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Needham High to stage 'Laramie Project,' about brutal 1998 murder of gay ... - Wicked Local Needham



By Ed Symkus




needham@wickedlocal.com




The upcoming Needham High School Theater Arts production of "The Laramie Project" has quite a bit of history behind it.




Fifteen years ago, just outside of Laramie, Wyoming, 21-year-old Matthew Shepard, a gay University of Wyoming student, was kidnapped, beaten, and left for dead by two local 21-year-old men. He died in a hospital five days later, and by that time press from around the country had flocked to Wyoming to investigate this newest hate crime. But along with reporters were members of the New York-based Tectonic Theater Project. They conducted more than 200 interviews with locals resulting, two years later, in the Denver premiere of the documentary-styled play "The Laramie Project," featuring all of the actors playing multiple characters.




The play was adapted into an HBO movie and, according to the Tectonic Theatre Website, "is one of the most performed plays in America today." It comes to Needham High School as a choice of Jonah LeDoux, who is co-directing it with Jean Robinson. Both are theater teachers at Needham High School.




"I�ve been wanting to direct this for a long time, said LeDoux, by phone from his home in Needham, and who last year directed a Needham High production of "Romeo and Juliet." "There have been some random incidents around school, and some attitudes that I�ve heard about, so I thought, �Let�s talk about it. Let�s find a play where we can talk about people�s attitudes toward people who are different. I think plays like this are a good way to have an open, honest discussion. �The Laramie Project� doesn�t whitewash anything; it�s very much about people speaking openly.




"I think it deals with the NIMBY problem" � an acronym for not in my backyard � he added. "It�s like, �This doesn�t happen where I am,� but of course, that�s never really true, is it? I think a play like this is almost more important to perform in a place that people consider a little more liberal."




LeDoux was quite pleased that there was no controversy surrounding the choice of presenting "The Laramie Project" in Needham.




"To everyone�s credit, it was pretty much considered a fantastic idea, from the principal, Dr. Pizzi, to my boss [Director of Fine & Performing Arts] David Neves. They were saying that the only issue was how do we make it a bigger deal. One way is we�re having an in-school assembly on the day we open, where we�ll perform about 20 minutes of the play for several classes, then have some discussions about the play and what it�s talking about."




For those not familiar with the 90-minute drama or its offbeat structure, it was written by Tectonic�s founder Moises Kaufman, and consists of edited interviews from the Laramie visit by Kaufman and his actors.






Page 2 of 2 - "It�s presented almost like a town hall," said LeDoux. "A bunch of people come on and say, �We�re actors, and we went out to Wyoming and we spoke to a lot of people, and this is a portion of what people said to us.� Then the actor playing that actor will say, �And now I�m playing THIS person.� And then another actor will say, �This person is THIS person now.�




"There are about 40 different characters in it," he added, "played by 11 actors � five seniors and six freshmen. That worked out kind of weird this year, as it�s usually more of a mix, with a few people from all different years."




Working closely with LeDoux is Jean Robinson.




"I�ve taken the lead as director," said LeDoux, "but Jean has been instrumental coming in and being a critical second eye. She�s a wonderful director in her own right, and I can say that the way we blocked the last scene was definitely more of her idea than mine."




LeDoux went on to explain that the theater program at the high school is evolving, and its scope is expanding.




"Last year the drama we did was �The Crucible� and the musical was �Urinetown�," he said.




So will he follow up "The Laramie Project" with a light, breezy comedy?




"Well, this play is not without humor, but it�s definitely talking about a serious subject," he said. "I don�t know what I�ll do next. I guess it�ll be whatever strikes my fancy."




Hawaiian safety adjusts to life in Wyoming - Chron


LARAMIE, Wyo. (AP) — In Hawaii, "Kamana" means "football."


And football means leaving home. It started in 1953, when John "Squeeze" Kamana Jr. made the journey from Hawaii to California to play center at the University of Southern California. His twin sons, John III and Carter, each followed suit. John III, an agile tight end, played at his father's alma mater alongside future NFL Hall of Famers Ronnie Lott and Marcus Allen.


Carter settled in the Big Ten at Michigan State, where he became a standout at cornerback.


When Carter's son, Tim, was born, he inherited a lofty reputation. Football was a rite of passage, passed down from father to son. He was a Kamana, and it was only a matter of time until he would have to prove it.


"It was everything," Kamana said. "I wasn't going to go out and play tennis. I wasn't going to go out and play badminton. I was going to going to come out and play football."


For years on the island, Tim's last name hung over his head — a curse, a shadow, a silent expectation. He was a Kamana, and that meant that everyone knew him. They knew, too, what his family had accomplished.


He would play football, and he would excel. He had to. Anything less would feel like a departure from a proud tradition.


"Having that overshadow me a little bit when I was growing up, I didn't really like it too much," Kamana told the Casper Star-Tribune (http://bit.ly/1kjn1Gz). "Everybody in the whole state of Hawaii knew who my dad and my uncle and my grandpa were. So I would always hear, 'You have a big name to live up to. You have big shoes to fill.' And I didn't really like that.


"I kind of tried to just toss it under the bed. I didn't want to think about it too much."


Eventually, Kamana stopped running from his name. He embraced it. He held it up like a flag, a symbol of pride, a challenge he continued to chase.


Throughout his time at Punahou High School — the same school his uncle starred at — the safety with the long, black flowing locks competed against the team across the line, as well as ghosts — the Kamanas who came before him.


"I knew that I needed to make my own name for myself," Kamana said. "It's good to have that background, and it pushes me to be better. It pushes me to compete with what they've done to make myself a better player."


As 2012 national signing day arrived, Tim knew he wanted to follow in his family's footsteps in another way.


He wanted to leave "the rock."


He had Division I offers from three schools — Hawaii, Army and Wyoming. Wyoming's defensive coordinator, Chris Tormey, had showed up at Kamana's high school less than a week before signing day. He sat in Punahou's dean's office, and told Kamana he needed a safety.


Kamana would leave home, just like his father, uncle and grandfather had done before him. But Wyoming wasn't his initial destination.


"Ever since I was young, I always wanted to get away," Kamana said. "My parents always preached that to me, too. 'Home is always going to be home. Hawaii is always going to be there.' I love it, and I like to go back as much as possible. But at the same time, I had to get off the rock.


"You have to go and experience something different."


The following fall, Kamana arrived at the United States Military Academy in West Point, N.Y. Besides football, the world he knew was nearly 5,000 miles and an entire ocean away.


In a room full of people, Tim Kamana was alone.


The 5-foot-11 safety stood in a giant auditorium on the first day of basic training. To his right and left, families stuck together in packs, mothers and fathers hesitant to part ways with their children. Kamana was nervous, scared, a blip in the massive crowd. A speaker stood in front of the group and spoke for roughly 10 minutes.


The end was abrupt. For Kamana, it was shocking.


"They said, 'You have 60 seconds to say goodbye, and after 60 seconds I expect you to be lined up on the other side of the auditorium.' You just see all the moms and sisters start crying," Kamana said.


Kamana thought he knew what he signed up for. He was wrong. In a new world, he recognized little. Even football was a passing pleasure, 90 minutes of practice jammed into a day filled with structure and rigorous expectations.


While Kamana sees the value in what he went through, West Point wasn't for him. After a semester at the U.S. Military Academy Preparatory School, he was on the move again.


"I thought I had a really good feel for what it was going to be like," Kamana said. "But it's kind of one of those things where you really don't know what it's like until you get your feet in the mud."


Tim Kamana thought he knew what cold was.


In New York, he lived it. He endured his first snowstorm, a far cry from the 65-degree days in Hawaii that sent everyone he knew running for their jackets. He bundled up, and he adjusted.


But when he arrived in Laramie in spring 2012, "cold" received a new definition.


"I remember coach (Dave) Christensen would always tell me, 'I didn't tell you it was going to be warm when you came here,'" Kamana said with a chuckle. "But I was like, 'I didn't know it was going to be this cold!'"


The weather wasn't the only difference between school and home. In Wyoming, the towns are scattered across the map, separated by miles of bountiful terrain and open road. In Hawaii, nearly as many people live in his home town — Honolulu — as in the entire state of Wyoming.


Growing up, Kamana always knew he wanted to leave "the rock," to experience the world across the ocean. The challenge, however, was more than he bargained for.


"That first semester here was really hard for me. It was really difficult," Kamana said. "I was calling home probably two or three times a week to my parents, like, 'I don't know if this is for me.'"


His father understood, as did his uncle and grandfather. They had been there. They urged him to keep pushing.


Kamana redshirted during the 2013 season, and is now competing for one of Wyoming's starting spots at safety. After journeying across an ocean and then a country, Kamana, who is considered a redshirt freshman and has four years of eligibility left, is on the verge of arriving on the playing field in the Mountain West.


"He's a really physical football player," Wyoming safeties coach David Brown said during spring practice. "He's understanding the scheme at this point as we're wrapping up spring ball, so he's playing a lot faster. And he's a guy that's going to help us in the fall.


