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We need our community paper

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By The Staff

In many ways, the Canyon Courier is the lifeblood of our community. The Courier is the only comprehensive source of timely information about what is happening in Evergreen and what is happening to Evergreen. Without the Courier, there would be no way for most of us to know of the many important local issues that affect our health, safety, property taxes, property values and much more. The Courier is our only timely source of information about the behavior (and misbehavior) of our elected and unelected officials at the local and county level. It presents broad coverage of much-needed news, not just boosterism.

As an unincorporated community with no formal government, we are mostly controlled by the Taj Mahal down the hill. We struggle to get Jeffco to understand our local problems and concerns and respond to them effectively. We have a water district, the EPRD, the Chamber of Commerce, the Seniors’ Resource Center, a number of churches, good schools, the library, and arts and sports groups, yet we cannot really define where the borders of Evergreen are. We live here because we love the small community feel and the mountains. Evergreen has a large number of volunteer groups, about 150, that perform many services. Evergreen needs a community newspaper to hold all of this together, and the Canyon Courier fills that role.

In these days of rising costs and declining revenues, newspapers are struggling. The Courier has been forced to shrink in size and staff. If the Courier does not survive, and hopefully thrive, we will no longer have any good source of up-to-date local information. Its survival is critical to the community, and to all of us individuals in the community.

You think the Denver Post would fill the gap if the Courier was lost? Think again. The Post is also shrinking and struggling to survive. When was the last time you saw anything in the Post about Evergreen issues? Television? Maybe if a mountain lion attacks someone in their living room. The Internet? No. The Internet does not supply comprehensive local news. If it offers anything at all on a local scale, it is mainly unfiltered input from various people with their individual biases and agendas.

Other local publications cannot fill the essential role of our weekly newspaper. They publish some feature stories and promote businesses but don’t report general news, and don’t do any investigative reporting. They could not respond quickly to breaking news. That is not a criticism; they simply have different roles.

Evergreen has in the past come together to support assets like the Grove, the Lake, Elk Meadow, and our parks. We need to come together now to protect this community asset, the Courier.

To keep this vital asset, we all need to help by actively encouraging our friends and neighbors to subscribe and read the Courier.

We need to make a point of telling local businesses that we see and respond to ads in the Courier.

Garth Coombs, a retired chemical engineer, and Jim Peterson, a retired geologist, are members of the Curmudgeons.