In Brief: Voluntary Safe Gun Disposal Event |

In Brief: Voluntary Safe Gun Disposal Event

Voluntary Safe Gun Disposal Event

As part of his new Voluntary Safe Gun Disposal initiative, Pitkin County Sheriff Joe DiSalvo and the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office will launch a Voluntary Gun Disposal program on Oct. 2 from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. in the Galena Plaza, located in downtown Aspen next to the Pitkin County Courthouse. 

All weapons voluntarily relinquished to the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office will undergo a routine check to determine if they have been used in a previous crime. Criminally-linked guns will be retained as evidence, and all other guns will be destroyed, officials said.

“During my last 12 years as sheriff, I have found that there are many people in our community who have inherited guns that are no longer functioning, or that they do not want,” DiSalvo said. “Historically, we haven’t been able to accept them for disposal.”

Acquisition of a federal firearms license from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives allows the Sheriff’s Office to accept and destroy firearms properly, the sheriff said.

“In turn, we are eliminating the chance of these guns hurting someone or being used in a crime,” he said. “Safe gun storage, ownership and disposal is essential.”

Guns must be delivered unloaded and locked in the trunk of your vehicle or kept in the back, and a deputy will remove the gun. A government-issued photo ID is required. After the event, people are asked to call the Sheriff’s Office ahead of time to arrange the disposal of their unwanted ammunition and/or firearms. 

Roaring Fork Deer Herd Edging Up

Julie Mao, a Colorado Parks and Wildlife biologist, told the Garfield County Board of Commissioners that mule deer herd management plans for data analysis units (DAUs) 13 (Roaring Fork Valley), 43 (east side of the Flat Tops Wilderness), 12 (North Grand Mesa) and 41 (Garfield County west of Rifle and some of Mesa County) are being updated.

“In certain areas of the Maroon Bells, permits are going to be required for backcountry use,” she said. “That has been driven by pressure between recreationists. When it gets to that point where it’s too crowded for people, it’s way too crowded for wildlife.”

CPW’s updated population objective in DAU 13 is 7,000 to 9,000 animals, of which the unit has recently been in the lower part of the range.

“It’s slowly creeping up, but we’re hopeful that, with regulating recreation and getting people to adhere to seasonal closures, maybe that population can creep up to that 7,000 level,” Mao said.
She noted that chronic-wasting disease is a major concern in DAU 43 and not prevalent in DAU 13. Testing of animals in DAU 43 became mandatory in 2020, and the prevalence rate was 14%; CPW’s goal is at or less than 5%, and animals that contract CWD typically die within two years, she added.

“It’s going to persist in our environment, but, as demonstrated in other herds, if we can target the age and sex class that is most likely to carry it, bucks and specifically older bucks, then we can control it through harvest management,” Mao said.

Kids Arts and Reading Fest on Tap

Local early childhood literacy nonprofit Raising A Reader Aspen to Parachute will hold its first Children’s Arts and Literacy Festival at the Glenwood Springs Public Library on Oct. 22 from 2-5 p.m. Partnering with the Glenwood Springs Public Library, the organization will provide an afternoon of storytelling, arts and crafts and music exploration free to families. While activities will be geared toward children 0-8 years old, all are welcome. 

“We are so excited to celebrate the joy of reading along with the arts during this event,” said Suzanne Wheeler-Del Piccolo, executive director. “Arts and literacy go hand and hand, and many local organizations were excited to participate in this event to celebrate arts and literacy for our youngest children.”

Local children’s authors will be reading their books throughout the event. Children can also participate in arts and crafts, jump on the Rosybelle bus, try the instrument petting zoo and get their faces painted. According to Wheeler-Del Piccolo, each child will receive a book bag with a free book and other swag from individual booths. 

Five local authors — Nancy Bo Flood, Lisa Dancing-Light, Kathy Hegberg, Jill Sheeley and Deb Williams — will be present to read their books, answer questions about their writing and sign autographs.

Sopris Lodge Names Executive Director

Sopris Lodge at Carbondale, the newest retirement community in the Roaring Fork Valley for seniors aged 55-plus, announced that Selina Sims-Steele has been named executive director. She will oversee Sopris Lodge’s day-to-day operations.

Selina Sims-Steele

She joined Sopris Lodge’s leadership team in 2020 and was the business office manager and human resources manager before being promoted. 

She has three decades of experience in senior care. She previously was an executive director at another senior living community. She has a bachelor’s degree in applied science and is a certified dementia specialist and assisted living administrator, and she has also sold real estate in the Roaring Fork Valley. 

Located at 295 Rio Grande Avenue, Sopris Lodge at Carbondale is a Colorado-based retirement community offering independent living, assisted living and memory care residences in the Roaring Fork Valley. Sopris Lodge at Carbondale is managed by WellAge Senior Living.


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