"He's going to play on every special teams unit and has a great chance to win a starting spot in the secondary."


In Wyoming's spring game on April 19, Kamana got the start at strong safety with the first-team defense. Midway through the second quarter, quarterback Sam Stratton fumbled after taking a hit from defensive end Sonny Puletasi.


Kamana saw the ball bouncing on the turf. Nose tackle Chase Appleby dove for it but missed. With his father watching in the crowd, Tim picked it up and sprinted 73 yards down the sideline and into the north end zone, while his teammates raised their hands and followed along behind him.


When he got there, Kamana wasn't alone. Sophomore cornerback Tim Hayes patted him on the helmet, and senior defensive end Riley Lange ran over and delivered an elated hug.


Plays like that are what brought Kamana here, just like his father, uncle and grandfather before him. And the camaraderie it induced is why he's here to stay.


"It's slowly growing on me more and more," Kamana said of Wyoming. "It's all about the people you hang around with and surround yourself with. And I feel like there's a lot of good people up here."


___


Information from: Casper (Wyo.) Star-Tribune, http://www.trib.com



Wyoming watercraft inspection training offered - Kota



CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - The Wyoming Game & Fish Department is holding a watercraft inspection training course for the public in Laramie and Cheyenne.


The department says it wants the public's help preventing the spread of aquatic invasive species that threaten boating areas.


The training will be held in Laramie on May 14 and Cheyenne on May 15.


People who bring a boat into Wyoming from March 1 through Nov. 30 are required to get an inspection before hitting the water.


The department says people with training can also be certified to inspect other watercraft.


Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.




Outdoor briefs - Laramie Boomerang


Jackalope 5K


The 13th annual Jackalope 5K is set for 10 a.m. today at Optimist Park. Registration is $25 before April 20 or $30 after and includes a technical T-shirt. Discounts for families and High Plains Harriers members are available. Proceeds will benefit Black Dog Animal Rescue. Awards will be given for top finishers and age-group winners, and door prizes will be given after the race. For more information, go to http://ift.tt/1lcBmcT.

Run Josh Run


A fundraiser for University of Wyoming’s chapter of Engineers Without Borders, Run Josh Run is a 24-hour fundraising event that’s scheduled to start at 10 a.m. today. Participants may collect pledges for laps completed by 10 a.m. Sunday. One runner, Dan Larson, will attempt to cover 100 miles during that time, while others will work as teams to see how many laps they can complete. Proceeds will benefit a clean-water project in Kenya. For more information, go to http://ift.tt/1i7RxVe.

Bark beetle video series to premier


A series of short videos about the effects of and responses to the recent mountain pine beetle outbreak is set to premier at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday at the University of Wyoming Berry Biodiversity Conservation Center. Admission is free. The videos were made by the U.S. Forest Service and the UW Ruckelshaus Institute of Environment and Natural Resources. They show impacted areas in the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forests and responses to the outbreak.


Game and Fish holds public meetings


The Wyoming Game and Fish Department plans to discuss proposed regulation changes at a series of meetings around the state. A meeting in Laramie is scheduled for 6 p.m. Thursday at the Laramie Regional Office, 528 S. Adams. Proposals include extending the deadline for nonresident regular and landowner deer and antelope applications. Proposed 2014 gray wolf hunt area mortality quotas will also be available. Written comments may be sent to WGFD, Regulations, 3030 Energy Lane, Casper, WY 82604. The comment deadline is 5 p.m. May 30. For more information, go to wgfd.wyo.gov.

BLM opens comment period


The Bureau of Land Management Rawlins Field Office opened a two-week comment period on its inventory of lands with wilderness characteristics. The inventory is being done for a visual resource management amendment to the 2008 Rawlins Resource Management Plan. Comments will be accepted that pertain to the inventory only. The Rawlins plan covers most of the eastern half of the Red Desert. The inventory is available online at www.blm.gov/wy. Comments must be submitted by May 2. They may be emailed to blm_wy_rl_rmp_vrm@blm.gov, faxed to (307) 328-4224 or mailed to BLM Rawlins Field Office, 1300 N. Third St., P.O. Box 2407, Rawlins, WY 82301. For more information, call Sheila Lehman at (307) 328-4264.

Forest service seeks comments


The U.S. Forest Service is seeking public comment on a proposal to treat non-native and invasive plants on the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forests and Thunder Basin National Grassland. The emphasis of the proposal is to use aerial herbicide application to control cheatgrass and other annual grasses on critical big-game winter ranges, and to enhance sagebrush on sage grouse habitat. A draft environmental impact statement is available online at http://ift.tt/1iANmOe. Written comments may be sent to: Forest Supervisor, 2468 Jackson, Laramie, WY 82070. Comments may be sent by fax to (307) 745-2398, or by email to: comments-rocky-mountain-medicine-bow-laramie@fs.fed.us. The comment period closes May 7. For more information, call Melissa Martin at 745-2371 or Misty Hays at (307) 358-7102.

Ambulance Chase 5K


The University of Wyoming College of Law Ambulance Chase 5K is scheduled for 9 a.m. May 3 at the Law School, located at the corner of 19th and Willett. Proceeds will benefit causes chosen by the graduating class and the Laramie Fire Department. Registration is $20 or $25 on race day and includes a T-shirt and refreshments. A pre-race packet pick-up is set for 5-8 p.m. May 2. For more information, go to www.active.com or call 766-6416.

Forest Service accepting funding applications


The U.S. Forest Service is accepting proposals to fund natural resource projects. Funding is provided for counties through the Medicine Bow-Routt Resource Advisory Committee, and the deadline is May 9. Projects should enhance forest ecosystems or restore and improve land health and water quality. For an application, contact coordinator Aaron Voos at 745-2323 or atvoos@fs.fed.us. Since its inception is 2009, the committee has approved more than $1 million in funding for projects in five counties.

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Needham High to stage 'Laramie Project,' about brutal 1998 murder of gay ... - Wicked Local Needham



By Ed Symkus




needham@wickedlocal.com




The upcoming Needham High School Theater Arts production of "The Laramie Project" has quite a bit of history behind it.




Fifteen years ago, just outside of Laramie, Wyoming, 21-year-old Matthew Shepard, a gay University of Wyoming student, was kidnapped, beaten, and left for dead by two local 21-year-old men. He died in a hospital five days later, and by that time press from around the country had flocked to Wyoming to investigate this newest hate crime. But along with reporters were members of the New York-based Tectonic Theater Project. They conducted more than 200 interviews with locals resulting, two years later, in the Denver premiere of the documentary-styled play "The Laramie Project," featuring all of the actors playing multiple characters.




The play was adapted into an HBO movie and, according to the Tectonic Theatre Website, "is one of the most performed plays in America today." It comes to Needham High School as a choice of Jonah LeDoux, who is co-directing it with Jean Robinson. Both are theater teachers at Needham High School.




"I�ve been wanting to direct this for a long time, said LeDoux, by phone from his home in Needham, and who last year directed a Needham High production of "Romeo and Juliet." "There have been some random incidents around school, and some attitudes that I�ve heard about, so I thought, �Let�s talk about it. Let�s find a play where we can talk about people�s attitudes toward people who are different. I think plays like this are a good way to have an open, honest discussion. �The Laramie Project� doesn�t whitewash anything; it�s very much about people speaking openly.




"I think it deals with the NIMBY problem" � an acronym for not in my backyard � he added. "It�s like, �This doesn�t happen where I am,� but of course, that�s never really true, is it? I think a play like this is almost more important to perform in a place that people consider a little more liberal."




LeDoux was quite pleased that there was no controversy surrounding the choice of presenting "The Laramie Project" in Needham.




"To everyone�s credit, it was pretty much considered a fantastic idea, from the principal, Dr. Pizzi, to my boss [Director of Fine & Performing Arts] David Neves. They were saying that the only issue was how do we make it a bigger deal. One way is we�re having an in-school assembly on the day we open, where we�ll perform about 20 minutes of the play for several classes, then have some discussions about the play and what it�s talking about."




For those not familiar with the 90-minute drama or its offbeat structure, it was written by Tectonic�s founder Moises Kaufman, and consists of edited interviews from the Laramie visit by Kaufman and his actors.






Page 2 of 2 - "It�s presented almost like a town hall," said LeDoux. "A bunch of people come on and say, �We�re actors, and we went out to Wyoming and we spoke to a lot of people, and this is a portion of what people said to us.� Then the actor playing that actor will say, �And now I�m playing THIS person.� And then another actor will say, �This person is THIS person now.�




"There are about 40 different characters in it," he added, "played by 11 actors � five seniors and six freshmen. That worked out kind of weird this year, as it�s usually more of a mix, with a few people from all different years."




Working closely with LeDoux is Jean Robinson.




