Everyday Explorations: CSU’s Shepardson Building

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Apr 042013

Author: Kelsey Contouris

With a large portion of Colorado State’s academic buildings being located in the Center Avenue corridor from Engineering to Yates, it’s easy to forget about the buildings on the east side of campus that show the university’s true age. This week’s exploration took me to one of these older structures: the Shepardson Building.

Home to the College of Agricultural Sciences, the Shepardson Building is located on University Avenue just east of the Plant Sciences Building. Charles N. Shepardson, after whom the building is named, graduated from CSU in 1917 and taught animal husbandry (the practice of breeding and raising livestock) at CSU from 1920 to 1928. He died in 1975.

In comparison to Johnson Hall, the last building I explored, the Shepardson Building is much more spacious inside and far less confusing to navigate. Like many of the old buildings on campus, stepping inside seems to bring you decades into the past.

I entered Shepardson through two heavy wooden front doors into a hallway that spanned the width of the building. The opposite wall contained quite a few doors – bathroom doors, custodial doors, office doors, mysterious unmarked doors, and finally what I was looking for – stair doors.

Old desks crowd part of the hallway on the second floor.

Old desks crowd part of the hallway on the second floor.

The stairwell struck me as very large. Atop the first half-set of stairs was a door to a tiny balcony overlooking the east side of the Monfort Quad area. Unfortunately, it was locked – cool balconies always seem to be there just to tease people. I continued up to the second floor and found a hallway much like the first, yet this one was far more interesting.

Much of the second floor appeared to be dedicated to miscellaneous furniture storage, but as I walked farther down the hall, I discovered that it also must be home to the landscape architecture department. Stunningly detailed models and drawings lined the walls – there were cardboard designs of water features, spiny wooden jellyfish sculptures and various other futuristic-looking pieces. It all seemed so out of place in such an old building, let alone in the agriculture building.

A model of a jellyfish sculpture

A model of a jellyfish sculpture.

Having been impressed with the second floor of Shepardson, I figured I might as well check out the third. Sadly, I encountered a locked door at the top of the stairs with a note giving numbers to call if you needed to be let in. Not wanting to be a nuisance, I decided to explore the basement instead.

When I entered the basement from the east set of stairs, I found another area of furniture storage with a few random locked doors. Since the middle of the basement was some kind of research lab (also locked), I had to go up to the first floor to get to the west stairs and back to the basement. I encountered more locked doors in the main section of the basement, and when I turned to go back upstairs I saw a spooky white door with a screen leading to the dark space under the stairs. Hoping to find something mysterious and exciting, I got out a flashlight and looked through the screen – just boxes and pipes.

The locked door leading to a storage area under the stairs

The locked door leading to a storage area under the stairs.

Having seen all that I had access to, I walked outside to go to my first class of the day. I felt sad after seeing that so much of the space in Shepardson seemed left to storage and basically forgotten. However, it’s an exciting prospect – if the same is true for all of the old buildings on campus, we essentially have a treasure trove of history right in our backyard. I can walk into almost any building and find the past preserved within its walls – so long as the doors aren’t locked.

Papagoya Live at KCSU

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Apr 012013

Author: Nicole Beale

Papagoya played a live set on KCSU on Wednesday, March 27. They busted out an acoustic set, something that they had

Papagoya playing at KCSU. Photo by Nicole Beale.

Papagoya playing at KCSU. Photo by Nicole Beale.

never done before. It was quite the treat for both listeners and for those few witnessing their performance.

Papagoya has an eclectic sound that is as unique as they are. They consider themselves to be in the genre of jungle funk.  For their shows, Papagoya uses electric instruments, creating a different sound than what was heard on KCSU. However, they create an extremely unique sound by combining an odd arrangement of instruments and exposing their culture. Tobias Bank, a member of Papagoya, hails from Sweden. The name ‘Papagoya’ is a play on a Swedish word ‘Papegoja’, meaning ‘Parrot’.

