Best Use of Lights – Cub Pack Scout 20
Providing a Lifetime of Service to Community
Selecting a grand marshal each year is the privilege of the beneficiary organization for the Lighter Side of Christmas Parade. Ute Pass Kiwanis, the 2015 beneficiary, had the pleasure of naming local businessman Bert West for the honor this year.
Growing up in a farming community smaller than Divide, Bert learned about service to community at an early age. “Both my father and grandfather were Kiwanians,” he stated. “My grandfather always said ‘Be ashamed to lay your head on the pillow without first having done some good for your fellow man.’ He started taking me to Kiwanis Pancake Breakfasts when I was around 3.”
Taking his grandfather’s call to service to heart, Bert joined Kiwanis 27 years ago and has had perfect attendance at weekly meetings since then. “Some guys have had perfect attendance for over 50 years,” he said. “They are my inspiration.”
Bert quickly moved up the ranks in Kiwanis, becoming charter president for a new club, then moving on to Lt. Governor for the state of California. At the time, he was the youngest person to hold the office of Lt. Governor in CA and he did this in only his third year in Kiwanis!
Moving to Divide in 1995, Bert joined in the Ute Pass Kiwanis Club where he has been busy for 20 years. “I just enjoyed being a member of the club,” he said. “I started feeling like I needed to do more and become the Governor of the Rocky Mountain District I 2010.” Bert stated he enjoyed his time as Governor as he was able to travel to clubs in the Colorado, Nebraska Panhandle and Wyoming areas and interact with other Kiwanians there. “Now I’m running for the office of International Trustee,” he added. “That will definitely be the highlight of my Kiwanis career!”
The local Ute Pass Kiwanis club has 68 members and works closely with the local school groups that include K Kids in Elementary Schools, Builder Clubs in the Middle Schools, and Key Club in the High Schools in Teller County. “We have over 120 kids active in the program,” he stated. “They get to learn through service that there is something outside their immediate world that they can have an impact with. They get to help with supplying kids in other countries with school supplies following a disaster to leaning how they can make an impact on their own community and school.” The local Ute Pass Kiwanis Club also provides pediatric equipment to the local ambulance district. “We fund this with the Rocky Mountain District Foundation,” he said. “They supply the ambulance service with funds to buy the pediatric supplies they need to be ready for an emergency.”
His wife, Sandy, has been supportive of his Kiwanian activities through all this time. “We got married on June 21 30 years ago,” he said. “It’s the longest day of the year!” Together they raised two daughters Megan and Lauren, who both graduated from WPHS. “Ace the Wonder Dog, my Black Lab hunting machine, and Sandy’s dog Lovie round out our family at home right now,” he added. Working as a roofer, he “got tired of falling off roofs” and moved to wholesale sales in 2006. “This has given me the opportunity to do more with Kiwanis,” he said.
The Ute Pass Kiwanis major activities each year include Breakfast with Santa the first Saturday in December each year and raising scholarship funds for local students. “We hand out $4000-5000 each year,” he said. “We couldn’t have the great clubs locally in the schools without the combined efforts of the faculty advisors and club member participants. We are also in the process of adopting a local park on Lovell Gulch Road,” he added. “It will include a baseball field, soccer field, basketball and volley ball court as well as a fitness trail. We hope to build a toddler/preschool play area as well.”
“Fortunately for me, I’ve gotten a lot of awards for just being a part of Kiwanis. The one that means the most to me is to be a member of the Ute Pass Hall of Fame,” he said. “You don’t just get that one. They have to vote to give it to you and to have the club give it to me is the greatest award I’ve ever received in Kiwanis.” According to Bert, the local club is one of the most diverse with a wide variety of ages, backgrounds and careers in the group. “We have judges, school teachers, doctors, business owners, construction workers,” he said. “There is even a retired general and colonel major in our ranks!”
The 2015 Breakfast with Santa was a huge success, as was the Lighter Side of Christmas Parade. Winners for the entries this year were:
Grand Marshal award Colorado Springs Christian School
Best Use of Theme Pikes Peak Regional Hospital
Best Use of Lights Cub Scout Pack 20
Most Unique Friends of the Florissant Fossil Beds
Spirit Award Woodland Park Teen Center
Crazy Hat Contest 7 year old Aliyah Summeril
The 2016 LSOC Parade theme is “Rockin’ Around Your Favorite Park” celebrating the 125th birthday of Woodland Park and the 100 Year Anniversary of the National Park Service. Our own local national park, Friends of the Florissant Fossil Beds, are the parade beneficiary for 2016. Stay tuned! More to come! For additional information, visit www.lightersideofchristmas.com.
For Immediate Release
December 10, 2014
The City of Woodland Park and the LSOC Parade Committee would like to send out a big “Thanks” to everyone for their help making the 26th annual Lighter Side of Christmas Parade “Here Comes the Sun Snow – Celebrating 50 Years of Beatlemania” a huge success December 6. The City of Woodland Park was well represented with both participants and viewers present for the parade, fireworks and annual tree lighting ceremony. The attendance this year, I believe, greatly surpassed past parades. Great small town activity once again benefiting the Ute Pass Symphony Guild!
