September Sparks

Beat the Peak

Jared Routh

If you look around your home, you likely have more devices and equipment that require electricity than ever before. Our connected lives are increasingly dependent on more electricity to function. At the same time, as demand for electricity rises, High West Energy must deliver an uninterrupted 24/7 power supply--regardless of market conditions or other circumstances. 

As you would expect, based on your family's habits, electricity use fluctuates throughout the day based on consumer demand. High West Energy must be able to provide enough electricity to meet the energy needs of all members during times of highest energy use or "peak hours." These peak times are typically in the morning as people start their day and in the evening as people return to their homes. Our peak hours are Monday through Saturday from 12 p.m. to 10 p.m. We pay our supplier based on our highest monthly peak during these hours. The lower we can keep that peak, the lower our bills is. The lower our bill is to our supplier, the lower High West Energy can keep rates to our members. 

If the "peak times" concept is a bit puzzling, here's an easy way to think about it, and it's similar to a major concert. We know costs go up when there is strong demand for tickets (or electricity), and both are subject to the basic economic laws of supply and demand. When a lot of people want the same thing, it's more expensive. When they don't, it's cheaper-like a bargain matinee or an "early bird" special at a restaurant. 

With our Time-of-Day rates, we encourage members to adjust their usage to help us level out or flatten our peak. During peak periods, we encourage you to take simple steps to save energy, such as turning your thermostat down a few notches, turning off unnecessary lights and waiting to use large appliances during off-peak times, such as electric clothes dryers and ovens. 

You can also save energy by plugging electronics and equipment such as computers, printers and TVs into a power strip, then turn it off at the switch during peak times. If you have a programmable thermostat, adjust the settings to sync up with off-peak rate periods. When we all work together to reduce energy use during periods of high electricity demand, we can relieve pressure on the grid and save a little money along the way by leveling out our peak. 

Another benefit of this time-of-use approach to electricity use allows greater control over your bill. Reducing the peak impacts the power-supply cost to every co-op member. This is particularly noticeable as energy costs have risen across the U.S. Collectively, everyone conserving energy and making small changes can truly make a difference. 

Remember, taking simple steps to save energy throughout the day and shifting energy intensive chores to off-peak hours is a smart choice for you and our community. If you have questions about our time-of-day rates, please contact our office at 307-245-3261.

Ensuring Accuracy with Membership Information Updates

Effective membership management is crucial for cooperatives to maintain accurate and up-to-date records of their members. Our Member Services Department has been working diligently to ensure our records, including membership applications and service location agreements, are up to date. Regularly updating membership information ensures smooth operations, improves communication, and maximizes member engagement. 

In 2019, we updated our membership applications and most recently, realized that longstanding members do not have the most recent information on file. We have not changed anything regarding information in the membership applications or service location agreements; however, we do want to keep applications up to date for both you as a member and for the cooperative. 

To ensure that we are maintaining up to date information, we are going to be reaching out by telephone to members who do not have the most current membership application/service location agreement on file. We will explain the process as well as see if sending the documents by email is an option for that member. Sending and receiving this information through email provides a simple and cost-effective way to communicate. If possible, email is the preferred option. If email is not an option, we will mail the documents to you. 

We ask that you please complete the most current application and service location agreement as soon as you receive it and send it back to us. If you have any troubles during this process, please call our office at 307-245-3261 and we can assist you. 

This will be a long process for us to complete; however, we appreciate your patience with us during this time. By prioritizing the updating process, organizations can enhance communication and improve member engagement. Investing time and effort in keeping membership records up to date ultimately leads to a stronger and more thriving organization. 

We appreciate your membership, and we appreciate your cooperation with us during this process. We want to ensure our member information is up to date to allow for easy communication and effectiveness. Thank you for working with us during this process and we will be in contact with members who need updated membership information. 


We have a new message program through Smart Hub known as Messenger. We will begin to use this feature more frequently to communicate with our members. This feature will allow for more effective communication as well as a quicker way to receive important information from High West Energy. 

Recipe of the Month

Lemon Berry Tartlets


1 sheet frozen puff pastry

1 tablespoon all-purpose flour for dusting

1 egg, beaten

1/3 cup lemon curd 

12 fresh blackberries

1 tablespoon confectioners' sugar for dusting


Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Place frozen puff pastry sheet on a work surface dusted with flour. Allow to thaw for 2-3 minutes. Using a 1 1/2-to-2-inch round cookie or biscuit cutter, cut out 12 round pieces. Place pastry rounds on the prepared baking sheet. Using a slightly smaller round cookie or biscuit cutter, cut out inner circles in each pastry round, leaving them in place. Brush each pastry round with beaten egg. Bake in the preheated oven until browned and puffed, about 13-15 minutes. Allow to cool completely before filling. Cut around the small inner circle of each pastry round and gently push it down. Fill each tartlet with lemon curd and top with a blackberry. Dust with confections' sugar. 

*Recipe is from 

Upcoming Events

September 19/20- Ag Expo (Laramie County Fairgrounds)

September 30- Kimball Farmer's Day

Check out the full Sparks below!