Saguache News – January 18

May The Force Be With You . . . Again!

If you missed seeing your favorite Jedi on the big screen last weekend, then you’re in luck because this blockbuster film will be showing again at Cozy Castle Cinema in downtown Saguache Today. Come and see the latest in this epic film series: “Star Wars: The Last Jedi”.


Luke Skywalker’s peaceful and solitary existence gets upended when he encounters Rey, a young woman who shows strong signs of the Force. Her desire to learn the ways of the Jedi forces Luke to make a decision that changes their lives forever. Meanwhile, Kylo Ren and General Hux lead the First Order in an all-out assault against Leia and the Resistance for supremacy of the galaxy.

The Cozy Castle Cinema in downtown Saguache.

The Cozy Castle Cinema in downtown Saguache.

Showtimes are Friday at 7 p.m., Saturday at 4 p.m. & 7 p.m.; and Sunday at 4 p.m.

Ticket prices are $7 with children 3 and under free. The Cozy Castle Cinema is located at 403 4th St, in downtown Saguache. 719-221-4159.


Saguache News – January 16

SLV 4H Meets In Saguache on Jan. 17

When it comes to effective, sustainable – not to mention fun – youth-driven organizations in rural Colorado, 4H still stands tall in the crowd. And the same holds true in Saguache Today with the San Luis Valley 4H Club. So it’s roundup time to see what the local members have been up to and what’s coming up that kids can get involved with.


The competition was fun and fierce at the recent San Luis Valley 4H Robotics Table Clear contest. Photo: SLV 4H Facebook Page.

Earlier this month, the SLV 4-Her Kristine Hoffner competed at Western National Roundup in Denver, and the local SLV 4H Club hosted a robotics challenge. This group doesn’t let any grass grow under their feet! Shout out to Kristine, whose team placed 4th. Also, congrats to Ivhan and Damion who got first in the Robotics Table Clear contest!

Upcoming Council Meeting

The next upcoming council meeting for the Saguache County Council will be held tomorrow, January 17 at 4:45 p.m. at Mountain Valley School. The 4-H leadership councils are a great opportunity for youth from around the Valley to meet other 4-Hers and get leadership and real life experience. Councils do community service, plan outreach events and do fundraising to pay for 4-H costs like attending camp. Kids who regularly attend council meetings and help at 4-H events can apply for camp reimbursements. Youth also get special raffle tickets for each council meeting and event they attend. All 4-Hers are encouraged to participate.


As a 4-H volunteer you will play a key role as an adult mentor and role model for young people that live in your community. MORE INFO.

 For readers unfamiliar with this national youth development program,  4-H teaches kids life skills through partnerships with caring adults. The program is a cooperative effort between Colorado State University Extension and Alamosa, Conejos, Costilla, Mineral, Rio Grande and Saguache counties. Extension programs are available to all without discrimination. For more information on the 4-H program visit their website or contact the San Luis Valley Extension office at 719-852-7381 or

Saguache News – January 15

MLK Day: Dream A Dream in Saguache Today

January 15 marks what would have been the 89th Birthday for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. if the Civil Right leader was still alive today. Today’s federal holiday marks his contributions and commitment to racial equality in the United States. The following is his most notable speech, as relevant today as it was some 55 years ago. Please take some time today to remember this extraordinaire  man and his ideals.

I Have A Dream

© by Martin Luther King, Jr.
Delivered on steps at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C. on August 28, 1963
MLK2Five score years ago, a great American, in whose symbolic shadow we stand signed the Emancipation Proclamation. This momentous decree came as a great beacon light of hope to millions of Negro slaves who had been seared in the flames of withering injustice. It came as a joyous daybreak to end the long night of captivity.
But one hundred years later, we must face the tragic fact that the Negro is still not free. One hundred years later, the life of the Negro is still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination. One hundred years later, the Negro lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity. One hundred years later, the Negro is still languishing in the corners of American society and finds himself an exile in his own land. So we have come here today to dramatize an appalling condition.
In a sense we have come to our nation’s capital to cash a check. When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words of the Constitution and the declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir. This note was a promise that all men would be guaranteed the inalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
It is obvious today that America has defaulted on this promissory note insofar as her citizens of color are concerned. Instead of honoring this sacred obligation, America has given the Negro people a bad check which has come back marked “insufficient funds.” But we refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt. We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of opportunity of this nation. So we have come to cash this check — a check that will give us upon demand the riches of freedom and the security of justice. We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of now. This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice. Now is the time to open the doors of opportunity to all of God’s children. Now is the time to lift our nation from the quicksands of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood.