"I�ve taken the lead as director," said LeDoux, "but Jean has been instrumental coming in and being a critical second eye. She�s a wonderful director in her own right, and I can say that the way we blocked the last scene was definitely more of her idea than mine."




LeDoux went on to explain that the theater program at the high school is evolving, and its scope is expanding.




"Last year the drama we did was �The Crucible� and the musical was �Urinetown�," he said.




So will he follow up "The Laramie Project" with a light, breezy comedy?




"Well, this play is not without humor, but it�s definitely talking about a serious subject," he said. "I don�t know what I�ll do next. I guess it�ll be whatever strikes my fancy."




Hawaiian safety adjusts to life in Wyoming - Chron


LARAMIE, Wyo. (AP) — In Hawaii, "Kamana" means "football."


And football means leaving home. It started in 1953, when John "Squeeze" Kamana Jr. made the journey from Hawaii to California to play center at the University of Southern California. His twin sons, John III and Carter, each followed suit. John III, an agile tight end, played at his father's alma mater alongside future NFL Hall of Famers Ronnie Lott and Marcus Allen.


Carter settled in the Big Ten at Michigan State, where he became a standout at cornerback.


When Carter's son, Tim, was born, he inherited a lofty reputation. Football was a rite of passage, passed down from father to son. He was a Kamana, and it was only a matter of time until he would have to prove it.


"It was everything," Kamana said. "I wasn't going to go out and play tennis. I wasn't going to go out and play badminton. I was going to going to come out and play football."


For years on the island, Tim's last name hung over his head — a curse, a shadow, a silent expectation. He was a Kamana, and that meant that everyone knew him. They knew, too, what his family had accomplished.


He would play football, and he would excel. He had to. Anything less would feel like a departure from a proud tradition.


"Having that overshadow me a little bit when I was growing up, I didn't really like it too much," Kamana told the Casper Star-Tribune (http://bit.ly/1kjn1Gz). "Everybody in the whole state of Hawaii knew who my dad and my uncle and my grandpa were. So I would always hear, 'You have a big name to live up to. You have big shoes to fill.' And I didn't really like that.


"I kind of tried to just toss it under the bed. I didn't want to think about it too much."


Eventually, Kamana stopped running from his name. He embraced it. He held it up like a flag, a symbol of pride, a challenge he continued to chase.


Throughout his time at Punahou High School — the same school his uncle starred at — the safety with the long, black flowing locks competed against the team across the line, as well as ghosts — the Kamanas who came before him.


"I knew that I needed to make my own name for myself," Kamana said. "It's good to have that background, and it pushes me to be better. It pushes me to compete with what they've done to make myself a better player."


As 2012 national signing day arrived, Tim knew he wanted to follow in his family's footsteps in another way.


He wanted to leave "the rock."


He had Division I offers from three schools — Hawaii, Army and Wyoming. Wyoming's defensive coordinator, Chris Tormey, had showed up at Kamana's high school less than a week before signing day. He sat in Punahou's dean's office, and told Kamana he needed a safety.


Kamana would leave home, just like his father, uncle and grandfather had done before him. But Wyoming wasn't his initial destination.


"Ever since I was young, I always wanted to get away," Kamana said. "My parents always preached that to me, too. 'Home is always going to be home. Hawaii is always going to be there.' I love it, and I like to go back as much as possible. But at the same time, I had to get off the rock.


"You have to go and experience something different."


The following fall, Kamana arrived at the United States Military Academy in West Point, N.Y. Besides football, the world he knew was nearly 5,000 miles and an entire ocean away.


In a room full of people, Tim Kamana was alone.


The 5-foot-11 safety stood in a giant auditorium on the first day of basic training. To his right and left, families stuck together in packs, mothers and fathers hesitant to part ways with their children. Kamana was nervous, scared, a blip in the massive crowd. A speaker stood in front of the group and spoke for roughly 10 minutes.


The end was abrupt. For Kamana, it was shocking.


"They said, 'You have 60 seconds to say goodbye, and after 60 seconds I expect you to be lined up on the other side of the auditorium.' You just see all the moms and sisters start crying," Kamana said.


Kamana thought he knew what he signed up for. He was wrong. In a new world, he recognized little. Even football was a passing pleasure, 90 minutes of practice jammed into a day filled with structure and rigorous expectations.


While Kamana sees the value in what he went through, West Point wasn't for him. After a semester at the U.S. Military Academy Preparatory School, he was on the move again.


"I thought I had a really good feel for what it was going to be like," Kamana said. "But it's kind of one of those things where you really don't know what it's like until you get your feet in the mud."


Tim Kamana thought he knew what cold was.


In New York, he lived it. He endured his first snowstorm, a far cry from the 65-degree days in Hawaii that sent everyone he knew running for their jackets. He bundled up, and he adjusted.


But when he arrived in Laramie in spring 2012, "cold" received a new definition.


"I remember coach (Dave) Christensen would always tell me, 'I didn't tell you it was going to be warm when you came here,'" Kamana said with a chuckle. "But I was like, 'I didn't know it was going to be this cold!'"


The weather wasn't the only difference between school and home. In Wyoming, the towns are scattered across the map, separated by miles of bountiful terrain and open road. In Hawaii, nearly as many people live in his home town — Honolulu — as in the entire state of Wyoming.


Growing up, Kamana always knew he wanted to leave "the rock," to experience the world across the ocean. The challenge, however, was more than he bargained for.


"That first semester here was really hard for me. It was really difficult," Kamana said. "I was calling home probably two or three times a week to my parents, like, 'I don't know if this is for me.'"


His father understood, as did his uncle and grandfather. They had been there. They urged him to keep pushing.


Kamana redshirted during the 2013 season, and is now competing for one of Wyoming's starting spots at safety. After journeying across an ocean and then a country, Kamana, who is considered a redshirt freshman and has four years of eligibility left, is on the verge of arriving on the playing field in the Mountain West.


"He's a really physical football player," Wyoming safeties coach David Brown said during spring practice. "He's understanding the scheme at this point as we're wrapping up spring ball, so he's playing a lot faster. And he's a guy that's going to help us in the fall.


"He's going to play on every special teams unit and has a great chance to win a starting spot in the secondary."


In Wyoming's spring game on April 19, Kamana got the start at strong safety with the first-team defense. Midway through the second quarter, quarterback Sam Stratton fumbled after taking a hit from defensive end Sonny Puletasi.


Kamana saw the ball bouncing on the turf. Nose tackle Chase Appleby dove for it but missed. With his father watching in the crowd, Tim picked it up and sprinted 73 yards down the sideline and into the north end zone, while his teammates raised their hands and followed along behind him.


When he got there, Kamana wasn't alone. Sophomore cornerback Tim Hayes patted him on the helmet, and senior defensive end Riley Lange ran over and delivered an elated hug.


Plays like that are what brought Kamana here, just like his father, uncle and grandfather before him. And the camaraderie it induced is why he's here to stay.


"It's slowly growing on me more and more," Kamana said of Wyoming. "It's all about the people you hang around with and surround yourself with. And I feel like there's a lot of good people up here."


___


Information from: Casper (Wyo.) Star-Tribune, http://www.trib.com



Wyoming watercraft inspection training offered - Kota



CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - The Wyoming Game & Fish Department is holding a watercraft inspection training course for the public in Laramie and Cheyenne.


The department says it wants the public's help preventing the spread of aquatic invasive species that threaten boating areas.


The training will be held in Laramie on May 14 and Cheyenne on May 15.


People who bring a boat into Wyoming from March 1 through Nov. 30 are required to get an inspection before hitting the water.


The department says people with training can also be certified to inspect other watercraft.


Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.




Outdoor briefs - Laramie Boomerang


Jackalope 5K


The 13th annual Jackalope 5K is set for 10 a.m. today at Optimist Park. Registration is $25 before April 20 or $30 after and includes a technical T-shirt. Discounts for families and High Plains Harriers members are available. Proceeds will benefit Black Dog Animal Rescue. Awards will be given for top finishers and age-group winners, and door prizes will be given after the race. For more information, go to http://ift.tt/1lcBmcT.

Run Josh Run


A fundraiser for University of Wyoming’s chapter of Engineers Without Borders, Run Josh Run is a 24-hour fundraising event that’s scheduled to start at 10 a.m. today. Participants may collect pledges for laps completed by 10 a.m. Sunday. One runner, Dan Larson, will attempt to cover 100 miles during that time, while others will work as teams to see how many laps they can complete. Proceeds will benefit a clean-water project in Kenya. For more information, go to http://ift.tt/1i7RxVe.

Bark beetle video series to premier


A series of short videos about the effects of and responses to the recent mountain pine beetle outbreak is set to premier at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday at the University of Wyoming Berry Biodiversity Conservation Center. Admission is free. The videos were made by the U.S. Forest Service and the UW Ruckelshaus Institute of Environment and Natural Resources. They show impacted areas in the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forests and responses to the outbreak.


