Steamboat Springs With the high runoff on everyone’s minds, the Friends of the Yampa board wants to thank everyone who supported our Big Snow Dance last fall (based on the record snow pack atop Mount Werner, it seems to have been quite a success) and get everyone excited for our upcoming fundraiser at the 31st annual Yampa River Festival from May 26 to 30.
We’d like to think that the enthusiasm showed by the community at our fall event and for our upcoming festival, and dedication to our mission “to protect and enhance the environmental and recreational integrity of the Yampa River, its basin and tributaries through stewardship, advocacy, education and partnerships” has helped spur our success.
For the past 30 years, the board has held the Yampa River Festival on Memorial Day weekend. This year’s festival will start with a movie premiere of “Raven Fork” at 6:30 p.m. May 26 at Bud Werner Memorial Library and continue through the Paddling Life Pro Invitational competition May 30. The competition is sponsored by Steamboat in the Summertime and Chaco Sandals. We’ve become aware that the recently repaired Charlie’s Hole, where the Kayak Rodeo is held, may not be performing up to expectations. We will monitor how the C-Hole works at different flow levels in spring and examine the C-Hole in low water. If necessary, we will be prepared to work with the city to repair the C-Hole in fall and make sure it functions as was originally designed and built. We also are working on other structural improvements to the river, which are of benefit to all users.
Recently receiving our 501(c)(3) nonprofit status, we are currently applying for several grants to improve the recreation and riparian habitats of the river (those interested in donating can email ken@friendsof
theyampa.com). We are working on a Yampa River Awareness documentary film via two familiarization trips this spring and summer, drawing media from across the state to our unique watershed. We also encourage everyone to join the association by visiting our new website at www.friendsoftheyampa.com.Meanwhile, while remembering those who have served in our armed forces this Memorial Day weekend, come on down and watch or participate in our fun-filled events, from family-oriented activities in Little Toots Park to our popular Crazy River Dog contest, downriver races and more. All proceeds go toward protecting and enhancing the Yampa River. Most events are centered near the Bud Werner Memorial Library. There is a complete list of events at our website, and you can sign up or volunteer online. So come on down, enjoy the river festival and see spirited competition in record spring runoff from a record snow year.