FEATURE COVERAGE

Thu
07
Sep

Potter Ranch celebrates 80th anniversary

Christine Potter Witherspoon poses with her display at the Ouray County Fair last week. The exhibit depicts memories associated with the 80-year history of the Potter Ranch. Included was an antique washing machine used by the family for years, her father’s old hat and spurs, and her mother’s boots, among other memorabilia, some of which has been donated to the Ouray County Ranch History Museum in Ridgway.

Plaindealer photo by Mary Menz


by Mary Menz
news@ouraynews.com


Nestled in the lush valley between Ridgway and Ouray is the Potter Ranch, which is celebrating its 80th anniversary. Christine Potter Witherspoon, granddaughter of John and Jennie Potter, who purchased the original property in 1937, commemorated the event with an elaborate and memory-filled exhibit depicting the ranch’s history at the Ouray County Fair last weekend.
“I just love this ranch,” said Witherspoon. “It’s been my life and the life of my family, including my siblings and children.” All told, the ranch has supported four generations of Potters since 1937, when her grandparents leased the property to others from their home ranch in Gunnison.
“But when my father John turned 15, they gave him this ranch and the brand 43 bar, which represents the year he took ownership of it,” explained Witherspoon.
Shortly thereafter, John Potter...

Mon
24
Jul

OURAY COUNTY: Historic safes of the 1880s: A legacy that comes with the property

According to Guy Zani, Jr., an antique safe collector in Florida, distributors of safes and vaults in the late 19th century offered to have the purchaser’s name hand-lettered on the safe as an incentive to buy from them. Occasionally a safe also features the name of the distributor or selling agent on the front of the safe. This one was owned by Cascade Grocery.

Plaindealer photo by Mary Menz


by Mary Menz
news@ouraynews.com


More than 1,000 people lived in Ouray in 1876 when the town was incorporated. Not only was Ouray a bustling mining center, but it served as a distribution center for goods across the San Juan Mountain region—especially when the railroad arrived in 1887. To protect valuables and foil potential robbers, high traffic banks, businesses and brothels had large floor safes and vaults delivered to town by wagon or train.
Today, people can see many of these safes around the county, but they serve more as...

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Thu
15
Sep

Long distance runners endure mountain pass

by Tori Sheets

tori@ouraynews.com

 

Runners in the Imogene Pass Run headed out of Ouray early Saturday morning and traveled 17.1 miles over the mountain pass into Telluride. This year marks the 42nd time runners have participated in the grueling run over Imogene Pass. 

This year the weather was fairly mild compared to previous runs. In past years runners have had to trudge through rain, wind, fog and even snow along the course. Saturday the pass remained sunny and only a little chilly.

Volunteers at six aid stations along the route offered water, sports drinks and support to the runners. The Ouray cross country team bolstered the spirit of the runners by running up the pass before the race began and handing out drinks at the Harris Bridge Aid Station. 

Wed
17
Aug

Ouray historic cabin history questioned

by Tori Sheets

tori@ouraynews.com

 

One Ouray native is on a quest to correct historical information about a cabin at the Ouray County Historical Museum that he believes is inaccurate.  

Bill Crawford contacted Ouray County Historical Society to let them know he thinks the history on a cabin known as the Raab/Sly cabin is incorrect. According to the historical society, the cabin was built in 1905 and donated to the museum in 1971. The plaque on the cabin says it originally stood off Main Street between 9th Avenue and the Hot Springs Pool. The museum's website also says it may have been part of Ouray's "Red Light" district. 

Sat
30
Jul

Buried history close to home

by Tori Sheets

tori@ouraynews.com

 

Most people's front yards house gardens, pets or lawn furniture, but one Ouray resident enjoys the company of her deceased relatives close by. 

Coleen McElroy inherited the family cemetery from her father, who got the land from her great aunt. 

McElroy said her graveyard gives some people the creeps, but for her it’s just a part of life. She plans on being buried there along with all of her family who wish to spend the afterlife nestled along the banks of Dexter Creek.

"We'll all be out here, my mother and my sister, it's just not an option to go anywhere else," she said. 

Fri
15
Jul

Young actors learn the best of Shakespeare

by Tori Sheets
tori@ouraynews.com

Young thespians are getting an opportunity to expand their skills during a two week long theatre workshop under the direction of a nationally known theater instructor.
Kathleen O'Mara has been teaching, performing and directing performances since 1992. She has worked with thousands of students across the nation and taught many workshops like the one she is now teaching at the Sherbino Theater for Weehawken Creative Arts.
This particular workshop highlights iconic portions of Shakespearean plays and will culminate with two performances at the end of the lessons. Students will deliver Hamlet's monologue, fight scenes from "The Taming of the Shrew,” the balcony scene from "Romeo and Juliet" and more.

Thu
30
Jun

Playing around with Shakespeare

by Tori Sheets
tori@ouraynews.com

 

Fri
24
Jun

TOWN OF RIDGWAY No ordinary guy

John Billings greets guests Thursday at the Sherbino Theater prior to the private screening of a documentary about his craft.
 

Plaindealer photo by Alan Todd


By Alan Todd
alan@ouraynews.com



John Billings was presented as "just an ordinary guy in a small town in Colorado," but after an intimate group watched a private screening of a new documentary Thursday night at Ridgway's Sherbino Theater, few were left with ordinary thoughts.
Billings, a Ridgway resident and maker of the Grammy, invited several dozen people to watch "Chasing Life: The Grammy Man Story," a one-hour documentary made by Outpost Worldwide film out of Lenexa, Kansas in association with 7 Pillar Studios in Cisco, Texas.

Wed
15
Jun

Soulful band will rock the park

by Tori Sheets
tori@ouraynews.com


Thursday's headliner for Mountain Air Music Series packs a soulful punch. Founded in Portland, Oregon, Dirty Revival is a group of seven artists whose sounds focus on funk, rock and soul.
Singer Sarah Clarke leads the band with her resounding vocals.
"It's really a unique, funky, soulful rock sound," she said. "Based off the reaction of people when we play I think we create a fun atmosphere for people."
This is the band's second trip to Colorado and their first time in Ouray. Ouray is the third stop on the group's tour of the West after their release of the self-titled album "Dirty Revival" in September 2015.  
Clarke said she is excited to play in the natural amphitheater Ouray provides.
"Nature really helps amplify the noise and it's really interesting and always very lovely," she said.

Thu
26
May

Athletes set school records at state

by Tori Sheets
tori@ouraynews.com


The boys and girls relay teams set new school records during the state track meet this weekend in Lakewood.
The boys 4 x 800 relay team of Martin Torres, Eli Hagemeyer, Joey Fedel and Nate Fedel set a record of 8:35.41 and took 5th place overall. The previous record was set by Torres, the Fedel brothers and Ravi Inmon in Pagosa Springs on May 7.
The girls 4 x 400 relay team of Jayden Miles, Holly Harrington, Bella Hines and Kayla Fairchild set a record of 4:24.68. The previous record was 4:27.06 set in 2014.
Members of the track team are from Ouray, Ridgway and Silverton. According to Bernie Pearce, Ouray Athletic Director, the school records belong to Ouray because it is the host of the shared program.

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