Local Author Spotlight

MY LOVED ONE SHINES ON!

A GIFT FROM BEYOND

By Disa Van Orman & Dylan Skye Goedeker
Oh, you are wrong if you think I’m gone, I am right there in your favorite song…” is how their new adventure began. Grandmother and Grandson. Gebra and Buffalo Boy. Disa and Dylan.

A poem is given to a grandmother by her 6-year-old grandson who dies suddenly. In great pain, she intends to write about the wonderful times they shared. Instead, she hears her amazing grandson tell her a poem that lets her know that he is not truly gone and is still with her.

Gebra cannot see or touch him as she did before. Yet, if she uses all her senses, she is aware of his presence. As an artist and photographer, Disa uses her beautiful photographs of animals and nature to bring to life the feelings and emotions this amazing child is sharing to repair his family’s broken heart.

Dylan sends her signs that he is there, right by her side. As she writes his words, he asks her to share them with the world, to young and old, to give hope to others that their loved one shines on too.

Hey, don’t forget that part about blossom, because I want this to end with, ‘Man… that would be awesome!!’

Learn more at MyLovedOneShinesOn.com

THREE SILLY WORDS:

A TALE OF A PIZZA, A TREEHOUSE AND A SHARK

Written By Ericka Harrell & Illustrated by Krysta Parr
Three silly words, one silly story! What do you get when you take two best friends, one little brother, a bunch of imagination, and oodles of teamwork? Oh yes, and let’s not forget… a pizza, a treehouse and a shark?!? One silly story!

A little about Three Silly Words…
Ericka Harrell is a new children’s book author based in Parker. Her illustrator, Krysta Parr, is based in Centennial.

Last year, Krysta and Ericka were chosen to be bridesmaids in their dear friend’s wedding. Having never met before, the two began talking, and lo and behold, they both had life-long dreams of writing and illustrating children’s books. Last fall, after 17 years of service at Ericka’s beloved company, she hung up her corporate high heels and decided to chase her dream of becoming a children’s book author full time. Krysta also recently accepted her dream job and is working as a graphic artist at a large company.

Ericka’s children inspired her book series. When they were little and couldn’t fall asleep, Ericka would ask them to think of three words, any three words, and she would make up a silly story that included all of them. The more unrelated the words, the sillier the story! Ten years later, Three Silly Words, the book series, was born!

All of the “three silly words” used in Ericka’s books are created by her children, their silly friends, and the young students she reads to. Ericka has two titles self-published to date, “Three Silly Words: The Tale of a Pizza, a Treehouse and a Shark,” and “Three Silly Words: The Tale of a Car, a Banana and a Ladybug.” Both are available on Amazon. Her first title is also available on BarnesandNoble.com.

From The Publisher

Love for Service

February is a time when our minds usually shift to thoughts of love. With a major holiday smack dab in the middle of February, it’s a bit hard to not be surrounded with thoughts of love. Everywhere you look are shades of pink and heart shaped everything.

Valentine’s Day is one of my favorite holidays because it gives us a chance to spread a little extra love around. However, this year I’d like to challenge our readers to focus on a different kind of love. A love for service.

All of us have an obligation to our community. This obligation is simple, every day do at least one thing to make our community a better place. This is something that I learned as a young cub scout and a philosophy that I work to live by. It stemmed from my first camp out as a cub scout. All of us boys had a great time learning how to use a pocket knife, build a fire, pitch a tent, tend a trail and many other outdoor skills. When it was time to wrap things up, our den leader said something simple that has always stuck with me. He said “Okay boys, it’s time to clean up our camp site. Make sure you leave it in better shape than you found it…so the next group can have an even better time than we did.”

What a powerful directive. Leave our campsite…or our community…a little better than we found it so the next group can have an even better time. This simple yet effective philosophy has the power to change the world.

Our community is served by an incredible amount of amazing non-profits and groups that were created for the service of others. I know many of us donate money to these causes on a regular basis. However, I’d like to challenge you to a different approach. Instead of donating more money (if you donate, please continue to do so) this year let’s all make a commitment to also donate TIME. If each of us decide to donate one hour of time in service each month to a community group or non-profit we will have given a contribution of love that is hard to match.

We’ve compiled a list of some amazing local community groups that serve others. Take a moment to read through our list and choose one…or a couple… to donate time to. If you don’t see one that strikes you then do some research and find one.

Don’t let this stop with your service though. Share this powerful gift with your friends and family. Invite them to accept the challenge as well. With a small amount of effort we can create a love for service that has the power to change our community…and our world!

Have a happy February and embrace your new love for service.

EXPERIENCE PARKER

to-do

Love Is in the Air at Douglas County Libraries in Parker!

For those with a love for the finer things, there’s the Love Is in the Air: Wine & Cheese Pairing
February 16th at 7pm, adults 21 and older will learn sweet tips for pairing, sampling and enjoying wine and cheese together. Great idea for a girl’s night out or a date night! Register by calling 303-791-7323 or go to DCL.org.

