Cyndi Palmer: A fresh, new start |

Cyndi Palmer: A fresh, new start

As the ball dropped in New York City’s Time Square and again as the skies were filled with diamond-like sparkles from what turned out to be the best-ever New Year’s Eve fireworks display in Grand Lake, I couldn’t stop my eyes from tearing up.Whether 2006 was a good or bad year, it is always nice to think everyone gets a fresh start or a Mulligan, if you will- another 365 days to shed nasty habits, meet new friends and achieve new goals in life.Rather than focusing on the traditional resolutions, I always like to promise myself to try to learn something new – expand my horizons. Last year, it was knitting, and I admit I didn’t get around to it; so, this year it’s to learn knitting and the harmonica (which sister Joy was kind enough to get me this Christmas). Who knows, I might end up being in my own band with my husband and his Christmas baritone saxophone, and some help from my brother-in-law Willy from band One Time and Joy playing the bongos and singing.Then again, maybe I should leave it to the professionals, which are doing a good job entertaining audiences in the county. Reports keep coming in on how much patrons of the Grand County Blues Society enjoyed Jimmy Hall concert at the Grand Theatre Company New Year’s Eve. Tickets were already sold out by the preceding Friday.Watch out next for Yaniv Salzberg, who is set to perform at the theatre this weekend with Neil Diamond tribute band, Cubic Zirconium. The theatre is also hosting a CD release party for Salzberg the following weekend, where fans will get the chance to hear some of Salzberg’s first-ever solo album.Many intriguing characters were just dying to attend the December murder mystery dinner at the Bears Den and Paws Pub, an event of deceit, treachery and death called The Santa Clause. It was time for the annual holiday party for the law firm of Lie, Cheat & Steal, a powerhouse law firm with influential ties to business, politics and government.I was also there and my character wasn’t too much of a stretch as Gabby Gossip, society columnist for the Dirty Daily. But, I admit I wasn’t much of a sleuth. In fact, no one in our group came close to pinning down exactly what happened that fateful night. I should’ve suspected something was up when Marsha Mallow, who turned out to be one of three killers in our midst, was the only kind character in the bunch. She kept complimenting my work at the Dirty Daily. I thought she was a nice lady, but it turns out she was buttering up the press and I didn’t even catch on.The Bears Den hosts murder mystery parties on a regular basis throughout the winter and owners Vickie and B.J. Johnson make it easy for anyone to participate with informational packets giving you a little background on the plot and your character. I must say, they also put on quite a spread. As Vickie said, Come hungry. The next murder mystery dinner theme is the Wild West.I also had fun with a large group of family members as we participated in the Grand Arts Council’s annual holiday melodrama Trapped in a Villain’s Web. As the first melodrama for my nephew, he got a kick out of hearing his aunt yell out, not only the traditional boos and cheers, but whistles and inspired ad-libs like Don’t do it and He’s a liar! Several other audience members shouted out creative responses to the action on stage and after seeing it was OK, my nephew really got into it, too.The young actors especially stood out in the spotlight that night. Each one amazed my family. The talented youths never seemed to fail their poise on stage or all those poignant lines to remember. If they are any sign of what future melodrama audiences have in store for them, Director Barbara Ahrens and the arts council should look forward to only more great local performances.We will all have to wait until next time for another chance at the homemade quilt, created by melodrama producer Linda Carlson and whose ticket proceeds benefited the Grand Arts Council.Jane Cherryholmes was the lucky winner, who got to take the king-size piece of art home.Other exciting news about town is that celebrity Drew Carey was in Grand Lake hanging out with part-time local resident, Tim Allen. If you happen to see the new Price is Right host, tell him, and Allen for that matter, that we’d love to have him drop by the news office.Food for thought: Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment, – Hindu Prince Gautama Siddharta, the founder of Buddhism.As always, I welcome any and all announcements for the All Access section, as well as the daily Community Calendar. Send them and any feature story requests to

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