2020 Routt County Fair Limited Due to COVID-19 Impacts

Plans for 4-H and FFA Livestock Shows and Sale in Development

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, CO – June 5, 2020 — After weighing all public health and safety concerns along with the directives in the State’s Public Health Order 20-28 dated June 2, 2020, and upon the recommendation of the Fair Advisory Board, the Routt County Board of Commissioners decided to limit the 2020 Routt County Fair scheduled for August 7-16. The County and Fair Board are moving forward and working out details for hosting 4-H and FFA shows and the Junior Livestock Sale.

Routt County and the Fair Advisory Board remain committed to the health and safety of volunteers, participants, and attendees along with adhering to all state and local public health orders, as well as support of local youth in the 4-H and FFA programs. The Fifth Amended Public Health Order 20-28 Safer at Home and in the Vast, Great Outdoors of June 2, 2020, states in section J.#3 that “Due to ongoing concerns regarding disease transmission in larger group setting that could result in disease outbreaks, the following activities are NOT authorized to occur… #3. Rodeos, FAIRS, festivals, and parades.”

Moving forward, the Fair Advisory Board (FAB) and Routt County 4-H will continue working together to coordinate 4-H shows and the Junior Livestock Sale, allowing 4-H and FFA members to complete their projects. They are exploring virtual livestock shows and weighing the advantages of potentially wider audiences by using technology.

The Commissioners voted unanimously to limit the fair, but at the same time move forward with the 4-H and FFA shows and the Junior Livestock Sale. In a joint statement, they said, “This is a sad day when we cannot have a full County Fair. This event is part of our heritage and important to so many families. It hits home and makes us realize the effects of COVID-19. We are committed to making the best of an unusual and challenging situation. Continuing with the 4-H and FFA events will be important for the youth members to be able to complete their projects. We are disappointed that the Fair will need to look so different this year, but we are hopeful in 2021 we can get back to normal with all the Fair activities.

The Routt County Fair has been operating for 106 years, and has only been cancelled 3 times in its history – in 1932, 1933 and 1934 due to lack of funding during the Great Depression.

For questions, concerns, thoughts, or something to contribute, please contact the Fair Office via email (info@routtcountyfair.org ) or phone (970) 276-3068.

Please watch the Routt County Fair and Fairgrounds Facebook page and website for updates as they become available.

Contact: Routt County Fair Advisory Board
398 South Poplar Street
P.O. Box 1000
Hayden, CO 81639
(970) 276-3068 (P) ~ (970) 816-9568 (M)
info@routtcountyfair.org ~ www.routtcountyfair.org ~




Hayden Community Test Day

What:Drive-thru Community Testing by Appointment
Who:If you have experienced symptoms within the last seven (7) days of fever, cough, shortness of breath, fatigue, lack of appetite, and/or body aches.
Where:Routt County Fairgrounds – 398 South Poplar Street, Hayden, CO
When:Thursday, April 30 – 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
How:To make an appointment, call 970-870-5577 for the required screening!

North Routt Community Test Day

What:Community Testing by Appointment
Who:If you have experienced symptoms within the last seven (7) days of fever, cough, shortness of breath, fatigue, lack of appetite, and/or body aches.
Where:Charter School – 26990 Eagle Lane, Clark, CO
When:Wednesday, April 29, 2020 – 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
How:To make an appointment, call 970-870-5577 for the required screening!


  • By Appointment ONLY
  • NO walk-ups allowed
  • DO NOT show up early

Routt County Fire Restrictions under Consideration


Routt County Fire Restrictions under Consideration

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, CO – April 10, 2020 — In a conference call this week, all the Fire Protection Districts in Routt County voiced their concerned about the ability to respond effectively to wildland fires and out-of-control agriculture or open burns. Conversations are currently taking place at the state and local level considering increasing levels of fire restrictions. Just this week, the U.S. Forest Service issued bans on recreational fires on all National Forest public lands. At present, established guidelines for fire burns are still in effect and will be enforced by local law enforcement.

