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Middle school grins and bears a bear

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By Deb Hurley Brobst

A young black bear decided to hang out at Evergreen Middle School on Sept. 11, prompting the school to lock its doors and keep students inside all day. Stingers Soccer also canceled after-school practices on the EMS fields.

Staff members spotted the bruin soon after the school day started. It hung out in a tree near the temporary buildings, then climbed down and loped along the sidewalk after the assistant principal and facility manager before climbing into another tree just north of the school property near the lower field, according to principal Kristopher Schuh. The bear also tried to get into the school’s trash bins.

Students and staff watched the bear, many taking photos and some excited to see a wild bear. The bear took one more stroll around the building at 3:30 p.m. before lumbering off about 4 p.m., Schuh said.

According to Schuh, a Division of Wildlife officer was on site to monitor the bear’s activities. The officer said the bear, which is tagged, was from the Boulder area. It had been logged in by DOW on Sept. 4, so it took seven days for it to make the trek to Evergreen.

Sheriff’s deputies ensured students were safe as they were dismissed from school. Parents were notified of the situation via the school district’s School Messenger system.

According to Schuh, “We spent the entire day saying, ‘Happy Bear Day’ and joked about changing our nickname to the Bears. After all, we’ve never had a Ram dine on our property, poop on our sidewalk, scatter our staff members, keep our students inside and spend the entire day napping in our tree.”

Contact Deb Hurley Brobst at deb@evergreenco.com or 303-350-1041. Check www.CanyonCourier.com for updates.