Different weekends for Founders’ Day, Cemetery Crawl

       After three years of scheduling the Cemetery Crawl on the same weekend as Founders' Day, the Old Colorado City Historical Society (OCCHS) has separated the two annual events this year.
       The Crawl will be Sunday, Aug. 23 (from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in Fairview Cemetery), while Founders' Day was Aug. 8.
       A bigger Founders' Day this year -it being the 150th anniversary of Colorado City's beginning - played a part. “We decided it was too much” to have them both on the same weekend, explained Bev Disch, who is the OCCHS' lead organizer of the Crawl.
       A fundraiser for the society, the event tells the stories of eight early residents who are buried at Fairview, through actors in costume who station themselves at the appropriate gravestones.
       Tickets are $7 ($9 at the gate). To buy advance tickets, go to the History Center, 1 S. 24th St., or purchase online at history.oldcolo.com.
       There are four changes in this year's lineup, with perhaps the most notable that Rebecca Clark will reprise a role she originated in the Cemetery Crawl - that of Laura Belle, the notorious Colorado City madam who was also known for her generosity. The part has been played for the past several years by her daughter Jennifer, but she had a baby this year and decided it was too much, Clark explained.
       Another change in a familiar Crawl character will have Steve Lebel playing 19th century Colorado City mayor and city attorney Oliver Ingraham.
       There also will be two new characters this year - Mrs. Lou Ross and lady of the night Blanche Burton. Portrayed by Suzanne Schorsch, Ross was the mother of a boy who died in a drowning accident at the age of 13 in 1904.
       Sharon Swint, who played early pioneer Hattie Trout last year, will switch this year to Burton. “Instead of a nice old lady, I'll be a loose old lady,” she quipped.
       Characters who will be “brought back to life” by the same actors as last year will be Katherine Lamont (Kathy McBride), wife of a fire-eating preacher; Dr. Isaac Winternitz (Phil McDonald), an early doctor; Anthony Bott (Paul Shepard), a founder and leader of Colorado City; and Jacob Schmidt (Dave Hughes), a turn-of-the- 19th-century bar owner.
       For more information, call the OCCHS at 636-1225.

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