News in Brief
November 16, 2006
Help feed a family in needA program that’s helped low-income families enjoy a good Thanksgiving dinner over the last 20 years needs help collecting and distributing food.Representatives for the Thanksgiving Food Baskets program will be collecting canned and nonperishable goods outside the El Jebel City Market during daylight hours Saturday and Sunday. They will collect anything associated with Thanksgiving – green beans, corn, fixings for pumpkin pies, stuffing mix and other items. They also need cash contributions to buy turkeys closer to Thanksgiving Day.The program has been coordinated for the last decade by the Colleagues in Christ Ministerial Alliance, a coalition of midvalley churches. Marie Gasau, minister at the Basalt Community United Methodist Church, said Jack and Ruth Gredig started the program 20 years ago. They turned it over to the ministerial alliance after a decade when it became too big for them to handle.Numerous school and civic groups assist the ministerial alliance with the program.Gasau said food was distributed to 82 families last year in the Basalt school district, and organizers expect similar numbers this year. Officials with the health and human-services departments of Eagle and Pitkin counties, the Basalt Family Resource Center and the school district recommend families.”We know these are folks who really need the baskets,” Gasau said.The recipients remain confidential. Families that need help can pick up applications from county offices.Gasau said people who want to contribute money to the program can send checks to Thanksgiving Basket Project, in care of Basalt Community United Methodist Church, P.O. Box 1159, Basalt.Boxes packed with food can be dropped off at the Eagle County Community Center in El Jebel and in the foyers of all participating churches.The project also needs volunteers to help pack and distribute boxes starting at noon Wednesday, Nov. 22. Volunteers can come to the Methodist Church, 0167 Holland Hills Road, in the Holland Hills subdivision east of Basalt.Summit County eyes special burn permitsIn light of the growing pine beetle infestation in Summit County, the county’s wildfire mitigation office is poised to begin issuing special burn permits that would allow property owners to torch larger pieces of slash in the winter months.”(The current permits) are designed for individual property owners to be able to burn slash that they’ve taken off their property; this is a much different animal,” said Lake Dillon Fire-Rescue public information officer Brandon Williams.Right now, people are permitted to burn slash no larger than 2.5 inches in diameter, but that measurement may be boosted up to 9 inches to provide property owners with an alternative method to dispose of downed trees killed by the mountain pine beetle.Other options for clearing away the debris include offsite shipping, which can be costly, and chipping, which can be ecologically challenging, Williams said.In Summit County, special burn permits will be issued on a case-by-case basis, and only when specific weather conditions exist, Williams said.Once a permit is issued, homeowners must follow strict guidelines pertaining to the burn. For example, the fire must be lit in the early morning so it’s out by nightfall and must be monitored at all times. Extinguishing capabilities, such as a bulldozer to knock down or cover up a fire that starts to get out of control, must be onsite, and the fire needs to be set on flat ground away from structures.Fire officials have not yet decided on how much the special burn permits will cost. Regular permits are free. (Summit Daily News)Vandals trash Gypsum homeA Gypsum homeowner repainted his vandalized door and the following day started cleaning again when the door was redecorated with silly string, frosting and eggs, according to an Eagle County sheriff’s report.There was no damage, but vandals sprayed silly string in a swirl pattern on the door, coated the handle in frosting and bounced eggs off the door.Some neighbor kids reported seeing several high school teenagers in black hoodies walking along the street the same day of the vandalism. The teenagers sprayed silly string in the kids’ yard, but the kids ran off the teenagers.That vandalism occurred Nov. 8, nearly two months after the first attack. The case is closed due to a lack of leads. (Vail Daily)The Aspen Times, Aspen, Colo.