COVID-19

Town updates and public health resources

 

mask graphic

The Town of Estes Park is committed to following the guidelines of public health agencies to help control the COVID-19 pandemic. Operational updates, messages from officials, and resources are included below.

June 23 -- Town Administrator signs Emergency Order 10-20

El administrador del Pueblo, Travis Machalek, firmó la Orden de emergencia 10-20, renunciando a las tarifas de permisos de uso temporal para participar en "Embrace the Views/Disfrute de las Vistas". Obtenga más información sobre el programa en www.estes.org/outdoordiningandretail

Town Administrator Travis Machalek signed Emergency Order 10-20, waiving fees for Temporary Use Permits for participation in "Embrace the Views." Learn more about the program at www.estes.org/outdoordiningandretail

Emergency Order 10-20

June 16 -- New program allows businesses to expand into public outdoor spaces by permit

Nuevo programa permite a las empresas expandirse, con permiso, a espacios públicos al aire libre

New program allows businesses to expand into public outdoor spaces by permit

The Town of Estes Park is pleased to announce the “Estes Park Embrace the Views” program.  This program is designed to help restaurant and retail business owners within Town limits extend their businesses into nearby outdoor spaces by permit from the Town. The program is intended to augment business viability during the COVID-19 pandemic and necessary distancing precautions. Applications and complete details are available at www.estes.org/outdoordiningandretail

Estes Park restaurants and retail businesses can increase their capacity by applying to use the public sidewalks, parks and private parking areas adjacent to their business locations between the hours of 7 a.m. and 10 p.m. daily. Joint applications of partnering businesses are encouraged. An additional application is required for businesses that serve alcohol.

Expanded permits to use the right of way will be issued until Sept. 12, 2020, and could be extended later into the fall by an order from the Governor’s office or public health department. The Town of Estes Park encourages businesses to think creatively to make this a welcoming and fun experience for customers, while maintaining pandemic safety precautions. For more information, visit  www.estes.org/outdoordiningandretail or contact the Town Clerk’s office at townclerk@estes.org or 970-577-4777.

June 12 -- Virtual Town Hall Meeting on Estes Valley Recovery Efforts June 19

As a valued member of the Estes Valley community, you are invited to attend a Virtual Town Hall Meeting on Estes Valley Recovery Efforts next Friday, June 19 from 1 - 2:30 p.m. 

The partners of the Estes Valley Resiliency Collaborative (EVRC) will host this meeting with the goal of providing a "one stop shop" for updates on the Estes Valley's recovery efforts. All are welcome - business and property owners, full and part-time residents, employees - and please bring your questions!

Brief prepared remarks will be provided by: Estes Park EDC, Visit Estes Park, Estes Park Health, Estes Park Nonprofit Resource Center, Estes Chamber, Town of Estes Park, Restorative Justice Partnership, and Larimer County Economic and Workforce Development Department.

These updates will be followed by a question and answer session via the chat function where you can ask questions of these and other organizational representatives who will be on the webinar. 

Please RSVP to Clayton at cspray@estesparkedc.com to receive information about how to join the virtual meeting. 

Thank you, and we'll "see" you on Friday, June 19 at 1 p.m.

June 5 -- New, virtual participation options for Town meetings

Nuevas opciones de participación virtual para reuniones del Pueblo

New, virtual participation options for Town meetings

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Town of Estes Park has held public meetings virtually, requesting public comment in advance. In order to allow live participation while keeping meetings virtual, the Town will use a new virtual platform for public meetings beginning with the Town Board meeting June 9, 2020. The Zoom Webinar platform allows members of the public who wish to make comments during the meeting to join via call-in (phone) or via online link. Once the individual has joined the meeting, they can provide public comment at appropriate times during the meeting, when called on by a facilitator. 

For more information, including meeting materials, participation instructions, a call-in number and weblink, please visit www.estes.org/boardsandmeetings

For those who only want to watch the meetings, live-streaming and recorded videos will still be available via www.estes.org/videos

To provide advance public comment to the Town Board, please use the public comment form at https://dms.estes.org/forms/TownBoardPublicComment (also available via www.estes.org/boardsandmeetings.) Comments sent via the form for the June 9 meeting must be received by June 9 at 12 p.m. Alternatively, call 970-577-4777 by 5 p.m. June 9 to provide verbal comments which will be transcribed by staff. 

May 29 -- Estes Valley Accommodations Order expires May 31; Estes Park's July 4 fireworks display cancelled 

Las restricciones de alojamiento en Estes Valley vencen el 31 de mayo

Se cancela la exhibición de fuegos artificiales del 4 de julio en Estes Park

Estes Valley accommodations orders expire May 31

Larimer County, CO --- As statewide Safer at Home restrictions are relaxed, the Larimer County Department of Health and Environment and the Town of Estes Park will allow local public health orders limiting the operations of Estes Valley lodging facilities to expire May 31. Beginning June 1, lodging facilities may operate following the required guidance and restrictions set forth by Larimer County and the State of Colorado. A checklist for lodging properties is available at www.larimer.org/variance under “short term rentals.”

As provided by the variance Larimer County received from the State of Colorado, short-term vacation home rentals may now operate with a plan to monitor and follow the new guidance from www.larimer.org/variance

Private, short-term vacation-style rentals such as those arranged through an online hosting platform, including but not limited to VRBO or Airbnb, homeowner rentals, and privately owned residences for rent that are rented for a period of 30 days or fewer are permitted to operate.  Guests should be informed of local restrictions due to COVID-19 prior to arrival; restaurants may only be offering take-out or require reservations, face covering requirements or local closures of recreation facilities.  Owners of short term rental properties must provide visitors access to cleaning supplies, such as disposable wipes, to clean doorknobs, remote controls, and desks before and after each use. Groups larger than 10, except those all from the same household, are not permitted. (Guests are limited to 8 for stays through May 31)

“Larimer County has done a great job on flattening the curve by decreasing the number of hospitalizations, and ICU utilizations, unfortunately the curve does not go away,” says Public Health Director Tom Gonzales. “We need to continue to be diligent wearing our face coverings, social distancing, handwashing and cleaning frequently to continue slowing the spread of the virus. 

Information about COVID-19 is constantly changing, and the public health response adjusts as more is learned about this virus. While there is plenty of news and media information available, LCDHE is encouraging Larimer County residents to view the latest credible information on COVID-19 at www.larimer.org/coronavirus  or www.CDC.gov/coronavirus. Additionally, residents are encouraged to follow LCDHE’s Facebook and Twitter accounts at @LarimerHealth.

Town Administrator Travis Machalek commented, “Our state and county have made great strides in reducing the spread of COVID-19 while increasing medical resources. Now that the State of Colorado has now loosened travel restrictions and Rocky Mountain National Park has opened, we want our lodging properties to be able to operate to the full extent allowed by the public health experts.” 

Estes Park’s July 4 fireworks display cancelled 

Estes Park’s annual July 4 fireworks display is cancelled for 2020. The decision was made in an effort to protect public health and safety during the COVID-19 pandemic. Town Administrator Travis Machalek commented, “Estes Park’s fireworks can draw tens of thousands of people to our community to enjoy the patriotic display.” When July 4 falls on a Saturday, as it does this year, the community may receive up to 40,000 visitors during fair weather. Significant congestion in public areas and viewing areas is inevitable.

Machalek commented, “This decision was made with a heavy heart, as we are constantly seeking ways to lift the spirits of our residents and support our businesses. However, we cannot risk the health and safety of our residents, businesses and guests by drawing such a large concentration of people to an event in town over that weekend.” 

While this event and others have been cancelled in accordance with public health orders, as statewide travel restrictions are loosened, the Town of Estes Park and local businesses are welcoming guests to gradually return. Safety precautions are in place in all Estes Park businesses. Watch for ongoing and rescheduled events in Estes Park at www.estesparkeventscomplex.com. Plan a visit at www.visitestespark.com

 

May 28 -- Friendly, new outreach campaign promotes distancing, masks and hand-washing

Amigable, nueva campaña de divulgación de comportamiento social, promueve distanciamiento, máscaras y lavado de manos

As Estes Park welcomes visitors back to the community, we want everyone to feel safe and comfortable visiting local businesses and enjoying our beautiful community. The safety of our residents, businesses, employees and guests is our highest priority. Local partners have developed a friendly, new campaign to encourage everyone to take care and support three public health priorities -- keeping six feet of distance from others, wearing masks when required by County orders, and washing our hands often.

Various formats of electronic signs and graphics are available at www.estes.org/covid-19, in English and Spanish. Downtown outdoor signage will be updated very soon. Estes Chamber staff will be visiting merchants over the next week, offering prints for storefronts, which will also be available at the Town Hall/ Police Department vestibule at 170 MacGregor Ave. by June 1. 

This new campaign was created by the Estes Valley Resiliency Collaborative (formerly the Accelerated Recovery Team) and includes a diverse group of partnering organizations. Partners include Visit Estes Park, the Town of Estes Park, Estes Chamber of Commerce, and Estes Park EDC, Estes Area Lodging Association, YMCA of Rockies, Rocky Mountain National Park, Estes Park Nonprofit Resource Center, Housing Authority and Estes Valley School District.

Larimer County's mask order applies in Estes Park. Local businesses are required to make sure that everyone in their facility is wearing a face covering, including customers, unless they have implemented additional social distancing measures. Requirements and recommendations are available at www.larimer.org/health/communicable-disease/coronavirus-covid-19/face-coverings-and-masks.

May 27 -- Town's mask ordinance ends, Larimer County mask order applies to Estes Park

La orden de usar mascarilla/cubre bocas en el pueblo termina, la orden del Condado de Larimer todavía se aplica

Cancelation of mask ordinance 07-20

View Emergency Order 09-20

At its May 26 meeting, the Estes Park Town Board directed staff to end the requirements of mask ordinance 07-20, which it enacted May 1. This ordinance established requirements for the use of masks/facial coverings by customers, employees and vendors of all Estes Park businesses, as well as by all people outdoors when downtown. 

Please note, Larimer County mask regulations continue to apply to Estes Park: https://www.larimer.org/health/communicable-disease/coronavirus-covid-19/face-coverings-and-masks

Guidance from Larimer County on when to Wear a Face Covering or Mask

When out of your home in a setting where physical distancing is challenging, we strongly recommend wearing a face covering. Local businesses are required to make sure that everyone in their facility is wearing a face covering, including customers, unless they have implemented additional social distancing measures.