Love Is in the Air: Caturday Morning & Dog Day Afternoon
Nothing spreads love like a happy tail wag. Drop by and fall in love with a furry friend at the library’s pet extravaganza; including a pet adoption van, lots of activities, and crafts at make and take stations. Make pet treats, cat/dog bows, braided rope toys, cat gardens and cat beds. If you don’t have a pet to craft for, you can make a cat bed that will be donated to a local animal shelter and spread the love even further! Drop in for fun that’s great for all ages – no registration required! The Love-Fest commences Saturday, February 18th, 10am-12pm

local

The Art of Pizza – Artisan Pizza Co

Artisan Pizza Co is a new restaurant NOW OPEN in Parker. This fast-casual restaurant concept offers hand crafted 11” Neapolitan style Signature Pizzas and delicious Signature Salads made to order with the freshest, quality ingredients. Their dough is homemade and is prepared daily. You may choose a Signature Pizza or Salad off the menu or build your own creation, choosing from over 40 different ingredients, for the same price. They cook their delicious pizzas in a modern, gas-fired oven which makes baking time only a matter of minutes.

While brainstorming ideas for this restaurant, it was very important to the owners to support our beautiful state of Colorado. They have achieved that goal by sourcing local meats and produce and offering only Colorado craft beer. The fact that Colorado is known to have some of the finest craft beers in the world made this decision easy! Wine is also available.

Artisan Pizza Co is owned by Jon and Sandra Liberati, Parker residents of 15 years. Artisan Pizza Co is not a franchise. Being in the restaurant industry for 25 years; it’s a dream realized for Jon. Jon and Sandra wanted to open a restaurant in their beloved Parker where they could serve their community with quality food, great service and in a welcoming environment. They look forward to serving your family!

Artisan Pizza Co – 12311 Pine Bluffs Way #107
For take-out orders call 303.840.0518
Open Sun-Thurs 11-9/Fri and Sat 11-10
Find them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Yelp – Website currently under construction

where in town?

A Monthly Scavenger Hunt

Where are we this month? Do you know Where in Parker you can find this? Look through the magnifying glass and see!

FIND & WIN!!!
Would you like a $100 gift certificate to Trappers Chop House? To win simply guess correctly where in Parker this is. We will randomly draw a winner from all correct entries! Enter online HERE – GOOD LUCK!

LAST MONTH’S HUNT ANSWER
Did you guess it? Have you seen it? The photo from January’s issue was of the Mammoth fossil on display in Town Hall! It’s true; at one time, Parker was the home to Wooly Mammoths. Years ago, a construction crew came upon these fossils in Northwest Parker. Lucky for us, the Town of Parker was able to keep these impressive remains of some of Parker’s earliest residents for display.

READY TO SERVE

READY TO SERVE

ARE YOU READY TO MAKE YOUR WORLD A BETTER PLACE? FIND THE PERFECT MATCH FOR YOUR VOLUNTEER TIME WITH OUR LOCAL SERVICE DIRECTORY.

We asked our readers where they like to volunteer time locally and they suggested some amazing organizations. Take a moment to find the perfect place to donate at least one hour a month in service of our community. You will be happy you did and our community will be a better place for it!

 


More ways to connect with volunteer opportunities:

JUST SERVE

JustServe.org is a website which lists all the different volunteer opportunities available in communities across the country. Not only do users have access to volunteer listings but they can actually sign up for a project with a simple click. Simply entering a city name, state or zip code puts you well on your way to weeks of service opportunities. Individuals heading up service projects, churches and non-profit organizations can also use the website to post their needs. Another great aspect of the website is once a person has registered as a volunteer; they receive alerts about other service opportunities and can even get reminders for projects on their calendar. This is a great tool for individuals and families who want to serve. This is also a fantastic tool for students looking to fulfill their required community service hours for graduation to find projects and opportunities meaningful for them and foster a dedication to service.

VOLUNTEER CONNECT

Volunteer Connect of Douglas County, Colorado, is a community resource provided by the Partnership of Douglas County Governments. The purpose of this site is to bring organizations in need of volunteers in touch with the individuals in our community who are looking for ways to help. This portal allows volunteers to go to one place to view numerous local opportunities.

Users can see recently posted opportunities on the front page of the site as well as click and sign up to volunteer or enter a request for volunteers for your organization. To look for a volunteer opportunity that speaks to you or request volunteers for your next philanthropy project, go to volunteerconnectdc.org.

 


 

Parker Parks & Recreation

ParkerRec.com
303.805.6300
The mission of the Town of Parker Department of Parks, Recreation and Open Space is to provide quality parks and recreation facilities and services to meet the needs of our community by utilizing the resources of our team, and fostering an environment that encourages support, creativity and integrity.

We often use volunteers coaches in our Sports department, volunteers to help with our Race series and other large events held throughout the year (i.e. Barker Days, Fright Night).

Rosie’s Ranch

rosiesranch.com
720.852.0927
It is our dream and mission at Rosie’s Ranch to provide a family centered atmosphere where children with deafness or oral language challenges will expand their listening, verbal & reading skills by engaging in activities with horses under the guidance of a highly trained and qualified staff. Volunteers are needed in the barn, grooming and leading horses and in the office.

There are numerous ways to help out at the ranch without being in contact with the horses, yet those with horse experience may immediately lend a hand with our equine buddies.
Join the Rodies Ranch family today!

