David E. Steiner

Retired USAF, Teacher, Dad, Grandfather, Curmudgeon

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The Estes Park Public Library


Readers of this space are probably among the two or three hundred active holders of Estes Park library cards. Mine is #2189 and it expires in June. At that time I’m going to be issued a card that will expire in December. Why a six month card? Because Estes Park is trying to decide what to do about patrons who live in unincorporated Larimer County and Boulder County, which is to say, outside the new Estes Park Library District, created by an election which voted one-and-a-half million dollars to build a new library.

I know a number of Estes Park folks who voted against it, even though you can’t build much of a library for 1.5 million. They’d like you and me to help pay for it somehow, and by December, according to Judy Hoxsey, library director, “We’ll know where we’re going.” I think that means they’ll have figured out a way to make the Allenspark folks pay to use the Estes Park library.

Of course you and I support the Boulder library with our taxes, and Estes Park people can get a Boulder card at no cost. But any of us can get a library card pretty much anywhere without paying anything for it. Libraries, after all, are supposed to be open to all, without cost. That’s the whole idea behind libraries, isn’t it?

So you may wind up with a different color of card, or a card with a big red “A” (for Allenspark) on it.

In the end, they probably won’t do anything; I doubt you’ll have to drop a quarter in a turnstile to get into the Estes Park library: “Non-Residents Use This Door Only!”

Still, if it concerns you, you might stop by and make your feelings known.

This situation is just one more example of the way life has become more complicated. When I was young, the Estes Park Library consisted of one room, which is now the children’s and audio/visual section, and there was a single, bookish lady in sensible dress, shoes and hair style who was happy to suggest new books. Now the staff wears Nikes, there are at least six people just on the board of directors, and they’re going to issue new cards to everyone “once the automation of the library is complete.” Just what we were all afraid of.

They’d better not fool with my mother’s card number though; she got it in 1927 and it has no expiration date. It’s #37.




© 1985 – 2003, David E. Steiner

Allenspark Wind Columns:


Why Allenspark?

Going Riding [August, 1985]


Used Cars

Peace and Quiet [1986]

Liberals & Conservatives

Going to the Movies

The Screened Porch

The Beginning of The Season

The Weather

The Hilltop Guild Bazaar

The End of The Season

The Gift of Time

The Beavers

Addresses [1987]


Watching the Trees Grow

Postal Rates

Changes in Estes Park

Square Dancing at the Pow Wow

Back to the Hilltop Guild Bazaar

The Solstices

Bird Feeders


The Estes Park Hardware Store [1988]


Limousine Service

A Memorial Service

A Hummingbird


A Hiking Trip

The Estes Park Public Library

Wild Life

Riparian Rights [1989]




Mountain Friendliness

A Motorcycle Trip

Satellite Television

“Weaving Mountain Memories”

Hotel Rates in the Old Days

The Price of Propane [1990]

The Front Range Almanac


Modes of Transportation

Miller Moths

My 50th Column

Modern Conveniences

Rock Climbing

On the Death of Otto Walter, Postmaster

Otto’s Memorial Service

A Big Owl Pot-Luck Dinner

A Whine About Telephone Service [1991]

After the Persian Gulf War

Some Changes in the WIND

The Trip to the Mountains

The Mountains in the Summer


Of Dogs, Music, and Children

Muhlenburg County

To My Grandson

The Sale of Longs Peak Inn

World War II  [1992]

Murphy’s Law and the Computer

The South St. Vrain Canyon


The Hazards of Volunteering

Crime in Our Valley


On the Death of Charles Eagle Plume

Can We All Get Along?

A Partridge in a Pear Tree

Lost Horizon [1993]


Rumors About a Visit by the Pope


More About Fences


The Visit of Pope John Paul II

Forest Fires

The New Sewage System

The Snow Pool

The Good Old Days [1994]

The WIND’s 20th Anniversary

The Bunce School

The Shooting Gallery

The Estes Park Museum

Our Government

U.S. West Takes a Hit

The Year of the Hummingbirds

A New “Yield” Sign

Growth in Allenspark

Private Telephones?

The Salvation Army

Creation Science [1995]

Devolutionizing Big Government



Fort D.A. Russell

Domestic Terrorism

Old and New

Barney Graves

Life in the Wilderness

What’s In a Name?

Arthur C. Clarke


The Estes Park Trail-Gazette Columns:

July 1983


Estes Cone

Johnny Grant

Observations in Estes Park

The Bath House


The Sutherland’s Ice House

How Old is Charles Eagle Plume?


Christmas Trees

Tree Murder

Mountain Driving


Mail Boxes

More About Mail Boxes

“Are you related to ....?”


An Accident

The Wild Cat

A July Reunion

A Visit to Baldpate Inn

Opening Cabins


The Times, They Have Changed

Death and Transfiguration

The Population Explosion

The March of Time

Faith-Based Social Services

Looking for Pitch

Recent Writings I

Recent Writings II

Recent Writings III

Recent Writings IV

Recent Writings V

Recent Writings VI



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