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Three generations of duty, honor and country

By CPC | June 1, 2024

The ocean must course through Mimi Espinoza’s blood. Not only because she is the owner of Trestles Coastal Cuisine in The Village Shops, but because she is a proud daughter of three generations of Naval officers, all who retired as Rear Admirals. To commemorate her heritage, Mimi has framed a historical and fascinating composite of…

Happy Canyon Road roundabout update:

By CPC | June 1, 2024

Temporary single-lane traffic beginning May 28 Beginning Tuesday, May 28, Happy Canyon Road, from I-25 to south of Lagae Road, began operating as single-lane traffic to allow crews to complete work for the new roundabout. During the single-lane traffic operations, temporary signals will be set up to allow alternating north- and south-bound traffic on Happy…

More than a dog catcher

By CPC | June 1, 2024
graphic for behind the badge

Bryanna Munns has the perfect job. She is an Animal Law Enforcement (ALE) sergeant for Douglas County Sheriff’s Office (DCSO). Animal control services for DCSO are contracted through the Humane Society of the Pikes Peak Region (HSPPR), that also contracts with El Paso and Pueblo counties and the City of Centennial. ALEs are authorized by…

Older Adult Initiative roadshows

By CPC | June 1, 2024

Are you an older adult in Douglas County? Douglas County wants to stay engaged with you. In 2023, you told the County what you needed to age well here. Four priorities emerged: housing, in-home services, access to information and transportation. Now, the County is hitting the road again with an update to find out what…

Town of Castle Rock adds open space

By CPC | June 1, 2024

The purchase of the spectacular Lost Canyon Ranch property is complete and is the largest one-time acquisition and protection of open space in the Town of Castle Rock’s history. Castle Rock residents regularly name the preservation of open space as a top priority in biannual community surveys. Lost Canyon Ranch, on the Town’s southeastern border…

The age of possibility, it is more than your face

By CPC | June 1, 2024

As the owner of new business Hardwear Beauty (HB), Elle Leary could not imagine doing anything  else other than helping clients bring forth their inner beauty with facial treatments. HB is co-sharing space at Remedy Bar off Lagae Road and Castle Pines Parkway and recently celebrated its official grand opening on May 8. “It sounds cliché,…

Mini Derby

By CPC | June 1, 2024

On May 4, Sky View Farm hosted a Mini Derby fundraising event for Robin’s Nest Foundation, Mile High Rescue and Tall Tales Ranch.  Nearly $35,000 was raised for the three nonprofits. More than 280 guests enjoyed music, wine and whiskey tasting, silent and live auctions, a chance to show off their fancy hats, a viewing…

Fun CPC team building

By CPC | June 1, 2024

Starting out blindfolded and wearing straitjackets, The Castle Pines Connection sales staff embarked on a team-building adventure last month with one of its business partners and advertisers, Clue Clock Escape.  By braving Ten Days in a Mad House, the team escaped with little time to spare, carrying each other (literally and figuratively) through the ordeal,…

Castle Pines welcomes a new bakery

By CPC | June 1, 2024

The City of Castle Pines along with the Castle Pines Chamber officially welcomed Alice + Kate Boutique Bakery to the community last month. Inspired by the recipes of her aunt Alice and grandmother Kate, bakery owner Gretchen Harrison continues the tradition using local ingredients in her handcrafted macarons, chocolates and caramels. Guests were invited to…

Memories and moments

By CPC | June 1, 2024

  Pictures help to tell our story. A snap of our cameras captures those moments that are so important to us. This is what motivates photographer Kristin Mitchell. “I like looking at a photo and having a moment rush back to me,” said Kristin. “I like taking photos of others so that they can have…

Otto the family lap dog

By CPC | June 1, 2024

  Taller than his people when standing on hind legs, and at a healthy weight of 105-110 pounds, Otto, a great Danoodle, considers himself to be the family lap dog. Not a common dog, the great Dane poodle mix is a large hybrid breed recognized by the Designer Breed Registry. Now 6 years old, Otto…

