Wildscaping, Open Space Versus Unmaintained, Chemical Versus Organic, Golf Tournament, and an Early Tourism Event

June 17, 2021

Golden Eye Candy – Joyce Davell – Smoky Sunrise over Castle Rock – click to enlarge

Virtual Events

7:30-8:30PM Golden Young Professionals Monthly Membership Meeting @ On Tap Credit Union
8:40-9:35AM Silver Sneakers Classic
10AM Mid-Morning Meditation
10-11:30AM Virtual: Google Docs
10:10-11:05AM All Levels Yoga
10:15AM Preschool Time with the Library
11:40AM-12:35PM Silver Sneakers Circuit
3-5PM Hard Times Writing Workshop
4:30-6PM Office Hours – Zoning Code Rewrite
5-9PM Bike Night – Ride-in Movie @ Avalanche Harley Davidson
6-7PM Qs and Brews Trivia
6:30-8:30PM Golden Women in Business Table Talk

Real World Events


Birds of Golden by Joe Wrona – click to enlarge

10-11AM Outdoor Story Time @ Golden History Museum
6PM Fun Run @ Runners High

6PM Garden Talk @ Golden Community Garden
Wildscaping 101: Native Plants for Birds – Go ahead and get to WILDSCAPING! Understanding the complexities of wild bird diets will help attract a more diverse collection of birds to your backyard landscape.  Utilizing native plant choices, Denver Audubon will guide you through the process of designing a wildlife habitat, including the potential to certify through the Habitat Hero program offered through our partner organization, Audubon Rockies. 

7PM Parks, Recreation and Museums Advisory Board Meeting
Tonight’s agenda includes “Bachman” and “DeLong Organic Park” as topics. There are no additional details, but there are many public comments regarding the Bachman property. Apparently there is some intention to install a sign and “increase activity” on that parcel. Several people who live near the property think activity should not be increased until there’s a park plan and the city is prepared to do maintenance on the park. The nearby residents say the property is often used as an off-leash dog park and that dog waste is a problem. They also mentioned broken bottles, crushed cans, and a dead raccoon floating in a creek. They don’t want to attract more people until the City is prepared to maintain the property. Some of the neighbors are hoping that the property, which is frequented by elk and other wildlife, can be preserved as City open space, rather than developing it as a park.

“DeLong Organic Park” probably refers to a citizens’ campaign that we use DeLong Park–which is in the very first stages of construction–as a pilot project for chemical-free landscape maintenance–no herbicides or pesticides. Learn more about this approach. Some of the neighbors are concerned that without the standard treatments, it will become weedy and send weed seeds into their yards. See tonight’s meeting packet for more information….

LIVE MUSIC:
4PM Bike Night at Dirty Dogs Roadhouse
6PM Jonathan Browning Acoustix @ Buffalo Rose (Sky Bar Stage – outdoor patio)
6PM Mike Heuer at Golden Moon Speakeasy
6PM Bill McKay Band @ New Terrain Brewing
6PM Open Pick Night at Over Yonder Brewing
7PM Big Time Rascals @ Columbine Cafe
8PM Karaoke at Rock Rest Lodge


Play Ball!

Golden Rotary Club is having their annual Golf Tournament next Monday. Join them! It’s a great opportunity to play the Rolling Hills course, enjoy some fine food, and meet some great people. Learn more…


Golden History Moment


Promotional postcard showing the automobile road to Lookout Mountain – click to enlarge

106 Years Ago
The June 17, 1915 Colorado Transcript announced that 1,000 autos carrying 5,000 people would form a parade to drive through Denver’s new Mountain Parks. The parade of cars would come through Golden before heading up the Lariat Loop Trail. This event was being organized by the Denver Motor Club, which promoted the use of automobiles, the wonders of the (auto-accessible) Mountain Parks, and tourism in general. They planned to have photographers and videographers stationed along the route, recording the big event so they could send the visual record of the event all over the country.


Postcard showing automobile tourists enjoying a Denver Mountain Park – click to enlarge

Showing a peculiar grasp of math, the following week’s Transcript reported that 800 autos carrying 500 people showed up for the parade. Some of the cars must have run empty and used driverless technology.


