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Back in the 1970s, I occasionally vacationed at a cabin in Cascade owned by my aunt. It was the perfect getaway for a flatlander from Kansas. Close to Colorado Springs. Close to the mountain towns to the west.

One evening, my friends and I decided to treat ourselves to a lovely dinner, and we headed for Williams Restaurant on the north end of Woodland Park. It's gone now, but back then it was a toney place. However, that's not what I remember most. That evening stands out because it was so dark and lonesome driving through town. I don't recall seeing more than one stoplight.

Woodland Park has grown a lot since then, but it's never lost its feel as a rural retreat. As many should recall, the Texas Seven — on the run 10 years ago after a jailbreak and murder of a police officer in Texas — thought they'd found the ideal hideout there, at the Coachlight Motel and RV Park. They were wrong and were soon arrested, but a fascinated national media made sure to play up the town's rustic atmosphere in print and on TV.

Now, Woodland Park stands at the brink of a big change to its profile, with the expectation that it'll soon host Andrew Wommack Ministries' Charis Bible College. Whether that's a good or bad idea depends on whom you talk to. Take a closer look at Wommack's plan by turning to our cover story, "Mixed blessings," starting here.


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