Announcements

Middle Park High School Prom royalty

April 30, 2016 — 

King and Queen, Prince and Princess were crowned Saturday night at the Fraser Recreation Center for the Middle Park High School Prom.

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Book sale at Mid Town Cafe this week

April 29, 2016 — 

The Friends of the Library Book Sale continues throughout the week at Mid Town Cafe in Granby. Buy $5 or more worth of books and get a free cup of coffee. All sales benefit Grand County libraries.

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Through the Fields of Shorefox

April 29, 2016 — 

A pronghorn buck escorts his harem through the fields of the Shorefox property near Granby, Thursday, April 21.

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TREK Graduation at Snow Mountain Ranch

April 29, 2016 — 

On May 9, 13 employees of Snow Mountain Ranch – YMCA will graduate from the TREK Program. For the past eight months, they have worked in various departments at Snow Mountain Ranch, as well as completed studies and service related to this Christian Gap Year program. It was specifically designed for youth ages 18-24 who want to take an extra year after high school to find their path.

The program asks participants to answer and study three basic questions during their course: Who is God? Who am I? Where does God want me in this world? Through bible studies, outdoor adventures, leadership opportunities and career assessments Steve Peterson (YMCA Chaplain) has guided and supported these young Trekkers.

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Indians Peaks moves ahead with transfer negotiations

April 29, 2016 — 

The Indian Peaks Charter School (IPCS) transfer to Colorado’s Charter School Institute (CSI) is moving forward as negotiations between Indian Peaks, CSI and the East Grand School District (EGSD) continue to develop.

Indian Peaks is working to finalize negotiations between the school and the EGSD for several types of services and is preparing a five-year budget plan for submission to the CSI, said Allison Beauvais, Administrator for Indian Peaks.

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Commissioners approve WP Highlands trash program

April 29, 2016 — 

The Grand County Board of Commissioners has unanimously approved a contentious, extant on-site trash and recycling facility in Elk Park in the Winter Park Highlands neighborhood.

A disagreement erupted between the Winter Park Highlands Association, a voluntary HOA, and some homeowners who felt that the proposed facility negatively affected their property values.

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Grand County Real Estate Transactions, April 17 to 23

April 29, 2016 — 

Winter Park Tennis Club Condo Unit 114 – Heinz Engel and Narmore Margaret Engel to Heinz Engel Trust and Margaret Engel Trust, $500

Winter Park Lodge II Bldg G, Unit 102, Garage 2 – Robert Woodbury to Jacques Thomas, $180,000

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Shop Off food drive in Fraser May 4

April 29, 2016 — 

The Shop Off food drive begins at 9 a.m. Wednesday, May 4 at the Fraser Safeway.

This fun competition is open to community groups that would like to participate in the fun while helping the Mountain Family Center. The food drive is a competition to see who can collect the most food in a designated amount of time. Teams consist of two individuals from real estate or other community organizations. Teams are required to gather donations from sponsors to cover the cost of the food gathered during the Shop Off. Crazy costumes and cart decorations are highly encouraged. Awards will include Best in Show. Contact Grand County Board Of Realtors for more information 970-887-9588.

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County allocates Forest Reserve Payments to local school districts

April 29, 2016 — 

Ask anyone who has dealt with funding streams from the federal government for a little while and they will tell you that calling the system “complex” is an understatement.

The federal government provides funding to towns, cities, counties and states through a myriad of direct funding streams, grant programs, supplementary budget measures and emergency aid. The amount of funding received can vary greatly between entities and is dependent upon too many variables to attempt to list in a single news article. Often times the funds provided to various organizations, such as school districts, are provided through pass-through entities such as state or county governments.

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Advance care planning: Start the conversation

April 28, 2016 — 

Advance planning. Advance directives. Living wills. These terms tend to raise a lot of questions: How are they different? Which one do I need? Why do I need it?

The latter question, while difficult, is the most important. It begins the process to help ensure our wishes for medical care will be respected if we cannot make those decisions for ourselves. Not surprisingly, it’s a process many people are reluctant to undertake.

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Drug Take Back day

April 28, 2016 — 

Three locations in Grand County will allow residents to clean out their medicine cabinet and get rid of old drugs. From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, April 30 residents can drop off drugs for safe disposal at the Kremmling Mercantile, Granby City Market and Fraser Safeway.

Items not accepted include needles, sharps, mercury thermometers, oxygen containers, chemotherapy/radioactive substances, pressurized canisters, and illicit drugs. Visit www.dea.gov for additional information.

