood stated. On top of the local businesses which got their start under the

It has been reborn many times over, such as when the Crystal Theatre was rennovated and reopened in the early '80s. Photo courtesy of Bob and Kathy Ezra stewardship of Dinkel’s grandson, there are nearly a dozen more located in the old building today. Steve’s Guitars, for instance, has persisted on the east side of the building since 1993. “One of the side benefits of providing music every week is our interaction with the local

community,” the historical description on Steve’s website reads. The building is listed for $4,995,000 and — despite referencing that most of the leases are under-market — it also reads that the property is a, “solid investment with good tenants in place.”

The Dinkel building was an important hub in Carbondale's early days. Photo courtesy of the Carbondale Historical Society


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Ensuring Safe Travels

community THE SOPRIS SUN • Carbondale’s 9, 3:36:09 2020PM• 7 • December 3 - December AFS-TSA-0165weekly ASE6-Print-SoprisSun-quarter pageconnector ad-v2.indd 1 11/16/2020

Have a little art star in your family? Enter the Spruce Up The Sun holiday cover design contest!

Theme: Holiday Wish Rules:

• Kids of all grades are invited to submit artwork • Paper Size: 8 1/2 x 11” • Feel free to use a variety of media • No glitter • No three-dimensional elements • Bright, bold colors are encouraged • Please write the child’s name, age, grade, school, and parent contact information on the back (not the front) of the entry


5 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 14

Drop Off:

The Launchpad, 76 S. Fourth St., Carbondale


P.O. Box 399, Carbondale CO 81623 For more information contact news@soprissun.com 970-510-0540

Carbondale’s weekly

Holiday Advertising Deadlines

p The Sun U e c u r p S ’s n e r d Chil 4 issue 2 . c e D e th r fo 8 1 Dec. Year in Review 31 issue . c e D r fo , 8 1 . c e D erlin today! b m a h C d d o T t c Conta 70-510-0246 9 | m o .c n u s s ri p adsales@so fications/ /advertise/speci


Spruce Up T h e Su n

This year’s winner



community connec tor Volume 11, Numbe r 46

| December 19, 201



Our “friends and fam ily” theme was all about com ing together, so it’s fitting that our favorite cov er design was a coll aboration. Luis Santos Candela and Marcus Trujillo are sixth graders at Carbondale Mid dle School, and according to thei r teacher they came in at lunc h to work on thei r project. The fina l pro duct has wonderf ul dep th, with plenty of deta il in the laye rs. In add ition to being festive, loca l and thematic , it’s, wel l, cute. And that’s precisely what keeps this trad ition going year after year. Of course, ther e were plenty of other spec tacu lar works of art in the run ning, so we also awarded first plac e in each grade to: Maya Annabe l (first), Morgan Dillard (second ), Lyrah Kreilin g (third), Maielle Maes (fourth) , Simona Perutkov a-R and (fifth) and Emmal ine Warner (sixth). We also awarded run ners up in each grade and an arra y mentions, includin of honorable g our youngest contestant — 3-year-old Cam ila Cruz — and our oldest — 16-yearold Bro ok-lynn Lowery, who was also the first to submit and assu age our fears of hav ing to cancel the whole thing. Che ck ‘em all out on pag es 12 and 13. Contest ants who wou ld like to pick up their orig inal artwork can stop by our office at the Third Stre et Center. We’d like to than k ever yon e who sent in wor k, as wel l as our panel of judg es who were tasked with cho osing amo ng such ama zing entries.

Happy holidays!

a Happy Holiday!

Contest winners will hav e their artwk printed in the December 24, 20 20 issue.

Our holiday issues are super popular every year. You do NOT want to miss highlighting your business or nonprofit. Most of all, you can lock in 2020 prices for the coming year. 8 • THE SOPRIS SUN • soprissun.com • December 3 - December 9, 2020


Because every tow n needs a park, a libra ry and a newspaper





THE SOPRIS SUN • Carbondale’s weekly community connector • December 3 - December 9, 2020 • 9

Is housing a privilege or a right? By James Steindler Sopris Sun Correspondent by.

Housing in this valley is not easy to come

Not only are folks having a hard time paying their rent but, there is simply not enough housing that is attainable for everyone already living here. The housing shortage will likely be aggravated by the pandemic but it’s too early to know how significant its long term impact will be. In 2019, a conglomerate of concerned local housing experts completed the final report of what they dubbed the ‘Greater Roaring Fork Regional Housing Study’. The research took many hours and the result was a detailed summary of housing needs as of 2017 as well as projections for 2027. Carbondale Trustee Heather Henry was part of the advisory committee which helped put the study together. When evaluating, “What they called the ‘gap analysis’,” — the needs in the Valley versus available housing — “They went all the way down to I believe 40% of AMI (area median income),” explained Henry, “So while not necessarily calling it section 8 or voucher housing...it by default was looking at the gap in that part of the community.” According to the study, in 2017 those making 60% or less of the AMI in the region —

which stretches from Eagle to Parachute and up to Aspen — would need 2,118 units to close the gap for that AMI category alone. It further predicted that that number would increase to 2,383 by the year 2027. “I believe that our new project, Red Hill Lofts, is going to have some,” form of subsidized housing, said Henry, “Or at least it was — whether that’s going to play out at the end of the day I’m not certain.” Carbondale has an inclusionary housing policy which can be viewed on the Town’s website. There is a lot to it, “But ultimately it’s a 20% inclusionary housing regulation,” for any housing development with over 5 units, Henry continued. “So if I build 5 housing units, one of those has to be inclusionary housing,” Henry explained. The town’s website describes the policy as a requirement that a, “Portion of all new residential development be set aside for community housing purposes as a condition of approval.” With the gap analysis, Henry stated, committee members were able to “look at whether our categories were right in terms of how developers had to deliver that 20%, (and) whether we could apply it to rental housing or not.” Garfield County Housing Authority acts as the administrator for Carbondale’s inclusionary housing units by processing and approving applications.

"People are in

a much more vulnerable position ... "

Work is wrapping up on the first phase of Thompson Park, which has five deed-restricted units starting at $306, 818 — versus $600,000 on the open market. Photo by James Steindler

What now? “We had some pretty good momentum after that study came out,” Henry stated, “The same committee and municipalities were continuing dialogue around what was next.” “The first thing that COVID did frankly was derail that,” she continued, “All housing authorities ended up in crisis mode as did most of the staff of all of the municipalities.” Henry is concerned that the pandemic will make circumstances worse. “People are in a much more vulnerable position housing wise,” she stated. “The flip side to the coin is that we’re seeing a huge explosion in real estate in the Valley,” she explained, “So the bubble is only getting worse.” People from around the world are increasingly interested in moving to the Rocky Mountains. “We are the receiver site for what

in the industry we’re calling the ‘urban exodus’,” Henry stated, “That was already happening prior to COVID but I think COVID hit the accelerator on it.” “It’s good for the real estate market but it’s definitely driving up prices,” she surmised, “So that continues to exacerbate the gap analysis in that report.” Henry sees funding as a significant hurdle to close the gap. “We’re not going to make a dent in it without more significant funding mechanisms or the ability to put together larger projects than what you would just see with our inclusionary regulations,” she stated. “I actually got an email from one of the advisory committee members today asking if it was time to start talking again,” Henry stated, “So right now that’s my greatest hope is that we can pick that conversion back up.”

