animated flame

Official Site for the Crystal Park Volunteer Fire Department
and the Crystal Park Metropolitan District

animated flame


2014 News and Events

Event Calendar                                                     CPFD Monthly Reports















Dick O'Brien accepts the statue as firefighter of the year to the approval (and votes!) of all of his peers. This is the second time Dick has been chosen for this award.

Dick is the guy in the department that can be counted on every time there is an incident or a need for truck checks or a project or a training. He is there. He also always knows what is going on:
"Talk to Dick" "Call Dick"


2014 Annual Christmas Dinner

The Annual Dinner was well attended with special guests from Manitou Springs Fire Department, Chief John Forsett, Captain Randy Perkins and Lt. Brad Dorris. Thanks to Kim Leander and the Auxiliary for setting up a delicious dinner at the restaurant "Dat's Italian!" in Old Colorado City.


CPFD firefighters were paged out at 12:36 am Saturday morning November 8th for a structure fire at the top of Lady Bug Lane. The structure was initially filled with smoke, giving the occupant time to get out safely....but soon erupted into flame. CPFD, Manitou Springs FD, Ft. Carson, Colorado Springs FD, Green Mountain Falls FD, Colorado Springs Utilities and El Paso Wildland responded. CPFD manned the front line hoses; MSFD managed water operations and El Paso Wildland covered forested areas below the fire to put out all hotspots and burning embers in the trees and on the ground. Frequent water runs to fill tenders and a port-a-tank were made. The house was a total loss: In Crystal Park, it will always be a priority to keep the fire from spreading to the wildland and to other homes using our limited water availablity.

Crystal Park Firefighters poured water on the fire throughout Saturday, Sunday and into Monday. After that, CPFD scheduled 24 hour fire watches and later periodic fire checks until the fire was completely out...which did not occur until the following Thursday.

We wish to thank all the departments that responded...your help and support were invaluable. And a big shoutout to civilian Chuck Lavezzi who used his ATV to provide all kinds of support to CPFD, from ferrying firefighters up the steep driveways, to making fuel runs, to delivering drinking water to firefighters.

CPFD Responds to Traffic Accident in Lower Park

On Tuesday, October 7, CPFD responded to a traffic accident in the lower park. There were no injuries because scrub oak kept the truck from rolling down the hill. Speed and bright morning sun may have been a factor in this crash. As always, please obey the speed limit in Crystal Park.



Another Successful Fundraiser!  

Same great deal:

A $20 pizza for $10



Annual Pancake Breakfast Attracts Crystal Park Residents

Chief Welsch thanks everyone for attending and for their support of the CPFD


four new EMT's

Erin Davitt, Joan Powers, Twana Denton and Kim Leander graduated from EMT course held at Manitou Springs Fire Station.  Not shown is Heather Elliott.

Erin Davitt is working toward her degree in fire sciences at PPCC and has already completed Firefighter I and is a red-carded wildland firefighter.  She lives in Manitou Springs and worked all summer on a firefighting job in Oregon.  Joan Powers lives in Crystal Park and has completed the National Registry exams and is certified in Colorado.  Twana Denton comes to the department with a long list of training accomplishments from her time in the military, and will also train for firefighting and high angle rescue.  Kim Leander has passed her National Registry exam and is provisionally certified in Colorado. She is also trained in high angle rescue. Both Twana and Kim also live in Crystal Park.

Not shown is Heather Elliott, who comes to the department already trained as an EMT in another state.  She has completed certification in Colorado; she lives in Crystal Park part-time and is also training for high angle rescue.


high angle rescue

Heather Elliott (L) and Kim Leander (R) rapel down a cliff in their high angle rescue training class.  Both are EMT's and with training such as this, can rapel down to a patient in order to provide immediate care while other rescuers prepare to extricate and lift the patient to safety.


fund raiser

The restaurant was packed!  The food was great! 
And we can only thank Lucha Cantina for a great fundraiser for CPFD!

Lucha Cantina

Chief Welsch and family enjoy a fun Cinco de Mayo!


Chief Welsch

Foreman Collin Powers swears in Chief Welsch as of 4/15/2014.

Paul Welsch served as Deputy Chief of the Crystal Park Volunteer Fire Department for over 7 years as he and Chief John Hennessey worked to create a trained and effective fire department for Crystal Park.  Chief John Hennessey and EMT/FF Susi Hennessey are moving to Utah, and Hennessey decided to step down as Chief prior to their move.  Both remain as active members of the fire department until their departure.

The members of the CPFD gave Chief Hennessey a standing ovation for all the work he has put into making this department a success; and welcomed Chief Welsch with appreciation and respect for the commitment and leadership he brings to his new job.


If you registered for the Emergency Notification System prior to July 2013, we are asking you to create a new account by selecting “sign up” at the top of this page:

We have changed the vendor that we use to make Emergency Notifications.  You will need to create a new account to allow you the ability to log in and keep your information up to date. If you are able to login in using your existing username and password no further action is needed. If you get an error message indicating your email or password is invalid, press the sign up button and create a new account.

