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A day of Seussiness

By CPC | April 1, 2021
Photo of Tucker Sulya adds color and character to his Dr. Seuss

By Julie Matuszewski; photos courtesy of Erin Dill and American Academy Read Across America Day was created to encourage children to read and is celebrated by many on March 2 along with the birthday of Dr. Seuss – his 117th this year. American Academy first grade students held their own special celebration with a day…

Kindergarten celebrates 100 days

By CPC | April 1, 2021
Andre P. boldly declares his survival of the first 100 days of kindergarten

By Celeste McNeil; photos courtesy of BRE Celebrating the 100th day of school has become an annual tradition in many elementary schools across the nation in the past dozen or so years. Castle Pines schools are no different. Typically, in February the youngest students celebrate this milestone with a day of curriculum and fun focused…

Developing entrepreneurs

By CPC | April 1, 2021
Photo of Cool Cactuses producers Taylor Wooldridge and Olivia Keene

By Julie Matuszewski; photos courtesy of Lisa Hess and Wenda Wilson The library of Timber Trail Elementary (TTE) recently transformed its space into a unique marketplace for fellow first graders to shop multiple second grade student-run businesses. As a part of Project Based Learning (PBL), second grade teachers Lisa Hess and Wenda Wilson’s students became…

Books and Battles

By CPC | April 1, 2021
fourth grader Matthew Liepen holds one of his favorite reads

Information provided from DCS Montessori; photo courtesy of the Liepen family Douglas County Montessori (DCSM) fourth grader Matthew Liepen holds one of his favorite reads from the Books and Battles competition. “I enjoyed the competition the library organized,” commented Liepen. “The 13th Story Tree House was my favorite book in the battle. The whole series…

Voters to decide on water district inclusion proposal

By CPC | March 1, 2021

By Chris Michlewicz; photo and graphic courtesy of Castle Pines Metropolitan District Water and sewer customers in Castle Pines will soon decide whether to approve the proposed inclusion of the Castle Pines North Metropolitan District (CPNMD) into the Parker Water & Sanitation District (PWSD). The neighboring entities first began discussing the subject of inclusion in…

Trader Joe’s proposal is all the buzz

By CPC | March 1, 2021

By Chris Michlewicz; graphic by Tim Gamble Signs that Trader Joe’s is considering a new location in northern Douglas County have created a buzz in the community. Trader Joe’s, a specialty “fresh format” grocery store chain based in California, submitted a liquor license application with the Town of Parker (Town) for a proposed location northeast…

Ice arena could open by summer 2023

By CPC | March 1, 2021

By Chris Michlewicz; rendering courtesy of DAWG Nation Hockey Foundation If all goes as planned, the City of Castle Pines will be home to a world-class ice arena by summer 2023. The proposal from DAWG Nation Hockey Foundation (DAWG Nation) is to build a multi-sheet hockey facility – purpose-built to support both disabled and able-bodied…

Out with Shell, in with 7-Eleven

By CPC | March 1, 2021
7-Eleven Logo

By Chris Michlewicz; photo by Carin R. Kirkegaard

Canyon Village takes shape

By CPC | March 1, 2021

Information and photo provided by Shea Homes

Advisory council seeks volunteers

By CPC | March 1, 2021

Information provided by Douglas County The Douglas County CSU Extension Advisory Council is accepting applications for all positions to fill its board. The mission of the advisory council is to provide information and education in addition to encouraging the application of research-based knowledge in response to local, state, and national issues. Council members serve as…

Castle Pines Cleaners

By CPC | March 1, 2021
Photo of Kay and Jack Yi

Simple pleasures and work Article and photo by Kathy Fallert Jack and Kay Yi stay very busy with dry cleaning and wet cleaning. The second owners of Castle Pines Cleaners, the Yis have been in business for 15 years. Both originally from South Korea, the couple met and married in Seattle 27 years ago. Kay’s…

Castle Pines Chamber Annual Meeting and Awards

By CPC | March 1, 2021

Information provided by the Castle Pines Chamber of Commerce The Castle Pines Chamber of Commerce annual meeting and awards ceremony celebrated local businesses and individuals in a virtual event that included a pre-taped Academy Awards presentation that recognized these outstanding organizations and people in the community. The winners of the 2021 Castle Pines Chamber of…