The Andy Zanca Youth Empowerment Program

AZYEP believes youth have an important voice and the community deserves a chance to listen. AZYEP’s mission is to empower youth from diverse backgrounds to express themselves, build self-confidence and develop leadership skills through community broadcasting. AZYEP provides an inclusive, safe space for students to discover their voices.


Empowering youth through community broadcasting on KDNK

Celebrating 20 years!

10 • THE SOPRIS SUN • soprissun.com • December 3 - December 9, 2020

azyep.org ColoradoGives.org/AndyZancaYouthEmpowermentProgram

Partnering up to prevent evictions By Debbie Bruell Sopris Sun Correspondent

Many renters take a lot of pride in their home. Photo by Paula Mayer

Free webinar for tenants What: Colorado Poverty Law Project and Alpine Legal Services team up to teach you your rights When: 5:30 to 7 p.m. Dec. 10 Where: Virtually via tinyurl.com/RFVTenantSeminar

With both the national moratorium on evictions and federal aid through the CARES Act set to expire at the end of this month, tens of millions of Americans are at risk of being evicted. Here in the Roaring Fork Valley, a wide range of individuals and entities have been working collaboratively to help community members remain in their homes. The local Landlord Tenant Relief (LTR) Fund emerged through the Mountain Voices Project, which is composed of about 30 institutional members, including churches, schools and nonprofits from Parachute to Aspen. At the onset of the pandemic, representatives from each member institution reported on the greatest need they were seeing among their clients. Concern about paying rent topped the list. As MVP member Jon FoxRubin told The Sopris Sun, when low income families are struggling, “every extra cent they have is preserved for rent...which is why we’re seeing such a high utilization of free food resources.” The LTR Fund depends upon landlords and renters working in tandem. Tenants are required to pay landlords a third of back rent due and a third of rent for three months, and landlords are asked to forego up to a third of back rent due plus a third of future rent for three months.

The Colorado Media Project

has selected The Sopris Sun to receive matching grant funds up to $5,000 until Dec. 31st from individual supporters.

The LTR Fund fills in the remaining gaps for three months, and possibly longer. If tenants or landlords can’t afford this arrangement, they are still encouraged to apply as other sources of support may be identified. Local nonprofits vet the clients and guide them through the application process for accessing LTR Funds. The idea was borrowed from the City of Aspen, which paid one-third of the rent for qualifying commercial tenants for up to three months as part of the city’s COVID recovery effort. Major contributors include the Aspen Community Foundation, City of Glenwood Springs, Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, Eagle County and Pitkin County. Garfield County Commissioners denied MVP’s request for funding in August, but stated that they would reconsider it in the future. The Uncle Bob Foundation, which operates under the Garfield County Housing Authority, acts as the fiscal agent for the LTR Fund. A total of over $205,000 has been committed to the fund, should that amount be needed. Only about $4,250 has been dispersed so far, serving eight families and a total of 44 people, all of whom live in Garfield County. MVP continues to seek local institutions, including churches and schools, who are interested in helping to identify clients and distribute the funds. Alice Steindler, Director of MVP, told The Sun that one of the

challenges they’re facing is that for many people, it’s difficult to ask for help. “It’s human nature to want to make it on your own,” Steindler said. “These are proud people. And the prouder you are, the harder it is to ask for help.” Robert Hubbell, co-owner of the El Jebel Mobile Home Park, has partnered with his tenants to enable them to continue to pay their rent. With the help of the local nonprofits English in Action and Valley Settlement, he has distributed a list of local resources to tenants who are struggling economically and has provided help with filling out applications. “We’re really trying to work together as a team--tenants and landlords,” Hubbell told The Sun. “Our number one priority is to make sure that everyone stays in their home.” All 50 of Hubbell’s renters have been able to continue paying rent so far. He’s hopeful that he and his tenants won’t have to apply for LTR Funds, but appreciates that the funds are there “as a last resort to make sure someone is able to stay in their home-as charities run out of funds or state funding ends.” In cases where tenant-landlord communication is not so easy, Aspen Legal Services is offering free mediation services to facilitate an agreement “if possible” between landlords and tenants who are having a housing dispute caused by COVID-19.

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THE SOPRIS SUN • Carbondale’s weekly community connector • December 3 - December 9, 2020 • 11

Wilderness rescuers brace for a busy winter

By Jane C. Hu High Country News

Every winter, volunteers from Seattle Mountain Rescue are dispatched to the sites of dozens of harrowing incidents: They rescue backcountry skiers buried in avalanches, help injured hikers descend slick trails — and once, they even removed the wreckage of a singleengine plane from a mountainside. Volunteers must tackle steep, avalancheprone mountain terrain, carrying the requisite gear to ward off hypothermia. Once on the scene, they rig anchors and ropes to carry out rescues, a timeintensive project that often lasts until after dark. “I can’t think of a time I didn’t come out in a headlamp during a winter mission,” said Cheri Higman, chairperson of the organization. And this winter may be harder than usual, thanks to COVID-19. Owing to the pandemic, outdoor recreation skyrocketed this summer, and that trend is projected to continue into the winter. As a result, backcountry first responders are preparing for a potential rise in rescues, especially given the forecast for a particularly snowy winter in the Northwest. “We are anticipating there will be an uptick in accidents,” Higman said. As soon as a wilderness emergency is reported in Washington, county sheriffs dispatch search and rescue volunteers. In King County, where Seattle is located, the sheriff may call one of nine all-

volunteer units that make up the King County Search and Rescue Association. Each has its own specialty: building anchors with ropes and rigging kits for steep alpine rescues, tracking lost people, or transporting other rescuers on allterrain vehicles. The association has over 500 responders on its roster, though only about 25% of them are trained to work in snowy terrain. In addition to assisting with missions, Seattle Mountain Rescue typically holds a number of trainings and workshops throughout the year. This winter, concerned about early snow, it began training six weeks earlier than usual. But, Higman said, new volunteer enrollment has been down this year, in part because the organization had to abandon a recruitment round after the pandemic hit in the spring. Like other outdoors organizations, Seattle Mountain Rescue moved most of its training online; it’s also had to cancel in-person community workshops on treating cold injuries and training for winter navigation, which can help decrease the need for rescues. The pandemic restrictions could be a problem as more recreationists head outside. By October, the King County Search and Rescue Association had already conducted 191 rescues, compared with a total of 198 for all of 2019. Search and rescue groups in other Western states, including California, Utah and Colorado, were also stretched thin over the summer.

And this winter, many of the people hitting the slopes are likely new to backcountry adventures. With many ski areas limiting ticket sales in response to COVID-19, and resorts in New Mexico and Colorado already selling out of passes, retailers are reporting an uptick in backcountry gear sales. For instance, Evo — an action sports company with stores in Seattle, Portland, Denver and Salt Lake City, has seen its April-toOctober sales for ski-touring equipment like boots, bindings and skins increase by 120% compared to the same period in 2019. “We see customers that are looking to provide themselves with options,” said Laura Holman, Evo’s assistant buyer. Organizations that train recreationists are also preparing for a busy year, but COVID-19 has forced them to adapt. The Northwest Avalanche Center, which typically offers avalanche awareness courses to about 10,000 people annually, has pivoted to an online-only format. Similarly, The Mountaineers, a Seattlebased alpine club, has taken its basic avalanche safety classes online, with inperson field practices limited to small groups. Those courses are filling up fast, making it challenging to balance the demand with the COVID restrictions, said Mountaineers CEO Tom Vogl: “We’re all trying to figure out how we can offer as many courses as possible while continuing to contain the spread of the virus.”

