2015 Douglas County Fair & Rodeo

dcfairWhere can you see a stick horse rodeo, get expert advice about your tomatoes, eat breakfast for free, visit goats and rabbits, ride carnival rides, see Xtreme Bull Riding and attend an old-fashioned barn dance? The Douglas County Fair and Rodeo!

Since 1918, this family-friendly event has been a major community gathering place and is now considered the fastest growing fair in Colorado. In 2014, Douglas County Fair and Rodeo was honored to be selected by the Pro Rodeo Cowboys Association contestants of the Mountain States Circuit as “Most Improved Rodeo.”

This year kids can be farmers for a day at Discovery Ranch where, through interactive activities and exhibits, they learn where potatoes, apples, and more come from. They’ll go on a food scavenger hunt designed to help them understand agriculture and end by making delicious crepes with the ingredients they find. In the farm yard area, kids will learn about and interact with farm animals.

The fun doesn’t stop there. Little buckaroos can join in on the stick horse rodeo, become Cricketers at the cricket races, and participate in their own rodeo at Mutton Bustin’. Of course there’s always the parade on Saturday morning, goat-milking demonstrations, numerous 4-H exhibits, and classic carnival rides and games.

Adults love the fair too. Where else can you drive a tractor blindfolded, enjoy a pie-eating contest, marvel at the skill of teamsters guiding draft horses through an agility course, eat deep-fried carnival concoctions, and see one of Colorado’s top ten rodeos as rated by Real American Cowboy magazine?

If you love rodeo, you’re in for a treat. Medved Autoplex and the Douglas County Fair Board are presenting a wild and exciting rodeo that features contestants from the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association. You’ll see barrel racing, bareback riding, steer wrestling, saddle bronc riding, tie-down roping, team roping and everyone’s favorite, bull riding.

Douglas County Fair and Rodeo is especially excited to host the fastest growing equestrian sport in the nation, the Cowboy Mounted Shoot. Mounted contestants compete in this fast action timed event using two .45 caliber single action revolvers each loaded with five rounds of specially prepared blank ammunition. There are a variety of levels of competition for everyone, ranging from novice levels to the seasoned professional.

If you enjoy live entertainment, Douglas County Fair and Rodeo is the place to be Friday and Saturday nights. On Friday night, local Parker band Trail, known for fun danceable county music, will play on the midway bandstand. The party continues with an old-fashioned barn dance on Saturday night featuring Denver’s Dustin Devine & the Real Deal, playing Honky Tonk and traditional country tunes.

Festivities start Thursday, August 6 at 4:00 pm and run through Sunday, August 9 at 6:00 pm.
It’s easier than ever to get tickets: buy online, buy early at the box office, or buy at the gate.

Visit DouglasCountyFairAndRodeo.com to get all the details you need and to purchase tickets.

Reuter-Hess Reservoir

reuter-hessParker Water and Sanitation District (PWSD), established in 1962, provides water and waste water services for the Town of Parker and portions of unincorporated Douglas County, Colorado. In the near future, PWSD will also serve parts of Lone Tree and Castle Pines. Currently, the primary water source for our community is Denver Basin groundwater, which is a non-renewable water source that is depleting throughout Colorado. PWSD is investing in regional, long term water supply projects to provide a secure water future for our customers. Projects, such as the Rueter-Hess Reservoir and our highly efficient reclaimed water system, will help ensure we have enough water resources to support our families now and in the future. They will also help maintain and enhance property values and our quality of life.

Rueter–Hess Reservoir is a significant water management project for the ParkerWater and Sanitation District (PWSD). The Reservoir was completed in 2012. When filled, the reservoir will have a capacity of 75,000 acre feet (AF) of water and encompass 1,170 acres.
The District currently serves approximately 50,000 residents, with an estimated build out population of 122,000. Rueter–Hess Reservoir is an off-stream reservoir, which will store renewable water from various sources including nearby Cherry Creek (surface water & alluvial well water), Newlin Gulch and reclaimed water from PWSD.

Additional long term water supplies are being evaluated by PWSD and the findings will be included as part of a larger, regional water master plan led by the South Metro Water Supply Authority. In addition, 10,700 AF of storage space is owned by several partner communities – Castle Rock (8,000 AF) Castle Pines North (1,500 AF) and Stonegate (1,200 AF) who will be importing their own water supplies.

