The reason for the season is giving. But, you don’t have to break the bank to do so. In Frank Hanel’s view, if everyone in Northwest Colorado opens their wallets a tiny bit, it will help provide a happy holiday for those who don’t have as much. Hanel, owner of radio station 93.7, 102.3 KRAI and 55 Country, is hosting the 13th annual Holiday Drive, a charitable endeavor to benefit the less fortunate in the region. The event begins bright and early at 6 a.m. Thursday and Friday, running for 12 hours, as volunteers at the entrance of the Centennial Mall take in donations of money, food and toys on behalf of local charities Christmas for Kids, Christmas for Seniors, the Interfaith Food Bank and Advocates-Crisis Support Services.
On the Record for Nov. 30, 2011
I sometimes dream I’ve breached airport security: lights blink, buzzers buzz, heads swivel, and security personnel — clad in pants two sizes too small — converge and yell contradictory orders. But, this time the nightmare was real. Joel and I had halted security operations at the St. Louis airport by dumping a bag of large ripe tomatoes all over the conveyer belt. Our daughter had sent us home with tomatoes from her garden: “We’ve eaten so many this summer, the kids will cheer when you take them.”
Darcy Owens-Trask accepts economic development position in Denver
The Craig/Moffat Economic Development Partnership announced Wednesday that its director has stepped down. Darcy Owens-Trask said she has accepted an economic development position with the state in Denver, according to a news release. She pledges a smooth transition as EDP continues economic gardening initiatives, primary industry support and prepares to open the One-Stop Business Incubation Center at the Colorado Northwestern Community College bell tower.
Coming back from a holiday that involves stuffing one’s self with food and lying around the house could be detrimental for a young athlete. Fortunately, the Thanksgiving break did not provide such a damper on the winning ways of the Craig Middle School boys basketball teams. If there was any tryptophan remaining in the bodies of CMS seventh- and eighth-grade hoopsters, it didn’t show during their last home game of the season. The seventh-grade A-team and eighth-grade B-team came back from their holiday to trump Hayden with gusto.
On Feb. 26, the Little Snake River Valley boys varsity basketball team lost to St. Stephens High School, 62-59, in the Wyoming 1A West Regional championship game. The defeat was the first of the year for the Rattlers, who had a 22-0 record heading into the contest. The loss, however, would be the one and only of an otherwise perfect season. LSRV went on to avenge the St. Stephens loss with a 79-61 victory in the Wyoming 1A state championship game.
The post office in Maybell, a town 30 miles west of Craig, has been removed from a list of branches that could potentially close due to cost-cutting measures, the U.S. Postal Service announced earlier this month. David Rupert, a USPS spokesman in Denver, confirmed the announcement Tuesday. He said closing the rural Moffat County facility that serves approximately 200 residents from Maybell to Browns Park wasn’t logical. “We looked at a number of different factors,” Rupert said. “Availability of alternative services, the needs of the population and the distance from the nearest office, and it just didn’t make sense to us to close the office in the end.”
The Memorial Hospital Board took a step Tuesday toward meeting a federal mandate that could have long-term impacts on hospitals around the country. The board voted unanimously to purchase computer systems and modules to help implement the mandate, commonly known as meaningful use, which requires all medical records be electronic, portable and easily shared with other facilities. Combined, they cost a total of $109,000, not including annual maintenance costs. These components are required to meet the July 1, 2012 deadline for implementing the mandate’s first stage
Structural issues have emerged at another school being constructed by the Neenan Co., a major builder of rural Colorado schools, including Craig Middle School, that already has admitted making mistakes that closed an $18.9 million school in Meeker. Neenan has agreed to pay for repairs at Monte Vista High School in southern Colorado “to stiffen it up in case of a catastrophic event like an earthquake,” the district’s superintendent, Dwayne Newman, told The Denver Post on Monday. He said Neenan plans to strengthen the connections between columns and a large metal beam in the gym, as well as perform additional work on the foundation. The school district received a $27.6 million state grant to help pay for the new high school — which is scheduled to open in August — as well as an elementary-school renovation and addition.
Owner Qi Lin Wu: Insurance coverage insufficient to renovate
It’s been more than two years since a faulty wall-mounted heater sparked a blaze in room 11 of the Craig Motel, sparking a fire that destroyed almost half of the site. Since the Oct. 21, 2009, fire, little has been done to the property at 894 Yampa Ave. Dave Costa, Craig city director of community development, said the city has been patient with the motel owner, Qi Lin Wu, because it was believed he intended to rehab the property. “We’re affording the gentleman some time to seek some financing to rehabilitate the motel,” Costa said. “Based on the economic hard times, he has had a little difficulty with his insurance coverage and collecting on the fire damage.