Relay For Life-American Cancer Society

relayforlife.org/secco
720.524.5453
The American Cancer Society Relay For Life represents the hope that those lost to cancer will never be forgotten, that those who face cancer will be supported, and that one day cancer will be eliminated. Relay For Life is more than just a fundraiser. It’s a life-changing experience.

You can volunteer in several ways: • Start a team/Participate – get your friends, family, coworkers, or organization together and forma team to join us at the event. • Planning Committee or Day of Help- join us as we plan the actual Relay event, or help with day of responsibilities. It’s a little bit more involved, but it can be an amazing experience to work with all the team captains.

Parker Task Force

parkertaskforce.org
303-841-3460
The Parker Task Force is dedicated to providing individuals and families in our community with food, limited financial assistance and other support services to help them become self-sufficient. These services will be delivered with compassion, dignity and respect by our 100% volunteer staff.

The Parker Task Force conducts (8) food drives every year and needs volunteers help to collect donations.

Terolyn Horse Rescue, Inc

terolynhorserescue.org
303-243-1147
Terolyn Horse Rescue, a non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation, which helps at-risk, neglected, and abused horses.
We focus mainly on horses that have been dumped at the slaughter auctions and kill pens, often rescuing the traumatized and malnourished animals just hours before they are loaded on a truck bound for slaughter in Canada or Mexico. We evaluate the condition of each rescued animal. Working closely with veterinarians and experienced farriers, we rehabilitate each horse with love and expert care. Most are then adopted out to loving homes. Those who can’t be adopted will spend the rest of their lives on our beautiful 100+ acre ranch in Elizabeth, CO.

We need help cleaning stalls, and maintaining the facility. Grooming horses. For the more experienced volunteers: help exercising the rescue horses.

Douglas Land Conservancy

douglaslandconservancy.org
303-688-8025
Douglas Land Conservancy is a 501 (c) 3 non-partisan, non-profit land trust dedicated to the protection and conservation of the natural character, habitat, and open space of the central front range region of Colorado, including Douglas County and surrounding areas. DLC could use volunteers with the following experience: Grant research and writing; technology support; marketing expertise for development of communication materials; writing articles for local publications; biologists, naturalists, or other science expertise to assist with guided hikes.

Project C.U.R.E.

projectcure.org
303-792-0729
Project C.U.R.E. is the largest provider of donated medical supplies and equipment to developing countries around the world.

Volunteer in our warehouse sorting through medical supplies, packing inventory loading shipping containers or driving donation pick up trucks. C.U.R.E. Clinics is looking for medical volunteers to travel internationally on medical missions. Do you want to personally deliver health and hope to the world? Join one of our teams!

Castle Rock Senior Activity Center

castlerockseniorcenter.org
303-688-9498
The Castle Rock Senior Activity Center is where people 50+ gather, go places, make friends for life, get involved in our community, try new things, stay active in sports and exercise, eat often, laugh and just hang out together. The more than 900 members choose from over 140 activities.

There’s a role for everyone serving meals, calling bingo, driving seniors around town, driving buses on trips, helping at events or in the office, leading special interest groups, hosting trips, serving on committees, and more. Our transportation program provides 650 rides a month for seniors, all by volunteer drivers.

Naked Shoes, Inc.

nakedshoesinc.org
303-249-6023
Our mission is to provide shoes, socks, and positive affirmations to those in need in Colorado. We believe that covering feet is a simple thing that can make a BIG impact in the life, health, and success of people. We’re starting by serving those in need here in Colorado, but we know that this is just the beginning!

We are looking for creative people to run fund raisers in the local schools in Douglas County and other small businesses. Projects will be from start to collection.

Caleb’s Heart Ministries

calebsheart.com
720-352-5943
We are a Men’s Ministry, founded and located in Parker for 14 years. We take successful and broken men and offer them a place where they can belong before they believe. It is safe place to share your story, without judgment or plastic faith trying to press. “A gathering of broken men seeking after Jesus and drawing strength from each other”—Papa T.

We have weekly gatherings throughout the year where we serve food and do work in the forest for the ministry. Manual labor along with simple food prep and clean up. For men only.

Susan G. Komen Colorado

komencolorado.org
303.744.2088
Vision: A world without breast cancer. Mission: Save lives by meeting the most critical needs in our communities and investing in breakthrough research to prevent and cure breast cancer. Goal: Within the next decade, reduce current number of breast cancer deaths by 50%.

General volunteer help throughout the year – Office Administrative help, Event Planning, Community Educator, Operational Committee.

Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado

voc.org
303-715-1010
Since 1984, Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado (VOC) has been motivating and enabling people to become active stewards of Colorado’s natural resources.

VOC works with conservation and land agencies and relies on thousands of people annually to provide a volunteer workforce for outdoor stewardship projects. These projects take place across Colorado – from city parks and open spaces, to grasslands and foothills, to alpine meadows and peaks.

VOC seeks volunteers of all ages and from all walks of life to help with trail construction and maintenance, weed removal, habitat restoration, gardening and planting, forestry management, recreational improvement, and historic preservation. Opportunities are also available to help with photographing on projects, cooking for volunteers in the great outdoors, managing tools, and more!

