Latest News – February 12

Leadville Events for the Days of Sweethearts, Presidents

It’s hard to believe another big weekend is on the slate for the Leadville social scene. After last weekend’s BIG GAME and Mardi Gras celebrations wrapped up on Tuesday, locals and visitors are ready for the next one-two punch known as Valentine’s Day and Presidents Day Weekend.

So here’s the low-down on what’s happening In The ‘Ville. Tonight, you can still get tickets to the annual Wine Tasting event sponsored by the National Mining Hall of Fame & Museum. NMHF_WINE TASTING webThis year the event celebrates notable women of the mining industry with wine, craft beer, live music, and a silent auction at Wine at the Mine: Wine, Women, & Mining. The event is tonight, Friday, Feb. 12. The fun starts at 5:30 p.m. and tickets can be purchased online HERE.

On Saturday, Feb. 13 the High Riders Snowmobile Club will hold the 3rd Annual High Altitude Snowmobile Drag Races out at the golf course. Registration will begin at 9 a.m. There will be a limit of 64 contestants, double elimination divided into three classes: under 800cc, 800’s, and pro/modified classes. There will be lots of great prizes from local merchants and entrants are also given a shirt designed for the event.

The 3rd Annual High Altitude Snow Drag Races take place on February 13 in Leadville. Photo: Leadville Today

The 3rd Annual High Altitude Snow Drag Races take place on February 13 in Leadville. Photo: Leadville Today

Spac_50If you’re Valentine plans include a Saturday night outing, then be sure to check out Leadville’s latest band, Lake County Rain. The group will be playing some original tunes at The Scarlet Bar on 4th and Harrison Avenue. Music starts at 9 p.m.

Also on Saturday night the Knights of Columbus will hold its Polka Dance from 7 – 11 p.m. at The Elks Lodge at 123 W. 5th Street in Leadville. Tickets are $15 per person and can be purchased at the door. The dance is a fundraiser for the Knights from Holy Family Parish in Leadville. This is usually a pack house of good times and old-fashioned fun!

This Saturday's Polka Dance will benefit from a $500 donation in honor of Bill Skala made on behalf of the Legacy Foundation. Photo: Leadville Today

This Saturday’s Polka Dance will benefit from a $500 donation in honor of Bill Skala made on behalf of the Legacy Foundation. Photo: Leadville Today

On Sunday, Feb. 14, sweethearts will be cozied up in the booths at local eateries. If this includes you, dinner options can be considered at The Grill, 715 Elm Street, which will be offering their annual Valentine’s Day Strawberry margarita special, a free one for your sweetheart with dinner purchase.

Ribs and romance await for sweethearts at the Pastime at 120 W. 2nd Street.

Ribs and romance await for sweethearts at the Pastime at 120 W. 2nd Street.

If you’re sweetie is more inclined to the bovine and swine, then check out the BBQ offerings at the Pastime Bar & Café. In fact, as the last existing saloon from the former Red Light District, it may just be one of the most romantic spots in town!

Monday is the official Presidents Day and while banks and government office will be closed, there will be plenty to do around town. Check out these suggestions from LT Contributor Brennan Ruegg, which he listed in a recent Leadville Day Tripper story.

Have a great weekend . . . In The ‘Ville!

Latest News – February 11

First Mount Massive Mush Dog Sled at Golf Course

by Brennan Ruegg, Leadville Today contributor

Last weekend, February 6 & 7, the Colorado Mountain Mushers (CMM) brought the inaugural Mount Massive Mush to Leadville with a state-wide dog sled race at Mt. Massive Golf Course. Nearly a dozen entrants from classes ranging from single ski-jorers to teams of eight dogs pulling sleds along the three miles of groomed course around the country’s highest golf courses.

The inaugural Mount Massive Mush Dog Sled Event was held last weekend in Leadville. Photo: Brennan Ruegg/Leadville Today

The inaugural Mount Massive Mush Dog Sled Event was held last weekend in Leadville. Photo: Brennan Ruegg/Leadville Today

Here’s a Question and Answer session with Mark Hatch, President, Colorado Mountain Mushers

Leadville Today (LT): Where did the Colorado Mountain Mushers begin?

Mark Hatch (MH): CMM began in the late 1980’s as a family oriented club to help promote the sport, and nurture those who are interested in the dog sledding. We are an offshoot from the Rocky Mountain Sled Dog Club when the founders of the club felt that the family aspect of the sport was not being supported. 

LT: What other events do the CMM host throughout the year?