Guides practiced their crevasse rescue skills on the Cowlitz glacier, Mount Rainier, Washington last year. Photo by Brooke Warren Scott Schell, the executive director of the Northwest Avalanche Center, hopes that the abrupt move to digital education will actually allow more people to take part. The center’s 14th annual Northwest Snow and Avalanche workshop went online for the first time this year, and attendance was higher than ever before. “Avalanche awareness and education in general is now more accessible than ever to people in rural areas, (who) have historically been underserved,” said Schell. Meanwhile, many of the Northwest’s best-known outdoors organizations are teaming up to coordinate a message for recreationists looking for safe but snowy fun this year. Their advice:

Always check avalanche forecasts, carry an avalanche shovel, probe, transceiver and other necessary gear, and seek training whenever possible. Schell said that it’s a common misconception that popular summer hiking trails are safe to snowshoe in the winter. “Snowshoeing is not the wintertime equivalent of hiking,” he said. “You’ve got to have a winter mindset, and that involves the ability to identify avalanche terrain, and when it’s appropriate to be there.” This story was originally published at High Country News (hcn.org) on Nov. 11, 2020.

This story was originally published at High Country News (hcn.org) on Nov. 11, 2020.


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Details: • Physician referral required. • If you do not have a physician, call Aspen Valley Primary Care at 970.279.4111. • Cost (insured) – Tests will be billed to insurance. There is no out-of-pocket expense to the patient after insurance. • Cost (uninsured) – PCR testing is free – AVH is committed to cost not being a barrier to testing. Antibody testing $150 – $200.

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Aspen Valley Primary Care’s Drive-Thru Testing Center Location: • Parking lot next to the Midvalley Health Institute at 1460 East Valley Road, Basalt Testing Hours: • Monday – Friday, 9 am – 4 pm

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Valley winter sports resorts are raring to go By Roberta McGowan Sopris Sun Staff Tune up the equipment and get the boots and cold weather clothing out of storage. Ski season is back! With a boost of cold weather and plenty of snow making, alpine, nordic, cross-country skiing, snowboarding and snowshoeing are here big time. In just a little more than two weeks, all valley resorts will be welcoming skiers and running lifts. So, pick your poison: Sunlight, Snowmass, Buttermilk, Highlands or Aspen Mountain. It’s important to note both Aspen and Sunlight mountains are adhering to pandemic protocols established by the Colorado State Department Public Health and Environment. such as masks and social distancing. Sunlight Mountain Resort in Glenwood Springs, with nearly 730 skiable acres and a 2000 ft. vertical drop, draws avid snow sports enthusiasts from the Roaring Fork Valley to Parachute from beginners to intermediate to advanced devotees. Groomed cross country and snowshoe trails total 29 kilometers (18 miles) with opportunities for all levels of participants. As explained on the resort’s website, these trails can lead to the Sunshine Meadow backcountry log cabin built in the 1800s. Troy Hawks, Sunlight sales and marketing director, “We are very excited for our 54th season to begin on Friday, Dec. 11.” “Skiing is such a unique sport; you’re constantly discovering new techniques, and snow challenges can change from day to day and run to run,” he smiled. The pandemic temporarily put on hold plans for 100 additional skiing acres of forest to the east of Perry’s Plunge. This past summer, the mountain was forced to trim back the maintenance crew by 70 percent, but employees were able to further widen Vortex, one of the new runs opened last season. Sunlight has also done some freshening up. The entire campus, Hawks announced, has been repainted. Hawks also reported the mountain is looking for additional ski instructors

Sunlight Mountain Resort will open for the season on Dec. 11. Courtesy photo and is asking people to go to sunlightmtn.com for more details. The four mountains that make up the Aspen Skiing Company (SkiCo) complex sit at the upper end of the Valley, southeast of Glenwood. Internationally recognized as one of the world’s leading destinations, Aspen usually draws visitors from around the globe, but this year is expected to be different. As Aspen Communications Manager Liz Rovira said, “We had a great Thanksgiving opening weekend. Although, currently, commercial lodging is limited to 25 percent of capacity, this year more private housing - like Airbnbs - are available.” In addition, she said, work visas were not available, so no instructors, lift operators or other employees can travel here. Foreign visitors are quite limited, but skiers from Mexico can cross the border.” Unfortunately she noted, SkiCo had to cut 30 people who were year round staff, “This was the first time that happened in 20 years.”

Several new amenities have been added on Snowmass, she reported, as the new Big Burn Lift is ready to go as a sixpack moving at a faster speed than the previous lift. Two new restaurants have been added. Sam’s, at the top of Sam’s Knob, serves up Italian food while High Alpine offers sit-down service in the former Gwyn’s space. Aspen is not selling its popular parking pass this year, The pass has allowed holders to park at any fee-based mountain parking area at no additional cost. Jeff Hanle, Aspen Ski Company vice president of communications, explained that for this unusual year, “Our pass and parking strategy this year is designed to give us a clear picture of demand and capacity as we are likely to have to manage both this season. Both are designed to guide people towards less busy times and help us manage numbers. There are a number of alternative ways to reach our mountains that are more efficient financially and environmentally. This includes carpooling, using busses and shuttles, arriving later in the day or skiing at a different mountain that does not charge for parking.” Both Aspen and Sunlight are home to vigorous children’s programs. The Aspen Valley Ski Club (AVSC) serves approximately 2000 kids ages 3 ½ to 21, and this year has seen a 10 percent increase in participation. Executive Director Mark Godomsky described AVSC’s pandemic protocol, “We are following all public health procedures such as masks and social distancing.” The club, headquartered at Highlands, plans to spread out its instruction programs over several of the resort's mountains, and limit groups to less than 10 attendees. Sunlight is home to the Buddy Werner Ski Program led by head coach Caroline Rubin which instructs children six to 12 in racing and recreational skiing. Both programs kick off Jan. 9. Rubin is also looking for more people to volunteer on Sundays. Lynn Merriam, president of the Sunlight Winter Sports Club, is also anticipating an exciting year.

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265 Main Street, Carbondale, Colorado | 970-440-2628 | SoprisLodge.com Independent Living | Assisted Living | Memory Care | Managed by THE SOPRIS SUN • Carbondale’s weekly community connector • December 3 - December 9, 2020 • 13

Cozying up to a crackling fire sounds pretty inviting on these cold, short days.

Woodshop from cover

How about chimney fires, air pollution and smoke inhalation hazards? Not so much. If you use a wood stove or fireplace, it’s key to learn before you burn. To save money, and have a safer and healthier home, remember these three tips: 1. Have a certified professional inspect and service your wood-burning unit annually. If you smell smoke in your home, something may be wrong. It’s important to clean out dangerous soot build-up to help keep it working properly and avoid chimney fires. 2. Burn dry, seasoned wood. Wet, green, painted, treated wood, and trash should never be options. Start with chemical-free fire starters and dry kindling. Maintain a hot fire and don’t let it smolder. 3. Upgrade to an efficient, EPA-approved wood stove or fireplace insert. Modern wood-burning appliances are more efficient, emitting less smoke and carbon monoxide to keep your home warmer, your fuel bill lower, and your family safer. By burning wise, you can reap all the warmth — and none of the cold reality — of your wood fire. Acostarse frente a un fuego crepitante suena bastante atractivo en estos días fríos y cortos. ES LA TEMPORADA DE LEÑA EN CARBONDALE OTRA VEZ. AQUÍ HAY 3 CONSEJOS DE LA JUNTA AMBIENTAL DE CARBONDALE.