Game and Fish holds public meetings


The Wyoming Game and Fish Department plans to discuss proposed regulation changes at a series of meetings around the state. A meeting in Laramie is scheduled for 6 p.m. Thursday at the Laramie Regional Office, 528 S. Adams. Proposals include extending the deadline for nonresident regular and landowner deer and antelope applications. Proposed 2014 gray wolf hunt area mortality quotas will also be available. Written comments may be sent to WGFD, Regulations, 3030 Energy Lane, Casper, WY 82604. The comment deadline is 5 p.m. May 30. For more information, go to wgfd.wyo.gov.

BLM opens comment period


The Bureau of Land Management Rawlins Field Office opened a two-week comment period on its inventory of lands with wilderness characteristics. The inventory is being done for a visual resource management amendment to the 2008 Rawlins Resource Management Plan. Comments will be accepted that pertain to the inventory only. The Rawlins plan covers most of the eastern half of the Red Desert. The inventory is available online at www.blm.gov/wy. Comments must be submitted by May 2. They may be emailed to blm_wy_rl_rmp_vrm@blm.gov, faxed to (307) 328-4224 or mailed to BLM Rawlins Field Office, 1300 N. Third St., P.O. Box 2407, Rawlins, WY 82301. For more information, call Sheila Lehman at (307) 328-4264.

Forest service seeks comments


The U.S. Forest Service is seeking public comment on a proposal to treat non-native and invasive plants on the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forests and Thunder Basin National Grassland. The emphasis of the proposal is to use aerial herbicide application to control cheatgrass and other annual grasses on critical big-game winter ranges, and to enhance sagebrush on sage grouse habitat. A draft environmental impact statement is available online at http://ift.tt/1iANmOe. Written comments may be sent to: Forest Supervisor, 2468 Jackson, Laramie, WY 82070. Comments may be sent by fax to (307) 745-2398, or by email to: comments-rocky-mountain-medicine-bow-laramie@fs.fed.us. The comment period closes May 7. For more information, call Melissa Martin at 745-2371 or Misty Hays at (307) 358-7102.

Ambulance Chase 5K


The University of Wyoming College of Law Ambulance Chase 5K is scheduled for 9 a.m. May 3 at the Law School, located at the corner of 19th and Willett. Proceeds will benefit causes chosen by the graduating class and the Laramie Fire Department. Registration is $20 or $25 on race day and includes a T-shirt and refreshments. A pre-race packet pick-up is set for 5-8 p.m. May 2. For more information, go to www.active.com or call 766-6416.

Forest Service accepting funding applications


The U.S. Forest Service is accepting proposals to fund natural resource projects. Funding is provided for counties through the Medicine Bow-Routt Resource Advisory Committee, and the deadline is May 9. Projects should enhance forest ecosystems or restore and improve land health and water quality. For an application, contact coordinator Aaron Voos at 745-2323 or atvoos@fs.fed.us. Since its inception is 2009, the committee has approved more than $1 million in funding for projects in five counties.

JOIN THE DISCUSSION



Rules of Conduct


The Boomerang is a community newspaper. We encourage comments however posts that contain obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language will not be tolerated. Comments containing links, including third-party links, must be approved before they are published. The comments posted are not necessarily those of the Laramie Boomerang. If you have complaints, questions, or just feedback, please contact us.



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Needham High to stage 'Laramie Project,' about brutal 1998 murder of gay ... - Wicked Local Needham



By Ed Symkus




needham@wickedlocal.com




The upcoming Needham High School Theater Arts production of "The Laramie Project" has quite a bit of history behind it.




Fifteen years ago, just outside of Laramie, Wyoming, 21-year-old Matthew Shepard, a gay University of Wyoming student, was kidnapped, beaten, and left for dead by two local 21-year-old men. He died in a hospital five days later, and by that time press from around the country had flocked to Wyoming to investigate this newest hate crime. But along with reporters were members of the New York-based Tectonic Theater Project. They conducted more than 200 interviews with locals resulting, two years later, in the Denver premiere of the documentary-styled play "The Laramie Project," featuring all of the actors playing multiple characters.




The play was adapted into an HBO movie and, according to the Tectonic Theatre Website, "is one of the most performed plays in America today." It comes to Needham High School as a choice of Jonah LeDoux, who is co-directing it with Jean Robinson. Both are theater teachers at Needham High School.




"I�ve been wanting to direct this for a long time, said LeDoux, by phone from his home in Needham, and who last year directed a Needham High production of "Romeo and Juliet." "There have been some random incidents around school, and some attitudes that I�ve heard about, so I thought, �Let�s talk about it. Let�s find a play where we can talk about people�s attitudes toward people who are different. I think plays like this are a good way to have an open, honest discussion. �The Laramie Project� doesn�t whitewash anything; it�s very much about people speaking openly.




"I think it deals with the NIMBY problem" � an acronym for not in my backyard � he added. "It�s like, �This doesn�t happen where I am,� but of course, that�s never really true, is it? I think a play like this is almost more important to perform in a place that people consider a little more liberal."




LeDoux was quite pleased that there was no controversy surrounding the choice of presenting "The Laramie Project" in Needham.




"To everyone�s credit, it was pretty much considered a fantastic idea, from the principal, Dr. Pizzi, to my boss [Director of Fine & Performing Arts] David Neves. They were saying that the only issue was how do we make it a bigger deal. One way is we�re having an in-school assembly on the day we open, where we�ll perform about 20 minutes of the play for several classes, then have some discussions about the play and what it�s talking about."




For those not familiar with the 90-minute drama or its offbeat structure, it was written by Tectonic�s founder Moises Kaufman, and consists of edited interviews from the Laramie visit by Kaufman and his actors.






Page 2 of 2 - "It�s presented almost like a town hall," said LeDoux. "A bunch of people come on and say, �We�re actors, and we went out to Wyoming and we spoke to a lot of people, and this is a portion of what people said to us.� Then the actor playing that actor will say, �And now I�m playing THIS person.� And then another actor will say, �This person is THIS person now.�




"There are about 40 different characters in it," he added, "played by 11 actors � five seniors and six freshmen. That worked out kind of weird this year, as it�s usually more of a mix, with a few people from all different years."




Working closely with LeDoux is Jean Robinson.




"I�ve taken the lead as director," said LeDoux, "but Jean has been instrumental coming in and being a critical second eye. She�s a wonderful director in her own right, and I can say that the way we blocked the last scene was definitely more of her idea than mine."




LeDoux went on to explain that the theater program at the high school is evolving, and its scope is expanding.




"Last year the drama we did was �The Crucible� and the musical was �Urinetown�," he said.




So will he follow up "The Laramie Project" with a light, breezy comedy?




"Well, this play is not without humor, but it�s definitely talking about a serious subject," he said. "I don�t know what I�ll do next. I guess it�ll be whatever strikes my fancy."




Hawaiian safety adjusts to life in Wyoming - Chron


LARAMIE, Wyo. (AP) — In Hawaii, "Kamana" means "football."


And football means leaving home. It started in 1953, when John "Squeeze" Kamana Jr. made the journey from Hawaii to California to play center at the University of Southern California. His twin sons, John III and Carter, each followed suit. John III, an agile tight end, played at his father's alma mater alongside future NFL Hall of Famers Ronnie Lott and Marcus Allen.


Carter settled in the Big Ten at Michigan State, where he became a standout at cornerback.


When Carter's son, Tim, was born, he inherited a lofty reputation. Football was a rite of passage, passed down from father to son. He was a Kamana, and it was only a matter of time until he would have to prove it.


"It was everything," Kamana said. "I wasn't going to go out and play tennis. I wasn't going to go out and play badminton. I was going to going to come out and play football."


For years on the island, Tim's last name hung over his head — a curse, a shadow, a silent expectation. He was a Kamana, and that meant that everyone knew him. They knew, too, what his family had accomplished.


He would play football, and he would excel. He had to. Anything less would feel like a departure from a proud tradition.


"Having that overshadow me a little bit when I was growing up, I didn't really like it too much," Kamana told the Casper Star-Tribune (http://bit.ly/1kjn1Gz). "Everybody in the whole state of Hawaii knew who my dad and my uncle and my grandpa were. So I would always hear, 'You have a big name to live up to. You have big shoes to fill.' And I didn't really like that.


"I kind of tried to just toss it under the bed. I didn't want to think about it too much."


Eventually, Kamana stopped running from his name. He embraced it. He held it up like a flag, a symbol of pride, a challenge he continued to chase.


Throughout his time at Punahou High School — the same school his uncle starred at — the safety with the long, black flowing locks competed against the team across the line, as well as ghosts — the Kamanas who came before him.


"I knew that I needed to make my own name for myself," Kamana said. "It's good to have that background, and it pushes me to be better. It pushes me to compete with what they've done to make myself a better player."


As 2012 national signing day arrived, Tim knew he wanted to follow in his family's footsteps in another way.


He wanted to leave "the rock."


