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Pat Sunderland
DCI News Editor
Pat Sunderland

Recent Articles

City invites input on parks, recreation priorities

Montrose has a kayak park. Palisade is working on the "plunge." The City of Delta doesn't want to copy those ideas, but is looking for unique features to enhance its parks, open space and trails.

"We only have so many dollars and a small staff," said Wilma Erven, director of parks, recreation and golf for the City of Delta.

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Delta's urban renewal: 'There is no Plan B'

The clock is ticking. The Delta Urban Renewal Authority (DURA) has 120 days to reach agreement with the taxing entities it's asking to help fund a gateway project near the intersection of Highways 50 and 92. Half that time has elapsed, and there is no Plan B, city manager David Torgler emphasized during a meeting with taxing entities Monday.

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Legislation provides one-time funding boost for rural schools

Senate Bill 267, titled "Rural Sustainability," not only converted the hospital provider fee to an enterprise fund, it also directed funds to rural schools. A one-time allocation of $30 million will be spread across the state, bumping per-pupil funding for Delta County students by $171.70. That amounts to about $819,000.

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Judge rejects plea deal for Shawn Willshire

Although he does not generally reject plea agreements, District Court Judge Steven Schultz did just that last week when he refused to accept a plea of guilty to trespassing entered by Shawn Willshire. Instead, Willshire will stand trial for felony stalking.

Judge Schultz made the unusual decision after listening to a lengthy statement from the victim, who said she could not agree to dismissal of the stalking charge, or to the stipulation to two years in prison.

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DCMH seeks enterprise zone status to improve patient access

The Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT) offers an enterprise zone designation to support local economic improvements that result in job creation/retention. Colorado taxpayers may earn a 25 percent state income tax credit by contributing to targeted efforts.

As a qualifying nonprofit, Delta County Memorial Hospital is pursuing the enterprise zone designation for projects to improve patient access.

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Morris Optical celebrates 25th

Morris Optical celebrates 25th

Monica Morris-Whelan and Chanda Morris-Jones are carrying on a family tradition that began 65 years ago, when Dr. Thayer Morris and his wife Gerri moved to Colorado and Dr. Thayer began his career as an independent career of optometry.

He first worked with Dr. James Bush in Grand Junction, then established his own practice in Delta in August 1952.

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Delta City Council denies de-annexation of remote parcel

On a split vote, Delta City Council approved a disconnection from the city late last year. With a similar request before them June 6 -- and fearing even more applications -- members unanimously denied a de-annexation request from a neighboring property owner.

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City broadband nears completion

As middle-mile broadband installation in the City of Delta nears completion, the Delta City Council has finalized a number of service agreements/fiber exchanges with Region 10, DMEA and Elevate Fiber.

According to Glen Black, community development director, equipment installation and testing of fiber to the carrier neutral location should be finished by the end of the month.

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Cedaredge man dies in auto accident

Kent Brakken, 71, died as the result of a traffic accident on Interestate 80 west of Ogallala, Neb., June 8.

The North Platte Telegraph reports the crash occurred just after 8:30 p.m. when an eastbound Toyota Tacoma pickup crossed the median and collided head-on with a westbound Dodge pickup.

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Round 2 of state economic initiative draws local interest

The City of Delta is lending support to Delta County Economic Development in two efforts to support local business development and entrepreneurship.

DCED is following up on last year's Blueprint 2.0 success and has submitted an application for a Co-working 101 Initiative offered through the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT).

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Artistry in glass

Artistry in glass

After traveling to the Western Slope regularly to fish at Crawford Reservoir, Dee Brown and her husband Joe decided Delta County would be a great place to retire.

Although the move became a reality 10 years ago, Dee has yet to kick back and relax.

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Curmudgeon and the Crone

Curmudgeon and the Crone

A curmudgeon is defined as a crusty, ill-tempered, and usually old man. Although retired, Rick Smith is not elderly, nor does he seem to be ill-tempered.

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Teachers, principals get high marks

Performance reports for Colorado teachers and principals released to the public for the first time show the majority of educators in Delta County received evaluation ratings of "effective" or higher.

A total of 88 percent of Colorado teachers and 98 percent in Delta County -- received an overall rating of "effective" or "highly effective" according to the metrics released by the Colorado Department of Education.

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Procrastinators weigh their options at college, job fair

Procrastinators weigh their options at college, job fair

Graduation is just three months away, but some Delta High School seniors are still undecided about post-graduation plans. To provide direction, DHS hosted a "Procrastinator's Fair" that featured six four-year and vocational colleges, as well as the opportunity to explore careers in the military, mechanics, health, emergency services, engineering, construction trades and more.

