Mountain Mix

August 2015 Mountain Mix – The Best of All the Rest

August 7
First Fridays at the Hamill House
Enjoy the season’s final blooms and raise a glass to summer at the last First Friday at the Hamill House Museum, Aug. 7 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Enjoy an old fashioned lawn party, complete with croquet, badminton, hor d’oeuvres, wine and beer, free face painting for the kids and other fun activities for the whole family. Unwind and enjoy the majestic beauty of one of the most well preserved Victorian towns in America. Entry is a $20 donation per person or $35 per couple and includes a drink ticket. Children are free. Visit or e-mail for more information.

August 8
Green Ranch Hike    
This guided walk, Aug. 8 from 9 a.m. to noon, traverses an area of the Golden Gate Canyon State Park that is not developed and only open to visitors during a guided excursion. Participants will recall the history of the area, catch glimpses of wildlife, and see open vistas of the Front Range. This is an easy three-mile loop through the old corral area and return to the car. Meet Volunteer John Moyer at the Visitor Center to start this walk through history. A valid park pass is required on each vehicle that attends. Call Interpretive Ranger Jim Bick at 303-642-3203 or visit for additional information.

August 8-9
Meet the wolves of Wolfwood Refuge
Wolfwood Refuge makes its annual visit to Hermit Park Open Space near Estes Park, Aug. 8-9 from 9:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. each day. Wolf talks take place at 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. Visitors will have the opportunity to meet some of the new ambassador wolves, enjoy petting, take photos, receive wolf kisses and free wolf fur. Wolfwood’s mission is to provide a safe refuge for unwanted and homeless wolves and wolf-dogs. There will be lots of new Wolfwood items for sale with 100 percent of the profits going to the refuge. A $6 daily entrance permit is required for the park. Visit and to learn more.

August 9 & 26
‘F.O. Stanley: A Life Well-Lived’ reenactment
Performer Kurtis Kelly steps into the role of the legendary F.O. Stanley, Aug. 9 and Aug. 26 from 2-3 p.m., at the Historic Fall River Hydroplant at 1754 Fish Hatchery Road. Stanley reflected in 1928 that no visitor to Estes Park “has had a more varied experience than I have had.” Stanley, along with his twin brother, also gained national fame as developers of an early and popular form of dry-plate photography, and later as developers of the Stanley Brothers steam-powered automobile, which held the land-speed record in 1906. Stanley was also a maker of fine violins and operated a violin-making firm with his nephew, Carleton Stanley. Kelly’s performance, sponsored by the Estes Park Museum, explores these many achievements of Stanley’s long and varied life. The event costs $3 for museum members and youth under 16 years old and $5 for non-members. No registration is required. The Hydroplant will be open for free guided tours before and following the performance from 1 – 4 p.m.  For more information, visit

August 12
Mud Lake Open Space Night Hike
Join Boulder County Parks & Open Space volunteer naturalists, Aug. 12 from 8-10 p.m., for a free night hike to explore the Mud Lake Open Space property near Nederland under the cover of darkness. Participants will hike about one mile round-trip on an easy trail, enjoying the starlight, listening for night sounds and learning about the nocturnal habits of the critters that live there. Bring water, closed-toe hiking shoes or boots, a flashlight and night eyes.  To learn more, visit or contact Larry Colbenson at 303-678-6214 or

August 17-18
Stage 2 Finish of USA Pro Challenge
Arapahoe Basin Ski Area hosts the Stage 2 finish of the USA Pro Challenge, Aug. 18, billed as the most difficult professional cycling race in America and featuring the world’s best cyclists. A-Basin has planned two days of camping, concerts and family-friendly activities for cycling enthusiasts and those who want to get the full Colorado experience while visiting Summit County. On Aug. 17-18, A-Basin will open its parking lots to reserved camping, with several options depending on the size of the interested group. Availability of campsites is limited, so guests are encouraged to reserve their space online or call to book now. Food and beverage options—including the famous 6th Alley Bar & Grill—will be available both days. A concert featuring Brother’s Keeper with John Popper, with special guest The Samples takes place on Monday and the Freddy Jones Band will play in A-Basin’s Base Area Village on Tuesday. Both concerts are free and open to the public, even if not camping. In addition to the Stage 2 finish, activities on Race Day include lawn games, a guided nature hike to mid-mountain, a kids’ bike race and free chairlift rides on the Black Mountain Express lift. Visit or call 888.ARAPAHOE for additional details and complete schedule.

