My favorite athlete is Novak Djokovic. He is an exceptional professions tennis player ranked No. 1 in the world. Being a tennis player, my favorite sport to watch is tennis. I first saw him playing in Wimbledon when I was younger (before he was No. 1) and the way he carried himself on and off the court amazed me, and since then, he has been my favorite player.
I tend to listen to music just so I can zone. Focus on what I want to do and how I want to execute my plan. I like to block out the outside world and focus on how I want to approach my match.
I like all types of music depending on my mood. I will listen to the pop songs if I want to sing, some rap if I'm just in a mood, maybe some country if I feel like it, and if I'm having a hard day I will turn on Christian music. My favorite artist is Rihanna. I love her voice and her looks. She just amazes me with her talent.
My favorite book is "House Rules" by Jodi Piccoult. I enjoy the story line as well as the way she wrote it. Each chapter starts with a court case summary that relates to the chapter. The book is a huge mystery until the end, with forensic science, as well as some humor.]]>
McDougal and Wildcats assistant coach Jamie Thompson went on a cultural-exchange baseball trip to Japan in July. There were 19 players from Arvada West, one from Heritage, one from Cherry Creek and a player from California.
The players housed with host families for three nights and then six nights in student housing. The group played games against Japanese teams in Fukuoka, Japan, and visited cultural sites in the area, such as the Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Memorial.
Nine days were spent in Japan and since the return trip went through Hong Kong of the People's Republic of China and the players spent three days visiting the attractions.
"Our kids loved it," McDougal said. "They really enjoyed the trip. It opened new cultures and new experiences."
McDougal hopes the respect the Japanese have for baseball sticks with the players for a while.
Japanese players take off their caps and bow while talking to a coach and stand at attention during team meetings. If a Japanese player is walked during game, he lays down his bat instead of tossing it on his way to first base.
"The dedication they have for baseball is incredible," McDougal said. "The biggest thing was the culture of baseball and the respect they have for the game.
"They work incredibly hard. The kids were saying, `We need to do this and that.' "
Long way from home
Senior setter Jasmine Schmidt has left her family to play volleyball this season at Chaparral.
Schmidt's family moved to Raleigh, North Carolina, during the summer, but Jasmine, who will graduate early, came back to Colorado and is living with the family of teammate MaKenna Davis.
"For sure I won't stay past December, but will probably leave (for North Carolina) after the (volleyball) season," said Schmidt, who plans to play at Palm Beach Atlantic University in Florida.
Heating up the fall
Legacy senior catcher Emily Taggart is off to a hot start to the softball season.
In the Lightning's first two games, she has gone 3-for-4 with a double, two home runs and eight runs batted in.
Legacy defeated Rock Canyon and Cherry Creek.
ThunderRidge pitchers senior Emily Morris and junior Rachel Bean were exceptional in three opening wins.
Morris allowed three hits, one run and struck of 10 on Aug. 24 in a five-inning win over Columbine and followed with a five-hit shutout over Grand Junction Central Aug. 27 when she fanned seven batters.
Bean struck out five and was touched for only three hits in a 3-1 win over Fruita Monument Aug. 26.
In Jefferson County 4A/5A golf after two rounds, Valor Christian and Lakewood have both charged out of the gates.
Valor has four of the top eight golfers in average scores after tournaments at Deer Creek and Foothills in the 4A competition.
Lakewood has three of the top six in the 5A tourneys at Deer Creek and Hyland Hills.
Griffin Barela of Lakewood had a two-round average of 70.5 in the 5A tournaments followed by teammates Jack Castiglia at 74.5 and Grayden Wolfe at 75.5.]]>
The festival will be held in the lower-level conference room, with the keynote speaker, Gov. John Hickenlooper, kicking off proceedings at 10:15 a.m. with a talk about his new book, released in May, "The Opposite of Woe: My Life in Beer and Politics."
