The Estes Valley is fortunate to have an excellent Library, one that is gearing up for two very popular sales. The Friends of the Library will put on the annual Used Book Sale at the Estes Park Conference Center on Aug. 5, 6 and 7. Then they regroup for their Holiday Book Sale at the Estes Valley Library, December 2nd and 3rd.
The all-volunteer Friends of the Library raises the majority of its money from the two annual used book sales. Both sales take hundreds of volunteer hours to sort, table, transport, display and sell thousands of titles. But the hard work pays off to the benefit of the library and its patrons. Last year the summer sale earned $27,900 while the holiday sale topped $5,690, a new record. Continue reading
Visitors to Estes Park this time of year receive a special treat. Throughout all of spring and early summer look for mountain goat kids and big horn sheep lambs clinging to rocky cliffs and elk cows grazing with their calves in the meadows. Near the creeks and rivers of the Estes Valley you might see black bear cubs, mountain lion kittens and coyote pups. Now is the time to visit and appreciate the beauty of new life in the wild. Continue reading
For the first time it is now possible to adopt your duck online for the May 7th 23rd Annual Estes Park Duck Race. Now duck race supporters have two ways to adopt a duck. You can obtain adoption forms from the charitable organizations in Estes Park, the Visitor Center, and many other places around town. Or you can go to a new online order form. Don Widrig, rep for the Rotary Club of Estes Park who puts on the race explains, “This is all a bit experimental for us. We have no idea if this will boost duck adoptions or not, but we do know it will be a lot more convenient for several of the participating organizations, such as Eagle Rock School, which relies heavily on parents, friends and family scattered all over the country. Now, all you have to do is tell someone to adopt their ducks online at EPduckrace.org.”
A study of visitation for the months of July, August and September showed more than half of the day visitors to the Estes Park Valley came for the first time, and 42% of the overnight visitors were also first timers. Included in the study are spending trends, the demographics of the visitors, and a rating of their overall experience satisfaction.
The results were compiled from online surveys completed by nearly 3,300 visitors. The surveys show 38% of respondents possessed a college degree and another 38% a Master’s or Doctorate degree.
Visitors to Estes Park sometimes complain of the poor roads around the village. Due to the high volume of traffic the roads receive, with over 3 million visitors annually, they deteriorate much quicker than in other places. Challenging weather conditions also contribute to the problems faced by town roads.
The Department of Public Works for the Town of Estes Park recently completed an inventory of road conditions for 58 miles of roadway owned by the town, and found that improvements needed to be made on approximately half of them.
Town Administrator Jacquie Halburnt says the town will “consider every option to fund roadway maintenance for our citizens and visitors.”
In related news, the highest paved road in the Continental United States at 12,183′ elevation, trail Ridge Road, is now closed for the season.
Orlando’s Steakhouse opened its doors in 1972 upstairs from the world famous Wheel Bar, which has been serving patrons since 1945. Locals and visitors enjoyed the delectable food and friendly service for years. In 1981 Chef Tandy Brown signed on and remained for the next 12 years, alongside Cathy Crowley, the former owner of Lonigan’s, who ran the wait staff superbly for 16 years.
But recently the doors have been shut up tight as the major players felt they needed a break. It’s not easy keeping the quality and reliability at peak standards year after year, decade after decade, so the break was healthy for all involved. During the hiatus Chef Brown took on the position of head chef at Dunraven’s and Crowley moved on to Nicky’s.
Estes Park shares the downtown area with an abundant wildlife population. It is very common to see various animals roaming around the village streets alongside out-of-town visitors. The most common wildlife you’ll see downtown is elk. But you also might see beavers, bears, mountain lions, coyotes, mule deer, fox, raccoons, big horn sheep, an occasional lost moose or two. At the Silver Moon Inn elk enjoy grazing next to the river as much as the guests enjoy relaxing there. This shot of a beaver working on an aspen tree was taken on the Silver Moon grounds. Continue reading
Sometimes visitors who normally live at lower altitudes experience altitude sickness or acute mountain sickness (AMS). The symptoms of high altitude sickness sometime resemble the flu or a hangover and often manifest themselves six to ten hours after ascent and generally subside in one to two days.
The higher you climb above sea level, the less oxygen there is in the air. This can cause a problem with some folks whose bodies aren’t used to working on so little oxygen. If you stay at a high altitude for a week or more, your body gets used to the lower levels and functions properly.
The same cliffs that attract rock climbers to Rocky Mountain National Park are home to a diverse assembly of raptors, or birds of prey. Trails popular with the rock climbing community along Sheep Mountain and Lumpy Ridge are temporarily closed as of March 1 to insure protection of the raptors breeding and nesting there. Continue reading
The Foundation for Character Development has named Eagle Rock School of Estes Park the 2010 Colorado State School of Character. Sponsored nationally by the Character Education Partnership (CEP), the State Schools of Character (SSOC) Awards event will be held at the Supreme Court Chambers, in the Colorado State Capitol in Denver this summer, followed by representation at the 17th annual National Forum on Character Education in San Francisco, CA in October. Continue reading