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Andy Bockelman

Stories by Andy

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Personal touch pays off for Bank of the San Juans employees

Flint Dillon, Heather Brumblow win Best Customer Service, Best Bank Teller

A banking institution without its own automated teller is a rarity in the 21st century, but the people inside the building can make all the difference in how a patron does business. The Craig branch of Bank of the San Juans took first in two Best of Moffat County categories as employees Heather Brumblow and Flint Dillon cashed in with Best Bank Teller and Best Customer Service, respectively.

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JW Snack’s — Gulf coast goodness wins multiple local awards

There are few places less likely to boast a gulf coast Cajun eatery than the mountains of Colorado, and that’s exactly what compelled the owners of JW Snack’s Bar & Grill to open shop. After just recently celebrating 10 years in business, JW Snack’s won a slew of awards through Best of Moffat County to prove its longevity in Craig, tying with Carelli’s Pizzeria for the most total first-place honors in the restaurant category for owners Danny and Teri Griffith.

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The Bock’s Office: ‘Finding Dory’ a fine, funny fin-tastic sequel

Memory is a tricky thing. A movie you held in high regard more than 10 years ago may remain in your mind as the best thing you’ve ever seen, or it could just as easily be replaced by the next big fad. Most viewers aren’t likely to forget the feature that preceded “Finding Dory,” yet most who watch this sequel will be remembering it for new reasons.

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Craig judges trim down list to name Whittle the Wood winner

17th annual weekend festival includes music from Trail, Subdudes

With 17 successful years now in the books, Whittle the Wood Rendezvous remains a favorite for Craig and visitors alike. The collection of freshly constructed wooden carvings, unbridled music and more came to a close Saturday as hundreds gathered in Loudy-Simpson Park to view the works of art on display, take in the music and otherwise just see what the buzz is all about during Father’s Day weekend in Craig.

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Good art, good tunes, good times at Whittle the Wood

Saturday events include carving winners, downtown car show, Subdudes performance

The finale of the 17th annual Whittle the Wood Rendezvous takes place Saturday as the 11 wooden carvings that have been the spectacle all week in Loudy-Simpson Park are unveiled in their finished form and judged to determine which whittler wins a windfall.

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CNCC’s soccer program takes next step, hires new coach

Program head Lance Noble planning tryouts for men’s, women’s teams, local athletes welcome

A new program at Colorado Northwestern Community College is coming up fast, even more so now that it’s got a new leader. The CNCC men’s and women’s soccer teams now have a coach, with Lance Noble recently hired to take on the sport, new for the Craig campus.

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Craig’s Whittle the Wood revving into action

Four-day annual event also features car show, art gallery, live music

Craig’s biggest annual event starts this week, and appropriately enough for a gathering that involves trees, it will be branching out a bit. The 17th annual Whittle the Wood Rendezvous runs Wednesday through Saturday in Loudy-Simpson Park as a dozen chainsaw-wielding talents each come to town to turn a stump into a work of art, possibly pick up a cash prize and provide some unique entertainment to spectators.

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Craig Sea Sharks ready to dive in to home meet this weekend

Youth swimming program hosts Thursday fundraiser, plans to host state meet in July

A dip in the local pool is always refreshing, and the members of the Craig Sea Sharks youth team will be seeing a lot more peers in the old swimming hole this summer. The Sea Sharks ABC Swim Meet takes place at 9 a.m. Saturday and Sunday at the Craig Pool Complex, an event that will feature about 140 kids from 11 teams.

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Victory Motors shows drive for healthier Moffat County

Cancer Drive includes 5K Color Run, Denver Broncos cheerleaders, NFL Play 60

When a problem presents itself, being able to tackle it as a community is a sign of strength. The third annual Victory Motors Cancer Drive took place Saturday at Loudy-Simpson as Craig people of all ages turned out for the Moffat County Cancer Society fundraiser that had lots to offer.

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Moffat County’s Ary Shaffer to run for Oregon college

Recent graduate will compete in track at George Fox University

After four years of running for Moffat County High School, Ary Shaffer is ready for a new challenge and a new location. The newly graduated MCHS student will be starting off her college career on the right foot, competing in track and field for George Fox University, of Newberg, Oregon.