Freedom Service Dogs of America

freedomservicedogs.org
303-922-6231
Freedom Service Dogs is a nonprofit organization that enhances the lives of people with disabilities by rescuing dogs and custom training them for individual client needs. Clients include children, veterans and active duty military, and other adults. Their disabilities include autism, traumatic brain injury, cerebral palsy, spinal cord injuries, muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis, and post-traumatic stress disorder.

Volunteers are critical to accomplishing our mission. Volunteers can work on site enriching the lives of our dogs. Enrichment includes play time, walking, brushing and quiet time with our dogs. We also have a weekend fostering program where families foster dogs Friday afternoon through Monday morning. Both on-site work and fostering are on a flexible schedule. You can volunteer for shifts that fit your schedule.

Food Bank of the Rockies

foodbankrockies.org
303-371-9250
We help families thrive by efficiently procuring and distributing food and essentials to the hungry through our programs and partner agencies.

Volunteers pack food boxes, sort donated food, prepare agency orders, repack produce, distribute food at our mobile pantries, help in the office, and occasionally help with special events and promotions.

Parker Adventist Hospital

parkerhospital.org/PAH/Community/Volunteer
303-269-4971
At Parker Adventist Hospital, volunteers are essential in carrying out our mission of nurturing the health of the people in our community. Your wisdom, passion and experience can be used in a meaningful, life-changing way. Our volunteers provide unique contributions to the overall health and comfort of our patients, families, visitors, and staff.

Our volunteers choose Parker Hospital for a variety of reasons. Some know first-hand how overwhelming a hospital stay can be and want to make a difference in the lives of patients and their families.Many of our volunteers are active retirees who serve Parker Hospital as a way to stay involved in the community and have a passion for healthcare. We also have volunteers who are college and high school students who give their time and want to learn more about healthcare and what it’s like to work in a hospital. They are all an invaluable part of our hospital team.

Fresh Harvest Food Bank

FreshHarvestFoodBank.org
720-381-6169
Fresh Harvest Food Bank’s mission is to provide nutrition, support and education to families in need throughout Douglas County and surrounding areas. Fresh Harvest provides support directly to local families as well as other local nonprofit agencies without a cost. Fresh Harvest is a public charity that is not governmentally funded.

Fresh Harvest serves our community of neighbors in need through community generosity, is volunteer powered! Tasks vary daily: in-processing donations, organizing, stocking, date checks, counting, bagging toiletry items, recipe assembly, assembling Wellness Packs, Bag Packing Nights, Distribution Days, making calls, paper cutting, hanging-up clothing, hosting food drives and more!

Edwards Foundation for Rescued Animals

EdwardsAnimals.com
303-941-8338
The Edwards Foundation offers sanctuary for animals which are neglected or deprived of the possibility to thrive. Volunteers learn about the care and feeding of animals such as horses, cows, llamas, goats and fowl. We are committed to the education of the public about farm animals and especially animals in need of special care.

Volunteers help with cleaning, feeding, brushing and learning the proper care of animals and safery. Volunteers can help with gathering eggs, felting despensing medications and trimming feet.

Front Range Divorce Center

frdivorcecenter.org
303-210-2607
Front Range Divorce Center is a multi-disciplinary non-profit organization working to empower individuals before, during , and after divorce. We provide Hope, Encouragement and Community to individuals no matter where they are in the process of untying the knot.

We are looking for volunteers to help us bring awareness of the resources we provide to our local communities.
Also looking for volunteers to help with social media postings and help with community events/fundraisers

Pedaling4parkinsons

Pedaling4parkinsons.org
(888) 548-3002 x2
Research shows that bicycling can have tremendous benefits to people with Parkinson’s, well beyond those enjoyed by all cyclists. Vigorous cycling can sometimes reduce symptoms for hours or days afterwards. If you, or someone you know has Parkinson’s, please consider this opportunity to ride again, and help increase awareness of the many benefits of cycling. All proceeds go to the Michael J Fox Foundation for Parkinsons Research.

We are having our annual ride on June 24. The ride starts at Sweetwater Park in Lone Tree and goes through Parker and Highlands Ranch. We will need volunteers for our aid stations and at our expo in sweetwater park. Come join us for a fun day for a great cause! Email us at info@pedaling4parkinsons.org

SECOR

secorcares.com
720-842-5621
Vision: to grow a team of committed volunteers and employees implementing our services to 5,000 of the 45,000 families in need in our 42 zip codes, while collaborating with other like-minded organizations as well as planting the SECOR model in 5 plus additional locations.

MARKET TEAM MEMBER: Accompany our guests through our free food Market. ADVOCATES: Let your voice be heard in the public square about the ravages and solutions to Suburban Poverty.
“THE WAITING ROOM”: While our guests are waiting to shop for food, sit with them as a friend to create a normal space for them to breathe. WRITERS: Foundation and grant writers to obtain funds to sustain SECOR. TRUCK DRIVERS: You would be with another person too help with pick-ups at our partner stores. WAREHOUSE: When the food comes in, help process the produce, check dates on cans, etc., before putting it on the shelves for our guests. YOUR PASSION: We love being creative and will talk and process together with you to discover the best fit for how God has wired you to serve.