During their acoustic performance on KCSU, Papagoya had five out of their six members and featured an upright bass, slide guitar, an accordion, and a suitcase kick drum. Yes, it was actually a suitcase. Drummer, Tobias Bank, decided to travel smart by packing his bass drum in a suitcase. In fact the drum itself was a suitcase. After their set, Bank was able to put all of the pedals and cymbals he used right into the suitcase and out he went. It created a very low and short sound, adding to Papagoya’s uniqueness.

Papagoya began the night by playing El Pollo Loco and then played Wash Away that featured Colin Boyle on slide guitar. Their third song, Gypsy Kings, was sung in Spanish by Dimitri Zaugg and then the band played Dealin’ with D’s Bedtime. That song title came about because the band was always forced to rehearse early due to Dimitiri Zaugg’s early bedtime. After a slew of callers called in, including one listening in New Zealand, the band decided to play an encore which was called Show ‘em How Good We Do. The band also threw in a few snippets of the songs from their EP, titled Symatree, that was released in August of 2012.

Papagoya are locals from Fort Collins gaining in popularity. They have secured several shows for the summer making it easy to check them out.  Papagoya’s next show will be at FoCoMX and then Wakarusa May 30 to June 3. To get a better feel for what these guys sound like, check out the live recording of the set at KCSU.



Everyday Explorations: CSU’s S. Arthur Johnson Hall

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Mar 282013

Author: Kelsey Contouris

Take a walk around Colorado State University’s famous Oval and you will see some of the oldest structures on campus. Each building has its own story, and like the books in the library, they preserve decades and decades of history. My most recent exploration took me to one of the more peculiar of such buildings: Johnson Hall.

Located on the southeast corner of the Oval, Johnson Hall was built in 1935 and originally housed the Student Union. Its namesake, S. Arthur Johnson, was the first Dean of Students and an entomology professor. The building is now home to several administrative offices and classrooms.

I had always been curious about Johnson Hall. Its architecture resembles few other buildings on campus – the rounded portions of the exterior, arching doorways and castle-like appearance makes it stand out from its Oval counterparts.

The south entrance of Johnson Hall

The south entrance of Johnson Hall

I first entered Johnson Hall from the south side, which is where signs direct students to go if they are looking for Room 222. I was greeted by a somewhat odd commons area. The scattered stone benches looked better suited for the outdoors, as did the roofed, window-like structure jutting out from the wall separating the commons and a small classroom.

The main focal point of the commons, however, is a sprawling timeline mural on the north wall that details the origins of CSU’s most significant buildings, from the humble Claim Building erected in 1874 to the Rocky Mountain Regional Bio-containment Lab constructed in 2007. I stopped for a while and studied the timeline, taking pictures of the plaques and peering into the university’s rich architectural history. I urge you to go take a look at it if you’re interested in when and why much of CSU was developed.

The Johnson Commons

The south commons area

While I was in the commons, I figured I might as well see what was so special about Room 222, considering the prominent signage outside and in. Unsure if a class was in session, I opened the door cautiously. Luckily, the room was empty. And dark. And massive – much more so than I had imagined. And, unlike most large lecture halls, it was flat. I shot the best photo I could considering the lack of light and went back out into the commons.

The end of the dark, creepy hallway

The end of the dark, creepy hallway

On the west side of the commons I saw a doorway leading to the restrooms. I entered it, and to my right was a long hallway so dark that I could barely make out the signs on the doors. Slightly creeped-out and armed with only the flash of my camera, I made my way through it. The hallway opened up into an area that looked like it had been untouched for years – light from the single window exposed dusty cabinets, while the opposite wall was littered with the remains of old posters. The hallway seemed to lead to a dead end – a random half-door atop a small set of stairs. Thoroughly confused and afraid of getting lost, I decided it was time to leave the dark hallway and see what I could find on the north side of the building.

Unsure of how to access the north side from the interior of Johnson Hall, I went outside and walked around the building. Upon going in and seeing doorways to several offices and hallways leading to classrooms, I felt more at ease. That changed, however, when I started to venture up the stairs.

