Pine Bluffs Post - Serving all of Eastern Laramie County since 1908

2017 in Review Part 1


December 28, 2017

Jimmie Earls/Pine Bluffs Post

The former home to the Pine Bluffs High Plains Archaeology Field Lab and Museum will be let for bid by the Pine Bluffs Town Council and be sold as-is with a minimum bid of $80,000.

Council looks at options for town buildings

Several properties owned by the Town of Pine Bluffs are scheduled to be either torn down, repaired or put up for bid for sale. Bids were recently opened by the Pine Bluffs Town Council and the lowest bid for demolition work was submitted by Pine Bluffs Gravel and Excavating.

A list of buildings being looked at by the council includes the old Texaco station, the old electric shop, cemetery building #2, the east shop and the Connors building/museum.

Wyoming tough Travelers

The snowstorm that hit southeastern Wyoming this Tuesday, Jan. 24 did not affect the traffic on Interstate 80. According to Charlene Smith of the Visit Cheyenne tourist information center, located in the rest area south of Pine Bluffs, the number of visitors entering the center is typical for this time of year, the snow notwithstanding. She used the term, "Wyoming tough," to illustrate how this storm did not affect daily life with no school closures and the traffic on the interstate differing little, if at all from a sunny January day.

"Hornets Huddle" uses imagination for fundraising

Given budget constraints facing the Pine Bluffs Elementary School, teachers and students have become creative when they look to fund special activities. Such is the case for Pine Bluffs Elementary fourth through sixth grade science and health teacher Todd Thompson and the members of the school's student council, the "Hornet Huddle."

"We are always trying to find fundraisers because here we don't have a budget to do anything and so we have to raise money to do different activities with the school.," Thompson said.

LCSD2 to continue on four-day school week

Following the approval of the previous meetings minutes, warrants and the financial report, the board approved the school calender recommendation. This allows that next years district school calender will continue with the four day school week on a two-year rotation, meaning the district will not have to return to the state legislature for two years to obtain approval of the schedule.

Heritage Society on right track

built in Wyoming, the Union Pacific Railroad depot of Pine Bluffs was constructed in 1907, relocated in 1918 and demolished in November 1980.

The depots on the railroad line where constructed ten miles apart, allowing the old steam engines to take on water. The station west of Pine Bluffs being in Egbert. Over time, with the introduction of diesel engines these stations became obsolete and the railroad started to demolish them. In 1980, this fate befell the depot in Pine Bluffs.

Pine Bluffs resident and farmer, Jack Hockersmith, who along with his wife Jeannie, credits Mrs. Leonard (Alice) Fornstrom as one of the driving forces in Pine Bluffs behind the preservation of the towns history and the destruction of the depot as the genesis of that effort.

"What all started it out was we had the depot and the railroad gave two weeks for somebody to do something with it. There was no organization in town with a historic aspect in mind. So that two weeks went right by and they just dug a big hole and dozed her in," Hockersmith said.

Town takes steps to replace storm damaged trees

Of the 37 trees in the park, 35 are set for removal. The city crews started removing damaged trees March 16, 2017.

I-80 work in Pine Bluffs to affect traffic pattern

Now that most of the winter weather is behind us (knock on wood), the Wyoming Department of Transportation is gearing up for major road construction projects.One of those projects will affect traffic in Pine Bluffs until fall.

Work will begin soon on a project to reconstruct three bridges on eastbound Interstate 80 in Pine Bluffs.

As a result, drivers should expect and prepare for significant detours and route changes in the project area. Changes are scheduled to be implemented over the next few weeks.

All I-80 traffic through Pine Bluffs in both directions will be routed to the westbound lanes, creating a two-lane traffic pattern.

Both westbound and eastbound traffic will be able to exit, but not enter, I-80 at the Parsons Street interchange (Exit 401).

Hanson retires at the top

After 24 years Deidre Hanson is retiring form her duties as a school nurse at Pine Bluffs and Albin and with the honor of being named Wyoming's Greatest School Nurse.

In a contest put on by the Pfizer Corporation, Hanson was chosen to represent Wyoming in an effort to name America's Greatest School Nurse. The goal of the contest is to recognize school nurses who go above and beyond and honors those who often don't get the credit they deserve day in and day out, according to Amy Procaccini of the public relations firm hosting the contest.

Pine Bluffs Elementary Principal Andrea Verosky received an email about the contest and suggested that a couple of staff members work on the nomination form.

Curtis elected Pine Bluffs Mayor

lots have been counted and current Pine Bluffs council member Alan Curtis will be the next mayor of Pine Bluffs. Curtis defeated Don Herman 224-97 for the spot vacated by outgoing mayor William Shain. Wacey Shelit received four write-in votes, Donn Randall and Dennis Talich each received two write-in votes and one write-in vote was cast for incumbent and outgoing mayor William Shain. A total of 340 ballots were cast in-town, six of which were absentees.

Wydot installs new signage

Travelers entering Wyoming will soon be greeted by new Welcome to Wyoming signs, featuring a scenic view of the Lower Green River Lake and Squaretop Mountain.

The Wyoming Department of Transportation's Sign Shop recently constructed the highly visible reflective signs and department crews are now installing them. WYDOT will have the signs up by June 1.

Crews will be installing 32 eight-by-four foot and five 16-by-eight foot reflective signs at several locations in Wyoming, said Mike Calaway, WYDOT Sign Shop supervisor.

"The larger signs will be going on interstates 80, 25 and 90, while the smaller ones will go on the secondary roads," Calaway said. "The signs will be at locations where motorists enter the state."

WYDOT changes the design of signs every eight years to match the new state license plate, which is also changed every eight years.

"Our new Welcome to Wyoming signs mirror the image of our license plates, which reflect the natural beauty of the state of Wyoming," said Gregg Fredrick, WYDOT chief engineer. "This unique sign will welcome visitors to our state as they travel to Wyoming's picturesque and scenic destination areas."

WYDOT and the Wyoming Office of Tourism collaborated on the signs. WYDOT's Public Affairs Office designed them to look like the state's license plates.

With the signs displaying a scenic Wyoming location, visitors sometimes stop where there's a pullout to get a photo of themselves with the signs.

"We're proud of the state of Wyoming so, we also decided years ago to start adding some artwork to the welcome signs," said Joel Meena, Traffic program manager. "Not only are these signs beneficial for Wyoming's tourism, but more importantly, they let travelers know when they're entering the state of Wyoming."

More next week.


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