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Football up and running for Moffat County

Amid summer camps, senior Bulldogs ponder future in sport

The off-season is what athletes make it, and members of Moffat County High School sports plan to make it a time to fine-tune and be better than ever this fall. With activities like MCHS football’s summer skills camp and the NFL/Broncos Football Camp and NFL Play 60 Challenge through the Victory Motors Cancer Drive, the gridiron has been busy this week.

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The Bock’s Office: ‘Me Before You’ a sweet but strained story

With a cast of people who have appeared in “Game of Thrones,” “The Hunger Games,” “Harry Potter,” “Pirates of the Caribbean,” “Terminator” and other fantasy and sci-fi franchises, you might expect “Me Before You” to be a little less than grounded, but wizards and White Walkers are a cinch to believe in over the idea that a tragic romance will work out in the end.

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Moffat County called on to get involved for community improvement meetings

‘13 Ways to Kill Your Community’ author to speak June 30

It takes an entire group of people working as one to function as a community, and just as there’s a list of things to do to improve one’s surroundings, a list of what not to do is just as vital. Craig will host Doug Griffiths, co-author of the advice book “13 Ways to Kill Your Community,” in late June as part of an effort to start a large level of community involvement.

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Moffat County rodeo wins state titles in bronc riding, tie down roping

Numerous Northwest Colorado athletes qualify for national finals

For some, the end of an era is coming as they embark on bigger things, while others have plenty more to come in their favorite sport at the high school level. But, they all have one thing in common: this ain’t their last rodeo by a long shot. The Colorado State High School Rodeo Association State Finals took place in Lamar during Memorial Day weekend, and multiple Northwest Colorado competitors walked away with championship belt buckles as they and more move on to the national level.

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The Bock’s Office: Laughs dominate in detective feature ‘The Nice Guys’

When you’re looking for a priceless bird statue, you call Sam Spade. When you need a heroin trade upended, you call Popeye Doyle. When you’re searching for a missing person but still have plenty of time for shenanigans? That’s when you call “The Nice Guys.”

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Grand Olde West Days: Bronc riding, Chancey Williams provide cowboy kick

The Grand Olde West Days action continued Saturday at Moffat County Fairgrounds as the final rounds of the Iron Man Ranch Bronc Riding determined who the toughest riders were to drop by for the holiday weekend.

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Moffat County High School seniors say farewell with Saturday graduation

Class of 2016 features 116 graduates

With four years of memories behind them, good and bad alike, the Moffat County High School Class of 2016 had one last group activity Saturday morning. MCHS graduated 116 seniors this weekend, sending their Bulldogs into the future as adults.

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Honors aplenty for Moffat County athletes

Shandon Hadley named ‘Dude’ Dent winner, Morgan Lawton Outstanding Female Athlete

Only two Moffat County High School students walked out with trophies, but all six seniors as well as the other Bulldog athletes gathered at the Clarion Inn & Suites Thursday night were examples of athleticism. The presentation of the Lewis “Dude” Dent Memorial Award and Outstanding Female Athlete was a night of honors for many as the top two student-athletes of the Class of 2016 were recognized.

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Craig’s Grand Olde West Days a fun festival with new, old cowboy traditions

26th annual event sees changes for Memorial Day weekend happenings

For a quarter-century, the kickoff to summer has been a grand thing to behold in Northwest Colorado. The 26th annual Grand Olde West Days takes place this weekend, bringing in a huge schedule of cowboy and cowgirl activities for Memorial Day weekend.

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Moffat County sports honor best of the bunch with ‘Dude’ Dent award

Another year of Moffat County High School sports is in the books, and now comes the time to remember a bit of local history as a select group of athletes set their sights forward. The Lewis “Dude” Dent Memorial Award ceremony takes place at 6 p.m. Thursday at Clarion Inn & Suites, a night that includes a variety of athletic awards and culminates in the presentation of the Dude Dent trophy and Outstanding Female Athlete to the cream of the crop for the Bulldogs.

