A 2017 Retrospective / by Jefferson Geiger


By most accounts 2017 was an ever-burning garbage fire. Each whirlwind week felt like a month and the year's worth of news events could rewrite all of "We Didn't Start the Fire," instead of being an additional verse. But it wasn't all bad. In my first full year at the Valley Courier I wrote a lot and I wish to share a fraction of that with you. While I don't want to belittle everything else going on, hopefully I can distract you with a bit of good news.

Here are my top 10 articles, columns and moments of the year. Click on the title or picture to read.

10. There's no theater like live theater

The column may be about plays and musicals I saw in 2016, but the sentiment still stands.

9. CU Denver begins Valley opioid study

It's not exactly uplifting to hear about a drug-related study in your neck of the woods, but hopefully this leads to a solution.

8. Community comes together to construct a mural

It only takes a brief look at my clips to know I love writing about the arts. It was wonderful to report on such a cool initiative happening in a small town.

7. Rotary students reflect on time abroad

Interviewing students following their passions and expanding their horizons is always a delight.

6. 'Master of None' is the show of my generation

The reference to "Louie" in the column is unfortunately a bit dated. Nevertheless, this show is a masterpiece.

5. Square Peg Brewerks brings home GABF gold

Photo © 2017 Jason E. Kaplan.

Photo © 2017 Jason E. Kaplan.

I may not be writing about beer as much as I did in college, but I still love writing about the industry. I also love it when a brewery wins a medal the same year it opens.

4. Sarah Sellman premieres SLV-based pilot at Denver Film Festival

I still can't believe that a former classmate of mine is working on a television show with Rose McGowan about the San Luis Valley. I also can't believe that I wrote about the project, went to the live reading at the Denver Film Festival and snapped some photos.

3. Remembering Reed's Room

I lost a wonderful friend and mentor this year. In March I dedicated my weekly column to him. Rest in peace, Reed.

2. Man marathons at Great Sand Dunes

I was able to write this article out of sheer luck. I happened to catch his adventure on the evening news, saw that he hadn't gone to the Great Sand Dunes yet and reached out. It was then picked up by the Associated Press and published in The Denver Post.

1. Colorado Press Association

It's not an article, but being validated for my hard work by other journalists takes the top spot this year. Technically the photos are from 2016, and only a few months at that, but winning second place at the Colorado Press Association in 2017 is hard to beat. I submitted a new portfolio, along with other work, to the contest again this year. Hopefully something similar will happen in 2018. Thank you for reading and thanks for your support.

You can read 2016's list here.