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Michelle Balleck

Stories by Michelle

Michelle Balleck: All-American entertainment

It’s an all-American weekend in Craig with music, shopping, baseball, roly-poly pets and a dessert buffet. Eat it up.

Michelle Balleck: Pucker up & bottoms up — St. Patty’s time

It’s time for green beer, leprechaun sightings, once-a-year meals and Kiss Me, I’m Irish buttons. Yep, it’s St. Patrick’s Day on Thursday. ■ Get your grub on then wash it down with a seasonal beverage. Here’s a rundown of St. Patty’s Day craziness for your pure enjoyment:

Michelle Balleck: Meet the governor or stay home spring cleaning

There’s not much fun to report this weekend, but that doesn’t mean there’s nothing to do. Warmer weather has me itching to get to cleaning the house and planning for my first ever garden. Plus, we’ve got a little painting on the docket this weekend.

Michelle Balleck: Varying degrees of culture take the stage

It’s a wild weekend of culture — both genuine and sarcastic — in this crazy town of ours. ■ The well-known and much anticipated Kiwanis Play hits the stage Friday and Saturday. If you skipped standing in line a month ago in frigid weather to save your spot, no worries. The Craig Kiwanis Club still has tickets available for Friday night’s crudely hilarious performance at the Moffat County Fairgrounds Pavilion. They’re $15 per person and they’re available from Jeff Pleasant at Rehabilitation Services of Craig, 473 Yampa Ave. Call 824-9359 to get yours.

Michelle Balleck: Concert, Mo Co’s birthday headline the weekend

Get out on the town this weekend for an uplifting concert, a dose of history and some fundraising fun. You’ve got some choices. ■ Enjoy the show that Coffey Anderson puts on Saturday night. The Christian singer-songwriter will perform a worship concert from 7 to 10 p.m. Saturday at The Journey at First Baptist Church, 1150 W. Ninth St.

Michelle Balleck: Winter Festival a remedy for cabin fever

If you can’t beat the cold, go out and revel in it. This weekend boasts one of the area’s biggest events of the year, so don’t miss the fun. ■ Wyman’s Winter Festival is Saturday and Sunday at Wyman Museum, 94350 E. U.S. Highway 40.

Michelle Balleck: Lovin’ it up this Valentine’s week

It’s time again for lovebirds to swoon and single people to roll their eyes. This week brings Valentine’s Day and all the chocolate-eating, flower-giving and love-expressing madness that comes with it. So soak it up. Or, avoid it all costs. The decision is yours.

Michelle Balleck: Football, culture & partying make for a full weekend

This weekend takes me back. Five years ago in the Kiwanis Play line, I started dating my now husband, Keith. Ahh, nothing like the Kiwanis Play to bring people together, right? Well, maybe the Super Bowl can.

Michelle Ballack: Dance ‘till you drop this weekend

Whether it’s inspired by tunes from your childhood or the desire to begin your New Year’s resolution, this week will have you on your feet and feeling the beat. ■ Boogie down with the Boogie Machine at Mathers on Friday. The band will play classic 70s tunes — including covers of Wild Cherry, Diana Ross, KC and the Sunshine Band, and more — from 9 p.m. to midnight at Mathers Bar, 420 Yampa Ave.

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Overcoming the time crunch

Jennifer Riley balances life as a wife, mother, council member and hospital administrator

Life’s a balancing act, Jennifer Riley said. Between her position on the administrative team at The Memorial Hospital in Craig, her seat on Craig City Council, her role as a wife and mother, and her additional community responsibilities, Riley certainly stays busy. But, she said it’s worth every minute and each endeavor is worthwhile. “I love Craig and I believe that Craig is a great community. … It’s nice to be able to give back,” Riley said. “And it sounds cliché, but this is a way to really demonstrate that giving back.”

Michelle Balleck: Dancing, riding & reading

Whether you’re in the mood to boogie down, ride hard or relax with some music, this weekend has got a little bit of culture and a little bit of rugged fun. ■ Dust off your tux and get ready to show your stuff Saturday night.