Colorado Mountain Mushers are an off-shoot of the Rocky Mountain Sled Dog Club. Photo: Brennan Ruegg/Leadville Today

Colorado Mountain Mushers are an off-shoot of the Rocky Mountain Sled Dog Club. Photo: Brennan Ruegg/Leadville Today

MH: We try to stay active throughout the year; along with our traditional dog sled races during the winter we also have dry-land races in the fall (one of which we hold in Buena Vista). In the spring we have an annual banquet, during the summer we do a picnic for everyone to get together and socialize, and in early fall we have a group camp out at Camp Hale just north of Leadville. The club always tries to be very proactive in community outreach ranging from classroom visits at schools to canine community dog fairs.

LT: How many members make up the CMM, and from what demographic?

MH: CMM has around 70 memberships, these include individuals, families & associate (non racing) memberships. We range in age from teens still in school to retired teachers.  We have a wide diversity of members; from Plumbers to Orthopedic Surgeons, Ranch Hands to Rocket Scientists who work for Lockheed Martin. Lately we have seen a growth in membership from young professionals who have just 1 or 2 dogs and are looking for a way to get out and enjoy the great outdoors.

LT: What’s new about the Mount Massive Mush this year?

MH: This year we were limited to the golf course property and the trail lengths ranged from one to three miles. Next year we will talk with the Forest Service and see about expanding the race to around 11 miles.

LT: What are entry fees like to races?

MH: We try to keep our entry fees for each of the classes somewhat reasonable, while being able to cover our expenses. They range from $25.00 to $40.00. 

Man's best friend takes the lead at the Inaugural Mount Massive Mush Dog Sled event held in Leadville. Photo: Brennan Ruegg/Leadville Today.

Man’s best friend takes the lead at the Inaugural Mount Massive Mush Dog Sled event held in Leadville. Photo: Brennan Ruegg/Leadville Today.

LT: Do the CMM have any particular connection to Leadville and Lake County?

MH: A hand full of mushers live or have ties to the Leadville / Buena Vista area but we do not have any specific ties to Leadville except it has it’s unique character and is always fun to visit. Plus the community has always been very supportive of our activities.

The CMM also provide a public voice in relevant legislation that affects dogsledding in Colorado. They partner with Mush With PRIDE, a coalition that fosters ethical treatment and raising of sled dogs. As they continue to grow they encourage more involvement from communities like Leadville and individuals with similar interests. Read more about them on their website or facebook page. 

Brennan Ruegg is proud friend of a dog named Mamba.

Latest News – February 10

Leadville Peaks Take Center Stage in Dodge Commercial

It’s all about the snow. Really, it’s about the snow, and Leadville Ski Joring, that keeps Colorado Film Locations owner Brooke Johnson coming back to film commercials and advertisements in Lake County.

Crews with Colorado Film Locations set up outside Leadville's historic Healy House for a Hallmark Card shoot in December. Maybe this holiday scene will appear on a card next Christmas! Photo: Brennan Ruegg/Leadville Today

Crews with Colorado Film Locations set up outside Leadville’s historic Healy House for a Hallmark Card shoot in December. Maybe this holiday scene will appear on a card next Christmas! Photo: Brennan Ruegg/Leadville Today

“It’s also easy to get things done here,” adds Johnson, in an interview with Leadville Today.

And so it was again, at the end of January when a film crew of 40 came into town for a week. They stayed in Leadville hotels and ate in local restaurants while using the two highest peaks in the state as a backdrop for a new Dodge Ram Truck commercial. This video spot highlights some snowmobilers out enjoying the trails, pulling their trailers with those big Dodge trucks.

Be sure to keep an eye out for the snowmobile flip-jump with Colorado’s two highest peaks – Mt Elbert (14,433 ft) and Mt. Massive (14,428 ft) – showing off in the background. Pretty Impressive!

Johnson has been a professional motion picture producer, production manager, and location manager in Colorado since 1977, and has always reserved a special place in his heart and business for Leadville. As a former Leadville Ski Joring champion, and Coloradan at large, Johnson has been spending summers and winters in Leadville for more than thirty years, making him a regional expert for film trade.

Johnson has assembled artistic crews around Leadville and Climax for international companies like Audi, Coors, Dodge, among many others, and helped orchestrate the famous Marine Recruitment commercial, which aired on national television for several years.Spac_50

Spac_50For this recent commercial, Johnson was able to tap into some local snowmobiler talent.

“The High Riders (Snowmobile Club were great to work with and very helpful,” said Johnson. The club was able to help build the jump with a snowcat used for grooming Lake County trails
In addition, the county reaped a financial gain for allowing the crew to use their land out at the gravel pits by the Halfmoon Road for their location shoot. Other private snow mover businesses also benefited from assisting on the commercial which was filmed in Lake County the week of January 18.

Johnson noted how easy it is to shoot in Lake County, because there’s not a complicated permit process or committee, as there is in other mountain towns. Colorado Film Locations works seamlessly throughout established relationships with individuals who help him to simply get the job done, leaving behind plenty of extra coin in local business’ registers.

