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National Park Week: Visit Colorado’s four national parks for free

National Park Week runs through Sunday, April 28, so pack the sunscreen, set the GPS and head toward one of Colorado’s four national parks.

Rocky Mountain National Park

Bear Lake at the Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado, USA. (shutterstock.com)

Rocky Mountain was the third most-visited park in the nation in 2018, according to the National Park Service, with nearly 4.6 million visitors. Get away from the tour buses and get a glimpse of the solitude and high-Alpine scenery that make Rocky truly iconic.

Continue reading at DenverPost.com.

Great Sand Dunes National Park

Great Sand Dunes National Park Colorado at Sunset. (shutterstock.com)

Tucked away against the base of the Sangre de Cristo Mountain Range is a Colorado secret that feels otherworldly. Great Sand Dunes sees significantly fewer visitors than Rocky Mountain. This means you can practically guarantee peace and quiet as you explore the massive sand dunes and all their wind-swept glory.

Continue reading at DenverPost.com.

Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park

Black Canyon of the Gunnison in Colorado. (shutterstock.com)

At just over 300,000 visitors in 2018, Black Canyon of the Gunnison is certainly one of the quieter parks that you will visit, which is great: You may have this gem all to yourself. Located near Montrose, Black Canyon is far from the crowds of Denver, so this gigantic ditch feels more intimate and private than its flashy Arizona relative. This Precambrian rock is nearly 2 million years old, according to colorado.com, and is named the Black Canyon because its walls are frequently darkened with shadows.

Continue reading at DenverPost.com.

Mesa Verde National Park

Mesa Verde National Park in Colorado. (shutterstock.com)

While the other three national parks all focus on natural features, Mesa Verde is the lone Colorado park (and UNESCO World Heritage Site) highlighting manmade structures. Sited in the Four Corners region in the southwestern quadrant of the state, Mesa Verde is home to 5,000 archaeological sites including 600 cliff dwellings hidden in the steep walls of the tree-covered mesa. These dwellings were the homes of the Ancestral Pueblo people who lived there between 600 and 1300 CE before leaving the region entirely. Today, these sites are some of the best-preserved dwellings in the United States, according to the Park Service.

Continue reading at DenverPost.com.

From gluten-free to nonalcoholic, Colorado at the forefront of beer’s next transformation

Colorado was a beer state since before it was a state. Adolph Coors and partner Jacob Schueler opened what was then the Golden Brewery in 1873, three years before Colorado achieved statehood. A century later, Colorado was at the forefront of the craft brewing movement when Boulder Beer launched in 1979 and laid claim to the title of first licensed “microbrewery” in the country.

In an industry that’s seen its growth go flat in recent years, beer makers are on the lookout for, and, in many cases, already working on the next wrinkles to throw into their tanks that have potential to scoop up new drinkers or boost interest from existing ones.

No surprise, Colorado is expected to be at the forefront of next wave of beer and beer alternatives, industry advocates say.

“Colorado has been known as the hotbed of innovation in beer for several decades,” Andres Gil Zaldana, executive director of the Colorado Brewers Guild, said. “Consumer preference in the recent decade or so has shifted to more of a health and wellness perspective and that really fits with Colorado in general. We all like to run, hike and bike.”

To read the full story on The Denver Post website.

Aspen climate change event will include Grammy-studded concert at Benedict Tent

Grammy-winners Patti LaBelle, Alan Parsons, Colbie Caillat and others will highlight a concert next month at Benedict Music Tent as part of a new Aspen event focusing on climate change.

Backed by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the new nonprofit Earth’s Call announced it will host a three-day conference (May 17 to 19) at Aspen Meadows. According to the announcement, “Earth’s Call finds and funds innovative solutions to fight the climate crisis.”

The group said that in an effort to minimize the size of its carbon footprint, there will be a block of free passes for Aspen and Colorado residents. The event will be by invitation-only to interested persons who send an explanation on why they want to attend.

Mitch Salzstein, marketing director for the event, said Sunday several hundred people who apply on their website will be invited, but the key is getting people who are driven to help the environment.

