Continuing the Crook County News Since 1884

Articles from the January 14, 2021 edition


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  • First phase of vaccine program now complete

    Sarah Pridgeon|Jan 14, 2021

    Crook County Public Health completed the first phase of COVID-19 vaccinations at the end of last week and will be moving on to the next tier of candidates on the state’s priority list. The phase 1a vaccination tier included front-line workers who are either most at risk of exposure to the virus or most likely to pass it on to people who are more vulnerable to its effects. This ranged from hospital and public health staff, EMS and fire personnel and law enforcement to home and residential i...

  • Commissioners reluctant to form solid waste district

    Sarah Pridgeon|Jan 14, 2021

    The commissioners intend to decide in February what should be done about the imminent closure of the last remaining landfill in Crook County. According to Mayor Dick Claar of Moorcroft, the formation of a solid waste district is the only way to convince the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) that the county is serious in its efforts to move forward. However, there was reluctance during last week’s meeting to create a formal district. Commissioner Kelly Dennis expressed concern that doing so would place the decision-making with the d...

  • Law enforcement contract begins

    Sarah Pridgeon|Jan 14, 2021

    To mark the transition between the dissolution of the Sundance Police Department and the beginning of a contract with the Crook County Sheriff’s Office to provide law enforcement coverage for the city, Sheriff Jeff Hodge attended last week’s council meeting flanked by numerous members of his department. The council announced in September that, with Police Chief Marty Noonan intending to retire at the end of the year, it was looking into the idea of entering into a contract for law enf...

  • Two fatal crashes reported on I-90

    Jan 14, 2021

    Wyoming Highway Patrol has announced that two fatal crashes took place on the interstate on January 8, leading to the deaths of 60-year-old Eric J. Carbaugh of Beulah and 27-year-old Keelie A. Garvin of Gillette. Speeding too fast for road conditions is being investigated as a possible contributing factor in both incidents. The first crash occurred on I-90 east of Sundance, at around milepost 201. It was called in at 8:02 a.m. as a one-vehicle rollover. According to a statement from Wyoming...

  • New council gets to work

    Sarah Pridgeon|Jan 14, 2021

    The year began for the Sundance City Council with a ceremony to swear in Randy Stevenson as a new member of the council and Joe Wilson as a returning councilman. Mayor Paul Brooks thanked outgoing council member Jana McLean for her service. Appointments were made for the year, all of them continuations from the previous year, including Council Member Brad Marchant as mayor pro tem, Kathy Lenz as clerk-treasurer and emergency management coordinator, Mac Erickson as public works director and...

  • Changes expected for Winterfest

    Sarah Pridgeon|Jan 14, 2021

    A fixture of winter for downtown visitors, the Sundance Winter Festival has been a popular event since 2015. The loss of its volunteer organizers, however, could spell the end of the festivities in their original form. Clerk Treasurer Kathy Lenz reported to the Sundance City Council last week that efforts have been made to find replacements for Reggie Gaylord and Steve Lenz. Between them, she said, the pair have volunteered “hundreds of hours” towards the organization of the event. “We just haven’t had any takers,” Lenz said, suggestin...

  • Michael Pat Mackey

    Jan 14, 2021

    Michael Pat Mackey was born January 27, 1953 and passed away January 3, 2021, in Rapid City, South Dakota. A memorial service was held January 9, 2021, at Kirk Funeral Home. A burial of cremated remains will take place in the spring in Hillview Cemetery at Isabel, South Dakota. The family moved around a bit during his younger years before settling down in Draper and Ft. Pierre, South Dakota, where he went to primary school. He graduated from Stanley County High School in 1971. He then attended M...

  • Ruth Marie Gurkowski

    Jan 14, 2021

    Ruth Marie Gurkowski passed away peacefully in Cheyenne, WY on December 22, 2020 at the age of 90. She was born to Clyde and Nettie Roadifer on May 19, 1930 in Sundance, WY. Until recent years, she lived in Sundance her entire life. She attended local country schools and graduated from “Old Stoney” in Sundance. Ruth worked various jobs in Sundance for most of her career, including being a telephone operator, waitressing at the Elk Horn Café, working at the Model Grocery and retiring from Durf...

  • Rita Joyce Smithburg

    Jan 14, 2021

    Rita Joyce Smithburg passed away at home in Sundance, Wyoming on the morning of January 4th, at the age of 76. Rita was born on August 21, 1944 in El Centro, CA to Wilmar and Joyce (Lingscheit) Ernst. When Wilmar was discharged from the marines the family settled in Draper, SD, where Rita grew up and graduated from high school in 1962. On July 21, 1962, she married John Feddersen. From this union were born two daughters, Joni and Juli. In 1969, they settled in Estelline, SD, where Rita began...

