ARCHIVED  November 1, 1996

Eaton’s what towns should be

Step back in time to a quieter era

Sometimes you get it right.
It’s been almost a month now since my wife, kids, dog and I guided the movers from our rental in Loveland to our 104-year-old Victorian home in Eaton.
For those of you who have never ventured east of Interstate 25 except in an airplane, Eaton is about 20 miles east of Fort Collins and just a quick jaunt north of Greeley. It’s an old agricultural community, one that you’re liable to breeze through along U.S. Highway 85 (until the Eaton cop catches you past the Agland convenience store).
Once that happens, you’ll drive more slowly through Eaton in the future. And if you do so, you’d better watch out, because its charms will become readily apparent.
If you ever choose to venture one block west of 85, you’ll find yourself in as beautiful a little town as you can imagine. Tree-lined streets, old homes dripping with charm from every corner of gingerbread and a downtown that actually has what it’s supposed to: a market, drug store, barber, banks, lawyers, town hall, post office, etc. It’s the type of community that isn’t supposed to exist anymore.
It’s the sort of town where the bank tellers still stand behind iron bars, where a siren summons the volunteer fire department, where the market isn’t open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, where the banker still accepts a saddle as collateral, and where strangers stop you at the gas station, inquiring as to whether the town has an ATM. (It does.)
It’s the sort of town where the newspaper, The North Weld Herald, still reports on so-and-so visiting so-and-so. It’s the kind of town where the owner of the bank – both banks – has flowers waiting for you as you move in to your home. And it’s the kind of town where the plumber you need so desperately lives two houses down.
And it’s the sort of town where a waitress, after you’ve told her which house you’ve purchased, responds with a knowing “ohhhh.”
We love it. We love living one block from the post office, two blocks from the library, two blocks from all of downtown’s amenities, and two blocks from the train tracks, from which regular whistles summon my children, 3-year-old Tommy and 1-year-old Catherine, as quickly as will the recess bell in a few years.
Every morning, I take one of two routes into work. I’ll either drive four miles north on 85 to Ault, then cut west on Colorado Highway 14, or I’ll take a county road through Severance and on into Fort Collins.
I must say, I prefer the Severance route. Winding roads, lakes, fields, beautiful homes. It’s the perfect way either to prepare for the traffic of Fort Collins or to unwind from it. On that route, I actually drive the speed limit; it seems almost pagan to rush.
I think I’ll be slowing down a lot more now.n n nElection seasons naturally are studies in contrasts, so it should come as no surprise that this Nov. 5 is no different.
On the one hand, Larimer County voters will decide on an issue that could make a positive statement for this community for years to come (see related editorial). On the other, a statewide initiative could severely destroy a large segment of our population, namely the nonprofit sector.
Amendment 11 would remove the property-tax exemption now enjoyed by churches and other nonprofits, most of which contribute incalculable benefits to our society by caring for the indigent, aiding worthy causes and attempting so ease society’s burden.
To force nonprofits to pay property taxes is a mean-spirited attack that should be repulsed.
Vote NO on Amendment 11.n n nThe Business Report is moving, but not far. We’re going from what is essentially the attic of the One West Art Center at 201 S. College Ave. in Fort Collins to the basement, or, as we call it, the garden level.
We’re renovating the space, which will afford us an entrance off of Oak Street Plaza, better visibility and expansion potential. Drop by anytime to say hi.Christopher Wood can be reached at (970) 221-5400, 356-1683 (800) 440-3506, or via e-mail at ncbr@aol.com.ÿ

Step back in time to a quieter era

Sometimes you get it right.
It’s been almost a month now since my wife, kids, dog and I guided the movers from our rental in Loveland to our 104-year-old Victorian home in Eaton.
For those of you who have never ventured east of Interstate 25 except in an airplane, Eaton is about 20 miles east of Fort Collins and just a quick jaunt north of Greeley. It’s an old agricultural community, one that you’re liable to breeze through along U.S. Highway 85 (until the Eaton cop catches you past the Agland convenience store).

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