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Emergency preparedness training exercise May 5, 6

April 28, 2016 — 

Grand County Office of Emergency Management in coordination with the Northwest Region Incident Management Team will be conducting a 2-day emergency response training exercise. Residents of Grand County may see heavier than normal emergency response activity throughout the county on May 5 and 6. For this exercise, a scenario is presented to participating agencies and they respond as they would in a normal emergency incident. Emergency vehicles will not be running emergent to ensure safety. Each agency has identified plans and certain capabilities that they want to test, evaluate and potentially improve upon.

These types of exercises allow the county, local agencies and regional partners the opportunity to train and work together to strengthen preparedness and response capabilities to emergency incidents.

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Community baby shower

April 28, 2016 — 

Attention parents and parents-to-be. Grand Beginnings will be partnering with local organizations to give families the chance to learn about the many resources available to them within the county. Enjoy some free food, giveaway items such as baby clothes, baskets and blankets. The event will be held Tuesday , May 3rd starting at 1 p.m. and will end at 6 p.m. at the Granby Library.

For more information email vista@grandbeginnings.org or call 970-725-3391.

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East Grand students prep for annual service project

April 28, 2016 — 

Communities are, at their core, little more than an amalgamation of hundreds or thousands of individual interactions between citizens.

The tone and content of those interactions are largely what defines communities. We generally refer to those types of citizen interactions, in either formal or informal settings, as the foundation of the civic process. But civilized society is not a naturally occurring phenomenon and without the concerted efforts of local government, myriad institutions and citizens in general public discourse is more likely to resemble chaos than collaboration.

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Plummer and Bloom come to WP

April 28, 2016 — 

The NFL Draft is coming to Winter Park Resort, as the Denver Broncos will make their day three selections live from the base of Mary Jane on Saturday, April 30 beginning at 10 a.m.

Helping to make the picks will be former quarterback Jake Plummer, Miles the Mascot, members of the Broncos Cheerleaders, as well as University of Colorado alum and former Olympic freestyle skier Jeremy Bloom, the only athlete in history to ski in the Winter Olympics and be drafted in the NFL.

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Celebrating Healthy Kids Day

April 28, 2016 — 

Snow Mountain Ranch will celebrate the YMCA of the USA’s annual tradition of Healthy Kids Day by dedicating April 30 to Grand County locals and their families.

Events are free from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. including Kids Story Time & Yoga, Plant a Seed, the NSCD Parkour Obstacle Course, Human Hungry Hungry Hippos, and Mini-Golf. Local sponsors include the Grand County Library District, National Sports Center for the Disabled, Grand County Mountain Family Center, and Sombrero Stables.

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Play Days fundraiser: good food, music April 28

April 26, 2016 — 

Good food and a silent auction with tons of offerings and socializing are all part of the annual Granby Play Days Preschool fundraiser dinner set to start at 5 p.m. Thursday, April 28 at Maverick’s in Granby. A portion of all dinner proceeds will go to the operations of the preschool, located in the little red schoolhouse at First and Jasper Streets in Granby. Silent auction proceeds will also fund the school.

“We’re inviting the community to bring their family and come out and have a good time while benefiting a good cause,” says Gretta Fosha, president of the board for Granby Play Days. “With the great food and atmosphere at Maverick’s, we know people will have a great time for the benefit of our school.”

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Putting their heads together

April 26, 2016 — 

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9Health Fair in Granby

April 26, 2016 — 

The Granby 9Health Fair takes place from 7:30 - 11:30 a.m. April 30 at Granby Elementary School. This year’s Granby 9Health Fair is sponsored by the Rotary Club of Granby with generous assistance and coordination from Grand County EMS. Drug disposal will be offered at this year’s 9Health Fair in Granby. Anyone with prescription medications that have been sitting around in the medicine cabinets that are out of date, bring them to the fair and there will be a designated drop-off spot for those medications.

As with last year’s fair, a Wellness Zone will be offered. In this area, alternative health care providers can showcase the services they offer. Massage therapists, Yoga practitioners, herbalists and other alternative care providers are encouraged to contact the health fair by calling Robin Trainor at 970-887-2732 for more information.