May 3, 2020- Larimer County Face Coverings in Businesses Order  

May 19, 2020- Larimer County Amended Face Coverings Order 

Alternative to Face Covering Checklist

There is no need to wear a face-covering at your home or when you are doing something by yourself a minimum of 6 feet or more away from other people, such as walking your dog. This order does not apply to children under two (2) or to those people for whom a face covering would cause impairment due to an existing health condition. It also does not apply to those working in a location where they will not be within 6 feet of any other individuals or persons working in a professional office who do not have any face-to-face interactions with the public.

While the local ordinance has ended, the Town and community partners still strongly encourage the use of masks in accordance with the Larimer County guidelines above. Partners are working on a new, locally branded outreach campaign to encourage masks, distancing and hand-washing to guests with a friendly approach. Watch for this new information this week.

May 23 -- State partially approves Larimer County variance request to safely reopen ahead of State orders; Town modifies mask requirements for food and beverage businesses

El Estado aprueba parcialmente la solicitud de variación del Condado de Larimer para reabrir de manera segura antes de las órdenes estatales

State partially approves Larimer County variance request to safely reopen ahead of State orders

Larimer County received approval today from the State of Colorado for a number of variances, including the operation of restaurants providing limited in-person service with restrictions, short-term vacation rental homes, libraries, no contact recreation and places of worship. View Larimer County news release announcing approval. View the complete details of the approval at larimer.org/variance

Vacation rental homes must still operate in accordance with local order 05.20 through May 31, available at https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Vi7sJimUYaELZwgBme0oH8vvf1w2QM1V/view.

Town modifies mask requirements for food and beverage businesses

Town Administrator Travis Machalek signed Emergency Order 08-20 May 23, modifying the provisions of Emergency Ordinance 07-20 pertaining to mask requirements in food and beverage facilities to allow the operation of restaurants, food courts, and similar operations as may be permitted under all applicable State and County restrictions. View Emergency Order 8-20

May 20 -- Town allocates $150,000 in additional business relief funds - emergency order 07-20

El pueblo asigna $ 150,000 en fondos adicionales de ayuda comercial

Town allocates $150,000 in additional business relief funds

This week Town Administrator Travis Machalek signed Emergency Order 07-20 to modify the Community Assistance Contract with the Estes Chamber of Commerce and Estes Park EDC for the provision of additional business relief funds.  At the May 12 Town Board meeting, the board approved allocation of an additional $150,000 to the two organizations for the purpose of providing local business relief grants. This brings the total funds provided by the Town for business relief to $300,000. View the Emergency Order at https://drive.google.com/open?id=12ayXv95599MhJBiXoJSpMsCTuYs4xbAW.

May 20 -- Visitor Services team provides community information and helps guests plan ahead

El equipo de Servicios al visitante brinda información a la comunidad y ayuda a los huéspedes a planificar con anticipación
 

Visitor Services team provides community information and helps guests plan ahead

The Town of Estes Park Visitor Services team is available to help prospective guests and local residents in the call center. While the Visitor Center remains closed to the public, Visitor Information Specialists are at work and ready to take your telephone calls every day. Call 970-577-9900 for help between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Destination- and business-related information requested of the team generally includes the status of local businesses and recreation opportunities, how public health orders are affecting the Town, and travel guidelines. Individual businesses are encouraged to contact the team to provide an operational update that can be shared with callers.

COVID-19 has had widespread effects on society and it can be difficult to navigate the resulting guidelines and orders. Visitor Services Manager Teri Salerno commented, "A few critical messages stand out in the information our team provides daily..." 

We can't wait to welcome visitors back to Estes Park!

Our priority is to keep our treasured guests, fellow Coloradans, and our community safe. We are looking forward to our visitors' return. Under Colorado's current Safer at Home order, non-essential travel is still strongly discouraged through May 26. We do not yet know if further orders will discourage travel, so it's difficult to say what the coming months will bring. We are here to help keep you updated, and keep you dreaming about your time in Colorado!

In Estes Park, we care for each others' safety!

Keeping everyone healthy is our number one priority. Rest assured, your health and safety while you are visiting Estes Park is important to us. The Town, along with Larimer County, require face coverings while inside any Estes Park business, and also within the busy downtown corridor. We understand this is an inconvenience, but we hope you will take this simple step to help support our businesses, locals and guests. Bring your most festive masks to show off! And remember -- six feet of distance from others goes a long way in helping to protect ourselves and others.

We are adapting and innovating!

More and more Estes Park businesses are reopening. Many retail stores are welcoming shoppers while keeping distance, wearing masks and offering hand sanitizing stations. Many restaurants are providing take-out or curbside service for hungry patrons. While many events have been canceled, when the time is right and larger gatherings are allowed once again, events will come back according to the current COVID-19 orders in place. We know COVID-19 will be around for a while, so we're adapting to ensure we're ready to welcome guests back when we can.

We are all in this together!

Town staff, representatives of local businesses including the Estes Chamber of Commerce, Visit Estes Park and Estes Park EDC, nonprofits, Rocky Mountain National Park, and other stakeholder groups have formed the Estes Valley Resiliency Collaborative (EVRC) to work together to plan for the longer term recovery, resiliency, and sustainability of our local economy. In addition to thinking creatively and strategically about how we safely reopen and stay open locally, members of the EVRC will also be represented in the County's regional resiliency and recovery efforts.

May 18 -- Customer appointments now accepted at Town Hall

Hemos Comenzado a Aceptar Citas de Clientes en el Ayuntamiento

Customer appointments now accepted at Town Hall 

Following a full closure to comply with COVID-19 public health guidelines, Town Hall will begin a soft reopening May 18 with established guidelines for the safety of community members and employees. During this phase, Town staff will continue to conduct virtual or telephone meetings with customers as much as possible. When in-person meetings are necessary, Town Hall will be open by advance appointment only. No walk-ins will be possible. This protocol will continue until guidelines are further relaxed.

Customers with appointments should use the main entrance to Town Hall and the Police Department facing MacGregor Avenue. Please call the staff member with whom you are meeting to alert them to your arrival. A phone is available in the vestibule. All visitors and staff in the building are required to wear masks. Meetings will be held in designated areas near the main entrance. Surfaces will be sanitized before and after each meeting.

To schedule an appointment, contact the appropriate staff member, preferably by email. Contact information is available at www.estes.org/contact.

All other areas of Town Hall remain closed including utility billing, the south half of the first floor and the second floor. Public restrooms remain open.

The Town is planning for the reopening of other facilities including the Estes Park Visitor Center and Estes Park Museum. Opening dates for these facilities have not yet been established.

May 11 COVID-19 Update -- Town Administrator signs Emergency Rule 06-20 establishing quasi-judicial virtual public hearing procedures

El Administrador del Pueblo firma la Regla de Emergencia 06-20 que establece procedimientos de audiencia pública virtual cuasijudicial

Town Administrator signs Emergency Rule 06-20 establishing quasi-judicial virtual public hearing procedures

On Friday, May 8, Town Administrator Travis Machalek signed Emergency Rule 06-20 establishing quasi-judicial virtual public hearing procedures. As public meetings will likely need to be held virtually for an extended timeframe, these procedures will allow quasi-judicial business to be conducted, which has been delayed with the spread of COVID-19. 

Watch for comment procedures on the agendas for Town Board and Planning Commission meetings at estes.org/boardsandmeetings.

View the full text of Emergency Rule 06-20

May 8 COVID-19 Update -- Estes Valley Safe and Strong Recovery Plan

View the Estes Valley Safe and Strong Recovery Plan

Following is a message from the Accelerated Recovery Team partners including the Town of Estes Park, Estes Chamber of Commerce, Estes Park Economic Development Corp., Visit Estes Park, Estes Area Lodging Association, Rocky Mountain National Park, YMCA of the Rockies and the Estes Park Police Department.

Estes Valley Safe and Strong Recovery - Will You Join Us?

In October 1859, Joel Estes and one or more of his four sons traveled west into the mountains up a route that generally followed the St. Vrain River. Navigating around the narrow, steep portions of the canyon, they then crossed over into the Little Thompson River drainage and followed the gentle slope of Muggins Gulch. At the head of the gulch, they climbed over a gentle rise and looked down into a valley or park, and realized it was some new and unexplored valley. (Colorado History Columnist Kenneth Jessen in the Loveland Reporter-Herald)

For over 100 years the Town of Estes Park has been a destination for those looking to explore life in the mountains and experience the beauty of Rocky Mountain National Park. Many of the people who call Estes Park home today discovered the beauty of this valley while on their own vacations.

Tourism is the bedrock of Estes Park. In fact, we are the only community in Colorado whose main industry has always been tourism. All the people who travel here to escape the city, return to nature and experience a slower pace of life share in the reason why we have made this our home. The people who stay in our lodges, eat in our restaurants and shop in our stores are the ones we have to thank for our thriving economy Without that economic foundation provided by our Town's robust tourism, many of the services and amenities we as a community enjoy would cease to exist.

Estes Park was new and unexplored territory when Joel Estes built his home here, and here we are in unexplored territory again. The COVID-19 pandemic has brought our local economy to a screeching halt and many of our valued employers and employees to their collective knees. However, propelled by the rugged persistence that characterizes our chosen mountain lifestyle, together we will chart a new path towards community and economic vitality once again.

To help the whole community recover from the shock and economic impact of this unprecedented pandemic, several organizations banded together in late March to create an Accelerated Recovery Team -- the Town of Estes Park, Estes Chamber of Commerce, Estes Park Economic Development Corp., Visit Estes Park, Estes Area Lodging Association, Rocky Mountain National Park, YMCA of the Rockies, and the Estes Park Police Department. Together we've been working to create the Estes Valley Safe and Strong Recovery Plan (https://tinyurl.com/ybz2875d) that provides a safe rolling open for our businesses and local economy so that we can welcome back our visitors, while also protecting the people who make Estes Park so great: our residents, employers and employees.