Flights to honor

By CPC | June 1, 2024

Service. Honor. Sacrifice. Emotions swell when thinking about veterans and all they have given for our freedom. A local nonprofit, Rocky Mountain Honor Flight (RMHF), has been taking vets to Washington, D.C. since 2007 to provide a chance to see firsthand the memorials that recognize their service. It is a full-circle moment for those who…

Hats off to Derby-themed Womenade event

By CPC | June 1, 2024

Womenade gathered on May 2 at the HOA 2 Clubhouse in Castle Pines. The Kentucky Derby-themed event raised funds to support Kristi (back row center, in red hat), who suffered severe injuries due to a fall. Kristi, who is self-employed, spoke to the group about her surgeries and expressed appreciation for the support she has…

Colorado living: Fire-adapt your home for wildfires

By CPC | June 1, 2024

  Much of Castle Pines lies within the wildland-urban interface (WUI), where human developments meet and intermingle with wildland vegetation. Wildfires are a naturally occurring peril in WUI communities. While the City of Castle Pines is working on wildfire mitigation in city open spaces, homeowners can take steps to fire-adapt or harden their homes against…

Community baby shower celebrates moms and babies

By CPC | June 1, 2024

  The Castle Rock Relief Society (CRRS) partnered with AdventHealth Castle Rock’s Mommy and Me Market (MMM) and held a community baby shower in April at the hospital. The event served as a depository of nine nonprofit community organizations and agencies that specifically support new families in different ways, from counseling services, peer-to-peer support, basic…

Checked off! – Hiking Devils Head

By CPC | June 1, 2024

I first heard about Devils Head as a child. My mom liked to tell me about daring to hike all the way to the top with some friends – in the 1940s. Seems mom was something of a wild child: getting tossed from a motorcycle, climbing rocks that were off-limits. She would point out the…

June Crossword “For the Dads”

By CPC | June 1, 2024

This crossword brought to you by Allstate Insurance – Tammy Lopez  (720) 733-1331     Across 1. Like some chairs 6. Roll call reply 10. Doomsayer’s sign 14. Ancient Greek marketplace 15. Black ____ Peas 16. Tarzan’s transport 17. Enjoy a companionable meal 19. Icelandic epic 20. Unagi, at a sushi bar 21. “Star-Spangled Banner”…

Tips to avoid scams

By CPC | June 1, 2024

If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Sound advice for all of us. Anyone can fall victim to scams. A 2022 report from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) reported that adults of all ages fall for scams, but the type of scams is different for older and younger adults. Adults 60…

Castle Rock’s founding triumvirate

By CPC | June 1, 2024

  Shakers and movers are colorful folks, visionaries and risk takers seeing and often seizing opportunities that others will not. Castle Rock’s founders John Craig, Jeremiah Gould and Philip Wilcox were prime examples. Pennsylvanian John Craig arrived here in 1859. Tragically, he had lost his wife and daughter in the preceding four years. Within the…

Discover the Ice Age in Douglas County

By CPC | June 1, 2024

  In a little shed in the middle of 35 acres in northwest Douglas County, sit plaster casts of a skull and femur. And not just any casts: but a juvenile Columbian mammoth’s skull and an adult Columbian mammoth’s leg bone from the Ice Age. The land and tours are managed by the Lamb Spring…

New neighbor event welcome

By CPC | June 1, 2024

On April 24, The Castle Pines Connection, the City of Castle Pines and the Castle Pines Chamber of Commerce hosted the bi-annual New Resident Welcome Party at The Ridge at Castle Pines golf course. Approximately 25 new residents attended and enjoyed light appetizers, beverages and lots of gift card giveaways.  

Dear Mrs. A – June

By CPC | June 1, 2024
dear mrs a

Dear Mrs. A, We’ve been invited to stay with our friends at their mountain home and we are curious about proper house guest etiquette and maybe thoughts on a hostess gift? – At a Loss in Lagae Ranch   Well, lucky you! Isn’t it wonderful to have a friend with a place in the mountains…

Tips for finding a reliable babysitter this summer

By CPC | June 1, 2024

  Summer is here, and for parents with young kids, the search is on to find reliable childcare. For many high schoolers and college students, summertime is an opportunity to earn a lot of money babysitting. Too often, parent expectations are not met when hiring a sitter from Nextdoor or Facebook, and it becomes a…

