News of Riverton, Lander and Fremont County, Wyoming, from the Ranger's award winning journalists.
Jul 2, 2013 - By Steven R. Peck
The calendar has flipped to the first of the two all-summer months. July has arrived.
Here's how the poet Niji Chrys embraced the month:
I will paint July
with charming colour
so that she will be captured in delight
and her soul enraptured
because my heart is in July.
Now, some Independence Day scheduling information: The Ranger will not publish this Thursday, July 4, in observance of Independence Day. The offices of The Ranger, the Advertiser and Ranger Printers will be closed Thursday as well.
The press will roll again Friday, when we'll be back on our normal schedule.
The Thursday holiday also means we won't publish a separate Diversions section for Sunday. Diversions has a regular Thursday-morning press time, so we'll give the press crew the day off and fold in most of the regular Diversions features into Section A for this week.
Fremont County joined the rest of America in stunned sadness upon waking Monday to the news that an entire crew of 19 firefighters died in Arizona while trying to protect a small ranching town from a fast-moving wildfire.
We'll join with other media in reporting the ongoing news of this shocking tragedy, and further editorial comment will be forthcoming as well.
For now, imagine the almost unbearable sorrow afflicting the loved ones of the lost firefighters, the community in which they lived, and the department they served. If you can make a donation to assist the families and the department, here is a recommended recipient that has vowed to help coordinate pledges from around the nation:
The 100 Club of Arizona
5033 N. 19th Ave., Suite 123
Phoenix, AZ 85015
Donations and condolences also can be handled online at: www.100club.org/web/100Club
10 cents more
If you haven't filled your gasoline tank yet this week, you will notice a sharp increase in the price per gallon. Wyoming's new 10-cent-per-gallon fuel tax took effect Monday, and the sign-changers were busy posting the higher prices. Diesel now goes for $4 a gallon at some stations -- and all this as the "summer driving season" is just getting started.
The new tax was recommended by the governor and passed by the Wyoming Legislature, with the extra funds earmarked for road maintenance and improvements statewide.
Whoever will be in charge of spending the new revenue has a firm mandate from the rest of us: Put that money to its absolute best possible use, because there is not a household or business in Wyoming that won't feel a significant and immediate pinch financially from the higher prices.
Five in the 500
After a dismal third week of June, followers of our ongoing Five in the 500 investment experiment have reason to feel better as July begins.
On Jan. 21, President Obama's second inauguration day, we imagined investing $500 in a fund based on the daily rise or fall of the Standard & Poors 500 Index, one of the familiar stock barometers known to average Americans.
The index took a punch in the nose just as spring was turning to summer, but it rebounded last week and continues to be well ahead of the game five months into the test.
As of Tuesday morning, your $500 would have grown to $539.83.
Home of the brave
Fremont County likes is Fourth of July celebrations, and there are some good ones again this year. If you plan it right, you can hit the morning parade in Lander, the afternoon festivities in Dubois, and the nighttime fun in Pavillion.
That's a busy day -- but it's the Fourth, after all. Wherever and however, enjoy the holiday.