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The state of things: Moffat County track hits new heights with second-place girls finish

Bulldogs win four state titles, Kayla Pinnt breaks state meet record in 400 dash

Todd Trapp’s athletes have pushed through rain and snow, wind and chills the past few months, but the last day of the season was a sunny one in more ways than just the reading on the thermometer as the track and field coach saw the best overall result in his time at Moffat County High School. The MCHS girls team finished in second place as a whole at the 3A CHSAA State Championships Saturday afternoon to complete a banner season, claiming four titles and placing in many more events.

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The state of things: Moffat County track preps for final day of championships

Bulldog girls place in discus, 800, 4x200; sprints, relays, hurdles, 1,600, long jump in store

As the midway point of the State Track and Field Championships, Friday was a day of pleasant surprises for some members of the Moffat County High School teams while others were not as happy with their final standings and the rest are reserving judgment for the grand finale.

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The state of things: Moffat County track places in multiple events Thursday

Bulldogs finish strong in 4x800 relays, boys discus, girls 3,200 run

The quest for precious metals is on, and Moffat County High School has already crossed some off their checklist. No gold so far, but there are still days to come. In the first day of the 3A CHSAA State Track and Field Championships at Jefferson County Stadium, the Bulldogs placed in four events, including the boys discus, girls 3,200-meter run and boys and girls 4x800 relays.

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The state of things: Moffat County track preparing for biggest meet yet

Bulldogs qualify in 24 events for championships

Music was blaring from the Moffat County High School Bulldog Proving Grounds Tuesday afternoon, but the tunes weren’t so much celebratory as a method to pump up everyone there. The celebration will come after this weekend if all goes well. MCHS track and field qualified athletes in 24 events for the 3A State Championships Thursday through Saturday in Lakewood, and the Bulldogs are ready and raring to win some medals.

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Craig's Special Olympics lets all athletes shine

Western Area Colorado Spring Games see many competitors

Many who compete in sports are concerned about the number of points they score, the rate at which they run or swim a lap or the thrill of defeating a worthy opponent. For those who were gathered at Moffat County High School Saturday morning, the focus was on one thing: pride. The Western Area Colorado Spring Special Olympic Games took place at Moffat County High School as athletes with disabilities from across the Western Slope joined together to run, jump, swim and otherwise show what they could do.

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The Bock’s Office: ‘Captain America’ — Let’s keep it civil, everyone

So far this year, we’ve seen the guy dressed like a flying mammal fight the man in the long johns and cape, not to mention the regenerating nutcase who should be subject to mattress tag penalties for removal of his mask. Who’d have thought the dude who carries around the red, white and blue circle squaring off with the genius in the crimson and gold metal suit would feel the most natural? Either way, so begins the summer movie season with “Captain America: Civil War.”

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Moffat County baseball awaits verdict on playoff picture

Bulldogs beat Aspen to place 4th in conference; RPI system may work against team

The Moffat County High School varsity baseball team has done all it can to get this far in its season. Now it’s a numbers game. The Bulldogs ended the year 8-9 overall and 7-7 in the 3A Western Slope League after a Tuesday win against Aspen, 5-3. Originally intended to be a Monday home game, weekend rains left the Craig diamond in no condition to play, MCHS rescheduling for the next day and then hitting the road to face the Skiers in a neutral site in New Castle, the home field of Coal Ridge.

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Western Slope titles numerous for Moffat County track

Girls dominate running events, relays; Todd Trapp named Coach of the Year

Hopefully no one with Moffat County High School track and field suffers from triskaidekaphobia. Knowing them, they’ll power through it. The Bulldogs took 13 individual honors throughout the weekend at the Western Slope Multi-Leagues Meet in Grand Junction.

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Moffat County girls golf tees up regional tourney

Rifle takes 1st; Bears’ Elly Walters wins individual play with 73

If they hadn’t gotten used to wet conditions by this point in the season, the players in the 4A Western Regional Tournament might have had some complaints about the precipitation this weekend, but there was no keeping these girl golfers from playing a full round. Yampa Valley Golf Course was the site of the regional event Saturday, with Moffat County High School girls acting as the hosting team as 14 schools came to Craig.