The Estes Valley Safe and Strong Recovery Plan reflects guidance from Governor Polis, Larimer County Health and the Town of Estes Park, in addition to feedback from business owners through focus groups, surveys and primary research conducted by the Accelerated Recovery Team members. The purpose of this joint plan is to unite our business community to operate from the same playbook in protecting the health and safety of our town as we enter the stages of opening business again as directed by the Larimer County Safer at Home schedule (https://tinyurl.com/ya7rpxo3). The more we practice the same health and safety standards, the faster our economy will recover. The Plan includes a checklist for reopening (https://tinyurl.com/ybao4636) that creates a baseline of safety standards and business signage (https://tinyurl.com/ybfnjanr and https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1TMntCFV132-5cP97Y28uQRucL1KilGeV) supporting the County (https://tinyurl.com/y9telwup) and Town (https://tinyurl.com/yd3pcfbh) orders that require face coverings in public areas and inside businesses. The Chamber has created a wholesale co-op for purchasing of hand sanitizer and masks and has also partnered with the EDC to administer Business Relief Grants to business owners thanks to the Town of Estes Park's Community Relief Fund.

While reopening our community our visitors will be an essential part of our recovery, County and State officials intend for travel to be restricted to essential business and within county limits. The solution for our local economy today lies with our residents. While we have over 1,000 displaced workers right now, those who have the means to shop can make a difference. We can make a point to get take out from one of our restaurants, shop for a birthday or celebration downtown, buy a gift card to get that much-needed haircut, plan a "staycation" at one of our local lodges/cabins and/or redirect our philanthropic generosity right into our own backyard by supporting one of our local nonprofits.

The spirit of the Estes Valley is a force to be reckoned with. If we all do our part to support the healing of our community and our economy with one voice, and wear our masks in solidarity (and with a little panache!), we will beat the spread of this virus and our masks will serve as a relic that signifies what this town can accomplish when we work together. The greatest asset we have is YOU, in addition to the visitors who support our tax base. It is going to take all of us to heal, but together we can make Estes Park strong again. Will you join us?

May 4 COVID-19 Updates -- Face coverings required in all Estes Park businesses, and when outdoors downtown

Se requieren cubiertas faciales en todos los negocios de Estes Park, y cuando están al
aire libre

Face coverings required in all Estes Park businesses, and when outdoors downtown

The Estes Park Town Board has enacted an emergency ordinance through June 10 requiring the use of face coverings by everyone in public areas of any business within Estes Park town limits -- including employees, vendors and customers. Businesses are responsible for ensuring these requirements. In addition, the Town's ordinance also requires the use of facial coverings when outdoors in the Commercial Downtown zoning district. A campaign is underway to support businesses with storefront signage, and to install outdoor signage. Materials will be posted at www.estes.org/covid-19 as soon as they are available. The Town's order is similar to the public health order issued by Larimer County May 3, except the local order adds the outdoor requirement for downtown.

The Commercial Downtown zoning district includes Elkhorn Avenue, Moraine Avenue, and side streets including but not limited to MacGregor Avenue, Park Lane, Virginia Avenue, Weist Drive, Cleave Street, West Riverside Drive, Ivy Street, and all parks located downtown including the Riverwalk, Tregent Park, Bond Park, George Hix Riverside Plaza, and outdoor spaces at the Estes Park Visitor Center. View a map of the Commercial Downtown district at https://estespark.maps.arcgis.com/apps/SimpleViewer/index.html?appid=0c6... and via www.estes.org/maps.

Mayor Wendy Koenig commented, "If the risk of people encountering and sharing the virus while in Estes is mitigated, then what happened last winter in Colorado ski towns may not be a prelude to what occurs here." The mayor noted her chief concern is the health and safety of the people who live in, work in and visit Estes Park.

A face covering should be a uniform piece of material that securely covers a person's nose and mouth and remains affixed in place without the use of one's hands. Cloth face coverings should fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face, include multiple layers of fabric, allow for breathing without restriction. Exceptions are granted for children under two years of age and individuals with a medical condition which makes wearing a face covering a risk to their health or breathing.

View the complete Town of Estes Park face covering ordinance 07-20 at https://drive.google.com/open?id=1-sItqZRriV4omGMbNc5vqM7EoM_KPYNh and via www.estes.org/covid-19. View the Larimer County public health order at https://www.larimer.org/sites/default/files/uploads/2020/public-health-f... and via https://www.larimer.org/health/communicable-disease/coronavirus-covid-19.

The Town reopens Riverside and Tregent public restrooms

As more businesses begin to reopen, the Town has reopened public restrooms at Tregent Park and Children's Park. The public restrooms at Town Hall and the Estes Park Visitor Center remain open.

Need someone to talk to?

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic is stressful for people. Fear and anxiety can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions in adults and children. Coping with stress will make you, the people you care about, and your community stronger. Talking to someone can make all the difference. Summitstone Health, in partnership with the Health District of Northern Colorado, is able to help. If you are in crisis, please use the crisis help line at 970-494-4200 ext. 4 or text TALK to 38255 to receive mental health crisis support.

Help your community by making and donating fabric masks

Donation site at Town Hall Larimer County Department of Health and Environment is collecting homemade masks for essential workers. The Town has a donation site at the western Town Hall entrance (vestibule entry to the Police Department, 170 MacGregor Ave.) It will be available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Thank you for your support!

May 1 - State order prohibits vacation rental home operations through May 26

La orden estatal de salud pública prohíbe las operaciones de alquiler de casas de vacaciones

State public health order prohibits vacation home rental operations

Larimer County, CO --- After reaching out to the State of Colorado early this week, Larimer County Department of Health and Environment and the Town of Estes Park received clarification today from the State that its Public Health Order 20-28 "Safer at Home" prohibits the operation of Vacation Home Rentals for the duration of the order, April 27 through May 26. The reference is on page 27 of the order at https://drive.google.com/file/d/1l13eSver8iS1fE149gmKHCLoHPgutNvO/view (available via https://covid19.colorado.gov/safer-at-home). Under the state order, guests at vacation rental homes in the Estes Valley, and everywhere in Colorado, may not be accepted through May 26. Questions and concerns should be directed to the State using the form at https://covid19.colorado.gov/CovidConcerns.

The State's order supersedes, for the time being, the aspects of the April 23 accommodations orders issued by Larimer County and the Town of Estes Park that allowed reopening of vacation home rentals in the Estes Valley. While non-essential travel is still limited by request of the State and County, the primary purpose of these orders was to allow facilities to prepare for when travel becomes less restricted, and to serve essential travel or those traveling within the county.

The Town and County orders continue to apply to all other accommodations. Review the complete orders for the unincorporated Estes Valley at www.larimer.org/coronavirus and for Town limits at https://drive.google.com/open?id=1Vi7sJimUYaELZwgBme0oH8vvf1w2QM1V.

Information about COVID-19 is constantly changing, and the public health response adjusts as more is learned about this virus. While there is plenty of news and media information available, LCDHE is encouraging Larimer County residents to view the latest credible information on COVID-19 at www.larimer.org/coronavirus or www.CDC.gov/coronavirus. Additionally, residents are encouraged to follow LCDHE's Facebook and Twitter accounts at @LarimerHealth.

April 27 COVID-19 Updates -- CDPHE issues Public Health Order for Safer at Home

27 de abril COVID-19 Actualizaciones

April 27 COVID-19 updates

Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment issues detailed Public Health Order for Safer at Home

State of Colorado Public Health Order 20-28 Safer at Home

Guidance from the State at: https://covid19.colorado.gov/safer-at-home

The Town and partners are currently reviewing implications of this order as they relate to reopening of local businesses, including lodging accommodations, and continued non-essential travel restrictions. Please watch for updates this week. The State order went into effect today and represents a phased-in approach. The order expires May 26, 2020, but can be extended, amended or changed. It is important to follow covid19.colorado.gov to keep up with the most current state orders.

Resources for Healing the Whole Person: Webinar #3 Grief over Business or Employment Loss & Conflict Resolution Tools April 29, 1- 2 p.m.

Continue the conversation this week with Grief Recovery Specialist Crystal Givens, who will be joined by Melissa Westover, MA, LPC, Restorative Justice Practitioner. Melissa has been a part of the Estes Park community for 32 years. During that time she has served the community as a mental health practitioner, Restorative Justice Manager, mediator and has worked extensively for and with numerous non-profits. This event is completely free and open to all. Sponsored by the Estes Chamber of Commerce and Town of Estes Park. For additional information and to register, please visit the Estes Chamber at https://business.esteschamber.org/events/details/resources-for-healing-w...

Application period closed for Business Relief funds

The Estes Chamber and Estes Park Economic Development Corporation have announced that the application period for Business Relief grant funding has closed. The organizations received over 100 applications for the $150,000 in Community Relief funding provided by the Town of Estes Park. If you have questions, please contact Adam Shake of the Estes Park EDC at ashake@estesparkedc.com.

April 23 Accommodations Order update, allowing reopening with restrictions

El Condado de Larimer y el Pueblo de Estes Park Emiten Órdenes que Permiten Reabrir
Acomodaciones con Restricciones, el 27 de Abril

Larimer County and Town of Estes Park Issue Orders Allowing Accommodations to Reopen April 27 with Restrictions, Non essential travel still prohibited

Larimer County, CO --- Larimer County Department of Health and Environment and the Town of Estes Park are issuing updated public health orders allowing short-term accommodations within the Estes Valley to reopen April 27 with several restrictions. The previous orders closed accommodations from March 23 through April 26, to limit visitors to the Estes Valley and help slow the spread of COVID-19, coinciding with broad Stay-at-Home orders.

From April 27 through May 31, the new orders allow a guest occupancy of 50 percent of units within multiple-unit lodging facilities. Single-unit accommodations, such as Vacation Rental Homes and Bed and Breakfast Inns, must limit occupancy to no more than 8 individuals. State and local lodging regulations, when more strict, must be followed. No common amenities or areas may be accessible to guests except for check-in and check-out areas. Restrictions may be extended or amended in response to the pandemic.

Review the complete, updated orders for the unincorporated Estes Valley (development area) at www.larimer.org/coronavirus and for Town limits at https://drive.google.com/open?id=1Vi7sJimUYaELZwgBme0oH8vvf1w2QM1V.

