Saguache News – July 22

 Could You Pass Driving Test in Saguache Today?

“The Colorado Driver Handbook”trooper-gary-cutler-column

When new drivers are taught how to drive, they are given a book to study entitled the Colorado Driver Handbook which contains the driving laws in Colorado.  This 38 pages of golden rules of the roadway is essential for new drivers on how to drive safely.  Over the years, I believe sometimes drivers forget some of the topics in that book.  Now, I understand some of the content is tried and true laws that have been around for decades, but there are new laws that have come to pass since some of us went through driver’s training.

I suggest the next time you get a chance, pick up a copy or look it up online and read what it has to say.  Many people in professional fields continue to read manuals throughout their entire career to make sure they are up to date on the latest topics, or maybe it’s just a refresher on old topics; no matter what the reason, it’s important for them to keep up to date on updated information.  I believe this should be the same for the driving public.  Let’s look at some of the content of the handbook.

On the first page after the cover, is a message from the Governor that I feel has importance.  He writes, “As part of the state’s continuing commitment to safety on the roads and responsible driver education, I am proud to present the Colorado Driver Handbook.”Drivers-handbook-Colorado.jpg


I truly believe it shouldn’t just be the state’s commitment to safety on the roads, but every driver in Colorado. Making sure you and all other drivers know the particulars to each law is paramount to a safe driving experience.

The handbook covers a multitude of topics including information on driver’s licenses.  So, if you have a new up an coming driver in the family, the book has all the details for getting your new driver properly licensed, as well as letting you know at what age they have to be to get a learner’s permit.

The online copy also has blank forms you can print for drive time logs and an Affidavit of Liability and Guardianship.  Some of the other topics covered in the handbook are DUI’s, seatbelt usage, roundabouts, right-of-way, and bicycle laws just to name just a few.

Now I will eventually hit all of the topics in the handbook, but if you’re impatient, such as me, then you’ll want to take a look at this as soon as possible.

As always, safe travels! – CSP Trooper Gary Cutler

Could You Pass Today’s Driver’s Test?

See if you can answer the following questions correctly! (CLICK image for answers!)Drivers-Test


Saguache News – July 20

“Trails, Trappers, and Traders”  on Saturday

If you’re looking for something interesting to do this weekend, a special historical program is being held at the Rio Grande County Museum on Saturday, July 21, beginning at 8:30 a.m. in conjunction with the La Verada del Norte Chapter of the Old Spanish Trail Association.slv museum

The program coincides with the opening of the “Trails, Trappers, and Traders” exhibit. Informative short presentations will be made on the early pioneers travelers, and trails of the area by Louise Colville; a brief history of the Old Spanish Trail by Doug Knutson, followed by an overview of the geology of the San Luis Valley, the volcanic history and features of the San Juan Mts. and the Summer Coon Volcanic center due north of Del Norte by Steve Nicolais, retired geologist.

Following the presentations, a half day geologic road tour/field trip led by Steve Nicolais, is offered to those interested in seeing the remnants of the deeply eroded Summer Coon Volcanic center, an 8 to 10-mile diameter volcanic complex, just six miles north of Del Norte. Space is limited to 10-12 cars. Carpooling has worked well in past. A Donation of $10 is requested which will be split between the Museum and the La Verada del Norte Chapter of the Old Spanish Trail.  Call museum @ 719- 657-2847 early to reserve a spot on the tour.  There are no limitations on the museum exhibit and talks.

Check the Museum’s Facebook page for more details on the field trip.

Saguache News – July 9

Art Lovers: Catch the “Last Train” Before It’s Gone

Ramblin Roy

Ramblin’ Roy Smith has been a local on Saguache’s arts scene for years, pictured here (far left) at last summer’s Saguache Arts Festival. Photo: Saguache Today/Kathy Bedell.

As the summer season ramps up into high gear, so does the valley’s art world, showing off its fines at various shows and galleries. And last Saturday, July 7, art-lovers got a special treat with the opening of Ramblin Roy’s Last Train for Freedom Leavin Town.