He had Division I offers from three schools — Hawaii, Army and Wyoming. Wyoming's defensive coordinator, Chris Tormey, had showed up at Kamana's high school less than a week before signing day. He sat in Punahou's dean's office, and told Kamana he needed a safety.


Kamana would leave home, just like his father, uncle and grandfather had done before him. But Wyoming wasn't his initial destination.


"Ever since I was young, I always wanted to get away," Kamana said. "My parents always preached that to me, too. 'Home is always going to be home. Hawaii is always going to be there.' I love it, and I like to go back as much as possible. But at the same time, I had to get off the rock.


"You have to go and experience something different."


The following fall, Kamana arrived at the United States Military Academy in West Point, N.Y. Besides football, the world he knew was nearly 5,000 miles and an entire ocean away.


In a room full of people, Tim Kamana was alone.


The 5-foot-11 safety stood in a giant auditorium on the first day of basic training. To his right and left, families stuck together in packs, mothers and fathers hesitant to part ways with their children. Kamana was nervous, scared, a blip in the massive crowd. A speaker stood in front of the group and spoke for roughly 10 minutes.


The end was abrupt. For Kamana, it was shocking.


"They said, 'You have 60 seconds to say goodbye, and after 60 seconds I expect you to be lined up on the other side of the auditorium.' You just see all the moms and sisters start crying," Kamana said.


Kamana thought he knew what he signed up for. He was wrong. In a new world, he recognized little. Even football was a passing pleasure, 90 minutes of practice jammed into a day filled with structure and rigorous expectations.


While Kamana sees the value in what he went through, West Point wasn't for him. After a semester at the U.S. Military Academy Preparatory School, he was on the move again.


"I thought I had a really good feel for what it was going to be like," Kamana said. "But it's kind of one of those things where you really don't know what it's like until you get your feet in the mud."


Tim Kamana thought he knew what cold was.


In New York, he lived it. He endured his first snowstorm, a far cry from the 65-degree days in Hawaii that sent everyone he knew running for their jackets. He bundled up, and he adjusted.


But when he arrived in Laramie in spring 2012, "cold" received a new definition.


"I remember coach (Dave) Christensen would always tell me, 'I didn't tell you it was going to be warm when you came here,'" Kamana said with a chuckle. "But I was like, 'I didn't know it was going to be this cold!'"


The weather wasn't the only difference between school and home. In Wyoming, the towns are scattered across the map, separated by miles of bountiful terrain and open road. In Hawaii, nearly as many people live in his home town — Honolulu — as in the entire state of Wyoming.


Growing up, Kamana always knew he wanted to leave "the rock," to experience the world across the ocean. The challenge, however, was more than he bargained for.


"That first semester here was really hard for me. It was really difficult," Kamana said. "I was calling home probably two or three times a week to my parents, like, 'I don't know if this is for me.'"


His father understood, as did his uncle and grandfather. They had been there. They urged him to keep pushing.


Kamana redshirted during the 2013 season, and is now competing for one of Wyoming's starting spots at safety. After journeying across an ocean and then a country, Kamana, who is considered a redshirt freshman and has four years of eligibility left, is on the verge of arriving on the playing field in the Mountain West.


"He's a really physical football player," Wyoming safeties coach David Brown said during spring practice. "He's understanding the scheme at this point as we're wrapping up spring ball, so he's playing a lot faster. And he's a guy that's going to help us in the fall.


"He's going to play on every special teams unit and has a great chance to win a starting spot in the secondary."


In Wyoming's spring game on April 19, Kamana got the start at strong safety with the first-team defense. Midway through the second quarter, quarterback Sam Stratton fumbled after taking a hit from defensive end Sonny Puletasi.


Kamana saw the ball bouncing on the turf. Nose tackle Chase Appleby dove for it but missed. With his father watching in the crowd, Tim picked it up and sprinted 73 yards down the sideline and into the north end zone, while his teammates raised their hands and followed along behind him.


When he got there, Kamana wasn't alone. Sophomore cornerback Tim Hayes patted him on the helmet, and senior defensive end Riley Lange ran over and delivered an elated hug.


Plays like that are what brought Kamana here, just like his father, uncle and grandfather before him. And the camaraderie it induced is why he's here to stay.


"It's slowly growing on me more and more," Kamana said of Wyoming. "It's all about the people you hang around with and surround yourself with. And I feel like there's a lot of good people up here."


___


Information from: Casper (Wyo.) Star-Tribune, http://www.trib.com



Wyoming watercraft inspection training offered - Kota



CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - The Wyoming Game & Fish Department is holding a watercraft inspection training course for the public in Laramie and Cheyenne.


The department says it wants the public's help preventing the spread of aquatic invasive species that threaten boating areas.


The training will be held in Laramie on May 14 and Cheyenne on May 15.


People who bring a boat into Wyoming from March 1 through Nov. 30 are required to get an inspection before hitting the water.


The department says people with training can also be certified to inspect other watercraft.


Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.




Outdoor briefs - Laramie Boomerang


Jackalope 5K


The 13th annual Jackalope 5K is set for 10 a.m. today at Optimist Park. Registration is $25 before April 20 or $30 after and includes a technical T-shirt. Discounts for families and High Plains Harriers members are available. Proceeds will benefit Black Dog Animal Rescue. Awards will be given for top finishers and age-group winners, and door prizes will be given after the race. For more information, go to http://ift.tt/1lcBmcT.

Run Josh Run


A fundraiser for University of Wyoming’s chapter of Engineers Without Borders, Run Josh Run is a 24-hour fundraising event that’s scheduled to start at 10 a.m. today. Participants may collect pledges for laps completed by 10 a.m. Sunday. One runner, Dan Larson, will attempt to cover 100 miles during that time, while others will work as teams to see how many laps they can complete. Proceeds will benefit a clean-water project in Kenya. For more information, go to http://ift.tt/1i7RxVe.

Bark beetle video series to premier


A series of short videos about the effects of and responses to the recent mountain pine beetle outbreak is set to premier at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday at the University of Wyoming Berry Biodiversity Conservation Center. Admission is free. The videos were made by the U.S. Forest Service and the UW Ruckelshaus Institute of Environment and Natural Resources. They show impacted areas in the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forests and responses to the outbreak.


Game and Fish holds public meetings


The Wyoming Game and Fish Department plans to discuss proposed regulation changes at a series of meetings around the state. A meeting in Laramie is scheduled for 6 p.m. Thursday at the Laramie Regional Office, 528 S. Adams. Proposals include extending the deadline for nonresident regular and landowner deer and antelope applications. Proposed 2014 gray wolf hunt area mortality quotas will also be available. Written comments may be sent to WGFD, Regulations, 3030 Energy Lane, Casper, WY 82604. The comment deadline is 5 p.m. May 30. For more information, go to wgfd.wyo.gov.

BLM opens comment period


The Bureau of Land Management Rawlins Field Office opened a two-week comment period on its inventory of lands with wilderness characteristics. The inventory is being done for a visual resource management amendment to the 2008 Rawlins Resource Management Plan. Comments will be accepted that pertain to the inventory only. The Rawlins plan covers most of the eastern half of the Red Desert. The inventory is available online at www.blm.gov/wy. Comments must be submitted by May 2. They may be emailed to blm_wy_rl_rmp_vrm@blm.gov, faxed to (307) 328-4224 or mailed to BLM Rawlins Field Office, 1300 N. Third St., P.O. Box 2407, Rawlins, WY 82301. For more information, call Sheila Lehman at (307) 328-4264.

Forest service seeks comments


The U.S. Forest Service is seeking public comment on a proposal to treat non-native and invasive plants on the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forests and Thunder Basin National Grassland. The emphasis of the proposal is to use aerial herbicide application to control cheatgrass and other annual grasses on critical big-game winter ranges, and to enhance sagebrush on sage grouse habitat. A draft environmental impact statement is available online at http://ift.tt/1iANmOe. Written comments may be sent to: Forest Supervisor, 2468 Jackson, Laramie, WY 82070. Comments may be sent by fax to (307) 745-2398, or by email to: comments-rocky-mountain-medicine-bow-laramie@fs.fed.us. The comment period closes May 7. For more information, call Melissa Martin at 745-2371 or Misty Hays at (307) 358-7102.

Ambulance Chase 5K


The University of Wyoming College of Law Ambulance Chase 5K is scheduled for 9 a.m. May 3 at the Law School, located at the corner of 19th and Willett. Proceeds will benefit causes chosen by the graduating class and the Laramie Fire Department. Registration is $20 or $25 on race day and includes a T-shirt and refreshments. A pre-race packet pick-up is set for 5-8 p.m. May 2. For more information, go to www.active.com or call 766-6416.

Forest Service accepting funding applications


The U.S. Forest Service is accepting proposals to fund natural resource projects. Funding is provided for counties through the Medicine Bow-Routt Resource Advisory Committee, and the deadline is May 9. Projects should enhance forest ecosystems or restore and improve land health and water quality. For an application, contact coordinator Aaron Voos at 745-2323 or atvoos@fs.fed.us. Since its inception is 2009, the committee has approved more than $1 million in funding for projects in five counties.