The Estes Valley is subject to Larimer County and State of Colorado public health orders and guidelines. The Town of Estes Park has issued orders affecting only the accommodations sector, as this sector was not specifically addressed in the broader public health orders.

Town Administrator Travis Machalek commented, “During the ‘Safer at Home’ phase, visitor services will still be limited in the Estes Valley as businesses operate under guidelines from Larimer County and the State public health experts, and this accommodations order. The Town continues to follow the guidance of public health experts as we balance the current public health situation and the need for businesses to reopen and for people to get back to work. The health of the people in our community remains our number one priority.”

“As we start our phased approach to lifting our stay at home orders, it is necessary to proceed slowly and cautiously. We need to continue protecting the health of the people in the Estes Valley area and minimize the impacts of this pandemic locally,” says Public Health Director Tom Gonzales. “Statewide orders will continue to prohibit non essential travel outside of your county of residence, and we need others not to travel up to the Estes Valley at this time.”

You can help slow the spread of viruses by: Continuing to stay home when you can, and certainly when you are sick, Increasing distance between people to six feet to help reduce spread, Washing hands frequently with soap and water, Avoiding touching your face, Covering coughs and sneezes, Staying home when sick, Wear fabric masks when visiting businesses like a grocery store or in close proximity with other people outside your household, and Avoiding close contact with anyone who has cold or flu-like symptoms.

Information about COVID-19 is constantly changing, and the public health response adjusts as more is learned about this virus. While there is plenty of news and media information available, LCDHE is encouraging Larimer County residents to view the latest credible information on COVID-19 at www.larimer.org/coronavirus or www.CDC.gov/coronavirus. Additionally, residents are encouraged to follow LCDHE’s Facebook and Twitter accounts at @LarimerHealth.

April 20 COVID-19 Updates -- Share gratitude with outgoing Mayor and Trustees; Resources for Healing the Whole Person Webinar; Drug Collection April 25 cancelled

20 de abril COVID-19 actualizaciones

April 20 COVID-19 updates

Share gratitude with outgoing Mayor and Trustees; new Mayor and Trustees take office April 28

As they leave their offices on the Town Board, Mayor Todd Jirsa, Mayor Pro Tem Ron Norris and Trustee Eric Blackhurst will be honored at their final (virtual) Town Board meeting April 28. Unfortunately, the Town cannot host the typical celebration of their service due to COVID-19. We are inviting community members to express gratitude for their public service and wish them well by using the form at www.estes.org/mayorandtrustees by April 28 at noon.

Sworn-in virtually April 28 will be Mayor-elect Wendy Koenig, new Trustees-elect Barbara MacAlpine and Cindy Younglund, and Trustee Patrick Martchink for his second term.

Resources for Healing the Whole Person: Webinar #2 Topic: Help for Parents & Teachers April 22, 1- 2 p.m.

Continue the conversation this week with Grief Recovery Specialist Crystal Givens, who will be joined by Hannah Knox, M.Ed, LPC, NCC for a conversation tailored specifically for parents and teachers. Hannah is a mental Health Clinician with Estes Park School District R-3 and will address talking to children about COVID-19, and about self-care as a tool to help others. The event is completely free and open to all. For additional information and to register, please visit the Estes Chamber here.

Drug collection April 25 cancelled

The Estes Park Police Department's drug collection scheduled April 25 has been cancelled due to COVID-19. Estes Park Health offers a medication take-back station but is currently not allowing general access to its facility unless you have an appointment. We encourage you to safely store your medications until restrictions are lifted and then dispose of them at Estes Park Health. https://eph.org/new-medication-take-back-station-at-estes-park-health/

Need someone to talk to?

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic is stressful for people. Fear and anxiety can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions in adults and children. Coping with stress will make you, the people you care about, and your community stronger. Talking to someone can make all the difference. Summitstone Health, in partnership with the Health District of Northern Colorado, is able to help. If you are in crisis, please use the crisis help line at 970-494-4200 ext. 4 or text TALK to 38255 to receive mental health crisis support.

Help your community by making and donating fabric masks

Donation site at Town Hall

Larimer County Department of Health and Environment is collecting homemade masks for essential workers. The Town has set up a donation site at the western Town Hall entrance (vestibule entry to the Police Department, 170 MacGregor Ave.) It will be available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. More information below. Thank you for your support!

April 17 COVID-19 Updates -- Tips to protect yourself; Business relief grants; Sales tax grace period for businesses

17 de abril COVID-19 actualizaciones

April 17 COVID-19 updates

CDC guidance for safely conducting essential business

We'd like to share the Center for Disease Control's (CDC) guide for safely conducting essential business, such as shopping, accepting deliveries, banking, and getting gas. Protect yourself! https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/essential-go...

En Español: https://espanol.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/essentia...

Gloves are not necessarily recommended unless you are taking care of a person with COVID-19. https://www.healthline.com/health-news/wearing-gloves-while-grocery-shop...

Most importantly, if you are not feeling well, please stay home and ask someone else to help with your essential business.

Emergency order allows Town Administrator to quickly provide business relief grants

In order to quickly distribute Community Relief funds to support local businesses and their employees during the pandemic, emergency order #4 was issued this week to allow the Town Administrator to enter into a community assistance contract with the Estes Park Economic Development Corporation and Estes Chamber of Commerce. The Town will provide $150,000, which is $50,000 over the usual spending limit of the Town Administrator without approval of the Town Board at a scheduled meeting. The order is available at https://drive.google.com/open?id=1pBE3vydeH9L-kS5XcUE75_n7X8N95sgx.

Read today's news release on Business Relief Funding and learn how to apply: https://drive.google.com/open?id=1a-6OVHEjexOVi9Bp6HNIpeNPQ0kWfj7p

More information about the Town's Community Relief and Accelerated Recovery team efforts is available at www.estes.org/COVID-19partners.

Sales tax remittance grace period for businesses

Estes Park retailers that are required to file a sales tax return and remit sales tax on April 20, 2020 may extend their filing and remittance deadline to May 20, 2020. This is a one-time extension of the April 20, 2020 filing and remittance deadline for state and state-administered sales taxes. Complete details at: https://www.colorado.gov/pacific/tax/sales-tax-deadlines

April 15 COVID-19 Updates -- Maintaining the highest quality drinking water during COVID-19

Manteniendo el agua potable de la más alta calidad durante COVID-19

Maintaining the highest quality drinking water during COVID-19

“The Town of Estes Park provides safe, high-quality water that exceeds all stringent state and federal drinking-water regulations,” said Utilities Director Reuben Bergsten. “Estes Park’s water-treatment methods use filtration and disinfection processes which remove and inactivate viruses.” According to the CDC, the virus that causes COVID-19 has not been detected in drinking water. (https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/php/water.html)

Drinking water standards, established by the Safe Drinking Water Act in 1974, are enforced by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. Those standards are strictly upheld by the Town’s Water Division at all times, including during the pandemic. Our laboratory continues to collect water samples throughout the Estes Valley, ensuring all standards are met.

The first priority of the Town’s Water Division is the health and safety of our staff -- to ensure we can continue to test, treat and distribute water. Back in March, we separated our team into two operational groups that do not share spaces, to reduce the risk of spreading the virus. We also have mutual aid agreements with neighboring communities, to provide assistance in the unlikely event that becomes necessary.

At a time when everyone has increased worries of all kinds, we are here making sure water is least of anyone’s concerns. There are no water shortages and we continue to deliver some of the best drinking water in the state, which also plays a critical role in good hygiene practices that slow the spread of coronavirus. Bottled water is entirely unnecessary. Our dedicated team of water professionals continues to be on the job 24/7 serving our community.

April 14 COVID-19 Updates -- Town relief efforts; Emergency Order extending vacation home registration

14 de abril COVID-19 actualizaciones

April 14 COVID-19 updates

Community Relief Funds

In March, the Town allocated $250,000 in community relief funds to help fill critical needs in the form of food, housing and business/organizational support. Our Community Relief Task Force, composed of Town staff and local nonprofit leaders, fields requests for grant funds and makes award recommendations. Yesterday, the Town awarded $25,000 to the Estes Park Housing Authority to provide direct rent relief for tenants who can demonstrate financial need. The Housing Authority will be providing an additional $25,000 in rent relief to match the Town's award. This award is in addition to $205,000 awarded in previous weeks to address critical needs associated with food insecurity, housing/shelter, and small business assistance. Learn more at www.estes.org/covid-19partners.

Recovery Team looking ahead and providing much-needed resources now

The Accelerated Recovery Team (ART) is one of four Town-led teams working on COVID-19 response and recovery. This team is focused on planning for a quick recovery after the end of physical distancing orders implemented by the State and County. The group is focused on sharing resources with each other and the business community; and strategizing specific ways to support a faster and more robust economic recovery.

Members include: Town of Estes Park, Estes Park Economic Development Corporation (EDC), Estes Chamber of Commerce, Visit Estes Park, Rocky Mountain National Park, YMCA of the Rockies and the Estes Valley Area Lodging Association. The team has so far collaborated on several initiatives to support business and economic recovery in the Estes Valley, including:

*Hosting a virtual Town Hall for business with over 150 participants. Representatives from the Town, Chamber, EDC and Larimer County Small Business Development Center and Workforce Development presented helpful resources and answered questions.

*The Town, Chamber and Estes Park Police Department are hosting a multi-week webinar series designed to provide tools for recognizing and understanding the emotional and physiological impact of the COVID-19 crisis. Each week, speakers will focus on a different topic area, all meant to support and nurture our relationships with ourselves and each other during this unprecedented event. The first webinar topic will be "Navigating the Emotional & Physical Impact of Grief" takes place April 15 at 1 p.m. Register at https://business.esteschamber.org/events/details/resources-for-healing-t...

*The EDC and Town of Estes Park are partnering to help connect businesses in need with local business advisors. Advisors can help provide guidance and support for businesses in the Estes Valley who are facing a variety of questions and/or challenges as a result of COVID-19.

*Visit Estes Park will be hosting a "communication clearinghouse" website that pulls local resources and information together in one location. The site will provide links to the latest Federal, State, County and Local public health information, information on human services (e.g., housing, food, child care, mental health), volunteer and donation opportunities, business recovery resources and more.