The narrow, twisting stairway took me to the second floor, which opened up to an office-like space. Not wanting to confuse the guy at the desk with my tourist-like photography, I quickly left and continued up the stairs. The third floor had some restrooms and a door that led to a space overlooking the office-like area. Surprisingly though, the stairs kept going. I followed them until they led me to nothing but a mysterious door – cracked open, yet fitted with a heavy-duty lock. In hindsight, I wish I had tried to peer inside, but my uneasiness got the best of me again and I made my way back to the first floor.

The locked door at the top of the stairs

The locked door at the top of the stairs

Aside from somehow finding another entrance to Room 222, there was not much else to see in Johnson Hall. I’m sure there are more discoveries lurking in its dark rooms and passageways, but that is an exploration for another day (and a braver student). I look forward to venturing through more of CSU’s oldest buildings – especially Ammons Hall, considering the spooky rumors I’ve heard.

Maybe I’ll take a friend with me on that one.

Tattoos in Fort Collins

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Mar 242013

Author: Nicole Beale

By the looks of things, Fort Collins is getting inked. There are over 10 tattoo shops in the immediate Fort Collins area and the number is continuing to grow. Some of these shops are booked with appointments for up to six months.  Many popular shops include Freakshow, La Familia, Covenant, Black Atlas, Tribal Rites, and the list goes on.

Lizz Wilson, Colorado State undergraduate student, says she wouldn’t recommend any other place but Freakshow Tattoo. She has three tattoos that were done at Freakshow, including a shoulder and two ankle tats. She has enjoyed her experience every time.

“Everyone in the shop is really excited to be there. It makes you feel good and excited to get a tattoo from there,” Wilson said. “Everyone was so professional and made me feel comfortable when I was uneasy.”

lizz's tats

Lizz Wilson’s tattoos from Freakshow Tattoo shop.
Photo by Lizz Wilson

According to Tribal Rites piercer, Hayley Berendt, Tribal Rites tries to make their store warm and inviting, something that is hard to do when it comes to the cold needle.  The store is splashed with a post-apocalyptic look. The tables are made of metal welded together with blue and green lights glowing through them. It gives the store an edgy feel and makes customers feel good when they come in.  Tribal Rites prides themselves on offering excellent customer service and making sure each customer leaves happy.

Tribal Rites resident tattoo artist Erick Erickson says that Tribal Rites is the place to be because so much love is put into what they do.

“Both of my parents were artists professionally. I grew up doing all kinds of art and it lead to me majoring in graphic design. Did that for a year before I realized I hated doing it. I then started tattooing and doing what I love,” said Erick Erickson. “I had a mentor I trained under for several years and have been tattooing for 12 years now.” Each tattoo artist at Tribal Rites has extensive experience and is able to conjure up whatever is imaginable.

Covenant Tattoo shop has been growing so much they had to relocate. Covenant relocated to a more central location in Fort Collins, along College Avenue, making the trip that much more convenient.

Many of these parlors cater to the student public and offer special deals and coupons on a seasonal basis. Many shops will put discounts in coupon books given out each semester. Keep an eye out for local deals if you’re looking to get tattooed in Fort Collins.

Everyday Explorations: CSU’s William E. Morgan Library

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Mar 212013

Author: Kelsey Contouris

I still remember the first time I visited the Morgan Library – a vast, furniture-filled maze of bookshelves preserving decades of knowledge and history in one massive, modernized building. I was in awe. The wonder stayed with me each time I came back, venturing farther into the library’s depths and discovering more and more that it had to offer.

After being at CSU for more than a semester, I feel like I know the library fairly well. Maybe not every nook and cranny, but I’ve stumbled upon a number of tucked-away areas seemingly unknown to the rest of the student body – especially at 7:30 in the morning. Nonetheless, the Morgan Library continues to surprise me.

I recently decided to do some exploring on the south side of the library where the other main staircase is located. The first floor being no more than textbooks and reference materials, I walked up to the second floor to see what new treasures I could uncover.

