Author Archives: TOW-admin

Poetry Reading and Book Sale

Ward’s Poet Laureate, Michael Parker, has released a new book, “Kimono Mountain” and in company with Mary Johnston-Parker and Zalen Edwards will be reading poetry at the Ward Public Library at 7:30PM on Saturday, 2/10/2018.

Any time Mike reads, it’s an event not to be missed.


Ward Library accepting applications for Artist in Residence cabin 2017-2018

Recognizing that the arts are vital to the culture and heritage of the town of Ward, the Ward Public Library is undertaking a leadership role in creating an environment in which the arts can grow. In fulfilling this role the Ward Public Library is committed to these fundamental principles:

  • Recognizing the integrity of artistic expression of all cultures
  • Encouraging artistic excellence
  • Working to increase public awareness and involvement in the arts

The Ward Public Library Artist in Residence program was founded in 1976 to stimulate art development in the town of Ward, and to assist and encourage artists and art and help make art more accessible to the Ward community.
The Artist in Residence program provides a residence studio space available for two years to a dedicated artist to explore their creativity and teach and/or present their art to the community. The artist provides unique experiences to the community by sharing themselves and their art.
The community sees through the artist’s eyes, watches the creative process and learns to integrate this process in their own creativity.

Download the residency application here

Help Dr. Camarata get his Medicaid license back

If you and/or your family use Dr. Camarata’s family practice in Nederland, and especially if you’re a Medicaid patient, you need to know that his practice has been denied renewal of his Medicaid license, meaning that Medicaid patients will be forced to go to Boulder and try to find a practice that accepts Medicaid. We need to help to reverse this decision.

Although Dr. Camarata’s intention is to continue to operate his practice, this decision threatens his ability to do so. His practice, the only family practice from Estes to Black Hawk, is critical to the Peak to Peak community, Medicaid or not.

At the bottom is a link to a letter to the Texas corporation that bought the Medicaid contracts for the State of Colorado, that Dr. Camarata’s office can include with their appeal to restore his ability to serve Medicaid clients.

If you are affected by this, or are just disturbed by a Texas corporation messing with our community’s healthcare, please download this letter, add words of your own (polite please), print and sign it. I don’t care if you sign with your real name, just don’t make it so fake that it’s dismissed out of hand.

When you’re done, please fold it envelope style and put it in the Town of Ward box in front of town hall (NOT the post office). I’ll pick them up on Thursday and get them to Nederland by the deadline (3/16/17 at 5PM). Or if you go to Ned, just take it to his office, BEFORE Thursday 3/16/17 5PM.

Also you can email Governor Hickenlooper on his website or call him at 303.866.2471; email our state representative KC Becker or call her at 303.866.2578; and email our state senator Stephen Fenburg or call him at 303.866.4872.

As mayor, I’m also contacting all these people, but that’s not enough, you have to do it too. All this info will also be in FB, the QT and in the Post Office.

Lastly, there’s a Town Hall meeting at the Gilpin County Rec Center Sunday, March 26th from 4 to 6 pm. Local and state government folks will be there, along with Dr. Camarata. We’ll have a presence there. Let me know if you want to go.

Letter in support of Dr. Camarata


Let me know if it doesn’t work.

Sustainability Implementation Plan in Ward

In 2015 the Town of Ward received a grant from Boulder County for building a greenhouse and developing a sustainability plan. We’ve built the greenhouse, and now have completed a first draft of our sustainability plan.

We started the sustainability planning process by holding community meetings and asking ourselves what we value and want to ensure is sustainable and remains so. We turned that information into a document, with several people each completing different sections.

Now we’d like the broader community to have an opportunity to comment on the plan. Anyone can comment – comments from community members are more likely to be considered.

Use this link to visit the Ward Sustainability Implementation Plan first draft. You can suggest edits or select a word, phrase or paragraph, and click the comment button at the top or the little floating comment icon to write a comment about a section.

Thanks in advance for all the great ideas and thanks to all the people who have contributed their time and energy to this project: Emy, Amie, Howard, Ed, Cynthia, Crystal, Karelle, Zeke, and everyone else who came to meetings and brainstormed and built our community’s capacity.

Hummer/Cold Springs Fire

Yesterday afternoon a fire started on Cold Springs Drive near Nederland, Colorado. The conditions are ripe for it – record temps, extremely low humidity and lots of fuel. As of the last I’ve heard, the acreage burned was about 226 acres. We know structures have burned – the report is at least 4 – but we don’t have confirmations of an exact number.