Welcome to The Castle Pines Connection team

By CPC | March 1, 2021

By Terri Wiebold The Castle Pines Connection welcomes Hollen Wheeler and Steve Chezik to our team. Hollen joins The Connection as a writer. She and her family moved to Castle Pines from Texas in 2017. A 20-year veteran in politics and public affairs, Hollen worked on Capitol Hill before being politically appointed to a former…

Country club breaks ground on expansion –

By CPC | March 1, 2021

Family-friendly amenities Article and photo by Chris Michlewicz A groundbreaking ceremony kicked off the much-anticipated expansion of The Country Club at Castle Pines (CCCP). Years in the making, the extensive, $17.1 million project officially began February 12 with shovels in the ground on a frigid but beautiful day, with about 30 club dignitaries, project leaders,…

Boston Terrier the American Gentlemen

By CPC | March 1, 2021

By Julie Matuszewski; photos courtesy of Kyle Jones Meet Paxton, a Boston terrier that lives in the Castle Pines community with his owners Kyle Jones and Kevin Gandomcar. Named after former Denver Broncos quarterback Paxton Lynch, his perfect markings give him the appearance of wearing formal wear, as if he were a distinguished gentleman. It…

Animals, Animals Everywhere

By CPC | March 1, 2021

By Bryan Goodland; photo by Chris Michlewicz Right in the midst of the hustle and bustle of downtown Denver is a place where the buffalo roam and the deer and antelope … well you know the rest. Celebrating its 125th anniversary this year, the Denver Zoo is home to more than 3,000 animals spread across…

From grout to granite: A kitchen countertop remodel

By CPC | March 1, 2021

By Lisa Nicklanovich; photos courtesy of Trish Jones One of the deciding factors for replacing the countertops in Brambleridge resident Trish Jones’ kitchen was trying to keep the grout between the tiles clean. A granite solid surface has remedied that problem and given Trish and her husband, Kerry, an updated kitchen. There are many choices…

Sitting on surfaces that should not be sat on

By CPC | March 1, 2021

Dear Reader, You’re going to have to bear with me as I am going on a little bit of a rant this month. I know there are things people do that drive us all crazy – like not holding the door, or returning the shopping cart. This month I’d like to talk about one of…

Five bright sunbonnets: The life of Emma Doud Gould

By CPC | March 1, 2021
Photo of Emma Jane Gould, age 76

By Joe Gschwendtner; photos courtesy of Fern Adams Seventy-six years old with 42 grandchildren makes for an epic story at any time. Perhaps being born on July 4, 1857 was a portent. Spring 1865 found Emma Jane in Waterloo, Iowa with sisters Ida, Eva, Etta and Nellie in a Conestoga wagon, wearing sunbonnets heading west.…

Love mea culpa

By CPC | March 1, 2021

Editor’s Note: Last month, The Connection featured Charleys Gurley Love and his wife Dr. Minnie Celia Francesca Love in “To Sedalia with Love.” We chronicled their lives together and Minnie Love’s work following her husband’s death, including her accomplishments in the medical field, her activism in women’s suffrage, her participation in local government and her…

Knitters craft life-long friendships

By CPC | March 1, 2021

By Lisa Nicklanovich; photo courtesy of Sarah Garrett Photography The knitting club, known simply as “KC” has been meeting for 16 years. The group came together to celebrate a member’s wedding. Pictured from left to right: Liz Decker, Kelly McCracken, Jolie Rotar (bride), Grace Holcomb, Jen Munro and Laina Doyle. “We don’t have a cool…

March CP word search mania

By CPC | March 1, 2021

Tyrannosaurus Sue at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science

By CPC | March 1, 2021
Photoo of the Sue, the worlds largest T. rex fossil

Article and photos by Shaun Kernahan On August 12, 1990, on a cliffside in South Dakota, Sue Hendrickson and a team from the Black Hills Institute discovered arguably the most famous dinosaur fossil in history. At 40 feet long from tail to nose and 13 feet tall at the hips and over 90% recovered, Sue…

Sharing Our Scars

By CPC | March 1, 2021

By Stacie Chadwick Last night, my husband and I went to a socially-distanced dinner with friends. As one moment led to another, we literally and figuratively took our masks off, and the conversation moved more deeply than the cocktail chatter that seems to permeate polite communication. We quickly flowed through the requisite kids and COVID-19…

