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Tribune Staff

Some people less serious about elections
With his ears as large as they are, voters must think Mickey Mouse would make a good listener.
Mickey picked up a ballot for Powell's town council in last Tuesday's primary election.
On county ballots, Bullwinkle Moose, Goofy, Pluto, Donald & Daffy Duck, Fred Flinstone and Mickey & Minnie Mouse received write-in votes for a host of offices.
“Pretty good company, isn't it?” quipped House District 25 Republican candidate Dave Bonner.
Powell Republican Pat Slater launched a serious write-in campaign against Bonner, publisher of the Powell Tribune, but both candidates saw more frivolous opposition from “Cowpie,” “Pogo,” and “Slack.”
What those results mean is anyone's guess.
By law, an option must be provided for voters to “write-in” the candidate of their choice, giving everyone ballot access of sorts. However, according to state statute, what's written-in does not have to be actually read unless there are enough votes to win the election. So, as long as self-penned votes are less than number of votes received by winning candidates, write-in ballot are never even seen.
As an experiment, Park County clerk Kelly Jensen decided to record all write-in votes this year. She was a little sad to see the results.
“It's disappointing to see what (some) people do with their opportunity to vote and bring in a candidate,” Jensen said. “I don't think people realize how much work has to go into (counting write-ins).”
“The winds are just howling,” Clint Dawson said Wednesday, describing the wind's rate around the Gunbarrel Fire.
Dawson is the zone fire manager for Shoshone National Forest.
In the valley — in the vicinity of the newly-relocated Gunbarrel Fire camp at Buffalo Bill State Park — the wind was gusting to 40-60 mph in the early afternoon on Wednesday. The new incident command camp is just above the reservoir west of Cody.
An aircraft flying over the fire Wednesday reported winds reaching 115 mph at 11,000 feet, Dawson said.
The fire was was spotting on the east side of 12,000-foot high Trout Peak, according to an incident report.
Wind often is the rule rather than the exception in the hills and mountains above the reservoir, but Dawson described these fierce winds as “abnormal.”
A red-flag warning was issued for the fire area again on Wednesday. That means low humidity and windy conditions likely will translate to potential fire growth and extreme fire behavior, said Mark Giacoletto, Shoshone Forest fire management officer.
As of Wednesday morning, the Gunbarrel Fire was roughly 10-12 miles west of Cody and north of U.S. 14-16-20. It had grown by 3,424 acres since Monday to a total of 57,384 acres and extended about 24 miles roughly from east to west. Lightning ignited the fire about 38 miles west of Cody on July 26.
August 27, 2008 12:45 pm

Connie F. Mason

Jan. 4, 1953 - Aug. 17, 2008
Funeral services will be today (Thursday) at 2 p.m. at Trinity Lutheran Church in Cody for Connie F. Mason, 55, who died of cancer Sunday, Aug. 17 at her Cody home.
She was born Jan. 4, 1953, in Powell, daughter of Kenneth D. and Ilene F. (Gillette) Kobbe. Connie attended schools in Powell and graduated from Powell High School in 1972. She married Rodney Mason in Cody on April 7, 1973.
Connie enjoyed being a homemaker, especially her gardening and cooking. She enjoyed the times shared fishing and camping with friends and family. She was a member of the Eagles Auxiliary and an active member of Trinity Lutheran Church.
Survivors include her husband Rodney in Cody; her mother, Ilene Kobbe of Powell; her sister, Cindy Peterson of Powell; nephews Randy, Brian (Pam)and Kenny (Terry) Peterson, Richard (Micki), David (Jennifer) and Dennis Mason, Allen (Kathy) Jones, Bill (Valerie) and Scott Witkowski; nieces Wendy McClure and Debbie (Keith) Viles; mother-in-law, Edith Mason; sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Deanna and Elmo Jones; brother-in-law, Al Witkowski; and sister-in-law, Jackque Biesemeier.
She was preceded in death by her father, Kenneth Kobbe.
Visitation will be Thursday at 9 a.m. till noon at Ballard Funeral Home, Cody. Burial will be in Riverside Cemetery.
The family would appreciate memorials to Spirit Mountain Hospice, 707 Sheridan Ave., Cody, WY 82414.
August 27, 2008 12:41 pm

Unruly fire

Let ‘er burn abandoned; suppression now underway
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Rocky Mountain Fire Use Management Team Incident Commander Bill Hahnenberg outlines Gunbarrel fire's progress Friday at a public meeting.
Tribune photo by Gib Mathers
Due to the Gunbarrel fire's growth and its threat to homes in the Jim Mountain area, the “fire use fire” plan to allow it to burn has been nixed — suppression efforts were underway Monday.
“The overall objective is confine and contain any future (fire) growth,” said Information Officer Randy Moench of the Rocky Mountain Fire Use Management Team Monday.
Monday, the fire was nearly 54,000 acres. There are 164 miles of uncontrolled perimeter and 25 miles of completed fire line along the southern line. The fire is approximately 24 miles long, Moench said.
“In recognizing of the growing focus on protecting private land, the incident objective of allowing fire to play its natural role in the ecosystem has been dropped,” said Moench's Monday morning e-mailed update.
Park County Kart Club's next races Aug. 30
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Nicole Timmons was one of 14 different drivers to claim a first-place finish during last Saturday's go-kart races at the Park County Fairgrounds. Tribune file photo by David Dickey
Fourteen different drivers picked up victories during last Saturday's go-kart racing at the Park County Fairgrounds. Of those, only one scored multiple wins on the newly configured track, which produced plenty of high-speed action.
Leading the charge was Matt Sweet, who was the first driver to the checkered flag in three separate events. His victories came in the Junior I, Junior I boys and Junior pro-am divisions.
Go-kart racing will continue Saturday, Aug. 30, at the Park County Fairgrounds. Racing action is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. In September, the Park County Kart Club will conduct its final racing dates of the season. Those are slated for Sept. 13 and 27.
The following is a complete list of results from Saturday's Park County Kart Club's racing action:
August 25, 2008 1:57 pm

What does $6 million buy?