In many of my library adventures, I’ve noticed that the best discoveries come from walking between the bookshelves rather than through the main walkways. Upon reaching the second floor, I decided to do just that. What I found on the far west wall were two large wooden sets of small drawers with a sign across the top that read, “Government Documents shelf list. Filed by call number.” Each drawer was full of index cards with information about the location of everything from government educational studies to military documents. What struck me was the age of the whole thing – the yellowed cards, the dated font, the slightly weathered drawers. It felt like peering into a grandparent’s personal file cabinet, except this information was probably much more important.

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A drawer from the government documents shelf list

Once I became bored of looking at the small cards, I made my way back to the staircase and went up to the third floor. It was there that I made perhaps my favorite library discovery yet.

If you’ve been to the south side of the third floor, you’re probably familiar with what many call the “furniture room.” The semicircular sofas and sleek coffee tables are enough to amaze anybody (and to attract a few tired students). A cozy cavern, yes, but my most recent explorations led me to something even better.

On the west side of the furniture room, just past the staircase, is room 302: the living room. I had never bothered to open either of the two doors before because from the outside the room doesn’t look much different from the rest of the space – just a bunch of furniture, yet most of it is red. The room’s real treasure is what you can’t see from the outside.

When I walked through the door, the first thing that struck me was the great view of the mountains. Then I turned around and saw the wall behind me – three large, oddly-shaped holes were carved out of it to provide seating. Two of them had tables and one was for lying down. I’d never seen anything like it.

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The three wall seats in the living room

I was suddenly really glad I had gone in the strange red room, and I immediately sat in one of the wall seats. The library being so deserted early in the morning, I felt like I was in a secret hideout.

However, no matter how isolated you feel on campus, somebody else is bound to know about your spot. After being in the room for just a few minutes, another girl came in and sat down in one of the wall seats. So much for a secret hideout. At least I can still say that I have a new favorite place in the library now.

For those of you who are not very familiar with the Morgan Library, it’s well worth exploring. In fact, any building on campus is worth exploring – even those you have no reason to visit. It doesn’t matter if you’ve been at CSU for several months or several years – you may be pleasantly surprised when you take some time to seek out the unfamiliar in this oh-so-familiar place.

Too School for Cool: Keeping your ex-beau as a buddy

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Mar 152013

Author: Allison LeCain

Ex-boyfriends – we all have them.  Some you may want to hide from, while others may be worth keeping around.  As long as one of you didn’t screw up big time in the relationship, breaking up doesn’t have to mean never seeing each other again.  Many people tell horror stories about how disastrous it was trying to be friends with their ex-boyfriend, but that’s probably because they weren’t following the rules.

While being friends with an ex can work, it certainly doesn’t mean the same thing as being friends with just anyone.  The fact that the two of you have been intimate changes the dynamics of the friendship. This rarely means that the two of you can spend all day together, multiple times a week, trading stories and sharing a beer. You will probably never be quite as buddy-buddy as that. But this friendship can mean that you are on good terms, post a “Happy Birthday” message on each other’s Facebook wall, and even hang out occasionally. Here’s how it’s done.

Get Some Space

The most important rule of thumb after a break up is to take some time apart. Don’t call him, don’t text him – don’t have any form of contact with your ex-boyfriend for a few months. Just because you are broken up does not mean that the romantic charge of the relationship has vanished. This will give time to not only get over him, but evaluate whether or not he is worth having a friendship with.

Generally this process takes a couple of months. A good rule to go by is if you get extremely jealous or sad at the thought of your ex-boyfriend having a new woman is his life, you are not ready to be friends.

Don’t consider having a friendship with an ex who has cheated or was abusive in anyway. These people are not worth keeping around and your time will be better used finding new people that will make you happier.

Take it Slow

"Don't bring baggage from an ex-relations...

True story. (Photo credit: deeplifequotes)

When you and your ex-beau decide it’s time to try to be friends, don’t jump in right where you left off. Take things slow by only seeing each other occasionally to ease your way into this new friendship. Don’t get too personal right away because this is where it can get tricky.