Animals, animals…read all about it

By CPC | June 1, 2024

“Outside of a dog, a book is man’s best friend. Inside of a dog it is too dark to read,” quipped Groucho Marx. Big and small, animals captivate us. This month’s book recommendations focus on animals and our interaction with them. Sometimes they are the main character and sometimes they inform the bipedal characters of…

Still holding hands

By CPC | June 1, 2024

  High school sweethearts Rick and Nancy Hollis celebrated their 55th wedding anniversary on April 19 at Duke’s Steakhouse, where they also celebrated their 50th anniversary. Their first date was on December 19, 1964, when Nancy asked Rick to a Sadie Hawkins dance in Brooklyn, Ohio, a suburb of Cleveland. “We’ve been holding hands ever…

To age well is to engage well

By CPC | June 1, 2024

Oh my; it’s challenging to be long of tooth. Trust me, I know. Especially bad with a mind that revs to redline saddled to an otherwise marginal body. Modern medicine can only do so much with your physical self, but with the right attitude and a Tylenol (or two), healthy diversions can bring back some…

A summer snowstorm

By CPC | June 1, 2024

Summer is almost here, and I can literally taste it. It’s still early in the season, but soon there will be fresh ears of corn to boil and salt; zucchini to grill, fry and make into bread; cucumbers to pickle; peaches to flambe; and beets to roast. My favorite part of summer eating, though, is…

Which seafood is best?

By CPC | June 1, 2024

  Summer and seafood go together. With the warmer days, lighter often cold fare is preferable. Even though we are land-locked in Colorado, we are lucky to have many seafood options. According to the National Library of Medicine, seafood provides an ideal package of nutrients, including high-quality protein, iodine, vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids,…

The art of acupuncture

By CPC | June 1, 2024

  Nearly one out of every 10 adults in the U.S. has tried acupuncture, according to publication Acupuncture Today. Acupuncture dates back in some form for at least 2,500 years as a treatment for a wide range of conditions, including chronic pain, migraines, anxiety, depression, PTSD, insomnia, digestive issues, menstrual cramps, hormone imbalances, fertility and…

Colorado Early Colleges give students a jump on higher education

By CPC | June 1, 2024

  Imagine a high school student who graduates with transferable college credits, or a postsecondary credential such as an associate’s degree or an industry certification. That was the case for Ellie Muncy, who grew up in Happy Canyon and graduated from the Colorado Early Colleges (CEC) Parker campus a few years ago. The early college…

RCHS Prom night 2024

By CPC | June 1, 2024

Amidst snowy conditions, Rock Canyon High School (RCHS) held its prom, “RC goes to New York,” at Mile High Station in Denver on April 27. Music, mocktails and special photo sessions were part of the night’s fun. “Rockin’ Rewind After Prom” was held at RCHS and featured themed decor from the last hundred years of…

Launching science fair excitement

By CPC | June 1, 2024

  Buffalo Ridge Elementary (BRE) school held its 12th annual science fair this spring. Students got excited weeks before the fair with grade level science demonstrations. Kindergarten students had several volunteers come into their classrooms to do demonstrations about diffusion, capillary action and sublimation. Second graders witnessed demonstrations that related to their Earth science curriculum,…

A Girl Scout with a mission

By CPC | June 1, 2024

  Brianna “Bri” Westbarn, who turns 19 this month, has earned the distinction of Gold Award Girl Scout, the highest and most prestigious achievement in Girl Scouts. Her project, “Colorado Cold Cases,” was launched to shed light on unsolved criminal cases involving people who are missing or have died but have not been identified. “I…

An enriching experience like no other

By CPC | June 1, 2024

  Washington, D.C. is the heart of American heritage. It is a living museum where students have walked in the footsteps of some of our great leaders. Traveling for a history trip was an enriching experience for the eighth-grade students of all three American Academy (AA) campuses. STEM coordinator Chris Todd has expanded his flight…

American Academy does Anastasia

By CPC | June 1, 2024

The American Academy cast brought the Anastasia fairy tale to life in three performances at the PACE Center – Parker Arts. The story follows the legend of Russian princess Anastasia, who loses all memories of being a princess when her family’s palace is overrun by the evil wizard Rasputin. Living as Anya, the tale follows…

