City Parks director looks ahead (way ahead) at Red Rock Canyon dedication

       For the dedication of Red Rock Canyon Open Space, Paul Butcher “didn't want to do another ribbon-cutting.” So, instead of feeling like he was wasting time at the July 16 event, the director of City Parks decided to spice it up with a time capsule. Brian Shelton belays for Major Christopher Wendland Steve
Wood of the Fort Carson 7th Infantry Division as part of the rock-climbing demonstration
       To the intrigue of an assemblage of nearly 300 people, for whom Butcher was the last of nine speakers, he unveiled two large metal boxes (one to be protected inside the other) and a plan to insert memorabilia that will be dug up at Red Rock in 100 years.
       Butcher's dramatics involved help from Mayor Lionel Rivera and the twin sons (Collin and Hunter, 9) of Parks employee Kim King, followed by a Colorado Springs police officer driving off with the secret coordinates that tell where on the property the time capsule will be buried.
       The public is being asked to participate by submitting suggestions for items to put in the 8-cubic-foot capsule. If a person wants to donate a suggested item, that should also be noted, Butcher said.
       A deadline of July 31 for submission ideas has been set. For more information, call King at 385-6509 or e-mail her at
       Some ideas so far, according to Caitlin Green of the city's Public Communications, are an autographed photograph of the Colorado College 2004-05 hockey team, pictures and drawings of the Colorado landscape, a map of Red Rock Canyon, a CD with photos from the dedication and something from Fort Carson to honor the troops in Iraq.
       The dedication also included guided hikes, food, rock-climbing demonstrations and a blues band. The city purchased the ruggedly scenic 788.1-acre property off Westside Highway 24 in 2003 and opened it to the public last October.
       In his talk, Rivera stressed that even though the park is a “magnificent” part of the Westside, it belongs to the whole city. “A lot of Eastsiders don't even know about it,” he commented afterward. “And their taxes helped pay for it. We need to get the word out.”
       In light of Butcher's care to keep the capsule's location on the property a secret (the coordinates are to be kept in a vault at U.S. Bank), he was asked afterward what would happen to the backhoe operator who digs the hole for the capsule. In response, Butcher recalled that when an Egyptian pharoah was buried, “everyone else went with him.” Then he laughed and said, “Obviously there are some folks who will know. We're just trying to avoid treasure hunting, with people digging in the park.”
       Such digging would be fairly pointless, he noted, considering that wherever the capsule is buried, it will be eight feet deep and covered with about three tons of concrete.

Westside Pioneer article