“As we enter into our spring and summer seasons, our agriculture communities will understandably want to conduct controlled agriculture burns critical to their ability to produce crops for people and livestock alike. However, we ask the community to consider how stressed local county and municipal government resources are at this time due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We have guidelines already in place that need to be followed. When they are not, we will issue fines and or citations. If the current guidelines are not enough, we will consider enacting more restrictions on controlled burns,” said Sheriff Wiggins, who also serves as the County Fire Warden.

Routt County officials are additionally sensitive to people with respiratory and other health related issues that are exacerbated due to poor air quality and smoky conditions. Recent studies have also shown a link between how increased air pollution negatively affects COVID-19 patients. At this time, while environmental conditions are favorable, there is agreement to allow ONLY agriculture and open burns essential to the following:

  1. Ditch burning in conjunction with irrigation, weed control and production of crops.
  2. Reduction of currently permitted slash piles to assist in wildland fire mitigations plans.
  3. Permitted open burns approved by the local fire chief or their designee.

The U.S. Forest Service has issued Fire Bans including recreational fires on all National Forest lands. In an attempt to reduce confusion, Routt County officials support restricting recreational fires.

Routt County currently requires all open burns to be permitted. To inquire about or obtain a permit call your local fire district or go to https://www.covid19routtcounty.com/environmental-health-department

North Routt Fire Protection District
Mike Swinsick – District Fire Chief
(970) 879-6064

West Routt Fire Protection District
Dal Leck – District Fire Chief
(970) 276-3511

Oak Creek Fire Protection District
Chuck Wisecup – District Fire Chief
(970) 736-8104 – (970) 846-5121

Yampa Fire Protection District
Machia ‘Ky’ Cox – District Fire Chief
(970) 638-4227

Steamboat Springs Fire Rescue
Chuck Cerasoli – Interim Fire Chief
(970) 879-7170

DO NOT do any of the following:

• Intentionally start an open burn without a signed permit. Violators will be issued a citation with fines ranging from $500 up to $1,500 for violations under state statute C.R.S 25-7-123.
• Start an agriculture burn/controlled burn without first calling Routt County Communications and advising that you are conducting and Ag burn. Please provide the time and location prior to starting the burn.
• Start any type of burn unless conditions are safe and personal resources are readily available to attack fires that may become out of control, even if you have a permit. Know your limitations!
• Violate any current fire restriction in place. If you have a question, call your fire district.

Before starting a fire, you should understand:

• Firefighting resources may not be able to respond to your aid and you may be solely responsible for extinguishing the fire and any associated liability.
• Out-of-control fires may result in criminal charges if the fire moves onto the private property others.
• You can be civilly and criminally responsible for out of control fires due to negligence or unsafe burning practices.

Officials will continue to closely monitor our fire and environmental conditions and make fire restriction decisions using an abundance of caution and best practices.

If calls for wildland fires or out-of-control agriculture and open burns become an increasing concern for public safety, stricter fire restrictions will occur! It is everyone’s responsibility to use extreme caution when using fire as tool. When it is necessary to conduct an open or agriculture burn, please use all safety precautions with due regard to current weather conditions.

FAQ’s on Routt County Executive Orders

Routt County Joint Information Center
March 24, 2020
FAQ’s on Routt County Executive Orders

I had plans to vacation in Routt County this week, may I still come?
Order One prohibits any new visitors coming to Routt County and staying in local lodging. All short term lodging (30 days or less), including but not limited to hotels, motels, timeshares, short term rentals (including but not limited to rentals done through direct owner to renter contact, a management company, VRBO, Airbnb, or other similar service), bed and breakfasts, lodges, retreats, RV parks, and camping is prohibited. There shall be no new bookings or reservations for the time period in which this Order is in effect. Reservations beginning on or after 08:00 a.m. on March 27, 2020 shall be cancelled.

Are there exemptions to the Lodging Order?
Yes, the following are exempt from the Lodging Order:
• Lodging necessary for emergency or quarantine purposes
• Lodging necessary to provide lodging for essential federal, state, county or local personnel, including, but not limited to, essential personnel for the County’s Emergency Operations Center and Public Health Department
• Advocates of Routt County’s domestic violence shelter
• Lodging necessary because it is not safe or possible for a guest to depart from the County
• Lodging that is occupied by a local worker

Can I invite friends over to my house?
The Order prohibits the gathering of five or more people not in the same household. The intent is to limit physical gatherings to members of immediate families and households.

