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Articles written by Avery Howe


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  • Fun-filled fair week starts Saturday

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|Jul 20, 2023

    Washakie County Fair was first held in Worland from September 1-3, 1938. Starting Saturday, July 22 with an 8 a.m. horse show, it will now celebrate its 85th year. “Realizing the importance of the educational value of fairs throughout the United States and increased interest in livestock, agriculture, women’s work club organizations etc., resulting largely in keen competition and annual demonstrations at fairs, the county of Washakie has appropriated the sum of $500 for the fair for the year of 1938, to be paid on livestock, agricultural pro...

  • Rain closes multitude of national forest, BLM roads

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|Jul 6, 2023

    High precipitation levels in the region have led to many road closures in National Forest and Bureau of Land Management public lands. “This year’s persistent, heavy precipitation has left us with damaged backcountry roads across the Big Horn Basin. We’re still assessing the damage and scheduling and prioritizing repairs. On top of that, it remains wet and muddy out there, which makes it difficult to maneuver the equipment needed for the roadwork without causing additional resource damage,” said Sarah Beckwith, Public Affairs official for Win...

  • Community garden on the grow

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|Jul 6, 2023

    Worland Community Garden is looking to grow, expanding both its physical footprint and its services through an $8,000 grant from the Wyoming Community Foundation. President of the Community Garden Board and Washakie County Conservation District Education Coordinator Janet Hofmann said the proposal for an expansion north into an unutilized portion of Newell Sargent Park was presented by the City of Worland "years ago." Now, that idea is becoming a reality. The latest grant money, facilitated...

  • Celebrations planned for Fourth of July

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|Jun 29, 2023

    The Ten Sleep Rodeo Association will kick off the Big Horn Basin’s celebrations with its 78th annual Fourth of July Rodeo starting at 5 p.m. Monday, July 3 at the Ten Sleep Rodeo Grounds. On the Fourth, the rodeo performance will begin at 1:30 p.m. Ten Sleep’s Fourth of July Parade will begin at 10 a.m., with this year’s theme as “Yankee Doodle Dandy.” The Ten Sleep-Hyattville Lions Club Pony Express will arrive in time to start the parade, with an estimated 26 riders dedicated to carrying pre-purchased commemorative envelopes 17 miles bet...

  • Small Museum Passport Program takes visitors on historical journey

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|Jun 22, 2023

    Museum lovers should be excited to learn that eight members of the Big Horn Basin Association of Museums (BBAM) will be offering the Small Museum Passport program this year. Washakie Museum and Cultural Center Executive Director Marian Bender said that the idea for the passport began two Februarys ago. The idea is, patrons pick up a passport booklet, travel the Basin, and collect stamps at the various local museums – if you get three stamps, you win a BBAM water bottle complete with “I ❤ Museums” printed on it. Its second year running, the Pas...

  • Neighbors oppose rezoning at 1019 Coburn Avenue

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|Jun 15, 2023

    The City of Worland Board of Adjustment and Planning Commission met on Monday, June 12, to discuss a zone change at 1019 Coburn Avenue from a central business to medium high density residential district. David Kissner, the owner of the property, requested the change be made to allow his family to live in the building without having to physically separate their living quarters from the “business” portion of the structure. “Right now, the request has more to do with flexibility,” he said. The Kissners intend to live in the home with two other m...

  • Commissioners mull salaries during budget work session

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|Jun 15, 2023

    Washakie County held their first budget work session for the 2023-24 fiscal year on June 6. County Clerk Lily Rakness Parra reported that the discussion centered around employee salaries. During their May 16 meeting, the commission heard from Sheriff Austin Brookwell and Worland Police Chief Gabe Elliott regarding increases to the dispatch budget. At the time, Brookwell stated that his goal for the 2023-24 budget would be to increase dispatch salaries to be equal to other divisions, with a 10% raise across the board. Parra said the Commissioner...

  • Rep. Hageman talks gender identity, border security to local GOP

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|Jun 8, 2023

    U.S. Representative Harriet Hageman paid a visit to Washakie County Republicans for her “quarterly report” during their Lincoln Day Dinner fundraiser on Saturday, June 3 at Green Hills Golf Course in Worland. Hageman informed attendees that she had been appointed to the two committees she most desired to be on – Judiciary and Natural Resources, alongside the Water, Wildlife and Fisheries and Limited Government and the Constitution subcommittees and was named chairman of the Indian Affairs subcommittee. Hageman also reported that she had been...

