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Pat Sunderland
DCI News Editor
Pat Sunderland

Recent Articles

Pat Medina named to Hotchkiss Town Council

Pat Medina has been selected to fill a vacancy on the Hotchkiss Town Council created by the resignation of Larry Jakubiak. Her appointment runs until the municipal election in April.

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Higher speed limit raises concerns for pedestrians

Actions by the Colorado Department of Transportation have raised concerns about pedestrian safety in the Town of Hotchkiss.

At the Sept. 14 town council meeting, public works director Mike Owens reported that pedestrian crossing signs at several Bridge Street intersections were removed because CDOT officials felt there was too much sign "noise" on the street.

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DCED director tapped for new state position

This week, Delta County Economic Development (DCED) announced "with great regret" the resignation of Trish Thibodo as executive director.

"DCED appreciates the leadership Trish has brought to Delta County and the many projects DCED has been involved with," John Gavan, DCED president, said in a press release.

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Arts center envisioned for Cedaredge

Arts center envisioned for Cedaredge

Cedaredge has long been home to a wealth of talented artists, musicians and craftsmen, many of whom are featured in galleries, at community festivals or during the First Friday Art Walks hosted by the Cedaredge Area Chamber of Commerce.

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Fort designated OST interpretive site

Fort designated OST interpretive site

Fort Uncompahgre was a lively site Saturday. Visitors in period costume sampled traditional Mexican fare while browsing the open air market. Vaqueros traversed the courtyard on horseback, while kids gathered under a large canopy for games organized by the Girl Scouts.

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Tailgate party is becoming a tradition for Bruin fans

From pancakes to lamb fajitas to barbecue, the Cedaredge FFA Chapter knows how to turn out huge quantities of tasty food. The students enhanced Homecoming festivities with a tailgate party featuring lamb and beef from Homestead Meats, slowroasted pork, Mountain Fresh corn, apples from Fritchman orchards, beans, dinner rolls and ice cream.

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Pea Green Community House receives historic designation

Pea Green Community House receives historic designation

The Pea Green Community House was recently named a Montrose County Historical Site -- largely because of the role the unassuming building at the corner of Highway 348 and Banner Road has played in the lives of area residents.

Native Pea Greener Lee Markley worked diligently with the Montrose County Landmark Properties Advisory Board to have the hall designated a historical site.

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City purchases used climbing wall

Major decisions about parks and recreation facilities are being delayed until the completion of a master plan, but a recent purchase demonstrates that some deals are just too good to pass up.

The city was offered a used climbing wall for $7,000, which includes safety equipment, signage trailer and the climbing wall.

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City of Delta's building inspector draws fire

About a dozen property owners, contractors and tradesmen expressed concerns about the city building department, and specifically building inspector Dan Reardon, during the public comment portion of the Sept. 5 Delta City Council meeting.

Many said they do not offer their services in the city because the building inspector's demands -- described as unnecessary and inconsistent -- have cost them time, labor and materials.

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Survey reveals community's vision for city parks, trails

A survey targeting the city's open spaces, parks and trails yielded data about the most utilized facilities -- picnic areas and trails -- and a "wish list" for additional amenities that includes climbing features, outdoor water play areas and additional trails/connectivity.

The survey was mailed to city residents and made available online to anyone who wanted to offer input on the city's parks and recreation master plan.

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Ambulance, Crawford tax questions on ballot

The Town of Crawford and the Delta County Ambulance District will again ask voters to approve a mill levy increase after seeing those measures narrowly defeated in the 2016 general election.

Those two issues will be the only local questions on the November 2017 ballot.

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Felony filings see 'unprecedented' increase

Delta County is on track for what district attorney Dan Hotsenpiller calls an "unprecedented" year-to-year increase in felony criminal filings.

"We're not alone," he said at a meeting that included Delta County Sheriff Fred McKee, Undersheriff Mark Taylor and Delta Police Chief Luke Fedler. "This is a statewide trend."