May I meet up with friends to meet outside?
While we encourage people to recreate outdoors, Order Two prohibits the gathering of more than five, non-household persons. Put simply, adults, children and teenagers cannot congregate in groups, this includes for outdoor activities as well as at public places such as the post office or gas station. Additionally, we need to limit the number of shoppers in retail stores to stop the spread of the virus.

Is this Public Gathering Public Health Order the same as a Shelter in Place or Stay at Home Order?
No. We are trying to encourage people to adhere to the physical distancing guidelines and limit the amount of people who are together at one time. People can still go outside to recreate, go shopping, get take-out from our restaurants, but stay safe. Law enforcement will be enforcing these public health orders.

What are the Physical Distancing requirements?
Physical distancing, also known as social distancing, requires the following:
• Limit contact of people at least 6 feet from each other
• Limit contact to less than 10 minutes
• Wash hands with soap and water for at least twenty seconds as frequently as possible or using hand sanitizer
• Cover coughs or sneezes into the sleeve or elbows
• Regularly clean high-touch surfaces
• Do not shake hands, employ another greeting that does not touch

Is anyone exempt from this Order?
All first responders, emergency management personnel, emergency dispatchers, court personnel, law enforcement personnel, daycares and childcare, and gatherings necessary for employment are exempt from this Order.

Can businesses have more than five people?
All businesses that remain open must meet the Mitigation Requirements:
• No more than five customers can be in a business at any one time (exceptions for some retail businesses)
• The business must have a cleaning process in place to reduce cross-contamination by customers when using pens, credit card machines, counters, gas pumps, and any other item that is touched by more than one person
• The Social Distancing Requirements must be met, including, but not limited to, while customers are standing in checkout line, while customers are standing in line to enter the business, and while shopping or otherwise conducting their business

Are any businesses exempt from the Public Gathering Order?
Any hardware store, grocery store or discount department store [City Market, Safeway, Natural Grocers, Hayden Mercantile, Select Super Market, Walmart, Ace at the Curve, and Walgreens] may have five customers for each 1000 square feet of their building and must take effective measures to implement this requirement.

Town of Hayden Adoption of Emergency Ordinance 696 Declaration of Disaster via COVID-19 Pandemic and Emergency Operations Plan

March 20, 2020 – The Town of Hayden Town Council adopted emergency Ordinance 696 declaring a disaster resulting from COVID-19 Pandemic impacts and activated its emergency operations plan. What does this mean? It means Town Council has opened up additional financial resources from the State and Federal government for the Town and increased our ability to serve the citizens. Please see below specifics: 

  • The main reason the Council approved the ordinance was to open up State and Federal funding assistance to the Town as our resources begin to strain as a result of the economic impacts to the Town (which is already happening); 
  • The ordinance allows the Town Council to better work in unison with Routt County emergency management as well as other governmental agencies in Routt County; 
  • It prioritizes help for first responders to get the necessary resources they need in times of shortages (like right now); 
  • It gives the Town Council expanded legislative powers to better deal with this pandemic and protect the Town; 
  • It will help prioritize things like supply chains, financial help, food, etc., through the office of emergency management at Routt County for the Town. 

*The important thing to understand is that without this declaration the Town would not be eligible to receive any additional funding or help from the State and Federal government to mitigate COVID-19 impacts.* 

Outside of Federal and State Government Executive Orders (which must be complied with by everyone) we are operating and serving the Town just in a new and unique way. Be safe, healthy, and please email the Town with any questions and we will try and answer them. 

The Town is constantly updating things on our website at regarding this issue at https://haydencolorado.org/news/ and here are additional resources via websites http://www.co.routt.co.us/AlertCenter.aspx?AID=COVID-19-Updates-26 https://covid19.colorado.gov/ https://www.routtcountyunitedway.org/covid-19-updates/ 

Contact tracing: When a person is diagnosed with coronavirus, how do Routt County officials backtrack their movements?

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, CO, March 20, 2020 — When a person tests positive for COVID-19, the Routt County public health department’s team are alerted. The investigation begins with an extremely low-tech tool: a conversation. “We interview the person who has tested positive, (and) we identify all the people they’ve been in contact with in the period (more…)