Winners of this year’s trophies were:
Spirit Award – IBEX Realty Group
Most Unique – Cub Scout Pack 20
Best Use of Lights – Girl Scout Cadet Troop 3649
Best Use of Theme – Mueller State Park
Grand Marshal – Pikes Peak Regional Hospital
Thanks Jerry and Vicki Good for their continued support of the “Crazy Hat Contest” honoring Mike Williams. This year’s winner was Aidan Bates, who received a $200 gift certificate from Wms. Log Cabin Furniture and tickets to Gold Hill Theater.
Special thanks to Northeast Teller County Fire Department, Sherriff’s Posse and TCSR for the bum fires and Santa’s “sleigh” in the parade. Woodland Park Police Department, thanks for taking on the parade detour and missing all the fun downtown. You did get to see the fireworks! Couldn’t do it without you guys and gals!!! Woodland Park City and Public Works departments, thanks for the road barriers, electricity and support of our volunteers. Also to the Rampart Range Library for their hosting of the LSOC Gingerbread House contest. A special thank you to all of our sponsors this year (see www.lightersideofchristmas.com for a complete list). The Yellow Submarine Treasure Hunt was found by Harrison Blouch from Colorado Springs.
Also thanks go out to Grand Marshal Jane Mannon, announcers Debbie Miller, Dave Paul and Mike Perini, judges Mike Dougall, Lenore Hotchkiss and Rita Randolph, Pikes Peak Rotary and Dave Paul for the use of their sound systems, Sandy King and Nancy Spradling for their participation on the LSOC committee representing the Ute Pass Symphony Guild, Teller County Sheriff’s Office, Matt Upton for website support, Ken and Nancy Hartsfield, Waste Management and KWPB team for trash pickup, John Bennitt, Kynta Bennitt and friends, LSOC Official Parade Photographer Rod Dion, Deb Pinello and staff at the annual tree lighting ceremony, Craig Harms and the Woodland Park Wind Symphony, Summit Singers and committee members Gail Wingerd, Jan Cummer, David Mals, Val Robertson and our Christmas Parade Wife Doreen Ward.
We are looking for new members to help with the planning of next year’s parade, the 27th celebration of the Lighter Side of Christmas. If interested, drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org or David Buttery email@example.com at the City of Woodland Park.
LSOC Committee Chair
The 2014 Lighter Side of Christmas (LSOC) parade committee is back at work planning events and activities for the 26th anniversary of the Lighter Side of Christmas Parade, scheduled for Saturday, December 6 at 6 pm in downtown Woodland Park. The parade theme this year recognizes the impact the Beatles had on America 50 years ago with “Here Comes the
Sun Snow – Celebrating 50 Years of Beatlemania.”
The LSOC Committee was thrilled to present a check for $5000 to the Woodland Park Community Cupboard, the 2013 parade beneficiary. “The LSOC parade is one of the best holiday events in our area,” stated WPCC Director Janie Child. “To work with this dedicated committee was a great experience for me. The Cupboard appreciates all the time and effort put into this annual event by the committee. The community’s support is amazing.”
The parade theme this year celebrates the 50th Anniversary of the Beatle’s album release in the United States and “The Fab Four’s” first live appearance on “The Ed Sullivan Show.” This singular event changed America forever and provided a seismic sociological shift in our culture. With John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr, the band became widely regarded as the greatest and most influential act of the rock era and according to the Recording Industry Association of America, the best-selling band in the United States.
Each year, the LSOC Committee chooses a recipient for the parade fundraising effort. “Keeping with the music theme of this year’s parade, The Ute Pass Symphony Guild is the recipient for 2014,” stated committee chair Tracie Bennitt. The primary mission of the volunteer Ute Pass Symphony Guild is to present the annual “Symphony Above the Clouds” featuring the Colorado Springs Philharmonic. This was the 34th year that family and friends enjoyed, at absolutely no cost, this premiere summer event. The Guild also purchases tickets to the Colorado Springs Philharmonic special performance for elementary students. Teller County and Lake George children in the 4th grade, their chaperones, and sponsors are able to enjoy a concert designed to promote the education and appreciation of orchestra music. Support of The Ute Pass Symphony Guild helps defray the cost of bringing the Philharmonic to Woodland Park and elementary school children. Their success is measured by the ever-growing number of attendees, as well as the strong support of the Teller County community, businesses, individuals, and the Woodland Park Government.
The “Fill the Van” campaign is going to take place again this year, with parade attendees being asked to bring nonperishable food items to fill the Community Cupboard van following the parade during tree lighting and awards ceremony at the Ute Pass Cultural Center. The Annual Crazy Hat Contest, sponsored by Williams Furniture is taking place the night of the parade. The committee is organizing the annual city wide “Holiday Treasure Hunt” that will kick off at the November 14 with the first clue. The individual that finds the LSOC Yellow Submarine, based on weekly clues provided at sponsor businesses, will win a gift basket full of goodies from local businesses, valued in the past at over $1000. The WP Library district is also hosting the annual Gingerbread Contest, sure to be a tasteful event.
Details are available on this web site, where you can explore sponsorship and participation opportunities for the 2014 Lighter Side of Christmas Activities and Parade. Please contact Sandy King at 687-8167 or Nancy Spradling at 687-1304 if you are interested in being a sponsor. Additional questions may be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org or 719-687-7375.