The Golden Transcript (originally called the Colorado Transcript) has been publishing since 1866. The Golden History Museum has been working on digitizing the historic issues. You’ll find old Transcripts online at coloradohistoricnewspapers.org.


COVID Information

COVID Vaccine Appointments
State of Colorado: Where You Can Get Vaccinated
Jeffco Public Health Vaccine Call Center: 303-239-7000
State Vaccine Hotline: 1-877-268-2926.

Golden Testing Sites
Mines COVID Testing | Jeffco Fairgrounds COVID Testing

More Public Health References
Sign up for exposure notifications | CDC | Colorado | Jefferson County | City of Golden

Closing the Boarding House Loopholes and Killing Bandits in 1868

June 16, 2021

Golden Eye Candy – Robert Saieg – Late Evening, Mt. Zion – click to enlarge

COVID Updates


% of Jeffco residents (12+) who have received at least one shot–source

NOTE: After today, the County will only be updating these numbers ONCE A WEEK, on MONDAY, so I will post the new stats each TUESDAY.

Jefferson County Case Summary:
Cases in Jeffco – Monday: 48,521 | Tuesday: 48,521 (unchanged)
Deaths in Jeffco – Monday: 844 | Tuesday: 844 (unchanged)
Currently Hospitalized in Jeffco – Monday: 33 | Tuesday: 36 (+3)
Recovered – Monday: 47,386 | Tuesday: 47,421 (+35)
Known Cases in Golden – Thursday: 2005 | Monday: 2016 (+11)

COVID Vaccine Appointments
State of Colorado: Where You Can Get Vaccinated
Jeffco Public Health Vaccine Call Center: 303-239-7000
State Vaccine Hotline: 1-877-268-2926.

Golden Testing Sites
Mines COVID Testing | Jeffco Fairgrounds COVID Testing

More Public Health References
Sign up for exposure notifications | CDC | Colorado | Jefferson County | City of Golden


Virtual Events

8:30-9:30AM Virtual Power Training
8:40-9:35AM Tai Chi
9AM Golden Walks – Wednesday Morning Celebrating Life
10:15AM Baby Time with the Library
12:30PM Golden Women in Business Book Club
2PM Cliffhangers Club
3-5PM Hard Times Writing Workshop
5:30-7PM Golden Orators Toastmasters
6PM Golden Young Professionals Book Club
7-8PM Summer Challenge – Art for Teens


Real World Events

7:30AM Golden Young Professionals

7:30AM Citizen Budget Advisory Committee Meeting
CBAC will hear about the City’s IT/Fiber plan, how the City might spend the $5.2 million it receives from the American Rescue Plan, and the 2021-2022 Budget Process.

6:30PM Planning Commission Study Session
The Planning Commission will consider a request to rezone the Golden Hills Mobile Home Park (map) from R2 to PUD (Planned Unit Development) that will establish “mobile homes” as the principal residential use on the property in order to better ensure the long term preservation of the mobile home park.

They will then review a proposed code change “related to residential allocations for boarding houses, a new definition of affordable housing unit, and additional requirements for reapportionment requests related to affordable housing units.”

Finally, they will discuss “the idea of a potential code change that would enact a new requirement for the merger of nonconforming lots in Golden. This would first require City Council to indicate whether or not they would support a Commission investigation, discussion and possible recommendation concerning this topic.”

LIVE MUSIC:
4PM Chrispy at Mountain Toad Brewing


Golden History Moment


I’m not sure of the source, but this picture is always used by people telling the story of “Heartless Ed Franklin” – click to enlarge

Throughout the 1930s, the Colorado Transcript ran a series called UNWRITTEN HISTORY. In it, they published memories of long-term townsfolk. They paid $1 for a good story. Since the stories were based on old memories and didn’t suffer the constraints of absolute accuracy, they made for good reading. One story, published on May 1, 1930 was provided by G.E. Dollison.

