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Lovell Chronicle
Lovell , Wyoming
July 9, 2020     Lovell Chronicle
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July 9, 2020

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4 The Lovell Chronicl H 2020 We enjoyed our staycation to the Big Horns and Buffalo One of the current buzzwords being bandied about these days is the tourism oriented word “staycation.” ‘ I thought it was surely not a real word but, rather, a word created by chamber of com- merce folks to urge people to vacation locally, within their own region, rather than venturing off across the country or even overseas. And indeed that is what the word means, but it is a real word, at least according to my American Heritage Dictionary. According to American Heritage, a stayca- tion is “a vacation spent in one’s home country rather than abroad, or one spent at home and involving day trips to local attractions.” Got it. And the dictionary helpfully explained the origin of the word as a “blend of stay and vacation." Thanks for the help. The etymology of that one was really difficult to figure out. The word has come into popular use recently, of course, due to travel restrictions caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Looking at a potential summer of decreased visitation and, thus, fewer tourism dollars in the economy, chamber of commerce, travel industry and even economic development leaders are encouraging people to “shop local” with their vacation planning. v It makes perfect sense. After all, the money spent locally by someone from Riverton or Sheridan is just as good as money from Missouri or Minnesota. And so Susan and I took up the challenge. Believing it to be per- haps unwise to travel to California or elsewhere to visit family mem- bers, we planned a short Independence Day holiday staycation to the Big Horns and communities on the east side of the mountain. We started with a hike on the, Bucking Mule Falls National Rec- reation Trail in the Big Horns Friday afternoon, and it was absolutely beautiful, though a bit longer than we had remembered, having not hiked the trail for many years. , . i h I But I god’t‘believe I have ever" seen thé‘mfifitgin wildfloyyg’rs i more vibrant. Fragrant purple Lupinégged Indién‘Paintbrush‘,‘b’right yellow Hoary Balsamroot and many mOre varieties lined the trail and carpeted meadows along the way. At the overlook we chatted with some nice folks from Kaycee and elsewhere traveling as a family group, including three dogs. One of the men turned out to be Chris LeDoux’s son Will, and I told him about the time Chris and his band Western Underground played a concert in Lovell and that l was able to interview his father following the concert. told him I’m not sure I’ve met a finer gentle- man, and I meant it. I also noted that former Deaver-Frannie resident Clay Ward did the forge work for the bronze statue of Chris LeDoux on a bucking bronc that adorns the park in Kaycee. We enjoyed Bear Lodge for dinner and stayed at Elk View for the night, then took a leisurely drive along Forest Road 26 past the Tie Flume and Dead Swede campgrounds and along the beautiful East Fork of the South Tongue River (that’s quite a directional place name). We eyed the crags of the northern group of peaks in the Big Horns, notably Black Tooth Mountain. Our drive took us down the Red Grade to the Big Horn Area, where we visited the marvelous Bradford Brinton Museum, a gem well worth visiting for its Western art, and the historic Wagon Box Fight and Fort Phil Kearny state historic sites, which document the clashes of the “Bloody Bozeman” Trail of the 18605. Ourjourney ended in Buffalo, where we dined and stayed at the David Peck Observations est operating hotel, built in 1880. It was a wonderful place to stay. We returned home on Sunday. That is the story of our mini-staycation, and I would encourage any of our readers to take a look around our own region this summer when planning a vacation. There is a lot to see in our own backyard. WYOMING PRESS ASSOCIATION M E M B E R 2020 2019 Award-winning Newspaper Postmaster: Send address changes to: The Lovell Chronicle, USPS 321-060 234 E. Main, Lovell, Wyoming 82431 307-548-2217 , Published every Thursday Periodical postage paid at Lovell, Wyoming Publisher/Editor: David Peck Reporter: Ryan Fitzmaurice Production: Karlie Hammond, Dustin McClure Staff: Dorothy Nelson, Teressa Ennis, Sam Smith, Annette Moss, Kristin Owens, Ashley Hoffmann www.LovellChrOnic|e.com ornate and historic Occidental Hotel, reported to be Wyoming’s old- CHRONICLE \\\\\\\ \\\ \\\\\\\\\\\\\\ \\‘~ \\\\\\ x \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\ \\\\\\\\\\ WHAT IS IT- EARLY V AMERICAN? % ........ _, /////////////// ,,,, THIS new \\\\\\\\\ LAWN FURNITURE OFYOURSISTERRIFIC! “ \I'SYARDSALE SEASON AGAIN COV ID OR ll! 1 l NOPE - IT’S RECENTLY , RUMMAGE! " 1 i. it .7517" .,,‘ i’r/ .- "nu/In J»... ,,/,ll_’/zzl{{,, 4/, a" v u”, (In/,1 n”; :_ '4.» 7—, — Illllll W (J , . runizzzn ’ld’tlll’llll A.,,;,:I//,/,” ’3. ‘r g :1 yttl/qty—I’II/rr2g5,1,,I, .,/ an“ wwI/u/znn" Ignorance is bliss, but it could hurt Sometimes our memories are hap— py, some not so hap— py and some downright embarrassing. In fact, there are recollections that could leave a per- son with the thought, “Wow. How could I have been that stupid?” Here come sev- eral of my most pain- ' ful memories, some of which involved actual Rhysical pain. RightLStupid... ‘ -' My father’s 'fii‘st‘kautomo— bile was an old Chevy. I was per- haps 7 years old with a brain like a bucket with a hole in it. M dad was watering the lawn 0 our home at the time, and I was on the front seat of the car fooling with the instrument panel. The cigarette lighter caught my eye; I asked dad what would happen if I pushed it in. He warned me to let it be because if pushed the thing would pop out and be quite hot. I didn’t believe him. Long story short: when the lighter popped out it didn’t look hot so I touched the inside tip with my left index finger. Instant