Fields of fun

By CPC | June 1, 2024

Field day is one of the most anticipated days of the school year, filled with healthy competition of field games and obstacles. Both Timber Trail Elementary and Buffalo Ridge Elementary celebrated the school year coming to an end with a day that did not include paper or pencils, only outdoor fun. By Julie Matuszewski; photos…

The state of Douglas County School District

By CPC | June 1, 2024

Douglas County School District (DCSD) Superintendent Erin Kane gave her first “State of the District” on May 2 at DCSD Legacy Campus in Lone Tree. Kane celebrated successes from the past year and addressed challenges that remain. Several area schools received academic awards from the Colorado Department of Education, including four Castle Pines feeder schools.…

Seniors clap out

By CPC | June 1, 2024

The senior clap out is a ritual that recognizes a graduating high school student’s transition to the next level. In May, seniors returned to their respective elementary schools, Timber Trail Elementary, Buffalo Ridge Elementary and American Academy, for a walk down memory lane, to give high fives to younger students and to visit teachers they…

Road to the Rockies

By CPC | June 1, 2024

Reading is an activity that provides parents and children a way to connect. Reading also helps children build language, literacy and social skills. Road to the Rockies was an optional fun reading program available to all Timber Trail Elementary (TTE) students, kindergarten through fifth grade. Each inning (or month) from September to May students tracked…

Alice + Kate Bakery

By CPC | May 22, 2024

Alice + Kate Bakery: an indulgence in sweetness Gretchen Harrison is an entrepreneur, mother, baker, philanthropist and pink enthusiast. Gretchen is also the owner of Alice + Kate Bakery located at 572 East Castle Pines Parkway, Suite A5 in Castle Pines, which opened in April. Gretchen believes there is no better way to celebrate family…

A mom at every stage of the game

By CPC | May 1, 2024

  This is the story of Lisa McCaffrey. When you hear the McCaffrey name, you may think of Christian, who recently played in Super Bowl LVIII for the San Francisco 49ers. You might remember Ed, who was not only an NFL wide receiver for the Denver Broncos (and the New York Giants and 49ers), but…

Life Time Fitness update

By CPC | May 1, 2024

The development of a Life Time Fitness location has been approved for the northeast corner of Castle Pines Parkway and Canyonside Boulevard in the City of Castle Pines. Although construction approval and permitting has not been completed, the proposed location includes a 110,000-square-foot facility with pickleball courts and an outdoor pool. When reached for comment,…

Construction on Crystal Valley Interchange is underway

By CPC | May 1, 2024

  A significant infrastructure project in Castle Rock, the Crystal Valley Interchange (CVI), is underway. On I-25, two miles south of the Plum Creek Parkway and roughly eight miles north of Tomah Road, the CVI has been a top priority of local authorities with the goal to bring improved regional connection to I-25 and the…

McDonald’s files appeal following Planning Commission denial

By CPC | May 1, 2024

  More than 50 people gathered at the Douglas County Library – Castle Pines to provide public input at the City of Castle Pines Planning Commission (PC) meeting on March 28. Their primary objective: to stop a 24-hour-operated McDonald’s restaurant from coming to the southwest corner of Castle Pines Parkway and Lagae Road. After more…

Community garage sale back by popular demand

By CPC | May 1, 2024

  The Castle Pines community garage sale has been a long-standing, popular event that residents look forward to every year. For decades, families cleared out the old to make way for the new – and make a little money – all while participating in a fun neighborhood event. This year will be no exception. Historically,…

Traffic light going up at key intersection

By CPC | May 1, 2024

At long last, the traffic signal at the three-way intersection of US 85 and Daniels Park Road is underway. At the end of 2022, the Colorado Department of Transportation could not proceed with the project due to supply chain delays and a funding shortfall. The light is expected to be operational in June.   Article…

Castle Pines Homes Association annual meeting

By CPC | May 1, 2024

On the evening of March 4, the Castle Pines Homes Association (CPHA) held its annual meeting at Cielo at Castle Pines. Approximately 375 members and patrons were in attendance. The agenda included a review of the previous year’s accomplishments to enhance the signature amenities of the Village, along with planned capital improvements for 2024 and…