  • Conservation District requests city bring back compost pile

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|Jun 8, 2023

    Washakie County Conservation District Manager Amanda O’Keefe and Education Coordinator Janet Hofmann made an appearance at the June 6 Worland City Council meeting to advocate for the resurrection of the town composting system. O’Keefe pointed out that the last effort to create a workable compost lot at Newell Sargent Park was headed by the Conservation District, City and University of Wyoming Extension Office starting in 2015. In 2019, a new composting lot was opened, but since then, the composting setup has fallen into disrepair and dis...

  • Occupational therapist Doyle leaves district after 31 years of service

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|Jun 8, 2023

    Michelle Doyle observed an occupational therapist at work back when she was attending Worland High School and found a calling. Now, she has helped 31 years' worth of Worland students as an OT for Washakie County School District No. 1, bidding her last classes goodbye in her retirement this year. "I was always a Wyoming fan, even when I went to school in Colorado," Doyle said. She attended the University of Wyoming for her prerequisites and continued to cheer on the brown and gold from Colorado...

  • Cleaning up: Fronk reflects on 18 years as school custodian

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|Jun 8, 2023

    Stacie Fronk was born and raised in Worland. So were her two children and six grandchildren, all of which graduated from Worland High School, where Fronk worked for 18 years until her retirement last December. Fronk started out in the kitchen at Worland Middle School in 2001, moved to West Side Elementary School that fall, then went on to become high school custodian in 2005, 21 total years of service. "The graduating Class of 2023 was born the year I started at the high school," Fronk pointed...

  • Lyman, Moody bid Ten Sleep School adieu

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|Jun 8, 2023

    Ten Sleep School employees Betty Lyman and Larry Moody bid adieu to students and staff during a retirement celebration on May 19. Washakie County School District Number 2 Superintendent Annie Griffin read aloud several memories and farewells submitted by coworkers about Lyman, who served in the cafeteria and as a bus driver for a total 27 years, and Moody, who worked as janitor for 16 years. Reminiscing on the many meals Lyman has served, friends recalled delectable "Betty's Spaghetti," cinnamon...

  • Get to know first responders at Safe Community Day

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|Jun 1, 2023

    Worland will have its first Safe Community Day in a decades-long stretch this Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Newell Sargent Park. Washakie County Emergency Management/Homeland Security Director Kami Neighbors said the idea for the event was brought up by Worland Police Chief Gabe Elliott during a Local Emergency Planning Committee meeting. “Back in the day it had been a hit, maybe 20-plus years ago, and we just thought it would be fun to bring it back. People liked it in the past, so hopefully they will enjoy it today,” she said. Wor...

  • Montoya retiring after 28 years teaching, coaching

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|Jun 1, 2023

    Tammy Montoya hadn't really planned on becoming a teacher. "Didn't even cross my mind," she laughed. "God always has a plan for you. And you don't always know it. And that's where I ended up, you know and it was just, it was perfect." The Worland High School Spanish teacher is hanging up her hat after 28 years, 11 spent at her alma mater, WHS. So, how did she get into teaching? After two years of business school at Northwest College in Powell, Montoya and her family were back in Worland and...

  • Washakie County Memorial Day Ceremonies

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|May 25, 2023

    American Legion Post 44 will begin Memorial Day weekend on Saturday by placing flags on the graves of all veterans buried at Riverview Memorial Gardens Cemetery in Worland. Ceremonies will continue in Worland on Monday for Memorial Day, with speakers, wreaths to honor the fallen, and the playing of “Taps” starting at 11 a.m. at the Arch in Memory of the Valliant in Riverview Memorial Gardens. Post 44 First Vice Commander Justin Pfeiffer will give the speech, with Commander Mike Williams to emcee and Chaplain Frank Ley as Chaplain. Poem rea...

  • Choices That Matter Day updated for this year's eighth graders

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|May 18, 2023

    "The Choices That Matter Day was filled with thrilling experiences. It showed us what is good and bad in life, and to pursue your dreams in life," one Worland Middle School eighth grader wrote after spending their day discussing topics such as drunk driving, unplanned pregnancy and STIs, addiction, mental health and suicide with local entities. Worland Middle School hosted its Choices That Matter Day on May 3 with the help of Washakie County Prevention Coalition, Cloud Peak Counseling Center,...

  • Ten Sleep graduation this weekend

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|May 11, 2023

    Ten Sleep’s Class of 2023 will toss up their caps at 2 p.m., Sunday, May 14 in the Ten Sleep Gymnasium. The class of seven’s valedictorian is Kinley Anderson, who will be honored alongside salutatorian Walker Cooper. Classmates Calvin Baker, Kevin Fuchs, Jillian Miller, Elijah Mitchell and Ian Turgeon will also receive their diplomas. Ten Sleep Schools Principal Robert Griffin said, “This is my first year leading the Pioneers, and this class has been amazing to lead.” Griffin noted that Ten Sleep was able to have a football team this year for t...