It would be fatal for the nation to overlook the urgency of the moment and to underestimate the determination of the Negro. This sweltering summer of the Negro’s legitimate discontent will not pass until there is an invigorating autumn of freedom and equality. Nineteen sixty-three is not an end, but a beginning. Those who hope that the Negro needed to blow off steam and will now be content will have a rude awakening if the nation returns to business as usual. There will be neither rest nor tranquility in America until the Negro is granted his citizenship rights. The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright day of justice emerges.

Native American children dress in traditional ceremonial costumes for the Saguache Pow-Wow. Photo: Saguache Today

But there is something that I must say to my people who stand on the warm threshold which leads into the palace of justice. In the process of gaining our rightful place we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred.

We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. We must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence. Again and again we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force. The marvelous new militancy which has engulfed the Negro community must not lead us to distrust of all white people, for many of our white brothers, as evidenced by their presence here today, have come to realize that their destiny is tied up with our destiny and their freedom is inextricably bound to our freedom. We cannot walk alone.

And as we walk, we must make the pledge that we shall march ahead. We cannot turn back. There are those who are asking the devotees of civil rights, “When will you be satisfied?” We can never be satisfied as long as our bodies, heavy with the fatigue of travel, cannot gain lodging in the motels of the highways and the hotels of the cities. We cannot be satisfied as long as the Negro’s basic mobility is from a smaller ghetto to a larger one. We can never be satisfied as long as a Negro in Mississippi cannot vote and a Negro in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote. No, no, we are not satisfied, and we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream.

Come spring, mountain passageways open up, their melting snow creating a welcoming stream through the Great Sand Dunes. Photo: Saguache Today/Brennan Ruegg.

I am not unmindful that some of you have come here out of great trials and tribulations. Some of you have come fresh from narrow cells. Some of you have come from areas where your quest for freedom left you battered by the storms of persecution and staggered by the winds of police brutality. You have been the veterans of creative suffering. Continue to work with the faith that unearned suffering is redemptive.

Go back to Mississippi, go back to Alabama, go back to Georgia, go back to Louisiana, go back to the slums and ghettos of our northern cities, knowing that somehow this situation can and will be changed. Let us not wallow in the valley of despair.

I say to you today, my friends, that in spite of the difficulties and frustrations of the moment, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.

I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal.”

I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slaveowners will be able to sit down together at a table of brotherhood.

I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a desert state, sweltering with the heat of injustice and oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.
I have a dream that my four children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

I have a dream today.
I have a dream that one day the state of Alabama, whose governor’s lips are presently dripping with the words of interposition and nullification, will be transformed into a situation where little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls and walk together as sisters and brothers.

I have a dream today.
I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together.

In this Alpine Achievers Initiative learning exercise local students learn the importance of what to bring in their backpack when the venturing outdoors in Saguache Today. Photo: Saguache Today/Kathy Bedell

This is our hope. This is the faith with which I return to the South. With this faith we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. With this faith we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith we will be able to work together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day.
This will be the day when all of God’s children will be able to sing with a new meaning, “My country, ’tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing. Land where my fathers died, land of the pilgrim’s pride, from every mountainside, let freedom ring.”

And if America is to be a great nation this must become true. So let freedom ring from the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire. Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York. Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies of Pennsylvania!
Let freedom ring from the snowcapped Rockies of Colorado!
Let freedom ring from the curvaceous peaks of California!
But not only that; let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia!
Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain of Tennessee!
Let freedom ring from every hill and every molehill of Mississippi. From every mountainside, let freedom ring.

When we let freedom ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, “Free at last! free at last! Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!”

Saguache News – January 12

Karaoke Friday at The Village Pub

What’s your go-to Karaoke song? Picking the perfect Karaoke song can be a tough choice. The song has to be popular enough so people can sing along with you, but easy enough for a karaoke beginner to master.  Whether you’re a regular crooner or a novice, head on down to The Village Pub in downtown Saguache tonight and be ready to sing your heart out, because Karaoke is back!

Village Pub

The Village Pub is located at San Juan and 4th Streets in downtown Saguache, Colorado.

Deano Maes with Sunset Productions is back making you sound better than you normally do from 7 -10 p.m. or later.

On top of that The Village Pub will be extending their New Year 16 oz draft of Dos Equis. $3.50 will get you your first pour, you get the cup and $2,50 refills. It’s a “little liquid courage for a good price.” 

The Pub is also offering some tasty specials start at at 6 p.m., which includes $1 wings, $.75 mozzarella sticks, $2 garlic knots and sausage cannolis. Also, they will give you your first, non-premium, pizza topping free!

