Morning photo: Out and about …

Summit sailing … and more!

Sailboats on Dillon Reservoir.

By Bob Berwyn

SUMMIT COUNTY — I’ve often admired the sailboats on Dillon Reservoir from afar, but I’ve rarely had the chance to see them up close. But last weekend, during a day on the water with local guide’s from Big Ed’s Fishing Ventures, we motored right past a line of sailboats preparing for an afternoon race. For a couple of minutes, we were right in the middle of the action, close enough to hear the sails snapping. Continue reading

Summit County: Bristlecone Foundation legacy forest campaign seeking volunteers for June 2 tree-planting

Help grow Summit County's future forest with the Bristlecone Foundation. PHOTO BY BOB BERWYN.

Proceeds benefit local hospice and home care

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY — Along with efforts by the U.S. Forest Service to reforest local campgrounds, the Bristlecone Foundation will continue its legacy forest campaign with another round of planting on June 2.

The campaign, now in its third year, benefits the home care and hospice patients of Bristlecone Health Services and helps renew the forests of Summit County. To date, more than 4,000 trees have been planted around the county, with each seedling telling a story of love and compassion. Continue reading

Summit County: Dead kayaker identified as Dillon resident

A kayaker died July 14 in the Blue River, north of Silverthorne, Colorado.

High flows persist; whitewater websites warn of logs and other obstacles in high country streams

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY — A kayaker who died July 14 in the Blue River has been identified as 50-year-old William Keen, of Dillon.

The accident occurred north of Silverthorne near the Columbine take-out at mile marker 111 along Highway 9.

The coroner’s office is investigating the accident, believed to be a drowning. But since the death was not witnessed an autopsy has been ordered to determine the exact cause of death.

In a followup press release,  coroner Joanne Richardson said Keen leaves behind a wife and four children.

The coroner’s office was called to the scene about 2:20 p.m. after a group of rafters reported seeing a male face-down in the water. The rafters reportedly had seen the decedent kayaking a few minutes earlier, wearing a helmet and life vest.

The rafters started CPR on the man and called 911 at 1:36 p.m.

“We suspect drowning but cannot rule out a medical event. We do not have a positive ID but the decedent is believed to be a Summit County resident. I do not expect to have a name until tomorrow,” Summit County Coroner Joanne Richardson said in a press release.

The Blue River north of Silverthorne has been running high for the past several weeks, with releases from Dillon Reservoir and inflows from tributaries adding to flows of 2,000 cubic feet per second and more.

Summit County Sheriff’s office joins Twitterverse

Many other local jurisdictions already using social media channels

SUMMIT COUNTY — The Summit County Sheriff’s Office is the first countywide entity to start broadcasting via a Twitter channel.  According to Sheriff John Minor, the SCSO is now posting information as @SummitSheriffCO.  Tweets will include emergency alerts, public service announcements and other notifications. Continue reading

Summit County: Lower Blue River edges close to flood stage

Denver Water raises outflow from Dillon Reservoir, cuts diversions through Roberts Tunnel, expects reservoir to fill in about 2 weeks

The Lower Blue is flowing at about 1,750 cubic feet, just below flood stage.

A sign at the base of the dam gives information on the history of the facility.

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY — The Lower Blue River is flowing perilously close to its banks, as Denver Water increased the flow to 1,750 cfs Thursday. Flooding issues along the Lower Blue start to become more serious at a flow of about 1,800 cfs, but Denver Water’s Bob Steger said he’s hoping the inflow will soon begin to decrease, as predicted by the Colorado Basin River Forecast Center.

Denver Water is also reducing its diversions via the Roberts Tunnel from 250 down to 100 cubic feet per second, as the Front Range reservoirs in the system are nearly full. Continue reading

Summit County: Welcome center boosts local, state tourism

Cutting the ribbon at the Colorado Welcome Center in Silverthorne.

Remodeled Outlets at Silverthorne site could see 100,000 visitors annually

By Bob Berwyn

SUMMIT COUNTY — Local and state officials emphasized the economic importance of Colorado’s tourism industry Thursday as they cut the ribbon on a new state welcome center at the Outlets at Silverthorne.

“This is an outstanding opportunity to promote to our visitors everything that Summit County, and the state as a whole, has to offer. The recently-remodeled space will be a valuable amenity for Summit County visitors,” said Silverthorne Mayor Dave Koop.

Summit County and the rest of Colorado will get another shot of great publicity next summer, when Keystone hosts TBEX’12, an annual convention of  online travel journalists. Read about TBEX’12 in this Summit Voice story.

