Gold Hill Newsletter

Posted on: July 19th, 2016


Minutes of the June 13, 2016 Town Meeting

Next Town Meeting is Monday, August 8, 2016, 7:30 p.m. at the Community Center


In the absence of Chair Peter Swift, Vice-Chair Bear Carlson called the meeting to order. Fourteen people attended: one anonymous person at his request, John and Cherry Sand, Dina Elder, Pam Sherman, Dan Maedke, Chrissy McCaul, Bobby Vrba, David Wilson, Bear Carlson, Treasurer Martha Knapp, Member at Large Tony Vrba, Jojo Morrison, and Secretary Gretchen Diefenderfer.

Minutes of the April 11 meeting were approved as published.

Treasurer’s Report – Martha reports:

At the previous Town Meeting in APRIL our bank balance was $13,720.23 and a balance of $85 held for us in trust at the Ward Church.

Revenue since then includes funds from t-shirt and pint glass sales. Expenses include fencing materials for the cemetery and the annual report filing fee. Our current bank balance is $13,488.61. Monies held in trust at the Ward Church remains at $85.00 bringing our total cash assets to $13,563.61.

Current individual fund totals are as follows:

General Fund $1,967.20; Cemetery $4,378.09; Community Relief $3,576.95; Forest Management $94.12; Safe Link (funds for SafeSite, AirLink, NeighborLink projects) $3,547.25; and a zero balance in Community Planning.


Community Planning/Trails – Tony reports that the Gold Rush – the Annual Gold Hill Bake/Rummage/Crafts Sale – will be Sunday, September 11. It will include all the regular events including the cookout and music. Any suggestions? Let Tony know.

Historical Zoning – Bear reports that the new owners of the old Weaver residence, Marcus Moench and Elisabeth Gaspari, are in process with the County. They plan to demolish the old tin shed and rebuild it. They are working on a septic system and changing the windows.

Forest Management/CWPP – no report

Fire Department – Rick Geesaman, Fire Board Member, sent an email about the plan for a cistern for firefighting. Open Space people have given their approval. In the next few months they will be putting their plan together in order to get the necessary permits from the Planning Department. He will have a presentation for the next meeting. Gretchen added that they are thinking about locating the cistern higher up in the meadow in an old mine hole (where it might be easier to put in since the ground has been disturbed for so many years), which would mean being able to provide water for firefighting to all the houses in Hill Street.

John asked about the accident out west of town. Bobby and Gretchen reported that it was off the old dump road. There is a huge hole, maybe 20’ deep, which drops straight down, out there and 3 people in an old truck drove into it in the middle of the night – two were killed and the third was badly injured. It was a terrible accident. Bobby has since put fence posts around it and the State Forest Service will be filling it in in August of this year.

Weed Management – Pam reports that there is a new focus on pollinator conservation – a fruitful new tactic – and people are interested. As far as Leafy Spurge, some people pull and bag it, Pam cuts it before it sets seed, and has been able to keep it under control.

Historic Gold Hill – John reports that the Museum is open on weekends from 11-4, plus 4th of July and Memorial Day. Some needed repairs and painting have been accomplished. There are two awesome new exhibits – stop by – one on the Bluebirds and another on Frank Boyd, who ran the Boyd General Store. We now have Frank Boyd’s wonderful old cash register on loan for the summer. Martha added that it is great to see how far our museum has come. Several events are planned for the summer. We will host the ANFRM (Association of Northern Front Range Museums) meeting at the Beer Garden on June 20, on July 14 there will be a cocktail party and presentation by Kirk Ambrose, a CU Professor, on Matilda Vanderpoel. And on August 6 the artists that Laurie Britton Newell has gathered will open the Black Cube Gold Hill art exhibits and workshops. There are new items in the gift shop, bluebird t-shirts and tea towels. The 2017 Gold Hill Calendar will be out by the 4th of July.

Mining – Gretchen reports that everything seems about the same up there. There are a few people there regularly fixing things up and there have been frogs in the pond!

Gold Hill School – Chrissy reports that, due to the early arrival of their wonderful Gabriel, she had to bail early on the end of school, but Mishie and Jojo did a phenomenal job of taking over. They held the camping trip, field trips and finished big projects. Chelsea Rubin helped, too, and they hope to have her again next year. Huge thanks! They raised some ducks from eggs and studied plant life cycles. A greenhouse has been purchased and Matt Legg will help put it together this summer. K, 1, 2 is really full and 4 and 5 are also full. Chrissy and Jojo secured a grant for $5,000 for three years to support their study of Primitive Living, Native Americans, fly fishing and archery. They will be bringing in a Teepee. All is well

SafeLink – Pam reports that she put out word for people interested in animal rescue in emergencies and got five volunteers! They will be putting out information. One of the volunteers is Denver Haslam (a Justin family member) who reports that he is working away to fix up the Justin place and the family is hoping to get out to Gold Hill more.