“We are trying to get people who really care and are passionate about the environment and can take the experience back home with them,” he said. “We want to fill it with people who are environmentally driven.”

The Saturday concert will be livestreamed on the nonprofit’s website and hopes to bring international attention to the conference and its mission.

The nonprofit wants to be a “financial catalyst for environmental pioneers,” so they can focus on solving rising global temperatures. They are backed by the MacArthur Foundation’s Lever for Change.

“Earth’s Call was created around the belief that many of the most hopeful solutions to fight climate change get too little funding and attention — while those with funds and attention often struggle to connect with true innovators,” the announcement said.

The Saturday night concert will also include Mickey Hart from Grateful Dead, R&B singer Anthony Hamilton, South African male choral group Ladysmith Black Mambazo, the female group Compton Kidz Club and the Earth’s Symphony Orchestra.

For more information on the Aspen event, go to the Earth’s Call website at supportearthscall.org.

Tips to get your grill ready for summer

There are die-hard grillers who don’t see why a little cold or sleet should stand between them and a juicy grilled steak. The rest of us in colder climes throw a cover over our grills for the winter and wheel them into a garage or storage spot, wheeling them out months later as the mercury climbs back up.

None of us, however, can assume that last year’s grill is ready to roll as soon as we fire it up.

What to do to get your grill ready for service again:

A THOROUGH ONCE OVER

Look for signs of rust or cracks in the metal or grill lines. It’s also possible that little critters may have found their way into the grill, and need removing. Get the least squeamish person in the family to do that.

A grill in need of some upkeep after sitting outside unused during the winter months. Shutterstock.com

WIPE DOWN THE OUTSIDE

Amanda Haas, a cookbook author who works with Traeger Grills, says: “Lots of grills are covered in grease, dust, and pollen when you lift that cover after a long winter of hibernation, so give the outside a thorough scrub down. Keeping it clean will extend the life of the grill and help prevent accidents due to sticky or greasy surfaces.”

You probably can get away with warm soapy water, but there are also products for cleaning specific kinds of grills.

DON’T FORGET THE INSIDE OF THE LID

Whether you use gas or another type of grill, the inside of the lid will likely have buildup from the previous year. Not only does it look gross, it also can be a fire hazard. Use a strong brush, possibly the same kind you use to clean the grill grates, or maybe a nylon brush, depending on the grill material. Personally, I don’t care about scratches inside the lid of my grill — I’m just happy when it’s clean.

A paint scraper is also handy for cleaning out built-up gunk.

CLEAN THE INSIDE

Do all of the following with the gas off, if applicable.

Clean the “flame tamers,” right over the gas burners underneath the metal grilling grates. A skewer, toothpick or paper clip are good for making sure all the little holes in the burners are open and unclogged. There are also tiny wire brushes made for this purpose. Later, when you test the grill, peek to see if any holes are still clogged. Then, once the gas is off again, give those openings an extra go-over.

Empty the grill of all ash and debris from the previous year (remove the grate to do this).

Make sure that grease pan is empty! Ideally, you would have emptied it at the end of last season, but in case you forgot, this is a big one, as grease fires are a hazard. Check this about once a week if you grill regularly.

CHECK THE FUEL LINE

One insider tip for making sure your gas line is uncompromised is to brush the outside of the gas tubes with soapy water and then run the gas. If you see any bubbles along the tubes, there are leaks and the tubes need to be replaced. If you see bubbles where the tubes connect into the grill or gas tank, these might just need tightening.

GET THE GRATES SPARKLING CLEAN

Start the season with clean grates, both for sanitary reasons and because you want to kick off your grilling with a beautiful clean grill and beautiful clean grill marks on your food. For a gas grill, turn all the burners to high, shut the lid and let the grill heat for 15 minutes. Open the lid and hopefully everything stuck to the grill will have burned off. Then, just give it a good scrub with a grill brush or grill scraper. Make sure no bristles get stuck on the grill rack. A wadded-up piece of foil held with tongs also does a good job. You can give the clean grate a light brush with oil while it awaits your next grilling session.