Lincoln Meadows Senior Living

www.spectrumretirement.com
303-790-1910 ext 239
Lincoln Meadows is a private independent, assisted living and memory care community that offers continuous care to help our residents thrive. We are very involved in our community as volunteers to American cancer society , heart association as well as we accept volunteers to help our seniors with intergenerational socializing, through games , events and more.

Lincoln Meadows is in need of volunteers to help facilitate /host new games, computer time, story’s, intergenerational activitys and more. We also need craft minded people to help with monthly themed decorations and events. Any one with computer skills to help with monthly informative flyers, and more!

Miracle Party

www.miracleparty.org
303-250-6728
Our organization pays tribute to all pediatric cancer and blood disorder children by giving them a night to forget about doctors and hospitals. We honor the hero’s they are and pay special tribute to our angels, who were taken too soon. Fighting Childhood Cancer One Party at a Time!!

We need volunteers for setup of 100,000 sqft venue. Fundraising. The night of the event we need volunteers for family check-in, décor, tear down, runners, monitoring games, face painting, limo rides. This event will change your life!!

Love Your Library – Be a Volunteer!

Love Your Library
Be a Volunteer!

Douglas County Libraries (DCL) needs you! There are fantastic opportunities to lend your time and talents within the walls of the libraries. Whether you are looking for a regular volunteer position or you’re interested in participating in some of the great special events, there’s a spot for you! Here are just some of the volunteer opportunities available with Douglas County Libraries. To sign up for any of these, or to search for other library volunteer opportunities, visit VolunteerConnectDC.org and search on Douglas County Libraries.

Saturday Morning & Dog Day Afternoon – Parker

Volunteers Needed: Saturday, February 18th, 2017 from 9:30am-1:00pm
The program is a pet extravaganza, featuring a pet adoption van, activities, crafts and homemade pet treats. Volunteers will man the make-and-take area of the event and teach patrons how to make crafts. NOTE: The no-bake dog treats are made with peanut butter, so anyone with nut allergies should be advised. Volunteers will also help set up and break down the craft room.

Art of Spinning & Weaving – Parker

Volunteers Needed: Monday, April 3rd, 2017 – 3:45pm-6:30pm
Volunteers will assist with setting up and breaking down the event, as well as helping participants with weaving projects.

Saturday Surprise – Castle Rock

Volunteers Needed: Weekly on Saturday mornings (throughout 2017) from 9:30-11:45am
Saturday Surprise is for all ages and each drop-in session features different, fun themed projects for patrons to complete from 10-11:30am. DCL provides the materials to create fabulous crafts, cool art projects, or mini science projects. Past Saturday Surprise themes include building Eiffel Towers with cookies and frosting, special LEGO projects, painting pine cones, and making bird feeders. There’s something new and fun every week! Volunteers assist with setup and takedown of the program, and also assist participants during the program.

Bookstore Volunteers – Castle Rock

Volunteers Needed: Weekly on an assigned day/time; times are flexible during library hours.
DCL’s Second Chapter bookstore is run entirely by volunteers. The bookstore is stocked with both book donations from patrons and books that are withdrawn from the library’s collection, so volunteers sort and evaluate donations, stock, straighten and merchandise the materials in the bookstore. The books are sold to the public at greatly reduced prices and all proceeds benefit the Douglas County Libraries Foundation. This position requires physical work, such as lifting, bending and reaching. It also includes interacting with patrons who are browsing the bookstore.

Backcountry Recreation Fair – Lone Tree

Volunteers Needed: Saturday, March 11th, 2017 – 9:15am-2:30pm
Outdoor recreation experts from L.L. Bean and other organizations will be on hand with presentations and informational table talks to prepare outdoor enthusiasts and newbies to get out and safely enjoy our beautiful state. Volunteers will help with the program’s setup and takedown. They will also direct patrons/participants during the program and assist at stations as needed.

Battle of the Books – Lone Tree

Volunteers Needed: Each Tuesday and Wednesday through March 15th – 1:45pm-8pm
Battle of the Books is a national bowl-style trivia tournament that’s all about books. The competition engages hundreds of young minds every year. Dozens of teams in grades 3-6 compete for the chance to become Battle of the Books champions. Programs like this help DCL achieve its mission of literacy and lifelong learning. Volunteers help with room setup and cleanup. They also guide participants to their seats and man the welcome tables. Once the battle begins, volunteers monitor the entrance and exit of audience members.

Art Program Assistant – Lone Tree

Volunteers Needed: Once a month (third Tuesday of every month) from 4-6 p.m.
Art Stop on the Go is a program where an artist/facilitator from the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art reads to children and then leads them in a literature-based art project. This program meets once a month at the Lone Tree library. Volunteers help set up and tear down the room, check kids in and take attendance, assist the artist/facilitator as needed, and help the kids with their projects.

