For a second year in a row, the annual Lyons Good Old Days celebration has been reduced due to COVID-19 restrictions. The Town of Lyons combined the first of its free summer concerts with the traditional announcements made by the Lyons Historical Society on the evening of Thursdays, July 8.
The first date, July 1, was rained out. On July 8, the Irish band Jesse Burns, Beth Gadbaw and Friends performed to a packed crowd of people, filling Sandstone Park with their lawn chairs, and snacking on popcorn.
The Good Old Days program began with Mayor Nick Angelo welcoming the folks. Then Lyons Historical Society president LaVern Johnson presented the honors program. There are three parts to the program each year:
1. Mr & Mrs Good Old Days
Parks and Recreation Commission Chair Ian Brighton introduced the newest Mr & Mrs Good Old Days nominees. (Crystal White attended, but Dave Cosgrove was out of town.)
“Mr. and Mrs. Good Old Days is an embodiment of what it means to be a Lyons resident in terms of town stewardship, involvement, volunteerism and overall good deeds in our community,” said LaVern.
2. Honoring Lyons High School Graduates from Pioneer Families
The four families who have been in the community for more than 40 years are as follows: Katlyn Enny from the Boone family, Tala Moe from the French/Snyder family, Monte Pickering from the Lee/Steele family, and Luis Vasquez from the Vasquez family. (The Vasquez family were the only ones to attend – see family group photo in About Town 7/15/21 column.)
3. Welcoming Alumni
LaVern looked out on to the crowd, as usual, in order to introduce all old-time alumni, including any who came from out-of-town. This year there were no alumni picnics or reunions.
Alumni Larry Edwards (of the Weese family) and members from his family came to Colorado in hopes of being part of the official dedication ceremony in June, on Good Old Days weekend, for Mickey Hawkins‘ sandstone bench. Hawkins was the only Lyons veteran who died in Vietnam. Larry was in Vietnam 60 miles from where Mickey was. The ceremony has been postponed till Good Old Days June 2022. See About Town 7/1/21 for photos.
Lyons High School Graduates from Pioneer Families (40+ years)
==Statement from LaVern Johnson, president, Lyons Historical Society, followed by biographies gathered by Mrs Johnson==
Since Lyons’ Centennial Year, 1980-1981, the Lyons Historical Society has been honoring the members of the Lyons Senior Class who are descendants of pioneers of the Lyons and St Vrain Valley, For, if it were not for these families who came to this section of Colorado and survived the hardships of depression and other adversities, Lyons would not be the wonderful place it is today.
The Historical Society is challenged to preserve the History of the Lyons area for future generations, not only the older buildings, but the History of the pioneers who lived here before and after the Town was founded. Information is hard to find and we encourage everyone to write down their family history.
This year we have several members of the Senior Class whose families helped settle the area, some have been here over hundred years, others over forty, and it is a pleasure to recognize them and tell you a little of their history:
KATLYN JAZ ENNY
Jaz is the great granddaughter of Dennis and Joy Boone, from Woodbine, Iowa, and a descendent of early day frontiersman, Daniel Boone, who in the 1700’s explored the unknown forests and blazed new trails for westward moving families thru North Caroline, Tennessee, and West Virginia, and established Fort Boonesboro in Kentucky. He knew the ways of the Indians, which kept him alive in these treacherous times. He became famous. When he died at age 86 in Missouri, people came from miles around to say “farewell” to their good friend.
Jaz’ great grand father, Dennis Boone married Joy Umphalbaugh in Iowa in 1929, they moved to Lyons in 1947. Mr.Boone worked for the City of Longmont operating the hydroelectric plant northwest of Lyons for 13 years; and at one time he operated the Texaco Service Station in Lyons. They sponsored a teen center for Lyons Youth. Their children are: Al who married Lois Bradshaw, Bill who married Lola Vantine, and Janice who married Duane Roundy.
Following retirement he and Joy made their home on Reese Street an traveled extensively.
