Denver Mountain Parks Staff Notes: Spring 2019

Parks and Project Updates

  • Last November, Denver voters passed Ballot Measure 2A: Parks & Open Space Sales Tax.  The dedicated 0.25% sales tax will support improvement and expansion of Denver’s park system, including Denver Mountain Parks.  Denver Parks and Recreation is currently developing a framework for prioritizing funding within the system, and you can learn more about the process and provide your comments on how funds should be prioritized here: https://www.denvergov.org/content/denvergov/en/denver-parks-and-recreation/planning/master-plans/plans-in-progress.html  
  • Completed rehabilitation of Barracks 1 for HistoriCorps offices.
    • Window restoration
    • Used traditional and in-kind materials for as many finishes as possible, including linseed oil paint, milled tongue-in-groove siding, and rolled roofing.
  • Throughout the coming year we will have regular window restoration volunteer opportunities as we begin planning for our new building rehabilitation project at the Red Rocks CCC camp.  Keep an eye out on www.godenverparks.denvergov.org for volunteer opportunities and to sign up to help.
  • This summer we will have a Red Rocks CCC Camp Open House in Morrison.  The open house will provide an opportunity for the public to explore one of the last intact CCC camps in the nation, attend a Ranger-guided tour, visit the camp museum, meet with members of the Denver Mountain Parks Foundation, and learn why Red Rocks Park and the CCC camp are so special. The date will be announced in late spring.
  • DMP is launching a new teacher fellowship program this year to strengthen the connection to Denver schools and build curriculum-based educational programming around our bison herds and dung beetle ecology. We received excellent applications and are currently in the process of selecting an educator to spend the summer in the Denver Mountain Parks.
  • DMP is developing a new ParkScience program designed to connect school groups to a range of park-based natural sciences throughout hands-on experience.  In partnership with the Denver Zoo and the Bird Conservancy, the program will give students the opportunity to learn about nutrient cycling and the native rainbow scarab dung beetle, participate in bird banding, and learn about stream ecology.
  • In 2018, we completed an adaptive reuse project at Echo Lake to turn a historic building into a new Ranger station.  The building, constructed in 19xx, once served as a winter skate house and concessions stand and has sat vacant for decades.  The project gave the historic building new life a Ranger station and staging point for winter snowshoe programs. The building will be used intermittently in the short term, and the long term objective is to staff the building on a more regular basis during periods of high visitor use.
  • Denver Mountain Parks is recruiting a Park Host volunteer for O’Fallon Park for the 2019 season. Located in Bear Creek Canyon, O’Fallon Park is one of the more popular Denver Mountain Parks and is extremely busy on weekends and holidays throughout the summer months.  The Park Host will hep educate visitors on stewardship, Leave No Trace, bear safety, proper waste disposal, hiking preparedness, and Denver Mountain Parks. Those interested in volunteering or gathering more information should contact Education and Outreach Coordinator Bennett Dear at Bennett.Dear@denvergov.org.
  • Denver Mountain Parks is planning a joint event with the Denver Zoo and Cherokee Ranch and Castle to celebrate National Bison Day on Friday and Saturday, November 1-2, 2019. The event will help to connect the public to Denver Zoo’s conservation work beyond the zoo property and will provide an opportunity to learn about the American Bison at Daniels Park, one of Denver Mountain Park’s most picturesque locations.
  • On March 1st, Denver Mountain Parks auctioned off 38 young bison from the Genesee and Daniels Park herds.  The auction promotes genetic diversity among privately held herds and helps to offset the cost of herd management and winter feeding.  
  • In January, the Buffalo Bill Museum completed installation of a new exhibit on the role of American Indian performers in the Wild West Show. The museum is currently upgrading object storage to better care for the priceless collection and completing other “behind the scenes” work such as structural assessments of the building, reconfiguring the entrance for bicycle safety, and installing fiberoptic cable for better communications.  
  • On February 26, we celebrated Buffalo Bill’s 173rd birthday with cake, ic“PastForward” conferencee cream, and traditional tunes at the historic Pahaska Tepee.  

Denver Mountain Park Volunteer Partner Projects

If you wish to sign up for any of these projects please go to the partner websites listed below.

Wildlands Restoration Volunteers (WRV) sign up at http://www.wlrv.org/

  • May 18th  – WRV Project:  Trading Post Trail Restoration– Red Rocks  8:00-4:00 pm
  • June 1st  – WRV Project: Beaver Brook Trail National Trails Day—Genesee Park 8:00-4:00 pm
  • June 8th — WRV Project: Daniels Park Restoration-Daniels Park — 8:00-4:00 pm
  • Aug. 3rd  and 4th— WRV Project: Alpine Restoration –Summit Lake — 8:00-4:00 pm

Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado (VOC) signup at https://www.voc.org/

  • May 23rd – VOC Project: Weekday Forest Health—Genesee Park 8:00-4:00 pm
  • July 11th — VOC Project: Weekday Forest Health—Genesee Park 8:00-4:00 pm
  • Sept. 28th — VOC Project: Panorama Point Trail – Corwina Park – 8:00-4:00 pm
  • Denver is hosting two high-profile conferences this year in which Denver Parks and Recreation and Denver Mountain Parks will be active participants:

Greater and Greener Conference

“Greater and Greener” is an international urban parks conference that will take place from July 20-24, 2019. Several tours and excursions will introduce participants from around the globe to the legacy and vision of Denver’s mountain park system.   https://www.greatergreener.org/

PastForward conference

Denver will also host the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s “PastForward” conference from October 10-12, 2019.  The closing ceremony will take place at Red Rocks Amphitheatre, one of Denver Mountain Parks’ crown jewels, and will provide preservationists from around the nation an opportunity to visit one of the country’s most intact surviving CCC camps and discuss preservation of a park cultural landscape in an evolving environment.  https://savingplaces.org/conference