Summer may be winding down, but it will be a while yet until the event calendar in Rio Blanco County quiets down.
Starting Friday of this week in Rangely is the four-day Septemberfest fall celebration, which takes place over the Labor Day weekend, wrapping up with a busy Monday of fun.
Septemberfest is when the folks from all around Rangely put on a great show with a variety of activities for those of all ages.
The fun begins Friday at 5 p.m. with the only activity that day being the Crocodile Reef at the Rangely Junior/Senior High school auditorium.
Saturday’s activities include: a Fantasy Canyon Tour, the Fast, Flat and Free 5K run,the Blue Mountain Half Marathon, a bike rally, a “Meet The Tank” session when the public can tour “The Tank” sound studio, a chili cook-off contest, a day in the park sponsored by the WRBM Recreation and Parks District, a bench press contest, and the sixth annual Rock ‘N’ Bull Rodeo, starting at 7 p.m. at Columbine Fairgrounds, featuring the CNCC rodeo team.
Sunday’s action begins a bit later in the day with the annual ice cream social, which runs 1:15 to 2:45 at the Rangely Museum. As the sun begins to set, the focus moves up to the old Parkview Elementary site for the Muddy Dip and Dash obstacle course at 5:30 and the Muddy Tug of War at 7:30 p.m. This is one of the favorite events as the Rangely Fire Department turns the site into a mud bog for the obstacle course for kids of all ages—from the young in age to the not-so-young in age but young in spirit, as well as the mud tug of war.
Monday is the concluding day of the event, and starts with the Fireman’s Pancake Breakfast, which was worth getting up for last year. That runs from 6:30 to 8:30 a.m. at the Rangely Fire Station.
The Star-Spangled Parade begins at 9 a.m., running down Main Street, and that is followed by the chaos and fun in Elks Park with the huge annual crafts fair and car show—an event not to be missed if you have never been, and it is something most folks don’t miss even if they have been going for years.
I find it one of the most enjoyable single-day events of the year in Rio Blanco County. I’m still looking for that woman and her husband who sold tamales and enchiladas to die for at Elks Park. Those events in the park run from right after the parade until about 5 p.m. There is also the barbecue in the park running from 1 to 3 p.m., then the Duck Race wraps up the afternoon from 5 to 6 p.m. at the Green River Bridge.
The Septemberfest activities are wrapped up Monday evening with the free concert, featuring Charley Jenkins, at 6:30 p.m. at the Elks Park Softball Field.
It is an exhausting four days if you try to take in everything, but even taking in a couple of the events each day makes for a fun time.
I won’t say it is an elite happening, but it does seem to bring out the best in the folks of Rangely. They take part, they enjoy the festivities and, of course, while visitors and out-of-towners are most welcome, it has the atmosphere of a Rangely homecoming event, possibly the only time of year everyone in Rangely sees all their friends and neighbors.
And, I must add, they do make visitors and out-of-towners feel most welcome. It is just a fun time had by some fun people.
Friday night’s performance of the Polynesian Fire Dancers at the Meeker Town Park was especially nice for the folks in town.
The event wasn’t put on by the Meeker Chamber of Commerce nor was it put on by the ERBM Recreation and Parks District.
The hour-long program, featuring two Polynesian (South Pacific) performers, was sponsored by Flora Bella florists in Meeker to show appreciation to the store’s customers.
Many folks in Meeker—I would estimate between 125 and 150 people in attendance—really appreciated the show, which demonstrated native dances from the islands of Samoa, Fiji, Hawaii and dances and war chants of New Zealand’s Maori people.
These two dancers, proficient at native and fire dancing, were talented, entertaining and went out of their way to get audience members involved—calling upon a few of our Meeker locals to shrug off embarrassment to try their hands at the hula and Maori war dances and chants.
Residents gathered around the gazebo at Meeker Town Park and just had a fun, relaxing time while the younger kids ran and played around the park.
Thanks, Flora Bella. A good time was had by all, it seemed.
I hate to print these next few words because we have had such a mild and wet early summer, a warm but dry and brief summer, and the monsoon rains are back at it, it seems, until at least after Labor Day.
But, gulp, fall and winter are rapidly approaching. We know that is so because the hunters are showing up for archery to be followed by four rifle seasons.
Yes, it is that time!
We can hope that fall slows its entry and that winter starts late like it did last year, but it cannot be denied that even a few—really not very many—of the aspens and other trees in town and on the upper slopes around the county are already starting or getting ready to shed their leaves, which, in some cases, have already turned gold and red.
I’m not trying to hurry the cold nor snowy weather by any means. I like the spring, summer and early fall much better than the cold or frigid late fall and winter.
It is inevitable, however. It would be nice to hold back for another month or two.
After three relatively wet but mild winters, what do you think it will do this year?
It could remain relatively warm and snow free, leaving the hunters having to search way up high for the big trophies. Or it could start snowing early and get cold so the animals will come down to the lower elevations. That will bring the deer and elk on down to where it might be a bit easier to harvest a nice trophy.
It seems that most folks would just as soon have another relatively mild winter like we have had for the past three years.
On the other hand, the deer and elk harvests have reportedly not been very outstanding, which has kept an abundance of the animals up high, which cuts down on the harvest percentages, but which sure does wonders for the conditions of the area herds.
Only about one week to go before the Denver Broncos open their regular season against the Baltimore Ravens. That is a good thing.
It has been tough to weather these nine months since the Broncos last played, but if the three preseason exhibition games have shown anything so far, it is that the Bronco defense is pretty stout, the running backs are pretty good runners behind a fairly solid offensive line, and that the veterans are pretty happy to see the start of the regular season.
It seems that most of the veterans won’t be starting or seeing any action tonight as the Broncos play their last preseason game.
Part of me likes the idea of making certain the starters aren’t hurt in a preseason game, but the other part would like to see Peyton Manning get a few more plays under his belt as his timing hasn’t been all that good nor has he had very many plays this preseason.
Anyway, let’s hope the Broncos can get past the season-opening Ravens this year and soar on through the regular season. It would certainly be nice to see the Broncos accomplish this year what they didn’t do last year.
After all, Peyton isn’t going to be around much longer.