William (Bill) owns part of what used to be the Brodie Quarry which had been quarried since 1884. Bill married Lola Vantine; had three children: Katie, Austin, and Sarah. Katlyn is the daughter of Katie and Dustin Enny. She has two jobs, and Dustin works in water treatment and plowing, The family have always supported the Lyons schools.
Jaz has attended all 4 years at Lyons High School; and plans to attend the University of Wyoming to Major in Criminal Justice Law Enforcement. and eventually become a conservation officer. She has always enjoyed helping others and with this profession she will be giving back. She has deep roots in Lyons being a fourth generation, and will try to complete goals to help her parents.
ATHLETIC HONORS: she received are: Lettered in Girls Basketball (9, 10, 11, 12); Softball (9, 10, 11, 12); All Conference Softball (12); and Academic Letters . and a F. LaVerne Johnson Scholarship. She has given her spectators much excitement in playing Softball Basketball, and Track and Field. We have been proud of her. We wish her luck in all of her endeavors and her and family as Lyons Pioneers.
Tala is a member of the French family who homesteaded in Calhan, Co. and moved to the Hygiene area in a covered wagon in 1890’s, and then to Lyons in 1949. Their children were: Grace, Lila, Margaret, Frank, George, Lewis, and Charles. She is the great granddaughter of George and Grace French of Lyons, who farmed; and worked in the quarries; for the St. Vrain School District; and volunteered for the Lyons Fire Department. Her great grandmother, Grace Snyder was from a pioneer family in Berthoud. Tala is the granddaughter of George and Suzy French, and the daughter of Cindy French and George Moe. She was raised in Longmont, but attended the Lyons Schools.
Tala has attended all four year at Lyons High School. She plans to attend Northeastern Junior College to major in Art. She has participated in Band, Choir, Bookclub, Chess and Gaming clubs, and received four Academic Letters; a Fine Arts Letter in Band (12); and Scholarships from Vision, Hilltop Guild, and F.LaVerne Johnson Memorial Scholarship. She wants to gain more knowledge and have the chance to chose what and who she wants to be. She has good work ethics in band and academics, and has a high GPA, so she can go to college and have her dreams come true. She is enrolled in Northeastern Junior College of Sterling, as an Art Major. Her goal is to study art and make a difference and have her art make people happy. We wish her Luck, and declare she and her family as Lyons Pioneers..
Monte Pickering is the son of Eric and Leissa Pickering; She is a descendant of Mary McCarmick, born in the Erie/Rinn area in 1871, who eloped with C.E. Brown who came from Texas on a threshing crew. Their son was Clinton J. Brown, born in 1897. The family was well known in the St..Vrain Valley as they operated a feed mill and delivered coal.
Clinton delivered root beer in Lyons on the way to Estes Park in a Stanley Steamer, helped build the telephone line along the Peak-to-Peak Highway, and told of a large fish he caught east of Lyons at the Iron Bridge, which was packed in ice at George’s Candy Kitchen in Longmont and displayed. His wife came from Wisconsin.
Their daughter, Aldean, born in 1929, married Glen Peppler, in 1947, son of Alex and Marie, the parents to Lisa. Lori, and and Bill Steel.
Monte is the the son of Lisa and Eric Pickering. He plans to attend Aims Community College in Greeley, Co., as a Business Major. He received many Athletic honors: Letters in Baseball (11); Football (9, 10, 11, 12), Wrestling (9, 10, 11, 12); All State Football (12), All-Conference Football (11,12), and the Lyons Lions Club Outstanding Sr. football Athlete.
We congratulate Monte and declare him and his family as Lyons Pioneers.