Emergency order extending vacation home registration timeline

The stay-at-home orders have placed a hold on code compliance inspections required for new and transferred vacation home licensees to complete their registrations. A small number (30) of current in-progress registrations or new vacation homes from the Town's waiting list are eligible to apply as others let their registrations lapse within the cap. The emergency order extends the deadline for registration completion from 90 to 180 days in order to allow inspections to occur as soon as orders are lifted. The complete orders are available at https://drive.google.com/open?id=1VO6gPuQF_-4FLSetEc-K_E-dFi2FljsM.

Help your community by making and donating fabric masks

Donation site at Town Hall

Larimer County Department of Health and Environment is collecting homemade masks for essential workers. The Town has set up a donation site at the western Town Hall entrance (vestibule entry to the Police Department, 170 MacGregor Ave.) It will be available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. More information below. Thank you for your support!

April 13 COVID-19 Updates -- Estes Park EDC and Town of Estes Park Business Advisor Program

Estes Park EDC and Town of Estes Park Business Advisor Program

The Estes Park Economic Development Corporation (Estes Park EDC) and Town of Estes Park are partnering to help connect businesses in need with local Business Advisors. Advisors can help provide guidance and support for businesses in the Estes Valley who are facing a variety of questions and/or challenges as a result of COVID-19, including:

• General leadership/business coaching

• Change management

• Operational resiliency

• Financial management

• Technology improvements

• Navigating small business loans and grants

• Marketing

Businesses of all sizes and types are welcome to participate. If you are interested in participating as a Business Advisor or Advisee, please contact Estes Park EDC President/CEO Adam Shake at ashake@estesparkedc.com

April 10 Updates

10 de abril COVID-19 actualizaciones

April 10 COVID-19 updates

Resources for Healing the Whole Person: A Self-Care Webinar Series

The Town of Estes Park, Estes Chamber of Commerce and Estes Park Police Department have partnered on a multi-week webinar series designed to provide tools for recognizing and understanding the emotional and physiological impact of the COVID-19 crisis. Each week, speakers will focus on a different topic area, all meant to support and nurture our relationships with ourselves and each other during this unprecedented event. The first webinar in the series will be held on Wednesday, April 15 from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. and the topic will be "Navigating the Emotional & Physical Impact of Grief." Information about next week's featured speakers and topic areas, as well registration details can be found at https://business.esteschamber.org/events/details/resources-for-healing-w.... Preregistration is only required to protect the privacy of the online meeting room. Anonymity is very important to event organizers so the webinar will be set up only to display the speakers and moderators. No individual registrant information will be shared. Watch for information on future webinars in this series.

Help your community by making and donating fabric masks

Donation site at Town Hall

Larimer County Department of Health and Environment is collecting homemade masks for essential workers. The Town has set up a donation site at the western Town Hall entrance (vestibule entry to the Police Department, 170 MacGregor Ave.) It will be available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. More information at https://bit.ly.larimerfacemasks. Thank you for your support!

Larimer County Department of Health & Environment seeks medical volunteers

More information at https://bit.ly.larimervolunteers

April 8 extension of the orders to close Estes Valley short-term accommodations

8 de abril Actualizaciones COVID-19

Emergency Order to extend the closure of short-term lodging through April 26

Larimer County Department of Health and Environment and the Town of Estes Park are extending the existing public health orders limiting visitors to Estes Park by closing short-term accommodations within the Estes Valley to help slow the spread of COVID-19. The orders were issued March 21 and will be extended through April 26, aligning with the current stay-at-home orders.

The age and health of a significant portion of the population in Estes Park places it at risk of serious health complications from COVID-19. Although most individuals who contract COVID-19 do not become seriously ill, people with mild symptoms and asymptomatic persons with COVID-19 may place other vulnerable members of the public at significant risk. The Larimer County Department of Health and Environment and the Town of Estes Park are limiting visitor services in the Town and discouraging visitation. The town’s hospital has also urged the Town to shut down hotels, motels, and vacation rentals to limit the number of tourists into the town. The orders from the Town and Larimer County limit accommodations in the Estes Park area. These orders went into effect on March 23 at 12 p.m. and now remain in effect through April 26, 2020. There are exceptions for local workers, long-term residents of short-term facilities, and those who are ill or quarantined.

The complete orders may be viewed at www.estes.org/covid-19 and www.larimer.org/coronavirus. The direct link to the Town’s order is https://drive.google.com/open?id=1Vi7sJimUYaELZwgBme0oH8vvf1w2QM1V.

Town Administrator Travis Machalek commented, “The health of the people in our community remains our number one priority, and these orders are still needed to get Estes Park through the pandemic. When the public health experts tell us that it’s time to begin lifting restrictions like these, we will eagerly support the reopening of our businesses and welcome guests back to the valley.”

“These actions are essential to protect the health of the people in the Estes Valley area and minimize the impacts of this pandemic locally,” says Public Health Director Tom Gonzales. “We need people who aren’t currently housed in the Estes Valley to stay where they are and not travel up there.”

You can help slow the spread of viruses by: staying home, increasing distance between people to six feet to help reduce spread, washing hands frequently with soap and water, avoiding touching your face, covering coughs and sneezes, staying home when sick, wear fabric masks when visiting essential businesses like a grocery store, and avoiding close contact with anyone who has cold or flu-like symptoms. Information about COVID-19 is constantly changing, and the public health response adjusts as more is learned about this virus. While there is plenty of news and media information available, LCDHE is encouraging Larimer County residents to view the latest credible information on COVID-19 at www.larimer.org/coronavirus or www.CDC.gov/coronavirus. Additionally, residents are encouraged to follow LCDHE’s Facebook and Twitter accounts at @LarimerHealth.

April 7 Updates including extension of Statewide Stay-at-Home orders through April 26

7 de abril COVID-19 actualizaciones

April 7 COVID-19 updates

Statewide Stay-at-Home Orders through April 26

Governor Polis has extended the statewide Stay-at-Home order through April 26: https://covid19.colorado.gov/stay-home-except-essential-needs

Enforcement

Stay-at-home orders mean you should be home as much as possible, and only leave to do a limited number of essential work/business items allowed in the orders. Estes Park Police officers are actively patrolling within the Town limits of Estes Park. If officers observe a gathering of several people, they will contact the group to see if they cohabitate, and if not, educate them on the need for physical distancing of at least six feet and the need to wear a face covering whenever possible. Our officers educate and ask for cooperation first, and then we have the option to issue a summons to repeat offenders. If you have questions or concerns about a potential violation of the Stay-at-Home order or a potential violation of the order to close short-term accommodations in the Estes Valley, please contact the Estes Park Police Department at 970-586-4000.

Community Relief Funds

The Town allocated $250,000 in community relief funds to help fill critical needs in the form of food, housing and business/organizational support. Our Community Relief Task Force, composed of Town staff and local nonprofit leaders, fields requests for grant funds and makes award recommendations. Last week, the Town awarded $28,000 to the Estes Park Nonprofit Resource Center and the American Legion to address food insecurity that many of our community members are experiencing. Earlier this week, a community relief grant was awarded to Crossroads Ministry in the amount of $27,000. These funds will be used to provide food for those in need, temporary lodging or housing assistance to prevent eviction or foreclosure, and transportation assistance. The Task Force also recommended allocating $150,000 in community relief funds for small business assistance to be provided through a joint effort between the Estes Park Economic Development Corporation and Estes Chamber of Commerce -- $100,000 will be used to provide assistance to businesses for employee retention/payroll and $50,000 will be used to provide assistance in meeting overhead obligations such as rent payments, utilities, and insurance. Additional details about how small businesses can access these funds will be forthcoming once an official award is made.

April 14 virtual Town Board meeting

The next Town Board meeting takes place April 14 at 7 p.m. The final agenda will be posted by April 8, with meeting materials posted April 10, at www.estes.org/boardsandmeetings. The electric rate hearing originally scheduled for April 14 has been postponed to June 23, tentatively. The board will meet virtually and its meeting will be streamed via www.estes.org/videos (both Viebit and YouTube options will be used for live-streaming). Since the public will not be able to attend and comment in person, public comments on agenda items are requested by noon Tuesday April 14, by using the public comment form at www.estes.org/boardsandmeeting, emailing townclerk@estes.org or by leaving a voice message at 970-577-4773 where the comments will be transcribed for the board and added to the meeting packet. The recording of this meeting will be posted within 2 business days at www.estes.org/videos.

REMINDER - Today is Municipal Election Day! Please be sure to return your voted ballots by 7 p.m. at the Town Hall drop-off location on MacGregor Ave. Unofficial results will be posted at www.estes.org/elections, as well as www.facebook.com/townofestesparkco and www.twitter.com/townofestespark, as soon as they are available tonight.

April 3 Updates including a message to part-time residents from Mayor Todd Jirsa

3 de abril COVID-19 actualizaciones

April 3 COVID-19 updates

A message to part-time residents from Mayor Todd Jirsa

One of the most difficult aspects of the current situation is that second homeowners must delay their travels to the Estes Valley until the stay-at-home orders have been lifted. Asking this of our part-time residents is one of the most difficult things we have to do - because you are a critical part of our community.

At this time, we must remind part-time residents -- those who are not in Estes Park right now, that we need you to follow the public health orders, which tell us not to travel in and out of the community for non-essential business. That includes moving from your other residence to your residence in Estes Park.

The Larimer County Public Health Director has ordered only essential travel be allowed in our community. Everyone needs to stay where they are while the stay-at-home orders are in place.

These orders help us reduce the spread of COVID-19, and preserve the limited critical resources like medical facilities and staff, and groceries, for our current population.

As we prepare to see the COVID-19 pandemic peak in Larimer County and across Colorado in the weeks to come, we cannot welcome additional people to Estes Park at this time, painful as that is for me to say. Please support Estes by standing together, apart. We look forward to enthusiastically welcoming you back to the community as soon as we can. -Mayor Todd Jirsa

If you must go out, wear a mask.

Why DIY masks? Research shows that DIY masks can help block the spread of COVID-19, especially by preventing people who are asymptomatically infected from spreading the disease unknowingly. That's why government officials including Governor Polis now recommend their widespread use.

However, given the current mask shortages impacting medical professionals, it's essential that the general public leaves the supply of N95 medical masks to healthcare workers. That's how DIY masks can help! By getting every Coloradan to wear a DIY mask, we can help protect medical professionals on the front lines, help flatten the curve-and most importantly keep each other safe.

