They were looking to buy some property but needed to find means to justify it. In their research, they discovered alpacas and fell in love with them. "But because we couldn't afford to get into alpacas and buy the property, we got the alpacas," Diane said.
The Cribleys started on their two acres in Windsor and dubbed it Falkor Ranch. The name was inspired by one of the main characters from the movie "The NeverEnding Story," Falkor the Luck Dragon. When they moved to Elizabeth 13 years ago, the name followed. There are 22 alpacas at the ranch.
Alpacas are part of the camelid family, resembling both llamas and camels. They are significantly smaller with adult alpacas ranging in weight from 120-200 pounds. They are valued for their fiber, or "fleece," which contains no lanolin and is considered hypoallergenic.
Diane said that "in the past year or two there seems to be a huge resurgence of the fiber arts. (People) needle felt and create wonderful things, to felt the fiber into different artistic creations."
Falkor Ranch's main product is fleece, which is available as raw fleece, in rovings --; a long, narrow bundle --; and whole blankets.
For Diane, the appeal of alpacas has always been more about the animals rather than their fiber.
"They are the most gentle, mellow, relaxing animals," she said. "In fact, I know a lot of people who, after 9/11, just went out and sat with their alpacas, just to try and gain some peace in their heart."
Although alpacas don't make good house pets, they are family friendly.
"They're great with children," Diane said. "They just intuitively care and are sensitive to them."
To buy an alpaca costs anywhere from $300 to $5,000. Because of her concern for their well-being, Diane won't sell an alpaca if it's going to be the only one at its new home. "It's very stressful for the alpaca," Diane said.
The Cribley's dedication to their alpacas have led them to become experts in every facet of their care. "There are many misconceptions about appropriate feed," Diane said. "People don't realize that alpacas are borderline diabetic and can't produce the insulin needed to process sugar. So people think they are being nice and giving their alpacas ... molasses, and it's not good for them." Many owners also feed their alpacas beet pulp, but the form in which it is sold makes it essentially a waste product full of toxins.
The Cribleys prefer a feed made by a mill in Idaho that uses a method for producing its pellets which preserves the nutritional value. Diane believes in the product so strongly that she sells it at a cut rate. "It's non-GMO," she said, noting that there is no organic feed on the market.
Diane also provides a birthing service for alpaca owners.
Although the alpacas at Falkor Ranch are charming, the Nubian goats are just as engaging. "They're like dogs," Diane said of the goats' temperament.
In the sunlight, their pupils contract to a horizontal slit. She keeps their horns trimmed to nubs to avoid anyone --; human or beast --; from getting jabbed. The biggest maintenance factor for goats is keeping the hooves trimmed.
Nubian goat milk has a high butterfat content and is sweeter than cow milk. Oftentimes dairy-intolerant people are able to digest goat milk without a problem because of the different proteins it contains compared to cow milk, Diane said.
People interested in goat milk can purchase herd share for $50, plus $40 a month for board. This entitles the owner to the milk produced for their share, which amounts to approximately one gallon per week.
To inquire about and alpaca fleece, goat milk, organic eggs, buying an alpaca or goat, or visiting Falkor Ranch contact Diane or Tom Cribley at 303-646-4907 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit their website at http://www.falkorranch.com.]]>
He had a booming voice, a strong presence and exuded joy.
He was an entertainer, intentionally or not.
That's what the loved ones of Colorado State Patrol Trooper Cody Donahue said when they gathered for his memorial service Dec. 2. The 34-year-old husband and father of two was struck and killed by a passing vehicle while investigating a property damage accident on Interstate 25 south of Castle Rock on Nov. 25.
Donahue's funeral at the Denver First Church of the Nazarene drew a crowd of hundreds, with an overwhelming show of support from area emergency responders. Uniforms from the state patrol, Castle Rock police and many other departments blanketed the sanctuary.
"Cody, we love you, we're going to miss you," said Capt. Jeff Goodwin, who works at the state patrol's Castle Rock station, where Donahue was based.
At the front of the room rested Donahue's casket, draped in an American flag and attended by two guards at all times - their heads bowed, their arms crossed and standing motionless next to their fallen comrade.
Before the service, men and women in uniform stood in stoic salute both inside and outside of the church, near the intersection of Hampden Avenue and Colorado Boulevard.
Donahue's sister, Erin Donahue-Paynter, opened the service. It was an honor to be his sister, she said, and she knew he wouldn't like such sadness.