LUIS VASQUEZ is the great grandson of Isabel, who came to Longmont in 1954 to visit her sister. She met and soon married the young man next door, Manuel Vasquez. His father, Santos, had moved to Greeley in 1951, from Brownsville, Texas. Manuel came to Colorado in 1951 and worked with his father. The following year he had an opportunity to work at the the quarries in Lyons. He worked at the Jacob & Evans Stone Company, which was located on what is now Sandstone Park. They quarried at Beech Hill, and stayed in a little cabin at the Ohline Quarries. They wintered in Texas and returned the next summer to the Lyons quarries. They were paid by the tonnage, so the harder they worked, the more money they made.
Isabel used to give Mexican cooking classes and is retired from Andrea’s Café where she cooked for 17 years. She lived in the old motel east of Lyons, which was swept away by the September, 2013 Flood. She lived in Longmont; and now lives in one of the Phillips houses along Highway 66, that her son Raul has purchased.
Isabel and Manuel had ten children; Jesus, Raul, Steve, Abraham, Anita, Lisa, Linda and Gasper who died of cancer in 1997 at the age of 35, and Ramon, who passed away in 2019. All the Vasquez children attended Lyons Schools.
In 1978 Manuel and his son Raul started selling sandstone to other stone yards. In 1985 Raul approached his father to start a business together as partners known as Blue Mountain Stone Inc. It is now one of the largest quarries in the area. Raul bought the Ohline quarry in the 1998. Manuel retired from the business in 1999.
Luis is the grandson of Raul; his father is Manuel (Manny) who works for the company and was a Town Trustee from 2004-2008; and his mother is Dolores, who is Lyons Town Clerk. He has a sister Olivia and a little brother-Luke.
Manny graduated from Lyons in 1997 and went to Las Vegas, New Mexico to College, where he met a cute girl named Dolores and brought her home. Soon her Mom Mary Ann joined them.
Luis has been a good student and has Athletic Honors in Baseball (9th, 10th grade); Football (10th, 11th ,12th grade) he played Center, and Track (11th & 12th.) He received the Lyons Heart Award as well as a certificate and pin for enlisting in the military. Luis also worked for the Town of Lyons in the Parks and Rec department for a year, and learned a great deal.
Luis graduated from Lyons High School today, and he is off to the Navy. He has had this calling since he was little. He has been preparing for the Navy in the gym lifting weights and hopes to travel around the world. He is one of four Lyons graduates joining the service.
We wish you a lot of luck Luis in your travels thru the years to come and declare you as a Pioneer of the Lyons area.
Mr & Mrs Good Old Days 2021
“We, the Lyons Historical Society, have a committee and usually we ask for nominations,” said president LaVern Johnson, “but this year, since Dave celebrated his 20th year as Parks and Recreation Director, and the Parks Commission recognized him, as well as the Board of Trustees, we thought it was a good time to recognize him. I have been on the Parks committee, and now am an honorary member, since 1948 to 2021. Also, Crystal White for her eight years of work and volunteering. The honor was started in 1980, when Lyons was 100 years old. Last year it was Robert Jones of Lyons Communication/Cable and Dorothy Pelbachoud, Steamboat Mountain Health Food store; however, we didn’t do the ceremony due to COVID. We did announce it in the newspaper. Perhaps we can honor them on stage in 2022. Through the years, it started out as being older couples who have contributed to the town, then we did businesses, alumni, classes, quarry owners, etc. that have been honored. We have a list at the museum.”
“Mrs Good Old Days” CRYSTAL WHITE (based on an interview with her by Town staff, and read at the ceremony)
Crystal moved to Lyons in Sept 2009 to take care of Mrs. Bernie McCain. She did that for eight years, up until Bernie passed away in late December 2017
Crystal began working for the Town of Lyons in May 2013 (before the flood) maintaining Main Street flowers and weed elimination, and between 3rd and 5th, and the assisting at the Library Depot Building, and the parks.
Now, queue September 2013 and the FLOOD. Crystal became one of the leaders of the non-profit Lyons Volunteers, which was a tremendous amount of work, but was rewarding to get to meet so many helpful people and get involved. Getting to know the community was good, and it felt good too! While Crystal thought she knew everyone before the flood and her volunteer work with Lyons Volunteers, she reflected, wow…there were so many great people that she didn’t know who were involved and that Crystal met.