Share. Make. Give. Wear. www.coloradomaskproject.com

Free WiFi Zones powered by Trailblazer Broadband

As our community adjusts to the impacts of staying at home, we know some have little or no internet access. The Town of Estes Park has partnered with the Estes Valley Library to remind you there is free public WiFi access in our public parking areas as shown on this map. We welcome you to utilize this access for your essential needs, at any time, while maintaining physical distancing.

Get out and vote!

The Municipal Election is just around the corner on Tuesday, April 7. We understand the challenges our community is facing right now, but please don't miss the chance to elect your next Mayor and Trustees, and vote on the sale of the fire station to the Estes Valley Fire Protection District. Ballots mailed now may not be received by Election Day, but you can easily drive up to return your ballot at the Town Hall entrance off MacGregor Avenue. Drive up, stay parked, and an election judge will help you at the curb! Do this today until 5 p.m., Monday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Tuesday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Call us at at 970-577-4777 for help. Election details at www.estes.org/elections.

Need someone to talk to?

The pandemic is stressful. Fear and anxiety can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions in adults and children. Coping with stress will make you, the people you care about, and your community stronger. Talking to someone can make all the difference. Summitstone Health, in partnership with the Health District of Northern Colorado, is able to help. If you are in crisis, please use the crisis help line at 970-494-4200 ext. 4 or text TALK to 38255 to receive mental health crisis support.

March 30 Message from Mayor Jirsa and Town Administrator Travis Machalek: Estes Park, shining light on a determined path

Estes Park, llevando luz en tiempos difíciles

Estes Park, shining light on a determined path

By Mayor Todd Jirsa and Town Administrator Travis Machalek

We’ve entered another week of uncertainty and more negativity in the news, so together we want to reach out with some thoughts to help everyone keep a positive perspective. We’re isolating ourselves for the greater good, but it’s difficult. With last week’s orders telling most of us to stay home and keep physical distance from our friends, neighbors and colleagues, it could be tempting to feel divided.

In fact, once again the amazing people of Estes Park have come together in creative ways to seek out the needs of our people and fill those needs by any means possible. Our community actually grows in times like these. We grow as individuals and we grow together.

The community is here to help... whether you’re facing loneliness from physical isolation, or you’re facing the loss of your job, or you’re facing fear or stress as an essential service or medical provider. Reach out and you will find help.

One of the best resources is the Estes Park Nonprofit Resource Center’s “Caring during COVID-19” -- a compilation of local non-profit and services for Estes Valley residents at www.epnonprofit.org. You’ll find everything from food, to counseling, to student support and mentoring. From virtual medical and dental services to enrichment programs. On top of actually helping us get through this situation, the work of these local organizations is inspiring and heartwarming. Whether or not we call on them for support, they are shining a light for all of us.

At the Town, we’re committed to keeping your utilities on -- your water flowing and your lights on. It doesn’t matter if you can’t pay your bill right now.

The Town has allocated $250,000 in community relief funds to help fill critical needs in the form of food, housing and business/organizational support. Our community relief task force fields requests for grant funds, and is composed not only of Town staff, but local nonprofit leaders who share critical insight into community needs. This weekend, we approved the first relief grant submitted by the Estes Park Nonprofit Resource Center in the amount of $28,000 to support a food distribution program by the American Legion. More information about funding eligibility and guidelines is available at www.estes.org/covid-19.

Last week, we lit the star on Prospect Mountain as a sign of hope and togetherness. Thanks to our Power & Communications staff for making that happen. If you’re out and about gathering your essentials in the evening, we hope this star brightens your path and reminds you that physical distancing does not require emotional and intellectual distancing. Please reach out -- your community is here.

March 26 COVID-19 Updates including State and County stay-at-home orders

26 de marzo actualizaciones de COVID-19

March 26 COVID-19 updates State and County stay-at-home orders and paid parking implementation postponed

Shortly after Larimer County issued a stay-at-home order yesterday, a similar order was issued statewide by Governor Polis. Both the state and county orders apply to Estes Park. The Governor's order defers to more protective orders issued by local public health authorities. Larimer County's order is more protective and detailed, and should be used for planning purposes. For more information, including a developing list of FAQs and a form to ask questions on the order, please visit the county website https://www.larimer.org/health/stay-at-home-order.

Voting is essential business! Don't delay...

Voters are asked to complete and return their Municipal Election Ballots as soon as possible. In an effort to maintain social distancing and minimize the spread of COVID-19, the Clerk's office is encouraging voters to return ballots through the mail or use the Town's drive-up ballot drop off at the main entrance to Town Hall on MacGregor Avenue, adjacent to Bond Park. The drop-off location is available through Monday, April 6, weekdays only from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Election judges will also be available 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Election Day, April 7. Please remain in your vehicle and an election judge will retrieve your ballot. Stay-at-home orders do not restrict voting or mail delivery as essential functions. More at www.estes.org/elections.

Paid parking implementation postponed, and permit update

In light of the unknown economic impact of COVID-19 on our community, the Town is postponing plans to implement seasonal, selective paid parking until 2021. Until further notice, 2019 Residential Parking Permits will remain valid for use in 2020. For anyone interested in continuing the conversation on paid parking and permits, the "Let's Talk Parking" series will continue online April 2. Visit www.estes.org/parking for more information.

Need someone to talk to?

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic is stressful for people. Fear and anxiety can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions in adults and children. Coping with stress will make you, the people you care about, and your community stronger. Talking to someone can make all the difference. Summitstone Health, in partnership with the Health District of Northern Colorado, is able to help. If you are in crisis, please use the crisis help line at 970-494-4200 ext. 4 or text TALK to 38255 to receive mental health crisis support.

March 25 COVID-19 Updates including Larimer County stay-at-home order

25 de marzo COVID-19 Actualizaciones

March 25 COVID-19 updates Larimer County has issued a stay-at-home order effective tomorrow

The order is effective March 26 at 5 p.m. through April 17. It allows residents to leave home for food and essential services, and clearly defines these services. The stay-at-home order could help dramatically decrease the length of other restrictions by slowing the spread of COVID-19. Learn more: https://www.larimer.org/health/stay-at-home-order.

"We are certain that the sooner we take these dramatic measures, the sooner we will be able to resume normal activity. But we need all residents of Larimer County to come together and do this for the sake of their friends, family and the community as a whole," said Gonzales. "Your actions at this moment will save lives and reduce the economic impact of this crisis on our community."

Town Board Appropriates $250,000 for community relief efforts during COVID-19 pandemic

At its March 24 meeting, the Town Board of Trustees appropriated $250,000 for community relief efforts. Town staff will be working with partnering agencies to determine how Town funds can best be leveraged and dispersed to meet identified needs in the community. Based on direction from the Board, efforts will be focused on needs related to food insecurity, housing, and support for local businesses and organizations. Funding decisions will be made in consultation with the Town Board.

Need someone to talk to?

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic is stressful for people. Fear and anxiety can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions in adults and children. Coping with stress will make you, the people you care about, and your community stronger. Talking to someone can make all the difference. Summitstone Health, in partnership with the Health District of Northern Colorado, is able to help. If you are in crisis, please use the crisis help line at 970-494-4200 ext. 4 or text TALK to 38255 to receive mental health crisis support.

March 24 COVID-19 Updates - Larimer County Community COVID-19 Symptoms Monitoring

Monitoreo de Síntomas de COVID-19 en la Comunidad del Condado de Larimer

Larimer County Community COVID-19 Symptoms Monitoring

We are sharing this important resource from the Larimer County Department of Health and Environment: Due to the limited availability of COVID-19 testing, we've created a COVID-19 Symptoms Monitoring Dashboard for Larimer County residents. If you've had symptoms of COVID-19 recently or are currently sick, please visit the dashboard and complete the reporting form. The public can view the collective data by symptoms onset and by location, and this gives us an additional tool to monitor the spread and impact of COVID-19 in Larimer County. Thank you! Report symptoms and view the dashboard: https://bit.ly/larimercovidsymptoms

March 23, 2020 - COVID-19 Updates including extension of town facility closure and March 24 Town Board meeting participation

COVID-19 actualizaciones operacionales del Pueblo de Estes Park

March 23 COVID-19 Updates

Town facility closures

Town facilities will remain closed to the public through April 17. The Town will reassess that date on a weekly basis. With the exception of Town Hall and Visitor Center restrooms, the Town’s public restroom facilities are now closed.

Don’t delay - vote now!

Voters are asked to complete and return their Municipal Election Ballots as soon as possible. In an effort to maintain social distancing and minimize the spread of COVID-19, the Clerk's office is encouraging voters to return ballots through the mail or use the Town’s drive-up ballot drop off at the main entrance to Town Hall on MacGregor Avenue, adjacent to Bond Park. The drop-off location will be available beginning Friday, March 20, and continue through Monday, April 6, weekdays only from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Election judges will also be available 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Election Day, April 7. Please remain in your vehicle and an election judge will retrieve your ballot. More details at www.estes.org/elections.

March 24 Town Board meeting reminder on how to participate 

The updated Town Board agenda for March 24 is available at www.estes.org/boardsandmeetings. The board will meet virtually and their meeting will be streamed at www.estes.org/videos. Since the public will not be able to attend and comment in person, public comments on agenda items are requested by noon Tuesday March 24, by emailing townclerk@estes.org or by leaving a voice message at 970-577-4773 where the comments will be transcribed for the board and added to the meeting packet. The quasi-judicial Elkhorn Lodge development plan items are expected to be postponed until such time that adequate public participation is possible. The recording of this meeting will be posted within 2 business days at www.estes.org/videos.

March 21, 2020 - COVID-19 Updates including accommodations order and March 24 Town Board meeting

March 21 COVID-19 Updates

The Town of Estes Park and Larimer County have issued orders requiring the closure of short-term accommodations in the Estes Valley effective Monday, March 23 at noon through April 17. This is in consideration of Estes Park’s unique situation as a mountain visitor destination and our resident population with a high median age. A news release and complete orders are available at www.estes.org/covid-19.

