Jim and Katherine Compestine always pick up a Parks and Recreation Department brochure before they plan their annual vacation.
For more than 10 years, they picked up the booklet in Steamboat Springs. Now, they don't have to go any farther than Craig City Hall.
The Compestine's are two of several area senior citizens who spend their summers tooling across Colorado as part of recreation department programs aimed at seniors.
"There really wasn't anything else to do for people our age," Katherine said. "We have thoroughly enjoyed the trips."
This is the first year the Craig Parks and Recreation Department has sponsored the senior trips, and only after being asked to by Steamboat Recreational Services Department officials.
Craig seniors were so enthusiastic about participating in the trips that they were signing up early for the Routt County program, preventing that area's seniors from participating.
Craig's officials were happy to jump in.
"Before Steamboat Springs contacted us, we had nothing for seniors, so it's about time we did something for them," said Pam Brethauer, with the Craig Parks and Recreation Department.
Brethauer said Craig's program is a partnership with Steamboat Springs, taking the same trips.
The extension allows for an additional 11 to 14 participants to ride the bus that takes off from Craig.
The groups are slated to travel to Blackhawk and Central City to visit the casinos and take in the opera.
It's the Compestine's favorite destination, but they won't make it this year because of a medical appointment.
They definitely won't miss their chance to attend a Rockies game, another of their favorites.
"We go on as many as we can afford," Katherine said. "They're very, very affordable and the number you go on just depends on your budget."
Katherine and Jim pick up a copy of the proposed destinations as soon as it's available and use it to chart out their summer.
Then they schedule time to visit their children.
"We usually use our vacation to visit our relatives," Katherine said. "It's nice to do something different."
Katherine said they see a lot of the same faces on the trips and it would be nice to get more Craig residents interested.
"I hope we can encourage more people to (take these trips)," she said. "If we don't use it, we'll lose it."
Katherine recommends signing up early, because the capacity is met quickly.
All seats are filled for the Blackhawk/Central City trips, but there are openings for a July 12 picnic and the July 22 trip to Colorado Springs and Cripple Creek.
For more information on Craig Parks and Recreation Department programs, call 826-2029.
Christina M. Currie can be reached at 824-7031, Ext. 210 at email@example.com