Black walks students through different types of wood — a lesson that typically would have happened early on. Photo by Sue Rollyson Of course, social distancing is still than ever, to have a class like this in schools,” essential. The small class size, large space and he said. “It’s a skill you can rely on your whole good airflow actually makes the class more life, both for yourself and to make a living. manageable than most. Black has spacing It’s also a welcome reprieve to a lot of the kids marked out on the floor and everyone’s who have spent the better part of the last year, masked. The biggest challenge, he said, is the in front of a screen to be doing something sheer number of surfaces and objects that have with their hands.” to be sanitized after someone has touched “It's hard on everybody but it's really hard on students to have such a change at such a them. Still, it’s worth it. “This pandemic has shed some light on shaping time in their life,” he added. “Making just the fragility the system as a whole, and 2:16 things best Post 1-4 Holidayof Show.qxp_Layout 1 11/23/20 PM the Page 1 that I possibly can for the kids I think it's more important now, than more is what keeps me going.”

Holiday Show Now Open!!

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CRMS students bond over philanthropic endeavor

By Kate Phillips Sopris Sun Correspondent

As a school that prides itself on community and experiential learning, the 2020/21 school year has been quite the learning curve for Colorado Rocky Mountain School (CRMS). “There are more restrictions because of covid precautions,” Julie Wiley, Assistant Director of Admissions at CRMS said. “Our boarding students are required to stay on campus and not leave independently on the weekends, and our day students are more restricted to coming on campus during certain times. We are just wanting to be really vigilant about the spread of covid.” Accordingly, CRMS has made the difficult but necessary decision to greatly reduce gatherings; from offcampus mountain bike expeditions to all-school gatherings, students are now participating in town rides and meetings hosted by Zoom. Fortunately, students are still able to connect in-person with their small advisory groups. Wiley is the proud advisor of seven sophomore girls at CRMS. In a recent advisory meeting, Wiley sat down with her advisory group and asked them to write down what was charging their batteries, and what was draining their batteries.

“We went around the table and talked about it, and I think one of things everyone felt was that they lacked connection,” Wiley said. The group brainstormed ways to recharge their batteries before someone suggested an off-campus bike ride for lunch. The girls unanimously agreed, and that weekend they set out for a rainy, and yet liberating, bike ride to Wiley’s residence for brunch. Spread out around Wiley’s back porch, the girls were able to set their worries aside for the moment and enjoy a blissful morning together. As the brunch drew to a close, the girls instantly started asking when they could gather again, so when Wiley suggested a volunteer opportunity the girls took the idea and ran with it.

Young humanitarians

Since volunteering in person was not an option, the group collectively came up with the idea to do an oncampus fundraiser that would benefit the local, nonprofit organization Advocate Safehouse Project (ASP). ASP is the only nonprofit in Garfield County that provides bilingual services (e.g., shelter, food, and financial advice) to survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault in the county. Additionally, ASP provides a 24-hour crisis hotline and emergency


shelter for survivors in crisis. “With COVID, so many people are at home right and the resources that ASP provides to women and children of domestic abuse and sexual assault are greater than ever,” Wiley said. “The girls thought that was a really wonderful cause because it did relate to a really timely need here in our area.” After some quick thinking, the girls came up with the idea to sell Candy Cane Grams (CCG) - a handdelivered, personalized note attached to a candy cane. Over the course of two lunch periods, amidst end-of-term tests and a long break looming, the girls gathered all the notes, attached them to candy canes, and delivered them to the recipient’s mailboxes just in time to send students, faculty, and staff a moment of joy. For Wiley, the CCG was a winwin situation. At $1 apiece, they raised $350 for ASP and successfully helped build more community by spreading campus-wide cheer. And the cherry on top? The girls were able to recharge their batteries by spending more time with each other. “It’s always really nice to do something that benefits other people, and we grew really close doing this,” Willa Berry, a student in Wiley’s group said. “When we were handing out the candy cane grams it was fun and a really nice bonding experience.”

CRMS students spread a little holiday cheer by delivering sweet treats to benefit Advocate Safehouse Project. Courtesy photo Berry, like her fellow classmates, is no stranger to humanitarian work. This past semester she participated in a work crew group that apprenticed with different equine therapy programs in the area. She also hopes to go to med-school. Reflecting upon the work she did with her classmates, Berry believes it is absolutely possible for younger students to make a big difference.

“Take advantage of every moment that you are given to help people out, or to do something better for the community or environment,” Berry said. “Because at the end you’re not only helping other people, but it feels nice to be able to help people and know you’re making a change.” Visit advocatesafehouseproject.org to learn more about how you can support ASP this holiday season.



NOV 30th - DEC 4th

199 Main Street CARBONDALE 970.963.7190 www.HarmonyScott.com

THE SOPRIS SUN • Carbondale’s weekly community connector • December 3 - December 9, 2020 • 15

16 • THE SOPRIS SUN • soprissun.com • December 3 - December 9, 2020

Arbaney Pool project forges ahead

By Roberta McGowan Sopris Sun Staff

In a unanimous vote, Basalt Town Council approved the contract with Rudd Construction for the Arbaney pool improvements with the contingency for Town Attorney Jeff Conklin and Town Manager Ryan Mahoney to review the potential need for a site plan review or exemption. Before the vote, members analyzed whether to go ahead with the $3.3 million full boat with all proposed amenities or instead choose the less costly $2.6 million proposal which would trim down the number and selection of particular amenities and look for additional value engineering. No choice was made. Improvements include pools, playground, public restrooms,energy efficiency and other upgrades to be phased in over time. Items considered for removal in the lower cost option include enhancing locker rooms by painting rather than tiling the walls and eliminating some shade areas. Mechanical equipment will not be affected. The proposal came initially through the Basalt Parks and Open Space and Trails Committee (POST) which makes recommendations on suggested park improvements and the use of the Town’s 1% open space sales tax. POST, according to committee officials, has had Arbaney Pool projects on its highest priority list for a number of years. Jason Groves, planning department consultant, noted, “We did our best to try and make a more affordable proposal without devastating the project.” Reflecting on the proposal cost. Councilman Bill Infante stressed, “We were led to believe we could do the entire plan for $1.6 million. But we've learned everything is expensive including cement and skilled labor.” Councilman David Knight added, “We’ve learned lessons here.” He further emphasized that the pool and

Courtesy graphic its improvements together are significant community amenities. As a follow up, Mayor Bill Kane then recommended Basalt should engage a contractor to firm up pricing for upcoming projects before formal bids are requested. In response to concerns about how to fund the project, Kane advised that Basaltmay be paying off a loan at two percent interest rate. But, he said the Town may get a return of three to four percent if the appropriated funds are carefully invested. As to which of the two project options should be selected, member Gary Tennenbaum explained, “I’m in favor of going with the full plan, and these are the costs. I don’t think it’s going to get any cheaper.” Additionally, Finance Director Christy Hamrick’s report indicated that Basalt’s sales tax revenues have increased by over $700,000 this year.

Give thanks at home.