This was the tale of three bandits–Franklin, Musgrove, and one whose name was lost in the mists of time. The three were in Jack Hill’s saloon (now part of the Buffalo Rose) when a posse entered. The bandits ran out the back door, shooting as they left. One of the shots killed the bartender. The posse eventually caught up with Musgrove and the unnamed guy “in the bottoms along Clear creek somewhere east of Ford St..” Mr. Unnamed was killed in the fight. In this version of the story, Musgrove “was immediately hanged to a convenient tree.”


This photo from the Golden History Museum collection shows the Overland Hotel, where Franklin was killed. – click to enlarge

The third bandit–Ed Franklin–was discovered in bed, in his room in the Overland Hotel (which stood on the site of the Buffalo Rose). His guns were out of reach, so he opened his shirt, pointed to his heart, and told them to “shoot me here, so there won’t be any doubt about it.” That was the story, as recalled by Mr. Dollison in 1930.

I searched for the newspaper accounts written at the time the events occurred, finding them in the November 25, 1868 Colorado Transcript. The story as Dollison recalled it was basically accurate, though there were a few pertinent details missing.

One might wonder why Ed Franklin would go upstairs to bed after his gang had shot a bartender. The testimony at the inquest explained that he was drunk. His guns weren’t “out of reach–” there were no guns in the room. The deputies were trying to put handcuffs on him and take him into custody, but there was much swearing and wrestling as he resisted arrest. The part where he instructed them to shoot him in the heart did appear in the testimony, and one of the deputies obliged.

The Transcript’s comment was “As Franklin was known to be a desperado of the worst stamp, and was doubtless guilty of the crimes charged upon him, no one here regrets his death, but many think that three armed officers should have been able to hand-cuff one unarmed, naked man, and given the law a chance at him.”

The way the story was told in 1930, it seemed that Musgrove was captured near Ford and Clear Creek and hanged on the spot. In fact, he was taken to a jail in Denver. From there, “a vigilance committee of fifty of the citizens of Denver, among them some of the most respectable people, proceeded to the jail, took the notorious Musgrove from the officers in charge and hung him on the Larimer street bridge over Cherry Creek.” (Colorado Transcript, November 25, 1868)


The Golden Transcript (originally called the Colorado Transcript) has been publishing since 1866. The Golden History Museum has been working on digitizing the historic issues. You’ll find old Transcripts online at coloradohistoricnewspapers.org.

How to Spend a Lodging Tax, Expanding Pot Sales, How to Spend $5 Million, Tom Schweich Territory, and Tubing Deaths on Clear Creek

June 15, 2021

Golden Eye Candy – Patrick Klein – Progress report on the Flats – click to enlarge

COVID Updates


% of Jeffco residents (12+) who have received at least one shot–source

Jefferson County Case Summary:
Cases in Jeffco
– Friday: 48,418 | Monday: 48,521 (+103)
Deaths in Jeffco – Friday: 843 | Monday: 844 (+1)
Currently Hospitalized in Jeffco – Friday: 31 | Monday: 33 (+2)
Recovered – Friday: 47,290 | Monday: 47,386 (+96)
Known Cases in Golden – Thursday: 2005 | Monday: 2016 (+11)

COVID Vaccine Appointments
State of Colorado: Where You Can Get Vaccinated
Jeffco Public Health Vaccine Call Center: 303-239-7000
State Vaccine Hotline: 1-877-268-2926.

Golden Testing Sites
Mines COVID Testing | Jeffco Fairgrounds COVID Testing

More Public Health References
Sign up for exposure notifications | CDC | Colorado | Jefferson County | City of Golden


Virtual Events

8AM Golden Merchants Meeting
8:30-9:30AM Virtual Power Training
8:40-9:35AM Tai Chi
9AM Golden Walks – Wednesday Morning Celebrating Life
10:15AM Baby Time with the Library
3-5PM Hard Times Writing Workshop
7-8PM New and Prospective Member Orientation (Colorado Mountain Club)
7PM Personal Locator Beacons and Two-Way Satellite Communication Devices


Real World Events


Native Plants of Golden Colorado – Photos by Tom Schweich and Jen Rutter – Click to enlarge

10-11AM Story and Craft Time @ Colorado Railroad Museum

4PM to closing Tuesdays at the Buffalo Rose:
Prime rib dinner for $25 (while supply lasts).
Dogs are welcome to sit on the patio on Tuesday nights.
79 cent Coors Banquet or Coors Light for Golden locals, students, and service industry workers

6:30PM City Council Regular Business Meeting
Tonight’s consent agenda includes the first reading of an ordinance that would establish a 180 day moratorium on new building permits in R2 and R3 zones. Unless one of the councilors asks to discuss it tonight, it won’t be discussed until July 13th. They will read two proclamations–one for Golden Day, which is June 16th, and one for the 4th of July.