“We are thrilled to add our 11th Colorado Welcome Center in Silverthorne. The strategic location of this welcome center will allow us to reach skiers and other travelers and encourage them to explore other parts of the state,” said Al White, director of the Colorado Tourism Office. Continue reading

Summit County: Some TLC for local forests

Time to give Summit County forests some TLC with the Bristlecone Foundation's Legacy Forest campaign.

Tree-planting volunteers needed for June 4 Legacy Forest project

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY — After a 10-year pine-beetle epidemic Summit County’s forests are in need of some TLC, and the Bristlecone Foundation is once again helping the restoration efforts with a countywide tree-planting day coming up June 4.

Volunteers are still needed for the foundation’s Legacy Forest planting day. Individuals or groups can sign up online to plant seedlings in all local towns. Check-in starts promptly at 9 a.m. at each planting site and the planting should finished by 12 p.m. All volunteers will receive a complimentary ticket to the Legacy Forest Bluegrass Jam and are also eligible for special lodging discounts.

The Bluegrass Jam starts at 6 p.m. at the Breckenridge Riverwalk Center with local favorite Randall McKinnon Band followed by Denver-based Oakhurst.

Tickets can be purchased online for $12. Each ticket sold will also plant a seedling in Summit County. The Bristlecone Foundation Legacy Forest campaign started in 2010 to help support the home care and hospice patients of Bristlecone Health Services and also renew the forests of Summit County and the beauty of our mountains. Continue reading

Summit County: Strikers soccer slideshow

Spring season ends with a weekend triple-header

SUMMIT STRIKERS U-13, 2011 SPRING SEASON: 3 - Graham Gaspard, 7 - Dylan Berwyn, 8 - Ruben Valencia, 9 - Omar Esparza, 11 - Triza Marshall, 12.- Kellen Wade, 14 - Johnathan Gutierrez, 15 - Daniel Chavez, 16 - Mauricio Lozano , 17 - Cole Buller, 20 - Alfonso Zuno, 21 - Matthew Resignolo, 22 - Alec Himmelstein, 44 - Haakon George.

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY — The Summit Strikers Fútbol Club U-13 boys team ended its spring season with three games in two days, including a double win on a Saturday double-header. The boys started practice when snow was still knee-deep outside, holding their drills indoors in elementary school gyms across the county. All the games except the very last one were away games against Front Range teams that had already been playing outdoors for many weeks. But the patient coaching of Julio Mora paid off the last weekend when the team gelled and scored more nearly a dozen goals in three games. The team consistently showed good sportsmanship, teamwork and a sense of fair play, rarely getting called for fouls, Congratulations to the Strikers and good luck in the coming fall season. Oh, and since it’s half-time during the UEFA Champions League final as I;m posting this — Go FC Barcelona! Summit County is fortunate to have such a great soccer program. Check out the summer camp offerings at the High Country Soccer website.

Continue reading

Letter: Lowe’s impacts will be widespread

Reader offers a list of local businesses that could feel the effects of a new big-box retailer

A Google Earth map shows the general location of a proposed Lowe's in Silverthorne.

To Whom It May Concern:

So, when out driving the other day I noticed that they are in the beginnings of starting the Lowe’s project.  I was a little saddened when thinking about how this will affect the many local home improvement stores, including my own, located in or around Summit County.

I recall learning in my education when large corporations come into small communities how “Mom-and-Pop” businesses are threatened. This stresses the importance of supporting local independent businesses to residents and visitors. As the population of the county grows survival of local business has been a concern, and they have strained to compete with deep-pocketed corporate chains, and Lowe’s is just adding to that concern.  Continue reading

Summit County: Watching the waters

Denver Water upping flows in Lower Blue River to 1,250 cfs; Dillon reservoir drawn down to lowest level  since 2003

A chilly, wet spring has kept stream flows in check, but the waters will rise with warmer weather.

By Bob Berwyn

SUMMIT COUNTY — Big flows have started in the Lower Blue, north of Silverthorne, as Denver Water upped releases from Dillon Reservoir to about 1,000 cubic feet per second. That will increase to 1,100 cfs Saturday and again Sunday, up to 1,250 cfs.

Frisco-based Kodi rafting is already offering commercial trips on the Lower Blue, and all local raft companies are looking forward to a good season, with runoff likely to extend well into the summer months this year.

Lowering the level of Dillon Reservoir now will help reduce the risk of flooding in low-lying Silverthorne neighborhoods later, when flows peak. Flooding in Silverthorne occurs when the reservoir is full and the overflow heads down the Lower Blue Valley. Continue reading

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