Trustees approve annexation, extension By John Colson Sopris Sun Correspondent

The Carbondale Board of Trustees have approved for a new self-storage complex at the north end of town, and agreed to allow another project more time to finish installing public improvements like utility lines, public trails, street lights and landscaping. It all came during an online meeting on Nov. 24, which was held after The Sopris Sun's Thanksgiving deadline. The final approval of development plans for the 590-unit self-storage project, known as the Eastwood 133 LLC, gives the go-ahead for a 2.6-acre site at 0430 Highway 133, between a tire store and an Xcel power substation. The plan also calls for construction of a small office where minimal retail sales will be allowed, and an apartment for an onsite manager. An improvements agreement comes with the expectation that the project developers will complete the installation of public improvements by November 2022, and will finish building the complex by November 2023. Thanks to an extensive review process — which touched on landscaping and a pedestrian walkway in front of the property — there was little new discussion among the trustees and no input from the public. After a relatively short presentation by Town Planner Janet Buck, who said the Town and the developers “seem to be in concert” regarding the present status of the project's application, the application and related documents were approved unanimously by the board. “Well, that was quick,” remarked Mayor Dan Richardson at one point, after he had said

to all involved, “Ladies and gentlemen, a great project, and we wish you luck.” Also approved was permission for the developers of a mixed-use project — involving 115 residential units and a smattering of commercial spaces located just south of the new City Market — to take more time to finish up the installation of improvements. The developers, Briston Peterson and Sopris Engineering, had contacted the Town by letter on Nov. 13, asking that the deadline for improvements be extended from its original date of Nov. 1 of this year to June 1, 2021. According to the letter, work on improvements “began later than expected due to scheduling conflicts” involving completion of the nearby grocery store project. Buck reported that the Town has been assured by ANB Bank, which issued a letter of credit to the developers, guaranteeing the completion of the public improvements, also has been extended. “The purpose of this extension really has to do with the connecting path that's going to go from Main Street to the front door of City Market, as well as the trees on the south side along Main Street,” Peterson explained. “Our business goal is to build these (the 11 buildings in the project) as fast as we can absorb them (meaning get them occupied once they are finished).” But, he added, it is possible that he might ask for another extension at a later date depending on the real estate market and local economy's ability to get the buildings occupied. The trustees approved the extension unanimously.


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THE SOPRIS SUN • Carbondale’s weekly community connector • December 3 - December 9, 2020 • 17

GOVERNMENT BRIEFS GarCo Fire Departments working together As rates of COVID-19 increase, the fire and EMS chiefs of Colorado River Fire Rescue, Carbondale & Rural Fire Protection District, Glenwood Springs Fire Department, and Grand Valley Fire Protection District are committed to continued collaboration, taking proactive measures to ensure service continuity. Through this partnership, they will be able to share resources and provide additional emergency medical support if COVID-related calls begin to overwhelm the 911 system. They continue to adopt new and proactive measures to protect you and our personnel. As they did during the exceptional drought conditions, the departments will be strategically placing ambulances throughout our communities to respond to calls more readily.

AVLT receives GOCO grant Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO) awarded Aspen Valley Land Trust (AVLT) $399,665 to improve five outdoor community spaces to get more students learning outside and relieve the pressure on our outdoor places caused by COVID-19. With this GOCO funding, AVLT will expand access and infrastructure at Chapin Wright Marble Basecamp, a 47-acre property owned by AVLT thanks to community fundraising in 2015. Secondly, the grant will help AVLT restore Marble Children’s Park, which will include planting native grasses, installing an irrigation system, rebuilding benches, and defining parking areas. AVLT will also improve the Silt River Preserve, the open space area that is home to Highwater Farm, which employs local students to grow produce for distribution to

food banks. Finally, in Carbondale, AVLT will complete restoration projects at the new Red Hill trailhead and Riverfront Park to improve access for residents and visitors.

Pitkin County selects interim Public Health Director The interim Public Health (PH) Director position has been filled by internal candidate and current PH team member, Jordana Sabella. She will officially take the lead when current PH Director, Karen Koenemann completes her transition out on Dec. 4. Sabella has been leading the Community Liaison effort during the COVID pandemic. As part of the Public Health teams’ transition, Laryssa Dandeneau will fill the position left vacant by Sabella.

COGCC approves mission change The Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC) has unanimously approved a series of new rules to update its mission and protect public health and safety and wildlife from oil and gas development. Notable victories include: A new 2,000-foot setback from Coloradans’ homes and schools; increased protections for Disproportionately Impacted Communities; comprehensive protections for Colorado’s wildlife and habitat; a ban on routine venting and flaring; expanded protections for water supplies, including greater testing and reporting requirements and robust Cumulative Impacts and Alternative Location Analysis requirements. The COGCC only needs to finalize updates to its financial assurance and reclamation rules, which is anticipated in the spring of 2021.

Want to get involved? Colorado Springs a finalist for Space Command U.S. Senator Cory Gardner (R-CO) applauded the announcement that Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs has been selected as a finalist to be the permanent home to U.S. Space Command headquarters. Peterson Air Force Base is the current provisional location for U.S. Space Command headquarters, and Gardner has pushed the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) to permanently reestablish U.S. Space Command in Colorado to harness the state’s existing military assets to coordinate space operations for the U.S. military and address emerging threats in space. Colorado was the first home of the U.S. Space Command when it was previously established at Peterson Air Force Base in 1985. Today, Colorado continues to possess the trained military personnel and technical expertise necessary to assume the responsibilities of a Unified Combatant Command for space and the space-related responsibilities currently assigned to United States Strategic Command.

Sheriff offers drug disposal The Garfield County Sheriff ’s Office has installed a “Safe Station” for the safe and secure disposal of unwanted Pharmaceuticals. The steel box is located in the entry foyer at 107 Eighth St. in Glenwood Springs. Access is available weekdays during regular business hours. The public is welcome to dispose of; controlled substances, over the counter and prescription medications, prescription patches, ointments, and vitamins. The container is not intended for the disposal of marijuana products or sharps. DETERRA, “Drug Deactivation System” kits are also available at-home deactivation and disposal of medications.

Contact your elected officials about the issues that matter to you Senator Michael Bennet 261 Russell Senate Office Bldg. Washington, DC 20510 (202) 224-5852

Senator Cory Gardner 354 Russell Senate Office Bldg. Washington, DC 20510 (202) 224-5941

Congressman Scott Tipton 218 Cannon HOB Washington, DC 20515 (202) 225-4761

CO Senator Bob Rankin 200 E Colfax, 346 Denver, CO 80203 (303)866-5292

CO Rep Perry Will 200 E Colfax, 07 Denver, CO 80203 (303)866-2949


LIFT-UP ASPEN PANTRY: NOW OPEN! By Appointment Only for Food Bag Pick-up To Schedule Call 970.544.2009 Tuesday-Friday 11 a.m.-5:20 p.m. Saturdays 12-5:20 p.m. Christmas Week: Open Tues. 12/22 & Wed. 12/23


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MOBILE: Mondays 2-4 p.m. Third Street Center


MOBILE: Thursdays 2-4 p.m. Christmas Week: Monday 12/21, 2-4 p.m. Glenwood Church of Christ, 260 Soccer Field Rd. EXTENDED TABLE: Monday-Friday 5-6 p.m. First United Methodist Church, 824 Cooper Ave.


MOBILE: Wednesdays 2-4 p.m. Cristo La Roca, 880 Castle Valley Blvd.


MOBILE: Fridays 2-4 p.m. Christmas Week: Tuesday 12/22, 2-4 p.m. Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints EXTENDED TABLE: Tuesdays & Thursdays 5-6 p.m. Rifle United Methodist Presbyterian Church, Lovell Bldg.