There will be six panels of authors discussing their books in the areas of mysteries, sports, poetry, relationships, cooking and history; a panel on getting published and special presentations by writers Margaret Coel and Stephen Singular; famed landscape photographer and nature writer John Fielder; Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Elizabeth Fenn ("Encounters at the Heart of the World" --; about the Mandan people); Colorado Poet Laureate Joseph Hutchison and former Laureate Davis Mason; former Broncos vice president Jim Saccomano and former Denver Post columnist Dick Kreck, who has recently published "Rich People Behaving Badly."
Meet the authors in the exhibit hall and check schedules, when ready, for individual presentations in two break-out rooms --; about every 30 minutes. (Not available at press time.)
If you go
The main Denver Public Library is located at 10 W. 14th Ave. (at Broadway). Parking is available in the Cultural Garage on 12th Avenue or at meters on surrounding streets. The Colorado Book Festival starts at 10 a.m. with a talk at 10:15 by Gov. John Hickenlooper about his new book, "The Opposite of Woe: My Life in Beer and Politics." Admission is free and the event is open to the public. The library's Conference Center is on the ground level and authors will have an allocated space to display and sell their books. Information: Colorado Book Festival section of the Colorado Authors' League website, coloradoauthors.org.]]>
Certainly not our students or taxpayers! The $535 million bond and $33 million mill levy overrides on the Jeffco ballot move nearly all sixth graders to middle school. It adds turf to high school fields and less than half of the $535 million will actually go to fixing up older schools, which in itself will cost $500 million.
The $535 million adds 120 classrooms. Does this make sense when school enrollment in Jeffco is down? Enrollment in Jeffco has not grown over the last decade. Why add capacity when there are schools in Jeffco that sit empty? Why are no bond resources allocated to improving student performance? So why are taxpayers being asked to pay, with interest, nearly a billion dollars to build new classrooms?
Why are taxpayers being asked to raise their taxes $33 million a year for operating costs when none of it will go to hiring new teachers, zero will go to reducing class sizes, and very little will go to increasing teacher compensation? Our property taxes are already going up because our houses are appreciating. Why are we being asked for more when Jeffco spending has grown each year for the last five years?
Doesn't it seem a no on 3B, Jeffco's nearly billion-dollar bond, and a no vote on 3A, the $33 million mill levy override, would be appropriate? Perhaps at that point the school board can rethink the situation. When we have graduating students who have no idea how our country works and can't read and write at grade level, shouldn't we be putting the money where it belongs, into teaching and the educational process?
William F Hineser,
$535 Million Bond to FixAging Schools in Jeffco?
Actually, less than half of the $535 Million will actually go to fixing up older schools. The cost of moving sixth graders to middle school is $100 Million and $30 Million will be spent on second gyms and artificial turf for high schools. No joke -- $30 million dollars on fake grass! $50 million goes to building two new schools and over 22 percent is allocated to potential cost overruns.
I know schools need new paint, carpet and windows and I want all schools to have safe and healthy learning environments. But I do not want to spend the next 25 years paying for new carpet. I would not take out a 25 year loan to replace those items in my home, so a school district should not either. Jeffco schools have over a 1 billion dollar budget. They need to work within that huge budget to maintain schools and not burden tax payers with huge amounts of debt. And for the record, the real cost of this bond is $987 million dollars, principal plus interest! Tax payers - demand a fiscally responsible bond and mill levy override. Vote NO on 3A and 3B in November, Vote NO against wasteful and reckless spending.
Stephen R. Alley Jr.
Improve Schools in Jeffco! But not with $450 million in interest on the debt
I understand many schools need improvements and updates, I get that.But how those dollars are allocated in the $535 million Bond and $33 million Mill Levy Override is really disturbing.Included are building super-sized schools and adding 120 classrooms on to elementary and middle schools, yet enrollment in Jeffco is not up and there are schools that sit empty.The Bond will add artificial turf and additional gym space to some high schools.Is that really a prudent financial move?In 25 years, the artificial turf won't be good anymore and that is how long tax payers will be asked to payoff $987 million, which is the true cost to taxpayers for paying off the bond.