Town Administrator Travis Machalek commented on this difficult decision:

"We have seen how fast this virus can spread in resort communities throughout our state. Summit County, Gunnison County, and San Miguel County have all recognized the danger posed by large numbers of people visiting small communities during this crisis and have acted boldly to protect their communities. I believe that Emergency Order 01-20 is necessary to protect the health and safety of the residents of Estes Park.

"I issued this order, in conjunction with the Larimer County Department of Health and Environment’s order, to affirm the Town’s commitment to protecting the health and safety of our valley residents and to underscore the potential severity of the consequences of inaction. This was an incredibly difficult decision. I am fully conscious of the impacts these actions have on businesses and their employees, having seen how accommodations-initiated closures have already played out in our community. Our friends and neighbors are affected, but everyone’s health comes first.

"Our next step is responding to the impact of the virus itself and the impact of the steps we are all taking to prevent its spread. Mitigating these negative impacts on the economic well-being of our residents, our businesses, and our town will not be an easy task, but it is a critical one and we are committed to see this through. We are fortunate to have many partners in this effort, and together, we will ensure our community emerges from this challenge stronger than ever."

Mayor's request to close RMNP, and the RMNP closure

On behalf of the Town of Estes Park, yesterday Mayor Jirsa sent a letter to the Secretary of the Interior requesting the immediate closure of Rocky Mountain National Park to help reduce visitation to our area, supporting public health recommendations and helping to focus local resources on the immediate needs of our community. View the letter at www.estes.org/covid-19. The National Park later announced its closure effective March 20: www.nps.gov/romo.

March 24 Town Board meeting

The board agenda for March 24 is available at www.estes.org/boardsandmeetings. The board will meet virtually and their meeting will be streamed at www.estes.org/videos. Public comments on agenda items are requested by noon Tuesday March 24, by emailing townclerk@estes.org or by leaving a voice message at 970-577-4773 where the comments will be transcribed for the board. The quasi-judicial Elkhorn Lodge development plan items are expected to be postponed until such time that adequate public participation is possible.

Update from the Police Department

The men and women at your Estes Park Police Department are dedicated to addressing today’s unprecedented challenges with resilience and confidence. The effects of this swift-moving pandemic are wide-ranging, but our commitment to serve our community is absolute. Our professional staff members are passionate in their efforts to serve. Operational plans are reviewed and revised daily to ensure we can continue our community-oriented services and meet the needs of our community in this most trying of times. Our officers, civilian employees and administrative leaders are taking precautionary measures to stay well and healthy, with a focus on continuity of operations. Our department’s work ethic and outlook is built on the foundation of invaluable experience from previous community hardships. As fellow community members of Estes Park, we are together in this effort. We will emerge stronger. We are Mountain Strong.

Town facilities and events

Town facilities are currently closed through March 31, with a reevaluation by Friday 3/27. We expect this will be extended. Town events have been canceled through April 18.

Municipal Election reminder

Ballots for the Municipal Election, April 7, 2020 arrived this week at the Post Office in Estes Park for delivery. In an effort to maintain social distancing and minimize the spread of COVID-19, the Clerk's office is encouraging voters to return ballots through the mail or use the Town’s drive-up ballot drop off at the main entrance to Town Hall on MacGregor Avenue, adjacent to Bond Park. The drop-off location will be available beginning Friday, March 20, and continue through Monday, April 6, weekdays only from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Election judges will also be available 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Election Day, April 7. Please remain in your vehicle and an election judge will retrieve your ballot. More details at www.estes.org/elections.

March 20, 2020 - Letter from Mayor Jirsa to Department of the Interior requesting temporary closure of Rocky Mountain National Park

Letter from Mayor Jirsa to Department of the Interior requesting temporary closure of Rocky Mountain National Park

March 19, 2020 - Update - first positive case in Estes Park, Town emergency declaration and new public health orders

COVID-19 Actualizaciones del Pueblo de Estes Park

PDF: Declaration of Local Emergency - COVID-19

March 19, 2020 update - COVID-19 First positive COVID-19 case in Estes Park, new public health orders and Town operations

Estes Park now has one confirmed case of COVID-19 in a resident, as reported by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE). CDPHE has issued new public health guidelines, restricting gatherings of 10 or more people with few exceptions. Larimer County Public Health Director Tom Gonzales has recommended the Town encourage visitors not to travel to Estes Park. The Town is working with community partners to coordinate necessary messaging.

Town operations may continue as they are currently, with many staff teleworking, others working in offices and the field with social distancing measures. Facilities are closed to the public and events have been canceled through April 18, at this time. Other than Town Board meetings, all other meetings have been canceled or postponed. Social Distancing Public Health Order.

Review of the March 18 Town Board actions

At its March 18 special meeting, the Town Board met to discuss COVID-19-specific operational provisions for the municipal government. The board first received an update from the Larimer County Department of Health and Environment. Public Health Director Tom Gonzales gave an update on public health recommendations, the status of confirmed cases in Larimer County (5 cases, at the time), the considerable delay in receiving COVID-19 test results, and the benefits of proactive measures in our community.

The Board unanimously approved a policy to cover COVID-19-related leave for Town staff, to continue to encourage the use of leave and isolation to reduce the risk of spreading illness among the staff and community, as well as provisions for staff to take care of children during school and daycare closures.

Finally, the Town Board unanimously passed a resolution amending the Municipal Code to allow the Town Administrator to enact emergency declarations during situations such as COVID-19 when actions are necessary more quickly than the Town Board can gather to meet. The ordinance provides for holding emergency meetings on short-notice, for holding virtual meetings when necessary, for declaring states of emergency and disaster, and issuing emergency rules, regulations and orders. The ordinance provides certain authorities to the Town Administrator during disasters or emergencies, with checks and balances maintained by the Town Board at all times. More information is available in the Town Board packet materials at https://dms.estes.org/weblink/0/edoc/126753/PACKET%20Special%20Town%20Board%202020-03-18.pdf.

Emergency declaration

Town Administrator Machalek signed an emergency declaration for the Town of Estes Park today. In accordance with the Town Board's action March 18, this declaration allows actions by the Town Administrator in response to the emergency to manage the incident and take community mitigation measures. The declaration is available at www.estes.org/covid-19 and linked directly at https://drive.google.com/file/d/19YnnI19RZfPuSRQVww7K1RUrncRaSWKG/view.

March 24 Town Board meeting

In light of new public health orders, staff will be working with the Town Board to determine how it wants to proceed with its next meeting, March 24. More details on this meeting to come.

Community Development operations

The Estes Park Building Division will discontinue in-home inspections until further notice. Those inspections mainly include water heater, furnace, window and door inspections. A permit is still required for this type of work and permits can be applied for and paid for online. Inspections will resume when it is deemed safe for the community. Staff will continue to inspect new residential and commercial projects as long as it is safe to do so. Staff are still reviewing plans and issuing permits. As a way to provide customer-oriented alternatives for this step, staff are considering increased temporary use of contractor affidavits to fill some gaps in service. Affidavits can be emailed and thus avoid the need for social proximity. Not all construction can rely on affidavits, but this will reduce the economic impact of reduced building inspection services in the field while ensuring public health and safety per current orders and guidelines.

Chief Building Official Gary Rusu is available by email or phone. Please contact him with any questions or concerns: 970-577-3728 or grusu@estes.org.

Municipal Election reminder

Ballots for the Municipal Election, April 7, 2020 arrived today at the Post Office in Estes Park for delivery. In an effort to maintain social distancing and minimize the spread of COVID-19, the Clerk's office is encouraging voters to return ballots through the mail. The return ballots require standard postage of $0.55. The Town Clerk's office is establishing a drive-up ballot drop off at the main entrance to Town Hall on MacGregor Avenue, adjacent to Bond Park. The drop-off location will be available beginning Friday, March 20, and continue through Monday, April 6, weekdays only from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Election judges will also be available 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Election Day, April 7. Voters are asked to park in one of the designated drop-off parking spaces and an election judge will be available to accept your ballot.

The Larimer County offices on Brodie Avenue are not accepting ballots for the Town of Estes Park Municipal Election. All ballots must be received by 7 p.m. April 7, when the polls close, in order to be counted - postmarks do not count. Swearing-in of newly elected Town Trustees will be at the April 28 Town Board Meeting.

Community partner updates

The Town is establishing a repository of local partner updates and resources at www.estes.org/covid-19 and www.estes.org/covid-19partners. We will update this resource as partners provide us with new information. Currently, information is shown as provided by Safeway, Estes Park Health, Rocky Mountain National Park, the YMCA, Visit Estes Park, the Estes Park Economic Development Corporation, Estes Park Schools, Upper Thompson Sanitation, Estes Park Sanitation and Estes Valley Recreation and Park District (Community Center). We also link to the Estes Park Nonprofit Resource Center where you can learn about the services offered by nonprofits and how you can help, if you are able.

In need of food or other help?

Business closures resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic have put many of our community members out of work, at least temporarily. During this difficult and uncertain time, we wanted to ensure that residents of the Estes Valley were aware of some places they could turn to if they are finding it difficult to afford food for themselves and their families. Resources and services provided by area nonprofits during COVID-19 are available on the Estes Park Nonprofit Resource Center's website: https://www.epnonprofit.org/covid-nonprofit-resources.html

March 18, 2020 - Keeping the lights on -- A message on Town utilities from the Mayor

Manteniendo las luces encendidas: Servicios Públicos del Pueblo y COVID-19

Keeping the lights on -- Town utilities and COVID-19 A message from Mayor Todd Jirsa As we watch the world around us change and alter our daily lives to avoid an invisible threat, I want to reach out with a message of reassurance about the basics you rely on at your home and business… water, electricity and internet. I can assure you that these Town of Estes Park services will continue to serve you and your most basic needs. Water and electricity are services we often take for granted. But during uncertain times like these, you may find yourself wondering if your water or electric service will be affected. This also goes for the customers coming online with the new Trailblazer Broadband internet. We do not know yet how many people COVID-19 will directly affect in Estes Park, but we can be certain it will affect our community more than it has already. The Town of Estes Park has extensive experience maintaining its utility services during emergencies - and you have told us repeatedly that we excel here. We take great pride in that. Our Water and Power & Communications teams plan, prepare and train for continuing our operations during tough times. We’ve also taken measures to ensure your tap continues to run our high-quality drinking water, and your lights come on at the flip of a switch... Continuity of operation plans ensure we have the staff available to keep water and electricity and internet available around the clock, and that we’re able to respond quickly to your customer service needs. As we watch more and more facilities around us shut down, you can be certain that Town of Estes Park utilities will not. You should also rest assured that the Town will not disconnect any services to customers unable to pay their bills during this hardship -- commercial or residential. Our staff will assist you with a payment plan. We have tightened up our operations in many ways to mitigate the risk of spreading COVID-19. Our employees are dispersed, both in offices and in the field. Some are teleworking, others are practicing social-distancing to reduce the risk to our teams and the critical services they provide to the community. Business-related travel outside of our service areas is now prohibited. Finally, our staff is supported with paid leave to stay home if they feel ill, to ensure they don’t feel pressure to work further reducing the risk to our customers. Our team is proud to support our customer communities, and our motivation to provide the services you need is only increased during challenging times like these.