But not to worry, all you up and coming starlets, Leadville Today will let you know when to be ready for your next close up opportunity. Until then, keep an eye out for this “snowmobile flip-jump” Dodge Ram commercial, filmed In The’Ville.

Latest News – February 9

Schools: Storytime, Scholarships, Skate Skiing to State

Making literature come alive is Lake County Public Library Storyteller Andrew Lee. The library holds Storytime on Thursdays. For times and themes: LINK. Photo Brennan Ruegg/Leadville Today

Making literature come alive is Lake County Public Library Storyteller Andrew Lee. The library holds Storytime every Thursday. For schedule and themes: LINK. Photo Brennan Ruegg/Leadville Today

Spac_50HMI Solicits Scholarship Apps from Sophomores

Did you know that the root of the word sophomore translates in some Greek etomology circles as “wise fool.”  Perhaps that’s appropriate for second year students, who are expected to know the how and why of everything. While at the same time, the term sophomoric implies a certain level of immaturity, and is often, accompanied with an apology.

Two full High Mountain Institute (HMI) scholarships are available to Leadville high school sophomores.

Two High Mountain Institute (HMI) scholarships are available to Leadville high school sophomores.

Regardless, if you know any “wise fools” at Lake County High School (LCHS) you should make them aware of this great opportunity from High Mountain Institute (HMI), located right here in Leadville.

Here’s the official word about how LCHS Sophomores can apply from Ray McGaughey, HMI Director of Admissions:

Is your son or daughter a sophomore at LCHS? Applications for the two full High Mountain Institute (HMI) scholarships are due February 15th. LCHS sophomores apply to spend a semester of their junior year as a boarding student at HMI. For more info and to apply,click here
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Panthers Skate to State, Host Teams Next Saturday

The Lake County Nordic Team traveled to Cordillera Ranch on Saturday, Feb. 6 to compete in a same day pursuit race. They competed in a three kilometer classic race in the morning followed by a three kilometer classic race in the afternoon. Both courses were on the same track – a rolling series of hills that encircled an open meadow.

Ariel Benney (front) earned a berth to the state meet with her fine skating performance on Saturday. Photo: Sarah Hudelson

Ariel Benney (front) earned a berth to the state meet with her fine skating performance on Saturday. Photo: Sarah Hudelson

The day was perfect for the race. There were cold temperatures in the morning for the classic race, but there was abundant sunshine and blue sky all day that warmed the temperatures for the afternoon skate races.

Taylor Stack was the first Panther across the line in the boys classic race, where he placed 19th. Charlie Koch was next in 27th, and Joe Koch was 45th. Brandon Hanson was stuck behind some fallen skiers in the start, but he fought his way to 58th, and Zayden Tufte was right on his heels in 60th. Zach Coffin skied to a solid 85th place finish. Matthew Seibel was 98th, Andrew Gardner was 103rd, and Jarrett Rongstad was 111th.

Most of the Panther girls skied within sight of one another for the classic portion, and in the end Ariel Benney was the first across the line in 37th. Coming in right behind was Caroline Benney in 39th, Whitney White in 42nd, Molly Lenhard in 43rd, and Jackie Williams in 44th. Anna Schehrer rounded out the team in 71st.

After a short break, the skiers returned to the course once again for the skate portion of the day. This afforded the better skaters the opportunity to move up from their classic portion of the day.

Panther Zach Coffin ended up 90th on Saturday's Nordic Ski Meet on Feb. 6. Photo: Sarah Hudelson

Panther Zach Coffin ended up 90th at the Nordic Ski Meet on Feb. 6. Photo: Sarah Hudelson

Stack flew around the skate portion, passing a number of skiers and moving up to 14th overall with the 9th fastest skating split on the day. Koch (Charlie) had a solid performance, good enough to qualify him for the state meet, and ended up 33rd overall.  Koch (Joe) had the 38th fastest skate split and moved up a few places to 42nd overall. Hanson and Tufte both worked their way through the pack and moved up to 56th and 59th respectively. Coffin ended up 90th on the day, while Rongstad had a great skate portion to move up to 103rd. Gardner rounded out the team in 106th overall.

Once again in the skate race, Lenhard, and White pushed each other and skied the race together. In the end, Lenhard skied the 33rd fastest split in skating to place 40th overall, White had the 34th fastest split in skating and placed 39th, and Benney had the 35th fastest split to place 36th overall. Lenhard and Benney both earned a berth to the state meet with their fine skating performance. Williams fought through the skate portion and finished 48th overall. Schehrer dropped a few places in the skating portion and ended up 77th overall.

“We had a good day overall – not our best, but a good day,” said Coach Karl Remsen. “There were a few bright spots and pretty solid races all around. I think with a good week of training and a little rest we will be ready to ski fast on our home course next weekend.”