Haas advises, “If it’s been awhile since you’ve cleaned your grill grates, remove them and take a nylon sponge or hard bristle brush to them along with some tough cleanser. Make sure to rinse and dry them thoroughly before placing back on the grill.”

STOCK UP ON FUEL

If you need a new tank of fuel, go grab it before you marinate those chops (and consider a backup tank so you never get caught short in the middle of a fleet of sausages.)

If briquets, wood or pellets are your fuel of choice, lay in a supply of those. Jay Buzaid, owner of Powerhouse Appliances in New Milford, Connecticut, says that if you use hardwood charcoal or pellets, then take a close look at any unused fuel from the previous year. If there’s any mold, it all needs to be tossed. If it’s clean and dry, use it.

“In the summer, extreme temperature fluctuations from hot to cold cause moisture to build up, and sometimes the hardwood pellets and charcoal get wet from condensation — especially if the grill is in the sun,” he says.

He tells customers that wet hardwood charcoal can be dried out, but he recommends tossing wet pellets. Regular grill use can help prevent this problem, and he also suggests storing pellets in the manufacturer’s bag, which is designed to help them stay dry.

FIND A SAFE PLACE

If possible, your grill should be at least 10 feet from your house, and not near an open window. It should be situated on a fireproof and stable surface like concrete or brick, if possible. Make sure it’s somewhere you can monitor at all times when the grill is going. And make sure there isn’t an overhang, to prevent fire or carbon monoxide buildup.

CHECK YOUR TOOLS

Did you leave those tools lying on the grill under that cover all winter? Mmmm, been there.

Take a good look at your tools, and if you think they aren’t shipshape, consider investing in new ones. A worn-down grill brush doesn’t clean well, and a basting brush that wasn’t properly cleaned before the end of the season may need replacing. Get a good instant-read thermometer for measuring the internal temperature of meat; it’s one of a good griller’s secrets to success.

Haas loves having long, stainless steel tongs, an oversize spatula, a perforated pan for grilling veggies, and small kitchen towels to protect hands as she puts food on and off the grill.

So now that you’re ready to grill, the only big decision left is … what’s for dinner?

#PostSnaps — Reader-submitted photos from across Garfield County

Reader submitted photos from around Garfield County. Use #postsnaps on Instagram to be featured. This week’s picks:

@juzzigrams

@outsidener

@sethjandersen

@simply.blessings.photography

Scott Condon column: The things I love (and hate) about Moab

As good as the skiing has been, I needed a four-day weekend in the desert to melt away my end-of-winter blues.

Multiple hours of hiking and biking last weekend gave me plenty of time to think of my love/hate relationship with the Greater Moab Desert Area. I have loved the canyon country and what it inspires me to do since my first trip 33 years ago next month. I hate that so many tourists — people such as me — are flooding the area in increasing numbers and with a growing arsenal of toys and activities to undertake.

Family campsite by the Colorado River in Moab, Utah.
Shutterstock

I loved drinking beer around the campfire and occasionally howling at the moon.

I loved that even though there were a fair number of campers within earshot of one another, everyone was cool and chilled out at a reasonable time of night.

I loved getting up to whiz Saturday morning and seeing the setting moon turn the clouds red. Not sure I’ve seen that before.

I loved how the diversity of trails allowed us to ease into our mountain biking season and ride increasingly tougher terrain over three outings.

I loved how even though it was a busy weekend, we were able to hike in a relatively obscure canyon and not see anyone for three hours. We had one of the coolest pictographs I’ve ever seen to ourselves for as long as we wanted.

I loved visiting the Moab Brewery. No trip is complete without it.

I loved seeing endless sandstone cliffs with desert varnish again.

I loved watching the ravens play tag with one another.

I loved how my bicycle performed after a January tune by the valley’s best mechanic.

I loved how I survived the weekend with just a few bruises and lost skin but no major injuries.

I hated to see during a short walk from our camp to a canyon rim that a few soulless mountain bikers had indiscriminately plowed through crypto soil gardens.