Teen Reading Buddies – Parker

Spring 2017 Session (summer and fall sessions are also available.)
Dates & Times: Call 303-791-7323 for more info
Teen volunteers (ages 13-18) who love to read are needed to serve as Big Buddies in our Reading Buddies program. Each Big Buddy is paired with a child in first, second or third grade and helps the child become a stronger reader. Teen volunteers spend 1.5 hours a week for eight weeks reading together with their Little Buddies and doing literacy-related activities, such as games and crafts. This is not a tutoring program, but a way for reluctant readers to become more comfortable with reading and have a positive experience in the library. Volunteering for this program is a great way for interested teens to earn community service hours for graduation and acquire real-life experience for job and college applications.

Teen Reading Buddies – Castle Rock

Spring 2017 Session (summer and fall sessions are also available.)
Volunteers Needed: February 21st–April 26th
Mandatory kickoff session is February 21st, 3:30-5 pm; then 4-5:30pm weekly for eight weeks

Camp DCL: Spring Break Camp – Parker

Volunteers Needed: March 20th-24th- 8:45am-12:30pm
DCL is seeking volunteers to assist with the Parker branch’s spring break day camp for elementary school-age children. The camp’s theme is Be a Chef: Cooks & Books, with Sticky Fingers Cooking. Volunteers will assist children with food preparation, execution of cooking, and helping with a craft. Volunteers are encouraged to sign up for multiple days.

Camp DCL: Spring Break Camp – Castle Rock

Volunteers Needed: March 20th-24th – 1:15pm-5pm
DCL is seeking volunteers to assist with the Castle Rock branch’s spring break day camp for elementary school-age children. The camp’s theme is Be a Master Builder: LEGOs, with Bricks 4 Kidz. Volunteers will assist children with their LEGO building projects and help with crafts and putting together snacks. Volunteers are encouraged to sign up for multiple days.

Camp DCL: Spring Break Camp – Lone Tree

Volunteers Needed: March 20th-24th – 8:45am-12:30pm
DCL is seeking volunteers to assist with the Lone Tree branch’s spring break day camp for elementary school-age children. The camp’s theme is Be a Chef: Cooks & Books, with Sticky Fingers Cooking. Volunteers will assist children with food preparation, execution of cooking, and helping with a craft. Volunteers are encouraged to sign up for multiple days.

Grow Youth Center

Grow Youth Center

Community Center & Cafe

Ask any parent what they wish for their kids and you’ll most likely hear answers that include hoping their kids are safe, happy, confident, and empowered to pursue their dreams. The founders of the Grow Youth Center share in those aspirations for our community’s youth. The Grow Youth Center exists to provide a safe and healthy environment for our middle and high school students after school, in order to help develop healthy peer and adult relationships and enrich their lives by helping them “find their awesome.”

Winston Churchill once said, “We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give.”

In order to make the goals of the youth center come to fruition, volunteers who are passionate about making a positive impact with our youth are vital. As the Grow Youth Center attendance increases, so does the need for volunteers. With the primary goal of Grow Youth Center being to inspire and encourage our young people to realize and reach their potential, Grow seeks out community resources and volunteers to mentor and coach kids, in all areas of interest. Whether it’s an aspiring musician needing a more experienced pianist to offer some instruction or maybe a motivated future game designer and programmer who could benefit from a professional in that industry to guide them or anything in between – being able to harness the collective skills and creativity from the rich pool of our community is crucial in providing guidance and mentorship at Grow Youth Center.

Anytime specific needs arise, Grow Youth Center will post them on their volunteer page, growcommunitycenter.org. But why wait? Individuals interested in being part of the Grow community can go online and complete an application to be a volunteer now. Of course, all volunteers must pass Colorado and Federal background checks.

The Grow Youth Center is made possible largely in part to the selflessness and generosity of a handful of Parker residents, the Grow Co-Founders, who love their community so much, they donate 100% of their time and their finances daily to provide free attendance so all youth are able to attend the Grow Youth Center. The dream of the Grow Youth Center is also a reality thanks to the generosity of To The Rescue, with their donation of the youth center facility. Programs, such as the free Grow Youth Center Martial Arts After-School Program, are possible thanks to the partnership with Dragon Hearts Martial Arts, who donate their coaching time and equipment every Tuesday and Thursday.

Financial support is certainly needed as well. Contributions help tackle all kinds of needs; from purchasing mats for yoga classes and sheet music for piano lessons to funding new activities, and future development of a full-service community center and café for people of all ages in Parker. Anyone interested in making a tax deductable donation to support the Grow Community Center can easily do so online at growcommunitycenter.org/give.

Whether you can offer your time, your talents or your financial support to Grow Community Center, the common denominator remains the most important factor. The youth in our community now have a safe place they can come together that fosters the things that truly set them apart and make them unique.

To quote another incredibly creative and talented individual, “The delicate balance of mentoring someone is not creating them in your own image, but giving them the opportunity to create themselves.” — Steven Spielberg

Consider what’s possible when you invest in our most valuable resource, our kids.