Michelle Balleck: Inside or out this weekend — your pick

If you can defrost yourself first, there are some fun things on the docket for the weekend. With temperatures warming up this weekend and hovering around the freezing point for highs, there are good times to be had whether you’re ready to strap on your skates or prefer cozying up with a good book or movie.

YVEA: Fault cause of today’s power outage in Craig

Craig’s north side and customers north to Wyoming affected

An underground fault, or blown piece of cable, is the cause of this morning’s power outage, Yampa Valley Electric Association operations manager Bill Caynor said. Power was lost at 8:45 a.m. and was restored at 10:24 a.m. to 710 customers on the northeast side of Craig and from Colorado Highway 13 in Craig north to Wyoming, Caynor said.

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Samuelson family connects over sports, doesn’t let cancer change their outlook

It’s those life-changing moments that define many people. And one might expect the same of the Samuelsons, who were faced with mom Shannon’s leukemia diagnosis in 2008 and several months of subsequent treatment away from home. “Whenever we would leave her everybody would start crying,” her daughter Emma said. “My brother, it was hard on him. He would hold it back, but you could see in his eyes that he wanted to cry.”

Michelle Balleck: Christmas is here & so is Festivus

It’s Christmas Eve Eve, which means if you still have shopping to do, time has just about run out. But no worries, you can still get it done, if you can dig your car out anyway. I’d like to wish you and your family warm and happy holidays. I hope you have a wonderful time celebrating.

Michelle Balleck: Stock up — last weekend to shop

With Christmas right around the corner, there are only nine days left to shop for presents, so it’s time to get in gear. I think we’re mostly done but definitely need to get a few more things this weekend. Plus, we’ll be baking up a storm, cleaning house and just getting organized. But between final preparations, make time for some holiday fun this weekend.

Michelle Balleck: The weekend to get in the spirit

If you aren’t in the holiday spirit just yet, this weekend provides plenty of opportunity to plunge in. • Browse through the offerings at the Winter Arts and Crafts Show this weekend, The show runs from noon to 7 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at Centennial Mall, 1111 W. Victory Way.

Michelle Balleck: Jam-packed weekend of seasonal celebrations

Wowzers, it’s a wild weekend here in Craig, America. There are plenty of events and activities to keep you occupied, so there’s no excuse for boredom. ■ Kick up your boots during the Boys & Girls Club of Craig’s annual fundraiser Cowboy Christmas.

Michelle Balleck: Gobble, gobble & ho, ho, ho

Happy Thanksgiving! I think that’s all the introduction to fun we need this weekend. So, enjoy stuffing your face, relaxing on the couch and catching some football. Oh, and hanging with family, of course.

Suicide risk higher during holiday season

Suicide numbers for the Yampa Valley are already high for the year. There have been five suicide deaths in Moffat County thus far this year and 10 in Routt County. “I’m sick about Routt. We had five last year and we’re double,” said Ronna Autrey, suicide prevention coordinator for Reaching Everyone Preventing Suicide. “But, it ties in with the state numbers and the whole country being up.”

Michelle Balleck: Ready yourself for the holiday rush

This weekend is all about resting up for the holidays and working ahead if you can. Enjoy a relaxing night at the theater and do some early Christmas shopping for items made locally. Plus, “Harry Potter” comes to town, if you’re into it. But whatever you choose for fun this weekend, be sure to get rested and get ready for the holiday season upon us.

Michelle Balleck: Kicking off the season right

This season calls for thankfulness, remembrance, eating and yes, shopping. Hey, you might not be ready to think about Christmas or making lists and checking them twice, but I sure am. Let the countdown begin! ■ Thank you. Two simple words sum up today. Nationally, it’s Veterans Day, a time to say “thank you” and reflect.

Michelle Balleck: Simple pleasures, easy-going weekend

From music to bingo and football to chili, Friday and Saturday feature simple fun for a laidback autumn weekend.

Michelle Balleck: All about the costume this weekend

From witches to pop culture icons and French maids to zombies, the most creative, original and all-out costumes will win big this weekend. So dig through your digs and score yourself a sweet one. First, here’s the adult fun planned for this weekend.

Michelle Balleck: Crab-cracking, comedy, canines & causes

If you like to eat, laugh and/or shop, this weekend’s got something for you. Lucky me, those are three of my favorite things.