I really hated that so many mountain bikers either were unaware that uphill riders have the right-of-way or they didn’t see fit to honor the singletrack code.

I hated that some of the side-by-side vehicle drivers were true pricks with no regard for anything but their need for speed. They acted like they were in a rally car race and that pedestrians and bikers on the dirt roads were obstacles to maneuver around at high speeds.

I hated people who pulled into trailhead parking lots with their music blaring. Dude, no one cares what you’re listening to.

I hated that Moab can’t get a grip on sprawl.

Most of all, I hated I didn’t buy something in Moab 25 years ago when I first thought of it.

Joan Osborne on her years-long Bob Dylan covers project

Joan Osborne felt Bob Dylan’s presence before she ever saw him in-person.

In 1998, Osborne — hot off of her mega-hit “One of Us” — was set to record a new duet of Dylan’s “Chimes of Freedom,” with Dylan himself, for the TV mini-series “The ‘60s.”

She got to the New York City studio early, she recalled, and was hanging out with his band when he entered in silence.

“My back was to the door and when he arrived, even through I couldn’t hear him, I noticed how the weather in the room immediately changed,” she said in a recent phone interview from her country home in upstate New York. “No one really looked at him or talked to him, but all of a sudden everyone became hyper-aware of him, gauging his mood.”

She soon learned the response was from musicians who’d grown used to trying to keep up with him.

“People who work with him develop this low-key vigilance,” she explained, “because he changes his mind very quickly. He has this restless intelligence, where he tries out an idea and by the time he has tried one version of the idea he’s already moved on to something else.”

A lifelong Dylan devotee, Osborne’s singer-songwriter career had always been infused with his music and his influence. Her global sensation of a debut album, in 1995, included her take on the hidden Dylan gem “Man in the Long Black Coat” and she’d frequently included Dylan covers in her live sets.

But she’s gone all in for the last three years, with a full album of Dylan covers and a tour that comes to The Temporary at Willits on April 19. (It’s been several years since she’s been back in the Aspen area, though Osborne has been playing here since a 1997 headlining slot at Jazz Aspen’s Labor Day Festival.)

The current project started with a 2016 residency at the Café Carlyle, the legendary cabaret room that’s been running in Upper East Side Manhattan’s Carlyle hotel since 1955. Given two weeks of shows and no creative restraints, Osborne decided to use the residency to immerse in Dylan’s songs.

“We were uncertain if people were going to like it, but from the very first night it’s been really fun and it’s been a joy for us to do this deep dive into this material,” Osborne said.

The Dylan catalog is deeper than the ocean, of course, spanning six decades and 38 albums and the ever-expanding trove of his “Bootleg Series.”

“It was definitely a difficult thing to choose from the hundreds and hundreds of great songs that Bob Dylan has,” Osborne said. “It’s kind of a double-edged sword. On the one hand, there’s so much to choose form. On the other hand, how do you decide?”

After the residency, she got to work on what would become her “Songs of Bob Dylan” album, released in 2017.

Throughout her long career, Osborne said, she’s kept in the back of her mind the late 1950s run of records by jazz singer Ella Fitzgerald that each tackled the catalog of an iconic American songwriter.

“I always thought this was a great idea and something that I would like to do with writers who I feel uniquely drawn to, who are from my era,” she said.

Osborne’s Dylan record offers new spins on the classics and shines a light on some overlooked Dylan compositions.

Her “Highway 61 Revisited” is a dark and ominous country song, her “Rainy Day Women #12 & 35” is a slow and soulful blues. In “Masters of War,” Osborne puts her formidable voice up front, with a steady acoustic guitar in the background and a gradual build of piano.

The enduring relevance and resonance of Dylan’s early work continues to strike Osborne.

“These things that might have been written about something that was happening in his youth are very relevant to what is going on in the world right now,” Osborne said. “It’s particularly genius in the way that he wrote them that they could be timeless in that way.”

