Cathy Walton-Smith: 2008 banner year for wild flowers |

Cathy Walton-Smith: 2008 banner year for wild flowers

Cathy Walton-Smith
View from the Lake

I am such a sucker when it comes to the beauty that surrounds us. It changes from season to season, but it’s never-ending. Lately, it’s been one spectacular scene followed by another ” the rising moon reflected on the lake, a fox trotting beside my car carrying dinner for her family, a flash of blue as a mountain bluebird crosses my path, the fresh smell of the sagebrush after a rain storm.

Today, my breath has been taken away by the rolling meadows of mountain blue lupine. If you haven’t seen them, take a turn off the main drag onto one of the county roads ” and remember to bring your camera.

I love our wildflowers. Most years they are pretty good, but this year promises to be a banner year, starting with the dandelions and blooming into an amazing array of blue, yellow, red, purple and pink. Don’t be afraid to pick a few and press them between the pages of an old Denver phone book, or hang them upside down to dry.

Just pick a few and enjoy them in a vase. They’ll be gone before you know it.

Volunteers are still needed to collect money at the stop sign in Grand Lake for the Fourth of July Fireworks, anytime between 10 a.m. until 7 p.m. Shifts are generally two hours or more and volunteers have a tendency to be somewhat flamboyant in their dress for duty. It can take some creativity to get people to give up a dollar or 20.

For donations and to volunteer, call Doris at (970) 531-0099.

Keep your eye on the corner lot next to the bowling alley. I hear that Rocky Mountain Repertory Theatre has something in store for us July 11.

Caroline’s Cuisine is helping us to find ways to budget our spending and still go out for a nice dinner. On Wednesdays, buy one Porterhouse steak entree and get the second one free when you buy any bottle of wine from their wine list. They’ve also added “Petite Plats” to the regular menu. These are a selection of smaller dinners starting at just $13 ” and it’s just the right amount of food.

Betty’s Cafe on Highway 34 is offering Gold Camp Grub along with Mountian Music every Saturday night at 6 p.m. Sing along or just tap your toes for some good family fun. There is old-time music and stories of the old mining days. Dinner is just good old-fashioned home cookin’ ” with smothered steaks, southwest chicken, baked potatoes, miner’s beans biscuits and cobbler ” yum. All for just $15.95 adults and $9.95 kids 10 and under. Call 627-1934 for reservations.

Then, next to Betty’s Cafe, there is a Flea Market every Saturdy and Sunday from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. There is absolutely no need to organize your own garage sale when you can just pack up all your stuff and haul it over to where more people will stop ” right on Hwy 34. 12’x12′ booth is only $20 per day or $35 for the weekend. There are rules ” so give them a call at (970) 531-7746.

Be sure and check out the vintage apron and tablecloth display at the Kauffamn House through July 21. (I have some in my own linen closet.) Take a tour through the museum while you’re there, your admission is a donation which helps keep the museum open.

A few tickets are still available for the Grand Arts Council Annual Art and Architecture Home Tour this Saturday, June 28, from 1 to 5 p.m. Tour five of Grand Lake’s most interesting houses and then come to a tour gathering at the Bears Den from 4 to 6 p.m. You’ll see one house on Grand Lake, one on Shadow Mtn. Lake, one on the North Inlet River and two view houses out of town. Tickets can be purchased for $25 at Grand Lake Art Gallery and Elk Horn Art Gallery in Winter Park or by calling (970) 627-3097. Sponsored by Andrea Cox – RE/MAX Resorts of Grand County, Inc.,

Donna Ready – Mountain Lake Properties, Grand Mountain Bank, Grand County Title and Boater’s Choice Boat Rental.

The third annual “Tops of the Rockies” fundraiser for the Juniper Library in Grand Lake is tomorrow from 5:30 to 8 p.m. at the Yacht Club. Sponsored by the Friends of the Grand County Library, Inc., this evening of entertainment will also feature wine tasting and light hors d’oeuvres as guests mingle among the decorated table tops. Tickets are $55 in advance, reserved online at For more info call (970) 627-0557.

On July 4, from 2 to 4 p.m Grand Lake Cabin Owner Nancy Larner, artist and author, will be signing her new book “A Mouse in the Rabbi’s Study” at the Grand Lake Art Gallery. This is a charming tale of a mouse who spends the winter in a Synagogue.

It’s summertime ” summertime ” sum sum summertime.

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