The cost for management of the Gunbarrel Fire is about $6.6 million so far.
Since the fire started July 26, 54,000 acres have been charred, and the fire doesn't show much sign of slowing.
In fact, the fire has grown significantly in the last few days.
And as it continues to burn, encroaching on private land, the goal of allowing the fire to play its role in the ecosystem has been changed in favor of suppression on the east end.
With the change, costs promise to rise even faster, and it begs the question: What has $6.6 million done so far?
The answer comes in many forms.
A pup-tent city, 200+ people strong, has grown near the Wapiti Ranger Station.
It's filled with the people who spend their days cutting timber, lighting back-fires, clearing fire lines and running hoses and sprinklers — up the sides of mountains, in 90-degree heat, no less.
The same crews patrol the North Fork, around the clock, to make sure cabins and other structures are protected.
Hotshot crews battle on the front lines.
Fifteen engines and three water tenders are in service.
Candidates unsure if they'll continue efforts
Don't start counting any electoral chickens just yet.
Write-in results from Park County's primary election reveal that some races that appeared a foregone conclusion may not be over.
Two individuals ran write-in campaigns for the primary election, and they're considering continuing their efforts to the general election.
Republican Pat Slater, the former director of the Powell Recreation District, launched a last-minute campaign for House District 25. Powell Tribune publisher Dave Bonner was the only candidate on the ballot.
Bill Yetter of Meeteetse also made a write-in bid for a seat on the Park County commission.
Slater decided just days before the election to make a bid for the Powell area's seat in the state house.
“A one-person race isn't a choice, it's a lack of options,” he said.
August 25, 2008 12:57 pm

Golf team off to better start

Finish 10th in Riverton
The Powell High School boy's golf team is already off to a stronger start than last year.
At last week's season-opening Riverton Invitational, the Panthers shaved 89 shots from their score at the same tournament a year ago.
PHS head coach Troy Hildebrand said his team was “right in the mix among 3A teams” at the Thursday-Friday event.
The Panthers took 10th in the 13-team field with an 822 mark.
Their total score was only was only about three dozen shots away from fifth. They also cut 34 shots from day one to day two, going from 428 to 394.
“The first day (Thursday) our scores were slightly higher than we had hoped, but still a very solid start,” Hildebrand said. “I felt like the guys settled down nicely on Friday and shot the type of scores we were hoping for on a tough course.”
The hosting Riverton Wolverines won their own tourney with a two-day total of 637. The Evanston Red Devils took second with a 646 score.
Individually, junior Bryan Borcher shot an 88 the first day and followed it up with an 84. Hildebrand called it a “very nice start” to his season.
“This was Bryan's third year at the Riverton tournament, and he has shown great improvement each time,” the coach said.
Powell's two new schools were dedicated Thursday with brief ceremonies and open houses.
Principal Ginger Sleep opened the celebration at Southside Elementary. She introduced school board chairman David Northrup, who spoke briefly, thanking all the individuals and companies who had contributed to the design and development of the building. Northrup read a letter a letter from U.S. Sen. John Barrasso congratulating the Park County School District No. 1 for completing the new building.
Fifth-grader Trey Ouellette, president of the Southside student council, echoed Northrup's thanks to those who contributed to the school's construction and then invited those in attendance to tour the school.
“I'm going to use my presidential powers to call in Mrs. Sleep to organize things,” Ouellette said, before joining other student council members to lead the tours.
At Powell High School, Northrup opened the ceremonies with thanks, then introduced Barrasso, who spoke about the importance of education and praised the Wyoming Legislature for creating the Hathaway Scholarships for Wyoming students.
“You have great opportunities here,” Barrasso told the students in attendance.
PHS student body officers Gavin Mills and McKenzie Danforth spoke about memories of the old building and opportunities for new memories in the new one.
Billie Kasinger, a member of the PHS class of 1961, the first one to graduate from the old school, spoke briefly, telling the students to “remember, the best years of your life are now.”
“Be the best that you can be,” Kasinger said.
Members of the district school board then stepped forward to cut the ribbon on the new school, and everyone stepped inside to inspect the new facility.
Squad registers 3-4 mark in CSI's Outback Invitational
Seven matches in two days — that was the task facing the Northwest College Lady Trappers last Friday and Saturday at the College of Southern Idaho's Outback Invitational in Twin Falls. Making that challenge even more difficult for NWC was the fact that four of its opponents boasted lofty national rankings entering the event.
Despite those obstacles and a 13-player roster filled with nine freshmen, first-year Lady Trapper head coach Flavia Siqueira directed her squad to a 3-4 mark during NWC's first action of the season.
“I was pleased with this tournament,” Siqueira said. “I still believe we lack experience, but we were in good shape and performed well against teams that are ranked. For sure it was wake-up call for some of my kids who now understand a little bit more about the level and the speed of collegiate volleyball.”
NWC opened the tournament with four games on Friday, including a 9 a.m. contest against sixth-ranked Salt Lake Community College. The Lady Trappers lost that match 25-23, 25-12.
“It was a good match, and we were ahead for a while,” Siqueira said. “But they came back with a very strong block and took the match away from us.”