Women owners at Pines Sports Bar & Grill

By CPC | May 1, 2024

  Two Indian women, Priya Kumar and Minakshi Ashra, who had been on different career paths, are now embarking on a new journey together as co-owners of The Pines Sports Bar & Grill, formerly Berg Haus. “I wanted to be an entrepreneur,” said Priya. “Minakshi is helping me understand this line of business. It’s exciting!”…

Apple iOS 17’s hidden features

By CPC | May 1, 2024

Apple’s annual software update creates as much buzz as the release of its new iPhone models. In September 2023, the iOS 17 released the latest software update. While there are many phone upgrades in every new software release, there are some hidden features in iOS 17 to be aware of. The most notable updates on…

Championing children through love and volleyball

By CPC | May 1, 2024

  If you have come across Danni Jenkins, odds are you have found a friend for life. Danni is a Colorado native, having grown up in Parker. She began playing volleyball in fourth grade and continued the sport through Chaparral High School and on to the University of Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Today, she calls…

A taste of home with traditional Lebanese cuisine

By CPC | May 1, 2024

  There are few more enjoyable pastimes than sharing a home-cooked meal with loved ones and friends. Mother of two and talented cook Nancy Saliba shares this sentiment with traditional Lebanese dishes prepared in her home. Nancy grew up in Beirut, Lebanon, where large family gatherings, cooking and attending church services were the center of…

A critical component of DCSO: Community Safety Volunteers

By CPC | May 1, 2024

  The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office (DCSO) has a team of volunteers who are making a huge difference in law enforcement. The Community Safety Volunteers (CSV) are Douglas County residents who are trained to be invaluable assets; they work in tandem with deputies and civilian office staff to help cover many of the tasks and…

Memorial Day 2024 gatherings to remember the fallen

By CPC | May 1, 2024

  Memorial Day Run & March 5K, 10K, 30K: Civilians, veterans and uniformed military are invited to challenge themselves in a friendly competition and encouraged to donate non-perishable food items to homeless veterans. Saturday, May 18, 6:30 a.m. Douglas County High School, 2842 Front St., Castle Rock Visit www.memorialdaymarch.com.   Carry the Load Memorial May…

A day to honor and remember

By CPC | May 1, 2024

While popularly considered the unofficial beginning of summer, Memorial Day has a long and solemn history that reaches back to the time of the Civil War. It is unclear exactly where and when the tradition started, but not long after the end of the war, during springtime tributes, Americans began decorating the graves of the…

Shadow Chasers

By CPC | May 1, 2024

Residents and friends met unexpectedly in Arkansas to see the 2024 total solar eclipse.   In the fields of Russellville, Arkansas, population 30,000, a small group of Castle Pines residents found connections by way of the April 8 total solar eclipse. Most of the viewers had planned to view in Texas, but weather changes sent…

Colorado living: Xeriscape is one way to garden

By CPC | May 1, 2024

Did you know that the concept of xeriscaping started in Colorado? In 1981, Associated Landscape Contractors of Colorado partnered with Denver Water in the Xeriscape Task Force to create an educational demonstration garden showing the beauty possible when using plants that require minimal irrigation, and to produce a public involvement and education program. A member…

Sedalia’s historic museum and gardens

By CPC | May 1, 2024

  In the quaint town of Sedalia sits a historic little building and grounds, the Sedalia Museum and Gardens (SMG). Getting to know this special place is like taking a step back in time. Save the date for this year’s garden sale, Saturday, May 18 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., located at 4037 N.…

A pit bull and a bichon frisé: happy together

By CPC | May 1, 2024

Amy Fenster is a ball of energy. She is an adventurer, a hiker and provides daily care for patients at UCHealth Highlands Ranch Hospital. Amy is a nurse working in a combined lab of cardiac catheterization, neuro intervention and intervention radiology. Each day she shines her bright light on those lucky enough to receive her…

When you come to a fork in the road, take it!

