The Grand Junction branch of Cherry Creek Mortgage Co. has donated $1,000 to the Grand Junction Fire Department in response to the Pine Gulch Fire.

According to a news release, the donation will benefit the Grand Junction Fire Training Center and will help purchase a training prop that allows firefighters to safely practice a dangerous ventilation tactic in a controlled and safe setting, the release said.

The new training facility will provide a setting for Mesa County firefighters to build key foundational skills.

“We’re so humbled and grateful for this donation from Cherry Creek Mortgage,” said Grand Junction Fire Chief Kenneth Watkins in the news release.

“Now more than ever, we understand what a risk fires pose in our community, and this donation allows our crews to safely train for high-risk situations.”

Foundation accepts grant applications

The Bray Cares Foundation has opened a 2020 grant opportunity for organizations working to address housing-related needs in Mesa County.

The Bray Cares Foundation partners with the Western Colorado Community Foundation to raise funds and makes grants annually to address this need. The application process opens Tuesday, and the deadline to apply is 5 p.m. Oct. 12.

Grant funding will target projects that provide emergency shelter and rent assistance, offer affordable housing and housing for those dealing with special needs, and those that focus on helping seniors and veterans stay in their homes.

Grant awards will range from $500–$5,000 and eligible organizations must be a 501(c)(3), or other qualified tax-exempt, charitable entity.

Go to for information and to apply.

Palisade surprises teacher with e-bike

Palisade Chamber of Commerce and a group of Palisade business leaders surprised Taylor Elementary School teacher Jennifer Steele with a peach-colored e-Bike on Wednesday, in the effort to show its “appreciation to all teachers and students as they launch, via many ways, the 2020-2021 school year.”

According to a news release, Steele is starting her 2lst year of teaching physical education at Taylor Elementary.

“This year she has 500 students and makes sure she knows all 500 by name, showing her love and dedication to her chosen profession,” the release said.

Steele and her husband, Patrick, also a teacher, help with concession stands for school sporting events and help with many other school activities.

“She also volunteers for many chamber and community events, including the Palisade Chamber’s Feast in the Fields Dinners, held each year in beautiful settings in the Peach Orchards. She loves doing all kinds of outdoor activities with her family,” the release said.

The release also credits Rapid Creek Cycles, Nana’s — Downtown, 357 Bar & Grill, The Wildflower Floral, Hummel Real Estate, and Fruit & Wine Real Estate, “for working together to surprise one of our valley educators.”

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