Tales from the Tread: Brown Bag series celebrates 20 years

Candice Bannister/For Steamboat Today
Filmmaker Modesto Compestine, addressing an audience at the Tread of Pioneers Museum, describes a device he used to splice film he shot in the early 1960s to document ranching with draft horses in Strawberry Park. Museum Executive Director Candice Bannister looks on.
Tom Ross
If you go: What: Tread of Pioneers Museum’s Brown Bag Summer Storytelling Series When: Noon, every Friday from June 30 to Sept. 1 Where: Tread of Pioneers Museum, 801 Oak St. Free. To download a full season schedule, go to

Steamboat’s Western heritage and friendly people are often cited as some of the best characteristics of our town. The Brown Bag Summer Storytelling Series at the Tread of Pioneers Museum combines the best of both — our valley’s rich history and fascinating stories told by the intriguing locals who lived them.

The summer storytelling series, formerly known as the lecture series, now in its 20th year, has become a locals’ favorite summer event and an essential tool for capturing oral history for the museum archive and future generations.

All Brown Bag events are free and take place from noon to 1 p.m. on Fridays all summer long at the museum on 800 Oak St., unless otherwise noted (like the special Ghost Mine Driving Tour to Oak Creek on June 30). Don’t miss this summer’s series to learn more about our valley’s vibrant history and people who will generously share their stories.

The 2017 series: June 30 to Sept. 1

• June 30: “Ghost Mine Driving Tour to Oak Creek” with historian Jim Stanko. Hop on our bus and ride in comfort as you see and learn about the coal mining history of Routt County along HWY 131. Once in Oak Creek, we’ll have a guided tour of the Tracks and Trails Museum, before returning to Steamboat. Time: 9am-12pm. Cost: Museum Members – $20; Non-Members – $25; kids under 12 – $15. Reservation and prepayment required— by 6/23.

• July 7: “Everybody Knows Cookie.” Legendary local Cookie Lockhart shares her family history and tales of growing up in Steamboat Springs.

• July 14: Members from Colorado Mountain College and the Bud Werner Memorial Library share history and memories in “A Legacy of Learning: Celebrating 50 Years of Colorado Mountain College and Bud Werner Memorial Library.”

• July 21: “Pioneer Women: A Back Story from Four Families Who Settled in Routt County” as researched and told by writer and third generation local Chris Andrew.

• July 28: Sandra Sherrod speaks about her family history and their close ties with their rural Yampa Valley neighbors in “The Sherrod Family: A Retrospective.”

• Aug. 4: Pat Carney, Old Town Hot Springs former Executive Director for 42 years and current Project Manager, shares the 140-year history of one of Steamboat Springs’ oldest institutions in “Old Town Hot Springs Then and Now.”

• Aug. 11: In partnership with the Steamboat Springs Arts Council’s All Arts Festival, renowned Western artist and Clark, CO resident John Fawcett presents “John Fawcett: An Artist’s Perception.”

• Aug. 18: Become a history sleuth in “Identifying Family Photos” with Megan Friedel, Curator of Photography from History Colorado. Friedel will demonstrate tricks and tips to identify people, events, places, and dates of photographs using fashion, photo processes, and online resources in this hands-on, interactive talk.

• Aug. 25: “Rewriting My Father’s Words.” Routt County native Connie Wagner speaks about her experience writing her father, Perley C. Green’s story, her family’s ranching history, and more.

• Sept. 1: Digital Services Librarian Alysa Selby at the Bud Werner Memorial Library presents “Gems of Three Wire Winter.” Selby will discuss the recently digitized, online magazine and oral history project. Hear audio clips from locals about the early days of Steamboat Springs and find out how you can dive deeper into this unique research tool.

If you are interested in sponsoring a Brown Bag to ensure the future of this valuable oral history program, contact Candice Bannister at 970-879-2214 or Each event sponsor will receive front row seats to the event in addition to other benefits.

Candice Bannister is executive director of Tread of Pioneers Museum in Steamboat Springs.

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