Movin on with Nellie: See Valley bred fun every weekend

My friend Patt Morgan-Lloyd and I were talking about how something happening every weekend in the Valley. About the time she called, I heard a cannon rattle the windows.  I thought to myself, “The parade is starting.”

She said, “Nelda, write something about the Creede Chocolate Festival or the Ski High Stampede.” 

I told her that I’m allergic to chocolate, but I’ve been to the Stampede before.

In fact, my son gifted me tickets to the stampede the year that deep-voiced Josh Turner was the big ticket. Getting ready was a snap but finding a parking spot close enough for me was more challenging.  My son did that and met me and my service dog at the entry.  We entered the stadium after eyeing the amusement fair next door with the Ferris wheel lit up.  Energetic humming crossed our ears too. Inside we greeted friends and colleagues we knew and settled in to the spot to hear and SEE Josh Turner sing, Long Black Train.  Wow!

Another year, Patt brought her daughter and grandchildren for front row parking at my house. While the kids walked hand-n-hand to the street view, Patt and I pulled lawn chairs up two or three houses for a better view, too.  We laughed and appreciated the showtime.

Yet one more time, I remember walking in the July 4th parade with others in the local prevention team and community coalition.  My service dog accompanied on this one and all the children wanted to pet him.  I gave out popsicles to all I could.  Still another, I walked with the Salazar’s running for office entourage in the Manassa Pioneer Days!  I suffice to say that my smile and wave were my workout then.  One year I accompanied Ruth Heide to the Crestone July 4th where we saw a man leading the parade decked out in mud and strategically placed leaves.  The fire department drenched the street lined crowd in fresh fire hose water, too.  Others benign and tossing wrapped candy for children always had waving politicians plus the classic car or milk delivery truck.

The progressive art show called the Rio Costilla Art Studio Tour ( in Costilla County is often a hit. I remember the tour one year was so inspiring and fun to meet the artists in their Garcia, San Luis, Jarosa or Chama studios.  For me, this studio tour is the best reason for living here in the Valley.

But then again, my friend Patt says, “Nelda, it doesn’t take much to make you happy!” As always, I laugh and beg to differ.  LOL.

—Nelda Curtiss is a former substance-prevention media specialist, journalist, and retired college professor who enjoys writing and fine arts. Contact her at [email protected]