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January 5, 2012     Lovell Chronicle
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January 5, 2012
 

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CHRONICLE eo e January 5, 2012 I The Lovell Chronicle I 3 Senior center director a busy lady BY BOB RODRIGUEZ When it comes to her job as director of the North Big Horn Senior Center in Lovell, Denise Andersen lists her priority as people, not paperwork. Oh, she does lots of paperwork, but people come first. Perhaps that's why she is so highly re- garded and why in October this year she will mark 20 years inthe position. She be- gan work at the center in February 1992 as a secretary, but eight months later was hired as director. For Andersen, who came with a varied employment background in- cluding radio broadcasting and food ser- vice, her current post is a labor of love. She is quick to point out that all the jobs she held previously helped prepare her for what she does now. "I wear a lot of dif- ferent hats," she said in reference to her varied duties, adding that the job contin- ues "to be a learning experience." Because of her radio background in college and commercial stations in Boze- man, Mont., and Rock Springs and Jackson in Wyoming, she became adept at public speaking and thinking quickly to deal with most any situation. She recalls developing a "good news" segment that became quite popular. And her people skills also were ex- panded from her time working at the Wyo- ming Boys School in Worland. Andersen is highly complimentary of her staff, which consists of approximately 13 full- and part-time employees. She has no hesitation in stating that she knows that they can handle any matter that aris- es. Most of her full-time staffhas been with her for 15 to 20 years. "It's so important to have good people," she said, adding that, "The people here are excellent." Besides working with them and coordinating operations, she often links with the public health and WIC offices BoB RODRIGUEZ Denise Andersen greets all visitors to the North Big Horn Senior Center with a smile, which reflects her upbeat attitude toward her job and the seniors she serves. housed in the senior center, which is owned by Big Horn County. In dealing with her responsibilities, she feels blessed to possess a good sense of humor and the desire to never cast a dark cloud on anything. "Besides that," she ad- mits, "I am highly competitive, so I'm al- ways working to make what we do here better than ever. Plus, I determined from the get-go to never lay gloom on anyone. I've never wanted to be a bummer." Her outlook for the Lovell area also is bright, as she sees more retired persons, and others with gray hair, moving in. "And why wouldn't they?" she asks. "We have so much to offer, from a hospital and oth- er amenities and attractions, to just being a lovely place." As well, she feels that the senior center with its meals, activities and services also is a factor. She points out that during the past fis- cal year, which concluded at the end of Oc- tober, the center served 13,417 meals in its dining room and 13,519 meals were deliv- ered to homes. "It's astronomical and we're proud of that," she said with a smile. She figures that based on statistics the center is serving 89 percent of the population at least once a year, not including the New Horizons Care Center. "Mine is a multifaceted job," said An- dersen. "There's lots of politics involved, and I've had to hone my skills learning to write grants. It's a huge matter involving the abil- ity not only to write, but to show the need and budgeting and so much more. But I've learned that." She's also learned to be a jack-of-all-trades at the center, doing what- ever it takes. In fact, she feels that shovel- ing snow should become an Olympic event. She feels especially good about her and the staffs accomplishments of daily help- ing someone whether with transportation, a meal or other aspects. "It's such a positive feeling to go home at the end of a day know- ing that you have aided someone," she said. "And we truly benefit from having such a supportive community. Sometimes aid comes anonymously; it's such a great com- munity. The staff and I do our work will- ingly because we feel such a close connec- tion to the people." The director also is extremely grate- ful for the continued community support to keep the senior service district funding alive with "yes" votes when the item is put before voters. "It's a godsend," she said, "that allows us to keep our services going, and we see a good future." Andersen and her husband of 11 years, Clarence, who is a custom hay farmer, live in Lovell. When not at the center, the Cody native enjoys helping her husband, plus gardening and visiting nearby family mem- bers. As for