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Moffat County baseball rocks Roaring Fork with comeback win

Saturday sweep puts Bulldogs in position for playoffs

Fortune smiled on Moffat County High School varsity baseball Saturday afternoon, even if the weather did not. The Bulldogs swept the Roaring Fork Rams over the weekend with hard-fought wins of 6-5 and 10-4 in the Western Slope League doubleheader that may help move MCHS to the next stage of the season.

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Craig’s Special Olympics event around the corner

Western Area Games take place May 14

The chance to compete is something everyone in sports strives for, and a select group of athletes will have their shot next week. The Western Area Colorado Spring Special Olympic Games takes place in Craig May 14, allowing those with disabilities to show their skills. This year’s Olympics will include both track and field and aquatics with the facilities at Moffat County High School.

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Playoff hopes still alive for Moffat County baseball

Varsity seeks three straight wins for postseason; JV splits Thursday doubleheader

With less than one week to play, Moffat County High School baseball is hoping to stretch its last seven innings of the regular season into a playoff bid. The Bulldogs currently stand tied at fifth place in the 3A Western Slope League following a Tuesday win of 9-1 against Grand Valley, a road victory that showed just how well the varsity team can rally given the chance.

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Moffat County soccer takes it to overtime in final home game

Bulldog goalie fulfills high school career objective with penalty kick goal

The MCHS girls soccer team wrapped its final home game with a 3-2 defeat to Rifle, a match that went into overtime and proved to be one of their finest outings of the season. The team’s last game of the year was originally to be a Thursday home game against Colorado Rocky Mountain School, but another schedule conflict changed it to Wednesday on the road for the Bulldogs, which moved up the Senior Day festivities as the team said farewell to Walker, Jennifer Aguirre and Wendy Gomez.

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Former Moffat County coach Roman Gutierrez headed for Hall of Fame

Gutierrez led Bulldog wrestlers to five state titles in 31-year career with team

For decades of service to his sport, a former Moffat County High School coach will be getting his due next week. Roman Gutierrez will be inducted into the Colorado Chapter of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame with a ceremony that takes place May 7 at the Marriott Hotel in Colorado Springs.

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Home meet is sweet for Moffat County track

Bulldogs place 1st, take 16 events at Clint Wells Invitational

The bluster of a typical Northwest Colorado spring day was well met by Moffat County High School track and field athletes who walked away from their home meet victorious. The Bulldogs won both the boys and girls overall title of Friday’s Clint Wells Invitational, and while having a full roster was beneficial, having multiple first-place finishes didn’t hurt either, winning 16 individual events, girls nine and boys seven.

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Craig students expand minds with after-school Spanish program

Knez: Elementary-level learning increases later mastery of language

Learning another language can open up the world to a student, and the sooner the groundwork is laid the better.

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Craig’s Calvary Baptist encourages Christian elements in education

Private school shares faith with community

For students of Calvary Baptist School, the curriculum includes subjects like math and English, but both in and out of the classroom, sharing their faith with the world is part of the learning experience.

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Moffat County band program more than just music

Bolton: Music unifies, enhances ways of thinking for students

The members of the Moffat County High School band program have a love for music, but there are limitless possibilities involved in learning to master a masterpiece and it requires a large gathering of people to work in harmony.

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Moffat County, Steamboat soccer teams mix it up Wednesday

Sailors claim 10-0 win in non-conference rivalry game

The Moffat County and Steamboat Springs high school girls soccer teams have had drastically different seasons this year, and though it was an effort to get the two schools together after two postponements, the rivalry game was one full of energy. The Sailors took a 10-0 win while in Craig Wednesday in a game that Steamboat girls eventually commandeered but not without an early resistance by the Bulldogs.

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Moffat County girls golf weathers tough conditions in home event

Western Slope teams to return to Yampa Valley Golf Course for regionals

The precipitation coming down Tuesday at Yampa Valley Golf Course may not have been as big as the spheres being hit by players, but it was enough to end the day early. Wind and rain provided a tough tome during the Moffat County High School girls golf Invitational, but when a wave of hail struck the course midway through the tournament, organizers decided to bring everyone into the clubhouse and call things off midway through the event.