A number of Nederland area subdivisions have been evacuated – Cold Springs, Bonanza Mountain, St. Anton’s Highlands, Silver Springs – and the western area of Sugarloaf Rd is on pre-evacuation alert. A pre-evacuation means the affected households should be prepared to leave at any time. If you feel unsafe, leave immediately – do NOT wait for an evacuation notice.

Here is the most up-to-date, accurate info: Boulder OEM emergency info

Here are road closures:

  • Hurricane Hill – between Hwy 119 and Ridge Rd.
  • St. Anton Summer Access Road – between Hwy 119 and Ridge Rd
  • Sugarloaf Rd – between Switzerland Trail and Peak to Peak Hwy
  • Peak to Peak Hwy between Sugarloaf and Ridge Road
  • Silver Point to Peak to Peak Highway
  • Cold Springs Road – between Hwy 119 and Ridge Rd.
  • Ridge Road
  • Conifer Road
  • Thunder Ridge South Road
  • Cougar Road
  • Shady Hollow Road
  • Switzerland Park Upham Gulch
  • Wolfetongue

Single-file only law for riding bicycles in Ward

Following is the text of the proposed Bicycle single file ordinance:

Series 2015


WHEREAS, the Town of Ward is authorized by state law, including without limitation C.R.S. § 42-4-111(1)(h) to adopt and enforce regulations for the operation of bicycles as necessary; and

WHEREAS, the Town has determined groupings of bicycles on our roads creates a hazard for vehicles, bicycles, pets and pedestrians; and

WHEREAS, the pending improvements to both Lefthand Canyon and Brainard Lake Road will inevitably increase traffic, both vehicular and bicycle, through the Town; and

WHEREAS, in order to promote the health and safety of Town residents, the Town of Ward has determined to adopt a single-file only law for riding bicycles, motorcycles, mopeds, electric assisted bicycles within the Town boundaries;

Section 1. The Town of Ward hereby establishes a “single file only” ordinance for bicycles within Ward’s jurisdiction. The ordinance shall state:

No person shall drive a motorcycle, moped, electric assisted bicycle or bicycle adjacent to any other such vehicle within the same lane on the roadway, and shall not ride two or more abreast except on paths set aside for the exclusive use of bicycles. Persons riding bicycles or electrical assisted bicycles also shall not impede the normal and reasonable movement of traffic.

Section 2. The town of Ward will install and maintain official signage or other traffic control devices placed upon or at the entrances to the roadways within the Town limits to give notice of this local ordinance and increase awareness.

Section 3. Variances to this ordinance may be granted by permission of the Town Council of the Town of Ward, for purposes of allowing permitted bicycle races to use our thoroughfares, and other purposes as the Town Council deems appropriate

Section 4. Failure to comply with this ordinance shall be subject to a fine.

Please note – state and county law allows 2 riders abreast (though this is even abused by some groups of bicyclists who ride 4 and 5 abreast, as a pack), this ordinance would limit cyclists to single file in the town limits.

Also enforcement would be by Ward marshals. That said – Boulder County has always had the right and the statutory power to enforce ANY traffic code in Ward – this is not something over which we have any control. They’ve always had this right and this ordinance sees no change in that situation.

What this ordinance WOULD do is give us the right to signage that would mitigate at least some of the problem with no enforcement at all – most bicyclists are willing to follow the law if they know it and this law would work in our favor.

In answer to some of the concerns raised:

  • Left Hand Canyon, as far as I can tell, is NOT a bicycle single-file road, marked by single file signs, but even if it is single-file only, that only pertains to the county road, outside of town limits. To make Utica Street a single-file zone, we have to change its designation in town.
  • Enforcement of a single-file ordinance for bicycles would be no different from current enforcement of any other traffic violations in Ward – whatever enforcement we have will be by the local marshals. That said, Boulder County Sheriffs (and State Patrol) have the statutory right to give out tickets in Ward, as they do in any municipality. So don’t run the stop sign with ANY cop car behind you.
  • Most of the fine from ANY ticketed traffic violation goes to the county, since we have chosen not to have a municipal court in Ward. But the point of this ordinance and the signage is not revenue, but safety.
  • And that’s the intent of the signage – to legally inform bicyclists that they must ride single file through town, reducing the chance of dangerous bicycle/car/pedestrian/pet encounters. The presence of the signs alone will likely go a long way to encouraging better bicyclist behavior, even without strict enforcement.
  • Indeed, bicyclists do make up a large portion of the town’s general fund revenue. They also make up a significant portion of the IPFPD’s emergency services calls. Those two things don’t come from the same pot, but packs of bicyclists (especially speeding bicyclists) increase the risk of accident. It’s unlikely that many bicyclists will stop coming to Ward because they have to ride single file and even if a few were willing to give up their addiction to Fred’s in protest, I still don’t see how allowing bicycle packs to endanger us, our children, our animals and our other visitors is a good trade for tax revenue from the few bicyclists who would stop coming and spending their money.