Lodging Tax
They will discuss a proposed lodging tax. Lodging taxes are often considered a “no brainer,” in that residents don’t pay the tax–visitors do. City Staff estimates that a lodging tax of 6% would generate $1.5 million/year to start and would grow from there.

The matter becomes controversial when deciding where the proceeds of the tax should be spent. Theoretically, a tax should be spent on something related to the thing being taxed–like using gasoline taxes to maintain roads. The cultural organizations, which collectively bring more visitors to Golden than the Coors tours do, would like to see the lodging tax dedicated to maintaining our cultural organizations. Affordable housing supporters point out that it takes a lot of lower-income people to maintain a tourism industry, so a lodging tax should pay for affordable housing. Open Space supporters point out that our parks and trails attract people to Golden, so the money should be spent on acquiring and preserving Open Space.

The city is proposing to dedicate 20% of the lodging tax proceeds to “fund additional programs or projects to address the impact from visitors to the community. Such programs or projects could include enhanced maintenance, public safety, parking management, coordination, wayfinding, and other similar uses.” The purpose of the other 80% is much more loosely defined. Tonight’s meeting memo gives a number of example categories, including “park, trail, and open space improvements, community mobility, sustainability, technology enhancements, infrastructure projects, support for cultural arts, food insecurity, and even housing programs and projects.”

Some citizens are concerned about the plan to add such loosely-earmarked money into the city budget; thus leaving them unsure that they’ll get any of the things they want (cultural funding, affordable housing, open space, etc.).

Marijuana Retail Stores in Golden
Council will also discuss changing our regulations to allow retail sales of recreational marijuana. At present, Golden has one medical marijuana dispensary and no recreational marijuana stores.

COVID Restrictions
They will consider rescinding the Emergency Declaration that imposed COVID protection measures such as mask requirements.

Windfall from the Feds
The City Manager and Finance Director will lead a discussion about how we should spend the $5,219,780.36 that we anticipate receiving from the American Rescue Plan Act.

Future Considerations
Finally, Council will consider three proposals for future business. If enough councilors support these ideas, staff will formalize them and add them to a future agenda. The proposals include:

1) an ordinance that would require that beverages offered with kids meals must be healthy (for example water or unflavored milk) (councilors Trout and Fisher).
2) a proposal to name two unnamed city open space parcels after resident Tom Schweich, who has done extensive work on identifying Golden’s native flora and has encouraged preservation of our remaining open space (Councilors Brown, Dale, and Fisher).
3) a proposal to establish a Council Subcommittee to work on Clear Creek Management (Councilors Brown and Fisher).


Golden History Moment

49 Years Ago
The June 15, 1972 Golden Transcript begins by reporting on two deaths in Clear Creek the previous year:

“It was a great idea. A fantastic way to cool off from the sweltering June heat. A real kick for those who had the spunk to try it. How were they to know an afternoon of fun would turn into a nightmarish tragedy?”

The article goes on to describe how three boys tied their inner tubes together. The rope broke, scattering the boys. One hit his head on a rock, was knocked unconscious, and drowned. Another was swept underwater by the current and drowned. The third boy made it to the edge of the Creek and escaped uninjured.

The reporter interviewed several first responders, who were perplexed over how to prevent the deaths that seemed to occur so frequently. “The state has no cut and dried regulations against rafting or tubing.”

“According to law enforcement authorities, rafting and tubing is illegal, but the guidelines are so fuzzy they often conflict. For the most part authorities rely on boating regulations to prevent tubing and rafting on rivers. These cover safety equipment required for vessels such as life jackets, horns, fire extinguishers, paddle, etc.”

