Nov 6, 2012 The Associated Press

Familiar pedestrian bridge reopens

LARAMIE -- The landmark pedestrian bridge over the railroad tracks in downtown Laramie has reopened full-time after crews removed loose lead-based paint and recoated the structure.

The project was finished in late October, about a month ahead of schedule.

The bridge, which is more than 80 years old, connects the east and west sides of town by spanning the Union Pacific's multi-track railroad yards. It's a favorite spot for railroad fans to watch trains roar through on the UP mainline.

The bridge had been closed on weekdays since late September when the $293,000 project began.

Delay sought in arson lawsuit

CHEYENNE -- An insurance company is asking a federal judge in Cheyenne to delay a lawsuit over a disputed insurance claim in a 2010 fire that destroyed a landmark Wyoming hotel.

National Security Corp. has asked U.S. District Judge Nancy Freudenthal to delay acting on a lawsuit in which the insurance company accuses the owners of the Hitching Post Inn, CJM Hospitality LLC, of intentionally burning the hotel to collect $13.6 million in insurance money.

Federal authorities recently charged a New Mexico man with arson in connection with the fire. The hotel had been a favorite lodge and watering hole for Wyoming lawmakers for decades.

Lawyers for CJM have told Freudenthal they oppose National Security Corp.'s request to delay action on the civil lawsuit while the criminal charges are pending.

Record beet harvest in Bighorn Basin

WORLAND -- This year's sugar beet harvest in the Bighorn Basin set a record for tons per acre.

The average was just over 29.3 tons per acre, while sugar content was close to a record at 17.9 percent, according to Wyoming Sugar Vice President and Manager Vince Salzman.

"We had a really good harvest," Salzman said.

About 300,000 tons of sugar beets was delivered to the four Wyoming Sugar receiving stations in Riverton, Midvale, Basin and at the factory yard in Worland.

The beets will be processed into 840,000, 100-pound bags of sugar, the Northern Wyoming Daily News reported.

Cargill markets the sugar to a broad base of customers in the West and Midwest.

"A little bit of everybody gets a taste of our sugar," Salzman said.

The harvest began Sept. 17. Warm weather limited the times when growers could deliver their beets. Early on, they delivered their beets in the morning and had to be done before temperatures warmed in the afternoon.

Frontier expansion to include Jackson

DENVER -- Frontier Airlines is expanding its service.

It has started flying between Denver and Minot, N.D. on certain days of the week, and it plans to expand on its summer service between Denver and Jackson Hole Airport in Wyoming with flights this winter.

The carrier started offering nonstop flights between Denver and Minot on Monday. It will fly between the two cities on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays.

Starting Feb. 13 through April 7, it plans to offer winter flights between Denver and Jackson Hole on Wednesdays and Sundays.

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