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Get Involved The Town of Carbondale Boards and Commissions have the following vacancies: • Parks and Recreation Commission • Board of Adjustments • Tree Board • Carbondale Historic Preservation • Planning and Zoning Commission Contact: Kae McDonald 970-510-1248 kmcdonald@carbondaleco.net

Food Distribution DEC 24 – JAN 3: •• No LIFT-UP Admin, Thrift Store & Food Pantries Closed INFO: • No identification is necessary. • Dates subject to change in the event of inclement weather or holidays. • This institution is an equal opportunity provider & employer.


Visit LIFTUP.org for secure online donations or to volunteer. MAILED DONATIONS: LIFT-UP, P.O. Box 1928, Rifle CO 81650 VOLUNTEER HOTLINE: 970.456.2804

18 • THE SOPRIS SUN • soprissun.com • December 3 - December 9, 2020

Applications: https://www.carbondalegov.org/government/boards_&_commissions

Post office desperate for more mail carriers By Olivia Emmer Sopris Sun Correspondent

Several days in November there was a line out the front door of the Carbondale post office. Complaints swirled about potential mail delays, particularly during election season. Now, as the Christmas holiday season has begun — traditionally a hectic time for any post office — the new Carbondale Postmaster, Kim Ballantine, is anticipating another overwhelming onslaught of packages. Ballantine became postmaster in July, after the previous postmaster, Reza Tehrani, took over Aspen’s post office. “The challenge has been that the parcel volume in Carbondale since the pandemic has tripled, but the staffing has not,” remarked Ballantine in a recent interview. She estimated that about 75 percent of the packages that move through the Carbondale post office are from Amazon. “A normal delivery for us for Amazon might be 12 pallets a day. We’re getting upwards of 30 pallets a day,” Ballantine reported. This places a strain not only on carriers, but on storage space. In addition to the tripling of parcel volume, postal service staff have periodically been out on quarantine, reducing available man power. “I can’t seem to hire anybody,” Ballantine lamented. “Since I’ve been here, there’s been a banner outside. I have offered positions. We really need

carriers badly, we’re advertising for it constantly, and we just can’t seem to get anybody that wants to work delivery here in Carbondale.” Those interested in employment can apply at usps.com/careers, according to Ballantine. “I need carriers, and I will hire them. I will hire them” she said. An often-reported reason for difficulty staffing Roaring Fork Valley post offices is the nationally-managed pay structure for the United States Postal Service, which may be a mismatch for a rural community with a high cost of living. Despite this challenge, Ballantine is optimistic about careers with the Postal Service, saying, “I’m 26 years in, and it has afforded me a lot of other things. I mean, the benefits are wonderful. I think that it’s a good opportunity for someone, especially someone who may not have a strong educational background or someone who is just starting out in life. It put me through college.”

Fall’s ‘mail-strom’ In late October and early November, there were frequent grumblings on social media from Carbondale residents wondering if something was up with their mail. According to Ballantine, several factors collided to create a challenging time for the post office. First was the already-increased parcel volume, likely connected to the pandemic; second was the increase in political mail, including ballots, which were given top priority in sorting and delivery, along with all

other first class mail; third was an Amazon Prime day, which took place on Oct. 1314, increasing the already high volume of parcels; and fourth was the early snow storm that fell in the last week of October, delaying the movement of packages from regional mail centers and creating treacherous conditions for local carriers. Ballantine was adamant that her team had not missed any deliveries. She said that despite the convergence of problems, she and her team were devoted to their mission, delivering until late into the night, often in their own vehicles, to make sure packages, and especially ballots, were delivered. Ballantine said that even she was out there regularly in her blue Toyota 4Runner, delivering mail, and handdelivering ballots to election centers. Ballantine was cheerful about her new role and her new community. (She moved to Carbondale from Charleston, South Carolina, in part to be nearer to her daughter, a teacher in Denver.) She said volume is likely to continue increasing through the holiday gifting season and urged the community to ship early to buffer against delays caused by high volumes and winter weather. And she says she wants to know when things aren’t going right. She’s in the process of replacing the troubled phone system, which she says often features a busy signal, even when not in use. Ballantine encouraged community members to reach out directly to Delivery Supervisor Hayley Failing with any delivery-related issues.

Postmaster Kim Ballantine took charge of the Carbondale post office in July. Photo by Olivia Emmer


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970.945.9300 Give Today: www.youthzone.com/donate THE SOPRIS SUN • Carbondale’s weekly community connector • December 3 - December 9, 2020 • 19

Quarry proposes leaving relocated creek where it is

By Heather Sackett Aspen Journalism

A mining company that violated the Clean Water Act is proposing as a solution the very move that broke federal law in the first place: making the relocation of a creek permanent. Representatives from local groups expressed frustration that the permitting process for the creek relocation is happening after the fact, and they said they plan to submit comments to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the agency overseeing the permit application. In March, the Army Corps determined that Colorado Stone Quarries (CSQ) — the operator of the Pride of America Mine above the town of Marble — violated the Clean Water Act when it moved Yule Creek to make way for a mining road without obtaining a permit from them. CSQ is now retroactively applying for that permit, known as a 404 individual permit, and presenting seven different alternatives for remedying the situation. CSQ says it believed in good faith that the work did not require a permit. “It’s a classic case of asking for forgiveness after doing something they shouldn’t have done,” said Dale Will, a board member of the Crystal Valley Environmental Protection Association (CVEPA). “They can’t just physically restore it and call it done. There needs to be some kind of ongoing monitoring to ensure the fully ecological functioning of the creek is achieved.” Representatives from Pitkin County Healthy Rivers have expressed concern that moving the creek could have kicked up sediment, which could harm fish habitat downstream.

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20 • THE SOPRIS SUN • soprissun.com • December 3 - December 9, 2020

In its permit application, the quarry outlines seven potential alternatives: no action; mining somewhere else; constructing a bridge over Yule Creek; renegotiating a right of way with Gunnison County; returning the creek to its former location, on the west side of a ridge; leaving the creek where it is; or rediverting the creek to an elevated western channel using 180 feet of culvert. But the company deems only the last three of these options feasible. “Following a practicability evaluation, only alternatives 5, 6 and 7 are deemed reasonable alternatives that appropriately balance the execution of CSQ’s long-term mining plan with environmental and public interests,” the application reads. Of the three, CSQ’s preference is to leave Yule Creek in its current alignment — on the eastern side of Franklin Ridge — saying it is a reasonable and practical choice that limits impacts and results in the closest return to pre-diversion conditions for the stream. “Alternative 6 provides the most efficient, environmentally sound option for site-wide reclamation and is the only alternative that does not require another diversion, i.e., re-diversion of Yule Creek,” the permit application reads.