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Panthers' softball team doubles up against Durango

Panthers' softball team doubles up against Durango

Coach Jerry Sandoval's Panthers came away with back-to-back wins during a doubleheader with the Durango Demons Friday afternoon. Durango was 7-0 coming into the contest.

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Delta boasts long-running fantasy football league

Delta boasts long-running fantasy football league

On Wednesday, the day before the first NFL football game of the season, owners gathered with their cheat sheets, analyzing player statistics, team rankings, rookie potential and position strength.

It's fantasy football season, with Michael Ripp leading the charge for the 30th straight year.

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Delta Panthers dominate Moffat County Bulldogs

Delta Panthers dominate Moffat County Bulldogs

Quarterback Drake Horn and receiver Colton Galvin connected on three long passes in the Panthers' throttling of Moffat County Friday night.

Horn racked up 170 passing yards and rushed for another 50 in the 40-7 victory. Galvin was credited with four receptions for 150 yards.

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Predator on the prowl

Predator on the prowl

A fossil uncovered near Cedaredge four decades ago is now on display in a museum on the campus of Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah.

While the full mosasaur skeleton is new to the BYU Museum of Paleontology, a cast of the skull has been showcased at the Welcome Center in Cedaredge for years.

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Closed for renovation

Closed for renovation

For public safety, and to prevent further damage, two homestead cabins in Escalante Canyon have been closed until June 2018.

The Walker Homestead and Captain Smith's Cabin, along with a historic water wheel, are listed on Colorado's Most Endangered Places List (2013) by Colorado Preservation Inc. Efforts are underway to secure funding for restoration and interpretation of the structures, which represent the pioneer spirit of Escalante Canyon.

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Gathering strays

Gathering strays

Like the parable Jesus told about searching for a lost sheep, Cowboy at the Church is gathering up strays and sharing the word of God. With sawdust covering the floor and dust settling on the chairs, the church "sanctuary" may seem a bit rustic, but families coming off the farm feel right at home.

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Artistry in glass

Artistry in glass

After traveling to the Western Slope regularly to fish at Crawford Reservoir, Dee Brown and her husband Joe decided Delta County would be a great place to retire.

Although the move became a reality 10 years ago, Dee has yet to kick back and relax.

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Curmudgeon and the Crone

Curmudgeon and the Crone

A curmudgeon is defined as a crusty, ill-tempered, and usually old man. Although retired, Rick Smith is not elderly, nor does he seem to be ill-tempered.

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Teachers, principals get high marks

Performance reports for Colorado teachers and principals released to the public for the first time show the majority of educators in Delta County received evaluation ratings of "effective" or higher.

A total of 88 percent of Colorado teachers and 98 percent in Delta County -- received an overall rating of "effective" or "highly effective" according to the metrics released by the Colorado Department of Education.

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Procrastinators weigh their options at college, job fair

Procrastinators weigh their options at college, job fair

Graduation is just three months away, but some Delta High School seniors are still undecided about post-graduation plans. To provide direction, DHS hosted a "Procrastinator's Fair" that featured six four-year and vocational colleges, as well as the opportunity to explore careers in the military, mechanics, health, emergency services, engineering, construction trades and more.

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Inspired by natural materials

Inspired by natural materials

Sylvia Karner has been cutting, coloring and styling hair in Delta since the mid 1970s -- nearly as long as she's been making jewelry. While beadwork has become increasingly popular in recent years, it's a hobby that has fascinated Sylvia for some time.

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Performing pooches

Performing pooches

Teaching a dog to obey simple commands like "Sit," "Heel" and "Come!" takes dedication and commitment.

But once your dog has the basics down, you might be tempted to teach him a few tricks, like rolling over or playing dead.

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Ringing in the New Year

Ringing in the New Year

In the closing days of 1999, fears of Y2K mounted. Doomsayers warned that when the date turned from Dec. 31, 1999, to Jan. 1, 2000, a programming bug would shut down computers across the globe.