  • George "Durand" Grenier

    Jan 14, 2021

    George “Durand” Grenier passed away January 4, 2021, at home surrounded by his loving family. He was born on March 14, 1925, in Hulett, Wyoming, to George and Elizabeth (Freeborn) Grenier. When he was three months old, the family moved to Devils Tower, Wyoming, where his father established the first store and post office at the entrance to Devils Tower National Monument. He attended grade school in an old log cabin known as Campstool School at Devils Tower, and then Sundance High School in Sun...

  • Letters to the Editor

    Jan 14, 2021

    Dear Editor, Holy crap, who knew! There really is a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. I discovered this after attending the January 6 Crook County Commissioners meeting, at which they held a hearing concerning the request to establish a county wide Solid Waste Tax Assessment District to support Moorcroft’s city dump. I was astounded to hear Moorcroft’s Mayor state at this meeting, that if only we would agree to access all of the property owners in Crook County an additional three mills of tax, on top of what they may already be paying to d...

  • This Side of the Pond

    Sarah Pridgeon|Jan 14, 2021

    It’s common for newspapers to publish a “review of the year” each December or January – you may have seen exactly such a thing a couple of weeks ago in your very own Sundance Times. I was not, however, expecting journalists across my homeland to simultaneously come up with an unexpected twist on the old classic. For reasons I haven’t been able to ascertain, a number of local newspapers in Britain have eschewed the usual wrap-up of important local events and replaced it with a ranked listing o...

  • Kid gets new owner

    Sarah Pridgeon|Jan 14, 2021

    The City of Sundance has agreed to take ownership of the statue of the Sundance Kid that originally sat outside the courthouse and has now been moved to the park under construction next to Old Stoney. The process of moving the statue required a new contract to be drawn up between the city and the Sundance Chamber of Commerce. The county was involved in the original agreement because the statue was situated on its property but, as this is no longer the case, did not need to be included in the updated agreement. However, said Clerk Treasurer Kath...

  • Investigation complete for highway crash

    Sarah Pridgeon|Jan 14, 2021

    Wyoming Highway Patrol has completed an investigation into a traffic accident that took place on December 30 on Highway 24 in the vicinity of milepost 18. “The cause of the crash was not maintaining a lane of travel,” says Lieutenant Tim Boumeester. The incident involved a Dodge pickup that was traveling eastbound on the highway. “It had just passed a log truck when the driver encountered icy roads, approximately 1900 feet in length to where the crash occurred,” he reports. “The driver of the Dodge pickup lost control of her vehicle and began...

  • Memorial trees touted for new park

    Sarah Pridgeon|Jan 14, 2021

    The Sundance City Council has agreed to look into potential ways to incorporate memorial trees into the new park under construction next to Old Stoney. Clerk Treasurer Kathy Lenz reported last week that she has been approached by people who have lost loved ones and are interested in commemorating them. At this time, Lenz said at least three people had expressed a desire for a memorial program; she felt that more people would be interested once they had heard about the possibility. Lenz brought the question before the council because the city...

  • Timber sale aims to improve forest health near Sundance

    Jan 14, 2021

    The Bearlodge Ranger District of the Black Hills National Forest is working with Wyoming State Forestry Division to treat insect- and disease-infected trees, reduce hazardous fuels and restore or improve forest, watershed or rangeland conditions and wildlife habitat. The Wonder 1 Timber Sale has been announced as part of this collaborative effort and by utilizing the Good Neighbor Authority (GNA), which was authorized in the 2018 Farm Bill. The sale will treat almost 900 acres of public land that will provide an estimated 5,499 CCF in saw...

  • Lummis says she wanted to 'shine light' on election irregularities

    Nick Reynolds, Casper Star-Tribune Via Wyoming News Exchange|Jan 14, 2021

    CASPER — Breaking with a vast majority of her colleagues in the Senate, Sen. Cynthia Lummis voted to overturn election results in Pennsylvania, one of two states being contested by conservative members of Congress early Thursday morning. Lummis’ vote – which represented one of just a handful of dissenting votes in the 92-8 result – lent credence to unsubstantiated claims by President Donald Trump that the vote there was rigged in favor of President-elect Joe Biden. But it also set her apart from most of the holdout Republicans who pledged...

  • Wyoming News Briefs

    From Wyoming News Exchange Newspapers|Jan 14, 2021

    Wyoming wolf-hunting season comes to close PINEDALE (WNE) — The 2020 wolf-hunting season in Wyoming’s trophy game management area closed as the New Year began last week, with only 31 gray wolves taken from a limit of 51. Last year, Wyoming Game and Fish sold 1987 licenses to resident hunters and 234 to nonresidents for a total of 2,221. All but one of ten Wyoming Game and Fish hunt areas closed on Dec. 31; Hunt Area 13, Whiskey Mountain, remains open through March 31 with one wolf reported taken from a quota of three. Only Hunt Area 10, Rim...

