Local News

  • Hundreds line up for SmartCo grand opening

      Hundreds of eager customers lined up Aug. 4 outside the new SmartCo Foods grocery emporium, which held its grand opening before the sun had breached the horizon.

    The new store, the latest in the chain’s foray into the state, handed out gift cards to the first 250 customers, who began flooding into the market shortly after 6 a.m.

    “At a lot of our stores, it starts at about 4 or 5 the night before,” manager David Crookston said of the throng waiting for the store to open.

  • Salmonella cases confirmed in 8 diners at The Fort

    Salmonella recently sickened eight people and likely affected 20 others who ate at The Fort restaurant in Morrison, and the Jeffco health department is looking into the situation.

    “We are corresponding on patients who ate at the restaurant between July 10 through 16,” said Jeffco Public Health spokeswoman Nancy Braden. “We are involved in an ongoing investigation.”

  • County assessor running unopposed in November

      Jefferson County Assessor Jim Everson anticipated a tsunami of protests in 2009, suspecting that higher-than-expected property-tax valuations would befuddle homeowners. But the wave never came.

    His office prepared well ahead of time for the protests, he said. It sent notices to property owners, hoping that would brace them for potentially disappointing valuations, which were based on home-sales figures from June 2008, when houses fetched more of a premium.

  • Rodeo at Jeffco Fairgrounds cancels tail-dragging event


    Promoters of a Mexican rodeo held Sunday at the Jeffco Fairgrounds canceled a controversial event in which bulls are forced to the ground by their tails.

    The American Humane Association, an animal advocacy agency, had said it was pursuing an injunction to prevent the coleadero event, which the county had refused to block.

    “We’re very pleased that the promoters have adjusted their event schedule and did something that’s right for everyone,” said sheriff’s spokeswoman Jacki Kelley.

  • Community walk to benefit Rett syndrome research

    Hundreds will gather Aug. 14 at Clement Park for the annual Walk-N-Roll for Rett, an event that raises money for research into the incapacitating neurological disorder known as Rett syndrome.

    The walk, organized by the Rocky Mountain Rett Association and previously known as the Colorado Western Strollathon, is in its fifth year. The event features a 1.4-mile walk around the park, a carnival, live music, a magician and a chuck-wagon lunch.

  • Neighborhood connections


    Residents in neighborhoods across the county poured into the streets Aug. 3 for an evening of camaraderie and crime-awareness barbecues. In South Jeffco locals celebrated the 26th annual National Night Out with food, children’s activities and appearances by fire and sheriff’s officers.

    “It just gets everybody together. You get to know your neighbors,” said Sheri Gallagher, an organizer for the event in the Hillside at Stony Creek neighborhood. “It’s just great for the community.”

  • Body found along bike path

    A body was found early Sunday morning along a bike path near C-470 and West Bowles Avenue. A bicyclist discovered the unidentified man about 6:10 a.m. while riding on the trail.

    The death does not appear suspicious, said sheriff’s spokeswoman Jacki Kelley, though investigators are interviewing acquaintances of the man, whose next of kin have not yet been notified.

    “The body has been removed,” she said. “It’s still under investigation.”


  • Incumbent Summers talks about health care, economy

    Two-term Republican state Rep. Ken Summers has spent more than three decades building a career in Christian-service organizations.

    The Colorado native and longtime Lakewood resident began work as an associate pastor at a Pentecostal church in 1978, and he was most recently hired as executive director of Teen Challenge of the Rocky Mountains, a Christianity-based program for “those with life-controlling problems.”

  • State lawmaker’s nephew killed in Afghanistan

    A naval officer related to South Jeffco state Rep. Jim Kerr was killed July 23 while on a tour of duty in Afghanistan.

    Petty Officer Justin McNeley, 30, who grew up in Wheat Ridge, had been stationed in Afghanistan for nearly a year, serving a support mission with land-based forces.

    “He was a really good kid,” said Kerr, McNeley’s uncle through marriage. Kerr and his family spoke briefly to media outlets, later issuing a statement through the Navy and asking for privacy.

  • Libertarian congressional hopeful ‘panhandles’ for contributions

      Libertarian congressional candidate Rob McNealy and a group of supporters panhandled for campaign contributions July 28 in Aurora, holding signs reading “Betcha’ can’t hit me with a quarter” and “Throw the bums out of D.C.”

    Passing drivers at the busy Interstate 225 northbound off-ramp at Parker Road seemed to respond tepidly to the tongue-in-cheek stunt, though some honked horns or rolled down car windows to accept pamphlets.