The Facility planning team in Jeffco lists that the total facility deficiency in schools is $520 million.With the Bond alone, the district could afford to make facility improvements at nearly every school in Jeffco.But as it is proposed, less than half of the $535 million will be allocated to improving facilities.Tax payers will be asked again for more money in the future to fix aging schools.In fact, board member Brad Rupert wanted to make sure not all the building deficiencies were fixed this time so tax payers can be burdened with funding another bond.
Think about that, with the proposed $535 million bond we could fix nearly every Jeffco school for that amount of money.Instead, the plan will add classrooms to elementary and middle schools, leaving 24 elementary schools under 300 students. This Jeffco school board has been talking about closing schools with enrollment under 300 students.The plan also adds 2nd gyms and artificial turf to high schools - really how does that help improve student achievement? The plan also reduces funding for title one students moving to middle schools. How is that good?The plan does not address funding needed for schools with center programs such as gifted and talented and autism programs.
This plan does not free up money to go back into the classrooms, it does not allocate money for student achievement.On the contrary, it will cost a lot of money - in the tune of $987 million when you add interest and an additional $33 million every year.
Vote NO 3B, the Jeffco School Bond and Vote NO on 3A, the Mill Levy Override in November!
Jeffco bond will more thandouble bond payoff taxes
Have you looked at your property tax bill recently? Many of us have our mortgage companies pay our taxes so we rarely look at the tax assessment statements. Well, now might be a good time to pull out that statement. You will notice that you pay $6.7 million for the school district bond redemption. Each mill raises about $7 million a year. The bond repayment that Jeffco is proposing will have its largest annual payments of $70 million. That means it will take 10 mills to make that $70 million payoff.
Worse yet, your new board is now paying off the $70 million in certificates of participation (COPs) that they used to build the new school in Candelas and the addition to Sierra (without voter approval). So in addition to the $70 million in payments we have to make to pay off the COP, we are being asked to make an additional $987 million in payments to pay off a $535 million bond, plus we are being asked to pay an additional $33 million to bulk up school administration. So all that adds up to $1.09 billion in new taxes. And, worse yet, the new board wants a 25-year bond with significant underpayments for the first 10 years. Which means our children will be making the huge debt payments in years 11-25.
How can we look at our children and know that we are passing on to them this huge debt burden of over $1 billion?
Voting "No" on 3A and 3B is a no vote for more taxes.
Adults can help children form these virtues by setting an example at home and helping children practice some basics.
Words and actions matter
Act polite and you'll be polite. Using words like "please, thank you, no thanks and excuse me" with a kind voice set a tone of niceness and respect. Adults can help children use words to ask for help or express feelings. Teach the difference between telling an adult if something is not right, bullying or unsafe and being a constant "tattle-tale." Practicing these suggestions around the home makes a difference but takes patience, say psychologists.
Use kind language. Give sincere compliments and express concern. Talk about how kindness makes others feel good and then they are more likely to be kind to you. Adults may need to remind that some words kids hear are off limits and inappropriate in your family and at school.
Help children practice listening silently when someone else is talking and looking at the person's face. Adults can kneel or sit down to children's height when talking with them to show how this is done. Role play with stuffed animals or practice at mealtime and praise good listening.
Greet and say "good-bye" to people. Smile. Act enthusiastic and you'll be enthusiastic is a Dale Carnegie tip for a successful life.
Share and tidy up
You can start the sharing habit by asking your baby to share Cheerios. Little ones love this game. Cut treats in half to share or share space on the couch. Ask others if they want a treat or a piece of paper while getting supplies. Let another person go first if there is a tie for first in line. The water fountain will still be there.
Participate in helping to pick up toys, clothes and clearing the table. Make it a game by singing a pick-up song, playing favorite music, or having a contest as a part of an established routine. Point out when materials are picked up they are easier to find next time. This is known as a "kid reason."
Play games where taking turns is expected, like cards and Candyland. Practice "now your turn" at meal time, while sharing crayons or choosing a show.
Hang up clothing or backpacks. Make this easy by setting a good example and providing kid-friendly pegs and containers.
