Federal Housing Finance Agency Reports Interest Rates lower

The average interest rate on conventional, 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage loans of $417,000 or less decreased 13 basis points to 4.79 percent in June. These rates are calculated from the FHFA’s Monthly Interest Rate Survey of purchase-money mortgages. These results reflect loans closed during the June 24-30 period. Typically, the interest rate is determined 30 to 45 days before the loan is closed. Thus, the reported rates depict market conditions prevailing in mid- to late-May.

The contract rate on all mortgage loans (fixed- and adjustable-rate) was 4.61 percent in June, down 14 basis points from 4.75 percent in May. The effective interest rate, which reflects the amortization of initial fees and charges, was 4.74 percent in June, down 13 basis points from 4.87 percent in May.

Information from RISMEDIA, July 29, 2011

Free Admission on Mon, Aug 1st to any of Colorado's 42 state parks

Colorado State Parks will celebrate Colorado Day, Monday, Aug. 1 by offering free entrance at all 42 state parks. Colorado Day was created by the state legislature to mark the anniversary of statehood, granted in 1876 by President Ulysses S. Grant. Free entrance at the state parks is an annual Colorado Day tradition. Learn more at Colorado State Parks Home Page and find out what parks are near you and go exploring!

Shop at BORDERS for discounts

Borders bookstores are now closing (due to bankruptcy) and store closing sales are going on with discounts up to 40% off. Call or visit your local Borders store to learn about their discounts. You only have until July 31st to redeem any rewards points or Borders Bucks you may have accumulated, so don’t delay!

If you have gift cards, they’ll be accepting them through their entire store closing sale and at Borders.com.

Donate & Receive FREE FOOD at Chick-fil-A

MONDAY, July 25th - Take at least 2 non-perishable food items to any Colorado Springs Chick-fil-A location on Monday and receive a FREE original or spicy chicken sandwich. Donations will be given to Care & Share Food Bank. Please be generous with your donations.

What are you doing this weekend?

Looking for some fun things to do this weekend around town? Here are a few things happening in Colorado Springs this weekend.

Friday, July 22nd:
Enjoy BBQ on the patio at the Garden of the Gods Trading Post tonight from 5-7pm for only $7.50.

After dinner, head to the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo for stargazing at the mountaineer sky ride. Only $5 for adults or $4 for kids. From 8pm - 10pm. Soar over the zoo as the sun sets and enjoy learning about astronomy and gazing at the stars.

Saturday, July 23rd:
Downtown Colorado Springs Food Tour from 2:30pm - 5pm $49/person - tour also includes Old Colorado City and Manitou Springs.

5th Annual Colorado Springs Beer Fest noon - 5pm at Antlers Park with free parking at Antlers Hilton parking garage - hosted by Old Chicago. Advance tickets are $20; at the door $25

Free Family Adventure Day at Bemis School of Art between 10 am - 2pm with a free docent led tour of the Fine Arts Center at 12:30pm.

Sunday, July 24th:
Shivers Concert An Evening of Inspirational Song at Packard Hall, Colorado College. $5-$15; concert starts at 4pm.

Of course, this is just a sampling of events around town this weekend. You can check out more by visiting http://www.coloradosprings.com/

Have a fun & safe weekend

2011 U.S. Women's Open in Colorado Springs at the Broadmoor

I love golf and am so excited that the 2011 U. S. Women's Open is taking place this week at the Broadmoor. This is the 66th annual U. S. Women's Open at it takes place from July 4 - July 10, 2011 on the Broadmoor East Course. Big names like Morgan Pressel, Anna Nordqvist, Paula Creamer, Christina Kim, Annika, Brittany Lincicome, Natalie Gulbis and more will be here. There will be autograph signings and of course plenty of golf. Normally, this is something fun to watch on ESPN, but since this is local, if you can make it, you should. Talk about a once in a lifetime experience. You can check out ticket information as well as a schedule of events here. Maybe I'll see you there!

Colorado Springs Fourth of July Celebrations & Events

If you are like me, you enjoy watching a good fireworks show on the 4th of July. I've had a bit of difficulty gathering the correct information for all the local fireworks shows in Colorado Springs and surrounding areas. This is not an exhaustive list, but I feel it gives you some great highlights.

For decades, Memorial Park in Colorado Springs was "the place to be" for 4th of July celebrations and fireworks. Back in 2009 the city discontinued 4th of July activities there due to budget cuts. Not to be confused with Memorial Park in Woodland Park where there are celebrations (see below for details).

Here are several links I have found with a list of local events, celebrations and fireworks.

4th of July celebrations at the Air Force Academy Falcon Stadium will be a popular choice for many in Colorado Springs. Gates open at 4 p.m. on Monday the 4th and the fireworks display will start at 9:30 p.m. There will be a bouncy house, food vendors, the Colorado Springs Philharmonic as well as the AFA Band. Check out all the details here.

Sky Sox Stadium is another place to enjoy your 4th Celebrations. The game starts with the Sky Sox vs Tacoma Rainers at 7:05 with a grand fireworks display following the game. Fireworks will follow after the game.

Rock Ledge Ranch at the entrance of Garden of the Gods is having patriotic celebrations on July 4th from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. There will not be a fireworks display. Learn more.

The Rocky Mountain Freedom Festival at the Douglas County Fair Grounds in Castle Rock will have fireworks on SUNDAY, July 3rd at 9:45 p.m. Check out all the details here.

Cripple Creek always has a BANG of a fireworks show. Entertainment starts at noon in the City Parking Lot and fireworks start at dark.

Fort Carson's Celebration will occur SUNDAY, July 3, beginning at 4 p.m. at Ironhorse Park. The event includes many family-oriented activities to include arts and crafts and big-air jumpers for children, food vendors and musical entertainment by the New Sensation Band. Fireworks will be set to music by the 4th Infantry Division Band. Attendees over the age of 18 must present a federal or state issued photo ID and proof of vehicle registration and insurance. Visitors should enter through Gate 1, off State Highway 115. Besides service animals, no pets are allowed. Weapons, glass bottles and backpacks also are prohibited. To learn more info, call the Outdoor Recreation Complex at 719-526-4494 or the Fort Carson Public Affairs Office at (719) 526-4143 /7525.

Manitou Springs The fireworks are tentatively scheduled for dusk and will be shot from Higginbotham FlatsFlats, across the valley from the town. A final decision on the fireworks display will be made the weekend of July 4. To learn more, call the Volunteer Fire Dept at 719-685-1444 or go to their city web site.

Monument / Palmer Lake / Tri-Lakes area: They have events going on ALL weekend. Their fireworks extravaganza begins at dusk by Palmer Lake. Check out all the events here.

Woodland Park also has many events & fireworks to celebrate the 4th. You can read all about it here.

Of course, we all know how dry it is in El Paso County, Colorado right now and that due to fire bans, some of the above shows could be cancelled. Please check with authorities before heading out. Have a Happy and Safe 4th of July!