Public comment The permit application will be open for public comment through Dec. 16, a deadline that was extended by a month at the request of the Crystal River Caucus. Caucus chair John Emerick said after reviewing the quarry’s application, he agrees that since the damage has already been done, leaving Yule Creek in its current eastern

Marble blocks strapped to flatbed trailers are ready for transport. The blocks were cut from the quarry three miles up the winding dirt road. Photo by Heather Sackett

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Yule Creek now flows on the east side of Franklin Ridge because mine operators moved it without a permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Photo by Heather Sackett alignment is probably the best course of action. “I’m tending to agree with alternative 6, which is the stone quarry’s preferred alternative, just because it does get the channel away from a lot of the active mining and away from the area where there was a previous diesel spill,” Emerick said. Emerick’s comments do not necessarily reflect the official stance of the caucus; the caucus decided at its Thursday meeting to submit comments in support of protecting and enhancing Yule Creek and the Crystal River Watershed. The Army Corps will have the final say on what should be done to the creek. The quarry site and Yule Creek are in Gunnison County, but the creek is a tributary of the Crystal River, which flows through Pitkin County. “We want to make certain any remedial actions required by the Army Corps are properly designed and carried out so they don’t result in negative impacts downstream on the Crystal River,” said caucus board member Kate Hudson at Thursday’s caucus meeting. In the fall of 2018, CSQ diverted a 1,500foot section of Yule Creek from its natural channel on the west side of Franklin Ridge, a rock outcropping, to the east side of the ridge so it could build an access road. Operators piled the stream bed with fill material, including marble blocks. Although this move probably spared Yule Creek the impacts of a diesel spill in October 2019, it was done without the proper permits or oversight, according to the Army Corps. Under Section 404 of the Clean Water Act, a project requires a permit from the Army Corps if it includes the discharge of dredged or fill materials into waters, such as rivers, streams and wetlands. In this case, the company applying for the permit after the fact constitutes the enforcement action. CSQ was fined $18,600 by the state Division of Reclamation, Mining and Safety (DRMS) for

the 5,500-gallon diesel spill. The spill complicates the creek relocation because moving it back to where it was would put it into the area where the spill took place, which is now the site of ongoing remediation and monitoring. According to Susan Nall, chief of the Colorado West Section of the Army Corps, this 404 permit application is different than most that her office receives because CSQ is asking for permission to do the work after the fact. Nall said the Army Corps’ goal is to process permit applications within 120 days. Quarry General Manager Daniele Treves said in a prepared statement that the company has made a number of improvements over the past year to reduce the risk of future diesel spills and to improve response actions if an issue should occur, including updating and enhancing training and reporting procedures. The statement said monthly water-quality monitoring has found that no diesel fuel has been detected in Yule Creek and the current alignment of the creek provides the greatest separation between the waterway and active mining operations. But Will said CVEPA’s concerns go beyond the immediate issues of the diesel spill and stream relocation. In 2016, DRMS granted the quarry a permit for a 114-acre expansion for a total of 124 permitted acres. According to CSQ, there are enough marble reserves contained in its six galleries to continue mining at the current rate for more than 100 years. “I think that quarry is here to stay,” Will said. “CVEPA is concerned that the magnitude of that operation under that new permit is a lot larger than anyone realized. If they cannot be brought around to a more responsible philosophy of operations, it’s just going to continue to be one mess after the next.”


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Guest Speaker Doug Goldsmith, Waste Management State of Recycling December 16, 2020

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Pre-order at ting.com/roaringfork THE SOPRIS SUN • Carbondale’s weekly community connector • December 3 - December 9, 2020 • 21

Discuss ‘The Downstairs Girl’ and meet the author Review by Lisa Detweiler New Castle Branch Library Associate In her 2019 young adult novel “The Downstairs Girl,” author Stacey Lee tells the story of Jo Kuan, a 17-year-old young woman of Chinese American descent living in Atlanta, Georgia, in the late 1800s. Jo works as a hat maker and lady’s maid and the pseudonymous author of a newspaper advice column for genteel Southern ladies, while living secretly below a newspaper print shop. Old Gin, who came from China to labor on a plantation during Reconstruction, is the only parent she has ever known and has educated her. Jo is smart and spunky and moves through all parts of Atlanta’s society, from plantations to shops to fixers and gamblers. Jo’s life is filled with people who are kind, cruel, generous, secretive, weak and strong. She works hard to uncover the mystery of her past and to determine her future, in the face of many barriers. Lee writes dialogue and description specific to the time and place in which the story is set, but also writes with a unique and imaginative style. For example, Lee describes Jo leaving a house after an emotional conflict as “The front door fights me, and the paved stones of the driveway scheme to trip my feet.”

The virtual era offers a chance for teens to connect with "The Downstairs Girl" author Stacey Lee. Lee uses Jo’s newspaper advice column to show the issues in society, especially the struggles women and people of color face, as well as to show Jo’s sharp sense of humor. For example, many people thought that women should not ride the newly invented bicycles.

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Jo, as Miss Sweetie, advises “Bring on the odorless horse! They don’t need feeding on the front end or shoveling on the back end…. Ladies, why should men have all the fun? There is no greater thrill than that which comes from captaining one’s own ship through the waters



of one’s choosing…. And to those who call women who ride bicycles vulgar, may your iron corsets...not weigh you down while the rest of us sail the freedom machines into the twentieth century.” In a November 2019 interview with Lakshmi Gandhi of NBC

News, Lee stated that “Historical fiction is really the only way we can time travel. It’s a way of going back and feeling immersed in a place and time that you would never have access to without the vehicle of the book. If I can get people interested in history after the story, that’s definitely a win for me.” In addition, historical and other fiction can, like The Downstairs Girl, show us the universality of the human experience. A skilled author helps us feel the characters’ joy, despair, satisfaction, frustration, determination and anger. Reading a book can give us empathy for both fictional characters and real life people whose lives might on the surface appear different than ours. In fact, Garfield County Library’s “Deeper Than Our Skins” virtual teen book club has been discussing books each month (including this one) that offer points of connection across time and cultures. On Dec. 15, all teens can meet virtually with Stacey Lee as part of this book club. Teens can pick up a free copy of The Downstairs Girl at any Garfield County Library, or download the eBook or eAudiobook. This discussion is free and open to all teens. Visit gcpld.org/lee to register and join the discussion or download a copy of the book.


Whether it’s $5 or $500, your donation will go to help underwrite advertising for nonprofits and struggling businesses in 2021.


Schedule your GIFT through Colorado Gives

$1 from every sale on Monday, Dec. 7 will be donated to KDNK on Colorado Gives Day. Soprissun.com/donate For more info contact Todd Chamberlin adsales@soprissun.com 970-510-0246




WWW.HIGHQROCKIES.COM | 844-420-DANK (3265) 22 • THE SOPRIS SUN • soprissun.com • December 3 - December 9, 2020

carbondale clay center PRESENTS






THE SOPRIS SUN • Carbondale’s weekly community connector • December 3 - December 9, 2020 • 23

24 • THE SOPRIS SUN • soprissun.com • December 3 - December 9, 2020

WHERE IS THIS? You've seen these places before, haven't you? The first person to email news@soprissun.com and let us know where will win a gift card! Photos by Roberta McGowan

THE SOPRIS SUN • Carbondale’s weekly community connector • December 3 - December 9, 2020 • 25


‘We won’t even have to think’ From the archives of The Valley Journal and Sopris Sun

Dec. 4, 1980

Ladies’ Day Join us Thursday, December 3rd Shop our amazing selection of Christmas trees, wreaths, garlands, ornaments, decorations, poinsettias and gifts!

We are offering a discount of 15% off all holiday items (excluding Christmas trees) that day. We can’t pour you a glass of wine but we would love to see you and show you all our favorite new holiday items.

Our CHRISTMAS SHOPPE has it all!

Plans for a direct route from Carbondale to Sunlight via Dry Park were on the back burner as commissioners concentrated on potential oil shale and energy growth elsewhere in the county. Despite pressure from the Forest Service and Mid-Continent to improve timber access, GarCo was no closer to obtaining the necessary easements than it had been when the plans were drawn up the previous year. In other news… With census figures placing it above 2,000 residents, Carbondale could officially be considered a “city” by some metrics.

