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Opinion / Editorial


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  • Growing pains

    May 2, 2024

    Some of us in the community as children growing up in Thermopolis dreamed of having a McDonald’s restaurant in town. Years later, we got one – and a Pizza Hut restaurant as well. Some grew up hoping for even more, a shopping mall, a cold water swimming pool, a stoplight at Amoretti and Sixth Streets. We never got those. According to the US Census, In 1983, Thermopolis and East Thermopolis’ population was about 4,410 people and we had the infrastructure to handle that amount at the time. Today Thermopolis population is 2,702. Hard numbers to sw...

  • Read the public notices

    Apr 25, 2024

    This Thermopolis Independent Record contains two and a half pages of public notices. We suggest you read them. Included on those pages are notices about another request from Rocky Mountain Power for a rate increase, an invitation to bid, board vacancies, notices of Sheriff sales, commissioner and council minutes and more. These are required to run by state statute and there is a good reason for that. The information included in these notices must be accessible to the public for a variety of reasons. One of the most important is that our city...

  • When is enough, enough?

    Apr 18, 2024

    by Rhett Breedlove, Torrington Telegram This perhaps is something everyone can relate to, and it falls under all sorts of categories. It’s in our nature to continue to try over, and over again until we finally succeed. Or at least until we get something right. This is the absolute truth if we ever plan to get anywhere in life, and as we all know very well by now nothing worth having is going to come easy. When we were young we were rightfully taught if at first you don’t succeed, you must try, try again. Absolutely. None of us ever became good...

  • Bad behavior by one not condoned by other Wyomingites

    Apr 11, 2024

    by Lara Love A photo being circulated of a wolf with red tape wrapped around its muzzle posed next to Daniel, Wyo. resident Cody Roberts, has people across Wyoming and the nation sickened by the man’s actions, myself included. The man reportedly ran the wolf down with a snowmobile on the last day of February. He did not kill the wolf. Instead he kept the wolf, bringing it into the Green River Bar in Daniel on March 1, before later killing the wolf behind the building. The Wyoming Game and Fish fined Roberts $250 for possessing a live wolf. T...

  • Easter egg hunt rescheduled for this Sunday

    Apr 4, 2024

    The annual Lion’s Club Easter Egg Hunt has been rescheduled for this Sunday, April 7 at 2 p.m. in Hot Springs State Park. Last Sunday’s weather was not favorable for the event. At press time, the forecast for the weekend is for moisture both days. We are hopeful that for a few hours on Sunday we will get a window of relief from the rain so the annual event can be held. A local Lion’s Club representative said that they believe it has only be three times that the event had to be canceled or rescheduled due to weather. They also said if there is i...

  • Transparency at work in School District 2

    Mar 28, 2024

    by David Peck, Lovell Chronicle, via WNE Newspapers from coast to coast a few weeks ago celebrated Sunshine Week, a time to champion openness and transparency in government in issues from access to public records to open meetings. Ironically, Sunshine Week 2024 happened to coincide with an example of transparency worth celebrating in Lovell. Thursday night, Big Horn County School District No. 2 held a public forum during which citizens were able to question three finalists to be the next principal of Lovell Elementary School. We’re not sure m...

  • Spring burn planned

    Mar 21, 2024

    In cooperation with Hot City Outdoor Alliance and the Thermopolis Fire Department, the Wyoming Game and Fish Department is planning a prescribed burn at the Wedding of the Waters Public Access Area near Thermopolis later this week. On the morning of March 21, crews plan to burn one half acre of phragmites, an invasive perennial reed grass, along the shoreline of the Bighorn River, upstream and downstream of the boat ramp. Ignition is tentatively planned for 10 a.m. The prescribed burn is weather dependent. Sportspersons should be aware that acc...

  • Freedom of information

    Mar 14, 2024

    During National Sunshine Week, we celebrate freedom of information (FOI) laws and efforts to use and ensure the effectiveness of those laws to get the information we need as self-governing citizens. Over a century ago, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis, stated that “Sunlight is said to be the best of disinfectants.” The Florida Society of Newspaper Editors launched Sunshine Sunday in 2002 in response to efforts by some Florida legislators to create scores of new exemptions to the state’s public records law. It was decided that the i...