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From the Vault: 100 years ago in Grand County

April 26, 2016 — 

“THE TIMES office received a very pleasant call this week from Mrs. F. W. Wessel of Fraser. The roads are open in every direction this week, and the boys with the motor cars are all rarin’ to go. Mr. Thomas Arkell, who has purchased the Ferguson ranch on Ranch Creek, was a pleasant caller at THE TIMES office Tuesday of this week. Morgan & Kennedy unloaded a train carload of cars on Tuesday. Come to Hot Sulphur Springs it you are thinking of buying a car, you can sure get

suited. Miss Caroline Polhamus and Miss Vesta Jamison, two of our popular Grand county schoolmarms, called on THE TIMES while attending the teachers meeting Saturday. Jack Schilz, the Grand and Summit County Ford agent, passed through the Springs Monday en route to Kremmling with two new Fords which he had purchasers for at that place. A few of the ladies of the church gave a surprise party April 24 in honor of Grandma Miller who was 80 years old that day and Grandma Sunderlin who was 78 on April 16. After an hour of getting acquainted, ice cream and cake were served, when all departed after expressing themselves as having a very enjoyable evening. R.F. Ferguson, the real estate man of Denver, was in town this week completing the transfer of a ranch property which be sold to Thomas AJkell, formerly of Junction City, Kansas. Ferguson says that the outlook for land sales is good and that he has several people who will investigate Grand County ranches this spring.

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The faces of closing weekend at Winter Park Resort; Springtopia

April 23, 2016 — 

Winter Park’s final weekend celebration got off to a raucous start with a free concert from G Love & Special Sauce and American Authors on Saturday. Sunday, the 48th annual Spring Splash pond-skim will bring the season on the Winter Park side to a close. After that, the fun moves to Mary Jane, which will stay open to May 7.

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Pets for adoption

April 23, 2016 — 

Pets for adoption at the Grand County Animal Shelter in Granby.

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Eagle's Nest dreams of offering hope to the neglected

April 22, 2016 — 

Grand County is a place of unparalleled beauty but as anyone who has lived here very long will tell you there are several elements of civic life our region is lacking in terms of services.

There is a relative dearth of mental health providers in the region and surprisingly only one single foster home in the entire county, which means that almost all children from Grand County in need of foster care must be relocated to other places in the state.

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US Forest Service in Granby seeks volunteers

April 22, 2016 — 

The Sulphur Ranger District of the Arapaho National Forests is seeking volunteers to help staff the office visitor center and assist customers with their recreational questions.

An volunteer information meeting is set for 7 p.m. Wednesday, April 27 at the Sulphur Ranger Station at 9 Ten Mile Drive, Granby.

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#ExploreGrand

April 22, 2016 — 

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Springtopia

April 21, 2016 — 

This weekend Winter Park Resort closes, although Mary Jane will remain open until May 7.

Schedule of events:

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County wants reversal of mine revaluation decision

April 21, 2016 — 

The Grand County Board of Commissioners says it will seek to abrogate its recent tax revaluation of Henderson Mine and Mill after hearing a citizen’s concerns on the matter.

Peter Ralph raised a number of concerns with mine owner Freeport-McMoRan’s request for a revaluation, chiefly that it didn’t do so in time, at the board’s Tuesday, April 19 meeting.

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Ski train may be back

April 21, 2016 — 

The Colorado Transportation Commission has approved a $1.5 million grant to reinstate passenger rail service from Denver to Winter Park Resort.

In a press release, U.S. Senator Michael Bennet applauded the Colorado Transportation Commission’s approval of a $1.5 million grant to reinstate passenger rail service from Denver to Winter Park Resort. Earlier this week, Bennet sent a letter to the Commission in support of Winter Park Resort’s request, which will allow them to build a boarding platform and install rail improvements requested by Union Pacific. The completion of these improvements will allow negotiations to continue between the resort, Union Pacific, and Amtrak to re-launch service in 2017. The grant was unanimously approved.

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Emily Warner feature to air on CBS Friday

April 21, 2016 — 

Emily Hanrahan Warner and her induction this weekend into the Irish American Hall of Fame in Chicago will be on the Denver CBS 4 news broadcast Friday, April 22.

News anchor, Jim Benemann, may also mention Granby/Grand County Airport-Emily Warner Field and the Grand County Historical Association Museum, said local writer, Penny Hamilton.

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Watching over the herd

April 21, 2016 — 

Grand County is known for an abundance of natural wonders such as high mountain peaks and beautiful river valleys. Among our most prized assets is our wildlife that brings both beauty and economic vitality to many areas of the high Rockies.

Every year thousands of hunters from throughout the state and nation ascend the mountain passes to the high country in search of big game like elk and deer. The number of hunters is determined primarily by the number of licenses issued by Colorado Parks & Wildlife (CP&W), the agency that oversees and manages the state’s wildlife resources. The number of licenses issued varies year by year and is determined by CP&W based primarily on population studies of big game herds throughout the state.

Kirk Oldham is a wildlife biologist for CP&W and is based out of the agency’s Hot Sulphur Springs office. Oldham oversees the mule deer population/mortality study for CP&W for the Middle Park mule deer herd. Oldham has worked for CP&W since 2000, spending his entire career with the agency within Middle Park. He was the District Wildlife Manager for the Grand Lake and Granby area before becoming the department’s local wildlife biologist and he is intimately familiar with the Middle Park mule deer herd.

