Democrats to dine for

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— Routt County Democrats have lined up some impressive names to speak at their biggest fundraiser of the year.

U.S. Rep. John Salazar, a Democrat who represents Steamboat Springs and Colorado's Third Congressional District in Wash-ington, D.C., joins state Speaker of the House Andrew Romanoff, state Rep. Morgan Carr-oll and state treasurer candidate Cary Kennedy as speakers for the Jefferson/Jackson Dinner on Saturday at the Steamboat Springs Community Center.

"We have what we think is a pretty dynamic evening of speakers," said Ken Brenner, chairman of the county party and president of the Steamboat Springs City Council. "We've been working very hard on this (event)."

Party secretary Lynn Abbot said funds from the event, which includes silent and live auctions, will go to Democratic campaigns in a contentious election year.

The dinner had its debut last year and raised $1,500. With the addition of the auctions this year, Abbott said, county Democrats are hoping to double that figure.

County Commissioner Doug Monger will auctioneer the live auction. Items up for bid include a signed painting of the original Steamboat hot spring by local artist R.C. Dieckhoff; a Broncos weekend including tickets for a to-be-determined 2006 game, lodging at the Oxford Hotel and dinner at the Wynkoop Brewing Co.; and a fly-fishing trip provided by Straightline Outdoor Sports in Steamboat and Yampa River Outfitters in Craig.

Abbott said Democratic candidates will attend, including Routt County Planning Commission Vice President Diane Mitsch Bush and former City Council President Bill Martin for county commissioner, Gary Wall for county sheriff and Mike Kerrigan for county assessor.

Abbott said Carroll -- who was named last year's "Rising Star" by the state party -- may steal the show.

"She is the kind of person who makes you jump out of your seat and say: 'Yes, I want to be involved!'" Abbott said.

Brenner said that energy should be contagious among left-wingers.

"As a Democrat, if you can't get excited about the opportunities that exist in this fall's election, you probably never will," Brenner said.

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