BEHOLD, Memorial Weekend is upon us. Before you get your head into three-day weekend mode and the start to summer, we have some items to get your week started:
1. Gov. Jared Polis is in the San Luis Valley Monday and will join state Sen. Cleave Simpson for a bill-signing ceremony on Simpson’s Groundwater Compact Compliance Fund, SB22-028. That’s the legislation that secured $60 million to help the Rio Grande Basin and Republican River Basin meet groundwater pumping and interstate compact compliance requirements. The money came through the state’s portion of the federal American Rescue Plan Act money.
The bill is seen as a major victory to help farmers and ranchers in the Valley retire groundwater pumping wells, among other conservation measures. The Rio Grande Water Conservation District, where Simpson works as general manager, will develop ways for Valley farmers to apply for the money.
After the bill signing, Polis will head to Center, where he will be joined by Jim Ehrlich of the Colorado Potato Association for an announcement about ways to support Colorado’s agriculture community. State Agriculture Commissioner Kate Greenberg and U.S. Department of Agriculture Under Secretary Jenny Lester Moffitt also will be in attendance.
2. Denver Air Connection is set to take over air service at the San Luis Valley Regional Airport on June 8, replacing SkyWest. Denver Air Connection is a subsidiary of Key Lime Air, which is the entity that was awarded the Essential Air Service contract by the U.S. Department of Transportation. Alamosa County Commissioners recommended Key Lime Air/Denver Air Connection as the preferred replacement to SkyWest.
“I’m delighted to welcome this news that will minimize disruptions in air service to the San Luis Valley,” Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet said in a media release. “I’ll keep working in Washington to ensure small, regional airports in Colorado can continue to serve their communities.”
3. Don Richmond and Teri McCartney came around to record the latest episode of The Valley Pod. Together they talked about emerging from a COVID pandemic cocoon to perform again before live audiences, and they discussed his treatments from an autoimmune neuro-muscular syndrome called myasthenia gravis or MG. Both look good and are doing well. Take a listen when the podcast drops Tuesday. We enjoyed having them in our podcast studio.
4. For The Citizen, Memorial Weekend will mean serving free coffee to passersby. We’re planning on greeting travelers – or locals if they want to – with a free cup of coffee, on Saturday, Sunday and Monday mornings. We’ll be set up at the parking lot of the Colorado Welcome Center from 6:30-11 a.m., or until the coffee runs out. We’re grateful to The Roast for the coffee contributions. Stop by. We’d love to see you and hand you a cup of coffee.
5. The photo at top is a cool piece of Valley heritage. Says History Colorado:
Check out one of the largest flags in the History CO Collection! This US flag was used at Fort Garland in the 1870s and has possible ties to the Buffalo Soldiers. We know—it’s in rough shape. The flag is being cleaned and stabilized with hopes of full preservation in the future. More photos HERE.
6. Speaking of Fort Garland, the Fort Garland Museum & Cultural Center is bringing back its Memorial Weekend Encampment. Save the dates for these events going into June and the start of summer:
7. Want to start the week off with a smile? Watch The Citizen’s video production of the Alamosa Elementary School Talent Show organized by the talented art teacher Jenna Eaton and you’ll find yourself in a perfectly fine mood for a Monday. It’s here and at the top of this item.
We’re also pretty tickled by how our video interview with Colorado Agriculture Commissioner Kate Greenberg turned out. We call it Driving with Public Officials. Check it out below and let us know what you think.
Have a great week!
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