Herds Monitored

Oldham and other wildlife biologists study big game herds in specific locations in Colorado. For mule deer populations CP&W monitors five different herds that operate in five unique ecotypes throughout mountains. Middle Park is home to one of the five herds used for monitoring mortality and population levels.

The other four herds monitored by CP&W are: the Uncompahgre Plateau herd near Montrose, the Salida area herd, the White River herd in the Meeker area and the Gunnison herd, which CP&W first began monitoring in 2008. The herds that are selected for mortality studies live within unique ecotypes in Colorado, or regions with unique ecological factors such as climate and vegetation.

Parks & Wildlife considers the five different herds as relatively representative of the different ecotypes across the state in which various herds of mule deer live. “We take any herd in the state and apply numbers from these herds to other herds,” Oldham said. “We don’t have the resources to monitor every deer in the state. That is why we apply those survival studies to other herds.”

Parks & Wildlife views all mule deer within Middle Park as part of the larger Middle Park herd, which stretches from Grand County down into Summit County. “We don’t have a specific Fraser herd,” said Oldham. “It is all one herd. The management goes all the way back to the fifties.”

Population studies

The ongoing survivability study of the Middle Park herd grew out of a much older population study conducted on the mule deer in Middle Park beginning back in 1954. “At that time we did a live deer count in February,” Oldham explained. “We would get volunteers, college students and staff and count every deer would could on cedar ridge, south of Hot Sulphur Springs. In May we would count dead deer on cedar ridge. It would give us an idea of the mortality and we would apply those numbers to all of Middle Park.”

Since then technology has advanced and new methods of gathering data were taken up in favor of the older method of counting deer on cedar ridge. Prior to the end of the study the cedar ridge mule deer population count was the longest running wildlife census in the nation, according to Oldham.

Tthe ongoing population and mortality studies conducted by CP&W are a key component of the state’s management of mule deer and, “allows us to appropriately set harvest numbers,” he said. “The purpose of intensively monitoring these deer herds is to monitor deer survival, adult survival and fawn survival.”

The current mule deer study in Middle Park originated in the late 1990s and utilizes radio collars on a sample of 90 mule deer adults and 60 fawns along with physical counts conducted by Oldham and other CP&W employees from the air and on the ground. For several years after the study was initiated only fawn and doe survivability were monitored but starting in 2011 CP&W also began monitoring buck mortality.

Collar monitors

Each year in December or January CP&W employees head out into the field and capture local mule deer to be fitted with the collars. Every week Oldham and others reexamine data from the radio collars, which give off a mortality alert if the collared animal does not physically move for a specific period of time.

After Oldham receives a mortality signal from a collar he or others from CP&W physically go to the location of the collared animal to determine if indeed the animal has died and if possible what was the cause of death. “Depending on how soon we can get to it we can determine time of death and cause of death,” Oldham said. The collars themselves are solar powered and do not need batteries.

Primary causes of mortality in Middle Park vary but according to Oldham, if you look over the entirety of the study going back to 1998, there is a relatively even split between road kills, starvation and disease deaths and predator deaths. Oldham pointed out that CP&W’s mortality studies do include hunter harvests into their figures.

So far in 2016 mule deer populations in Middle Park are at a 90 percent rate of survivability roughly overall. “It fluctuates,” said Oldham. “That is why we monitor. It is high for this time of year.” Fawn survivability so far in 2016 is at roughly 65 percent. “The months of March and April are typically when we see the highest mortality in fawns,” Oldham said. “We expect their mortality to be higher.”

Survivability rates

Over the past decade and a half the Middle Park mule deer herd has averaged a survivability rate of 90 percent. The rate of survivability depends on many factors with the intensity of winters being among the most significant. Some winters are particularly harsh and produce outliers in terms of data.

During the 2007-2008 winter survivability in adult mule deer in Middle Park dropped to 79 percent and fawn mortality fell to 32 percent. The 2009-2010 winter, which was much more mild in comparison, saw trends move in the opposite direction with a 93 percent survivability rate for adults and close to 80 percent for fawns.

The current population of the Middle Park mule deer herd is roughly 16,800 with a rate of 49 bucks per 100 does. The population is above CP&Ws population objectives for the region, which is 10,500 to 12,500 mule deer. Population objectives for big game herds are based on carrying capacity, a figure developed by CP&W based on how many animals they believe a specific area can support. Because the Middle Park herd has trended above objectives for the past several years the state is more likely to issue additional game licenses in the area.

“We have had increased opportunity for licenses since 2010,” said Oldham. “There is ample opportunity for deer hunters in Middle Park.”

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