When you’re friends with an ex it can be very easy to fall into the ‘friends with benefits’ category, which is not a healthy situation for most people. By establishing normal friendship boundaries, you will be able to keep your ex-beau in your life while still being emotionally ready for romance with a new guy.

When It’s Over, It’s Over

After a break-up, you can’t hold on to the past. If you truly want to get back together with your ex, then make that perfectly clear. Do not use a friendship as an excuse to see your ex, hoping that he will change his mind, stringing you along as you

When you’re ready to just be friends with an ex-boyfriend, keep a close watch on your emotions as to not let the relationship drag on in its half-life. That way you can truly enjoy each others company in a friendly way and not suffer any emotional damage.

Too School for Cool: A former vegetarian’s best burgers

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Mar 082013

Author: Allison LeCain

Burger and fries at Larkburger. Photo by John Sheesley.

Burger and fries at Larkburger. Photo by John Sheesley.

A wise man once said that bacon is the number one killer of vegetarians. He spoke the truth, as bacon was the first meat I ate after being a vegetarian for five years.

As I ate that deliciously crunchy strip of bacon, served to me on a white, cracked plate at IHOP, I thought to myself, “Oh holy god of meat, what have I been missing all these years? This has to be the best thing I’ve ever tasted!” That is, until I tried a bacon burger.

Whoever thought of the magnificent combination that is bacon and a beef patty on a bun must have been a genius. At first it seemed overwhelming for me, a former veg-head, to be consuming two types of meat at once, but when I let go of my worries and took that first bight, it was like reliving my first bacon strip all over again.

Where did I get this burger you may ask? Stuft Burger Bar. Located on College Avenue in Old Town Fort Collins, you can get any combination of amazing burger toppings that you can imagine. You even get to pick from 15 sauces and six types of buns.

The topping choices are what make each burger at Stuft the best burger you’ve ever had, but the burger itself also tastes great. This makes Stuft a tough burger to beat, and my number one burger choice in town.

Coming in second is Larkburger. While they may not have the topping selection of their competitor, their burgers are seasoned to perfection. They also serve truffle burgers and fries, making them unique.

When I’m in the mood for some meat and peanuts, I go to Five Guys Burgers and Fries. I don’t think the quality or selection of burgers are as good as its competitors, but its funky vibe and peanut gallery still makes it my third choice for burgers.

Bacon will always be my first love as an omnivore, but I find that it’s consumed best with its friend – the cow.


Mar 042013

Author: Nicole Beale

Our very own Fort Collins venue, the Aggie, housed sell out disc jockey duo, Savoy, on Feb. 22, 2013. Last summer Savoy headlined their own Red Rocks show.  To have such a performance in the Aggie that holds only 650 people made this show a must see.

Savoy decided on a Live with Lasers tour, hitting several small venues around Colorado along the way. Savoy showed up in Boulder, Aspen and Fort Collins. Each of these venues holds less than 1,000 people. Savoy calls Colorado home and wanted to make this Colorado run special, according to their many posts on Facebook, getting everyone hyped for the sellout shows.

Keeping it as local as they can, Savoy had two openers, both from Colorado. Bass Physics kicked-off the night and got the party started. They consider themselves to be in the genre of “electronic-soul” music. They incorporated several different instruments into their set, including acoustic guitar, electric guitar and keyboards.

The next opener was J Flash, hailing from Boulder. J Flash is an electro/house DJ that set the tone for the rest of the night. J Flash got everyone jumping and on their feet. It was a bouncy style of music that everyone seemed to enjoy. He was successful in getting everyone hyped to see Savoy.

Anyone that knows Savoy knows Savoy’s lasers. During this Live with Lasers tour, they brought out some new, heavy laser machines that lit up the Aggie like never before. Savoy did something special for the Aggie that is not incorporated into every show. Savoy has DJ sets with two DJs mixing on stage, but they also do a live set with a drummer. It adds a whole new element to their shows and makes it that much more exciting.