Grow Youth Center – 10355 S. Progress Way (in the To The Rescue Building)
Open Monday-Thursday 3:30pm-5:30pm
Activities are constantly being added to the calendar,
check often or sign up for email notifications at online
growcommunitycenter.org

LET’S GET SHAVED

LET’S GET SHAVED

AND BECOME WARRIORS AGAINST KIDS’ CANCER

On Saturday, April 29th 2017 hundreds of people with scruffy heads, full grown beards and various forms of un-ruly hair will meet at the Vehicle Vault car museum in Parker to “get shaved” for the 5th annual Shave the Mayor fundraising event for the St. Baldrick’s Foundation and their fight against pediatric cancer. You too can become a bald warrior fighting against kids’ cancer by signing up to shave your head too!

This year’s event is a special one. Started 5 years ago by the Parker Mayor (and publisher of this magazine) in honor of a friend’s son who had been diagnosed with brain cancer, Shave The Mayor has raised approximately $100,000 in four years to help fight kids’ cancer. After the first year another young local boy, Dalton, was also diagnosed with cancer. Over the next years this event was held in honor of these two fine young men while they fought this terrible disease. Unfortunately, several months ago Dalton passed away from his cancer and we are determined to make this year’s event our biggest one yet…in his honor.

Here is how you can help. Head over to shavethemayor.com and sign up to be a shavee. It’s fun and easy. All you have to do is to set a fundraising goal, raise some money for the fight against cancer, come to our event on April 29th and have your head shaved.

If shaving your head is not your up your alley, then consider making a financial donation to help one of our shavees reach their goal. Every amount helps so please consider donating. At the very least, come watch us get shaved for an incredible cause. Fun and bald heads will abound!

SHAVE THE MAYOR
Saturday, April 29th 2017
The Vehicle Vault Car Museum
Parker Colorado
ShaveTheMayor.com

Hearts Open Wide

Hearts Open Wide

New World Child Placement Agency

Keep them safe. Make sure they know they are loved. Do what you can to be sure their hearts are full and their minds are at ease. Parents try to do everything they can to provide a stable, loving home for their children. Sadly, due to all kinds of unfortunate circumstances, some parents can’t provide these things and children are entered into the foster care system in hopes that someone else will be able to open their home and their hearts to them. It was out of this need that A New World Child Placement Agency was founded in 2012. Doris Gaines, who holds her Masters of Social Work and a Master of Arts in Education, has over thirty years of experience as an educator; working with at-risk youth in her roles as Dean of Students, counselor and social worker. She founded New World to provide the skills necessary to become a productive, contributing member of society to children placed in group homes and foster care. Combining high expectations with love and compassion for children leads to desired outcomes. In this case, every effort is made for the outcome to be the ultimate goal of reunification, if that is a possibility. For others, it may lead to permanent placement from foster care to adoption.

Being a foster parent and opening your hearts and home may mean you have a child in your care for a day or a year. New World wants to ensure all children, no matter their circumstances, are placed with families that will promote their growth and development in order to nurture a child’s self-appreciation and encourage a positive outlook. There is comprehensive pre-placement orientation and training for those with the desire to be a foster parent. New World also provides 24-hour on call support, a case manager to guide families through the process and on-going training. New World places children from infancy to 18 years old in foster homes; 18-21 year olds are placed through court order.

In cases of fostering to adopt, there is a thorough certification process that motivated families or individuals can complete in about 4-6 months with adoptions taking a few weeks to a year to finalize. Through New World’s program, there is no licensing fee, but prospective foster parents do need to get CBI/FBI background check, Background Investigative Unit as well as fingerprinting and CPR/First Aid certification. The first step is completing the application and background check forms. Those are then reviewed by Doris Gaines and then the process gets started! At the end of what can seem like a long tunnel, there is the gift of even more love in your home.

There aren’t many selfless acts of love and compassion more significant than providing a child, often coming from a traumatic situation, with the sense of belonging and stability that comes from a loving, safe, nurturing home.

“Allowing yourself to become vested in the positive improvement of these children’s lives, as well as participating with the professional child welfare team to help serve in the best interest of the child is an awesome task,” says Doris Gaines.

Taking the steps necessary to open your home to a child in need may be something you haven’t given much thought to until now but becoming a foster parent will allow to give love and support to a child that will never be forgotten.

A New World Child Placement Agency is a registered 501(c)(3), non-profit organization – For more information, visit www.anewworldcpa.org or call 303.743.4000

The Bookends

The Life We Bury

By Allen Eskens

Joe has a college assignment to interview a stranger and write a biography. He approaches a local nursing home to see if they have someone that would be interested in telling their story. It is here that he meets Carl Iverson and Joe’s life will never be the same. Carl is a Vietnam veteran that has been convicted of rape and murder. He has spent the last thirty years in prison but has recently been paroled to this center because he is dying from pancreatic cancer. This story will become more than just a grade for Joe.

BECKY Joe is a struggling college student that had a challenging childhood. He never knew his father, his mother is an alcoholic and his brother has special needs. He is juggling school and a job as a bouncer at a local bar. He just wants to complete this English assignment, that he procrastinated starting, and move on. I love this character. He doesn’t wallow in self pity but has accepted his dysfunctional situation. This story starts off quickly. Did you get to know Joe well enough before we meet Carl, the topic of his school assignment?