JOIN THE DISCUSSION



Rules of Conduct


The Boomerang is a community newspaper. We encourage comments however posts that contain obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language will not be tolerated. Comments containing links, including third-party links, must be approved before they are published. The comments posted are not necessarily those of the Laramie Boomerang. If you have complaints, questions, or just feedback, please contact us.



comments powered by

Miami's Williams signs with Wyoming basketball - TheNewsTribune


— Tyrell Williams, of Miami, has signed to play college basketball at Wyoming.


Cowboys coach Larry Shyatt announced the signing the 6-foot-8, 225-pound power forward on Tuesday.


Williams completed his prep career this spring by helping Miami Norland capture its third straight Florida Class 6A state high school championship.


Williams averaged 7.2 points, 7.6 rebounds and 2.5 blocks per game as a senior, while shooting 59 percent from the field. He tallied five double-doubles during the season, including 11 points, 16 rebounds and five blocks in the state title game.


Williams is the third native from Miami to sign with the Cowboys under Shyatt, joining Jerron Granberry and Charles Hankerson Jr.



Hawaiian safety adjusts to life in Wyoming - Merced Sun-Star


— In Hawaii, "Kamana" means "football."


And football means leaving home. It started in 1953, when John "Squeeze" Kamana Jr. made the journey from Hawaii to California to play center at the University of Southern California. His twin sons, John III and Carter, each followed suit. John III, an agile tight end, played at his father's alma mater alongside future NFL Hall of Famers Ronnie Lott and Marcus Allen.


Carter settled in the Big Ten at Michigan State, where he became a standout at cornerback.


When Carter's son, Tim, was born, he inherited a lofty reputation. Football was a rite of passage, passed down from father to son. He was a Kamana, and it was only a matter of time until he would have to prove it.


"It was everything," Kamana said. "I wasn't going to go out and play tennis. I wasn't going to go out and play badminton. I was going to going to come out and play football."


For years on the island, Tim's last name hung over his head — a curse, a shadow, a silent expectation. He was a Kamana, and that meant that everyone knew him. They knew, too, what his family had accomplished.


He would play football, and he would excel. He had to. Anything less would feel like a departure from a proud tradition.


"Having that overshadow me a little bit when I was growing up, I didn't really like it too much," Kamana told the Casper Star-Tribune (http://bit.ly/1kjn1Gz). "Everybody in the whole state of Hawaii knew who my dad and my uncle and my grandpa were. So I would always hear, 'You have a big name to live up to. You have big shoes to fill.' And I didn't really like that.


"I kind of tried to just toss it under the bed. I didn't want to think about it too much."


Eventually, Kamana stopped running from his name. He embraced it. He held it up like a flag, a symbol of pride, a challenge he continued to chase.


Throughout his time at Punahou High School — the same school his uncle starred at — the safety with the long, black flowing locks competed against the team across the line, as well as ghosts — the Kamanas who came before him.


"I knew that I needed to make my own name for myself," Kamana said. "It's good to have that background, and it pushes me to be better. It pushes me to compete with what they've done to make myself a better player."


As 2012 national signing day arrived, Tim knew he wanted to follow in his family's footsteps in another way.


He wanted to leave "the rock."


He had Division I offers from three schools — Hawaii, Army and Wyoming. Wyoming's defensive coordinator, Chris Tormey, had showed up at Kamana's high school less than a week before signing day. He sat in Punahou's dean's office, and told Kamana he needed a safety.


Kamana would leave home, just like his father, uncle and grandfather had done before him. But Wyoming wasn't his initial destination.


"Ever since I was young, I always wanted to get away," Kamana said. "My parents always preached that to me, too. 'Home is always going to be home. Hawaii is always going to be there.' I love it, and I like to go back as much as possible. But at the same time, I had to get off the rock.


"You have to go and experience something different."


The following fall, Kamana arrived at the United States Military Academy in West Point, N.Y. Besides football, the world he knew was nearly 5,000 miles and an entire ocean away.


In a room full of people, Tim Kamana was alone.


The 5-foot-11 safety stood in a giant auditorium on the first day of basic training. To his right and left, families stuck together in packs, mothers and fathers hesitant to part ways with their children. Kamana was nervous, scared, a blip in the massive crowd. A speaker stood in front of the group and spoke for roughly 10 minutes.


The end was abrupt. For Kamana, it was shocking.


"They said, 'You have 60 seconds to say goodbye, and after 60 seconds I expect you to be lined up on the other side of the auditorium.' You just see all the moms and sisters start crying," Kamana said.


Kamana thought he knew what he signed up for. He was wrong. In a new world, he recognized little. Even football was a passing pleasure, 90 minutes of practice jammed into a day filled with structure and rigorous expectations.


While Kamana sees the value in what he went through, West Point wasn't for him. After a semester at the U.S. Military Academy Preparatory School, he was on the move again.


"I thought I had a really good feel for what it was going to be like," Kamana said. "But it's kind of one of those things where you really don't know what it's like until you get your feet in the mud."


Tim Kamana thought he knew what cold was.


In New York, he lived it. He endured his first snowstorm, a far cry from the 65-degree days in Hawaii that sent everyone he knew running for their jackets. He bundled up, and he adjusted.


But when he arrived in Laramie in spring 2012, "cold" received a new definition.


"I remember coach (Dave) Christensen would always tell me, 'I didn't tell you it was going to be warm when you came here,'" Kamana said with a chuckle. "But I was like, 'I didn't know it was going to be this cold!'"


The weather wasn't the only difference between school and home. In Wyoming, the towns are scattered across the map, separated by miles of bountiful terrain and open road. In Hawaii, nearly as many people live in his home town — Honolulu — as in the entire state of Wyoming.


Growing up, Kamana always knew he wanted to leave "the rock," to experience the world across the ocean. The challenge, however, was more than he bargained for.


"That first semester here was really hard for me. It was really difficult," Kamana said. "I was calling home probably two or three times a week to my parents, like, 'I don't know if this is for me.'"


His father understood, as did his uncle and grandfather. They had been there. They urged him to keep pushing.


Kamana redshirted during the 2013 season, and is now competing for one of Wyoming's starting spots at safety. After journeying across an ocean and then a country, Kamana, who is considered a redshirt freshman and has four years of eligibility left, is on the verge of arriving on the playing field in the Mountain West.


"He's a really physical football player," Wyoming safeties coach David Brown said during spring practice. "He's understanding the scheme at this point as we're wrapping up spring ball, so he's playing a lot faster. And he's a guy that's going to help us in the fall.


"He's going to play on every special teams unit and has a great chance to win a starting spot in the secondary."


In Wyoming's spring game on April 19, Kamana got the start at strong safety with the first-team defense. Midway through the second quarter, quarterback Sam Stratton fumbled after taking a hit from defensive end Sonny Puletasi.


Kamana saw the ball bouncing on the turf. Nose tackle Chase Appleby dove for it but missed. With his father watching in the crowd, Tim picked it up and sprinted 73 yards down the sideline and into the north end zone, while his teammates raised their hands and followed along behind him.


When he got there, Kamana wasn't alone. Sophomore cornerback Tim Hayes patted him on the helmet, and senior defensive end Riley Lange ran over and delivered an elated hug.


Plays like that are what brought Kamana here, just like his father, uncle and grandfather before him. And the camaraderie it induced is why he's here to stay.


"It's slowly growing on me more and more," Kamana said of Wyoming. "It's all about the people you hang around with and surround yourself with. And I feel like there's a lot of good people up here."


Information from: Casper (Wyo.) Star-Tribune, http://www.trib.com



Wyoming watercraft inspection training offered - Kota



CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - The Wyoming Game & Fish Department is holding a watercraft inspection training course for the public in Laramie and Cheyenne.


The department says it wants the public's help preventing the spread of aquatic invasive species that threaten boating areas.


The training will be held in Laramie on May 14 and Cheyenne on May 15.


People who bring a boat into Wyoming from March 1 through Nov. 30 are required to get an inspection before hitting the water.


The department says people with training can also be certified to inspect other watercraft.


Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.




Outdoor briefs - Laramie Boomerang


Jackalope 5K


The 13th annual Jackalope 5K is set for 10 a.m. today at Optimist Park. Registration is $25 before April 20 or $30 after and includes a technical T-shirt. Discounts for families and High Plains Harriers members are available. Proceeds will benefit Black Dog Animal Rescue. Awards will be given for top finishers and age-group winners, and door prizes will be given after the race. For more information, go to http://ift.tt/1lcBmcT.

Run Josh Run


A fundraiser for University of Wyoming’s chapter of Engineers Without Borders, Run Josh Run is a 24-hour fundraising event that’s scheduled to start at 10 a.m. today. Participants may collect pledges for laps completed by 10 a.m. Sunday. One runner, Dan Larson, will attempt to cover 100 miles during that time, while others will work as teams to see how many laps they can complete. Proceeds will benefit a clean-water project in Kenya. For more information, go to http://ift.tt/1i7RxVe.