Demonstrate and practice inside, outside and whispering voices. There will be classmates who have not yet learned these virtues, but your kids can show them how it's done.]]>
"We are thrilled to have found this building for our Arvada location," said Denver Beer Co. Co-Founder Patrick Crawford. "Our Platte Street building was formerly a car service garage as well. It's going to be a blast to renovate another old garage on Olde Wadsworth and turn it into a vibrant and fun community hang-out. This building has several unique features to it, including beautiful vaulted ceilings. We are planning to preserve the historical character of the car dealership while breathing new life into the building."
The Arvada tap room will include 4,350 square feet of interior space to house a new seven barrel brew house created by Diversified Metal Engineering and a tasting room, plus 1,500 square feet of outdoor patio space in front of the building. It will feature long communal tables, large open garage doors, industrial finishes, and art from local artists. Denver Beer Co. is working with Genslar Architects for the building and interior design and will contract with Spectrum General Contractors for the construction
Prior to the recent vacancy, the building had been home to Car Quest for 35 years before the business closed in February.
Cathy Johnson, owner of the building, said she is looking forward to bringing more business up the street.
"There were three people interested in the building," Johnson said. "We picked the beer company because we feel like there's a lot of restaurants already and we wanted to do something different. And, they have good beer."
Denver Beer Co.'s Arvada location will have a dedicated brewer and brewing system with a similar menu concept of rotating beers that change with the seasons, a signature and exclusive Arvada beer, as well as the Denver Beer Co. flagship brews including Graham Cracker Porter, Incredible Pedal IPA, Sun Drenched Exploratory Ale, and rotating seasonals. Though the Arvada brew house will brew beers specifically for the Arvada community, the brewers at the Arvada location will collaborate and share recipes with the head brewers at Denver Beer Co.'s Platte Street tap room and production facilities.
Denver Beer Co. will hire a dedicated brewing team as well as new bar staff for the second location and estimates that the Arvada tap room will create eight to 10 full-time job equivalents for the Arvada community.
"Arvada is overjoyed to welcome the Denver Beer Co. to Olde Town," said Ryan Stachelski, director of the Arvada Economic Development Association. "Denver Beer Co.'s expansion adds to the critical mass of top tier eating and drinking establishments making Olde Town the place to be."
Denver Beer Co. co-founder, Charlie Berger said he is looking forward to joining the Arvada community.
He said, "We hope to make a positive impact in the community both economically, through the creation of new jobs, and from a community standpoint with the addition of a welcoming gathering place where friends can meet after a hike or for a round of trivia and enjoy good conversation over a pint or two of tasty, handcrafted beers."]]>
The weather provided a perfect temperature --; not too hot and not chilly --; for a free concert by the Jefferson Symphony Orchestra.
At least a couple hundred people filled the park, sitting on blankets or low-back chairs. The audience consisted of people of all ages and some well-behaved, music-loving dogs that sat faithfully next to their owners.
The free Summer Concert in the Park happens every year following the Golden Fine Arts Festival, but this year's turnout might be the largest audience the orchestra has seen in a long time, said Steve Mallinson, the orchestra's conductor.
It was a wonderful and enthusiastic crowd, he said. Which got the musicians excited, he added.
It's a thrill to perform in front of so many people, Mallinson said. "The orchestra performs well when they have a big crowd."
Audience members enjoyed some light classical fare as opening songs. Then the orchestra played some crowd favorites --; show tunes from "Mary Poppins," "Chicago" and "Cats."
Then, special guests the Ultraphonic Jazz Orchestra got a few couples on their feet dance.
"I loved it," said Sierra Farrar whose father Rodney plays the cello in the symphony orchestra. But, she added, "I've always loved park concerts. They're so inviting and family-oriented."
Wandering among the crowd was Popsicle the Polar Bear, the mascot for the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD). Popsicle, aka David Mejia, took pictures with children and passed out informational fliers on the organization's upcoming ballot issue to parents.
There are so many families in the Denver-metro area that would not be able to be involved with cultural and arts activities and facilities if free days were not offered, Mejia said.
All free days are sponsored by the SCFD, he said, which supports thousands of organizations.
"We have such a vibrant arts community" in the Front Range, Mejia said. "We need the arts."