PAM Although the story moves quickly, the author does a great job of introducing us to Joe. I loved this character from the beginning and had a great sense of his loyalty and integrity. I felt connected to him from the beginning and continued to feel this way throughout the book. Joe decides to search for a subject for his assignment at a local nursing home. Since he has waited so long to begin, he hopes to find someone who will talk to him about their life. He is matched up with Carl, albeit reluctantly, by employees of the center. Carl agrees to talk with Joe and they begin to learn about each other. What were your first impressions about Carl?

BECKY He was a dynamic character that we slowly get to unravel. Originally I thought that this would be a story about a good guy versus a bad guy but there was so much more to this story. We learn a great deal about Carl’s character when the two men first meet. He will only let Joe write his dying declaration after Joe promises to be honest. A thread of honesty will weave throughout this story and reveal much more than what we originally see from both characters. The author has been a criminal defense attorney for 25 years. When I read that fact I thought that this story would have a heavy courtroom drama feel. In reality it’s primarily based on relationships. What did you think about the sweet connection between Joe and his special needs brother, Jeremy?

PAM This relationship helped the reader to see Joe’s true character. Understanding this connection between Jeremy and Joe illustrated the layers of feelings that Joe felt. He wanted to escape a difficult home environment, but feels responsible for his brother’s safety and well being. I was saddened that Joe was forced to choose between his brother and school. But, more importantly, that his mother had no boundaries and didn’t have any respect for Joe or Jeremy. Their deep and loving relationship was contrasted with their relationship with their mother. Did this character bring out similar feelings for you, Becky?

BECKY You don’t want to get me started on that character! She made my blood boil but I love that it was a raw character. She was undiagnosed but clearly struggled with a bipolar disorder and alcoholism. I was angry with the way she treated her two sons and although she had a small role, it had a mighty impact on Joe and the story. What did you think about Joe’s neighbor and love interest, Lila?

PAM I had a hard time deciding if I liked her character at first. She definitely didn’t want anything to do with Joe at first. She also was very judgmental about Carl and the case against him. However, the way she interacted with Jeremy made me reconsider and gave her character much more depth. She turned out to be a very loyal and supportive friend to Joe and Jeremy at a time when they both needed one. Were you surprised by her connection to Jeremy?

BECKY Lila was a guarded person and it was hard to see her softer side, until she started to interact with Jeremy. I wouldn’t say that it surprised me that she came to care for Jeremy, but it definitely helped me to like her character more. What didn’t flow for me in this story is Joe’s relationship with her. I saw them more as friends than involved in an intimate relationship. Once they get heavily involved I felt like the story line took a turn from a human connection story and moved towards an implausible action theme. What did you think about the last part of the book?

PAM The last part of the book was certainly full of action, which was a surprising turn for me. I agree that it transformed the story from the original idea. The author continued to weave the human connection through the story, but it seemed to get lost in the action. Did you feel that the ending wrapped up the story sufficiently?

BECKY The second half of the book was not what I expected but it was an interesting ending. The author pulls all of the story lines together and we are left with a glimpse of the characters future. Next month we will explore Breakthrough by Michael Grumley. This story has something for everyone with a touch of mystery, science fiction, military action, marine biology and even a little romance.

Local Author Spotlight

My Journey Through Chronic Pain

By Peggy Robinson
This is the author’s autobiography of her journey through the chronic pain of fibromyalgia. The book goes beyond focusing on fibromyalgia to all those who suffer chronic pain. The book covers topics that do not appear in other books about pain. The author discusses the issues of grief and loss, levels and stages of pain, changes in relationships, dealing with the voice of pain and coping techniques. There is an appendix that gives insight and support for those who care for the chronically ill.

About the Author
Peggy Robinson has been a counselor for 27 years, a college professor for 13 years, and foster mother of 9. She has recently retired to further her writing career. Her next book with Christmas stories for all ages will be out this fall.

My Journey Through Chronic Pain can be purchased from the author by contacting her at probinson@gmail.com or through Amazon. Books will also be available at Barnes and Noble.

Never The Same

By S. Donovan
Taylor Montgomery is an intelligent, assertive, capable young Chicago police detective. While working on a case, Taylor disappears. She is found two days later, savagely beaten and left for dead. Taylor recovers physically, but emotionally she is devastated. She remembers nothing of what happened though now she is fearful, cautious, weak, unsure of herself. Her life as she knew it is over. She is trapped in the middle of nowhere; a past she can barely remember, a future that holds nothing but agonizing fear. With therapy and the love and support of her friends and family, Taylor slowly begins to trust again. She moves to Arizona to get a fresh start and meets a woman whose spiritual teachings help Taylor begin to accept what happened in her life and to realize she has the choice to move forward or stay mired in the past. This is the story of a young woman’s awakening to the belief that we are the creators of our lives and only we can choose how we want that life to be.

About the Author
Sally Donovan lives in Chandler, Arizona with her husband, two daughters, five cats, three dogs, horses, chickens and their cow named Dinner. She began consciously walking her spiritual path many years ago and plans to open a metaphysical bookstore within the next year.

For more information or to order additional copies of this book, call 602-697-6291.
Sally Donovan 1101 Auburn Dr. #2306 Castle Rock, CO. 80109