So read the actual ordinance (on the board in the case outside) and make up your minds; it will be voted on at the April election.


Agenda – Town Meeting – February 1, 2016

Town Meeting
February 1,2016


  1.  How the upcoming road closures might affect local business’, and what we can do to help alleviate potential impact on them.
  2.  Sustainability
  3.  Possibility of hosting a celebration for the recent successful acquisition of our water rights.   

Minutes – Town Meeting – January 2016

Record of Proceedings
Town Meeting
January 4. 2016

In Attendance– Mayor/ Karelle Scharff, Clerk/ Kristen Cornwall, Bookkeeper/ Carol Elmore, Council/ Christina & Sequoia Zahn, General Assembly/ Cynthia Bakke, Paul Kolovos, & Clarissa Arana.

At this time Kristen read the minutes from the December meeting.  Christina pointed out that Kristen did not name the task force members appointed by the Mayor to oversee removal of junk and abandoned vehicles pursuant to Ordinance 142.  These task force members are Chris Pelletier, Amy Hardy, & Bobbi Ann Goodnow.  With those omissions addressed, Christina motioned to accept minutes, Cynthia Bakke seconds.  All were in favor.

Department Reports

Mayor– Karelle reported that she is adding more and more content to our Town of Ward website, and Kristen will be beginning to post minutes etc. there as well.  Please check it out at

Karelle also asked Kristen to extend an invitation to our County Commissioners to join us for dinner & drinks in June.

Bookkeeper– Carol handed out the finalized budget, as well as a super informative hand-out with definitions pertaining to the budget.  Carol reported that we have $25,880.23 in checking and $103,675.01 in savings.

Emy on Sustainability–  Emy asked Bill Gilbert to put together a list of municipalities that allow “community septics.”  “Community septics” allow more than one home to share their fields/septics.

As there was no agenda for this meeting, it was a meeting of reminders on upcoming events…


  • Saturday, January 9 from 10-1 at the Nederland Community Center is the  “How to Prepare for Everything Workshop.”  Please RSVP to
  • Wednesday, January 13 from 6-8 p.m. also at the Nederland Community Center is a DOLA sponsored meeting being hosted by Cynthia Bakke.  This is not a public meeting, but a meeting for elected officials only.  Pizza will be provided.  Please RSVP to
  • Sunday, January 17 from 1-3 & Wednesday, January 20 from 6-8 at the church, Emy will be hosting “Planning for Sustainability”  meetings.
  • Cynthia Bakke encouraged us all to get together to view the show “High Profits” which shows Breckinridge and the highs/lows they have experienced with legal marijuana and dispensaries.  Perhaps a potluck and viewing marathon at the church?

Meeting adjourned @ 8:10 p.m.

Respectfully Submitted,

Kristen Cornwall

Lefthand Canyon construction update – Short delays at James Canyon on Tuesday 01/22/2016

Boulder County Transportation wants us to know that the contractor will need to use flaggers next Tuesday, Jan. 26 to move traffic at the new bridge construction site just west of the intersection with James Canyon. This will result in travel delays (up to five minutes) as only one lane will be open. They’ll do their best to move people through the zone quickly, but we wanted to make sure you were aware. Other than that, every other travel restriction will remain the same. On other days next week, there may be short (1 minute) delays at the intersection as equipment is moved through the work zone, but they’ll do their best to avoid this if possible. I apologize for any inconvenience. Throughout the work zone, construction remains on schedule and crews are optimistic that it will stay that way.

Road closures

By now, many folks in the Ward community have learned that starting in May 2016, we will be impacted by 6 months of road repairs on Left Hand Canyon from the Jamestown bridge at the confluence of James and Lefthand Creeks to Lickskillet, at the 10 mile marker.

There will be times when the road is shut down altogether – potentially for several days at a time – from the Jamestown bridge up to Lickskillet. This extent of closure will cut off access to Lee Hill and Old Stage, so we will have to find other ways to get to town. Other times there may be 1 – 3 hour delays. You can find current information at Please rely on that site for the most up-to-date info, as this site update its info from there.

Some of the time, the road is likely to be inaccessible from 8AM to 4PM, with delays from 7AM-8AM and from 4PM-5PM. At least, that’s how they’re currently handling the road repairs below the Jamestown bridge. says that may be different but we will know better as the time approaches.

I would suggest visiting that construction project in its off hours (after 5, before 7AM or on weekends) to see the extent of what they’re doing. This is NOT your daddy’s simple repaving!

