Those were the Days
5 years ago
Week of July 24, 2008
Eagle officials were working on a series of immediate traffic improvements to help ease gridlock along Eby Creek Road. The steps included green arrow signals at the Chambers Avenue stoplight and signal modifications at the westbound Interstate 70 off ramp. Town Engineer Tom Gosiorowski noted that the long-term solution for the problem would be construction of a series of roundabouts along the roadway, but predicted that work was years away.
During an often heated meeting with the Eagle County Commissioners, local equestrians protested a plan to open up the Eagle River Center to other uses during the winter months. Horse riders protested, arguing that the facility was their only indoor practice option and said opening it up to other recreational uses would actually push them out of the facility.
Locals were treated to a welcome and familiar sight — Ed Oyler driving a team of draft horses around town. For years, Oyler’s team of English Shire horses named Andrew and Fergie were beloved equine members of the community. However, Fergie fell ill and died in 2007 and her brother, Andrew, found a new lease on life with a Glenwood Springs boy who had been recovering from cancer. Eventually, Oyler decided he was ready for another team and his search led him to Tick and Tock, a pair of Percheron horses that had been raised and trained by an Amish farmer in Missouri.
A moose was spotted roaming around the upper forks along Brush Creek.
10 years ago
Week of July 24, 2003
A flood of national media descended on Eagle after Los Angeles Lakers basketball star Koby Bryant was charged with sexual assault for an incident that happened while he was staying at Cordillera.
Vandals caused an estimated $2,000 worth of damage after breaking into the Gypsum Trap Club. The incident happened just hours after the club hosted a successful turkey shoot that drew more than 40 participants.
A series of electrical storms had local firefighters chasing daily smoke reports.
Eagle’s Hailey Vest was playing the lead role of Dorothy in the Vail Valley Children’s Theater production of “The Wizard of Oz.”
Columbine Market took overall honors in the Gypsum Daze parade. Antonio Murillo chowed down on 32 peppers to win the men’s division of the event’s jalapeno eating contest. Niki Dondero ate 30 peppers to win the women’s division. Will Dutmer, Woody Lich and Sara Belluchi tied for first place in the children’s division.
20 years ago
Week of July 22, 1993
Eagle County District Court Judge William Jones ruled that residents of the El Jebel area could proceed with an incorporation election.
The town of Eagle was looking at plans for a 197-apartment development located along the Northbank parcel, north of U.S. Highway 6 and just west of Eby Creek Road.
A man suspected of burglarizing a store in Aspen was apprehended after a high speed car chase in Eagle.
Gypsum imposed restrictions that limited residents to watering their yards for only one hour, every other day. The town was looking to expand its water sources.
The state of Colorado named a 2.5-mile nature trail northeast of Radium along Backtail Creek after late game warden Walt Woodward.
Gypsum got a mention from Jay Leno during his Tonight show monologue. Leno read a newspaper article detailing how a town resident had called the cops to report that his house had been burglarized. He told the officer he was missing about $200 in cash and some jewelry, but he also expressed concern that the thieves might come back because they hadn’t found his marijuana stash.
30 years ago
Week of July 28, 1983
Despite an offer for free land and free water and sewer tap fees from the Gypsum Town Council, the Western Eagle County Metropolitan Recreation District announced it would proceed with construction of a swimming pool in Eagle.
State Representative Scott McInnis pushed for more water storage projects in a speech before the Eagle Valley Chamber of Commerce.
Eagle Town Manager Susan Sanfilippo told the town board that an effort to hammer out a cooperative water service agreement with Adam’s Rib was running into some roadblocks because the HBE Corp. kept trying to change the terms of the agreement.
A 20-member cast was in rehearsals for a Vail Institute production of the musical “Pippin.” The production’s director was Kelli Murphy.
