Jerry Nettleton, of Steamboat Springs and Peabody Energy's Twentymile Coal Co., was presented the Preservation Leadership Award by Historic Routt County on Tuesday night for his years of volunteer efforts on the preservation of the Foidel Canyon Schoolhouse in western Routt County.

Photo by Tom Ross

Jerry Nettleton, of Steamboat Springs and Peabody Energy's Twentymile Coal Co., was presented the Preservation Leadership Award by Historic Routt County on Tuesday night for his years of volunteer efforts on the preservation of the Foidel Canyon Schoolhouse in western Routt County.

Historic Routt County looks ahead to 3 new projects

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— Now that Historic Routt County nearly has completed the restoration of the Foidel Canyon Schoolhouse, it’s ready for more challenges.

Executive Director Meg Tully told an audience of about 25 people at the nonprofit’s annual meeting in the Steamboat Art Museum on Tuesday night that three ambitious projects are waiting in the wings.

Tully said Historic Routt County has agreed to serve as the fiscal agent and project manager overseeing the restoration of Crossan’s M&A Market in Yampa with the Yampa Historic Museum and the Friends of Crossan's group. The project just received a $200,000 grant from the State Historical Fund. John Dobell Contracting will serve as the general contractor, and work could begin within several weeks, Tully said.

Historic Routt County also has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Yampa Valley Land Trust, Tully said, to manage restoration at the Rehder Ranch on the east side of Lake Catamount, where the first priority will be stabilization of a historic barn.

Finally, she said there’s an agreement in place with the U.S. Forest Service for Historic Routt County to coordinate volunteers in conjunction with the Hahn's Peak Area Historical Society on the restoration of the fire lookout atop Hahn’s Peak itself.

Like Crossan's was before it, the fire lookout has been nominated for addition to Colorado’s list of most endangered places, and news on the fate of that nomination is expected sometime in February 2014.

“Our board is willing to take risks, and this year has been a foundation year for us,” Tully told the gathering. “We’ve bitten off a lot, and we’re moving on to another level, and it’s very exciting for me.”

Tully gave a great deal of credit to Jerry Nettleton, this year’s recipient of the Preservation Leadership Award, for helping Historic Routt County to take the next step.

“He’s kind of our lead guy on Foidel,” she said. “Whatever you need, from gravel to breakfast, Jerry can find it. He’s always smiling and always getting the work done.”

Nettleton agreed that nearing the completion point on the school in western Routt County, not far from Peabody Energy’s Twentymile Mine, where he is manager of environmental affairs, has elevated the capabilities of Historic Routt County.

“Linda Long and Arianthe Stettner and I hatched a plan for how to move forward on Foidel,” he said. “We have a template now to know that we can do this.”

Tully said the work on Crossan's will provide many challenges but also should provide her organization with valuable experience in performing up to the expectations of the state grant.

“We keep butting up against roadblocks, and we keep butting right through them,” she said.

To reach Tom Ross, call 970-871-4205, email tross@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @ThomasSRoss1

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