Bark beetle video series to premier


A series of short videos about the effects of and responses to the recent mountain pine beetle outbreak is set to premier at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday at the University of Wyoming Berry Biodiversity Conservation Center. Admission is free. The videos were made by the U.S. Forest Service and the UW Ruckelshaus Institute of Environment and Natural Resources. They show impacted areas in the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forests and responses to the outbreak.


Game and Fish holds public meetings


The Wyoming Game and Fish Department plans to discuss proposed regulation changes at a series of meetings around the state. A meeting in Laramie is scheduled for 6 p.m. Thursday at the Laramie Regional Office, 528 S. Adams. Proposals include extending the deadline for nonresident regular and landowner deer and antelope applications. Proposed 2014 gray wolf hunt area mortality quotas will also be available. Written comments may be sent to WGFD, Regulations, 3030 Energy Lane, Casper, WY 82604. The comment deadline is 5 p.m. May 30. For more information, go to wgfd.wyo.gov.

BLM opens comment period


The Bureau of Land Management Rawlins Field Office opened a two-week comment period on its inventory of lands with wilderness characteristics. The inventory is being done for a visual resource management amendment to the 2008 Rawlins Resource Management Plan. Comments will be accepted that pertain to the inventory only. The Rawlins plan covers most of the eastern half of the Red Desert. The inventory is available online at www.blm.gov/wy. Comments must be submitted by May 2. They may be emailed to blm_wy_rl_rmp_vrm@blm.gov, faxed to (307) 328-4224 or mailed to BLM Rawlins Field Office, 1300 N. Third St., P.O. Box 2407, Rawlins, WY 82301. For more information, call Sheila Lehman at (307) 328-4264.

Forest service seeks comments


The U.S. Forest Service is seeking public comment on a proposal to treat non-native and invasive plants on the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forests and Thunder Basin National Grassland. The emphasis of the proposal is to use aerial herbicide application to control cheatgrass and other annual grasses on critical big-game winter ranges, and to enhance sagebrush on sage grouse habitat. A draft environmental impact statement is available online at http://ift.tt/1iANmOe. Written comments may be sent to: Forest Supervisor, 2468 Jackson, Laramie, WY 82070. Comments may be sent by fax to (307) 745-2398, or by email to: comments-rocky-mountain-medicine-bow-laramie@fs.fed.us. The comment period closes May 7. For more information, call Melissa Martin at 745-2371 or Misty Hays at (307) 358-7102.

Ambulance Chase 5K


The University of Wyoming College of Law Ambulance Chase 5K is scheduled for 9 a.m. May 3 at the Law School, located at the corner of 19th and Willett. Proceeds will benefit causes chosen by the graduating class and the Laramie Fire Department. Registration is $20 or $25 on race day and includes a T-shirt and refreshments. A pre-race packet pick-up is set for 5-8 p.m. May 2. For more information, go to www.active.com or call 766-6416.

Forest Service accepting funding applications


The U.S. Forest Service is accepting proposals to fund natural resource projects. Funding is provided for counties through the Medicine Bow-Routt Resource Advisory Committee, and the deadline is May 9. Projects should enhance forest ecosystems or restore and improve land health and water quality. For an application, contact coordinator Aaron Voos at 745-2323 or atvoos@fs.fed.us. Since its inception is 2009, the committee has approved more than $1 million in funding for projects in five counties.

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The Boomerang is a community newspaper. We encourage comments however posts that contain obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language will not be tolerated. Comments containing links, including third-party links, must be approved before they are published. The comments posted are not necessarily those of the Laramie Boomerang. If you have complaints, questions, or just feedback, please contact us.



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Wintry weather returns to I-80 outside Laramie - Kota



LARAMIE, Wyo. (AP) - Wintry weather is expected to plague Interstate 80 between Laramie and Cheyenne for the part of the week after a storm last weekend forced the highway to shut down for nearly 24 hours.


The Laramie Daily Boomerang reported Tuesday (http://ift.tt/S5Pqbu ) the Wyoming Highway Patrol responded to eight accidents on Sunday amid heavy snow, strong winds and poor visibility.


Tim McGary of the Wyoming Department of Transportation says none of the injuries was serious.


Wind gusts up to 45 mph were in the forecast for Tuesday, along with a chance of snow showers.


Snow or rain could fall again Friday.


Information from: Laramie Boomerang, http://ift.tt/1he4ElR


Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.




Hawaiian safety adjusts to life in Wyoming - The State


— In Hawaii, "Kamana" means "football."


And football means leaving home. It started in 1953, when John "Squeeze" Kamana Jr. made the journey from Hawaii to California to play center at the University of Southern California. His twin sons, John III and Carter, each followed suit. John III, an agile tight end, played at his father's alma mater alongside future NFL Hall of Famers Ronnie Lott and Marcus Allen.


Carter settled in the Big Ten at Michigan State, where he became a standout at cornerback.


When Carter's son, Tim, was born, he inherited a lofty reputation. Football was a rite of passage, passed down from father to son. He was a Kamana, and it was only a matter of time until he would have to prove it.


"It was everything," Kamana said. "I wasn't going to go out and play tennis. I wasn't going to go out and play badminton. I was going to going to come out and play football."


For years on the island, Tim's last name hung over his head — a curse, a shadow, a silent expectation. He was a Kamana, and that meant that everyone knew him. They knew, too, what his family had accomplished.


He would play football, and he would excel. He had to. Anything less would feel like a departure from a proud tradition.


"Having that overshadow me a little bit when I was growing up, I didn't really like it too much," Kamana told the Casper Star-Tribune (http://bit.ly/1kjn1Gz). "Everybody in the whole state of Hawaii knew who my dad and my uncle and my grandpa were. So I would always hear, 'You have a big name to live up to. You have big shoes to fill.' And I didn't really like that.


"I kind of tried to just toss it under the bed. I didn't want to think about it too much."


Eventually, Kamana stopped running from his name. He embraced it. He held it up like a flag, a symbol of pride, a challenge he continued to chase.


Throughout his time at Punahou High School — the same school his uncle starred at — the safety with the long, black flowing locks competed against the team across the line, as well as ghosts — the Kamanas who came before him.


"I knew that I needed to make my own name for myself," Kamana said. "It's good to have that background, and it pushes me to be better. It pushes me to compete with what they've done to make myself a better player."


As 2012 national signing day arrived, Tim knew he wanted to follow in his family's footsteps in another way.


He wanted to leave "the rock."


He had Division I offers from three schools — Hawaii, Army and Wyoming. Wyoming's defensive coordinator, Chris Tormey, had showed up at Kamana's high school less than a week before signing day. He sat in Punahou's dean's office, and told Kamana he needed a safety.


Kamana would leave home, just like his father, uncle and grandfather had done before him. But Wyoming wasn't his initial destination.


"Ever since I was young, I always wanted to get away," Kamana said. "My parents always preached that to me, too. 'Home is always going to be home. Hawaii is always going to be there.' I love it, and I like to go back as much as possible. But at the same time, I had to get off the rock.


"You have to go and experience something different."


The following fall, Kamana arrived at the United States Military Academy in West Point, N.Y. Besides football, the world he knew was nearly 5,000 miles and an entire ocean away.


In a room full of people, Tim Kamana was alone.


The 5-foot-11 safety stood in a giant auditorium on the first day of basic training. To his right and left, families stuck together in packs, mothers and fathers hesitant to part ways with their children. Kamana was nervous, scared, a blip in the massive crowd. A speaker stood in front of the group and spoke for roughly 10 minutes.


The end was abrupt. For Kamana, it was shocking.


"They said, 'You have 60 seconds to say goodbye, and after 60 seconds I expect you to be lined up on the other side of the auditorium.' You just see all the moms and sisters start crying," Kamana said.


Kamana thought he knew what he signed up for. He was wrong. In a new world, he recognized little. Even football was a passing pleasure, 90 minutes of practice jammed into a day filled with structure and rigorous expectations.


While Kamana sees the value in what he went through, West Point wasn't for him. After a semester at the U.S. Military Academy Preparatory School, he was on the move again.


"I thought I had a really good feel for what it was going to be like," Kamana said. "But it's kind of one of those things where you really don't know what it's like until you get your feet in the mud."


Tim Kamana thought he knew what cold was.


In New York, he lived it. He endured his first snowstorm, a far cry from the 65-degree days in Hawaii that sent everyone he knew running for their jackets. He bundled up, and he adjusted.


But when he arrived in Laramie in spring 2012, "cold" received a new definition.


"I remember coach (Dave) Christensen would always tell me, 'I didn't tell you it was going to be warm when you came here,'" Kamana said with a chuckle. "But I was like, 'I didn't know it was going to be this cold!'"