But along with those iconic early Dylan classics, the album spans five decades of the Dylan catalog and unearths some deep cuts like “Dark Eyes” (off of Dylan’s largely forgotten 1985 album “Empire Burlesque”) and “Tryin’ to Get to Heaven” (off of the definitive late-career Dylan album “Time Out of Mind” from 1997) and “High Water” (from 2001’s “Love and Theft”).

“I wanted to put things on the record that people would know, but also to dig a little deeper to allow people to discover something they didn’t already know,” she said. “We really wanted people – even who are fans of Dylan – to find out something they didn’t already know about him.”

Osborne admitted that even she didn’t know “Dark Eyes” until Patti Smith – who recorded a live duet version of it with Dylan – told her about it. Osbourne has also widely expanded her Dylan repertoire as she’s toured with the material over the last two years.

“As you’re on the road and doing the shows night after night, you want to keep it fresh for yourself and for the audience,” she explained. “So we put in some live-only bonus tracks and we are never really sure what those are going to be from night to night.”

Dylan is a towering culture figure and Nobel laureate who is also, somehow, an unknown and seemingly unknowable cipher of a human being. He has worn so many masks, taken on so many personas, revealed so little about his personal life, written and recorded so many hundreds of songs that he is beyond comprehension.

Though she’s spent time with the man and has now spent years studying and performing his work, Osborne remains in the dark like the rest of us.

When Osborne sang with the living members of the Grateful Dead for a stretch, beginning in 2003, they co-headlined a big summer tour with Dylan. They saw each other every day and sang together often on-stage, but Dylan – true to form – managed to not quite be there.

“I wouldn’t say he and I were hanging out a lot and that I got to know him as a person,” she said. “It wasn’t like we were sitting down and rapping about our childhood experiences or something. He was funny and nice and charming and all of that, but it was a work situation.”

When Osborne released her album of his songs, she didn’t hear from Dylan directly but he did post a compliment on his Facebook page.

“I was surprised even to get that,” Osborne said with a laugh. “He’s got an awful lot on his plate and talking about someone else covering his work is not something that he has to do. So it was very generous.”

Osborne this spring has been finishing up a new album of original material. After her years-long deep dive into Dylan’s world, he naturally seeped into her songwriting.

“He’s very funny in this wry, droll kind of way,” she observed. “I’ve tried to bring that out in this new record. … When you immerse yourself in this, it lets you be free in that way – and be humorous and real and bizarre.”

atravers@aspentimes.com

#PostSnaps — Reader-submitted photos from across Garfield County

Reader submitted photos from around Garfield County. Use #postsnaps on Instagram to be featured. This week’s picks:

@buffalogerl

@christine6369

@miranneda

@pinwillsfrozenyogurt

Food column: Galactic birthday cake is an out-of-world experience

Another trip around the sun, and I find myself a year older. On April 17, 1984 — sometime in the afternoon — I made my world debut. I was healthy and already had a full head of hair. I also had a bright red, triangular birthmark between my eyebrows. When I was a little older, my mom told me that I landed in a strawberry field and some strawberry smudged on my face. It must have been a crash landing. To this day, when I get mad, the birthmark angrily glows on my forehead.

Over the years, I have noticed that so many people were born during the month of April. My mom, aunt and cousin have birthdays within days of each other. It kind of makes me wonder what’s going on nine months earlier in August!

Anyway, I have always enjoyed having a spring birthday. The weather is usually beautiful, while new flowers push their way through the soil. Even if it snows, at least I can take the day off to go skiing. There are so many possibilities in April. Some years, I have even celebrated my birthday on Easter, and the Easter Bunny became my springtime Santa.

No matter when you celebrate your birthday, it should be a special day where things go your way. We all have our own rituals, but the idea of a birthday celebration itself goes back to ancient Egypt. The earliest mention of a birthday party was in the Bible and referred to a Pharaoh’s coronation. When a pharaoh was coronated on his birthday, he was considered a god, so birthday celebrations became very important to the Egyptians. Later, the Greeks revised the tradition to celebrate the lunar goddess, Artemis. They offered her a moon-shaped cake with candles to reflect the moon’s radiant glow and beauty.