March 17, 2020 - Operational updates

COVID-19 actualizaciones operacionales del Pueblo de Estes Park

March 17 operational update - COVID-19 The Town of Estes Park strongly encourages following public health recommendations on social distancing. Don't shake hands. When possible, increase the distance between people to six feet to help reduce spread. Consider cancelling trips and not attending public gatherings. Follow CDC guidelines on travel. Larimer County has issued a public health order to cancel or postpone gatherings of 50 or more people. The county is also urging the following:

People at high-risk for severe illness from COVID-19 (aged 60 or over, those with underlying health conditions, and pregnant people) not attend events, public areas, and business locations where 10 or more people will be gathered.

Avoid all nonessential travel. Travel in and out of the community is highly discouraged.

State Order: Governor Polis has issued an order restricting the operations of restaurants, bars, gyms and theaters for the next 30 days. While we know this is an important step, we understand this will be difficult for the businesses and their employees. https://www.colorado.gov/governor/news/state-health-department-issues-public-health-order-closing-colorado-bars-restaurants-gyms?fbclid=IwAR2GESDiLIXs_qSAb937X9451hA7ToC7Z9jfXTOqehUjl6sl6uUn55z6ums

Utility bill grace period: In light of the Governor's order, the Town is working on a policy to provide assistance to commercial utility customers, ensuring no services are disconnected due to delayed payments during this hardship.

Support our local restaurants when you can! https://www.facebook.com/groups/EstesParkDelivers/

Special Town Board Meeting tomorrow: The Town Board will hold a special meeting March 18 to discuss provisions for COVID-19 Town operational issues, emergency declarations, and have a discussion on holding virtual meetings in the future. The agenda is available at www.estes.org/boardsandmeetings, and the meeting will be streamed/recorded via www.estes.org/videos. Public participation is encouraged by commenting in advance by emailing townclerk@estes.org or calling 970-577-4777. Those who choose to attend will be asked to follow social distancing guidelines in the board room.

Avoid scams: It didn't take long for bad people to leverage COVID-19 for criminal purposes. Cybersecurity researchers have identified several fake COVID-19 tracker maps that infect people's computers with malware when opened. The tactic is one of many ways hackers and scammers are capitalizing on people's fears about coronavirus to spread malware. There are reports from all over the world of increased activity of this nature, all under the disguise of COVID-19 information.

Electric rate hearing postponed: The electric rate hearing is tentatively rescheduled to June 23, pending board action. Background and updates at www.estes.org/electricrates.

Applications to Community Development: Department staff will be available by advance appointment Wednesday, March 18 from 4 to 5 p.m. at the Estes Park Events Complex, with special provisions for social distancing, to accept applications and payment for the next submittal cycle. Please email planning@estes.org or call 970-577-3721 in advance to schedule a few minutes with Community Development staff during this time frame.

March 16, 2020 - Operational updates and Town facility closures

COVID-19 operational updates from the Town of Estes Park

According to public health officials in Larimer County, there are still no documented cases of COVID-19 in Estes Park at this time. However, we understand that testing facilities are operating on delays and we must be proactive in doing our part to help limit the spread of COVID-19 to help protect our staff and our community. Our primary goals are to support the public health and welfare while keeping our staff well and maintaining our ability to continue providing our municipal services to the community.

The Town will close all of its facilities to the public beginning March 17 to continue through March 31, with reevaluation to occur by March 27. Access to Town-operated public restroom facilities will remain open with enhanced cleaning practices. Town staff will continue working in their offices or in the field, or by teleworking, practicing social distancing measures and assisting the public via phone and email. Our goal is to maintain town services as much as possible.  Closures include Town Hall, the Estes Park Visitor Center, the Estes Park Museum and the Estes Park Events Complex. Cancellations for the Events Complex are extended through April 18, to include cancellation of Bigfoot Days (April 18). Please contact these departments directly if you need to reschedule a meeting or event: www.estes.org/staff-directory

The Town is currently evaluating options to hold the Town Board meetings virtually and at this time, the meetings are still scheduled with current information available at www.estes.org/boardsandmeetings. The Town Board will also hold a special meeting March 18 to discuss COVID-19 related business to ensure the Town can continue municipal services during the pandemic. Advance public input on the Town Board meeting is encouraged via email to townclerk@estes.org. Meetings are streamed and recorded via www.estes.org/videos. The Estes Valley Planning Commission meeting March 17 has been canceled.

Ballots are being mailed this week, as scheduled, for the Municipal Election.  Voters are strongly encouraged to vote by mail.  The Town is also making special provisions to accommodate an outdoor ballot drop-off on MacGregor Avenue in front of the main entrance to Town Hall. More details to come.

The Town of Estes Park is not a public health agency and therefore will not be providing original information on the COVID-19 pandemic and its effects in our community. Our goal is to connect the public with the experts in this area. We strongly encourage the community to follow these agencies’ updates and public health guidelines, including washing hands frequently, staying home if you’re sick, and social-distancing (maintaining at least 6’ of separation from others) in all situations. We especially encourage high-risk individuals to diligently follow tailored guidelines to mitigate their risk of getting sick.

a.       CDC: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html

b.       Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment: https://www.colorado.gov/pacific/cdphe/2019-novel-coronavirus

c.       Larimer County Department of Health and Environment: https://www.larimer.org/health/communicable-disease/coronavirus-covid-19

We urge visitors and prospective visitors to follow the advice of the CDC, State and County Health departments in limiting travel to help reduce spread of the virus. Businesses in Estes Park may have varied operations, so please check with individual businesses on their operational status.

March 13, 2020 - Message from the Mayor

Una actualización a la comunidad del alcalde de Estes Park, Todd Jirsa

An update to the community from Estes Park Mayor Todd Jirsa

COVID-19 operational precautions at the Town of Estes Park

As we all watch the COVID-19 situation unfold across the world and now, in our own county, I wanted to reach out to provide some updates and encouragement on behalf of the Town government. It helps me rest easy to know that so many community partners are once again pulling together to face adversity. It's something we can count on. I hope this helps you rest easier, too. We don't want to contribute to the sense of panic that we're seeing in some places, and we want to see our community continue to flourish while taking some precautions. In fact, the Town is taking some precautions that we want to share with you now...

Our goal at the Town of Estes Park is to continue to serve the community with critical municipal services while doing our part to ensure the health of our fellow community members and visitors. No town services are adversely affected by COVID-19 at this time, and we hope to keep it that way. We have been carefully monitoring this rapidly-evolving situation and listening to the expert advice of our public health partners.

Based on current public health recommendations for social-distancing measures to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, the Town of Estes Park has elected to cancel all non-critical public meetings, programs and facility rentals at public-facing Town facilities through April 13. Facilities included are Town Hall, the Estes Park Events Complex, Estes Park Visitor Center and Estes Park Museum. Cancellations include Town Board study sessions, advisory boards and educational programs. Staff are making every effort to notify affected groups, and groups are encouraged to contact their normal staff liaisons with any questions. Decision-making meetings such as those of Town Board and Planning Commission have not been canceled at this time.

Town facilities remain open with normal operating hours at this time. The organization has taken extra measures to ensure our facilities are cleaned, our employees are following public health cleanliness guidelines, and our employees do not feel any pressure to come to work if they are sick. A decision whether or not to close any Town facilities would come after recommendations from public health officials. We appreciate your patience as we make necessary operational adaptations.

Customers in need of Town services are asked to contact staff via phone and email when possible. We ask that you do not come to Town Hall or other Town-operated facilities unless it is necessary, and please refrain from doing so if you are feeling ill. We encourage voters to return their completed Municipal Election ballots via mail, and conduct other town business online or over the phone when possible.

Town business travel is now restricted, to exclude any out-of-state travel or travel to the Denver metro area.

These new operational provisions are intended to help reduce community anxiety around the spread of COVID-19 and ensure we are doing everything we can to help. You can count on us to provide further updates on Town operations as this situation develops. We're in this together.

-- Mayor Todd Jirsa

March 12, 2020 - COVID-19 Update

Consideraciones COVID-19 del Pueblo de Estes Park

At the time of this update, public health officials have indicated there are no documented cases of confirmed COVID-19 in Estes Park. If COVID-19 cases occur in Estes Park, the Town of Estes Park will consider the guidance of public health officials in making operational decisions that affect our services, meetings and facilities. The Town will also consider the needs and concerns of the community. Town Administrator Travis Machalek noted, "The Town will strive to balance health and safety needs with the need to continue providing our services to the community." He continued, "We have trained and prepared for continuing municipal operations to serve our community in events such as this. As we receive public health recommendations, we will support our staff in encouraging any necessary social distancing, teleworking and other measures to meet this potential need." The Town is actively working to promote the messages of official public health agencies in our facilities and among staff and customers to help mitigate the spread of germs. In public facilities, the Town has increased the level of cleaning services, to include extra attention to disinfecting of shared surfaces.

 

Public Health Resources

The Town encourages the community to follow these agencies' updates on COVID-19 and guidelines for public health, including washing hands frequently and staying home when sick. The Town especially encourages high-risk individuals (including individuals over 60 years of age and those with chronic health conditions) to diligently follow guidelines to mitigate the risk of becoming ill.

-Call the Joint Information Center : 970-498-5500 (Monday - Friday, 9:00 am - 4:30 pm)

-Text questions: 970-999-1770 (Staff try to respond within 4 hours during the day)