The reservoir is planned to minimize draws of non-renewable Denver Basin Aquifers, by collecting and storing renewable water when available to help the District meet peak summer demands and bridge future droughts.

Where there is a body of water in the State of Colorado, people will come! Rueter-Hess Reservoir was completed in 2012 as a drinking water storage vessel for the District and multiple partners. When filled, the reservoir will have a capacity of 75,000 acre feet (AF) of water and encompass 1,170 acres. Water quality is the Board of Director’s number one goal.

The District is in the initial phase of organizing a collaborative partnership with the ending goal being that of creating a recreational destination at the reservoir. As milestones are reached, press releases will be sent out and updates provided at www.pwsd.org. This spring, a fish stocking program was initiated…it’s only the beginning of a long term program that will grow far into the future.

At a 2015 Board meeting, PWSD Directors expressed their support of a recreation program at the Reservoir. They envision a “tranquil and serene” environment to support the natural beauty of the site, as well as preserving the wildlife.

FIKA on the Hill

fikaf’i:ka : vb (swe) :
to meet over coffee

So many things are great about Parker. A favorite characteristic of our home town is the great locally owned, unique, businesses. It feels special when you find a place where the owners actually want you there, not just your money…a place where you feel comfortable bringing a friend and enjoying life. One such gem in Parker is FIKA Coffee House.

Many people in Parker know FIKA Coffee House on mainstreet, its great “vibe” in a historic building and how it buzzes with downtown activity. Well, did you know that FIKA has now expanded into a second location? That’s right, and the new “FIKA on the hill” exudes Parker charm, a friendly atmosphere and some of the best drinks around.

Located in Idyllwilde next to the community rec center and west of Legend High School, FIKA on the hill is a perfect spot to grab your favorite drink while enjoying the company of a good friend…or meeting a new one. The views are stunning, the ambiance incredible and the smiles plentiful.

Owned by Idyllwilde residents, Anna and Josh Rivero, FIKA on the hill is truly one of those rare and special locally owned businesses that make communities like Parker one of a kind. So next time you are out and about stop by for a FIKA…who knows, you may discover a new drink, friend or conversation that will reinforce what you love about Parker and our community!

For more information about FIKA Coffee House, visit their website at fikacoffeehouse.com

Saddle Up! and Pack Your Bags

saddle-upThis summer, the SaddleUp! Foundation’s popular fundraiser will arrive with a chance to fly away to a resort destination via private jet on the night of the event. SaddleUp! Foundation is a premier Colorado-based equine assisted therapy facility that provides a wide breadth of therapy programs for individuals with special needs, as well as their able-bodied family members.

Presented by title sponsor Tempus Aircraft and will take place at the AeroColorado, in its beautiful 40,000 square foot private hangar. This year’s Gala Honorary Hosts are Jennifer and Adam Daurio. Matt and Melissa Sommer are the Chairs of the Event.

The annual party is the SaddleUp! Foundation’s signature event and annual fundraiser, where guests vie to win seats on a private jet that departs directly from the party and heads to a resort destination in California’s wine country. Guests are directed to bring a packed suitcase to the soiree, just in case they are the lucky winners of the grand prize getaway. There are two ways to win this adventure for four: through the purchase of a Baggage Claim raffle ticket or as the highest bidder during the live auction. The trip includes limousine service, spa treatments, private tours, wine tastings and more.
During the live auction, bidders will also have the opportunity to win several fabulous destination packages. Be sure to keep checking the SaddleUp! Foundation website www.saddleupfoundation.org as they will be announcing destination packages up until the event.

The SaddleUp! Suitcase Party will feature fabulous food from more than ten local restaurants and caterers, libations from Hall Brewing and Gallo, live music, special performances and dancing.

Local Author Spotlight

LASLove on the Lido Deck by Barbara Oliverio

Sharp-witted, always-organized Keira Graham has traded in her high tech career as a systems analyst for the whirlwind world of event planning. As she builds up her fledging business, she learns that her widowed mother has news of her own – she has a serious gentleman caller! Is Keira ready for mom’s new romance?

When she gets a game-changing opportunity to organize a major event on a luxury Caribbean cruise, Keira turns to her best pal Alexandria to help recruit famous chefs who will offer classes for foodies looking for fun in the sun as they gain cooking know-how. The cruise becomes a rollicking adventure for Keira, her sassy assistant Juliet, the entire D’Agostino clan, Keira’s mother and other surprise guests. And has Keira meet her match in charismatic Cruise Director Brennan McCallister, who could have something more than keeping everything shipshape on his mind?

