KRAI News for Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2018

Students in the Moffat County School District have exceeded the state averages for student performance. Superintendent Dave Ulrich says the district performed better than last year, with a slight increase in math scores. In English literacy, seven percent more students achieved one of the top two performance levels, which met or exceeded expectations. Moffat County students exceeded the state average in grades three through 11. In 4th grade, four percent more students were higher than the state average.  The focus on reading has been helped by a grant worth a little less than $1 million over three years. It gave teachers and students in grades K through 5 access to the Wonders reading program.

Kids in Craig took the Seatbelt Challenge last week. All high school kids wearing their seat belts after school on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday were given a coupon for a free ice cream cone from Bear Coal Soda Fountain. Those helping out included staff from Memorial Regional Health, the Colorado State Patrol, and Craig Police.

State officials are trying to find about 140 horses that were sent across the state. The horses had been in the same location as a horse that tested positive for Equine Infectious Anemia in late August in Weld County. If anyone purchased a horse in Weld County between July 18 and August 20, contact Colorado Department of Agriculture. (State Veterinarian Dr. Keith Roehr at 303-869-9130)

The Bender Mountain Fire is now at 75 percent containment, with minimal growth in acreage over the past week. It’s burning in a remote part of northeastern Utah and northwestern Colorado. Firefighters are working on containment lines, and caused a large plume of smoke Monday.

A new solar aquaponics farm is growing in Hayden. It’s called 41North. The vegetables are fueled by the sun and the fish droppings are converted into aquaponics fertilizer. CEO Jay Hirschfeld says the entire building is its own ecosystem. Hirschfeld will be offering tours of 41North starting in early October.

The Yampa Valley Pregnancy and Family Center in Craig will have new hours starting next week. The center will be open from noon to 4 p.m. Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, or by appointment.

Aspen has started a safety program. It’s for beginner and intermediate hikers who want to become climbers. It’s called the Peak Awareness Campaign. Local experts did six seminars on the Front Range this summer. They’re doing it after there were seven deaths on Capitol Peak and the Maroon Bells last summer. And, 60 percent of last year’s search and rescues were people from the Front Range.

Spaceport Colorado is slowly taking shape. Spaceport headquarters are at a small Front Range Airport near Watkins and Aurora. The FAA has given preliminary approval for the airport to become Colorado’s first hub for space tourism and the 11th in the nation. Ships would be able to take off but then fly to altitudes of 50,000 feet. Dave Ruppel is the CEO of Spaceport Colorado, and he used to be the airport manager at Yampa Valley Regional Airport in Hayden.

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