News for Wednesday, August 1, 2012

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Rain not enough to open river access at state park

Northwest Colorado’s summer off the river is still in effect. Recent rains have gotten more water into the Yampa River and helped with irrigation, but they have not done enough to create a sustainable environment for boating and floating the river. Yampa River State Park in Routt County closed its river access points in July according to park manager for Yampa River State Park and Elkhead Reservoir Ron Dellacroce. Even with the rain, flow rates have not come up enough to reopen river access, he said. “It hasn’t really done much for us,” Dellacroce said. “We’ve seen a couple spikes with the rain we’ve had, but nothing sustainable where the river has come up. We had a big spike near Yampa about two weeks ago that looked really promising. It only lasted a day.

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Balloons and BBQ Blast to offer weekend fun in Craig

Things will heat up during a community get-together this weekend in more than one way. The Balloons and BBQ Blast will take place Friday, Saturday and Sunday at Loudy-Simpson Park. The dual event features both the Colorado State BBQ Championship at Craig and the Moffat County Balloon Festival. The festivities start at 9 a.m. Friday as competitors in the BBQ Championship take on initial meat inspections and continue through the next day, perfecting culinary masterpieces of chicken, pork, brisket and ribs, with final judging Saturday afternoon. Organizer Jennifer Riley said the number of competing grillers is at a peak of 36.

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Rockfall fencing project completed in Mount Harris Canyon near Hayden

The work involved removing 480 cubic yards of loose rock and installing 212,660 square feet of wire mesh meant to direct rocks into a ditch instead of allowing them to fall onto the highway. The project was finished on budget at a cost of $1 million.

US shooters competing with Aurora in mind

LONDON (AP) — USA Shooting is based in Colorado Springs, Colo., about an hour's drive from the site of the movie theater massacre. Yes, that's very much on the mind of the American shooting team at the London Games. Shooting sports get barely any mainstream attention in the United States except during the Olympics. Even then, it's nominal at best. So far in London, American shooters have won two gold medals. But since the team arrived questions have kept coming about Aurora, Colo., and the rampage on July 20 that left 12 dead and 58 others wounded. Along with that is the renewed debate about gun control in the country.

Editorial: Olympic rewind and remind

The year was 1980, and national pride in the U.S. was swooning by the time the XIII Winter Olympics began in Lake Placid, N.Y. The economy, hindered by the oil crisis, had dipped into recession. The hostages were being held in Iran. The Cold War was bitter. Our country, to a certain extent, was fractured, and optimism for the future was waning if not wholly extinct. On Feb. 22, a young U.S. Olympic hockey team gave the country a reason to believe.

On the Record for Wednesday, Aug. 1, 2012

On the Record for Wednesday, Aug. 1, 2012

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Local House District 57 candidate addresses Craig Rotary Club

Education, water issues and economic development. These are three priorities Jo Ann Baxter is focusing on as she sets her sights toward election to the Colorado House of Representatives. Baxter spoke Tuesday morning to the Craig Rotary Club about these topics and how she plans to address them if elected. The first of the discussion points, education, is an “obvious” one for the candidate considering her background.

Gore Vidal, celebrated author, playwright, dies

In a world more to his liking, Gore Vidal might have been president, or even king. He had an aristocrat's bearing — tall, handsome and composed — and an authoritative baritone ideal for summoning an aide or courtier. But Vidal made his living — a very good living — from challenging power, not holding it. He was wealthy and famous and committed to exposing a system often led by men he knew firsthand. During the days of Franklin Roosevelt, one of the few leaders whom Vidal admired, he might have been called a "traitor to his class." The real traitors, Vidal would respond, were the upholders of his class. The author, playwright, politician and commentator whose vast and sharpened range of published works and public remarks were stamped by his immodest wit and unconventional wisdom, died Tuesday at age 86 in Los Angeles.

Romney coming to Colorado on Thursday

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney is coming to Colorado on Thursday, with stops planned in at least two cities. Campaign officials say Romney is holding a morning rally at the Jefferson County fairgrounds.