Here kitty, kitty…

By CPC | March 1, 2021
Bobcat Kitten

By Carin R. Kirkegaard; photo courtesy of Lori Dishneau Pictures of bobcats passing through yards and sunning on decks have been filling the social media pages of many community neighbors the past few weeks. It is uncertain how many bobcats are actually out roaming the neighborhoods, but there have been photos with anywhere from one…

National Alliance on Mental Illness

By CPC | March 1, 2021

Volunteers provide hope for those with mental health struggles By Chris Michlewicz A small army of volunteers from Douglas and Arapahoe counties is helping those with mental health struggles find hope during uncertain times. Volunteers for the local chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness — or NAMI — not only find the work…

License to be creative

By CPC | March 1, 2021

By Lynn Zahorik; courtesy photos Cars of every shape, color and brand travel the streets and highways of Colorado. What they all have in common is a license plate displaying a series of letters or numbers indicating that the car has been registered with the state. People spend a lot of time in their vehicles,…

O’Brien’s Cafe

By CPC | March 1, 2021

A little taste of home Article and photos by Chris Michlewicz Everyone knows the adage “Home Is Where the Heart Is.” It turns out the same can be said for Sedalia’s hometown diner. By the time Donna Ingman opened O’Brien’s Cafe in 1994, she had already forged close relationships with hundreds of people in and…

The art of the tiered tray

By CPC | March 1, 2021

By Hollen Wheeler; courtesy photos The hot trend in home decor is the tiered tray, a relatively easy and stylish way to add an accent display to an empty space in the kitchen or as a centerpiece on the dinner table or entryway.  Tiered tray decorating is simple and doesn’t require a degree in interior…

Shepherd’s pie in miniature: A sure symbol of good luck

By CPC | March 1, 2021

Article and photos by Lisa Crockett I have, as far as I can tell, no Irish blood. I don’t have red hair, green eyes, or particularly good luck. In March though, everyone is a bit Irish. I’ve perfected a handful of delicacies from the Emerald Isle that I cook just once a year on the…

Leprechaun bait

By CPC | March 1, 2021

Article and photos by Lisa Crockett

Popcorn Lovers

By CPC | March 1, 2021

By Lisa Nicklanovich; photos courtesy of Popcorn Bliss The second Thursday in March is Popcorn Lovers Day, and who doesn’t love popcorn? This time-honored and versatile snack can be enjoyed plain, sweet, salty, savory or a combination of flavors. So many more options exist though … To begin with, popcorn can be flavored to your…

Dr. Seuss characters live on…

By CPC | March 1, 2021

National Read Across America Day By Lisa Nicklanovich; photos by Shaun Kernahan March 2 has become National Read Across America Day in honor of Theodor Seuss “Ted” Geisel, or Dr. Seuss. The American children’s author, political cartoonist, illustrator, poet, animator and filmmaker was born March 2, 1904, in Springfield, Massachusetts. Geisel adopted his pen name…

Social groups for seniors help combat isolation

By CPC | March 1, 2021

By Chris Michlewicz A social group that promotes healthy aging through connection hopes its members “enter as strangers” and “leave as friends.” CircleTalk is a program designed to disrupt loneliness and isolation in the lives of older adults, and it has become a critical tool during a time when social isolation is more pronounced than…

Couple inspires others through community clean-ups

By CPC | March 1, 2021
Photo of Blair and Marilyn Marsden

By Chris Michlewicz; photos courtesy of the Castle Pines North Metropolitan District When you lead by good example, others will often follow. That’s what happened when Marilyn and Blair Marsden, who have lived in the Stonecroft neighborhood of Castle Pines for 12 years, saw messages last summer on a neighborhood social media platform stating the…

Perseverance leads to sustainability

By CPC | March 1, 2021
Rusty and Donna Walker hit the links at The Country Club at Castle Pines

By Chris Michlewicz; photos courtesy of Rusty Walker It might not have been obvious to him as a kid, but the hard work and dedication that helped Rusty Walker become a standout youth athlete helped prime him for later success in the business world. Walker, a 13-year resident of The Village at Castle Pines and…