August 21-22
Studio Plein Air Painting
This Art Center of Estes Park class with Jeanne Mackenzie, Aug. 21-22 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., will help artists loosen up and become more spontaneous with their painting. Often, artists paint ‘plein air’ with a sense of bravado and then tighten up when they work from a photo. During class, participants will use photo references while learning how to treat them as if painting the scene on location. Emphasis will be on good composition, inviting design, correct values and colors that sing. The instruction and demos will be for oils but those well versed in other mediums are welcome. The class is available to all levels of painters. Visit, e-mail or call 970-586-5882 for more information.

August 22
‘Ghosts of The West: The End of the Bonanza Trail’ screening
The Historic Park Theater in Estes Park presents a special annual showing of “Ghosts of the West: The End of the Bonanza Trail,” Aug. 22 at 2 p.m. This benefit event to assist in the restoration of the Historic Park Theatre screens the Best Documentary Award-winning feature film on the ghost towns of the Old West by Colorado-based writer and director E. S. Knightchilde three years after a “sneak peak” of the show in Estes Park in September 2012. The film relates stories of towns from mineral strike to boom to bust, revealing their ultimate fates and legacies. A Q&A session with the filmmakers follows. Visit and for additional information.

August 27
Rocky Mountain National Park ‘Centennial Science Behind the Scenery’ program
The Centennial Science Behind the Scenery series highlights scientific activity and learning in the park. Each week a different scientist conducting research in the park will share their experiences and discoveries. Join Lindsay Ringer, Aug. 27 to learn about bringing back native plants after the Bear Lake road construction project. The biodiversity of National Parks is what is loved about natural gems such as Rocky Mountain National Park. Unfortunately, with construction, soil resources are impacted that can alter the direction of plant establishment and encourage growth of weedy, annual species. In addition, nitrogen deposition from the Front Range and from cars, encourages the growth of annual weeds like cheat grass. Lindsay is a master’s student with a passion for research questions that address plant-soil relationships. This presentation will talk about the soil response and restoration on Bear Lake Road since the road construction in 2012-2013. Visit or call 970-586-1206 to learn more.

August 28
Past Moving Forward benefit auction, wine pull and picnic at Hamill House
Be a part of historic preservation and have a great time at the Hamill House Museum’s Past Moving Forward Benefit Auction, Wine Pull and Picnic, Aug. 28. Proceeds go to the museum’s restoration fund. Enjoy an evening of live entertainment, food, a chance to win great items and a special Wine Pull in which everyone is a winner. Surrounded by the majestic beauty of one of the most well preserved Victorian towns in America from the grounds of the Hamill House Museum, former home of mining magnate William Arthur Hamill. Tickets are $20 each or $35 per couple and include a drink ticket. Visit or e-mail for more information.

August 31
Centennial Concert with The Denver Brass
The Estes Park Music Festival presents a free public concert, Aug. 31 at 7:30 p.m. in celebration of the 100th anniversary of Rocky Mountain National Park. It will be performed by the Denver Brass, an elite ensemble recognized throughout the U.S. and the world as one of the premier ensembles of its kind and setting itself apart through its sound, original repertoire and concert  performances. Denver Brass features a musical palate as diverse as the culture of the western US to present a sound experience that makes an impression long past the final chord of the concert, much as RMNP leaves indelible memories in the minds of its many visitors. The concert takes place at Stanley Hotel Concert Hall. Call 970- 586-9519 or visit to learn more.

Town preserves Colorado gold mining history
The City of Black Hawk recently announced it purchased some of the most historically significant and celebrated gold mining properties in Colorado. The properties, sold by the Blake family, include the famed Gregory Diggings, the Bobtail Lode and the Bobtail Tunnel. These historic sites will be incorporated into plans to redevelop Gregory Street along with new amenities to enhance the Black Hawk resort experience.

Through the acquisition, Black Hawk will preserve and promote the contributions these landmarks made to the history of the city and Colorado. “In Colorado, history does not get any richer or any more significant than these mining properties,” declared Black Hawk Mayor and fifth generation resident David D. Spellman.

The John F. Gregory’s diggings were among the regions first and most productive and led to the formation of the first mining district. Historical records indicate the Bobtail Lode ranks among the most productive of Colorado mineral veins  against which others were measured. The Bobtail Tunnel is perhaps the most treasured property acquired. “Many Colorado families will recall going… into the Bobtail Tunnel on a donkey pulled cart,” recalled Spellman.

The details of the Gregory Street redevelopment will be announced later this year along with an official groundbreaking ceremony.

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