In 2017, Crystal began to work more in the parks for the Town, as the “eyes and ears” and as the front gate attendant, especially on weekends, in what is now LaVern M Johnson Park. She loves doing that and meeting new people who get to experience LYONS, which we all get to call HOME. Each year she adds more duties and hours to her employee schedule, helping at the Visitors Center, with irrigation needs, and ensuring we have toilet paper and more in our public facilities.
One of her favorite moments is introducing Mrs. Lavern Johnson to the new park hosts at LaVern Johnson Park.
Join us in congratulating Crystal White as the 2021 Mrs Good Old Days, for her work in public service for the Town of Lyons, and for her long standing dedication of volunteer service with Lyons Volunteers and the Lyons Emergency Assistance Fund.
“Mr. Good Old Days” DAVE COSGROVE, Lyons Parks and Public Works Director
Celebrating 20 Years of Service with the Town of Lyons
(biography as provided by Town staff)
Dave Cosgrove, the Parks and Public Works Director joined the Lyons Team in April 2001. Originally Dave had moved from Iowa to Boulder with the dream of working in sports management and administration at the college level or professional level.
But that all changed when he applied for the job in Lyons and took a field walk in town and in the parks and saw all the natural potential. The southern expanse of Bohn Park was privately owned and music festivals at Planet Bluegrass were in their early years.
Cosgrove worked on many projects including a land swap with the St Vrain Valley School District to create the current multi-purpose field and restrooms near the high school. Other projects with significant impact which Cosgrove was involved in included the Dog Park, the Dirt Jump Bike Park and Raul Vasquez Stage in Sandstone Park. He worked with the 2000 Parks and Open Space plan and worked with the Parks and Recreation Commission to revise and update it with the 2008 Parks and Open Space Plan. Cosgrove wrote the grant for the Olson Property acquisition as part of the Boulder County and Picture Rock trailhead and connection.
In addition, Cosgrove was instrumental in working to formalize paid parking in the parks for revenue generation and operations and maintenance. At the time Meadow Park (now LaVern M Johnson Park) only had tent camping and Cosgrove helped to expand the RV camping area too.
So much progress was being made. In 2013, with a dozen years of tenure with the Town, it may have felt like smooth sailing ahead. But we had the natural disaster created in Lyons from the 2013 flood.
Rather than giving in or giving up, Cosgrove saw the event as an opportunity. Like many staff, he learned quickly about natural disaster planning, resiliency, the Federal grant recovery process and so much more. While there were times that were surely nerve wracking, challenging and just a bit frustrating, Cosgrove noted that flood recovery and the work that goes with it has been truly rewarding overall. It required a great deal of public meetings, listening to feedback and input, sharing information regarding the 30%, 60% and 90% design plans for so many public areas that were destroyed or severely impacted.
Cosgrove had always been able to see a larger picture view, in this small, optimistic town which he notes has great people and residents who really care. Yes, there have been hiccups and hurdles along the way, but headed into his 21st year working with the Town, Dave Cosgrove is optimistic about what is ahead.
Some of the upcoming projects that are on his radar include the grant funded 4th Avenue Pedestrian Bridge over the North St Vrain Creek as part of the Safe Routes to School project between the Lyons Elementary School and the Middle/High School, which is in the design phase currently. In addition, the Town was recently awarded Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO) Funding for park improvements to Black Bear Hole, and the 2nd Avenue Trailhead Access. As part of the 2016 Master Parks Planning Process, there could be lights for baseball on the Bohn Baseball Field, an expanded dirt jump bike park and replacement of the slack line that had been in Bohn Park.
As the Town begins to assess what spring and summer 2021 will look like in Lyons, with a post COVID lens, we wanted to recognize Dave Cosgrove for 20 years of commitment working to make Lyons a better place to live, explore and recreate. If you happen to see him out and about, give him your best!