Francis shaky early; Rockies fall to Cardinals

Jeff Francis and Matt Holliday teamed up to take the Colorado Rockies to the World Series in 2007. On Tuesday night, Holliday helped send Francis and the spiraling Rockies to another loss. Holliday homered, doubled and drove in four runs, and Kyle Lohse worked through an erratic outing to win his fifth consecutive decision and lift the St. Louis Cardinals over the Rockies 11-6. Josh Rutledge homered among his three hits, and Jordan Pacheco also had three hits for Colorado, which lost for the seventh time in eight games.

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Young golfers take over Yampa Valley Golf Course

In spite of their baggier golf clothes and smaller clubs, youth golfers showed they have skills to spare Tuesday. Players from across Northwest Colorado came to the Yampa Valley Golf Course to participate in the Yampa River Junior Classic. The one-day tournament featured players from ages six to 17, and the youths showed off their skills while they had the course to themselves. With 36 players participating in the various age groups, YVGC member and head of the tournament Dave Desarmeaux was happy with the turnout.

Letter: Concealed carry proven to reduce crime, violence

To the editor: Tears fill her eyes as the woman highlighted in the news on Denver’s FOX TV channel says, "It could happen to any one of us, at any time, at any place." That’s the public delusion fostered by virtually all television stations, including the Denver channels, since reporting began on the July 20 mass shooting in Aurora. Only a few admirable news personalities dared refute this collective fantasy with facts.

Lance Scranton: Adapting in the face of change

Being guests in another state can be very educational. While we see only a snapshot of what is going on with the oil boom in North Dakota, my extended family offers another perspective. There is a huge amount of attention being paid to North Dakota as an oil-producing giant. While oil jobs pay well and generate tax revenue ($856 million state budget surplus to date), there are a few concerns. There are approximately 200 oil wells currently producing in the western portion of North Dakota with more than 600 more in the planning stages.

On the Record for August 1, 2012

Friday, July 27 Kenneth Lee Reynolds, 29, of Craig, was booked into Moffat County Jail on a warrant. Saturday, July 28 Conny Gillis Mullis, 44, of Craig, was booked into Moffat County Jail on suspicion of driving under the influence, compulsory insurance, violation of a one-way road, insufficient licensure and insufficient vehicle registration. Cory Lee Jones, 29, of Craig, was booked into Moffat County Jail on a warrant.

State patrol releases names of crash victims

The Colorado State Patrol released the names of the three victims in Saturday’s fatal two-vehicle crash west of Craig. The CSP officials reported that 35-year-old Raul Torres-Rodriguez, of Fort Collins, was the driver of an Audi A4 carrying 22-year-old Christopher Karschner, of Rangely, and 19-year-old Luis Terrones-Ortega, of Greeley, as passengers. The vehicle, traveling west on U.S. Highway 40, reportedly veered into the eastbound lane and collided head-on with a Freightliner tractor-trailer driven by Rickie Jenkins, 53, of Casper, Wyo., according to a CSP news release.

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MCTA unveils new county logo, slogan

Those in the business of promoting tourism in Craig and Moffat County are already familiar with the sights, sounds and attractions unique to this part of Colorado. Yet there are hidden gems some residents have never visited, let alone knew existed. With so much to be discovered, particularly among Moffat County’s natives, attracting visitors from outside the state might seem like a daunting task. On Tuesday, the Moffat County Tourism Association Board took a step forward in its quest to boost visitor traffic when it unveiled the county’s new logo, slogan and advertising campaign — "Moffat Country, Colorado: Where the West Runs Wild."

Briefs for August 1: Balloons and BBQ Blast at Loudy-Simpson Park

The Balloons and BBQ Blast, which includes both the Colorado State BBQ Championship at Craig and the Moffat County Balloon Festival, will take place Friday, Saturday and Sunday at Loudy-Simpson Park. Activities include vendor booths, entertainment, a performance by Beatles tribute band FAB 4, and balloon launches. The event begins at 9 a.m. Friday with meat inspection for BBQ competitors. Balloon launches begin after sunrise Saturday and Sunday, and awards for the BBQ competition will be announced at 3:30 p.m. Saturday.