Not only will this affect our travel to and from Boulder, it’s going to impact our local businesses that depend on that through-traffic for their revenue, their ability to continue to employ some of our town residents and it will have repercussions on our town budget that depends on sales tax revenue for 40% of our general fund income. And it will have an effect on postal deliveries, the trash roll-off, and propane deliveries and I’m sure there’s other ramifications we just haven’t thought of yet.

But WAIT, there’s more!

Starting in late September of 2016 (yes, it overlaps), there will be extensive repairs and repaving on the Brainard Lake Road, that is projected to last until May 2017. While this won’t affect our ability to get to Boulder, it will still impact our local businesses.

At the February town meeting (February 1, 7PM) we’ve invited some folks from Boulder County transportation as well as the business owners and other folks to come and talk about how we can ensure that we minimize this disruption. We’re starting to put together a plan to help our community better deal with this and if you would like to help, let’s put our heads together. Come to the February 1 town meeting.

Sustain Ward

We’ve now had our first two sustainability meetings – both of them rousing successes, with great attendance and an abundance of compelling ideas. We covered numerous topics such as: community gardening, food storage, food pantry, energy, community readiness, eldercare, community radio (both broadcast and amateur radio, aka ham radio), zero waste, septic and wastewater, town trails, jobs and economics and youth programs. We’ll be posting more specifics about the ideas as we compile the information.

Just because you haven’t participated in these first 2 meetings doesn’t exclude you from jumping in now. Our next meeting to prioritize these ideas and start to put together our short and long term plans will be on January 30, from 2-4. The more people participate in this, the better represented the whole community will be, and this is important.

We would encourage you to offer your comments, even if attending meetings is not possible. You can respond here or on the Ward QT. All ideas, expressed with politeness, are welcome.

Town of Ward – Community Sustainability Project

What – Let’s create a sustainability plan that reflects Ward community values and helps us navigate the future.

Key Steps in Sustainability Planning Process

  • Clarify town vision
  • Determine what we want to sustain
  • Build collaboration
  • Document our desired sustainability strategies and methods
  • Develop action steps and priorities
  • Document and communicate successes

Why –Creating a written sustainability plan will provide a road map not just for us, but also other governmental and regulatory agencies that regulate resources that impact the planet and our lives. Furthermore, the community engagement process in and of itself will be an excellent way to share ideas and build collaboration.

Who – Everyone in Town is encouraged to participate in all of the following ways;

Community Workshops

will be held for idea sharing and input collection on key topics and community initiatives. Workshop time will be used to brainstorm key topics and will include learning sessions presented by community members who have knowledge and skills to share.

Jan. 17 (Sunday) – Vision and Brainstorm

Jan. 20 (Wednesday) – Vision and Brainstorm

Feb– Review – Key Topics and Recommendations

March – Review – Draft Sustainability Plan

April – Review – Final Sustainability Plan

May– Greenhouse site prep and construction begins (weather dependant)


for the following key topics have been formed and are open to all.

Sustainable Septic and Wastewater

This subcommittee is working to address issues around permitting, cost and identifying appropriate strategies for our mountain community that are appropriate for rural dwellings. Of the 107 structures in town only 46 have approved septic permits.

Contacts : Pat Cypher ( or Adrienne De Forrest (

Ward Food Pantry

This subcommittee is working to address hunger issues in our community through food distribution. A new lock system has been installed at the Food Box next to Ward town hall to prevent vandalism and waste.

Contact : Amie Weinberg ( (303) 459-0144

Ward Zero Waste

This subcommittee is working to recycling and landfill diversion opportunities.

Contact : Emy Maloutas ( (303) 459-1013

Interviews with Indian Peaks Fire Dept members, elected town representatives, water board, library board and interested individuals are being scheduled.

If you are interested in PARTICIPATING, being interviewed, hosting a workshop breakout group in Jan on a topic related to sustainability or have general questions please contact: Emy Maloutas at or (303) 459-1013.

Surveys will be available in the post office entry. Surveys can be dropped off at the town hall drop box

How to Prepare for Everything Workshop – Free

PreparednessWorkshopFlyerThe Inter Mountain Alliance is sponsoring a “How to Prepare for Everything” workshop to take place on Saturday, January 9th from 10-1pm in the Ned Community Center. This workshop is not about disaster preparedness per say but instead about how to prepared for disruptions in our lives. This is a hands on workshop that will provide take home tools to support our unique families in preparedness for the disruptions that life brings and how to support our unique living situations. This workshop will be taught by Aaron Titus, the Co-chair of the BoCoVOAD.

