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Features

  • The Conifer Blues Festival rocked Norm Meyer’s ranch on Saturday and left everyone on a high note.

    The festival, celebrating its third year, raised money for the I Love U Guys Foundation, which creates and promotes safety programs for schools during emergencies.

    In September 2006, a gunman entered Platte Canyon High School and fatally shot student Emily Keyes. The I Love U Guys Foundation was named after Emily’s last text-message to her parents.

    Emily’s parents, Ellen and John-Michael Keyes, started the foundation in 2009.

  • After 24 years of teaching the history of the fur trade to Jefferson County students at its Outdoor Laboratory Schools, Bear the Mountain Man — a.k.a. Stephen Ham of Evergreen — has retired and is moving to Texas.

     

    “When I retired from the Outdoor Lab, it was the hardest thing I’ve ever done,” said Ham. “I just sat at the computer and cried.”

  • Conifer High School doubles as a community gathering place throughout the year, serving as everything from a wildfire-evacuation center to a slash-collection facility.

    On Aug. 23, Conifer High will be a night-long beacon of hope for those fighting cancer and the people who love them.

    The 2013 Relay for Life starts at 6 p.m. Aug. 23 at the Conifer High athletic fields.

  •  Evergreen resident Mariah Roberts is collecting clothing and other goods for impoverished Native Americans in Arizona and South Dakota. She is also hoping that someone will donate a truck to take the items to them — an expense that can be prohibitive, she said.

    Roberts is working through Native American Research and Preservation Inc., a nonprofit corporation that assists people living on reservations. The organization supplements government programs and is involved in efforts to preserve historic Native American culture and historic sites.

  •  “Drop the ducks!” shouted youngsters eagerly waiting to see more than 5,000 yellow duckies cascade over Evergreen Lake dam on Saturday afternoon.

     

    Minutes before the 1 p.m. launch that signaled one of the most important moments of Evergreen’s fourth annual Dam Ducky Derby, the tall ladder on an Evergreen Fire-Rescue truck began extending high into the air and rotating over the dam.

  • Toe tapping, head bobbing and hand clapping abounded this past weekend as jazz enthusiasts listened to a host of bands during the 12th annual Evergreen Jazz Festival.

    That was true for Pat, Anne and Jake Conroy of Mead, Colo., who took in the Jazz Festival for the first time. Pat and Anne, both 51, tagged along while their son Jake, 16, participated in the festival’s workshops for young jazz musicians.

  • By Devan Filchak

    For the Courier

    The arts came alive in Evergreen on Saturday evening as the sounds of music — and silence — filled the air on the first night of the annual Summerfest music and arts event at Buchanan Park.

  • Mix together dirt, water, paint and a bunch of toddlers at Evergreen Lake, and you get an hour of wet, messy fun.
    Nine children ages 2 to 5 gathered outside the Nature Center to learn about the fish that live in the lake. They learned that the lake is stocked with trout each year, and that the fish lay their eggs on the lake bottom.

  • The desire to meet and help others has brought two Wisconsin men to Colorado — on their bicycles.

    Dennis Knight, 62, and Dan Haas, 56, are passionate about seeing the country, riding from town to town and meeting people. They are on a 70-day ride that will end in Pueblo.

    They’re also passionate about making people more aware of human trafficking, both forced laborers and the human sex trade in Colorado and worldwide.

  • Location, location location.

    That’s Realtor-speak meaning that where a property is matters more than what it is. And in the case of a charming refurbished property just coming onto the Clear Creek County rental market, location really is everything.

  • Firefighter Terri McLaughlin is one of several women in the Evergreen Volunteer Fire Department who respond to calls, including those for wildland fires.

     

    A couple of weeks ago, McLaughlin and Evergreen firefighters Jeff Ashford, Byrne McKenna and Bill Atkins joined multiple mutual-aid crews working to contain the massive Black Forest Fire in Colorado Springs.

    “On the first day, we had live fire on top of us,” McLaughlin said. “We went to homes and worked on what could be saved.”

  • Scuba diving off the coast of California inspired Ryan Lockwood to write his first novel, a thriller set in the vast ocean.

     

    “I’d always wanted to write a novel. I really just dove into it,” said Lockwood, who grew up in Evergreen.

    Lockwood’s book, titled “Below,” is officially hitting the shelves at area bookstores this week. 

    “It’s based on a real-world current event,” said Lockwood.

  • About a dozen children sat around a campfire at the United Methodist Church of Evergreen on Sunday morning to talk about Father’s Day and how important dads are.

    Inside the sanctuary.

    Surrounded by cowboy hats, saddles, tack and horse statues.

  • Sometimes Evergreen’s hometown heroes aren’t necessarily in Evergreen.

    For Brownie Girl Scout Troop 3110, this year’s hometown heroes were at Children’s Hospital. The Bergen Valley third-grade girls recently honored the doctors and nurses in the hospital’s Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders who have been taking care of troop member Kaymen Story.

  • Staunton State Park’s much-anticipated opening weekend didn’t disappoint.

    “It’s been crazy getting ready for this, but seeing people happy has made all of the blood, sweat and tears worth it,” said Jennifer Anderson, the park manager. “I couldn’t have asked for the weekend to be better.”

  • The weather last Wednesday morning was perfect for fly-fishing: slightly overcast, a slight nip in the air with calm winds — and it was a perfect day for a group of Evergreen Middle School sixth-graders to try the sport.

    Thirty students in the Recreation Sports class, with the help of several teachers and a few Evergreen Trout Unlimited volunteers, gathered around the Buchanan ponds to fish for rainbow trout. In 2½ hours, the students caught and released about a half-dozen fish.

  • It’s pretty obvious that an organization called Girls on the Run teaches girls how to run.

    But that’s only a small part of what girls in Girls on the Run does.

    The girls in third through fifth grade do community service projects, support each other and learn valuable lessons about navigating the challenges of their teen years.

  • Occasionally, when Evergreen Middle School science teacher Jeff McCarthy says goodbye to a class of students, he offers an offhand salute.

    He likens it to a gesture that late-night television comedian Johnny Carson often made to his right-hand man, Ed McMahon. It’s a sign of respect, a sign of farewell.

    McCarthy may make that offhand salute on May 30, the last day of this school year, when he says goodbye to his last class of eighth-graders. McCarthy, 63, is retiring after 35 years of teaching, 21 of them at EMS.

  • Bergen Meadow kindergartners learned about biology and life on a farm by watching eggs hatch into tiny chicks for the past few weeks.

    The first chick pecked its way out of its egg on April 29, and the children were enthralled with the sight of new life.

    Hatching eggs is an annual event at Bergen Meadow, and older students get excited as they relive the time when the eggs hatched in their kindergarten classrooms.

    Peggy Miller, the school’s principal, even donned a chicken hat that morning to signal the event.

  • On a chilly Saturday afternoon, Rachel Emmer walks briskly across a large, smooth field in Buchanan Park where vegetables and other plants will be growing in the not-too-distant future.

     

    “We’re so excited to be at this stage,” Emmer said about the long-range community garden project.

    After six years of planning, Emmer, interim executive director of Evergreen’s Alliance for Sustainability, and others involved in the project are finally seeing the garden take shape.