Michelle Balleck: Fall family fun & frightening flicks

With Halloween just around the corner and autumn in full swing, it’s the perfect time to enjoy the crisp weather, get in the spooky spirit and start carving. And that’s just what we intend to do this weekend. Lucky for you, there’s plenty happening this weekend to help you celebrate however you choose.

Michelle Balleck: Weekend agenda: Bowling, politics & sleep

If you ask me, this weekend is made for catching up, sleeping in and making Halloween plans. We’re trying to figure out our costumes, and it’s a great weekend to start getting those together. But, if you want to get out of the house, there are a few options to allow you to do just that.

2 weekend fires deemed suspicious in Moffat County

The Moffat County Sheriff’s Office is investigating two weekend fires deemed “suspicious.” The first fire began about five feet from 560 Behrman Road, west of Craig, at about 6:15 p.m. Saturday, according to Craig Fire/Rescue Chief Bill Johnston. The fire was fueled by grass and sagebrush, and burned less than one acre. No structures were damaged, and no people were injured.

Michelle Balleck: Music, magic & the marching band — plus, welcoming weather

With record highs predicted this week, enjoy this unseasonable weather this weekend with some school spirit, a magic show for the kids and some stellar tunes right here at home.

Michelle Balleck: Fall into fall with weekend of fun

A sunny, warm-temperature finish to the summer isn’t a bad way to go out. And I say, bring on the fall colors. I am excited for a weekend of bonding with my husband (insert “aww” here) and for shooting the heck out of the beautiful scenery around us. I think I’ll even dig out my old Pentax and shoot some film for the first time in years. Enjoy our nice weather any way you choose, but have a look at these events to keep you entertained this weekend.

Michelle Balleck: Dancing + music + food + beer = one great weekend

Hold on to your britches, because this weekend’s going to be a wild one. There’s plenty of dancing, music, good food and good times, with a few cold ones. There are lots of choices, so take your pick. ■ Party with a purpose. That’s the motto of the Northwest Colorado Chapter of Parrotheads, and it’s a fitting description of this weekend’s event.

State suicide rate highest in 2 decades

Highest number ever. That’s the sobering reality Jarrod Hindman is faced with. Hindman, program manager for the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment’s Office of Suicide Prevention, announced Tuesday that in 2009, Colorado saw its highest number of suicide deaths in history.

Michelle Balleck: Sunshiny, lazy Labor Day weekend

With temperatures in the mid-80s and clear skies as far as the eye can see — or so the forecasters claim — it’s a wonderful weekend to kick back, relax and enjoy an extra day off in observance of Labor Day. I’ll be on an airplane headed home for a family reunion, but maybe you could make that long overdue trip to the lake, head out to the wilderness for a hike and a camp trip, or just take a nap in the hammock. Oh, man, a hammock sure sounds nice

Michelle Balleck: Finger-lickin’, belly-laughin’ fun

Are you ready for some football? Or some delicious barbecue? How about some make-your-belly-hurt laughs with a side of cheap beer? This weekend’s got a solid mix of all things wonderful, so dig in.

Johnston accepts job with press association

Bittersweet. Samantha Johnston knows it sounds cliché, but said it’s truly how she feels about leaving Craig and moving on to a new challenge.

Michelle Balleck: It’s a balloon. It’s a lei. It’s your weekend.

For me, the end of summer means finishing up projects and gearing up for school. It also means attending my seventh wedding of the summer, a garage sale Friday and Saturday and prepping the house for a guest staying with us for a month. Sleep is not in my future. But fun can be in yours. Just have a look at what this weekend brings.

Jennifer Riley announces candidacy for Moffat County assessor

Moffat County now has a second contested race on the Nov. 2 ballot. Craig resident Jennifer Riley, 37, chief appraiser for the assessor’s office, filed her affidavit Monday afternoon to be a write-in candidate for Moffat County assessor in the November general election. “I’m running for assessor because I feel the work of the assessor’s office is vital and important to this community,” Riley said. “And, I believe I have the qualifications, the education and the experience to continue to do the work the assessor’s office does and has been doing the last seven-and-a-half years

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SHARE Craig volunteers reflect on experiences in light of program’s end

From humble beginnings 12 years ago, the SHARE program in Craig had grown to supplying dozens, even hundreds, of residents with discounted food each month. But, no longer. SHARE Craig is closing up shop. “I was really sad to see it close,” longtime volunteer Diane Grubb said. “I was really disappointed that the program is disbanded.”

