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The accident, 1955

16-year-old Norm’s first car wreck, in 1955, takes a shocking turn when his Mom takes him to the police station to report the fender bender.

I’m still moving away, but I thought you might like this video from last summer. This is one of my favorite of all of Norm’s many, many stories.


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So Long Fort Collins

Writing Lost Fort Collins has been a load of fun. In fact, it’s been an obsession. But lately,  just about every part of my life has changed. My work is drying up, my family is transitioning, and I’m ready for some change.

So, I’m moving on. To Bismarck, North Dakota, of all places.

But before I go, let me say this: It is an honor to be read, and especially to have others participate in my enthusiasm. Many of you told stories, asked questions, sent photos, or offered up ideas. Lately, you’re not even talking to me anymore, but to each other.  I love that.  Many of you contributed history of  Fort Collins that otherwise had never been captured.

I’m prouder of Lost Fort Collins than almost anything else I’ve ever done. Thanks for being part of it.

Cat

P.S. If you want to stay in touch, feel free to friend me on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/catmcc) or write cat at lostfortcollins.com

A couple months ago, Lost Fort Collins posted a story about 1970s band Cunningham Corner. That article sparked “a lot of e-mails and phone numbers … exchanged from countless friends of the band,” says Kevin Donnelly.

Now, the band plans a reunion! Probably in Los Angeles, probably Spring or Summer, says Donnelly.

According to Doug White, the following members are already on board:
Kevin Donnally
David Fuog
Scott Galbraith
Jimmy Davenport
Craig Karp
Jim Thompson
Tom Buckman
Pete Wasner
Don Kuhli
Lee Rabacheck

But that’s not everybody. The band is looking for anyone who ever played with the group. If you know any former members, White says contact any of the members, or write Doug directly at imdoug at comcast.net.

That’s right, I said CHRISTMAS. Colored lights, Stars, Christmas trees, and Santa Claus. In the 1950s, the whole town celebrated Christmas unapologetically. And Ruth B. Dermody took pictures to prove it. Click through to see holiday details. Is that a nativity in front of the courthouse?

City Hall. It doesn't look much different now.

College Avenue. Even without holiday lights, downtown was brighter with neon signs.

Our unloved mid-century courthouse. 1957-1999

Credits

All photos by Ruth B. Dermody.

Thanks to Jim Burrill for letting me use them. Jim has lots more family photos in and around Fort Collins at his blog http://lapoudre.multiply.com/journal

Lost Louis Armstrong

If you’re new in town, you might not know about Louis Armstrong.  He was a life-size statue on the stage in Old Town Square. Rocked off his foundation, he disappeared one night in 2001.

What became of him? Still missing. I’m only bringing him up now because he came up in a conversation a year ago, and I couldn’t find a single picture of him online. Then the other day I found this in my photos:

Have you seen this? Maybe in the attic of your frat house?

Until we get Satchmo back, only statues that are too big or too ugly to be stolen will be allowed in Old Town Square….

[Become a fan of Lost Fort Collins on Facebook]

My long-lost friend Ute came to visit today, and caught this while we were dining downtown. Ute said I could use her photo, but not say the  name of the restaurant because that’s unkind to the business.

Okay, I won’t say where we were. But use a disinfectant wipe on your Parmesan dispenser if you eat outside anywhere in the next few days, okay?

ArmstrongMarketsI have had SUCH a hard time keeping this quiet– I didn’t want to say anything until it was done. But for several weeks the Armstrong Hotel has been preparing a nice souvenir map of the neighborhood markets that the Lost Fort Collins blog wrote about last year.

The map in my original post was lame, and inaccurate. The Armstrong’s version, which is now available, is nice enough to frame! And it includes a tour of downtown ghost signs.

You still have to use Lost Fort Collins if you want to find all 17 markets. But the Armstrong’s more limited version is just right for your friends and out-of-town guests who maybe don’t have to be obsessive and comprehensive about everything, and just want to go on a nice bike ride and see a few sites.

I hear people like that exist.

Get the map here: http://www.thearmstronghotel.com/outonthetown.php. Click on “Bike through History,” and you’ll find the map in PDF format.

Or ask for one next time you stay at the hotel.