  • Check of counterfeits

    Mar 7, 2024

    by Zac Taylor, Powell Tribune A $100 bill remains an extraordinary piece of currency to hold. Even in an age of inflation, a Benjamin still represents some serious dough. These days, the bill is also a veritable work of art, with various designs, a hologram and textures. Those are there, of course, to make it hard for counterfeiters to work, but it seems locally a few have gotten through to local businesses. The Powell Police Department has reported three instances of counterfeit $100 bills ending up in the hands of tellers who spotted the...

  • Leaping into March

    Feb 29, 2024

    The Independent Record staff is providing you with five papers in February this year. Leap year occurs every four years with Feb. 29 being designated as Leap Day. For us to print five papers in February, the 1st and the 29th had to fall on a Thursday, which is very rare. But what is a leap year? According to NASA, although our calendars usually consist of 365 days, it actually takes approximately 365.2422 days for Earth to orbit the sun. Research indicates that in 45 B.C., Roman emperor Julius Caesar, with the help of astronomer Sosigenes,...

  • Legislature in full swing

    Feb 22, 2024

    Cheyenne is around a five hour drive from Thermopolis, but the work of our state’s legislature will affect us in Hot Springs County as well as every county around the state. There are a number of important issues facing Wyoming and our Legislatures. Property taxes, voting regulations and foreign ownership of Wyoming land are just a few of the topics that are keeping us all interested as they move through the process. As a reminder, the Wyoming Legislature’s website can be used to track legislation and participate in policymaking during the 202...

  • Legislature convenes

    Feb 15, 2024

    The 67th Wyoming Legislature convened in a joint session of the Wyoming Senate and House of Representatives on Monday, Feb. 12, during the first day of legislative proceedings of the 2024 Budget Session. Gov. Mark Gordon delivered his State of the State address, followed by the State of the Judiciary address, delivered by Wyoming Supreme Court Chief Justice Kate M. Fox. We encourage you to use the Wyoming Legislature’s website to track legislation and participate in policymaking during the 2024 Budget Session. The web address is www.wyoleg.gov...

  • Taking steps toward democracy

    Feb 8, 2024

    by Kimball Shinkoskey, Cody Enterprise I think most people would agree that democracy is under threat by forces on the left or on the right, or in the middle, or in a neighboring state or in our own state, or in the schools, or under the bed maybe or in the sky. Somewhere, somehow, forces either organized or just naturally occurring are stealing away what our ancestors had that made this country great. So, what would a pro-democracy movement look like in the United States, or in your state or town? I think it would be something very humble and...

  • Newspapers remain a key record for government notices

    Feb 1, 2024

    Everyday, as I walk from the editorial department in the back of the office to the breakroom to get coffee or tea, I pass by wall shelving holding bound copies of every edition of the paper down to the early days, more than 100 years ago. It’s a repository of information on the community, from notes on high school grads now serving in one of the century’s big wars, how the local high school teams performed, what new policies the city council or school board were enacting. It’s also a repository of information from local governments, from count...

  • Do you have grit?

    Jan 25, 2024

    In psychologist Angela Duckworth’s New York Times bestseller “Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance”, she shares her insight on the ability to achieve. Duckworth shows us that it is not talent or gifting that gets us to the places we want to be, but our own willpower and desire to succeed. In fact, those who have “natural” skills end up giving up or quitting far faster than someone who has a deep passion for what they are doing. In other words, someone who has grit. Yet, one of the key dynamics for an individual or an organizat...

  • Group criticizes HSCSD#1 Board of Trustees

    Jan 18, 2024

    by Lara Love A controversial cartoon that takes a jab at the Hot Springs County School District Board of Trustees is making the rounds on social media. The cartoon criticizes the board for “squashing public comment” and accuses that “some parent groups may be banned from having a voice.” There are numerous comments on the original post that also calls some of the board members out by name. A current school board member even chimes with several comments. While we don’t typically point out controversies running around on social medial, we found...