"I want Velma and Leila and Maya to feel all the love in this place today," she said of Donahue's wife and two daughters.
At her request, the crowd stood to its feet with applause, whistles and cheers for a minute straight.
"You gave him the family he always wanted. You were his purpose in life," she said to Donahue's wife, Velma. "He loved every part of being a dad."
Colorado State Patrol Chief Scott Hernandez described Donahue, who lived in Parker, as a tenacious team member whose service saved lives.
"I am so proud to have known Cody, and I am so proud to have worn this uniform with Cody," he said.
Goodwin said Donahue was a fixture in the Castle Rock office. His voice could be heard throughout the building. He spent time talking to his colleagues on any topic. His stories were special simply because of the way he told them.
"He was our entertainer," Goodwin said.
And, they knew he loved his family immensely. When Donahue talked about weekend plans he didn't speak using "I," Goodwin said. He used "we," whether that meant taking the family to the mountains, to the movies or tool shopping, he joked.
Goodwin noted the tough past 18 months experienced by CSP.
Authorities say Donahue was struck by truck driver Noe Gamez-Ruiz, 41, of Denver, at about 1:50 p.m. the day after Thanksgiving. Gamez-Ruiz faces charges of careless driving resulting in death, a misdemeanor, and failure to yield right of way to an emergency vehicle, a traffic infraction.
Donahue was the third state patrol trooper killed in the past year and a half. Trooper Jamie Jursevics was struck and killed by a drunken driver on I-25 Nov. 15, 2015, and Trooper Taylor Thyfault was struck and killed on Colorado 66 by a fleeing suspect's vehicle May 23, 2015.
Longtime friend of Donahue's, state patrol Trooper Jeff Gowin, recalled some of his favorite memories with Donahue before breaking down into tears.
Recently, Gowin was hit by a Taser in their ongoing "torture agreement" in which the two agreed to play practical jokes on each other.
"Because (Donahue) leaned over and said, 'I'm not going to do this alone am I?' "
It got the crowd laughing.
In another instance, Donahue the entertainer had a video of him slipping, sliding down a hill and catching himself on a guardrail while on a call, and he showed it to anyone who would watch.
Donahue was the first to criticize and laugh at himself, Gowin said.
"He did have his faults," Gowin said. "He was clumsy. He was stubborn."
Again, to the crowd's laughter, Gowin went on to describe his friend's loyalty and giving spirit. Mostly in the past week, he heard Donahue described as genuine.
"He really liked to share his light," Gowin said in an emotional end to his speech. "I'm going to miss you brother."
Every resident who has something to share is being asked to attend an open house on Dec. 10 from 12:30 to 3 p.m. at Elizabeth Town Hall, 151 S. Banner St.
The committee is looking for photos and mementos of historic places in the area that can be scanned and documented by the project team. The public is also being asked, if possible, to share stories and background information with a videographer at an on-site recording station.
Attendees may also complete questionnaires to document ideas, memories and histories.
The purpose of the Historic Context Study is to record the community's history and identify buildings and places important to the community's identity. Development Director Grace Erickson spoke of the importance of having "the public provide us with some leads on which places they believe should be surveyed."
The committee consists of three contractors from Square Moon Consultants, Erickson, and Town Administrator Dick Eason. "We also have the Historic Advisory Board behind us as well," Erickson said.
She encouraged as many folks as possible to make the effort to help "preserve our town's history and character --; the first step is to study and identify it."
"This is the public input piece of the project, which plays a large part, which is why we're hoping to get a large turnout," she added.
A $21,000 grant was received for to do the study. "It will include a compilation of historical information, chronological history of the town, and a guide to architectural style ... it will also include recommendations for future history and preservation projects," Erickson said.
Completion of the study is expected in June 2017, at which time the results will be presented to in a public document. There will also be a video encapsulating the town's history and character.
For more information, contact the Elizabeth Community Development Department at 303-646-4166.]]>
What is your favorite movie?
My favorite movie is "The Lord of The Rings" trilogy because I enjoy an action/ thriller that keeps me on the edge of my seat every time.
What is your favorite pre-competition meal?
Over-easy eggs on toast because I just like eggs.
Why do you participate in sports?
I participate in sports for the challenge to win and beat the other opponent and also because I love competition.
What is your favorite type of music and who is your favorite artist?
My favorite favorite types of music are rap and classic rock. My favorite band is Led Zeppelin.
