Snowy sunset

I’m back here reporting-out about my work as your mayor, after taking a brief break to celebrate Christmas and the New Year. It’s always reenergizing for me to have family visits during the holidays. Feeling renewed, I am ready to take on the challenges and opportunities of 2022. Two weeks in, there’s plenty of both. Read on...

One challenge is the Omicron variant of the Covid-19 virus. Highly contagious, Omicron is spreading rapidly around the world and is not sparing Larimer County. As of Wednesday, January 5, 2022 the seven-day case rate for the county was 1,090 cases per 100k people. Far exceeding the previous seven-day high of 548.2 cases per 100k attained on November 19, 2020. You know the drill—wear masks when indoors, get vaccinated and boosted. The Town Board will meet via Zoom until case counts drop significantly. Weekly updates from Larimer County Health Department will help us determine when it is safe to return to in-person Town Board meetings. Information about meetings of the Board is available at the Town’s website.

Another challenge is the Marshall Wildfire that recently swept through parts of Boulder County. The devastation is extensive. Recovery will be a long ordeal. Members of the Estes community, no strangers to disaster, are stepping up to help our neighbors in the valley. A heartfelt thankyou to all who are providing temporary housing, food, clothing, expertise, support and more.

Now for an opportunity. The Town of Estes Park is holding a mail-ballot only municipal election on Tuesday, April 5, 2022 to fill three trustee seats on the Board of Trustees. If you, or someone you know desires to represent the townspeople of Estes Park, then please stop by the Town Clerk’s office to pick up an information packet. It’ll provide information about candidate eligibility, nomination instructions, a nomination petition, instructions about the Fair Campaign Practices Act, expectations of time commitment and the role of a Board member.

And yet another opportunity. Quite likely you’ve noticed that despite the two recent snowfalls, concern about dry conditions here remains widespread. Sharing that concern and trying to do my part, I made a few unofficial queries about remedying the situation. Well, one loquacious respondent, who shall remain unnamed, after assuring me that snow will continue to bless the Estes Valley, seemed quite promising. When I asked how he knows this, he said the valley is the purview of numerous snow gods, including: Ullr – Norse God of Snow, Skai – Norse Ski Goddess, Khione - Greek Goddess of snow, Heikki Lunta – Finnish God of snow and Beira – Queen of Winter Gaelic Mythology. Alas, when I eagerly asked to meet with one or all of them or their representatives, he demurred. That’s too bad, I thought, would’ve been one heck of a Zoom session!

Two weeks in, the only thing I know for sure about 2022 is that we are better together. And that because we are, despite what may come, Estes Park will always be a terrific place to live, work and grow.

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