The El Paso-Teller County 911 Authority provides an Emergency Notification System (commonly referred to as Reverse 911) to notify you of emergency situations that are a threat to life or property, or situations that are deemed dangerous by public safety officials.

The new system allows you to register up to 5 different locations (work, home, school, etc). You can now register up to 8 points of contact per person (landline, cell phone, sms text, email, etc.), and select the order in which you would like the devices notified.  When creating a new account, please register as an individual and not as a household.

You will receive time-sensitive messages wherever you specify, such as your home, mobile or business phones, email address, text messages and more.

It is important to note that during an emergency you should use as many forms of communication as possible to stay informed. Stay tuned to news broadcasts, radio stations, social media websites, weather radios, etc. Do not put your safety at risk waiting for a phone call/notification to be told what to do. If at any time you feel that you are in danger you should take whatever action you feel is necessary to get yourself to safety.

March 22, 2014 BUSY DAY FOR CPFD
On March 22, just after midnight, the Crystal Park Fire Department received a page for a traffic accident on Crystal Park Rd. in the lower Park.  The driver, not a Crystal Park resident, had run off the road.  The car was prevented from rolling over by a guy wire for a utility pole.  Manitou Springs Fire responded with police agencies, determined there were no injuries and departed after turning the scene over to Crystal Park Fire.  It took two Colorado Springs Utilities trucks (one a pole-setting crane truck) and two tow trucks to get the car extracted without damage to the pole and without rolling the car.  Three personnel from CP Fire were on scene until the call was terminated, about 5:30 AM.  The two occupants of the car were extremely lucky.

traffic accident       traffic accident

On Saturday afternoon, it had become quite snowy, and that meant traffic accidents on Highway 24, causing MSFD to request assistance from CPFD. 

910 engine responsing

Over 100 residents attended the meeting to learn about what Crystal Park can do to defend against deadly wildland fires.

Waldo Canyon, then Black Forest.  Is Crystal Park next? 
We need to talk

What:           Crystal Park Community Meeting of Critical Importance
When:           Sunday, March 16, 2014,   2:00 until 4:00 pm
Where:         CPFD Station (enter off Palmer Trail just before the tennis courts)
Who:            We have assembled local and state experts to talk about what we can do as a
                    community; what you can do individually; and to answer your questions about the
                    coming fire season.
Why:            Because Wildfire!  The Community Wildfire Protection Plan Advisory Group has been
                    tasked by the Crystal Park Homeowners Association to set priorities and develop a
                    plan of action to safeguard our residents and prevent our homes from going up in
                    smoke.  We have been working on this, so you might want to know what is going


  • An Alarming Video to Start Things Off       THE FIRELINE:  WILDFIRE IN COLORADO

  • Our Panel of Experts

Step 1          Get an expert in here to make recommendations:  “The Worley Report”
Step 2          Set priorities:  Evacuation and safety zones
Step 3          Get going on projects:  (The Masticator!)  This is going to cost $$$$.  
                    Where do we get the big bucks??
Step 4          What's next:  Cutting zones?   Neighborhood projects!

  • A Personal Story from Black Forest
    Losing a Home to Wildfire:  “I wish I knew then, what I know now.”  Howard Donaldson, JD

  • Print out flyer

Over the past several years, wildfire seasons have increased in both duration and intensity. Very recent history in El Paso County and all along Colorado's Front Range provides far too many examples of what fire can do to homes in wildland areas such as Crystal Park.  Community-wide wildfire mitigation efforts in Crystal Park, or any community as a whole, are conducted on a relatively large scale and may not necessarily be effective in protecting individual homes.

Individual homeowner action is the key to reducing a home's risk of ignition!  Reacting to fire is less effective than preparing for fire.  Your home's last line of defense is the home site itself, and it should be the first prepared. 

There is no practical way to make your home 100% fire proof, but the risks can be significantly reduced.  Years of scientific research and post-fire investigations have repeatedly shown that the structure of a home and its surrounding landscape characteristics are among the most important factors in determining whether a house burns.   Many Crystal Park members have already taken major steps toward mitigating fire hazards on their property, but, for a variety of reasons, many others have not.  If you have not completed fire mitigation measures around your home, the HOA, Metro District and Fire Department strongly encourage you to take advantage of readily available information and expertise, and take meaningful action to increase the survivability of your home.

Here are some of the resources available:

  • CPVFD members have volunteered to perform individual Firewise home assessments and provide specific recommendations for increasing your home's defensibility. To discuss/schedule a no-cost assessment, contact Eric Julian,

  • The Firewise home page available via this link provides information on preparing defensible space and many more fire preparedness topics.


firefighter of 3013

CPFD Volunteer Eric Julian accepts the Firefighter of the Year for 2013.  Eric serves as Lieutenant with special responsibility for wildland firefighting; is a trained structure firefighter and first responder; and has the administrative job of tracking equipment and assets. 
Congratulations, Eric, for a much deserved award.