Savoy came on with confidence and started the show off with a bang. They began the buildup and as soon as the beat dropped the lasers came on leaving everyone screaming and in awe.  Lasers lit up every inch of the Aggie, flooding it with thousands of colors going in every direction.  Savoy played several songs from their new EP, “Personal Legend,” but they also brought out some old school hits like “Automatic.” Savoy played until the wee hours of the morning, and when they were done, the people weren’t. The crowd brought them back for an encore.

Leaving the show, many people were discussing how awesome of a show it was and how they couldn’t believe that Savoy played at the Aggie. It was an amazing show for everyone who got to experience it. If you didn’t get to, check out the links below.




Too School for Cool: Wash-out your Facebook

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Feb 262013

Author: Allison LeCain

As a graduating senior, I’ve been applying for a plethora of jobs lately. This generally requires sending someone a cover letter, resume and writing clips. Sadly I know that the investigation process probably doesn’t end there.

According to a 2012 survey by CareerBuilder, 37 percent of companies investigate potential employees using social media. More than 65 percent of these companies will look through Facebook profiles, which is why I think the new app, Facewash, is going to be a great resource for anyone trying to find employment.

Facewash is an app created by Camden Fullmer, Daniel Gur and David Steinberg. The idea of the app is to get rid of any content on your profile that you might not want a future employer to see. It is possible to simply clean out a profile manually by going through your timeline and deleting inappropriate statuses and photos, but Facewash handles this process for you.

Profile shown on Thefacebook in 2005

Profile shown on Thefacebook in 2005 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Yahoo! Finance explained in an article about the new app that Facewash flags swear words and sexual and racist language that appears in statuses, comments, likes, and links on your page. Currently the app will only flag a photo as inappropriate if the tags or comments for the photo imply it as such. For example, if there is a photo of you chugging beer at a party and the caption says “getting wasted on a Tuesday”, then Facewash will flag it. However, if there are not comments, a photo like this won’t get flagged. Never fear though, because Facewash is stilling under development and soon will be able to flag photos with red cups and beer bottles.

Using Facewash can help your profile to be ready for employer approval. Currently the app is free to use, so why not try it? In general I’ve tried to keep my Facebook very professional during my college years, but sometimes things slip in. Facewash is like hiring a little assistant to clean up your mistakes.

Colorado DJ plays at AV Dining Hall

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Feb 252013

Author: Nicole Beale

Any college student that eats at the dining hall knows the special theme nights are not to be missed. Aside from the rare, delicious cheesecake and the hot chocolate bar, there were a few other things that made this night at the good ol’ dining hall a great one.

Academic Village Dining Hall asked Colorado DJ and former employee Aaron Holsapple to play a set during the diner service. Holsapple plays under the name Cualli and has played several Denver venues including Cervantes Masterpiece Ballroom.

“I graduated from Colorado State University in 2010 for philosophy and English,”Cualli said. “I worked at AV during my years there. The mangers liked my music and asked me to play that night.”The music added a great feel to the dining hall and made it fun to eat there. The mood was upbeat and people seemed to truly enjoy themselves.

Cualli was set up in the middle of the hall so it was easy to see and hear his long guitar riffs mixed with electronic beats.

“I have never been able to categorize my music into a genre,”Cualli said. “I feel I can express myself deeper through music and it’s my own style that comes out.”

The beautiful guitar that Cualli was plucking at with precision is a Gibson ES 137.

“I love that guitar,”Cualli said. “I was a freshman in college when I received that one, but I’ve been playing since my parents bought me my first guitar in fifth grade.”

Holsapples’ main focus is his Cualli project, but he plays in two other bands. One is called the YuYu’s, which is a collaboration between Cualli and Omega, another Colorado DJ. The YuYu’s are a funky, mid-tempo-type group.

The other project Holsapple is involved is called Real Life Actual, which has a more rock-and-roll feel to it.

You can catch Cualli perfomring on March 15 at Cervantes Masterpiece Ballroom in Denver.

Holsapple wants his music to be heard. So he offers a lot of his music  for free.

Cualli: http://cuallimusic.com/

Yuyu: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=214872515319893&set=t.1100267657&type=1&theater#!/TheYuyuMusic