What is your favorite subject in school?
My favorite subject in school is biology because I love learning more about the world we live in.
Do you have any pre-competition superstitions or rituals?
I do. My pre-game ritual is when I get into the car, I put on my music and look out the window until I get to the rink, then we go out for team warmups once we are all at the rink.
"They were a makeshift bar/-restaurant basically," said Angus Hicks, co-owner and head chef of Jozi's Kitchen and Shebeen, "kind of like a speakeasy."
Secrecy was key to survival for traditional shebeens, but Hicks is hoping word about his new venture gets out.
In early September, Hicks, his brother John and Denver restaurateurs Omar and Nadia Malik opened Jozi's in the plaza at 10971 S. Parker Road. The restaurant's d cor celebrates South African culture just as the menu features what Hicks describes as his homeland's version of "comfort food."
New patrons can't help but notice the South African-themed ambience, featuring pictures of Nelson Mandela and the music of Ladysmith Black Mambazo.
It doesn't take long before they notice the exotic lingo on the menu, either.
Items with names like chakalaka, bunny chow and monkey gland sauce --; a gingery barbecue glaze that, according to Hicks, contains no monkeys or glands --; stand out. Even the name "Jozi" is an homage to the South African nickname for the country's largest city, Johannesburg.
"First-timers are typically blown away," sous chef Gentry Smith said. "The names of the food give people pause, but then they try it and they realize it's more familiar than they thought."
The unique names and combination of exotic ingredients is a result of more than 400 years of foreign rule, Hicks said. Different empires came and went throughout Africa's history, each bringing their favorite foods with them.
The English brought curry, the Dutch brought sausage and the French simmered stews in cast-iron braiis, the large pots seen used in the restaurant's logo. Malaysian, Portuguese and Indian influences helped shape the blend of sweet and savory flavors that characterize Jozi's hearty fare.
Response from the Parker community has been positive, Hicks said, but word-of-mouth has expanded the restaurant's customer base beyond the Denver-metro area.
"A lot of saffers come in from all over Colorado," Hicks said, explaining that "saffer" is slang for a South African citizen. "Some of them even cry."
Lisa and Farzad Farshad of Aurora are Yelpers, not saffers, but they were glad they gave Jozi's a try and said they'd be back to try out more of the restaurant's unique dishes.
"I don't think we really had any expectations," Farzad said. "We like to try different things."
Sarah Hinckley, a longtime friend of Hicks' who works at Jozi's, said the Farshads aren't the only satisfied customers she's served lately.
"I've never worked in a restaurant where I've picked up so many clean plates," she said.]]>
An interesting piece on creating a musical is included in the program: "Creating a new work for musical theater is one of the most thrilling journeys in the arts," Nehls said in a program story about the show. Both writers grew up watching the '60s variety shows with their families--;and both were aware of turmoil in the '60s as well, including strong responses to the war in Vietnam, where Simon has been.
The play was first discussed in December 2012 after the two finished a show for McLaughlin's theater in Houston. Nehls called with an idea and McLaughlin worked on it on the plane. Rod Lansberry, Arvada's artistic director and producer, "reached out to Nehls after the past Christmas and the pair had a complete first draft by March.
"The biggest change came late in the process with a different approach to Simon's journey through the play ... dialogue shifted in places ... the ending is the hardest part to get right and we're still working through it."
In June, a workshop was held with actors and a live audience. Lansberry said "getting live feedback led us to many insights and ideas that only helped us to solidify and improve the piece." McLaughlin added: "We got to hear where the audience got lost and we got to hear what moved them ... it's a musical comedy with a very powerful story about a soldier and his return from Vietnam. Balancing the power of the story and making sure we honor all the voices of that story while we surround it with some joyful singing and dancing --; it is a great and thrilling challenge indeed."
It's Dec. 14, 1969, on the set at Television City, Hollywood, California. The set is a living room where the Bright Family is to perform its annual Christmas variety show, a widely watched national performance.
Dana (Noah Racey), Louise (Megan Van De Hay) and daughter Maggie (Kim McClay) disagree about the act Maggie is to be in. Maggie has choreographed a new, more up-to-date act and mom doesn't like it.
In the middle of rehearsal, son Simon (Jake Mendes) arrives home. He is a former teen idol, now a decorated war hero, troubled by his return to civilian life and haunted by war experiences. He doesn't want to wear his uniform, absolutely doesn't want any mention of his medal and can't get enthused about performing. But he eventually does a solo number well.