For readers unfamiliar with his work, Ramblin Roy is a long time cowboy, blues musician, civil rights activist, film actor, public speaker, antiques dealer and self-described hobo. He has traveled the world sharing his stories and art, making his home right here in Saguache most recently he could be seen downtown shares his tales with friends and visitors.

Ramblin Roy Smith

Ramblin’ Roy Smith has been a local on Saguache’s arts scene for years.

In fact readers, may recall his recent tragedy when his traveling home caught fire out at KV Estates. If you missed it, READ STORY HERE. Fortunately, his Saguache neighbors helped him secure a new vehicle and the necessities to get his life back on track. 

And what better way to express his gratitue than sharing some of his wonderful creations. Roy’s Last Train for Freedom Leavin’ Town exhibit will feature his sculptures, selections from his archive and photographs of Fort Roy at Royville. A book will be released to accompany the exhibit.

So make plans to come and see the show featured at The Range, in downtown Saguache. But don’t wait too long as this train will leave the station on August 4. Be sure to ring the bell for admittance or call 646-734-1373 to see the exhibition.

The Range Hosting is described as an artist space for exhibitions, events, and visiting artists. It was established in 2015 by  Alex DeCarli & Adrienne Garbini. The Range is located at 307 4th Street and visitors are encouraged to ring the bell or by set an appointment.

Call for Artists/Crafters for Art Festival

The 9th Annual Saguache Art Festival will be held this year on Saturday, Aug. 18. Local artists and crafters are invited to display, sell, or demonstrate their own work. In past years friends, neighbors and visitors have enjoyed a day of new, unusual and beautiful art and crafts displayed throughout Downtown Saguache.

Art Festival 2017_Saguache Today_11

Teri Rills stands beside the stump-carved sculpture outside her studio in Saguache during last year’s annual Saguache Art Festival held August 19.

A variety of venues are available or you may bring your own set up. If you are interested in joining this year’s event, please contact Kelsey Hauck at 719-655-2670 by July 31 to join local artists in this year’s Saguache Art Festival. There is no charge for participating.

Smith Market Gallery Closes Doors

The Smith Market Gallery is sad to announce that Byron Williams is closing his doors and relocating for health reasons. Shoppers should make sure that they have one of Williams one-of-a-kind gourds in their collection. And at a 20% off, everything-must-go-sale, the stock won’t last long.

Williams has been a main-stay on the Saguache art scene, creating incredible works of art from gourds, big and small. He has also been an intricate part of the Saguache community, serving in many capacities, including his long, dedicated service to the Saguache Chamber of Commerce.

In case you missed it, here’s his story from last year’s Meet The Artist on Saguache Today. You’ll be missed, but never forgotten, Byron!

Meet The Artist

Saguache’s Byron Williams Creates Gourd-eous Art!

Saguache artist and owner of the Smith Market Gallery, Byron Williams has a gourd-eous way of expressing his creative side.

Byron Williams Saguache

Local artist Byron Williams will be featured at this Saturday’s Saguache Art Festival. Photo: Smith Market Gallery

Williams has made baskets out of many materials, most frequently basket reed which is a standard basket making material.  He has used grapevine, honeysuckle, tulip popular bark, Siberian Elm bark as well as rawhide, wool rovings and yard, paper and fabric.  His talents are shown in a wide variety of baskets from traditional to the uniquely creative freeform styles.

Byron runs the Smith Market Gallery at the corner of 5th and Denver in Saguache and will be one of the featured artist during the 8th Annual Saguache Art Festival this Saturday, August 19.  Williams’s exhibit will have examples of his work, going back 40 years including baskets and gourds of many patterns and styles.

IMG_0025Gourds are used for making everything from baskets looking like sculptures to masks and are part of his large collection of art. The art work is accomplished with the use of design itself to the unique painting the color with various dyes and wood varnish, antlers, carving, wood burning and other embellishments.  He states that he likes to clean each of the gourds so he “becomes familiar with each one.”  Each piece is a one of a kind; just like the artist!

