Cathy Walton-Smith: My favorite time of year |

Cathy Walton-Smith: My favorite time of year

Cathy Walton-Smith
View from the Lake

Now that the chaos of Labor Day weekend is over, and the kids are back to school, Grand Lake will begin to slow down. Not so much in the number of activities and events, but in the sheer volume of people coming and going. This is the time of year I like best. Our cool evenings are perfect for a campfire, the sunsets are gorgeous, the aspen leaves are beginning to turn a golden yellow and you can find a parking spot in town. Oh, it might rain a little, but it will stop.

I especially like our visitors this time of year. They appreciate the peace and quiet we have to offer and seek out the locals to share their experiences and hear a little about the history of our town. Our events are geared a little for the locals, but hey, guests are always welcome.

The election for Grand Lake mayor is coming up later this month. On Tuesday, Sept. 9, at 7 p.m. at the Grand Lake Fire Station, there will be an important forum and discussion with the two candidates ” incumbent mayor, Judy Burke, and challenger Glen Harrington. This is the one event where you will learn where both candidates stand on the issues that concern Grand Lake’s residents, businesses and the direction we will move toward the future. Even if you do not reside within the Town of Grand Lake, you should plan to attend this important event.

Are you thinking about buying a home, but not sure how to get started? You’re not sure if you can qualify for a loan in today’s market? It’s a buyer’s market.

Homebuyers’ Education workshops are help once a month in different locations around the county. This class will help prepare you to become a successful homeowner. The workshop will cover everything you need to know to purchase a home: how to determine if you can afford it, how to find a loan and how to work with Realtors, appraisers and lenders. This month’s class is this Tuesday, Sept. 9, 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. in the Granby Community Center.

By completing this class, you’ll earn a certificate that could help you qualify for down payment assistance or special loan programs. The class also includes a comprehensive workbook that will help you plan the home buying process. Please register in advance by callling (970) 887-7271 or register online at

The Grand Lake Juniper Library continues its adult programs in September. On Thursday, Sept. 11, at 12:30 p.m., the Brown Bag Book Group will meet to discuss “Lucia: A Venetian Life in the Age of Napoleon,” by Andrea Di Robilant. You still have time to read the book. Bring your lunch and join others for a lively discussion.

Then, on Wednesday, Sept. 17, at 6:30 p.m., there will be an Historical Character Program of Doc Susie at the Juniper Library. One of Grand County’s most beloved citizens is portrayed by Kathy Naples. Doc Susie arrived in Fraser in 1907 as a semi-invalid. Trained as a doctor, she nevertheless had to “prove” herself by treating a horse before the locals would trust her as their doctor. Free with light refreshments.

The Grand Lake Chamber of Commerce members have been working hard organizing the Fall Festival coming up on Sept. 20 and 21. There will be music, food, beer and other vendors. Volunteers are needed to help with this event. Please call Brad Taylor at (970) 627-3402.

Sept. 20 promises to be a very busy day. Annie Surbeck, a  Colorado Artist ,will be teaching a free watercolor workshop. Join her anytime between 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Pavilion across from the Kauffman House Museum. No sign up required as its a very casual event. If you have any questions, please call the Grand Lake Art Gallery at (970) 627-3104. Then, later, join The Grand Lake Art Gallery between 5 to 7 p.m. to

meet Barbara Campbell and view her beautiful handcrafted pottery and to enjoy the music of local cowboy poet, Jon Cook. Light refreshments will be served. Be sure to pick up a map to see what other galleries and businesses are on the Art Walk, sponsored by the Grand Arts Council.

Tickets are now on sale for “A Night in Morocco” fundraising dinner and show sponsored by the Grand Arts Council. This year’s event is Sept. 20 at 6 p.m. at Caroline’s Cuisine. This is the fifth year for this fabulous evening of authentic Middle Eastern food prepared by chef Jean-Claude plus exciting entertainment by a bevy of belly dancers featuring Rafi’ah of Denver and Kysheema of Grand Lake. Tickets are $40 per person or $75 per couple at the Grand Lake Art Gallery and Elk Horn Gallery in Winter Park, or call me at (970) 531-3055. Dinner guests are encouraged to dress in keeping with this exotic theme.

Dance like nobody’s watching.

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