Organizers ask Meeker trustees to chip in for Smoking River Pow Wow

MEEKER I Smoking River Pow Wow committee chair Lynn Lockwood updated Meeker’s Board of Trustees about new developments in the planning of the second annual powwow, and asked the “tribe of Meeker” to match a $2,000 donation from the Utes.
“I am here to be expensive again,” Lockwood said. “Our corporate sponsorship dropped way back and some of our local people are tapering off. We got a nice grant from Colorado Council on the Arts that gives us a lot of credibility. We received $2,000 from the Mountain Ute tribe this year. The Northern Ute Tribal Council donated $2,000,” Lockwood reported.
“These are the White River Utes. They are giving us roughly 1,000 pounds of buffalo meat that we’ll use for a traditional feast on Saturday afternoon instead of the pancake breakfast. They will be using the skull from the buffalo in their Sun Dance ceremony.”
Lockwood said the donations are an honor for the powwow, and the town.
Mayor Mandi Etheridge responded to the request, which comes back to back with a request from the Meeker Chamber of Commerce for $2,500.
“At the last meeting the chamber requested $2,500 for their flower pot project. I’m going to echo my comments to them. With such large requests for a community donation, I’d like to get some information to see where we are mid-year (with the community development fund).”
Etheridge said she believed the board would have difficulty approving such a large request when the park is being used free of charge, and the town has already donated the necessary dirt work for the powwow, and sponsored last year’s lighting. But, she added, she would be willing to consider a sponsorship like those available to business and industry.
“As the local government, I would feel good being an Eagle Plume sponsor. For us to match that donation would speak volumes toward reconciliation between the Utes and the town of Meeker, the two governmental agencies,” Etheridge said.
You can be charged with DUI on a bicycle. Or on horseback, according to Meeker Chief of Police Bob Hervey. The police department, working with the Colorado State Patrol and the Rio Blanco County Sheriff’s Office, had a combined total of 15 arrests over the Fourth of July weekend.
The arrests mirrored other undesirable activity during the holiday weekend.
Public Works Superintendent Russell Overton said, “The parks had more trash in them since I’ve worked for the town. One trash can had eight cases of beer in it.”
Two streetlights were shot out at the park, four sign posts were pulled completely out of the ground and seven street signs were reported missing. In addition, there were some reports of private property damage in the same area where the signs were missing.
In other council business:
Town Planner Anna Smith said as of July 7 there were no letters of interest submitted for the vacancy on the town’s planning commission, and encouraged anyone interested in applying to do so.
Town Administrator Sharon Day said the town is applying for a public grant available through the stimulus program. The Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Department will be used for the purchase of additional police department equipment. The grant requires no match funding from the town.
Day added, “If we comply with all the steps, we will receive the funding.”

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