Saguache News – July 7

Fruit Tree Pruning Workshop on July 17

The Colorado State Forest Service Alamosa Field Office is partnering with the Crestone Tree Board to offer a fruit tree pruning workshop this summer. The workshop will be from 9:00 a.m.-2:30 p.m. on Tuesday, July 17, at the Baca Property Owners Association meeting hall.  The morning session will be held inside and cover the science of pruning.  The afternoon will involve pruning trees outdoors in Crestone.Fruit Pruning Workshop Flyer 2018.jpg

Pruning and timing for fruit trees is different than for other trees in the landscape. Using good care and pruning techniques can help improve the potential for high quality and quantity of fruit. Fruit tree pruning is often neglected due to a lack of knowledge or fear that it can injure a tree. Fruit trees may be pruned for either aesthetics and for maximizing fruit production.

“People often think that pruning a fruit tree for produce is more of an art than a science. This is not true. Similar to pruning other trees, there is science behind the proper techniques to minimize damage to the tree and maximize fruit production,” said Vince Urbina, community forester with the Colorado State Forest Service. “A properly pruned fruit tree is more productive, healthy and aesthetically pleasing.”

Topics to be addressed at the workshop include:

  • Training young trees to grow properly.
  • Pruning older trees.
  • Yearly pruning practices.
  • Different techniques for different trees.
  • Selection of fruit trees.

The workshop will cost $15, which includes lunch. Participants can register by calling the CSFS Alamosa Field Office at 719-587-0915.

Saguache Trees

A fruit tree pruning workshop will be from 9 a.m.-2:30 p.m. on Tuesday, July 17, at the Baca Property Owners Association meeting hall.


Saguache News – July 5

Howl The Blues at Cow Town on Saturday

If the dog days of summer have set in for anyone living in Saguache Today (and beyond!), then the Old Cow Town Resort may be just the kind of place you want to be this Saturday night, July 7. Come and join the fun at the 1st Annual Howlin’ Blues Festival.

The musical line-up looks solid with some great Blues with CB Jazz, Mo’ Champipple & the Meso Horns, The RoadRunners, Blue Recluse & Mojo Mama! Blues from noon to midnight!

Gates open at 11 a.m. on Saturday. This is a family friendly event – kids under 12 are free! Bring your blanket, lawn chairs, friends, & family. Entry gate pricing is two adults for $75.00 or one for $40.00. There is also on-site camping available.

Old Cow Town is located at 36710 County Road CC36 west of Saguache. They may be reached by phone at 719-207-2322. on the Old Cow Town Resort website or on their Facebook Page. It’s great to see something happening back at the Old Cow Town!Cow Town Howlin Blues Festival

Saguache News – July 4

No Fireworks? Colorado’s Red, White and Blue 

Happy Birthday America! Yes, today is the country’s 242nd birthday. And while those celebrations have traditionally included fireworks displays, this year’s dry conditions have caused the cancellation of many shows across Colorado. 

But fear not, good citizens, because when it comes to states, Colorado simply couldn’t be more patriotic. Its nickname is the Centennial State, because in the year of America’s 100th Birthday – 1876 – Colorado received its statehood. And of course, there’s the fact that “America The Beautiful” was written by Katherine Bates when she saw Pikes Peak and was inspired to write the verse, “Purple’s mountain’s majesty, above the fruited plain.”

But did you know that Colorado is the only state whose official geological symbols are red, white and blue?! Yes, when it comes to Colorado’s State Mineral (red- rhodochrosite), State Rock (white – Yule marble) and State Gem (blue- aquamarine) this color trio is an intended tribute to America. redwhiteblue_co_blank


The color red is represented by Colorado’s Official State Mineral: Rhodochrosite. The official bill to designate a state mineral was sponsored in 2002 by State Senator Ken Chlouber and Representative Carl Miller, both from Leadville.

The initial suggestion was presented by a high school Earth Science class, located near Bailey, who became aware that Colorado did not have a state mineral. After some debate, the students decided that rhodochrosite, because of its red color (similar to Colorado, which means “reddish” in Spanish) should be the state mineral. They wrote a letter to Rep. Miller suggesting the designation. And for a couple of country-loving Americans like Miller and Chlouber, working jointly to introduce this legislation was easy! Within three months rhodochrosite was designated the Colorado State Mineral and signed into law by Governor Bill Owens on April 17, 2002.