Bob and Shirley Shelton sent a terse letter to the town of Eagle and forwarded a copy to the Enterprise. “We are paying our regular quarterly water bill much against our better judgment,” the Sheltons wrote. “The water was absolutely worthless for human use. It clogged up our water heater and if we had used the dishwasher and washing machine it would have ruined them.”
40 years ago
Week of July 26, 1973
Eagle Town Manager Chuck Shafer announced that construction of a public swimming pool was the community’s top objective. The town’s goal was to build an indoor pool that would be used year around, possibly located at Town Park or at the old brick elementary school on Broadway.
A 30-year-old Longmont woman and her 1-year-old daughter were missing after their car plunged into the Colorado River near Dotsero.
Eagle County Extension Agent Les Jeremiah warned locals that warmer weather meant there was a higher risk of rabies.
Berniece McKelvey anounced a grand opening party at Harrsions. The event included a free buffet with special entertainment by a group called the Decibels, “playing for your dancing pleasure.”
Ira Bindley caught a 35-pound Ono while on a fishing trip in Hawaii.
50 years ago
Week of July 25, 1963
Dick Lowe, railroad section foreman at Bond, narrowly escaped injury from a stray .22 bullet. He was working on a section of track two miles west of Bond when a bullet whizzed by and went through the gloves that were hanging from his hip pocket. Lowe had the hole in his gloves as proof of his adventure.
A 15-year-old Toponas boy, Marvin Mitchell, died while swimming with a friend in the Colorado River near the confluence of Yarmony Creek.
Larry Bagley, Tom Harris and Mort Doll won the Wild Cow Milking contest at the Little Britches Rodeo in Cedaredge.
Guests at Billy Beasley’s 9th birthday party were Biff Long, Frankie Adams, Frankie Bowman, Mike and Miles Collett, Mike Gregg and Kent Wilson.
60 years ago
Week of July 21, 1953
Eagle resident Mrs. C.C. Black won a $5 prize from McCall’s magazine by using a McCall’s pattern to create a stenciled circle skirt for her granddaughter, Linda Wagner.
Heavy rains and electrical storms were reported in Eagle, on the Castle Ranch and along Milk Creek.
Rumors of a miner’s strike at the New Jersey Zinc Company operation at Gilman prompted a meeting between union officers and officials from the Empire Zinc Company.
Eagle County Old Settlers Day was planned for Aug. 1 at the Gypsum school. A dinner, meeting and dance were planned.
70 years ago
Week of July 23 1943
The community was mourning the death of Theodore Stremme, 71. He was a life-long valley resident who ran a general store in Gypsum and also served as the town’s mayor and postmaster.
Army Sgt. Jim Nimon of Eagle was stationed with the 45th Division in Sicily.
Sgt. Herman Newquist of Gypsum completed a course on aircraft engines and was headed to a position as a specialized member of an Army Air Force combat crew.
Eagle businessmen C. Ray Bass and George Carlow were leaving for military service. Bass, a manager for the Independent Lumber Company, joined the SeeBees and Carlow enlisted in the Navy.
The Home Demonstration Clubs of Eagle and Brush Creek offered instruction for fruit and vegetable canning.
80 years ago
Week of July 28, 1933
Local cattle rancher Jim Warren died tragically during a fishing trip on Fool’s Peak. His foot became entangled in a lasso and his horse took off and dragged him to death.
The first railroad carload of lettuce and peas for the season was shipped from the Edwards station. Rancher Lewis Fenno of Squaw Creek provided most of the lettuce, which was sold at a price of $1 per crate. Peas were priced at two cents per pound.
Postal officials were looking for McCoy Postmaster Walter J. Moran, who had not be seen since July 4. The missing postmaster had a habit of leaving work for several days or up to a week without notice, but this long unaccounted for absence was raising concerns.
A change in the course of the Colorado River had created a triangular shaped pool on the Quinlan property. The new natural amenity featured a sand beach because it quickly became a popular swimming hole. As many as 50 locals at one time were using the pool to enjoy a dip in the water.