Initially, early Christians rejected birthday celebrations, since they were rooted in pagan traditions. But over time, Christians saw the wisdom in celebrating birthdays, and Jesus Christ would go on to have the most famous birthday of all.

Modern birthday cakes emerged several hundred years ago in Germany, where the Germans would celebrate Kinderfest — a celebration meant for young children. They placed a lit candle on the cake to symbolize the light of life, and a modern tradition was born. Since then, baking supplies became cheaper and more standardized, so people around the world started to celebrate birthdays with cake, candles and of course, presents.

There are so many different kinds of birthday cakes to indulge in, including chocolate, red velvet, vanilla, lemon, buttercream sprinkle and even carrot cake.

For this column, I had the difficult task of choosing one kind of cake to make. I love them all, and I can’t say I have a favorite. I have always been partial to carrot cake, but I wanted to try something different this year. When I did some research, I found so many creative options from geode cakes to cakes with realistic flower blooms sprouting from them. Then I found something that would make Artemis proud: a galaxy cake.

Galaxy, or mirror, cakes are coated in a colorful glossy glaze made from chocolate and gelatin. Different colors are mixed into the glaze, so they appear marbled and psychedelic. Various colors can create different effects. Mix in some edible glitter and sanding sugar, and you can create a starry galaxy across the cake.

If you look up galaxy cakes online, you can see how they are works of art. Admittedly, I am not an experienced baker, so I’m nervous about the results. The cakes I bake usually require minimal preparation and are dumped together in a baking pan.

The galaxy cakes I have seen require perfection. The frosting needs to be evenly spread, and the glaze has to be exactly 90 degrees to properly coat the cake. There are many steps in the process, so I’ve greatly simplified the recipes I’ve found. I’ve also included some tips and tricks that I learned to make this even easier. Check out my simplified galaxy cake recipe below.

Galaxy Cake

Serves four to six people

Ingredients

2 packages white cake powdered mix

2 containers butter cream frosting

1 1/2 cups granulated sugar

2 teaspoons corn syrup

8 teaspoon gelatin powder, unflavored

2/3 cup sweetened condensed milk

1/2 cup water

1/2 cup water, room temperature

1 cup white chocolate, high cocoa butter

1 cup chocolate, cacao baking

1 tablespoon butter

Pinch of flour

1 teaspoon colored sanding sugar

1 teaspoon edible glitter

Food coloring

Directions

1. Bake cake mix per package instructions. Before pouring batter, make sure to rub butter and sprinkle flour in the backing pan. When finished backing, set cakes on a cooling rack for about 15 minutes. Be careful when removing cakes from pans.

2. While the cakes are baking, place containers of frosting on the stovetop to slightly warm them. When the cake is cooling, remove frosting from containers into medium bowl. Beat gently with a fork to fluff.

3. Place the bottom layer of the cake on a floured surface such as a wood cutting board or cake plate.

4. Pile a large amount of frosting on top of the bottom layer of the cake, and gently spread with a spatula or large butter knife. This frosting layer won’t be visible when cake is finished, so don’t worry about making it perfect.

5. Gently place the top layer on top of the frosted layer, and make sure both layers are vertically aligned. Add frosting to the top the same way as before. Then frost the sides of the cake and smooth with spatula or knife. It helps to rotate the cake, while gently pressing the edge of the spatula or knife on the frosting. Try to spread evenly, but don’t worry if some crumbs are mixed in. This is the “crumb layer” and will be covered later.

6. Place cake in freezer for 15 minutes. After the time has elapsed, add the second layer of frosting to the top and sides. Try to spread as evenly as possible. Once second layer is added, gently place a paper towel, with smoother layer facing down, on top of the cake. Use your fingers on top of the towel to gently smooth the top and sides of the cake.

7. Place cake in freezer for one hour. While the cake is freezing, combine sugar, corn syrup, condensed milk and water in a medium saucepan. Heat over medium-low heat while stirring.

