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Features

  • Conifer High School senior Kooper Hackmann has been on a running kick lately.

  • Former Inter-Canyon fire chief David MacBean blames a lack of oversight and his own personal problems for stealing $647,000 from the district.

    In an exclusive interview with the Courier, MacBean, who pleaded guilty in April to two counts of theft and one of embezzlement, also said the nominal stipend he received as chief led him to resent the job, and to use the district credit card “to surround myself with stuff.”

    He faces up to 27 years in prison at sentencing on June 24.

  • Kai Bianco is being called a “miracle baby” by Evergreen Fire/Rescue paramedics and Flight for Life personnel.

    Kai, who turned 1 on Saturday, was bitten in the head by the family dog on March 4. Not only did he survive, but according to his parents, he’s back to doing everything he was doing before the accident: pulling himself up to standing, babbling like babies do, and feeding himself.

  • Colorado Civil Air Patrol cadets in military uniforms and bright yellow vests were seen on Highway 73 on Saturday, searching for a hiker reported missing near Cub Creek Park in Evergreen.

    Fortunately, the search-and-rescue effort was just a ground training exercise for some CAP members and cadets. The nonprofit group includes an Evergreen squadron and several teenage cadets.

  • The cloudy skies parted Saturday long enough for the first patriotic Field of Honor ceremony to take place at the Evergreen Elks Lodge.

    Elks Lodge 2363, with the assistance of Evergreen’s American Legion Post 2001, dedicated 60 flags honoring servicemen and women as a precursor to Memorial Day. The flags, which can be seen from Fireweed Drive, will be flown until June 8.

  • A few days after stocking ponds at Buchanan Park with 300 pounds of rainbow trout, members of Evergreen Trout Unlimited were teaching youngsters how to catch them.

    From casting lines to tying flies, kids at the fishing camp were caught up in the learning curve on Saturday. 

    After reeling in a 17-inch trout earlier in the morning, 5-year-old Addison Kerper was among those watching Dr. Leonard Wheaton wind thread around a vise as he crafted a fly for trout.

  • For firefighter Craig O’Connell, working as a volunteer for the Evergreen Fire Department was all about the camaraderie.

    While it might sound like a cliché, the friendship and loyalty kindled among volunteer firefighters can’t be beat, said O’Connell, who was honored April 28 for serving for 26 years as a volunteer firefighter, including three as volunteer chief of the department. He currently works as a paid staffer and paramedic at South Metro Fire Rescue in Littleton.

  • Chow Down was the perfect place to get a puppy fix on Saturday afternoon.

    Dozens of people gathered behind the pet store in Bergen Village, awaiting a minivan loaded with 37 pups and 13 kittens that arrived from the Pryor Animal League in Pryor, Okla.

    Linda Biscorner, president of Oklahoma organization, drove more than 10 hours with the animals, hoping that the Evergreen Animal Protective League could help find them forever homes.

  • Matilda, a hearing assistance dog, knows what to do when people call Evergreen resident Kyle Walpole’s name or knock on his door at home or at work.

    Matilda “alerts” to the sound, then nudges Walpole in the leg and leads him to the source, he said. Walpole was diagnosed with Meniere’s disease in the 1990s and is hearing impaired. If someone is at the door, the black Labrador retriever leads Walpole there. If Walpole drops his keys, Matilda can lead him to them as well.

  • Heidi — a giant schnauzer who lives in Evergreen — takes her job as a pet therapy dog at Exempla Lutheran Hospital so seriously that she even has her own business card.

    Heidi’s card lists her favorite hobbies: riding in the car, meeting new people, going on long walks and eating snow. Typical dog fun, you might say.

  • “For a community to survive, it needs a gathering place,” said Bob Cardwell, recipient of the Leader of the Year award from Leadership Evergreen.

    During his years in the mountain community, Cardwell has been directly involved in creating recreational opportunities and facilities for residents.

    Working with the Evergreen Park and Recreation District, Cardwell helped acquire property to create Buchanan Park and Rec Center. 

  • Chilly but enthralled youngsters in the play-school group at Buchanan Rec Center watched 300 pounds of rainbow trout make their way into Buchanan Ponds on Monday morning.

    "It was fun and wild," said John Ellis, who helped coordinate the fish launch with Evergreen Trout Unlimited.

    As a frigid wind whipped across the larger pond, T.J. Heyne of Liley Fisheries carried the wriggling fish in nets and released them.

    Youngsters Noah and Dawson Parker knelt by the edge of the water to help some of the trout make their way into the pond. 

  • A small sea of homemade pinwheels adorned the lawn outside Wilmot Elementary School on Friday, a silent tribute to peace and kindness.

    The pinwheels, created by students, teachers and parents, were part of the school’s celebration of the annual Day Without Hate. The day is set aside to promote nonviolence, unity and respect in schools.

  • Evergreen friends David Cuin and Ann Hopper Vickstrom have collaborated to create “Seasons of Evergreen,” a book that offers a present-day glimpse of their community.

    “We deliberately placed this as Evergreen now,” Vickstrom said.

    In writing the book with Cuin, Vickstrom said they focused on making it a personal reflection. Newcomers, longtime residents and visitors can use “Seasons of Evergreen” as a reference, she said.

  • Reaching the summit of a high mountain peak is secondary to maintaining good relationships with fellow climbers, said George Lowe, a mountaineer with more than 50 years experience.

    “The brotherhood of the rope is incredibly important to me,” Lowe said during his presentation at Mount Vernon Country Club on April 16. “The most critical message I want to leave is the companionship.”

  • Whipped cream and a red cherry made of artist's clay top the brightly colored “Court Jester Delight” ceramic egg on display at Evergreen National Bank.

    A dark yellow egg yolk is a stand-out feature of the “Half-Baked” ceramic egg. The “Snowflake” egg features intricate hand-painted snowflakes on a deep blue background.

    The three duck-egg-size eggs, along with about 150 more, are part of Evergreen’s seventh annual egg-decorating contest, a fund-raiser for the Evergreen Downtown Business Association.

  • Shelby Foley and Brandon Bianco have learned many life lessons in the five weeks since their 10-month-old son, Kai, was bitten by the family dog.

    They learned firsthand that life can change in an instant.

    They witnessed the kindness of paramedics, sheriff’s deputies and medical professionals, plus the outpouring of support that is typical for Evergreen.

    And, above all, they learned to trust that their son will recover, and they will weather the medical bills and the uncertainty of Kai’s future.

  • Blitz is back home.

    Denverite Kate Townsend was reunited with her small black Lab on April 1 after a family in the neighborhood south of Mount Falcon took Blitz in. The dog had been lost lost for 44 days, since she chased a deer Feb. 16 while Townsend was hiking with friends at Mount Falcon Open Space.

  • The sounds of groans and bodies hitting the floor emanated from Colorado Children’s Theatre on Sunday — along with a lot of laughter — as 20 young actors learned the art of stage combat.

    They learned how to fall – theatrically, of course – and how to throw a punch that looks realistic but doesn’t hurt the recipient. They also used swimming “noodles” as mock swords to learn how to perform a choreographed sword fight.

  • Saturday was all about the rites of spring at the Humphrey History Park and Museum.

    Visitors learned the basics of raising goats and composting, participated in a seed and chicken swap, and learned about raising herbs, making cheese and spinning thread during the Great Humphrey Animal and Seed Swap.