It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas here in Paonia, Colo. Actually, it's mostly been bone-dry and weirdly warm, like most of the West, but at least HCN's hometown has put up some lights and decorations, and over the weekend we got a slight sprinkling of snow. It's also time for another publishing break in our 22-issue-per-year schedule. Look for the next issue of HCN around Jan. 21. And in the meantime, be sure to check out our website, hcn.org, for regular newsy blog posts and fresh opinion pieces. Here's wishing you holiday merriment and abundance -- and most of all, more snow! Unless, of course, you're one of our Florida readers.
On Dec. 5, we held our annual Holiday Open House. Dozens of residents and readers turned out to nosh appetizers, enjoy local wine, and hobnob with staff. Some lucky raffle winners took home special HCN socks, T-shirts, or tote bags. We all enjoyed the chance to see old friends and make new ones. Thanks to all who turned out; these gatherings get better every year.
Ann Dee Allen, a former journalist from Milwaukee, Wis., and her high school pal Lisa Eckert, of nearby Grand Junction, stopped by the office on a sunny day just before Thanksgiving. Each had her own reason for visiting us: as superintendent of Colorado National Monument, Lisa's very interested in public lands and natural resource management. And, being new to the area, she wanted to check out Paonia. Ann first learned of HCN in journalism school and had been meaning to drop by in person for some time. "We're journalism tourists," she said.
Longtime subscriber Terry Alexander, from Salida, Colo., came to say hello while in the area to provide an expert opinion on the restoration of the old Hotchkiss Barn close to Paonia. Terry owns and operates Stonecraft LLC, a masonry restoration company. He learned the trade from his father 40 years ago and has worked in both Texas and Colorado. After relocating to Salida in 2007, Terry launched Stonecraft. Salida has the largest historic district in the state and Terry saw the need for a masonry business specializing in preservation and restoration of historic buildings and structures all around Colorado.
Alert reader Penelope Blair of Missoula, Mont., noted that in the Nov. 12 edition of "Heard Around the West," we referred to Lewiston, Mont. "There is a Lewistown in Montana," she wrote, "but no Lewiston: That place is in Idaho on the Snake River." Oops. Thanks, Penelope.
In "The Port Gamble Predicament," our Nov. 26 cover story, erroneous primary source material led the author to explain that "Teekalet" is the S'Klallam name for the site where Port Gamble now sits and that it means "brightness of the noonday sun." "Teekalet" is actually an English transliteration of the original S'Klallam word which more closely translated to "middle of the day place." HCN regrets the errors.