There are side stories going on --; perhaps too many. A pair of wimpy writers keep showing up and being rejected. The Brights' friend Carol Marie (Sharon Kay White) is depressed about not having a man at Christmas when cowboy singer Len Ramble (Andrew John Diessner) appears with a ballad, "Christmas on Highway 13." Maggie has befriended a young black ensemble member, who is an orphan, who remembers watching the Bright Family show with the nuns. The engaging show runner, Ruby (Sheryl McCallum) also has a story ...
And then, President Nixon was in the audience until his agents thought the tap dancers sounded like gunshots and evacuated him, we are told ...
This is basically an appealing show with some bright new music ... the cast is talented, the choreography is sound. Perhaps a bit more sorting and smoothing is in order, but audiences will lean back and soak up the holiday cheer as it's presented here and now. For it to go national, which we'd love to see, it probably needs some more work.
If you go
"I'll Be Home for Christmas" runs through Dec. 23 at the Arvada Center, 6901 Wadsworth Blvd., Arvada. Tickets, $53-$77, 720-898-7200, arvadacenter.org.]]>
By the time she finished, it looked as though an orange porcupine had attached to each side of Jacobs' head. The approximate 1-inch needles with orange tips protruded like quills from his ears in every direction.
Although Jacobs at first didn't like the thought of all those needles, he now receives regular acupuncture treatments from Albring at the Castle Rock center.
Despite the appearance, the needles don't hurt, he said, and the relaxation effects of the auricular acupuncture he receives help control the symptoms of his autoimmune disease.
Jacobs undergoes the therapy to curb nerve pain. But he's recruiting area veterans to try Albring's acupunture for many reasons --; particularly in the hopes of treating Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.
The nonprofit has begun to offer free, twice-monthly clinics for veterans to try the alternative treatment method. It's aimed at veterans suffering from PTSD, but the therapy can treat them and their caretakers for a number of conditions, Albring said. Those include anxiety, depression or illnesses like Jacobs'.
The next clinic will be from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Dec. 22 at Albring's office, 405 S. Wilcox St., Suite 301. She prefers people pre-register online at www.4dwf.org so they can track anticipated attendance levels.
Jacobs, a Parker resident, was assigned to a base in southern Australia from 1981 to 1986. He was diagnosed with idiopathic sensory-motor polyneuropathy in 2012.
"Idio means unknown cause," Albring said.
"Big long words to basically say they don't know," Jacobs said.
The illness affects sensory and motor nerves of the peripheral nervous system, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine, but no cause is known. Symptoms include pain in the hands and feet, weakening of the muscles and trouble with balance or walking.
Jacobs sought alternative treatment methods, he said, when his doctors with the Department of Veterans Affairs told him they'd done what they could for his progressing disease.
"The two things that seem to be a staple in giving me some effort of relief is the acupuncture and the neuro-massages," he said.
Jacobs has tried a slew of experimental medications and alternative treatments. The medications are hit and miss. The neuromuscular massages help, as does acupuncture in providing temporary relief, he said.
To show his gratitude, Jacobs has helped Albring and her husband, John Anderson, who serves on the nonprofit's board of directors, with technical support for Four Directions Wellness Foundation website. Jacobs has also put the word out with local American Legion chapters, the VA and various veterans groups.
Four Directions Wellness Foundation received its nonprofit classification in June and models its services after Acupuncturists Without Borders, Albring said. The organization brings acupuncture to areas hit by natural disasters, human conflict, poverty or social injustice.
Albring began practicing in Castle Rock during the 1990s. She took her work to Georgia for 12 years and then returned approximately three years ago. She is certified by the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine, and licensed in Colorado and Georgia.
Many treatments considered alternative in the Unites States are conventional in other countries. Acupuncture, for example, is used in traditional Chinese medicine but not standard practice in the U.S.
When Jacobs first came to Four Direction Wellness Foundation, he had a list of more than 20 primary and supplemental medications, including morphine. Through the help of acupuncture, Jacobs said, he's whittled that down to about nine medications he hopes to evenually discontinue.
Albring strongly believes in the benefits of acupuncture. It helps on a holistic level, she said, by balancing the body and bringing relief on a mental and emotional level.
Jacobs has been her inspiration to begin helping veterans, she said --; they have nothing to lose by trying acupuncture.
"It can't do harm," Albring said. "It can only balance the body or do nothing."]]>