The Village Pub is located at the corner of San Juan and 4th Street in downtown Saguache.  (719) 655-2088. You can also connect with them on Facebook

Supplemental Food Distribution on Saturday

The next Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) Distribution will be tomorrow, Saturday, Jan. 13, at Lazy KV Estates from 10:30 – 12 Noon at the clubhouse.supplemental-commodity-distribution_saguache_8 

A bit later Saturday afternoon, the Crestone TEFAP commodities will be from 1:30 to 3:00 next to the Crestone Town Hall at 108 Galena Avenue.

Please bring proof of income, residency, and photo id, if available. If you are having someone pickup for you, a proxy form must be signed or on file.
This institution is an equal opportunity provideEveryone is welcome for the supplemental distribution!

If available, please bring proof of income, residency, and photo id. If you are having someone pick up for you, don’t forget to send in your proxy form. This institution is an equal opportunity provider.  

Saguache News – January 11

FREE Clinic for Pets in Center

A FREE Spay/Neuter Clinic will be held at the Center Fire Station this Friday and Saturday,  January 12 & 13. This program will be offered on a first come, first served basis, since the former appointment model saw too many “no-shows” resulting in lost time and resources.


Be a responsible pet owner and get your cat or dog spayed or neutered!

Therefore pet owners are asked to check-in on either day at 7:30 a.m. Check in will run until 8 a.m.

If you show up on Friday by 8 a.m. and the clinic is full, you will be given a rain check for the following day, but you must be there on Saturday, Jan. 13 by 8 a.m.

Once your cat or dog is registered, you may then plan on picking them up at 5:30 p.m. that same day. Please bring your dogs with a collar and leash, and bring cats in a carrier if possible. Some crates will be provided at the clinic; if you bring your own crate, please write your name on it.

In addition to being fixed, your pet will also be given age appropriate shots. Bring your cats, kittens, dogs and puppies that fall within these guidelines:

  • Kittens must weigh 2 lbs
  • Puppies must be 8 weeks old
  • Nursing mom’s are fine as long as the babies are 5-6 weeks old.
  • No breakfast if your pet weighs over 2 lbs.

THANK YOU for being responsible pet owners!


Saguache News – January 8

Teacher to Class: “Can You Hear Me Now?”

By Joyce Rankin, Board of Education, 3rd Congressional District

Joyce Rankin

Joyce Rankin

Joyce Rankin is on the State Board of Education representing the Third Congressional District, which includes Saguache and Saguache County. She writes the monthly column, “Across the Street” to share with constituents in her district.  The Department of Education, where the State Board of Education meets, is located across the street from the Capitol.She may be reached at

“It’s just common sense.” How many times have you heard this phrase and thought “If only more people would just use common sense”?  I was thinking that during a conversation with Dan Snowberger, School Superintendent in Durango.

Dan and I, along with a thousand other educators, attended an Excellence in Education conference last month where use of technology in the K-12 classroom was discussed.  While there are already lessons available that introduce students, as early as Kindergarten, to technology, the conversation turned to middle and high school students use of cell phones in the classroom.  How can a student concentrate on the task at hand when they are on their cell phone texting a friend?  The answer for one Principal in Snowberger’s district was to ban cell phones in his middle school. “Ban cell phones”, you say. “That’s impossible.”

Evidently, not for Durango middle school Principal, Shane Voss.  First, Mr. Voss invited parents and interested community members to a screening of a film titled “Screenagers” explaining how the child’s brain develops. The film attempted to explain the result of too much “screen time” or time spent in front of a computer screen or cell phone.


You won’t find any cell-phones here as Saguache students are fully engaged in a local library program in 2017. Photo: Saguache Today/KathyBedell.

At first parents had some concerns about the importance of phones when they needed to get in touch with their child in an emergency situation.  Mr. Voss assured parents that there would always be personnel available to answer the office phone during school hours. The emphasis of the new “no cell phone” rule was to “keep students engaged in the present.” said Voss.

“We have a highly collaborative and innovative learning environment”, stated Mr. Voss, “The students can now use 100% of their energy with the task at hand”. He also added that social bullying during school time has greatly decreased. 

Shane Voss, Principal of Mountain Middle School (Grades 4-8) created a cell phone free environment that seems to be working.  There is a time and place for the teen culture of social media, it’s just not at Mountain Middle School. Technology certainly has its place but so does “focus”.

Common sense? Yes, coupled with strong leadership and community support.


Saguache News – January 6

Winter Driving: Be Prepared for Snowy Conditions 

Do you remember driving through your first white out? Scary, huh? Have you ever been behind the wheel, maybe driving over Poncha Pass when the view out your windshield turned into a swirling vortex of hypnotizing snowflakes that block your vision to the front of your hood? It’s terrifying! No doubt, with today’s snow storm forecasted for many parts of Colorado, you will see more than one side-of-the-road TV interview with a driver’s harrowing tale of surviving their first winter driving adventure in Colorado.