8. Pour the lukewarm water over gelatin powder in medium bowl. Stir gently with a spoon until mixed, and let sit for a few minutes.

9. When the contents of the saucepan begin to simmer, remove from heat and stir in the wet gelatin until it is dissolved.

10. Place white and dark chocolate in separate medium bowls, and pour hot liquid over them equally. Leave for about five minutes. Stir with whisk until completely melted.

11. Pour mixture through a fine strainer into equally divided bowls. The number of bowls depend upon how many colors you wish to use. Keep white and dark color mixture separate and mix with appropriate colors.

12. Add colors to each bowl and slightly stir. Once the glaze has cooled to 90 degrees, pour each bowl over the frozen cake to create color swirls. Consider elevating the cake, so the droppings have a place to go. Once finished pouring, wait about 5 minutes, and use a warm knife to remove any excess drippings. Serve right way, and most importantly, enjoy your birthday or whatever it is that you are celebrating!

5Point Adventure Film’s Dream Project announces 2019 scholarship winners

Carbondale’s adventure film event 5Point Adventure Film Festival announced the winners of the Dream Project scholarship program Monday. The program is celebrating its 10th year.

The program offers outstanding high school students from Aspen to Parachute the chance to explore their own personal boundaries and dreams.

The seven students that best exemplify 5Point Film’s five guiding principles — purpose, respect, commitment, humility and balance — will receive a $1,500 scholarship to embark on an opportunity to follow their passion and actualize a dream.

Previous recipients of the grant have undertaken projects including leading a youth backpacking trip in the Roaring Fork Valley, starting a peace garden at a local high school, shadowing writers in New York City, teaching soccer in Puerto Rico, kayaking and working to prevent malaria in Uganda.

This year’s 5Point Dream Project winners, along with a provided description of their project, are:

Ella Beck — A senior at Colorado Rocky Mountain School, Beck will be using her Dream Project funding to travel to rural Nepal, where she will be working with the Oda Foundation’s Women’s Empowerment Team. Her focus will be on breaking down the stigmas surrounding menstruation in poor, rural communities by helping distribute sanitary products.

Isaac Musselman — A sophomore at Basalt High School, Musselman used his passion in aeronautics to educate and inspire others by creating an aviation and space club, which will include work with drones and rockets, guest speakers and astronomy nights, among other things. In addition, he will work to bring an aviation curriculum into the Roaring Fork School system.

Beverly Patton — A junior at Roaring Fork High School discovered her passion for writing and poetry when Aspen Words poets visited her school, and she learned a powerful new way to express her voice. Her dream is to share her love of poetry by teaching a weekly, semester-long poetry class to local middle school students.

Emily Northrup — A senior at Basalt High School, Northrup will be using her Dream Project funding to purchase her own cello, which will allow her to pursue her dream of becoming a music educator when she attends Brigham Young University in the fall.

Molly Hancock — A junior at Glenwood Springs High School, Hancock will be channeling her love of horses into creating a documentary about the Riding Institute for Disabled Equestrians (RIDE), an equine therapy program for developmentally and physically disabled children and adults.

Carla Soto — A junior at Basalt High School, Soto, who cares deeply about immigration and art, will be traveling to El Paso, Texas, where she’ll use her passion for photography to bring awareness to immigration issues arising from current border policies.

Three additional students, Eli Li, Chloe Gonzalez and Sarah Teague, made history by applying for their Dream Project jointly. This dynamic force will be headed to Denver to work with Urban Peak, an organization serving homeless youth. In addition, they will be investigating what legislators are doing to address the issues of homelessness and extreme poverty in the United States.

Throughout 5Point Film 2019, taking place April 25-28, Dream Project recipients since 2009 will be honored through events and programming over the festival weekend, including a reception, a Dream Project retrospective exhibition, and an award ceremony for the 2019 recipients.

The scholarships are made possible through support from community partnerships with Timbers Resorts, Alpine Bank, Amore Realty, Colorado Office of Film Television & Media, Poss Architecture + Planning and Interior Design, and 2757 Design.