COLORADO’S Front Range – Pueblo, Colorado Springs, Denver – were setting record high temperatures through the weekend. The San Luis Valley? Not quite. Saturday’s high of 90 in Alamosa didn’t reach the record set for the date last year at 92 degrees. Just thought you could use some good news on a Monday. Maybe we’ll get a bit of rain this week. See, a bit more good news.

BTW, the month of June ended with 1.27 inches of rain, above the .043 that is normal for the month. This Monday is full of good news. Here are some other items to get your week going, including a cool lead-off item on legendary running coach Larry Zaragoza, now town manager in La Jara.

The BFO (Bull Fighters Only) pre-Stampede event over the weekend was all action (top photo, plus more below). Now it’s 10 days and counting to the 100th Ski Hi Stampede and its opening act, the Dwight Yoakam and Josh Abbott Band concert. Tickets are still available.

larry zaragoza and sam mamet_FORMATTED

1.Sam Mamet Good Governance Award goes to Larry Zaragoza

Larry Zaragoza, town manager of La Jara, describes good municipal governance as being courteous to the public, solving problems of the town, and finding ways to allow citizens to participate. He also values transparency and the importance of team work. For these values, Zaragoza was awarded the 2022 Sam Mamet Good Governance Award by the Colorado Municipal League during a June ceremony. He was nominated for the award by La Jara Mayor Paula Medina.

“Good governance is overseeing a municipality and making sure all the pieces are working together and doing it in a way that’s a positive approach and asset building approach where our staff, our trustees and everybody feels like they’re a part of what’s going on in our community and the decisions being made,” Medina said in her nomination.

Zaragoza, one of Colorado’s top cross country and distance running coaches before his transition to municipal government, recognized his wife, Julie, and the town employees of La Jara, for putting him in a position to be recognized.

Zaragoza and his family have lived in La Jara for 45-plus years. “To receive this award and be recognized for it, I know I didn’t achieve this alone,” he said. “This has been with the support of our employees, these individuals have to receive credit too for the team effort.”

Concert 2022 Chris Collins (Facebook Post) (1)

2. Benefit concert for Boys & Girls Clubs SLV
Boys & Girls Clubs of the San Luis Valley is hosting a John Denver Tribute community concert by Chris Collins on Tuesday, July 19, at Richardson Hall on the Adams State campus. The event is a fundraiser for the local Boys and Girls Clubs; tickets are $10 online in advance and $15 at the door the day of the show. Advance tickets are on sale at

a newly built trail bridge allows hikers to cross without wading the creek

3. Latest SLV GO trail gets a christening this Friday

San Luis Valley Great Outdoors (SLV GO!) and Costilla County will host a community ribbon cutting for the Rito Seco Park Trails starting at 11 a.m. on Friday, July 15. The final five trail bridges and last section of trail have been completed by the SLV GOATs, the locally-hired professional trail and restoration crew team by SLV GO! A free community meal will follow the ribbon cutting. Rito Seco Park is located 9.2 miles from northeast of the town of San Luis, turning on to County Road 19.5 and then taking a right on to Rito Seco Rd, ending at the large parking lot off to the right. A total of eight miles of trail have been built, with one out and back overlook trail and two loops that progress up the Rito Seco drainage. All trails were built for sustainability and to require minimal maintenance, while emphasizing the user experience. It is open to all non-motorized use: hiking, mountain biking, and horseback riding. SLV GO! reminds all users to Pack In, Pack Out all of their trash when enjoying this area.

4. Colorado Recreational Trails Committee accepting applications

Speaking of trails, the Colorado Parks & Wildlife needs people in Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District to serve on its Colorado Recreational Trails Committee. The San Luis Valley is part of the 3rd Congressional District. Members of the committee review, score, and rank grant applications to formulate funding recommendations for Colorado Trail grants. To apply, submit a resume to with the words “Recreational Trails Committee Application” and the congressional district number in the subject line. Application deadline is Aug. 4 at 5 p.m.

Kattelyn Smith in the podcast studio

5. Tuesday PODCAST drop
Adams State Athletic Director Katelyn Smith is the latest guest on The Valley Pod. The episode posts Tuesday on or wherever you get your podcasts.

6. Photos from BFO (Bull Fighters Only) pre-Stampede event by C. Claire Lara:

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