Three-year-old Charles Mickey is a big symphony orchestra fan, his dad David said. The two have seen the Jefferson Symphony Orchestra perform a number of times, but this was their first time attending the outdoor concert in Parfet Park.
"So that was cool," David Mickey said.
The concert was a phenomenal event, he said. "It was world-class music in the town of Golden."]]>
The schools will find a date to pick up the game where it was halted. The team will take the field with Sheridan at bat and the Rams leading 13-7.
During the rain delay, Saints Coach Leroy Romero talked about this year's team.
"We are a pretty young team with only two seniors on the team and seven of our players who have never been on a competitive softball team before," the coach said. "For example I have two freshmen who will pitch for us. They had played some softball but I have been working with them on the fundamentals of pitching to help us in the high school competition."
He said he Jefferson was a senior-dominated team last year.
"Five of our seniors graduated and two girls transferred to another school so we are starting over," he said. "I like coaching this team because they are eager to learn about softball. I have 11 on the roster right now plus four more girls who are completing their paperwork so they can join us."
He said he will be doing a lot of coaching but he is pleased that the girls follow his instructions and work hard to improve their softball skills.
"We won't be a powerhouse team and, as a young team, there will be mistakes. But because the girls are willing to work so hard, I feel we get better every time we take the field," he said. "I expect we will continue to get better and we could surprise some opponents when they play us."
Rosemary Gonzales is the varsity catcher this season.
"This is my fourth year playing softball for our school," the senior said. "I usually played infield or outfield positions but I always wanted to get a chance to catch. Last year, when the starting catcher didn't come to a practice and the backup catcher was late, I asked the coach if I could catch. I did well enough I became the backup catcher last season."
She said her coach had really helped her develop her catching skills but said she knows she has to keep working to constantly get better.
"Catching is a great position to play," she said. "You don't just stand around because you are involved in just about every play in the game."
The next home game for the Saints is at 4:30 p.m. Aug. 31 against St. Mary's of Colorado Springs. The games are open to the public and there is no charge for admission.]]>
This year's event was at the Lamar Station Plaza and Rocky Mountain College of Art + Design, highlighted six new murals and brought together some of the area's best arts vendors and food trucks.
"At the first MuralFest last year we had around 2,000 people, and this year we're hoping for 5,000," said Melanie Stover, creative director for 40 West Arts
There was live music throughout the day, beer was served by the new WestFax Brewery, The Edge Theater performed a song from its first ever musical, "Murder Ballad," and Mayor Adam Paul was joined by Tom Yockey, president of Broad Street realty to celebrate the grand reopening of the Lamar Station Plaza.
"Broad Street is really excited to be a part of all of this," Yockey said.
The event was laid out like a city, with vendors setting up in districts, according to Kevin Yoshida, managing principal of The Abo Group and 40 West leader.
"It parallels the growth we're seeing on the corridor," he said. "We want people to have a more dense experience, with more excitement."
While hanging out at the festival, we spoke to organizers, civic leaders and visitors, and here are the best things we heard:
1. Nick Arnold, visitor: "I was looking for something free and fun to do with my son, Eli, and didn't realize how much this area had been redone. I thought it would be fun for Eli to do some craft stuff and see the murals."
2. Bill Marino, 40 West Arts chair: "We wanted this second festival to demonstrate more of the momentum we're seeing along the corridor. This year we have more of everything - a bigger space, more vendors and more art."
3. Adam Paul, Lakewood mayor: "This is all part of a vision that started in 2005, and it's been through great partnerships that we've got to where we are now. And this plaza area is the epicenter of all the great things happening in our community."
4. Melanie Stover: "MuralFest parallels the aims of 40 West to bring culture to the community. The engagement you have here is so special, and we want to give them an experience they couldn't get anywhere else."
5. Tom Yockey: "This is a celebration of a lot of hard work from a lot of people. It's been an investment by Broad Street, the arts community and City of Lakewood to get this area where it is. And this is just the beginning."
6. Kevin Yoshida: "What if we had a more dense core, where everyone supports each other? We thought that would be a good way to organize and lay out the festival. To give people this experience up close."]]>