Mountain Mailbag |

Mountain Mailbag

Andrew Cline moving on up

The friends of Andrew Cline, 18, are busting with pride. The newly promoted airman apprentice successfully completed basic training at the Navy’s Great Lakes Recruit Training Command Center in Chicago. He also was awarded the National Defense medal for serving his country in a time of war.

Andrew is a 2003 graduate of Bridges High School and now is stationed in Pensacola, Fla., where he is undergoing his aviation apprenticeship training. He soon will be stationed in Okusa, Japan, to serve on the USS Kitty Hawk.

Three cheers

for Catholic Charities

Catholic Charities of the Western Slope, Glenwood Springs, is outstanding, but we always knew the group was something special. Thursday, Dec. 4, at the 15th anniversary Awards for Excellence Presentation Banquet at the Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs, the El Pomar Foundation will recognize this worthy charity for its work .

In the last 14 years, El Pomar’s Awards for Excellence program has provided $2.6 million to more than 350 organizations in 100 Colorado cities. More than $15,000 has been awarded to nonprofits in Garfield County. El Pomar is one of the largest private foundations in the Rocky Mountain West, with assets totaling more than $400 million.

Soldier shows his ‘Humanity’

Former President Jimmy Carter wasn’t there, but our boy Ryan Vath was on the job when the 1st Squadron, 14th Cavalry Regiment of Fort Lewis, Wash., pitched in on a Habitat for Humanity project Oct. 25 in the Tacoma, Wash., area.

The 2000 graduate of Glenwood Springs High hefted a hammer as part of Make a Difference Day before heading off to Iraq.

Stepmother Elizabeth Vath of Silt talked to him last week in Iraq and said he’s slowly adjusting to the daytime heat and wind and the nighttime chills.

“He says he eats five meals a day. I guess they carry so much gear they use up a lot of calories,” she said.

The Vath family is waiting to hear about the posting of Ryan’s brother Brandon. The 20-year-old Air Force sergeant, based in Tucson, Ariz., expects to be shipped off to Kuwait fairly soon.

Christmas is for the birds

Teach your children about the delights of birds and get them out in nature at the same time. Take them to the Roaring Fork Audubon Society’s workshop on decorating an outdoor wildlife tree. The workshop is scheduled from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 7, at River Valley Ranch.

The children will make various edible ornaments to decorate an outdoor wildlife tree. Holiday goodies and drinks will keep the kids interested while they learn about the birds.

Information: 963-6376; RSVP: 963-6300 or register at the River Valley Ranch House desk throughout November.

1, 2, 3 little birdies

And while we’re on the subject … it’s time, once again, for the Audubon Society’s Annual Christmas Bird Count. More than 55,000 observers from the Americas, Bermuda, West Indies and Pacific Islands participate each year in this all-day census of early-winter birds.

The Roaring Fork Chapter is recruiting volunteers for the Saturday, Dec. 13, count, which they will follow with a potluck supper.

While you’re at it, consider volunteering for the Great Backyard Bird Count, coming up Feb. 13-16.

Information: Dave Clark at 963-3479 or Linda Vidal at 704-9950. Information on the Aspen count: 925-5756.

Amore Realty ‘gives back’

David Hayes will step out in style at the next Special Olympics, thanks to Amore Realty’s “Giving Back” program. The Carbondale skier received a new brace for his ski boot and help with his expenses from the Carbondale Realtors.

Owner Lynn Kirchner said the “Giving Back” charitable program deducts a portion of every transaction as a donation to various civic organizations. “We love what we do and we love helping people. We honor the trust that has been put in us to help each individual and we are taking service to a higher level, one where integrity is always a priority,” said Kirchner.

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