  • Blueway Trail surveying set for summer

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|May 11, 2023

    This summer the Bureau of Land Management will be floating the Big Horn River, and they are inviting the public to join them. The project comes as agencies such as BLM, Wyoming Game and Fish and Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area, along with the Bighorn Basin Outdoor Recreation Collaborative, look to develop the Blueway Trail along the river from Thermopolis to Lovell. “I think the main point is just trying to get people out on the river and enjoying it, and for us, increasing access to public lands,” BLM Cody Field Office Outdoor Rec...

  • Cottonwood Creek Bridge sold to highest – and only – bidder

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|May 4, 2023

    Cottonwood Creek Bridge in Winchester was sold at the Washakie County Commissioner meeting on Tuesday, May 2 to Galloway Ranch LLC out of Ten Sleep for the amount of $1,150. Galloway offered the only bid on the historic bridge, which will continue to be utilized for its original purpose – only this time around, it will stretch over Nowood River rather than Cottonwood Creek. “It doesn’t offset the cost of the scale model,” Commissioner Morgan Martinez said, in reference to the estimated $5,000 rendering of the bridge for display at Washaki...

  • Wilde Health Center closing up shop after 40 years

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|May 4, 2023

    In 1983, Doctor of Chiropractic Brad Wilde's practice started with an ad in the Northern Wyoming Daily News: "Worland Chiropractic Clinic opening July 5!" "The first day was good, and it just grew from there. Word of mouth!" Wilde's self-proclaimed "office manager, wife and boss" Debi Wilde said. Since then, the couple has served thousands of patients from all over the country, including as far as Colorado, Utah and California. "Our approach to health was rather unique, so we drew people in...

  • County to fund model of Cottonwood Creek Bridge for museum

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|Apr 27, 2023

    Washakie County is accepting bids for Cottonwood Creek Bridge in Winchester. As $6,500 was previously allotted for the bridge’s transportation, the county will support up to that amount for the removal of the bridge from its current location to its new owner’s property. Bids will be accepted up until 5 p.m. on May 1. At the Washakie County Commissioners’ Tuesday, April 18 meeting, Chairman Aaron Anderson noted that a 3D printed model of the bridge was part of the agreement with Wyoming Department of Transportation and Washakie County Museu...

  • 'Fiddler on the Roof' opens Thursday

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|Apr 27, 2023

    "We were supposed to do 'Fiddler' in 2020 when COVID hit, so it has kind of been in the back of my mind since then," Spring Musical Director Naomi Durrant said. "It's a classic, and I think it's appropriate for our time." The original "Fiddler on the Roof" musical, about a Jewish family living in Imperial Russia, first appeared at Broadway's Imperial Theater in 1964. The show ran for 3,242 productions due to its popularity. Now on Thursday, April 27 and Friday, April 28, at 7 p.m., the musical...

  • Discarded cigarettes cause fire; family displaced

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|Apr 20, 2023

    At 9:40 p.m. on April 12, Worland Volunteer Fire Department responded to a call at 2019 Big Horn Avenue Apartment No. 2 to reports of a structural fire on both the interior and exterior of the building. "Crews extinguished it very rapidly," WVFD First Lieutenant Troy Nelsen detailed, noting that the firefighters worked until midnight to subdue the fire. Five firefighting apparatuses responded to the scene alongside Washakie County Ambulance Services. No personal injuries were reported, though th...

  • City Council meeting a municipality medley

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|Apr 20, 2023

    Jurn Wagner visited the Worland City Council during their Tuesday, April 18 meeting to discuss a noise complaint – made on himself. “I was told by a couple of people that there was a call-in of a blower being run that was pretty loud, and it might have been me,” Wagner laughed. The call to the Worland Police Department at 5:58 a.m., published in Northern Wyoming News, led Wagner to explore the city ordinances, where he found that current noise limits are 50-70 decibels. Wagner asked the council to re-examine their ordinances, as the current one...

  • Washakie County Fair awards increased

    AVERY HOWE, Staff Reporter|Apr 13, 2023

    Washakie County Fair Board approved their budget at their Monday, April 10 meeting with intentions to submit their $125,000 proposal to the County Commissioners. The proposal will be an increase from the previous $93,000 budget. Fair Board members voted to increase showmanship premiums from $6 to $15 for first place, with $12, $9, $6, $5 and $4 awarded for following placements. Open and Youth classes will also receive a $3 increase from last year, with $6 for first place. The change was suggested by Board Member Dani Rice after researching...

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