  • Shop local all year long to see our community survive

    Jan 11, 2024

    Shop local is common phrase used in the month of December, but we want to remind you it is an admirable thing to do year around. Our community was able to welcome some new businesses to Thermopolis in 2023 and we hope the same will be true in 2024. We also have some established businesses add new goods, services and attractions. Some businesses were relocated to new, better locations and some saw name or ownership changes. The current population of Thermopolis is just over 2,700 people and our county population comes in at just under 5,000. We...

  • Making resolutions beyond ourselves

    Jan 4, 2024

    We all know the deal with New Year’s resolutions. They’re often made and seldom kept. At minimum, they’re optimistic. At maximum, they’re impossible. The best kept ones are internalized while the least successful are too often spoken out of existence. For many, they’re long shots. Yet for some reason, when the winter days draw short and the nights turn cold, we reflect back and project forward. The resolutions we make show characteristics of the versions of ourselves we most want to be. If they help you inch even a smidge closer to becoming...

  • 100 years ago: Historical events from January

    Dec 28, 2023

    The month of January has been home to many historical events over the years. Here’s a look at some that helped to shape the world in January 1924. · Millionaire oil broker Courtland S. Dines is shot in the abdomen at his home on January 1. When police arrived on the scene, they found alcohol on the premises, causing a scandal during the Prohibition era. · Flooding causes the water level of the Seine to rise in Paris, forcing the closure of railway stations on January 2. · The exiled King Ferdinand is granted permission to return to Sofia by t...

  • Waiting until the last minute

    Dec 21, 2023

    It’s unlikely that anyone hopes to be a last-minute Christmas shopper. Putting off shopping until the last minute can make for a stressful home stretch to the season, and there’s no guarantee store shelves won’t already be picked clean. As for ordering something that you cannot find locally, good luck getting it delivered on time. Despite how unappealing last-minute shopping can be, it’s still a fact of life for many of us. Don’t let the stress of finding that perfect last minute gift take over the enjoyment of the Christmas season. Remember...

  • Let us know

    Dec 14, 2023

    Community events abound during the month of December as explained on page 3 of this paper. Winter sports for high school athletes have kicked off and the speech and debate season is in full swing. Between the Chamber of Commerce event calendar and the school district calendar, we are able to keep up on most of the scheduled events in our community. However, things do fall through the cracks. This time of year, and all year long, we ask organizers to let us know about their events so we can let the public know and put it on our schedule for...

  • A sign of the times for journalism and AI

    Dec 7, 2023

    by Jake Goodrick, Gillette News Record What does a media brouhaha involving Sports Illustrated have to do with the future of the industry at large? Hopefully not much. Unfortunately, it just may foreshadow the future ways, and flaws, of a media landscape shifting away from traditional values of trust, transparency and even truth, in the age of artificial intelligence. There’s a persuasive body of evidence to suggest that under the banner of Sports Illustrated — the once vaunted national outlet — a number of online product-review pieces were pub...

  • Shop local

    Nov 30, 2023

    Last weekend kicked off the Christmas season with Black Friday and Small Business Saturday. We want to remind you of the importance of shopping local throughout the entire shopping season. Local businesses have invested in our community. They support our youth, our organizations and our fundraisers. Without your support of them, that cannot continue. Our local businesses pay local employees so when you buy local you are keeping jobs for you and your community members. You may have to shop out of town for a few items on your list, but we...

  • Giving thanks

    Nov 23, 2023

    Thanksgiving day is about more than getting together to eat too much and watch parades, movies and football all day. As you gather together with friends and family, what are you giving thanks for? What you give thanks for is not as important as is the basic concept of being thankful. The history of Thanksgiving is not without controversy, but it is indeed a national holiday celebrated in the United States on the fourth Thursday in November. As the cartoon to the right reminds us, there is always plenty to not be thankful for. This year,...

  • Kudos to Wyoming Disabled Hunters volunteers

    Nov 16, 2023

    by Zac Taylor, Powell Tribune As my dad and I walked through the woods with my son a couple of weeks ago trying to get my son his first deer, we reminisced as to when I started hunting. My dad had stopped big game hunting before I was born, but when I was 8 years old or so he gave me a single shot, 20 gauge and had me practice trap shooting while he hunted pheasants in Colorado. I even got to walk along and take care of the dogs. We couldn’t remember exactly, but I think my first real hunting (besides possibly taking out a squirrel in a tree w...

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