Cheyenne

Bob Beck

Several years ago Cheyenne residents Bob and Jill Jensen went looking for a service dog to assist Jill with her multiple sclerosis. Their search took them to Kansas City where they acquired their animal. The couple then wondered about developing a training facility for various types of service dogs in Cheyenne, which is unique in this region. The project that Bob and Jill Jensen developed is called K9s 4 Mobility.

Karen Cotton

A new children’s book tells the story of the Cheyenne sheriff department’s K-9 unit. K-9 & Deputy Heroes of the Laramie County Sheriff’s Department focuses on the law enforcement agency's dogs and their handlers.

To write the book, author Karen Cotton partnered with deputies and sergeants in Cheyenne during trainings and a ride-along. Cotton said one of the reasons she wrote a non-fiction book for kids about a K-9 Unit is to show them the dogs aren’t as scary as they may seem.

Will Dinneen

May is Historic Preservation Month, and the City of Cheyenne kicked it off by loading three 19th century homes onto trailers and moving them to a new neighborhood.

Photo from cheyennecity.org

Laramie County voters decided Tuesday which projects to fund through a sixth-penny sales tax. Of the seven items on the ballot, only two failed.

Among the projects was a proposal to build a new municipal court building and expand the county courthouse. That ballot item passed within such a narrow margin that it triggered a recount. County residents also green-lighted a jail expansion and a new, multi-purpose event facility.

City of Cheyenne

The Cheyenne Metropolitan Planning Organization is emphasizing traffic circle safety in the city’s eleven roundabouts as part of a new safety campaign.

Tom Mason, director of the Metropolitan Planning Organization, said Cheyenne and many other cities are moving towards traffic circles since they are safer than traditional 90-degree intersections.

https://pixabay.com/en/chemistry-chemical-flask-glass-155121/

After accepting a $15 million dollar loan from the State of Wyoming, Standard Alcohol Inc. is continuing plans for a new facility at Swan Ranch, outside of Cheyenne. The loan is set to be paid back in twenty years, while the rest of the funding for the $76 million dollar plant will come from private investments.

The company will use natural gas, coal, and CO2 to create a gasoline additive that company vice president Robert Johns says is high value.

Marian Orr

Marian Orr has been elected to be Cheyenne’s next Mayor.  Orr won Cheyenne’s hotly contested mayoral race with 56 percent of the vote.

Throughout her campaign, she said she was focused on repairing infrastructure in the city, especially roads, and improving the city’s police force. Now she said it will be a matter of moving funds around.

Mayoral candidates Marian Orr and Amy Surdam were friends for a couple of years. Then, they each learned the other was seeking to become Cheyenne’s next mayor. Marian Orr said they decided to meet up.

“We had coffee,” said Orr. “I knew that she was considering, and I wanted to be very upfront with her that I was considering the race, as well.”

Amy Surdam remembered the meeting, as well.

Cheyenne’s two mayoral candidates have raised nearly $50,000 over the course of their campaigns, according to new filings with the Laramie County clerk's office. 

Amy Surdam, who is running on a platform of improving amenities in Cheyenne, raised more than $30,000, largely during the primary race. Of that, $3,500 came from political action committees, including the Cheyenne PAC, Federated Firefighters of Wyoming PAC and the Wyoming Realtors PAC.

Marian Orr, Amy Surdam

The Cheyenne mayoral race is heating up as it heads into its final weeks before Election Day. It’s a historic race, as two women vie to become the city’s first female mayor. 

centralcityopera.org

One of the country’s oldest opera companies is bringing a rags-to-riches-to-rags story to Cheyenne on Thursday evening. The Ballad of Baby Doe tells the scandalous true story of Horace Tabor, who strikes it rich prospecting for silver and leaves his wife Augusta for a woman named Baby Doe. But when silver goes bust, the pair ends up penniless and alone.

Cheyenne Board of Public Utilities

Cheyenne’s drinking water may see an impact in the coming years due to a fire currently burning in Medicine Bow National Forest. The Snake Fire began September 10 and has burned 2,452 acres. Some of the fire is burning near Hog Park Reservoir, a major provider of Cheyenne’s drinking water.

Dena Egenhoff, a spokeswoman for Cheyenne’s Board of Public Utilities, said the water from Hog Park isn’t directly used as drinking water, but is traded with Rob Roy reservoir since that location is easier to transport water from.

Cheyenne Police Department Facebook Page

A Cheyenne man shot three people Wednesday morning at a senior living home, leaving one person dead. Police identified the gunmen as 77-year-old, Larry Rosenberg, who killed himself.

Rosenberg was a resident of the senior living home, Heritage Court Apartments, where the shooting took place a little after 11 a.m. Two of the victims were shot outside the facility, while the third was shot somewhere inside of the building.

A witness that chose not to be identified told KFBC Radio in Cheyenne what he saw after he heard shots.

Bob Beck

Bob Jensen has spent most of his time in Wyoming thinking about improving the economy. For ten years he led the Wyoming Business Council, the state’s economic development arm. Several months ago during a meeting of some Cheyenne entrepreneurs the idea of developing a coding school was pitched. And that discussion led to the development of Array, School of Technology and Design in downtown Cheyenne.

“It is a grassroots effort to try and effect workforce quickly for a growing tech industry in Wyoming,” said Jensen.

Aaron Schrank

In the 2011-2012 school year, Wyoming ranked fourth in the country for sending students to cops and courts. Cheyenne’s Johnson Junior High School referred students to law enforcement at a rate 15 times the national average.  

“I started at Johnson in the fall of 2011,” says Manny Fardella, a School Resource Officer, or SRO, with the Cheyenne Police Department. 