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Actions speak louder than words

Actions speak louder than words

Middle school can have a profound impact on young lives. As a teacher at Delta Middle School, Bret Hamilton has not only seen how adolescent lives are shaped by their experiences in and out of the classroom, he also recognizes the impact middle school had on his own life.

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Crazy for Corvettes

Crazy for Corvettes

Not long after the first Chevrolet Corvette rolled off the production line in 1953, one of the original models was totaled in a single-car accident near Ron Austin's childhood home in Redding, Calif. The accident drew a crowd of curious neighbors, none of whom knew what a Corvette was at the time.

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A touch of elegance

A touch of elegance

Nancy Giordano is one of those crafty individuals who never runs out of ideas for beautiful, unique items, whether she's turning a pair of old blue jeans into an apron or stitching a colorful piece of fabric into an "on the go" purse.

She paints rocks, embellishes clothing with beads and creates magnets, but finds the most joy in jewelry making.

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Forged in steel

Forged in steel

A lover of history, John York volunteers at Fort Uncompahgre once a week. As a docent, he shares the history of the original fort, which was built by Antoine Robidoux in 1828. The Indians and trappers brought furs to trade for sugar, coffee, beads and other goods brought in from the United States and Mexico.

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In a class by herself

In a class by herself

Sheryl Williams has taught hundreds of students the art of painting with alcohol ink, but only one has actually stepped foot in her Delta studio. The remainder are online students who follow Sheryl's instructional videos via the internet.

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Quilts as art

Quilts as art

Every quilt is one-of-a-kind, snippets of colors and pattern layered together to create stunning table runners, wall hangings and bed covers. The process often begins with a pattern or even a kit, with precut fabric swatches in complementary colors.

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Don Benjamin: Author, cartoonist, teacher

Don Benjamin: Author, cartoonist, teacher

Cartooning may not be a good way to make a living, but it can certainly keep you entertained. Pencil in hand, you surround yourself with superheroes, whimsical animals and humorous characters who pepper your drawings with witty comments.

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Pine needle artistry

Pine needle artistry

A craft show on HGTV inspired Ruth Ann Hake to try her hand at pine needle basketry.

"I was just fascinated," Ruth Ann said, "so I bought a couple of books and that's really been my only instruction."

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Cake Wars Winner!

Cake Wars Winner!

V ictory is sweet for Melissa Zunich, the winner of Food Network Channel's Cake Wars.

Zunich, the owner of Sweet Cheeks Cakery in Delta, teamed up with a cousin to design an entry that won the judges over with its impressive details and "wonderful" hand painting.

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A wonder to behold

A wonder to behold

An entire room is dedicated to Lois Helgeland's incredible Victorian village, but that's just the beginning ... there are delightful discoveries to be found throughout her house at Christmastime.

To say Christmas is Lois' favorite holiday is clearly an understatement.

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Reaching new heights with the Civil Air Patrol

Reaching new heights with the Civil Air Patrol

Civil Air Patrol, the official auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force, performs about 85 percent of inland search and rescue missions in the U.S. The squadrons search for lost hikers or hunters, locate downed aircraft and transport emergency personnel or medical materials.

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Providing inspiration through liturgical art

Providing inspiration through liturgical art

Like the Shakers, Tim and Lyn Hinz express their faith through their craftsmanship. The Shakers believed that the excellence of their work was a form of worship; their furniture and crafts came to be known as "religion in wood."

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The Binky Patrol: Hugs from the heart

The Binky Patrol:    Hugs from the heart

Hugs for kids. That's how Connie Harris and Terri Brubaker describe the blankets they make through the Binky Patrol, a nationwide effort to reach out to needy kids with a comforting handmade blanket, or "binky."

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Artistic expressions

Artistic expressions

Sandra Williamson is a talented artist who expresses her creativity in a variety of ways, but none is more unique than her vinegar painted furniture and accessories.

The technique dates to the Industrial Revolution, she explains.

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