The weather wasn't the only difference between school and home. In Wyoming, the towns are scattered across the map, separated by miles of bountiful terrain and open road. In Hawaii, nearly as many people live in his home town — Honolulu — as in the entire state of Wyoming.


Growing up, Kamana always knew he wanted to leave "the rock," to experience the world across the ocean. The challenge, however, was more than he bargained for.


"That first semester here was really hard for me. It was really difficult," Kamana said. "I was calling home probably two or three times a week to my parents, like, 'I don't know if this is for me.'"


His father understood, as did his uncle and grandfather. They had been there. They urged him to keep pushing.


Kamana redshirted during the 2013 season, and is now competing for one of Wyoming's starting spots at safety. After journeying across an ocean and then a country, Kamana, who is considered a redshirt freshman and has four years of eligibility left, is on the verge of arriving on the playing field in the Mountain West.


"He's a really physical football player," Wyoming safeties coach David Brown said during spring practice. "He's understanding the scheme at this point as we're wrapping up spring ball, so he's playing a lot faster. And he's a guy that's going to help us in the fall.


"He's going to play on every special teams unit and has a great chance to win a starting spot in the secondary."


In Wyoming's spring game on April 19, Kamana got the start at strong safety with the first-team defense. Midway through the second quarter, quarterback Sam Stratton fumbled after taking a hit from defensive end Sonny Puletasi.


Kamana saw the ball bouncing on the turf. Nose tackle Chase Appleby dove for it but missed. With his father watching in the crowd, Tim picked it up and sprinted 73 yards down the sideline and into the north end zone, while his teammates raised their hands and followed along behind him.


When he got there, Kamana wasn't alone. Sophomore cornerback Tim Hayes patted him on the helmet, and senior defensive end Riley Lange ran over and delivered an elated hug.


Plays like that are what brought Kamana here, just like his father, uncle and grandfather before him. And the camaraderie it induced is why he's here to stay.


"It's slowly growing on me more and more," Kamana said of Wyoming. "It's all about the people you hang around with and surround yourself with. And I feel like there's a lot of good people up here."


Information from: Casper (Wyo.) Star-Tribune, http://www.trib.com



Outdoor briefs - Laramie Boomerang


Jackalope 5K


The 13th annual Jackalope 5K is set for 10 a.m. today at Optimist Park. Registration is $25 before April 20 or $30 after and includes a technical T-shirt. Discounts for families and High Plains Harriers members are available. Proceeds will benefit Black Dog Animal Rescue. Awards will be given for top finishers and age-group winners, and door prizes will be given after the race. For more information, go to http://ift.tt/1lcBmcT.

Run Josh Run


A fundraiser for University of Wyoming’s chapter of Engineers Without Borders, Run Josh Run is a 24-hour fundraising event that’s scheduled to start at 10 a.m. today. Participants may collect pledges for laps completed by 10 a.m. Sunday. One runner, Dan Larson, will attempt to cover 100 miles during that time, while others will work as teams to see how many laps they can complete. Proceeds will benefit a clean-water project in Kenya. For more information, go to http://ift.tt/1i7RxVe.

Bark beetle video series to premier


A series of short videos about the effects of and responses to the recent mountain pine beetle outbreak is set to premier at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday at the University of Wyoming Berry Biodiversity Conservation Center. Admission is free. The videos were made by the U.S. Forest Service and the UW Ruckelshaus Institute of Environment and Natural Resources. They show impacted areas in the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forests and responses to the outbreak.


Game and Fish holds public meetings


The Wyoming Game and Fish Department plans to discuss proposed regulation changes at a series of meetings around the state. A meeting in Laramie is scheduled for 6 p.m. Thursday at the Laramie Regional Office, 528 S. Adams. Proposals include extending the deadline for nonresident regular and landowner deer and antelope applications. Proposed 2014 gray wolf hunt area mortality quotas will also be available. Written comments may be sent to WGFD, Regulations, 3030 Energy Lane, Casper, WY 82604. The comment deadline is 5 p.m. May 30. For more information, go to wgfd.wyo.gov.

BLM opens comment period


The Bureau of Land Management Rawlins Field Office opened a two-week comment period on its inventory of lands with wilderness characteristics. The inventory is being done for a visual resource management amendment to the 2008 Rawlins Resource Management Plan. Comments will be accepted that pertain to the inventory only. The Rawlins plan covers most of the eastern half of the Red Desert. The inventory is available online at www.blm.gov/wy. Comments must be submitted by May 2. They may be emailed to blm_wy_rl_rmp_vrm@blm.gov, faxed to (307) 328-4224 or mailed to BLM Rawlins Field Office, 1300 N. Third St., P.O. Box 2407, Rawlins, WY 82301. For more information, call Sheila Lehman at (307) 328-4264.

Forest service seeks comments


The U.S. Forest Service is seeking public comment on a proposal to treat non-native and invasive plants on the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forests and Thunder Basin National Grassland. The emphasis of the proposal is to use aerial herbicide application to control cheatgrass and other annual grasses on critical big-game winter ranges, and to enhance sagebrush on sage grouse habitat. A draft environmental impact statement is available online at http://ift.tt/1iANmOe. Written comments may be sent to: Forest Supervisor, 2468 Jackson, Laramie, WY 82070. Comments may be sent by fax to (307) 745-2398, or by email to: comments-rocky-mountain-medicine-bow-laramie@fs.fed.us. The comment period closes May 7. For more information, call Melissa Martin at 745-2371 or Misty Hays at (307) 358-7102.

Ambulance Chase 5K


The University of Wyoming College of Law Ambulance Chase 5K is scheduled for 9 a.m. May 3 at the Law School, located at the corner of 19th and Willett. Proceeds will benefit causes chosen by the graduating class and the Laramie Fire Department. Registration is $20 or $25 on race day and includes a T-shirt and refreshments. A pre-race packet pick-up is set for 5-8 p.m. May 2. For more information, go to www.active.com or call 766-6416.

Forest Service accepting funding applications


The U.S. Forest Service is accepting proposals to fund natural resource projects. Funding is provided for counties through the Medicine Bow-Routt Resource Advisory Committee, and the deadline is May 9. Projects should enhance forest ecosystems or restore and improve land health and water quality. For an application, contact coordinator Aaron Voos at 745-2323 or atvoos@fs.fed.us. Since its inception is 2009, the committee has approved more than $1 million in funding for projects in five counties.

JOIN THE DISCUSSION



Rules of Conduct


The Boomerang is a community newspaper. We encourage comments however posts that contain obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language will not be tolerated. Comments containing links, including third-party links, must be approved before they are published. The comments posted are not necessarily those of the Laramie Boomerang. If you have complaints, questions, or just feedback, please contact us.



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Laura Nell Ellis - Casper Star-Tribune Online


Laura Nell Ellis, 74, of Saratoga passed away at her home on April 24, 2014 surrounded by her loving family after a courageous battle with cancer. Laura Nell was born on October 31, 1939 in Laramie, WY to Orval and Nellie White Wallis. She lived on various ranches in and around the Laramie area and moved to Saratoga in 1956 when her parents purchased the Campbell Ranch on Pass Creek.


In 1956 she met the love of her life, Don Ellis, at a dance in Valley Station. They were married in Laramie on November 10, 1957. They lived on the Ellis Ranch on Difficulty Creek until 1960 when they purchased the Matson Ranch where they ranched together until 1969 when they moved to Saratoga. While in Saratoga they owned and operated several businesses over the years including a motel, earth construction business, and John Deere Ag dealership. She went to work at the Platte Valley Medical Clinic and worked there for 24 years as the office manager. She retired in 2008.


Laura Nell was an incredible person who touched the lives of many people in her walk through life. Words are inadequate to describe her many talents and just how special she really was. She was a loving wife, mother, and grandmother who was devoted to caring for all. She will be missed by everyone who had the privilege of knowing her.


She is survived by her husband of 56 years, Don; daughters, Sue Jones (Wiley) of Encampment and Linda Platts (Scott) of Coeur d’Alene, ID; sons, Mike (Rita) Ellis of Medicine Bow and Joe Ellis of South Pass City, WY; grandchildren, Hazel Platts (Torrey Winfrey), Max Platts, Sam Platts, Emily Ellis, Jon Ellis, Jacob Ellis, Patrick Ellis, and Elizabeth Ellis; great-granddaughter, Tiana Winfrey; brother, Dan Wallis (Nancy) of Saratoga; and numerous nieces.


She was preceded in death by her parents and a son, Patrick Thomas Ellis.


Services will be held May 3rd at 2PM in the Platte Valley Community Center in Saratoga. Honorary pall bearers for the service will be Rodney Bennett, Powd Boles, Wiley Jones, Scott Platts, Steve Rose, and Terry Rummell.


Memorial contributions may be made to the Corbett Medical Foundation, PO Box 343, Saratoga, WY 82331 or the Meredith & Jeannie Ray Cancer Center, 255 N. 30th Street, Laramie, WY 82072.



Copyright 2014 Casper Star-Tribune Online. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.