Amelia Graser: Special needs educator

By CPC | March 1, 2021
Photo of Special Needs teacher Amelia Graser

By Celeste McNeil; photo courtesy of Amelia Graser Amelia Graser has spent her life in education. As a child in Los Angeles, she helped in her mother’s third grade class, running ditto copies, sharpening pencils, organizing and cleaning erasers. She played school in the playhouse her father built her. Teaching was a natural choice for…

The strong bond of friendship

By CPC | March 1, 2021

Meeting at The Exchange in Castle Pines for a bite to eat, longtime Surrey Ridge friends enjoy sharing stories, catching up on family news and reminiscing. Being friends for many years, the ladies feel “comfortable in our own skin” when they gather. These longtime friends share ideas, companionship and laughter. “Having friends is like having…

Guardian of The Village at Castle Pines

By CPC | March 1, 2021
Photo of Erak Hillman and his fiancée, Susan Kim

By Nancy Koontz; photo by Terri Wiebold There’s a bright light and a smiling gate guard who greets residents of The Village at Castle Pines and visitors at gate 4, Sunday through Thursday. The very loved and appreciated, Erak Hillman celebrated more than a decade of service as the main gate guard this past September.…

Wanting a change leads to owning a Castle Pines business

By CPC | March 1, 2021

By Lisa Nicklanovich; photos courtesy of the Ringgenberg family “For a while I wanted to move to a small town but then I realized I do live in a small town,” Laura Ringgenberg said with a smile. Laura has been a Castle Pines resident since 2004 and has lived in a few different neighborhoods before…

Warmer days ahead for Janice and Chatt Wright

By CPC | March 1, 2021

By Nancy Koontz; courtesy photos Arizona will gain a ray of sunshine from the Castle Pines community this spring. The former president of the Village Castle Pines Garden Club and a big proponent of the Cherokee Ranch & Castle Foundation, Janice Wright – along with her husband, Chatt – will be moving to their new…

Plan for a nutritious and delicious month

By CPC | March 1, 2021

By Lisa Nicklanovich; photo courtesy of Chris Dudley National Nutrition Month is a great time to try to incorporate some healthy changes into the usual routine. Try the suggestions below for each week of the month. Encouragement and ideas have been provided by Chris Dudley, resident and Castle Rock firefighter who has been coaching nutrition,…

RCHS Girls Basketball up and running

By CPC | March 1, 2021

By Claire Bauer, RCHS intern writer; photo courtesy of RCHS With the second semester of the 2020-2021 school year in full swing, Rock Canyon High School (RCHS) sports are up and running – literally. Girls basketball players are actively training and competing. The amount of strength and dedication these Jaguars have put into their sport…

High school sports games streamed live, locally

By CPC | March 1, 2021

Article and photo by Shaun Kernahan When the Rock Canyon High School (RCHS) varsity boys basketball team tips off each game this season, the stands are not filled to capacity. Only a select number from each player’s family are allowed into the gym. That is where local sports bar, Berg Haus in Castle Pines, has…

RCHS senior is living his hockey dream

By CPC | March 1, 2021
Photo of RCHS senior Jacob Saenger has had an exciting hockey season

By Kathy Fallert; photos courtesy of the Saenger family Castle Pines resident since the age of 1 and Rock Canyon High School (RCHS) senior, Jacob Saenger, has had some exciting experiences this year when it comes to his favorite sport – hockey. After multiple years of playing AAA hockey in Colorado, Jacob decided to play…

Kids with big hearts

By CPC | March 1, 2021

By Julie Matuszewski; photos courtesy of Timber Trail Elementary Timber Trail Elementary (TTE) Timberwolves displayed their wolf pack pride by dedicating this year’s American Heart Association (AHA) Kids Heart Challenge to one of their own student heroes, first grader Grace Creeden. At just 5-months-old Grace underwent heart surgery. Wearing oxygen full time for a year…

National Signing Day for 80108 student-athletes

By CPC | March 1, 2021

By Lisa Nicklanovich; courtesy photos In addition to the athletes we honored in our December 2020 paper, we honor the most recent student-athletes to sign letters of intent to play their sport at the collegiate level. DOUGLAS COUNTY HIGH SCHOOL “Cooper is a great young man and a very talented basketball player. As a three-year…

Year of the Ox

By CPC | March 1, 2021
Photo of Student James Hershman reads This is Hong Kong.