pain. Instant blister. Fortunately the water hose was running and nearby. Never did that again. Dad just looked at me and shook his head. Speaking of first cars, I stopped mine one fine after— Guest column Bob Rodriguez noon because there was an odd noise under the hood. Left the engine running and popped said hood and eyeballed the engine and other stuff. I had no idea what I was looking at. But I noticed that a spark plug wire appeared to : be loose as though com- " ingoff a plug. Yeah; I grabbed it to pushit down. Ahhh— _.hth A. (whole. lot. got; .pamiLAboutli My whole arm urt; felt as though my fillings were going to fall out of my teeth. Recovered after a few minutes. A shocking experience. - My eighth-grade teach— er apparently enjoyed torturing children with plenty of home- work. My load for the weekend, due Monday, was put off (by me) until late Sunday afternoon. One of my uncles, his wife and their three children were visiting my parents, all in the dining room adjacent to the room I used for dealing with homework. At one point I closed the door between the rooms because the talking and kid noise was disturbing my concentration. Even with the door shut there still was a faint buzz from the dining area that irritated me as I tried to complete a book re- port, a composition on cooking and several pages of math prob— lems and grammar lessons. (See “torturing children” above). But presently the din diminished so I opened the door and said loud- ly, “Wow, did they finally leave?” Actually no; they were all sitting at the dining table. They stared open-mouthed at me as I turned several shades. of red and man— aged to gulp, “Oh, hi." Closed the door. They left a few minutes later. H I “in. - There are so knocked me, sitti'n ,,to,.the,'ci_1rb.,j” ,miemories that I’ll close 'Wi'tli'dne of my truly unthinking stunts. As a cub reporter at a daily newspa— per I was sent to cover the arrival of a US. Navy ship after extend- ed deployment during the Viet- nam War. I waited for the ship's cap- tain to disembark as the last per- son aboard except for watch per- sonnel. His wife and two teenage children, a boy and a girl, eagerly waited with me on the dock. Conducted a relatively short interview; then asked the cou- ple in all innocence (being kinda’ dumb), “Do you have any special plans for tonight?” Yeah, if looks could kill or melt lead, that ridic— ulous question brought four sets of eyeballs to bear. I offered brief thanks and scurried away. Suggestions: Look before ou leap. Taste your words be ore you let them out of your mouth. Controlling what we can in uncertain times BY CHRIS BROWN, Executive Director of Wyoming Lodging and Restaurant Association, and MIKE MOSER, Executive Director of the Wyoming State Liquor Association Wyoming’s hospitality and tourism industry is the state’s second largest industry. In 2019 we welcomed 9.2 million over- night visitors that spent $3.95 billion in our restaurants, retail shops, drinking establishments, lodging properties and main street businesses. This visitor spending generated $203 million in local and state tax revenue and supported 32,750 full-and part— time jobs. Enter COVID-19. We are halfway though 2020 and our businesses that rely on a booming visitor economy are now struggling for their very survival. Occupancy and aver— age daily rates for lodging prop— erties are well below that of last year. Wyoming’s cities, towns and counties are seeing lower tax revenue to pay for essential ser— , vices, restaurants, bars and clubs are seeing lower volumes of cus- tomers, employees are seeing re— duced hours and all have to adapt to health orders that limit opera- tions in ways that we have never seen...or could have imagined. To add to an already uncer— tain horizon, states like Arizona, Texas, New Jersey, Washington, California, Colorado and Flori— da have all taken steps backward by re—closing (or keeping closed) bars, gyms, movie theaters and the like, after significant spikes in COVID-19 cases. We cannot let this happen in Wyoming. In a time when it’s easy to be overwhelmed by what the future may hold, there are common— sense steps that establishments and patrons across Wyoming have been and can continue to take to help stop the spread of COVID—19 and keep our business— es open. Restaurants and drinking es- tablishments in Wyoming should please consider the following steps: - Emphasize the importance of employees staying home when sick. This will help other staff members from being exposed and being quarantined if the ill— ness is COIVD—19. - Screen employees for ill— ness before each shift. Employ- ees reporting illness should not be allowed to work, to prevent exposing other employees and customers. 0 Follow physical distanc- ing guidelines among customers- and staff. Developing systems for staff to remain six feet'away from each other as much as possible, including during breaks, will lim— it the number of emfployees ex— posed should one 0 your staff develop COVID-IQ. ' Ensure the use of face cov— erings among staff members. Utilize proper sanitization practices. 0 Encourage customers to wear face coverings inside your establishment when away from their table or the bar. Follow all state and county health orders closely. Patrons visiting their favor— ite establishments should please consider the following steps: ' Please respect business practices meant to encourage physical distancing. This not only protects you as a customer but protects other customers and their staff, as well. - Wear face coverings when inside an establishment and away fromyour table or the bar. 0 Stay home when you are sick. - Wash your hands frequently. ' Avoid shaking hands. Avoid gathering in large groups when inside the establishment. Follow all state and county health orders closely. As we continue with summer operations, let us focus on' the things that are within our con- trol. Let’s enjoy the summertime traditions that we look forward to all year in a safe manner that protects our freedoms and will keep Wyoming open for business.