Dec. 6, 1990 A tongue-in-cheek column by G. Johnston shared a conversation about the death of books thanks to video adaptations. “The school systems are forever plugging the importance of reading and all the time they’re dumping their textbooks in favor of the new laserdisc technology,” the banter went. “You won’t even have to read a menu in the future. It will be a computer terminal that transmits your order directly to the kitchen. And all those old farts who insist on getting their facts and kicks from books will be silly sentimentalists who just don’t want to let go of the past. They’ll be plodding along trying to ingest info at a rate that we will be trilling

just by staying glued to our monitors. We won’t even have to think.” In other news… A brand-new Jeep Cherokee Sport was advertised for $16,603.

Nov. 30, 2000 Basalt trustees were slated to review the long debated 26-acre Willits Town Center development even as Carbondale officials worked on a site plan presentation for the Crystal River Marketplace. Locals feared that the two “new urbanist” mixed-use projects would offer inadequate affordable housing to furnish its commercial workers. (The former was nearing reality, while the latter would be reenvisioned for two more decades.) In other news… Xcel Energy’s wind power program was expanding to Carbondale.

Dec. 2, 2010 Jason White penned a letter questioning the lack of concern over the 24.5-acre Village at Crystal River development. He contrasted the lack of pushback to the citizen referendum of a proposal on the same property six years before. (The VCR was ultimately shot down in a public vote, but the new City Market and its surroundings echo the design — just permitted separately.) In other news… Carbondale and Basalt fire protection districts eyed a possible merger (but it didn’t take).

Best way to warm up after playing in the cold

December’s Special Cranberry-Pomegranate Body Wrap Private Mineral Bath Day pass to Our Historic Vapor Caves “A Day at the Spa” $109

No Walkins Please Call for Appointments

Give your favorite gardener an Eagle Crest GIFT CARD and let them dream of spring!

400 Gillespie Drive, El Jebel, CO 81623 970-963-1173 WWW. EAGLECRESTNURSERY.COM




MONDAYS-SATURDAY 10 am - 6 pm SUNDAYS 10 am - 5 pm 26 • THE SOPRIS SUN • soprissun.com • December 3 - December 9, 2020

Historic Underground Vapor Caves

For Information & Reservations call 970-945-0667 • yampahspa.com Spa Open 9-9 Salon Open 9-7 • Gift Certificates Available at Our Website

Cool Brick Studios

photography • film • video 360° virtual tours


86 S 3rd St. Carbondale, Colorado

world-class multimedia studio

Audio and visual excellence all under one roof !



ORDINANCE NO. 13 Series of 2020 AN ORDINANCE OF THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES OF THE TOWN OF CARBONDALE, COLORADO, PROVIDING FOR THE ANNEXATION OF THE TOWN OF CARBONDALE, COLORADO, OF PROPERTY LYING OUTSIDE OF BUT ADJACENT TO THE TOWN OF CARBONDALE, IN THE COUNTY OF GARFIELD, COLORADO. NOTICE: This Ordinance was introduced, read, and adopted at a regular meeting of the Board of Trustees of the Town of Carbondale, Colorado, on November 24, 2020. This Ordinance shall take effect thirty (30) days after publication of this notice. The full text of said Ordinance is available to the public at www. carbondalegov.org or at the office of the Town Clerk, 511 Colorado Avenue, Carbondale, Colorado, during normal business hours. THE TOWN OF CARBONDALE By: s/s Dan Richardson, Mayor ORDINANCE NO. 14 Series of 2020 AN ORDINANCE OF THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES OF THE TOWN OF CARBONDALE, COLORADO, APPROVING AN APPLICATION OF EASTWOOD 133, LLC TO INITIALLY ZONE PROPERTY AS PART OF THE COMMERCIAL/ RETAIL/WHOLESALE (CRW) ZONE DISTRICT, FOR MAJOR SITE PLAN REVIEW APPROVAL TO DEVELOP A 590-UNIT SELF-STORAGE FACILITY (INCLUDING INTEGRATED OFFICE), FOR A CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT TO ALLOW AN INTEGRATED RESIDENCE, AND FOR CONFIRMATION OF STATUTORY VESTED RIGHTS NOTICE: This Ordinance was introduced, read, and adopted at a regular meeting of the Board of Trustees of the Town of Carbondale, Colorado, on November 24, 2020. This Ordinance shall take effect thirty (30) days after publication of this notice. The full text of said Ordinance is available to the public at www.carbondalegov.org or at the office of the Town Clerk, 511 Colorado Avenue, Carbondale, Colorado, during normal business hours. THE TOWN OF CARBONDALE By: s/s Dan Richardson, Mayor


Runners trotted through either the 1 mile or 5K course on Thanksgiving day. Staggered start times allowed for extra space between runners during the race. Photos by Laurel Smith

DIRECTORY Practicing minimal contact check-in.


970-963-3891 970-963-3891

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bile ServiceYou’re not alone if you’re feeling life’s are overwhelming right now. Availabchallenges le In-person and tele-health (Zoom) appointments available to treat Anxiety, Depression, and Trauma.

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Thinking about selling your home? Contact me today for a free market analysis! Ingrid Wussow 970.404.5105


Ericka Anderson, MA LPC

208 Midland Avenue, Basalt | (970) 309-7549 erickaanderson812@gmail.com | thehealinggrove.com

We Sell Tires! Come to Sunburst for your Winter tire changeover!

We are open Monday through Saturday from 8am-5pm and Sunday’s 9am-4pm (car washes only).

970-963-8800 745 Buggy Circle in Carbondale w w w. s u n b u r s t c a r c a r e . c o m


Carbondale Acupuncture Center Serving the valley since 1997 Acupuncture Massage Therapy  Herbal Medicine  

Gift certificates available! Downtown by Sopris Park | 704-1310

THE SOPRIS SUN • Carbondale’s weekly community connector • December 3 - December 9, 2020 • 27

You can make a difference. In a time when we're all looking for ways to support our community, we encourage you to keep shopping locally this holiday season and to use your Alpine Bank Loyalty Debit Card. Remember that every time you use it Alpine Bank donates 10 cents to nonprofits right here. *Alpine Bank debit cards are available with no annual fee to individuals with an Alpine Bank checking account.

shop local




He for e Holidays Celebration

You can make 12 Days of Adtiоs! a difference.

We’d love to see all In a time when all looking for ways to of our shelter petswe're go Homeour for thecommunity, Holidays! support we encourage you to

December 12th- 23rd invite keep shopping locally this holiday season and to a new pet into your holiday and give them a se yourtradition Alpine Bank Loyalty Debit Card. Remember home for only $12. that every time you SEE ADOPTABLE PETS: use it Alpine Bank donates 10 COLORADOANIMALRESCUE.ORG cents to nonprofits right here.

Stuff e Stockings

*Alpine Bank debit cards are available with no annual fee to individuals with an Alpine Bank checking account.

Are you in the giving spirit?

Help us care for our shelter pets and animals in need within our community by providing unopened food, toys, beds, catnip, and treats. Collection bins located at: • RJ Paddywacks Pet Outfitter • Alpine Bank Carbondale • INDEPENDENCE High Tails Dog &• COMMUNITIES Cat Outfitters • COMPASSION • INTEGRITY • LOYALTY • Dog Holidays Pet Resort • Skyline Ranch & Kennels.



Aspen Strong’s goal is to break the silence on suicide and mental health in the Valley. AspenStrong.org offers a safe, anonymous and confidential place to connect with mental health support resources.




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