Information and photos provided by DCS Montessori DCS Montessori lower elementary students were immersed in cultural studies learning about the Lunar New Year. There are 12 different animals that cycle each year representing different characteristics and personality traits of the Chinese zodiac calendar. This year is the Year of the Ox, which represents agriculture. Those…

The Sock Philanthropist of American Academy

By CPC | March 1, 2021
Photo of American Academy student Corey White collecting socks.

By Steve Whitlock; photos courtesy of the White family Corey White, age 12 and in seventh grade at American Academy (AA), has made a significant difference to the homeless population in Colorado. His parents, Jason and Noelle White, tell how it started. “Corey became passionate about the need for socks in second grade upon hearing…

RCHS Students qualify for National tournament

By CPC | March 1, 2021
Rock Canyon HS Logo

for Speech and Debate By Celeste McNeil; photo courtesy of Megan McDonald Students Allison Willner, Carter McDonald and Frankie Stroud qualified for the National Speech and Debate congress tournament, representing Rock Canyon High School (RCHS). Jacob Aragon and Krish Kumar qualified as alternates. The national tournament will be held in mid-June. The Colorado High School…

Cookies for a cause

By CPC | March 1, 2021
Photo of local heroes at Fire Station 36

By Julie Matuszewski; photos courtesy of Danielle Bonilla Jill Bonilla delivers a few Girl Scout favorites to our local heroes at Fire Station 36. This is just one of many donated cookie deliveries Jill will make this season. Through the Hometown Heroes program, Troop 60047 designated their cookie donations to teachers in the Douglas County…

A day to celebrate

By CPC | March 1, 2021
Much-anticipated Kona Ice celebration at Timber Trail.

By Julie Matuszewski; photo courtesy of Timber Trail Elementary The Timber Trail Elementary move-a-thon fundraiser is one of the biggest money raising events for the school. This year’s event took place in a virtual setting where students were encouraged to log any and all physical activity from hula hooping to bike riding and all hours…

Hitting the mountain trails

By CPC | February 1, 2021
Photo of people snowshoeing

By Shaun Kernahan; courtesy photos Followers of the Farmers’ Almanac have probably made note that February could be a rough month for a daily commute, but on the upside, it looks promising for enjoying the many outdoor winter activities Colorado has to offer. The almanac projects a winter with heavy snow and below-average temperatures. This…

Castle Pines Parkway road reconstruction

By CPC | February 1, 2021

By Chris Michlewicz A multi-phase project to reconstruct Castle Pines Parkway is expected to begin later this year. The City of Castle Pines is planning to reconstruct a busy portion of the arterial roadway from Yorkshire Drive to Monarch Boulevard and is on pace to award the construction contract this spring. The road project will…

Vehicle registration information

By CPC | February 1, 2021

Information and photo provided by Douglas County Are your license plates expiring soon? If you’re not sure, there are three easy ways to find out: 1) check the tabs on your vehicle’s plates; 2) locate the expiration date on your vehicle registration card; and 3) watch for your courtesy renewal card in the mail. While…

2021 property tax notifications –

By CPC | February 1, 2021

Coming soon to a mailbox near you Information provided by Douglas County Since mid-January, property owners in Douglas County have been receiving 2021 property tax bills or tax notifications in the mail. One thing to note when reviewing a tax bill or notification is that while taxes are paid to the County Treasurer’s Office, the…

Commissioners provide local voice beyond Douglas County

By CPC | February 1, 2021

Information provided by Douglas County Douglas County Commissioners represent constituents on more than 30 additional boards and commissions at the local, regional, state and national level. They sit at a larger policy table, ensuring that the interests of Douglas County residents are heard. “Through direct citizen engagement, citizen survey results and more, we are well…

DCL offers resources to small businesses

By CPC | February 1, 2021

Information provided by Douglas County Libraries Budding entrepreneurs have a valuable resource providing a hand up in developing a working business model for an inspirational idea. Douglas County Libraries (DCL) can help with business plans, registration and other startup information. DCL also assist with market research and lists, industry trends and operational services. Online Resources…

Robert and Barb Horst – 80108 Wine & Spirits

By CPC | February 1, 2021
Photo of Robert and Barb Horst owners of 80108 Wine & Spirits