her nearly 20 years at the se- nior center as director, she states, "I still have a lot to learn." Senior Chatter Come try dominoes BY PHYLLIS BRONKEMA A happy and prosper- ous new year is wished to all from the North Big Horn Senior Center. The Newcomer's Club met at the senior center on Thursday, Dec. 29. The card game winners that day were John Nickle in bridge and Garnet So- rensen in pinochle. The center is offering a dominoes group begin- ning Jan. 5 at 2 p.m. The game will be held every other Thursday on weeks opposite of the weeks the Newcomer's group is held. The hostess for the first meeting will be Ver- na Hawkins, who hatched this novel idea. Come learn different games, such as Mexican train, chicken foot and oth- ers. The group is still in the planning stages, so de- tails are being worked out. For more information, call Verna Hawkins at 217- 3602. Discount spay and neuter clinics offered The City of Powell, along with participating veterinarians, is sponsor- ing a 20 percent discount spay, neuter & vaccination clinic, all in 2012. Feb. 1-29: Big Horn Animal Care Center, 754- 4192 Feb. 6-10: Chadwick Veterinary Hospital, 527- 7213 February : Lovell Vet- erinary Service, 548-2452; Greybull Animal Clinic (spay and neuter only), 765-9294 Feb. 13-17: Saam Vet- erinary Clinic, 568-9305 Feb. 21 and 23: Tharp Veterinary Clinic, 347- 2358 (discount on spay and neuters only-two days only) Appointments must be made in advance and the number of surgeries may be limited. Full payment is required the day of ser- vice. Byron News Skating, skiing and the bobsled run E, DENNEY NEVILLE 548- 7829 nevilleart@tctwest.net In Byron, ice skating was an available winter en- tertainment when we were young and bored. We skat- ed on the frozen edge of the Shoshone River, the sag- ging ice sheets of the Sidon Canal and the swamps or beaver ponds below the Johnson farm. The beaver ponds were the premium choice, but required a three-mile trek through the tangle of trees below the south bluff and the river. The return march on twisted ankles, tired legs, and done in the fog of mild brain concussions, was awesome to see. On our dull and of- ten unmatched skates we streaked over the ice and leaped the dams.with the grace of a one-legged pi- rate on a rubber crutch. Our landings were usu- ally a graceless choreogra- phy of flailing appendages punctuated with occasional dull thuds when we lit on our noggins instead of our skates. We often left DNA samples of hide and hair freezing to the ice. So it was with the Pseudo-Olympic Ice Team of Byron. Another of the great winter sports in Byron was barrel stay skiing. An un- skilled person, hereafter referred to as skier, would slip each foot into a single strap nailed to a slight- ly curved barrel stay. He would hold on to the end of a long rope tied to the horn of a saddle wherein sat a friend soon to be blamed for the reckless endangerment of the skier. The choice of a power supply for forward movement was a horse, generally a spooky-eyed one easily made skittish by human screams mixed with irresponsible human lan- guage. I saw one such inci- dent as a young, impres- sionable pre-teener when a skier, being yanked along by a large, black, wild-eyed horse, turned a corner at high speed, causing the skier to follow in a wide arc too excessive for a city block. He landed directly amid a big ditch filled with weedy trash, ice and crusty snow. For but a brief moment the skier's athletic prowess distinguished and enabled him to execute a series of what appeared to be non- professional but entertain- mg maneuvers. He then traveled in a horizontal di- rection that degraded rap- idly into an abrupt, feet- first plowing of ice, ditch trash and snow. The skier then abruptly vaulted in a cartwheel-like manner be- fore settling into the ditch- -motionless- resembling a large lump of unclaimed laundry. Neither horse nor rid- er seemed to understand the skier's narration of the event as it occurred, nor did I. The language was above my minimal vocabulary at the time. I left the scene quickly and do not recall a funeral that winter, so I am led to believe that the skier survived. There are many rea- sons for which something is said to be either infamous or famous. Our bobsled run was an event neither infa- mous nor famous. We located a suitably challenging hill at the edge of a garbage dump covered with a deep crust of frozen snow strewn with discard- ed obstructions of garbage, gravel and sagebrush. It looked ideal for a fast bob- sled run because of its steep incline. Now all we needed was a bobsled. It took a few hours of scrounging parts and some radical engineering to pro- duce our Olympic-looking bobsled. One major prob- lem when the construction was complete was that the sled was heavy and about a quarter mile from the