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Fruita Monument meet sees Moffat County track set new school records

Girls hit new marks in 4x100-meter relay, 400 dash, 100 hurdles

Records are made to be broken, and that’s what members of the Moffat County High School track and field teams did Friday afternoon. Fruita Monument’s Phil Wertman Invitational was the site of numerous Bulldog bests as MCHS girls tracksters earned new school records in the 4x100-meter relay, 100 hurdles and 400 dash.

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SAPP’s pancake breakfast provides funds for Craig activities

Program emphasizes youth alternatives to drug use

A hearty breakfast is the best way to start the day, and a meal that helps support a healthy community is even better. Craig’s Substance Abuse Prevention Program served up pancakes, sausage, orange juice and coffee aplenty Saturday morning at the local McDonald’s as part of a fundraiser to support SAPP’s work in the area to promote education about use of illicit substances and alternatives for young people.

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Craig native Clint Wells runs big in Boston Marathon

Moffat County graduate wins race’s Master’s Division

One of the most prestigious races in the world took place earlier this week, and among the fleet of foot from across the globe were those who have called Craig, Colorado home. Craig native Clint Wells won the Master’s Division of the 120th Boston Marathon, held Monday, with a time of two hours, 24 minutes, 55 seconds in the 26.2-mile race.

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Moffat County girls golf stays steady at home

Perfect weather provides good prep time before home tourney, regionals

The conditions could not have been mellower Thursday at Yampa Valley Golf Course, the kind of climate the Moffat County High School girls golf team has been trying to find all season. MCHS girls hosted a triangular meet with Rifle and Palisade, shooting 324 in a day that was an excellent warm-up for everyone for upcoming events at Craig’s course.

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The Bock’s Office: Live-action ‘Jungle Book’ has the right kind of bite

You may know the basic narrative of “The Jungle Book,” but it’s a testimony to moviemaking when something with decades of familiarity can make you jump out of your seat in surprise at the fur, scales, claws and fangs that seemingly come out of nowhere. It almost makes you wish they could figure out something better than a red diaper for the hero to wear.

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Moffat County baseball bests Grand Valley in rainy day rout

Bulldogs seek doubleheader domination in Basalt Saturday

There were no injuries on the ball field Tuesday afternoon, but Moffat County High School and their Parachute opponents were playing through the rain rather than playing through the pain. MCHS varsity baseball claimed a 9-6 win against Grand Valley in a game that was considerably back and forth but even more wet and wild.

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Moffat County track heats up in Glenwood Springs

Bulldog athletes win seven events; boys finish 2nd, girls 3rd

Conditions were wintry for most of the Western Slope over the weekend, yet Moffat County High School track and field athletes had an unmistakable spring in their step. MCHS was on fire during the Glenwood Springs Demon Invitational Saturday, picking up victories in seven overall events, with boys placing second behind only the hosting school and girls third.

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Moffat County baseball slams Rangely, 17-9

Coach: Team ‘rounding corner’ as season progresses

Sometimes a close loss is just the inspiration a team needs to get a big win. Moffat County High School varsity baseball rounded out its week with a 17-9 victory at home against Rangely, a win that comes after an 8-7 loss Monday in Rifle.

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Basalt breezes past Moffat County girls soccer

Losses to Longhorns, Coal Ridge plague team after return from break

The week after spring break can be a tough time for a student-athlete as they get back into their sport, but the Moffat County High School girls soccer team has done their best as they return to the grind. MCHS girls lost 6-0 Thursday in their first home game in nearly a month, hosting Basalt.

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Moffat County golf anticipates upcoming home events

Girls shoot sixth in Utah; Bulldogs prepare for home triangular, tourney

The season has gone by quickly for the members of the Moffat County High School girls golf team, and thankfully they’ll be sending much of the remainder of the year on their own turf. MCHS girls recorded a 459 Tuesday in Vernal, Utah, at Dinaland Golf Course at a tournament hosted by Uintah High School.