“Johnson was a busy school,” says Fardella. “They did have a lot disturbances and fights. There was some drug activity. There was a whole bunch of things going on.”

cheyennesymphonyorchestra.org

The Cheyenne Symphony Orchestra has extended the contract of its conductor. William Intriligator will remain the orchestra’s Music Director and Conductor through 2022. Intriligator is currently in his eighth season with the orchestra. His current contract was set to expire next year.

balletwyoming.com

A cross-border collaboration brings together two dance companies—one contemporary, the other classical. Ballet Wyoming is teaming up with Colorado’s Davis Contemporary Dance Company to present a mix of classical and modern dance.

Kathy Vreeland is the founder and director of Ballet Wyoming, the state’s only full-time dance company. “I would like to expand the opportunity for both our companies to show dance in Wyoming as it’s never been seen before,” she says.

childrensmuseumofcheyenne.org

The dream of an interactive children’s museum in Cheyenne is one step closer to reality. The Wyoming Humanities Council is investing $25,000 towards a stage and theatre in the new museum. The 300-400 seat venue will be a flexible space that can host events for all ages.

Museum President Amy Surdam says the idea for an interactive museum came from taking her own kids to a children’s museum in Bloomington, Indiana. The interactive exhibits sparked her children’s interest in learning and got Surdam wondering about a similar museum in Cheyenne.

WIKIMEDIA COMMONS

The Cheyenne City Council has been debating a proposed ordinance that would allow those living in certain residential zones in Cheyenne to raise chickens in their backyard. Right now, it is illegal to so do.

What has come to be known as the “chicken ordinance” would allow up to five chickens in a backyard within certain residential zones in Cheyenne. This week the ordinance was tweaked during second reading discussion.

Cheyenne Police Department via Facebook

The Cheyenne Police Department claims racial bias is not an issue for its officers.

The Department released data this week showing how different racial groups in Cheyenne are represented in police citations—and incidents where police use force with a crime suspect.

"We don’t believe it’s a problem here, but with all this discussion nationwide, let’s actually go in—do the analysis so that we can confirm it’s not an issue in the community," says CPD public information officer Dan Long.

Some of Wyoming’s best artists will be recognized this week at the 2016 Governor’s Capitol Art Exhibition and Sale. Four works receiving the Purchase Awards join a growing collection of art in the state’s public buildings. This year’s Purchase Awards go to Jackson artists Martin Hagen and Valerie Seaberg and Laramie artists Dan Hayward and Joy Keown. A painting by Cheyenne’s Rachel Ondrak received the Governor’s Choice Award.

Miles Bryan

Head east from Cheyenne’s F.E. Warren Air Force Base for about thirty minutes and you will see a few wooden A-frame buildings sitting just off the highway. Go inside the big one and you’ll find a ladder. Climb down about a hundred feet, walk past the foot-thick metal blast door,  and you’re inside Quebec 1, a former launch control  center for one of the deadliest weapons ever made–a “Peacekeeper” intercontinental nuclear missile.

Flickr Image

Cheyenne is working to beautify its downtown. The Cheyenne Mural Project is modeled on the Laramie Mural Project. Work is set to start in August and be completed in October.

“We’re really excited and thrilled to be able to introduce more arts into our community, and create some long-term community investment in the downtown,” says Cheyenne DDA/Main Street director Amy Surdam.

The project aims to complete two murals this year, with many more in the future.

Cheyenne is severely lacking in affordable housing – and minorities and people with disabilities are feeling the squeeze the most. That’s according to a study released this week by the Cheyenne Community Development Office.

Federal housing authorities require a study like this every five years for cities to be eligible for hundreds of thousands of dollars in grants.

StoryCorps

Lynn Carlson and Laura Griffith-Carlson talk about Laura’s problem with alcohol. Laura is now ten years sober, and Lynn recounts the difficulties she had with caring for her sister while they lived in Laramie. This story was recorded by StoryCorps in Cheyenne.

Liz Rader - Houston TX

Feb 4, 2015
Liz Rader

My name is Liz Rader, I am a fifth generation Wyomingite from Cheyenne and I currently live in Houston Texas.

istockphoto.com

The 2014 Wyoming Forum kicked off yesterday with a discussion of Wyoming’s tech scene between Governor Matt Mead and two prominent California entrepreneurs. One big topic was whether the Cheyenne-Laramie area or Jackson was the most promising for growth. 

In the last few years demand for public housing assistance across the country has skyrocketed, while congressional funding has stayed flat. Right now federal funds covers less than a fourth of families in the United States eligible for a Section 8 housing voucher. Waitlists for voucher in big cities are often years long, if not closed all together. As Wyoming Public Radio’s Miles Bryan reports that made small cities like Cheyenne more attractive to those seeking housing aid, because of shorter wait times.

Wyoming State Parks, Historic Sites & Trails

Wyoming’s Joint Travel, Recreation, Wildlife, and Cultural Resources committee recently voted to sponsor a bill that would transform a former missile alert facility near Cheyenne into a museum and historical site. The bill would provide one-time funding to establish the site’s exhibits, equipment, and other needs, as well as allocate yearly operational funds.

State Parks Director Milward Simpson says while the bill sponsorship is a step forward, it may still be a long road to a functional attraction.

Holly Frontier

The Environmental Protection Agency has fined a Cheyenne refinery $153,000 for allegedly violating several federal regulations. The EPA alleges that Frontier Refining wasn’t properly training its employees in safety practices and that it misreported or didn’t report the presence of certain toxic chemicals on-site. David Cobb works with the EPA’s enforcement office. He says that’s important information.

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