LCF Announces Highway Cleanup Day

The annual Lyons Community Foundation (LCF) Highway Cleanup Day is set for Saturday, June 7, from 9 till 11 a.m., or noon-ish (The more people who show up, the less time it takes!) LCF is responsible for the first two miles of Rt. 36 from the light at

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Lyons Community Foundation Awards Six Scholarships

By Monique Sawyer-Lang
What do Wildlife Biology, Health and Exercise Science, Materials and Metallurgical Engineering, Elementary Education, and Marketing have in common? Those are the

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Lyons Adopt-A-Tree Project - The Power of Volunteerism

By Sally Van Meter
Here in the town of Lyons, many of you have noticed the new tree plantings here in town along Main Street, Lyons Firehouse, and near the Lyons Post Office. Sponsored by the Lyons Lions Club, in partnership with the Lyons Ecology Board,

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Boulder Chamber To Recognize Lyons Women

The Boulder Chamber and the Business Women’s Leadership Group (BWLG) annually honor women who have made significant contributions through innovations and a committed effort to address a meaningful business or community need, locally, regionally, nationally, or globally. This year at their 19th annual Women Who Light The Community dinner on

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She's The Best

Dear Editor,
Imagine losing your wife at a young age. Then imagine her body being burned in a fire at a mortuary before the final arrangements were made. That’s what happened to my friend when the Howe Mortuary went up in flames. His suffering, grief and anger were beyond words. He arrived at the scene of the fire wanting answers. What had happened to his wife?

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Financial Planning Help, Free of Charge

By Meg Waters
If you’re having difficulty paying your bills, whether because of the flood or not, there’s a county program designed to help you map out the best path forward. The housing and financial counseling program from Boulder County Housing and Human Services enables residents to meet with a financial counselor for free.

Prior to September 2013, the program primarily focused on foreclosure prevention, and on helping people who were considering a home purchase figure out the finances around that decision. “We also work with people on just straight-up budgets, getting their budget to a balanced state,” says Becky Thelen, a housing and financial counselor with the program. “And we help people clarify their financial goals and tailor their budget to achieve those goals. We work on credit improvement for individuals, reverse mortgage counseling, and for people who are refinancing their mortgage, we talk through their new loan, make sure the terms make sense, that sort of thing.”

Since the flood, the scope of the program has expanded. “What we’re finding is a lot of people feel stuck in a holding pattern,” Thelen says. “They’re not able to move forward on repairs or rebuilding or purchasing a new property because there are so many moving targets. Will they get the buyout? Can they get the permits to rebuild? Will they need to elevate? How can they finance repairs and their existing mortgage at the same time? What’s going to happen with spring runoff?
“We help people sort through the many options they have and all the variables that go into each one,” Thelen continues. “Then we help them create a plan for moving forward. If someone wants to repair their property, we determine whether that’s financially feasible, how much they can afford for repairs, what their options are for financing it, and whether financial assistance is available. There are a lot of common themes, but everybody has very distinctive, individualized variables, so we help them create their own personal follow-up plans.”

Whether or not a homeowner is rebuilding, Thelen and her colleagues can help determine what types of payment relief might be available through the mortgage company. “We’ve found that lenders seem to be pretty willing to work with homeowners, but since everybody’s in a different financial circumstance with different goals and different mortgages, the way the lender works with them is different for everyone,” Thelen says. “We can help provide realistic expectations about what mortgage companies can do with homeowners, and what the likelihood of getting different options looks like.” The organization can also act as a communication conduit between the homeowner and the mortgage company.

Thelen has found that even when a homeowner is successful in working with his or her mortgage company shortly after a crisis, that relationship may break down over time. “I think that as more time passes since the flood occurred, mortgage companies will become less likely to extend mortgage payment forbearances or deferments,” she says. “We’ll need to be working on more permanent solutions for people.”

In addition to flood-related financial counseling, Thelen and her colleagues continue to offer the same services they provided before September. “Anyone who is having difficulty paying their mortgage and all of their expenses should contact a housing and financial counselor, whether or not that’s flood-related,” Thelen says. “The services are always free.”
The program is funded by grants from federal and local government agencies, as well as the IRS’s National Mortgage Settlement. “Anytime anyone offers this type of service for a fee, that’s a red flag,” Thelen says.

Although Thelen occasionally provides financial counseling over the phone, she says most people prefer to meet face to face at her office in Boulder. To make an appointment, call (720) 564-2279, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Lyons 9Health Fair Says Thanks And Changes Leadership

After six successful years overseeing the production of the Lyons 9Health Fair, Jonelle Tucker is stepping down. “It has been an honor to work with such a fantastic group of people and provide such an important and beneficial service to our community, ” says Tucker. “In addition to just trying to pull back from some of my volunteer activities, I’ve been working with “It has been an honor to work with such a fantastic group of people and provide such an important and beneficial

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Governor Coming Back To Lyons

Governor John Hickenlooper will visit Lyons on Saturday, May 17, to officially sign into law, a bill that recently passed the Colorado Legislature, which will provide financial relief from property taxes for homes that were destroyed by natural causes and are no longer inhabitable.

Lyons Mayor John O’Brien will introduce the Governor and other honored guests. The bill signing ceremony will take place in the Confluence Neighborhood at the corner of Evans and Fourth Avenue (near where the former pedestrian bridge crossed the river), at approximately 1 p.m.

The Fabric of Community and Accepting Help

By Janaki Jane, Colorado Spirit

The Lyons & Environs Colorado Spirit Team listens to stories of area residents’ experiences of the flood on a daily basis. Recently, these stories have brought to mind another story: one about a Thanksgiving tradition some families have. They give thanks for all of the people that brought them their Thanksgiving feast. It takes a while. For instance, to give thanks for the turkey, they thank both the farmer who raised it and the farmers who raised the feed. They thank all those who

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