Mad Dog's thought for the day: Two things define you. Your patience when you have nothing, and your attitude when you have everything --- author unknown

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“ When you run an off road race car, you put your foot to the floor and one of two things happen. You either win or you die. “
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Unnecessary brouhaha halts good times in Duck Creek
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Duck Creek Village's dance hall has been the site of many good times, but no more -- at least for now.

       DUCK CREEK, Utah – Long-time Duck Creek resident Mel Aldrich just happens to be related to Country Western singer Dolly Parton, and he might want to contact the legendary performer to see if she wouldn’t mind traveling to this tiny community.

        Parton made the line “Well, this is just a little Payton place and you’re all Harper Valley hypocrites” a hit lyric that would seemingly fit well in Duck Creek where a unique dance hall has been red-tagged since June.

        It seems the dance hall’s wild success four times a year (it was originally planned as a platform to show furniture for sale) drew the ire of Kane County officials who are miffed about various items such as failure to secure proper permits.

        Add in concerns that so-called overflow crowds are going to overflow the septic system, and you have yourself a Dolly Parton song that is sure to put Duck Creek on the map.

        On one side, you have Kane County commissioner Daniel Hulett along with Gary Smith, who serves as an administrator land use authority of the county.

        On the other side of the controversy are local business folks Rudy Delapaz and his fiancé, Cindy Allen, who at last tally had lost something like $32,000 fighting the issue and we have ourselves a real Hatfield-McCoy showdown.

        I started making calls, and Hulett admitted the situation was embarrassing although he also alluded that things could be worked out.

        Smith quickly told me he didn’t have time to talk and instead informed me that he needed my questions faxed or emailed him apparently so someone else can review them. For the record, I had not heard back from Smith several days after formally submitting the questions suggesting (a) he was so busy he hasn't been able to check his email; (b) his bosses informed him that he needed to avoid involvement considering this seems to be a popular way for beaurocrats to address the concerns of the citizens; and/or (c) my questions were automatically directed to Smith's junk mail, which he never checks anyway.

        For the past three years, Allen and Delapaz have presented special events in Duck Creek featuring Roger Olcott’s CW band Muddy Boots and about now, everyone is going to need hip boots to get through the cow dung so deep that ATVs are getting stuck in the village.

        For the record, when Delapaz installed three 10 by 12 buildings, he didn’t need permits. However, when he added plumbing and electrical without first securing permits, someone in the village reportedly squealed and the special events have been replaced with a controversy so intense Dolly is probably getting ready to release “Duck Creek PTA.”

        As of late last week, we had an old-fashioned standoff since a Labor Day gathering was cancelled with no end in sight to this made-for-Hee Haw drama.

        Olcott, who makes his living as a Farmers Insurance agent in Cedar City, is at his wits end.

        “It’s just really sad,” he said. “I always count on the Labor Day event because it’s my chance to say goodbye for the summer to all my friends. Because of what’s going on, we missed that chance this summer.”

        What? A common sense look at the situation?

        C’mon people. Get your heads out and fix this thing before even more Utah authorities show up and call in the therapists from the Mental Health Division.

        And if Mental Health shows up, Billy Currington will be with them singing “God is great; beer is good; and people (in Duck Creek) are crazy.”

        I mean, this ain’t brain surgery. I know because I had a chunk of my brain removed 15 years ago and I’m thinking better with less brain cells than those of you who have a full load.

        Mike Henle is a Las Vegas freelance writer and the author of “Through the Darkness: One Man’s Fight to Overcome Epilepsy.” He can be contacted at


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