An Assistant District Attorney for Jefferson County said there should be clearly defined laws. “We’ve been complaining about it for three or four years.”

The article describes Golden High School’s rafting program, led by teachers Dewain Wood and Dave Bachman. Mr. Wood described the training they provided and the safety precautions they used, including mandatory life jackets. “His advice to Clear Creek rafters or tubers was ‘Don’t do it.’ The water is too shallow, yet deep enough to hide rocks.” He concluded by saying “Tubing is great fun on Friday night at the Golden swimming pool, but a real hazard on a fast river such as Clear Creek.”



Tubers – Dave Powers, 2016 – click to enlarge

More Recently
Golden opened the Clear Creek Whitewater Park in 1998, which has attracted far more tubers. We still don’t require life jackets., but for the past few years, the City has restricted tubers when the flow reaches 900 cubic feet per second (CFS). We still lose a person or two most years, but we would probably lose more without the restriction.

7-21-17
After multiple CPR attempts, a 48-year-old woman was pronounced dead in Golden Friday. This came after she flipped off her tube and went underwater in Clear Creek. KDVR report

8-14-17
Amber Raye Presson, a 31-year-old from Denver, died on Sunday, August 13, while attempting to rescue her son while tubing on Clear Creek in Golden. Westword Article

5-27-18
James Murray lives in a van near Clear Creek in Golden. He was taking a break from boogie boarding when his friend said he spotted a man floating face-down in the river. Murray ran down stream to the next rapid and jumped in…. Once on shore, an off-duty paramedic started CPR. The 45-year-old man did not survive. KDVR report

7-2-19
A whitewater tuber and a man wading in the creek with friends lost their lives Sunday when they were swept downstream. Patch article

6-17-20
A young woman has died in Jefferson County after being pulled from Clear Creek near Golden. She was 23 years old. CBS report

6-10-21
Authorities decided to enact the restrictions, which extend from the U.S. 6 bridge over Clear Creek, up to and including Vanover Park, after two “scary scenarios” in which two children wading in the river were swept up in the current, Golden’s Deputy Police Chief Joe Harvey said. Neither child was injured, but one boy was pulled over a nearby dam which flowed into private property. Colorado Sun article

Public Comment for tonight’s City Council meeting:

Hello,

My name is Nik White and I live in Golden and own Whitewater Workshop LLC where I teach whitewater kayaking skills and swiftwater rescue classes often in Clear Creek. I’m writing to express my support for the creation of the Clear Creak Management Subcommittee and/or Task Force Proposed Policy (item 12C on the City Council meeting agenda). I was on the working group organized by the city manager to come up with solutions for management of the creek corridor and I feel the work done in that working group is not finished. Some proposed solutions were excellent and should be enacted as soon as possible and other proposed solutions were changed or not implemented by the city.

In particular, the recommendation for a life jacket requirement above certain water levels was removed from the final proposals presented to city council. I think this is a grave mistake on the part of the city that should be revisited as part of the new proposed Subcommittee/Task Force.

On Saturday June 5th the water level was around 700 cubic feet per second which was the closure level proposed by the working group. I was teaching a swiftwater rescue class in the creek near the softball fields. During the class, I personally pulled 3 people out of the water who were not wearing life jackets who were in distress or actively drowning. My class had to spend time transporting people back to the north side of the creek who had fallen in and swam to the south side and couldn’t get back to their cars. A fire department was also teaching a rescue class downstream and mentioned performing multiple rescues as well. I chose to move the second day of my class to another location because I didn’t feel comfortable keeping my students in a situation where they were constantly being called upon to rescue swimmers. 

A life jacket requirement at least at high water as proposed originally to the city manager by their working group would have made those rescues that day unnecessary. 

Please support the creation of the subcommittee/task force to continue the work the working group started.

Thank you,
Nik White.
Resident, Owner Whitewater Workshop LLC


The Golden Transcript (originally called the Colorado Transcript) has been publishing since 1866. The Golden History Museum has been working on digitizing the historic issues. You’ll find old Transcripts online at coloradohistoricnewspapers.org.