(AP) — A group planning to nominate an independent presidential candidate online has won a spot on Colorado's 2012 ballot. Secretary of State Scott Gessler announced Tuesday that Americans Elect qualified as a new minor political party in Colorado after collecting more than 12,000 valid signatures, about 2,000 more than the minimum number required. Americans Elect spokeswoman Ileana Wachtel said Colorado is the 10th state where it has won the right to list a presidential candidate. It hopes to be on all 50 by next year's presidential elections.
(AP) — Tim Tebow might want to update his autobiography, and not just because it's a best-seller. In "Through My Eyes," Denver's unconventional quarterback writes about how those who finish strong in football or life will achieve success and even greatness. He devoted just two pages to the topic but has enough material now to write several chapters. Since taking over as the Broncos' starter a month and a half ago, Tebow has engineered three fourth-quarter comebacks, two of which set up overtime wins for Denver, and another win at Oakland in which he rallied the Broncos from a halftime deficit to win going away.
(AP) — Herman Cain told aides Tuesday he is assessing whether the latest allegations of inappropriate sexual behavior against him "create too much of a cloud" for his Republican presidential candidacy to go forward. Acknowledging the "firestorm" arising from an accusation of infidelity, Cain only committed to keeping his campaign schedule for the next several days, in a conference call with his senior staff. "If a decision is made, different than to plow ahead, you all will be the first to know," he said, according to a transcript of the call made by the National Review, which listened to the conversation. It was the first time doubts about Cain's continued candidacy had surfaced from the candidate himself. As recently as Tuesday morning, a campaign spokesman had stated unequivocally that Cain would not quit.
Craig Parks and Recreation is offering a Red Cross lifeguard training class to anyone interested. The class will take place from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Dec. 30 and Jan. 2 to 4 at Moffat County High School, 900 Finley Lane. Participants must be at least age 15 and be able to pass a pre-course swimming test. The pre-course swimming test is scheduled for 7 p.m. Dec. 7 at MCHS.
There’s plenty on the calendar for this weekend, with a range of feel-good activities to heel-stomping fun, many geared toward throwing you full-force into the holiday season. But, before I tell you what’s planned, a couple of personal notes first. This will be my final Livin’ It Up column, and next week you’ll see a new face here. I am moving onto a new challenge and am very excited. Also, I’d like to shamelessly use this space to wish our little man happy birthday today. He’s now 9, and a “tween” — yikes. Happy birthday, Shane!
Cowboy Christmas 2011, a fundraiser for the Boys & Girls Club of Craig, is scheduled for Saturday night at the club, 1324 E. U.S. Highway 40. Cocktail hour begins at 5:30 p.m., and dinner is at 6:30 p.m. The event also includes live and silent auctions, gambling and dancing. Tickets are $35 per person and are available at the club, the Craig Daily Press or Spirit Pass. For more information, call 826-0411.
To the editor: Fall and winter typically bring stormy weather to Colorado, along with a storm front of a different kind: the annual flu season. So, just as Coloradans should have a snow shovel and an ice scrapper handy for inclement weather, everyone older than 6 months should get an annual flu vaccination. Unfortunately, I encounter many individuals who simply don’t get vaccinated. Last week, I got my vaccination at my husband’s worksite. Unfortunately, while my husband works among many colleagues at a busy office, very few had registered to get the vaccine.
To the editor: The family of Levi Trent Weber would like to thank everyone for all that has been done for us. Thanks to all who called, stopped by and brought food, and for all the support and prayers. Thank you also for all the support for this last year after the losses of Jim and our baby girl, Jamy Lynn.
Nov. 7 marked the 20th anniversary of what one ESPN.com story described as a “Kennedy Moment.” What transpired that day in 1991 was Magic Johnson, one of the brightest stars in the sports universe, stunning the globe by announcing he was leaving the glitz, glamour and glory of professional basketball because he had contracted HIV. It was a moment that transcended sports and culture: until then, many believed HIV and AIDS to be the plague of drug addicts and homosexuals. Magic’s announcement reinforced what we now know — the disease doesn’t discriminate and there are several ways someone can contract it.
Noon to 1 p.m. Communities 4 Healthy Relationships, a volunteer group designed to end relationship violence in Moffat County, meets at the Moffat County Public Safety Center, 800 W. First St. The meeting is open to the public. Call Anngie Sparks at 826-2329. 5:30 p.m. A meeting for women only of the Craig Group One Alcoholics Anonymous takes place at First Congregational Church, 630 Green St. Call Penny at 824-1793. 8 p.m. Narcotics Anonymous meets at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, 657 Green St. Call 756-5531.
Crossword for Nov. 30, 2011
It may be during those very times in the coming months when you feel everything is going against you that you will achieve some of your greatest successes. There is a lesson to be learned here: Never give up.
Comics for Nov. 30, 2011
Sudoku for Nov. 30, 2011