By CPC | May 1, 2024

  The headline comes from Yogi Berra, but it applies equally to the good folks of Jarre Valley and Jarre Canyon. Douglas County settlers were naturally attracted to water and transportation access: Witness Sedalia’s founder, John Craig, who settled at the confluence of East and West Plum Creeks. The east side of the creeks was…

May Dear Mrs. A

By CPC | May 1, 2024
dear mrs a

Dear Mrs. A, Is it ever appropriate to text a thank you for a wedding gift? – Wondering in Winterberry   Dear Wondering in Winterberry, Wedding season is upon us. Mrs. A. is completely old-fashioned, and she is quite emphatic when it comes to these things. So, you may be surprised that in some cases,…

Nature’s tiny acrobat: The hummingbird

By CPC | May 1, 2024

  With the return of spring, many Coloradans look forward to welcoming back the hummingbirds that flew south for the winter. The hummingbird season in Colorado is mid-April through October. These fascinating, zippy little creatures start to command attention in mid-April. Four species of hummingbirds can be seen in Colorado. The most common is the…

2024 Farmers Markets

By CPC | May 1, 2024

Arvada Farmers Market Location: Olde Town Square, 5702 Olde Wadsworth Blvd., Arvada Sundays from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. (June 2 – Sept. 29) A moderately-sized market with a variety of specialty items, this market features produce, honey, baked goods, artisan products and prepared foods. Enjoy libations in Olde Town Arvada. https://www.arvadafarmersmarket.com/   Boulder County…

Pulitzer Prize-winning books

By CPC | May 1, 2024

Joseph Pulitzer, a visionary newspaper publisher and Hungarian immigrant, single-handedly raised the bar for American journalism. Establishing the first collegiate-level journalism program at Columbia University, Pulitzer further endowed the university with guidelines and funds to establish the Pulitzer Prize “as an incentive to [journalistic] excellence,” states the Pulitzer website. There are currently 23 categories, most…

“Egging” for a mission

By CPC | May 1, 2024

  Some residents got a little help decorating their yards this past Easter. The Easter Bunny could not take all the credit, but some Valor Christian High School (Valor) Eagles sure could. Sixteen students raised money for an upcoming summer mission trip to Kolkata, India by “egging” yards across Douglas County. This definition of egging…

Mom’s Day without crying “Mayday”

By CPC | May 1, 2024

I love the month of May. The weather, while often unpredictable, is generally lovely (random Colorado snowfall notwithstanding). It is also a month of celebrations – Mother’s Day, milestones like graduation, and all things end-of-the-school-year, mean lots of happy reminiscences. And parties. Lots of parties, with lots of delicious springtime treats. I love that May…

May Crossword

By CPC | May 1, 2024

This crossword brought to you by Allstate Insurance – Tammy Lopez (720) 733-1331     Across 1. Killer whale 5. Popular cooking spray 8. Native New Zealander 13. Like a millionaire’s pockets 14. Beak 15. The _____ Limits (1960s and 1990s tv show) 16. Big show 17. “___ go bragh” 18. Pointed arch 19. Sinful…

Two brothers, two cities, two national championships

By CPC | May 1, 2024

  On March 24, two brothers from The Canyons neighborhood won hockey national championships on the same day in different cities. Goalie Cooper Robinson (18) was part of the Valor Christian High School team to lead the Screaming Eagles to victory at USA Hockey National Championship, High School Division 1, in Philadelphia (see our other…

Valor hockey team wins national championship

By CPC | May 1, 2024

Valor Christian High School celebrated another big win this year: a hockey national championship on March 24. After a tough loss to Regis Jesuit High School in the 5A state championship game in Colorado, the Valor Screaming Eagles competed in the USA Hockey National Championship, High School Division 1, in Philadelphia. Six seniors on the…

May is Mental Health Awareness Month

By CPC | May 1, 2024

The stigma around talking about mental health is lifting. And that is a positive since according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in five people will experience a mental health condition in any given year, and everyone faces challenges in life that can impact mental health. Since May is Mental Health Awareness…

Grateful students honor teachers

By CPC | May 1, 2024

  The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints recently held its annual teacher appreciation night. High school seniors and early graduating juniors from Castle Rock, Larkspur, Castle Pines, Lone Tree and Highlands Ranch honored a teacher, coach or mentor who made a positive impact in their lives. The evening included a formal program with…

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