Janet Day: Signs of spring: Mud, moose and spring break speeders | SkyHiNews.com

Janet Day: Signs of spring: Mud, moose and spring break speeders

Janet Day
Talk of the Valley

Signs of Spring. Finally, we’re starting to see some signs of Spring: A foot of snow followed by a foot of mud; the same gray skies we’ve seen all winter finally broken up by some terrific bluebird days; moose hanging out in driveways or other shoveled areas; kids on Spring Break going way too fast on hard-packed early morning ski trails.

The extended daylight in the evening means more time to get outside ” walk the dog, go for a run or hit the Nordic trails. But the occasional gloomy days mean great hours of guilt-free hanging around the house and reading. The Friends of the Fraser Library have made getting good books easier and cheaper. The group is selling new and used books in the front lobby of the library. The inventory includes fiction, non-fiction and children’s books all in good condition.

“Since our town no longer has a book store, this is our way of having books available, recycling good reading and have all the profits go to the Friends of the Library,” said member Joan Shaw. The books are donated by the public. Different books are added to the collection weekly, so there’s always something new to check out.

If you simply must have that best-seller, remember to shop online and help the Grand County Library system by going first to their Web site, http://www.gcld.org, and clicking on the Amazon.com logo. A portion of whatever you spend on Amazon will go to the library.

And Springtime in Fraser means Deb Ruttenberg’s painted refrigerator gets plopped on top of the ice at the pond south of Safeway. Win money and help a great cause by guessing when the fridge will fall through the ice. The refrigerator has been a stand-in for an old-fashioned icebox for the past few years, but now that we’ve lost claim to that name, we’ll stick with Ruttenberg’s replacement and call ourselves the Fridge of the Nation.

Visit http://www.iceboxdrop.com and click on Buy Your Tickets Here to register your guesses of the month, date, hour, minute and second that the fridge will sink. Guesses are three for $10 online. The closest guess wins $500 with $250 for second place and $100 for third. That will just about cover a couple tanks of gas. Proceeds from the raffle go to the Grand Foundation, which works diligently year-round to create healthier communities.

Carving for a Cause. Ken White and his daughter Victoria hit the slopes of Winter Park Resort this past weekend in their Mountains for Melanoma campaign. It’s a disease all of us at altitude should be aware of. Ken started the effort after surviving Stage 3 melanoma. Now, he and Victoria are skiing on every continent to raise money for fighting the disease. They’re hoping to raise $250,001 and are accepting donations as small as a dollar and as large as you want to give. Ken and Victoria started the seven-continent ski quest last year and were still at it with a sunny morning at Winter Park on Sunday.

Go to http://www.mountainsformelanoma.com for more information or to make an online donation. All contributions will go to the University of Colorado Melanoma Clinic Program.

Interesting Internet. I have a lot of Internet alerts set up so that I get all the online news and gossip about Winter Park, Fraser and other areas that interest me. Web sites provide the standard fare of snow reports and breaking news, but blogs can tell us a whole lot about our community as seen through the eyes of those who have visited.

I learned last week, for example, that one sick teen’s dream was to play in the snow in Colorado. A group called Kids Wish Network made that dream come true in Winter Park. No press releases or fanfare in advance of the visit, just an after-the-fact posting that our area activities made for a very special vacation for a 15-year-old Texan with a life-threatening disease.

The teen, Nicholas, stayed with his family at Zephyr Mountain Lodge and spent a few days taking ski lessons through the National Sports Center for the Disabled, tubing at the Fraser Tubing Hill, going for a sleigh ride with Dashing Thru the Snow, a ride with Dog Sled Rides of Winter Park, a snowcat tour at Winter Park Resort and a ride with Trailblazer Snowmobile Tours. That’s more than most tourists, and certainly most of us locals, do. Also contributing to Nicholas’ happy adventure were Jane Creek Grill, Ranch House Restaurant and the Untamed Grill.

Winter Park turns up in some unexpected blogs, like the one that someone known only as “ajohnson” uses for posts about the art of writing. He was visiting Winter Park Resort recently, feeling pretty confident about his skiing abilities, stopped paying as much attention as he should have on his way down to the base and crashed into some fencing. What’s any of that have to do with writing? Here’s how he explains it:

“Writing is like skiing because there are a bunch of things we have to keep in the back of our minds while we do it. If we let our guard down, even for a minute, we can totally wipe out.”

Looking back at my own writing career, I’d say ajohnson summed it up pretty well.

Another posting led me to learn that the Fireside Lounge at the Inverness Hotel and Conference Center in Denver’s south suburbs has a cheese-tasting offering called “Awe Chute at Mary Jane.” It includes three rather strong-tasting cheeses billed as “not for the faint of heart.” I suspect the chef or others at the golf resort are fans of the steep Mary Jane chute that, like the cheeses, requires confidence for the first try.

The funniest thing about setting up alerts for Fraser is how familiar I’ve become with minor league hockey player Fraser Filipic and Telluride Mayor Stu Fraser. As far as the Internet alerts are concerned, a Fraser is a Fraser is a Fraser.

Keep in Touch: What’s got your attention around the area? Let me know. I’ll try to find the answer or spread the news. Send it all to JDayQuilts@msn.com.