Ear to the ground

“Earn your turns? I work for a paycheck and buy a ski pass. I think that qualifies.”

– A Durango man shortly after kicking down for an earlybird Purg pass

Spring Tonic

Durango celebrates 77 years of sobriety-free living next week.  The Durango Bootlegger’s Society (Carver Brewing, Ska Brewing, Steamworks and Durango Brewing) brings the SpeakEasy Tapping Party back to Carvers on April 7. The event commemorating the 77th anniversary of Prohibition’s end begins at 6 p.m.

Carvers is stepping back in time to Prohibition-era Durango. The brew pub will feature a speakeasy door with door guys clad in 1930s clothing, Women’s Temperance activists will protest out front. The bootleggers will also be cracking out nature’s own medicine – the 8th annual Spring Tonic Elixir, a collectively-brewed dark lager based on a “medicinal” prohibition-era recipe.  

“American Brew,” an acclaimed documentary of American beer heritage, will show at 6 p.m. Local historian Duane Smith, will entertain the crowd with colorful anecdotes of local brewing history before tapping the ceremonial cask of Elixir. Immediately following the tapping, the bluegrass band Waiting on Trial will perform. The event is free and a portion of the proceeds from the evening’s sales of Spring Tonic Elixir will go to the Animas City Museum.   

Mixed martial attitude

Durango got a little time in the lemonlight this week. The premiere episode of the 11th season of “The Ultimate Fighter” aired on March 31 on Spike. The show featured Durango ex-pat Chris Camozzi as one of 28 mixed martial artists competing for a chance to go big in the Ultimate Fighting Championships.

The 23-year-old middleweight is back in his native Lakewood, Colo. and currently 12-3 as an “ultimate fighter.” During a recent interview, Camozzi discussed a falling out with La Plata County.

“Honestly, school (at Fort Lewis College) just wasn’t my thing. I enjoy learning new things but at the time I was in college I had no idea what I wanted to study. I was young and nothing really interested me. The rugby season ended and I decided I would move home. Durango wasn’t a very interesting place either.”

Locals can follow Camozzi’s quest for KOs and a more interesting place everyWednesday at 8 p.m.