se- lected site of our garbage- dump run. It took the better part of an hour to get our sled into position. With great anticipation, we set our sled ready on the precipi- tous edge. The decision was made that I was stu- pid enough to try it first. With dubious courage, I crawled into the cockpit of our Olympian prototype and readied myself for the heroic ride, imagining that I would expertly dodge the lumps of sagebrush and sail gracefully over rocks and lumps of garbage with as professional skill I had seen in the movie news- reels. My friend laughed with an evil grin, reassuring me that something would go wrong, and it did. He shoved me over the edge, and I wish I could tell you that I had an exciting ride down the slope mak- ing graceful curves around sagebrush, garbage ob- structions and boulders, descending at more than 70 mph, being airborne a few times and that the Olympic Committee wanted to adopt our design. But it did not work out that way. Our overweight klunk- er rocked over the crest of the slope and nosed into the crusty snow, stalling there at a severe angle at the top of the run, descending but about three discouraging feet, and it would not budge another inch because it was so embedded in the crusty snow. There it stayed, mo- tionless, like Noah's Ark framed in ice on Mount Ar- arat. The spring thaw soon would return it to the dump from which came its parts. Thus was the end of the Olympic Bobsled Team rep- resenting Byron. We learned much sur- viving our failures. Cowley News Talented Snell family touched many DRUE TBBS-MEEK 548-6901 I recently received an e-mail from Ned Snell, who grew up in Cowley with his parents, Jay and Freda Snell, and lived in a huge white house located where Linda and the late LeRoy Parker raised their family. The Snell fam- ily was large, content and amazingly active. Mrs. Snell was an educator and her husband worked construction as I recall. Their children were J.C. Snell, Lee, Linda, twins Bill and Beth and the youngest, Ned. We grew up with them and Ned worked at the Tebbs fam- ily farm in the summers hauling hay with me as the driv- er. He was tall and skinny and I cannot believe the way he could throw bales. Sometimes it was so hot during the hay-hauling that Ned and I jumped into the canal about every hour with our clothes and shoes on just to cool down. We had to do this out of sight of my Granddad Tebbs, who didn't like slackers, but oh, that cool water was fine. Ned is quite a few years younger than me, but even with the exhausting difficult work, we formed a friendship and enjoyed those days on the farm. The e-mail I received was a news release stating that N. Colwell Snell, formerly of Cowley, recently won second place in the Utah Art Council's 53rd annual writing com- petition for his collection of poetry titled "Withdrawal." There were 320 entries in seven categories, with a total of 18 winners. Snell's entry won in the poetry category. He is the past president of the Utah Poetry Society. He was named Utah Poet of the Year in 2007 for his book, "Hand Me My Shadow." His poetry has appeared in many journals and anthologies, including "Weber Studies," "Comstock Re- view," "California Quarterly," and most recently "Fire in the Pasture." He was nominated for a Push Cart Prize in 2007. He and his wife live in Salt Lake City. All of the Snell family members are successful sing- ers, writers and educators. They are extremely poetic. Linda followed in her mother's footsteps and became an English and drama teacher in Montana. Lee also was an English teacher and last year he won the Utah Poet of the Year award. Bill is also a poet and a singer. Beth is not only beautiful, but married and lives in Bozeman and writes with articulation. JC worked as a salesman, a construction man and had many talents. Sadly he died and all of us who knew him miss him dearly. After her husband died at an ear- ly age, Mrs. Snell moved to Montana and taught school for many years. She and her husband are interred in the Cowley Cemetery. what great memories this family has instilled in our hearts. What a wonderful history we all had in our grow- ing years and we formed lasting friendships. It is now 2012 and the weather is quite mild for this time of year until the wind blows. Families gathered for dinners and house parties and some went to Cowtown for that restaurant's famous New Year's Eve dinner. The place was packed and yesterday when we were in there having breakfast, the owners said that they sold all their food and they all looked tired, but happy. Soon the college students will be leaving for their re- spective universities and the students from Laramie have had a month off. We're going to miss them. May all of us have a good year. Last year is now in our memory banks and we press on. Please recycle this newspaper