  • Bulldogs get back on the hardwood, notch three wins

    Rebecca Maupin|Jan 14, 2021

    SHS Boys After a long winter break the Sundance boys basketball team was back on the floor with a busy weekend. Adding three more victories to their record, the Bulldogs were able to overcome the Newell Irrigators, Pine Bluffs Hornets and Glenrock Herders. It was senior night on Thursday as the Sundance Bulldogs hosted the Newell Irrigators. “They’re such a great group of guys, they’ve done a great job helping to build the culture of unselfishness and hard work,” Coach Olson stated of his sen...

  • Fourth and fifth grade students invited to participate in Arbor Day poster contest

    Jan 14, 2021

    Wyoming State Forestry Division and Wyoming Project Learning Tree (WY PLT) are teaming up again this year to hold the annual Wyoming State Arbor Day poster contest. This year Wyoming will celebrate its 133rd Arbor Day. The contest is open to all Wyoming fourth and fifth grade students, including home-schooled, private and public. Students are invited to create a poster no larger than 14 by 18 inches in size that depicts the theme “Trees: That’s WY.” The winner will receive $100, their framed poster and a plaque. The winner’s teacher will al...

  • CSC Honor Rolls

    Jan 14, 2021

    Chadron State College has announced the names of 328 students who qualified for the institution’s Fall 2020 President’s List with a 4.0 grade point average on a 4.0 scale. Crook County students on the list include Devin Hodges of Hulett and Parker Seeley of Sundance. Chadron State College has also announced the names of 332 students who qualified for the institution’s Fall 2020 Dean’s List with at least a 3.5 grade point average on a 4.0 scale. Crook County students on the list include Tate Allison of Moorcroft and Gabrielle Velder of Sundanc...

  • Crook County Sheriff's Office

    Jan 14, 2021

    Jan. 4 – Two VIN checks. Four traffic stops. Three assists to DFS. Two fingerprints. Threat call. Coroner call. Theft report. Assisted motorist. Business checks. Assisted Wyoming Highway Patrol. Business checks. Jan. 5 – Two VIN checks. Traffic stop. Paper service. Fraud call. Trespassing. Abandoned vehicle. Two fingerprints. Traffic hazard. Civil assist. Assisted Moorcroft Police. Business checks. Jan. 6 – Two VIN checks. Nine traffic stops. Five paper services. Assisted Wyoming Highway Patrol. EMS page. Two fingerprints. Assisted motor...

  • Circuit Court

    Jan 14, 2021

    Speeding – Mark C. Peters, SD, 90/75, $135; Carla Jobgen, SD, 87/75, $120; Joshua Young, WA, 89/80, $103; Kase P. Gustafson, Moorcroft, 86/75, $115; Michael Greene, UT, 100/75, $185; Sergei O’Sullivan, MT, 94/70, $180; Connor Crane, SD, 85/75, $105; David McRae, GA, 91/80, $115; David Bufkin, CA, 91/70, $165; Elaine Elizabeth, SD, 81/70, $115; Brian L. Vandrey, IA, 91/80, $100; Delan Leblanc, Gillette, 74/65, $103; Emalee Sweet, Newcastle, 84/70, $130; Timothy Masias, CO, 79/70, $103; John Manus, CA, 86/80, $97; Aaron Poulson, UT, 88/75, $12...

  • This Week at Your Library

    Kim Heaster|Jan 14, 2021

    The library will be closed Monday, January 18, for Martin Luther King Jr. Day. The library doors are open. We are still doing curbside and in town home delivery if you would prefer not to come inside. In compliance with the statewide mask order, masks are now required to enter the library. If you do not have a mask, one will be provided. Children under 13 MUST be accompanied by an adult. Two computers are available for adults. Teen and Children’s computers are not available. Displays: If you have a collection that you would like the world (...

  • Peek at the Past

    Jan 14, 2021

    1 Years Ago Jan. 13, 1921 On a recent visit to Sundance W. D. Fisher mentioned to the Times that the present snowfall on the Upton road constitutes the one blockade which at present ties up 600 miles of highway – from Mitchell, S.D. to Billings, Mont. He noted that several cars at Rapid City, en route to Wyoming and Montana points, were to be abandoned or a detour made through North Dakota. It is high time some action was taken on this matter. Some of the officials think that snow fences will not operate on this stretch of road but other h...

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