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Inspired by natural materials

Inspired by natural materials

Sylvia Karner has been cutting, coloring and styling hair in Delta since the mid 1970s -- nearly as long as she's been making jewelry. While beadwork has become increasingly popular in recent years, it's a hobby that has fascinated Sylvia for some time.

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Performing pooches

Performing pooches

Teaching a dog to obey simple commands like "Sit," "Heel" and "Come!" takes dedication and commitment.

But once your dog has the basics down, you might be tempted to teach him a few tricks, like rolling over or playing dead.

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Ringing in the New Year

Ringing in the New Year

In the closing days of 1999, fears of Y2K mounted. Doomsayers warned that when the date turned from Dec. 31, 1999, to Jan. 1, 2000, a programming bug would shut down computers across the globe.

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Actions speak louder than words

Actions speak louder than words

Middle school can have a profound impact on young lives. As a teacher at Delta Middle School, Bret Hamilton has not only seen how adolescent lives are shaped by their experiences in and out of the classroom, he also recognizes the impact middle school had on his own life.

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Crazy for Corvettes

Crazy for Corvettes

Not long after the first Chevrolet Corvette rolled off the production line in 1953, one of the original models was totaled in a single-car accident near Ron Austin's childhood home in Redding, Calif. The accident drew a crowd of curious neighbors, none of whom knew what a Corvette was at the time.

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A touch of elegance

A touch of elegance

Nancy Giordano is one of those crafty individuals who never runs out of ideas for beautiful, unique items, whether she's turning a pair of old blue jeans into an apron or stitching a colorful piece of fabric into an "on the go" purse.

She paints rocks, embellishes clothing with beads and creates magnets, but finds the most joy in jewelry making.

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Forged in steel

Forged in steel

A lover of history, John York volunteers at Fort Uncompahgre once a week. As a docent, he shares the history of the original fort, which was built by Antoine Robidoux in 1828. The Indians and trappers brought furs to trade for sugar, coffee, beads and other goods brought in from the United States and Mexico.

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In a class by herself

In a class by herself

Sheryl Williams has taught hundreds of students the art of painting with alcohol ink, but only one has actually stepped foot in her Delta studio. The remainder are online students who follow Sheryl's instructional videos via the internet.

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Quilts as art

Quilts as art

Every quilt is one-of-a-kind, snippets of colors and pattern layered together to create stunning table runners, wall hangings and bed covers. The process often begins with a pattern or even a kit, with precut fabric swatches in complementary colors.

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Don Benjamin: Author, cartoonist, teacher

Don Benjamin: Author, cartoonist, teacher

Cartooning may not be a good way to make a living, but it can certainly keep you entertained. Pencil in hand, you surround yourself with superheroes, whimsical animals and humorous characters who pepper your drawings with witty comments.

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Pine needle artistry

Pine needle artistry

A craft show on HGTV inspired Ruth Ann Hake to try her hand at pine needle basketry.

"I was just fascinated," Ruth Ann said, "so I bought a couple of books and that's really been my only instruction."

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Cake Wars Winner!

Cake Wars Winner!

V ictory is sweet for Melissa Zunich, the winner of Food Network Channel's Cake Wars.

Zunich, the owner of Sweet Cheeks Cakery in Delta, teamed up with a cousin to design an entry that won the judges over with its impressive details and "wonderful" hand painting.

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A wonder to behold

A wonder to behold

An entire room is dedicated to Lois Helgeland's incredible Victorian village, but that's just the beginning ... there are delightful discoveries to be found throughout her house at Christmastime.

To say Christmas is Lois' favorite holiday is clearly an understatement.

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Reaching new heights with the Civil Air Patrol

Reaching new heights with the Civil Air Patrol

Civil Air Patrol, the official auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force, performs about 85 percent of inland search and rescue missions in the U.S. The squadrons search for lost hikers or hunters, locate downed aircraft and transport emergency personnel or medical materials.

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Providing inspiration through liturgical art

Providing inspiration through liturgical art

Like the Shakers, Tim and Lyn Hinz express their faith through their craftsmanship. The Shakers believed that the excellence of their work was a form of worship; their furniture and crafts came to be known as "religion in wood."

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The Binky Patrol: Hugs from the heart

The Binky Patrol:    Hugs from the heart

Hugs for kids. That's how Connie Harris and Terri Brubaker describe the blankets they make through the Binky Patrol, a nationwide effort to reach out to needy kids with a comforting handmade blanket, or "binky."

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Artistic expressions

Artistic expressions

Sandra Williamson is a talented artist who expresses her creativity in a variety of ways, but none is more unique than her vinegar painted furniture and accessories.

The technique dates to the Industrial Revolution, she explains.

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