With that in mind, here’s a review of the winter driving laws, regulations and tips that will make traveling a safer and less terrifying trip for everyone.

First, if you’re not already, plug into the Colorado Department of Transportation’s App. It will save motorists lots of frustration by letting you know when there’s trouble on the roads, particularly Highway 285. While this major throughfare through the SLV doesn’t shut down often (like I-70!), it’s always better to be waiting it out in the safety and warmth of a roadside diner than on the side of the road, an inherently more dangerous situation in white-out conditions as gigantic snowplows maneuver about. So check out the road conditions and closures before you head out and plan accordingly.

emergency roadside kitHave you replenished your emergency roadside kits? Or perhaps you’re new to the state and are wondering what is an ERK? It doesn’t take much time of money to assemble this kit and place it in each of your vehicles, but the comfort in knowing it’s there as you white knuckle another drive home is worth every granola bar and extra pair of socks!

And finally, for now, know what the rules are and what is required by law to have your vehicle out on the road during a winter storm. Not having the proper tires for winter driving conditions is not only dangerous, but costly as these restrictions are not regularly enforced and ticketed accordingly. You can find those details HERE.

Radar Winter storm

A sizable winter storm is headed towards Saguache Today, January 6, 2018.

Remember, the Colorado State Patrol is there to help you, not just “pull you over.” Never will you be more grateful to see that stiff-brimmed, mounty-looking hat at your driver’s side window than when than when you’re been stranded on the side of the road in freezing temperatures for hours. They are decent, dedicated men and women; please treat them that way.

To that end, in this post Saguache Today introduces a new columnist: Trooper Gary Cutler with the Colorado State Patrol. Here’s his take from the other side of the badge. Stay safe, travel smart and let Saguache Today know how things are looking on your drive when its appropriate and safe to do so!

Move Over, It’s the Law . . . Still!Trooper Gary Cutler Column

I know my readers would never intentionally break the law, or endanger anyone’s life.  So this time I wanted to talk to you about the move over law.  By the end of the article, I want you to be knowledgeable about the law and then to go have a conversation with someone you know.  This could be family, friends, co-workers, or if you’re not the shy type, perhaps a stranger.  This is the only way we can get control of injuring or killing officers in the line of duty.

The road has been my office for the past 14 years and as a motorcycle officer for the last 11 years.  I can tell you that over those years during traffic contacts there has been more than one time I have had to run out of the way of a car drifting out of its lane heading towards me.  None of the times I was almost hit was by someone trying to hit me; they just weren’t paying attention to driving.  That means they weren’t able to correctly do the only thing they were supposed to accomplish sitting behind the wheel.  I can assure you the officer will be anything but sympathetic when he catches up to the driver that has almost hit him.

A lot of traffic enforcement officers spend a large amount of time standing somewhere on the roadway during their shift.  Remember, this is their office.  Try to think of it this way, you’re sitting in your office and every day cars speeds by your chair going 65 MPH a foot and a half from you.  Oh and by the way, sometimes they may actually hit your chair.  If this happened to the average person every day, I guarantee people would be changing their driving habits immediately.  They would demand it, because that is absurd behavior to have to put up with every day.

Now you know what it feels like to work the road as a law enforcement officer, let’s look at the move over law itself.  It is a law that requires drivers to move over for a patrol car, maintenance vehicle, or tow truck on the shoulder of a roadway with 2 adjacent lanes in the same direction.  The law states a driver shall exhibit due care and caution and yield right of way by moving into a lane at least one moving lane apart from the authorized vehicle. 

To be able to move over in moderate to heavy traffic requires the driver to be paying attention to what’s happening ahead of them.  I’m not talking about just the car in front of you.  It requires scanning as far out as you can to know what’s coming up.  If you see flashing lights don’t wait to the last minute to move over.  Do it as soon as possible, that way you do not have to be right on top of the officer on the shoulder when you’re looking behind you trying to change lanes.

If you are unable to move over due to a large amount of traffic then you are required to significantly slow down.  It states the driver shall reduce and maintain a safe speed and proceed with due care and caution. There is no specific speed given, but I can tell you it is not lowering your speed by just 5-10 MPH.   Coming from someone that has worked the road, that is not slow enough, and a law enforcement officer will be talking to you.

Please do this for anyone on the side of the road, not just us.  And now you know the facts.

As always, safe travels!

Writer and Trooper Gary Cutler is a Public Information Officer for the Colorado State Patrol.