The Panthers will be in action at the Colorado Mountain College Timberline Trails for an individual start skate race on Saturday, Feb. 13. Come on out if you want to cheer on the Panthers and catch a glimpse of some of the best Nordic skiers in the country. 

Taylor Stack (Bib 57) digs in for the uphill climb at the Eagle Nordic Ski meet on Feb. 6 Photo: Sarah Hudelson.

Taylor Stack (Bib 57) digs in for the uphill climb at the Eagle Nordic Ski meet on Feb. 6 Photo: Sarah Hudelson.

Latest News – February 8

Leadville Fans Watch Broncos Beat Panthers 24-10

There were more than a few Leadville fans at the BIG Game on Sunday to watch the Denver Broncos beat the Carolina Panthers in SuperBowl 50 in a 10-24 final score. Photo: Ramey Hinton - Cyclone Kleen Up.

There were more than a few Leadville fans at the BIG Game on Sunday to watch the Denver Broncos beat the Carolina Panthers in SuperBowl 50 in a 24-10 final score. Photo: Ramey Hinton – Cyclone Kleen Up.

Spac_50Legacy Foundation Distributes Funds to Local Projects

On Thursday, Feb. 4 the Leadville Trail 100 Legacy Foundation distributed funds to community projects in Lake County. The ceremony was held at the Leadville/Lake County Senior Citizen Center, and saw Legacy board members Tyrone Rimbert, Carl Miller and John Cirullo distribute funds as follows: 

A new 50” TV monitor with Wii video game console, along with wi-fi internet access, valued at $750 was donated to the Senior Citizen Center.

Leadville/Lake County Senior Citizen Center Manager Loretta Burns(left of TV), is pictured with Legacy Foundation members (left to right): Tryone Rimbert, Carl Miller and John Circullo

Leadville/Lake County Senior Citizen Center Manager Loretta Burns(left of TV), is pictured with Leadville Legacy Foundation members (left to right): Tyrone Rimbert, Carl Miller and John Cirullo who donated the TV and Wii gaming system.

 

The foundation awarded a $500 donation in Bill Skala’s name to the  Knights of Columbus Polka Dance. Skala, who passed away at the age of 96 years in 2015, was a big supporter of the Leadville Race Series since the beginning over 30 years ago. He was also a Knight and a big fan of the annual Polka Dance; Skala enjoyed seeing folks having a good time. The $500 will go towards offsetting the cost of this Saturday’s Chuck Spurlock Variety Band Valentine’s Day Polka Dance! 

This Saturday's Polka Dance will benefit from a $500 donation in honor of Bill Skala made on behalf of the Legacy Foundation. Photo: Leadville Today

This Saturday’s Polka Dance will benefit from a $500 donation in honor of Bill Skala, made on behalf of the Leadville Legacy Foundation.

Sponsored by the Knights of Columbus, the Polka Dance will be held on Saturday, Feb. 13 from 7 – 11 p.m. at The Elks Lodge at 123 W. 5th Street in Leadville. Tickets are $15 per person and can be purchased at the door. The dance is a fundraiser for the Knights from Holy Family Parish in Leadville.

The Legacy Foundation also presented a $1000 donation to Helping Hands of Lake County . Helping Hands of Lake County  is a privately held nonprofit which awards small grants for food, clothing, rent, utilities, medical assistance, and medication.  Applicants must be a US citizen and a resident of Lake County for at least one year. This group is an arm of Lake County Human Services. Contact Joann Cirullo for assistance: 719-486-2887.

Anges Fabian and Connie Yant (middle left to right) receive a $1000 donation on behalf of Helping Hands. The funds were distributed by (left to right): Leadville Legacy Foundation Members Tryone Rimbert, Carl Miller and John Circullo

Agnes Fabian and Connie Yant (middle, left to right) receive a $1000 donation on behalf of Helping Hands, a Lake County non-profit. The funds were distributed by (left to right): Leadville Legacy Foundation Members Tyrone Rimbert, Carl Miller and John Cirullo. Photo: Leadville Today.

 

Legacy Board Members also presented $2,500 toward the West Park Playground. Sarah Mudge accepted the award on behalf of the playground committee.

“We are attempting to renovate the West Park Elementary School playground. We’re really excited about this project for the kids at the school, as well as the senior-assisted living facility across from the school,” stated Mudge. 

In 2002, the Leadville Legacy Foundation was created as a nonprofit foundation, the charitable arm of the famous Leadville Trail 100 race series. Their mission was to address the ever-increasing needs of the Leadville and Lake County communities. The Legacy fund thrives through generous contributions from individuals and corporations, as well as a portion of the Leadville Race Series entry fees with every dollar going directly to meet the needs of the community.