The white color in the geologically patriotic combination is represented by Yule Marble, Colorado’s State Rock. Again, it was a group of young people – Girl Scout Troop 357 – who prompted State Representative Betty Boyd to introduce the bill.  As the state known for the majestic Rocky Mountains, the scout group argued, it seemed odd that the state did not yet have an official state rock. Being surrounded by Yule Marble in the floors and trim of the State Capitol building, it wasn’t too much of a legislative reach to accept the designation. 

Owens Signs Yule Marble Bill_Leadville Today_ red white blue

Governor Bill Owens signs the Yule Marble State Rock designation into law in 2004 as the Girls Scouts look on. Photo: Leadville Today with permission Colorado Geological Survey.

In addition, the Girl Scouts urged, designating the Yule Marble would complete the official geological symbols to be red, white and blue. Smart young women! Gov. Owens had the honor of completing the star-spangled trifecta when he signed the bill into law in March 2004.

Yule Marble has been used in many famous buildings and sculptures, including the Lincoln Memorial, Washington Monument, and the Tomb of the Unknowns.


Rounding out the American-themed symbols is the color blue, represented by Aquamarine designated as the state gemstone of Colorado back in 1971.

You’ll need to head towards the mountain peaks of Mount Antero and Mount White in Chaffee County, to capture the finest quality of these “blue” aquamarines. According to the Colorado Geological Survey website, they are also among the highest in elevation, located at 13,000 to 14,200 feet. The crystals in these cavities range in color from light blue to pale blue and deep aquamarine green, and in size from very small to 6 cm in length.

There you have it! So as you celebrate America’s birthday this week, sing out a little song of “Three Cheers for the Red (Rhodochrosite), White (Yule Marble), and Blue (Aquamarine)!” Happy Independence Day!

Kathy Bedell © Saguache Today


Saguache News – July 3

Got Pain? Get Relief in Saguache Today!

By Kathy Bedell © Saguache Today

Do your feet hurt? Or maybe you know someone who complains about discomfort in their hands? Well then, it’s time to take your boots off and get to the root of the problem! Your feet – and hands – are a major part of your overall health, so it’s important to take care of them.

Suzanne Rogue_Reflexology_Saguache Today

Saguache artist Judith Page (in lounger) takes advantage of the benefits of this ancient technique at Thursday’s “Reflexology for Self-Care” class provided by Suzanne Rogue. Photo: Saguache Today/Kathy Bedell

Every Thursday, Suzanne Rouge holds a “Reflexology for Self-Care” class at BeBop studios in downtown Saguache. Each session offers a knowledgeable overview of Reflexology, also known as zone therapy. The technique is considered an alternative medicine involving the application of pressure to the feet and hands without the use of oil or lotion. Think of the feet – and hands – as the road-map to your good health.

For example, if you are experiencing kidney discomfort, there’s a spot on your foot where, when pressure is applied, painful symptoms can be reduced or eliminated altogether. In other cases, foot or hand pain can point to more complicated issues with other organs.reflexology

Suzanne is a true professional and has years of experience and instruction, allowing her patients to immediately feel at ease as she takes you on a journey of your feet and how you can experience the benefits of this ancient technique. Not only do you come away feeling more relaxed, but she provides you with a bit “homework,” including techniques that you can easily do at home. And if you’re a bit shy about someone taking a look at your feet and touching your tootsies, Suzanne put you right at ease; she’s seen it all!

Research studies demonstrate the many benefits of reflexology, particularly in reducing pain, enhancing relaxation, and reducing psychological symptoms, such as anxiety and depression. It’s certainly worth a try if you’re in pain or possibly taking medication for your discomfort.

It’s time to get to the root of the problem! So if you, or someone you know, has been experiencing foot – or hand – pain or simply want to learn more about your overall health, stop in to the Reflexology class in Saguache Today. The session starts at 11 a.m. and usually runs until 12:30. Gift certificates are also available if you’re looking to motivate someone to take the next step towards their good health.

BeBop  Studio is a part of Saguache Works, a local non-profit, which include the thrift store and 4th Street Food Store. It is located in the back of the building at 317 San Juan Avenue, with access to the room next to the Wapiti Coffee House.

Suzanne Rogue can be reached at 970-308-1415, or check out her website at