Restoring An Overland Stage Station

Published by: David Sneed, Wheels That Won The West® Archives, LLC
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We recently received a press release from the Virginia Dale Community Club located near the Wyoming state line in north central Colorado. The group is restoring a rare, surviving stage coach station and they have an Open House fund raiser coming up in June. Below is more information on their activities.

Restoration begun on 1862 Virginia Dale Overland StageStation
Open House June 7-8, 2013

Restoration of the VirginiaDaleStage Station, the only remaining Overland StageStation still standing in its original location startedonApril 1, 2013. Under thedirection of restoration expert Bill Bailey of Historical Associates, Inc. and Paul Matosky, FieldEngineer, the Stage Station will bestabilized and restored back to its 1862 origins.

Thenow151year old StageStation was built by the notoriousJack Slade and is designated aNational Historic Site. It was an overnight station for the Overland Stage, apony express stop and hasbeen in continual use by the Virginia Dale ranching residents, families and friendsas their Community Center.

TheStage Station, located four miles south of the Wyoming border on U.S. Hwy 287, was recently straightened and inspected for needed repairs before undergoing thecomplete restoration. Due tovolunteer labor, in-kind and monetary donations, and the generosity of the American Society of Civil Engineers( who chosetheStage Station as itsCommunity Service Project for 2012), the original $326,000 restoration estimate has dropped to $135,000.

Each year the VirginiaDaleCommunity Club, whose membersown the Stage Station and the adjoining Hurzeler house(1909), haveanOpen HousetocelebratetheStageStation'shistorical significance, therural way of life and to raise funds for therestoration and maintenanceofthe Stage Station so that many moregenerations can enjoy itsunique heritage. Admission isfree and allproceeds go towardstherestoration and maintenanceofthe Stage Station.

Thisyear'sOpen Housewill be held Friday, June 7 and Saturday June8. The theme will be AbeLincoln and theCivil War.  Thelocal popular bandBarely Gettin' Bywill kick-off theweekend with a western dance from 7-11pmon Friday at theStageStation and an old-fashioned pieauction will be held atintermission.  Saturday, June8,9am to 4pm will be theannual quilt raffle, craft show, and bakesale.

Speakersfor this year include Bruce Spear as Abe Lincoln,Joan Day as VirginiaSlade, Eva SueLittleton asLady Moon, Wayne (Mr. History Ft. Collins) Sundberg, National Freight Wagon & Stagecoach Association, Oregon California Trails Association, American Tapestry AcappellaChoir, Stephen Hyatt ( Civil War expert) Rocky Mountain High School bivouacre-enactors, Susan &DuaneKniebes(Graves of Virginia Dale) and Dick Hart cowboypoet.

Local artisans will also offer their talents. There will befood, games for all ages, animals, spinning demonstrationsbyEsther Nance-Beck, Kaye Collins and Helen Hart, silent auction, aGeneral Store and the Model A Ford Club. The club will begin filling its timecapsule with memories.

The VirginiaDaleStage Station is located 4 milessouth of the Wyoming border on US Hwy 287. Turn onto County Rd. 43F at the memorial plaque placed by the Daughters of the American Revolution. The Stage Station is1 mile down theroad.

Visit us on our website orcall SylviaGarafalo 970-495-1828 or Marcie Wells 970-568-7646.

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