Today’s Daily Report photo by Ryan Michelle Scavo
SLV’s Armando Valdez to serve
as USDA Rural Development for Colorado
Armando Valdez, board member with the Rio Grande Water Conservation District and business professor at Adams State University, is being tapped by President Biden to serve as Colorado State Director for USDA Rural Development.
Valdez served as executive chair for the USDA FSA for five years under the Obama Administration. In that position, he helped
administer the Farm Bill, execute farm policy, and manage other federal programs to support farmers and ranchers, according to his biography. In 2007, he created Valdez Land & Livestock to continue his family’s farm operation.
Biden is also appointing Kent Peppler – a fourth-generation farmer at Peppler Farms in Weld County – to serve as Colorado state executive director of the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA).
“From food production to rural development, agriculture is central to Colorado’s economy,” said U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet of Colorado. “As Colorado producers, Kent and Armando have a deep understanding of the important role USDA plays in our state, especially our rural communities. With their personal experience operating farms and their background at USDA, Kent and Armando are exactly the leaders Colorado’s agriculture economy needs. As a member of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry, I look forward to working with them to support our farmers, ranchers, and rural communities in Colorado.”
News from Cumbres & Toltec
2022 Schedule released
It’s “full steam ahead” for the Cumbres & Toltec Scenic (C&TS) Railroad. Only weeks after concluding the 2021 season, the C&TS has released its schedule for its 2022 season and is now accepting reservations. The railroad has never finalized its schedule and opened reservations so early. Typically, schedules are announced in the first quarter of the year.
The C&TS 2022 kicks off on June 11, 2022. The later opening addresses the variable weather on Cumbres Pass and ensures a more pleasant outdoor experience for passengers. The season will run through October 23, 2022.
The new 2022 schedule includes:
- Full Excursion Trips travel by train the full line between Chama, New Mexico, and Antonito, Colorado, and includes a one-hour bus ride. These trips are called the Antonito All Aboard and the Chama All Aboard and include lunch and motorcoach service. Adult ticket prices start at $135 for summer departures and $155 for the fall season.
- HalfLimited Trips travel half the C&TS line from either Chama or Antonito to the mid-way point of Osier Station and back. Lunch is included and the trips are called the Chama Limited or the Antonito Limited, are solely via train, with no bus service. Adult ticket prices start at $115 for summer departures and $135 for the fall season.
- Short Express Options are three-and-a-half hour excursions. The Cumbres Express departs from Cumbres Pass at 11:10 am, heads to Osier for lunch service (included in the price) and returns to Cumbres at 2:45 p.m. Adult tickets start at $110. On Fridays in July, the Chama Express will depart Chama at 1 p.m. and travel to Cumbres Pass, the highest operational railroad pass in the country and back to Chama by 3:30 p.m. Lunch is not included. Adult ticket prices start at $90, children 6-12 are $45 and children 2-5 are $25.
- Special Trips include the monthly 168 Brunch Special, the 168 Dinner Special, the Geology Train, which will run twice this year and the annual Wildflower (Botany) Train. In addition, there will be a special photography charter and Moonlight Dinner Train Trip available only to members of the Friends of the Cumbres & Toltec. Tickets prices vary depending on the Special Trip. See website for more information.
To reward passengers who book early, the C&T is offering 15 percent off Coach seating only through December 31, 2021, with the discount code HOLIDAY22. Offer excludes gift certificates and is not valid with any other discount code.
Additionally, the C&TS will offer a one-day Cyber Monday Sale with 15 percent off all classes of service (Coach, Deluxe, Parlor). The deal is only available on Monday, November 29, 2021, and can be booked online or by calling ticket reservationists at 888-286-2737. This offer excludes gift certificates and is not valid with any other discount code.
To book a trip and for complete information, visit: www.cumbrestoltec.com or call 1-888-286-2737.
C&TS Enjoys Record-Setting Revenue in 2021
The Cumbres & Toltec set a new record for revenue in 2021 thanks to operational efficiencies introduced last year. The number of passengers who rode the railroad in 2021 did not meet the record-setting 2019 passenger numbers but was nearly to pre-pandemic levels, with only an 11 percent difference.
“We are extremely pleased with our 2021 season performance. We wondered what the lingering impacts of the pandemic would be and were concerned about the delays in opening our full schedule,” Gibbs noted. “But rail fans returned in force to support the C&TS and enjoy a steam railroad ride along the Colorado-New Mexico border. Despite the challenges, it was an outstanding season.”
Alamosa Thanksgiving Day
trash pickup schedule
In observance of Thanksgiving, the Alamosa trash schedule will be as follows:
Yard Waste – Last day for collection will be Monday Nov. 29.
Residential Route – Thursday Nov. 25 will be collected Friday Nov. 26. Friday Nov. 26 will be collected Monday Nov. 29.
Commercial Route – Thursday Nov. 25 will be collected Wednesday Nov. 24.
Recycling Center will be closed Thursday November 25.
Questions? Contact the Public Works Department at 719-589-6631.