Members of Farrell clan claim another Yule Log find
Some things never change.
Members of the Farrell family won Steamboat Spring’s annual Yule Log Hunt for the fourth time in the past five years. They discovered the 50-pound log behind the rodeo sign at the junction of Fifth Street and Howelsen Parkway on Sunday afternoon.
Tammy Herfurtner and Shaunna Watterson, cousins of Glen Farrell, found the log for the second year in a row. Between Herfurtner, Watterson, Farrell and his brother-in-law Alan Selch, the family has found the log at least a dozen times over the past two decades.
“It’s a Christmas tradition for us,” Herfurtner said Monday. “We’re probably a little bit more dedicated (than other log hunters).”
After needing only three clues to solve last year’s hunt, Herfurtner and Watterson said they only needed one clue this year.
The phrase “hidden by exact design” first led the sisters back to Steamboat Springs Cemetery, where last year’s log was hidden. They also checked area baseball fields before focusing their attention on places with wood-carved signs like the one at the cemetery. That search led them to the sign near the rodeo grounds, where the log sat in plain view, Herfurtner said.
“I can’t believe someone walking by didn’t see it,” she said.
The annual Yule Log Hunt is sponsored by Tread of Pioneers Museum and the Steamboat Springs Chamber Resort Association, which provides $100 in “chamber bucks” to those who discover the log.
As is also tradition for the Farrell family, the money will be spent on a group dinner.
Jayne Hill, president of the Tread of Pioneers board of directors and author of the Yule Log Hunt clues, said she might suggest the formation of a committee next year to perform a thorough review of the clues before they’re announced.
“Maybe I’m not smart enough,” Hill said Monday.
Hill said she has received calls from people requesting that members of the Farrell family be banned from the hunt.
“It’s really not my duty to eliminate people,” Hill said. “They’re using the same clues everyone else uses. I think they just work harder. They decipher every word. I’d hate to see them eliminated, but I can see why people get frustrated.”
Herfurtner said she doesn’t want her family excluded from the contest.
“But I don’t want to upset anyone, either,” she said.
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