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Today's post will be somewhat of a Public Service Announcement. About fires. Specifically wildfires. If you follow me on Twitter, you've seen my pleas for my followers to keep the people and animals affected by the Waldo Canyon Fire in their thoughts and prayers. Since Saturday this wildfire had been threatening several communities to the west of Colorado Springs, including some neighborhoods on the western edge of the Springs. This fire could spread into two of our important landmarks: the Garden of the Gods and Pikes Peak.
Every wildfire bothers me, but this fire is breaking my heart. Colorado Springs is my home. There's no place in the world as beautiful in my opinion. And to think that a human is the cause of this... I just can't fathom starting a fire that would destroy so much. The official stance is that they're investigating the source of the fire and they don't know. But since there were no reported lightening strikes on Saturday, that leads me (and several others) to cry foul-play. Someone started this fire. Whether on accident or on purpose is unknown. But I know in my gut that someone had a hand in this.
So I'm begging all of you to please do everything that you can to not start a wildfire. When the Forest Service says that the fire danger is high, do not start campfires or use firepits. When using a firepit or campfire, do not ever leave it unattended and make sure the fire is out completely before leaving the area. Do not throw lit cigarettes on the ground or out a car window. Even in your own home and yard be vigilent when using candles, incense, fireplaces, barbecues, fire pits, or tiki torches. And I know they're fun to light and watch, but please do not use fireworks. Not only are they dangerous to your person but you never know when something is going to spark a fire. I don't care where you're at and how wet you think the ground and foliage are, do not use fireworks.
Please consider how your actions will impact the lives of the people around you. More than 3000 acres have been burned by the Waldo Canyon fire so far and over 2000 people have been displaced. Our whole community is suffering because so many of our major tourist attractions are closed until this wildfire is put out. When will that be? We don't know. The fire is only 5% contained while I write this and it's taken two days to get to that point. One experienced firefighter guessed on tv that this fire would keep at it until we get rain. And there's none in the seven day forecast. So I'll ask again to please keep our community in your thoughts and prayers, especially the crews that are fighting the fire.