Michelle Balleck: A fair-ly good weekend

After this hectic week, here’s hoping Keith and I can actually spend some time together this weekend between fair fun and garage sale prepping. And beyond that, there’s plenty to keep you occupied for a weekend of music, billiards and revving engines.

Michelle Balleck: Summer’s end is nearing so enjoy it now

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but summer is winding down. To squeeze all we can out of our few remaining weekends, our little guy is having a big water party with his friends Saturday. So we’ll be digging out our squirt guns. We’re also digging out buried treasures for our upcoming garage sale. A little extra cash at the end of the summer goes a long way. For your summer fun, here’s what Craig has up its sleeve for you.

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Massaging the thought of a new career

Even if residents are only toying with the idea of a new career, Dan Minor invites them to explore their options. Minor, dean of instruction for Colorado Northwestern Community College’s Craig campus, and program director Cammi Montieth, are hosting an open house for the massage therapy program next week.

Michelle Balleck: Jam-packed weekend of fun

What a weekend. Are you ready for this one? Here we go: ■ The second annual Lid Jam, a skateboarding competition in memory of Shane Braselton, will be from 6 to 9 p.m. Sunday at the Craig skate park at the corner of Baker Drive and Ashley Road.

Michelle Balleck: Good times for good causes

There’ll be some downright fun for some downright good causes this weekend. And you can’t beat that. For those of you wondering what in the world Keith, my loving hubby, will be up to this weekend, well, we’re headed to Denver for a much-anticipated trip to the aquarium, Wildlife Experience and more. Keith can barely stand his excitement, and our little guy is looking forward to it a little bit, too.

Michelle Balleck: Soak up the sun

It’s more weddings for me this weekend. I’ll be photographing one Friday and attending a second on Saturday. ‘Tis the season for lovebirds. And ‘tis the season for enjoying this weather. It’s certainly been heating up lately. And I, for one, am loving it. So we’d better get out there and enjoy it while we can.

Michelle Balleck: Olympic athletes & fast cars — all in a Craig weekend

There’s plenty to keep you occupied this weekend — from yard sales to dirt track racing and drinking games to Olympic games. Plus, it’s prime time to be out enjoying the summertime, so go climb a mountain or snag a fish or whatever warm-weather fun you’re into. I will be enjoying one of summer’s most popular events this weekend — the wedding.

Michelle Balleck: Celebrate this weekend with a bang

It’s a weekend for friends, barbecues and remembering why we honor the Fourth of July in the first place. And, although that reason does not revolve around explosives, it’s still a lot of fun to see the annual fireworks display light up the night sky. This year, the Craig Fire/Rescue display begins at nightfall Sunday. The fireworks are lit south of the Moffat County High School football field and can be seen from just about anywhere in town.

Michelle Balleck: Golfing and running and movies — oh my!

It’s a weekend for exercise and good causes. There are fundraisers, running events and plenty of good times, I’m sure. I’ll be too busy hosting a bridal shower and bachelorette party to enjoy much of it, but you take your pick on what sounds best. And, maybe we’ll see you around on Saturday night!

Craig car show may draw larger crowd than in past

It’s time to dust off those gems hidden in the garage and show them off. That’s the message David Pressgrove, area director of Bear River Young Life, wants to share. “There’s a lot of people in Craig who have cars and you’d never know, and this is a good way to see that, as well as entries from all over the region,” Pressgrove said about the 2010 Bear River Young Life & Colorado Cruisers Car & Motorcycle Show.

Michelle Balleck: Biggest weekend of the year

Biggest. Weekend. Of. The. Year. Enough said. • Blue Oyster Cult is in Craig this weekend. No kidding. In Craig.

Balleck: Our pages, our rules

To censor or not to censor. That’s been the question for many newspaper staffs for many months. And it continues to be a topic of conversation at keyboards of members of our community and on our online forum.