By Kathy Fallert; photos courtesy of the Horst family Robert and Barb Horst are co-owners of 80108 Wine & Spirits in the City of Castle Pines, as well as being siblings. Originally from Stillwater, Minnesota, Barb is the youngest of four kids and Robert is the oldest. The two share five nieces and nephews. The…

Welcome to the cookie Crumbl

By CPC | February 1, 2021

Article and photo by Terri Wiebold As the parent of two college students, my credit card was no stranger to Crumbl Cookies, the Utah-based bakery brand popular for its decadent flavors and late-night delivery. It wasn’t until Devrie Jones opened her store at 323 Metzler Drive in Castle Rock on November 19 that I experienced…

A classic winter pastime: Skating at Evergreen Lake

By CPC | February 1, 2021
Evergreen Lake House stands the Peggy Fleming sculpture

Article and photos by Julie Matuszewski Growing up in North Dakota, it was not uncommon to find an ice rink and warming hut at every park or elementary school. In fact, when the sun was shining and the temperatures were warm enough for outdoor play, gym class meant we were outside enjoying the classic winter…

New and improved: a kitchen renovation

By CPC | February 1, 2021
Photo of before and after kitchen improvement

By Lisa Nicklanovich; photos courtesy of Julie Thelander When Julie and Erik Thelander bought their home in the Winterberry neighborhood five years ago, there was little inventory available. They chose a house with good bones and a great layout, but they knew the house would require upgrades over time. “We chose Castle Pines because we…

Planning ahead for the 2021 camping season

By CPC | February 1, 2021
Camping in Colorado

Article and photos by Chris Michlewicz If you’re into camping and experiencing the full breadth of what Colorado’s natural lands have to offer, now’s the time to reserve those awe-inspiring campsites. In the 1980s and 1990s, camping enthusiasts had to get in line at National Park Service offices and, ironically, camp out overnight to reserve…

Cherokee Ranch & Castle Foundation receives DAR award

By CPC | February 1, 2021

Information and photo provided by Mount Rosa Chapter of the DAR The Mount Rosa Chapter of the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) presented a National Certificate Award for Community Service, American and Colorado flags, and a check from Mount Rosa for $100 to James Holmes, the executive director of the Cherokee Ranch…

Random acts of kindness

By CPC | February 1, 2021

Celebrate Random Acts of Kindness (RAK) Week February 15-21 and RAK Day February 17 by showing appreciation for others, taking action when others are in need and instilling kindness in the community. Resident Judy Manley shared, “Castle Valley is full of random acts of kindness! The surprises were wonderful – my neighbors dropping by items…

Stockholm in winter

By CPC | February 1, 2021
Photo of view north with Skeppsholmen Island.

Article by Joe Gschwendtner; courtesy photos Years ago, I consulted for Swedish battery manufacturer, OPTIMA. Normally, a fair-weather traveler, a meeting at headquarters called me to Stockholm in the winter. What a treat. Since industrial grade winters are the norm, Swedes prepare through their traditions, entertainment venues and infrastructure. Fear of cold and snow does…

Bookworms use influencer-based avenue for exploring new titles

By CPC | February 1, 2021
Bibliophile Corner Books

By Chris Michlewicz; courtesy photo Most in-person book clubs are on hiatus due to the coronavirus, but avid readers are finding a new way to consume and discuss books with some of the most talked-about celebrities of today. Literati, a virtual book club with a star-studded twist, has spent recent months entertaining kids and adults…

Modern etiquette includes many forms

By CPC | February 1, 2021

Dear Reader, Let’s take a minute this month to talk about the origins and different kinds of etiquette. Etiquette goes all the way back to the French courts of the 1600-1700s. Story has it that the head gardener of Versailles was having trouble keeping the courtiers from traveling off the footpaths and wandering all over…

The Cutest Pet gets his prize

By CPC | February 1, 2021

Photo by Meredith Love  

A meaningful kind of success

By CPC | February 1, 2021

By Stacie Chadwick At face value, success in sales is about setting goals, defining a quota and hitting numbers. There’s a mathematical rhythm to the work, and words like “target audience,” “lead generation” and “conversion rate” serve as first language influencers on a path toward achievement. Recently, I met a lovely older gentleman named John…

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