Filled with wit, charm, and a few recipes along the way, Love on the Lido Deck brings characters to life with laugh-out-loud situations, crisp dialog and sweet romance on the high seas. BONUS: INCLUDES RECIPES FEATURED IN THE BOOK!

Love on the Lido Deck is available to order online at scolapastapress.com

The Bookends

BOOKENDSWhen I Found You by Catherine Ryan Hyde

Nathan McCann and his dog are duck hunting one early morning before dawn.  His dog alerts him to something that is not right in the dark woods.  He finds an abandoned baby wrapped in a sweater and wearing a tiny knit hat.  Deep down he knows that he will always be connected to this unwanted child. He rushes the little boy to the hospital and realizes he wants to adopt him.  The little boy’s grandmother steps in and decides to raise him.  Nathan asks the woman to allow them to meet sometime in the future. She promises to make the connection at some point in the future. Nathan has the chance when, years later, she drops off an angry and defiant teenager on his doorstep. Nathan agrees to care for this boy he found years ago in the woods and proves he will never let him go.

PAM: Becky, this book sounded so interesting and unique! I was captured from the very beginning, as Nathan finds a little baby in the woods. Were you pulled into the story right away, as well?

BECKY: The story starts quickly and I did enjoy this book from the first chapter. It was unique, and enjoyable to follow two male characters. Did you find it interesting that this author has such unlikable female characters? I had to double check that it was written by a woman.

PAM: I hadn’t realized it, but that is a great point. Although, later in the book there is a female character that I loved. Nathan was such a man who was so willing to give of himself for no reward. Were you encouraged by his character?

BECKY: He was totally committed to baby Nat from the moment he laid eyes on him. It was heartwarming how he sent birthday and Christmas gifts to Nat even when there was no love returned to him. The commitment deepens when the rebellious teen comes to live with him. It is only a matter of time before Nat gets himself into serious trouble. Do you think that Nathan, who has never parented a child before, makes good decisions when Nat gets himself into trouble?

PAM: Nathan let his love for Nat guide him during the difficult times. This let Nat know that Nathan would never abandon him. It took him some time to fully realize and appreciate what Nathan did for him. However, Nathan continued to support this young man, even when it was unappreciated. I loved this about Nathan’s character! I think Nathan made decisions that were appropriate in a challenging situation. What do you think drove Nat’s behavior?

BECKY: Nat had a difficult childhood. His mother left him to die, his father is not in the picture and the grandmother is more serious than loving. This simple story provides an opening to discuss that old question, is it nature or nurture that forms our lives? Do you think that Nat would have been different if Nathan could have been a part of his life while he was maturing or was his bumpy path inevitable?

PAM: I think Nat felt the need to push the boundaries and would have probably done so regardless. However, he was fortunate that Nathan was there for him and so giving of himself. Even with Nathan’s unconditional love and acceptance, it took Nat quite some time to accept it and make better choices. Nat met another person that was a consistent positive force in his life. Do you think he tried to be a better person after meeting Little Manny?

BECKY: Thanks to a gift from Nathan, Nat developed an interest in boxing. He wasn’t great at the sport but he worked hard and wanted to have a professional career. When he was a teen he met Little Manny at a local boxing ring and he became a coach and mentor to Nat. I think that the physical workout was good for Nat’s state of mind and he wanted to please Manny so it was as good as therapy for Nat. Manny was a good hearted man and brought out the best in Nat. There is one last person that had a positive impact on this young man’s life and that was his girlfriend, Carol. Did you like this character?

PAM: I loved Carol. She was so kind and loyal to Nat, as well as Nathan. Her character was important during the rest of the story for both men. She certainly encouraged Nat to be the best husband he could be. Although he struggled to learn what it took to be a good husband, he eventually discovered this for him and Carol. This story took us through many ups and downs, while allowing us to see some amazing characters and their unwavering loyalty. Nathan and Carol, specifically, warmed my heart with their caring and the way they handled difficult situations. While it is sad to say goodbye to these characters, I’m excited to meet our next cast. Who will it be, Becky?

BECKY: All aboard…I feel like I’m the last one to read this story. Next month we will discuss The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins.