THE flowers were blooming and plentiful on our weekend Mother’s Day trip to The Flower Market on N. Hwy 285 in Monte Vista. We hope your Monday and the week ahead is equally fabulous. Here are a few items and some notable moments to get the week started.
1. Sometimes we’re lucky enough to document historic moments. One such event came Friday when Pueblo Isleta Governor Vernon Abeyta, speaking on behalf of the six Pueblos along the middle Rio Grande through New Mexico, called on the interstate Rio Grande Compact Commission to include it in all future communications and conversations on governance of the river.
At the annual Rio Grande Compact Commission meeting held in Alamosa Friday, Abeyta said it was the first time all six Pueblos attended a compact meeting. The Rio Grande Compact Commission, a body of water commissioners representing Colorado, New Mexico and Texas, has held 83 annual meetings and has met as a body 106 times. Watch Abeyta make his remarks during the commission meeting held at the Rio Grande Water Conservation District here:
2.The Rio Grande Compact Commission meeting brings a good annual reminder of all the stakeholders and communities that rely on the Rio Grande, from the headwaters originating in the San Luis Valley through New Mexico and into El Paso, Texas. Taking in the compact commission meetings was Lewis H. Entz, who served 20 years in the state legislature. He said he turned 90 and looked as healthy as a country hoss. Entz ran 70 different water bills both as a state senator and state representative for the Valley. Good to see him out and about.
3. Speaking of the Rio Grande, Douglas County is in receipt of a final version of a confidential memorandum put together by water attorney Steve Leonhardt, who is advising the three Douglas Commissioners on the proposal to export water from the Valley’s aquifers and the Rio Grande to the Front Range bedroom community. Douglas County Commissioner Abe Laydon, during an appearance on a KOA radio talk show last week, said he and his fellow commissioners Lora Thomas and George Teal will meet in executive session to review the memorandum. Leonhardt’s analysis and recommendation will sway Laydon on whether or not to support the plan. Thomas does not support the plan by Renewable Water Resources while Teal does. Expect a decision by June, if not sooner.
4. On The Valley Pod we asked Denise Vigil what guests can expect when the doors open to The Friar’s Fork Restaurant and Sanctuary on Fourth Street in Alamosa. Here’s part of what she had to say:
“Just even the word restaurant, it comes from the root to restore. Way back when people were starting to serve food to people on a public scale, they were serving travelers and people who were on pilgrimages and going from town to town and it was a place to stop and to be restored, restored from your journey.
“And whatever your journey is in this day and age, whether it’s just a little restoration from your weekend because it was hard, from your work, your day-to-day life, I want it to be a place where people can come and they expect to be in an environment that has a lot of love.”
Listen to the full episode as she reminisces about her own upbringing, the meaning of having a meal, and the intention of her journey that led to The Friar’s Fork.
5. Jocelyn Russell, the famed wildlife artist from Alamosa, will be in the San Luis Valley this week for a presentation Sunday at Society Hall. Russell and the Woman’s Citizenship Club are hosting “Sculpting a Moment,” Russell’s journey through the Secretariat project and installation in Lexington, KY. The event begins at 4 p.m. Russell and the Woman’s Citizenship Club will also discuss “Into Thin Air” Cranes in Flight monument that Jocelyn Russell Fine Art and the Woman’s Citizenship Club are collaborating on. Here’s our earlier story on the project.
6. “True Servant’s Heart.” That’s how David Osborn, SLV regional field manager for the Colorado Division of Homeland Security & Emergency Management, recognized Harold Joe Cordova, the Manassa firefighter and president of the Conejos County Fire Board, who while responding to a call on May 1. Cordova was 83, and had served for 65 years with the volunteer Manassa Fire Department. Gov. Jared Polis ordered flags to be lowered to half-staff on all public buildings from sunrise until sunset on Friday, May 6, 2022, in his honor. Cordova is survived by his wife, children, and grandchildren.
7. Irene Taylor was humble as can be in accepting the Colorado Tourism Office Outstanding Frontline Tourism Worker Award for the San Luis Valley region. The assistant manager for the Days Inn said check-ins have stayed steady throughout the COVID pandemic, and that she’s always happy to recommend places to eat and attractions to see to guests. The thing she said Alamosa is missing the most and a request she often gets: A local steakhouse. Read more on Irene and the award HERE.
8. Construction Zone: US 160 in East Monte Vista
What work is being done? This week crews will continue construction to upgrade curb and ADA ramps and sidewalks at various locations along US 160 in Monte Vista and on CO 15. A 12-foot width restriction is in place for oversize loads from Monday thru Friday, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Speed reduction to 25 mph can be expected as motorists come into Monte Vista. Flagging Personnel will be onsite due to alternating single lane closures. Expect up to 10 minute traffic delays. These closures and delays of US 160 will be in effect between April 2022 and July 2022. Work will take place during daylight hours, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday. Night work and weekend work are not anticipated at this time.
TEN. Weekend Photographs:
It was a “Whoa” moment for Creative Citizen Madeleine Ahlborn. She captured the clouds over the Sangre de Cristo Mountains on Friday evening. (top photo)
The Sangre de Cristo Heritage Area’s Cinco de Mayo Block Party on Friday evening got people dancing along San Juan Avenue in Downtown Alamosa. The event drew crowds that also got a taste of Visit Alamosa’s First Fridays downtown merchants promotions. First Fridays will be back on June 3.
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