IMA – no report.

Community Planning/Fundraising – Tony suggested that we should have a new category (this would include the Gold Rush, our main fundraising activity, as well as purchasing items like t-shirts and the beer glasses for sale) and would like to see funds in the account to facilitate these functions. A motion was made and seconded to establish a new fund, and passed unanimously. Martha moved that we fund the Fundraising Account to $1000. Chrissy seconded and it also passed unanimously. Tony will order more t-shirts and beer glasses and also be able to purchase the necessary items for the Gold Rush and then submit invoices to be reimbursed from this fund.


Resiliancy Report – Dina reports that the resiliency group came about because Boulder County formed a group called BoCo Strong following the 2013 floods. The purpose of the BoCo Strong group is to build a culture of resilience throughout Boulder County. They selected several communities, primarily in the mountains, to be part of a year long pilot study. There are three volunteers in the Gold Hill area participating in the program and leadership training – Virginia Schultz, Jessica Brookhart, and Dina Elder. The purpose of the pilot study is to help communities identify resiliency projects and find funding for them. These 3 people submitted their Resiliency Report at the last meeting (non-meeting, actually, as we didn’t have a quorum). The highlights of that report are that most people are prepared to be self sufficient for five days, but not many are prepared for 30 days. The main concerns reported were 1. Utilities, 2. Medical Emergencies, and 3. Fire. Contact Dina with information and Gretchen will put a link on the website with the survey information under Emergency Preparedness. One question is how many people want to stay here as long as possible – age in place – and what services would be needed for us to do that? Chrissy interjected to ask if anyone knows of any houses for sale – they are looking for one! The County reports that 14% of our population is over 65 and 14% is under 20 – quite a range. Some grants are available through United Way, for projects like AirLink (our Ham radio group), and she will be applying for some new equipment. The group would love to come up with methods for neighbor to neighbor communication if the power is out.

Dina thinks we need more discussion – the deadline for applying for grants is sometime in August, which would mean the money would be awarded sometime in November. Should we look into local utilities of any kind? Another possibility – how to provide services? Possible co-op? We would need a paid manager to make it work. Jamestown is looking into this also and is interested in going in with us to figure it out. They’ve considered putting together a preparedness kit for everyone. Now that we are a 501(c)3, could the GHTM oversee grants? Probably. The group will have a table at the 4th of July pancake breakfast with information. There is a BoCo Strong workshop on mapping our assets on June 20 and Dina will go.

Reactivation of the Community Planning account – done (above)

Purchase more t-shirts and glasses – Tony was empowered to order them

Spring Clean Up – Gretchen reports that it has been scheduled for Saturday, July 23, from 9-3 at the Bluebird Lodge parking lot. Volunteers are needed!


Town Hall/Community Center survey – Tony reports that she is working on it. She will ask the town for input – we need to know if there is a real interest.

Art Project – Jojo reports that she has a contract from Black Cube, basically stating that they have liability insurance for the project, that needs to be agreed to and signed by the Town Council. Starting August 6, there will be pop-up art exhibits all over – modern art based on the history of Gold Hill – one at Chuck and Torkin’s shed, one in the wedge of property that the Few’s own, and one on the town lot behind the Red Store. Headquarters will be in Kirby’s field and kick-off is Saturday, August 6. They will be open on Saturdays and Sundays for one month. They are looking for tour guides and volunteers. They will have flyers and maps, etc. Laurie, our very own internationally known museum curator, has masterminded this and will be back in town on the 26th of July.

John moved that we sign the contract with Black Cube. Chrissy seconded it, and it was approved. Bear will take it to Peter Swift.

Jojo was asked how many people this might attract and she responded that they really don’t know. They will have a plan to manage the parking, etc.

Announcement – Bear reports that the town PortaPoti has been serviced and is ready for the summer.


Respectfully submitted, Gretchen Diefenderfer, Secretary.


P.S.  If you know anyone who should be mailed the Newsletter, or if you are getting it mailed and could get it by email, please let me know.  Communication is important for our community.  Thanks