I have attached a flyer for you to share with your community members. This workshop is open to the public and all are welcome.

Let me know if you have any questions. See you all soon!

Amy E. Hardy | Community Resilience Director

Foothills United Way
1285 Cimarron Drive

Lafayette, CO 80026
Phone: 303-895-3418

Poetry Reading

If you want to enjoy some fantastic food, wine, poetry and wit this might be the best place to be in the mountains on a Friday night.
Join us for the wit and wisdom of Pam Harrington and Margaux Murphy, reading together for the first time in 17 years.
Ward Public Library
Ward, CO
Friday 10/23

Ward Sustainable Septic and Wastewater Subcommittee

Ward Sustainable Septic and Wastewater Subcommittee

Meeting notes 9/18/2015 9am Town Hall

9 in attendance

Ward residents are having issues as they move through the Boulder County permitting for septic and grey water systems. Clarification is needed as to what defines a permit. Both State and County laws need to be complied with and whichever is stricter. In one case, the State was going to require a 75 gal per person per day system, when the home did not have running water.

There was a review of grey water, waste water and black water definitions. The State and County both have regulations and review during the permitting process. Let’s not get put in a box when it comes to waste water solutions for the Town of Ward. We can identify solutions that will work in our community where lot sizes can affect your options and cost (initial project and ongoing maintenance). Through the Town of Ward’s Sustainability Planning Project this subcommittee will coordinate to support the identification and articulation of performance based alternatives i.e., composting systems and other cost effective solutions.

Let’s work together as a community to ensure that the Boulder County’s Septic Smart Program includes sustainable and cost conscious solutions that fit for Ward. Individually the permitting process is expensive and we could be picked off one by one. Solutions should be community generated and performance based, not prescriptive. Water Dept needs its authority and support for sustainable solutions.

Let’s get our terminology straight which will help use communicate effectively. Waterless toilet technology = composting toilet.

2023 is the Septic Smart deadline.


Onsite Wastewater Treatment System Regulations is available online (


Next meeting Oct 9, 9am Town Hall

Fire Bans by both Boulder County and the USFS 9/25/15

Sheriff Pelle Orders Fire Ban for Western Boulder County mountains

Boulder County has enacted a fire ban for the mountains

Here is summary of the ban:

The fire ban prohibits:

  • Slash fires
  • The use of any kind of fireworks or model rockets
  • All other outdoor spark or flame producing activities
  • All outdoor burning not listed below as allowable

This fire ban allows for:

  • Indoor fires in fireplaces or stoves
  • Smoking indoors or within an enclosed vehicle
  • Campfires in improved and maintained campgrounds that are currently open to thepublic, as long as the fuel for such fires are smaller than two feet in diameter by three feet in height.
  • Liquid or gas fuel stove use
  • Charcoal grill use on private land
  • Smoking outdoors in areas free of flammable material
  • Fires contained within maintained fire pits or grates on private land

The fire ban will be in effect until the sheriff finds that the hazardous conditions have subsided.

Additionally Fire Restrictions begin today on portions of the Roosevelt National Forest in Boulder County

Boulder, Colo. (Sept. 24, 2015) – Fire restrictions go into effect this morning, Sept. 24, 2015, on portions of the Roosevelt National Forest in support of the fire ban by Boulder County.

The fire restrictions are in an area bounded on the west by State Highways 7, 72, and 119 (Peak to Peak Highway);on the north by the Boulder County line just north of Highway 36; on the south by Highway 72 (Coal Creek Canyon); and on the east by the Roosevelt National Forest boundary in Boulder County. These restrictions limit where and what type of fires you can have and are in place until rescinded. Within the fire restriction area, forest visitors cannot:

  • Build or maintain a fire or use charcoal, coal, or wood stoves, except within a developed recreation site (e.g., campgrounds where fees are charged). The use of petroleum-fueled stoves, lanterns or heating devices, providing such devices meet the fire underwriter’s specifications for safety, is allowed.
  • Use explosives, including fireworks.
  • Smoke, except in an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site, or while in an area at least three feet in diameter cleared of all flammable materials.
  • Weld or operate acetylene or other torch with an open flame.
  • Use any internal or external combustion engine (including chainsaws) without a spark arresting devise properly working.

To view both the closure and fire restriction orders as well as a map of the areas covered by both, go to They are listed in the “Alerts and Notices” box on the right. All visitors are reminded to be extra careful with fire this fall and winter, especially in windy and dry conditions and in places where tall grasses have cured.

K. “Reid” Armstrong
Public Affairs Specialist/Community Liaison

Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests

Pawnee National Grassland

p: 303-541-2532
c: 970-222-7607

Caring for the land and serving people