All posts by Eric Valdez

Eric Valdez has been a graphic designer for 23 years, 15 as art director for Wyoming Medical Center. He has a bachelor's degree in advertising from Columbus College of Art & Design. After college, he ventured forth to find a job in the big city, but a job in Casper found him. He has been here ever since. He enjoys working with many types of media, from pen and ink to digital. He believes that peanut-butter-and-jelly is one of the best meals ever invented, appropriate for anytime of day.

Holiday Square and the Reindeer Run warms the spirit

Thank you to all who braved the cold on Sunday for our Reindeer Run and Holiday Square celebration. Runners raised $7,380 for Wyoming Medical Center Foundation’s Angel Cancer Care Program, more than twice what was raised last year.

Hunter Davila and Amanda Beaver won the individual race. Team winners were Regan Diller, Kramer Hirz, and Dan Uresk. Team “12 Days of Christmas” won best costume.

It all started with a 5K run that brought 294 adults, kids, strollers and dogs out to support the Angels.  It ended with a countdown to zero as the 73,000 christmas lights flicked on shorty after 5:15 p.m.

By Friday, 150 Reindeer Run registrations had been collected. That number doubled on race day. The race began at 4 p.m. with walkers and runners dressed and bundled up for the chilly temperatures. Hot chocolate and cookies were provided to the racers as they finished the race and joined the growing crowd of Casperites enjoying their own hot chocolate and cookies served by the Salvation Army.

The Salvation Army volunteers (Robert King, John Potter, Tara Robbins, Asten Hejke, Debbie Mestas, Isabel Garner and Juan Paz) served hot chocolate and cookies to visitors at the 2013 Holiday Square tree lighting ceremony.
The Salvation Army volunteers (Robert King, John Potter, Tara Robbins, Asten Hejke, Debbie Mestas, Isabel Garner and Juan Paz) served hot chocolate and cookies to visitors at the 2013 Holiday Square tree lighting ceremony.

A special thank you to the Salvation Army who joined ranks with the City of Casper and Wyoming Medical Center and other sponsors in this year’s Holiday Square celebration.  They served 2,000 cups of hot chocolate and gave away 1,000 cookies during the annual event held in Conwell Park.

In this short video, the holiday crowd grows in anticipation of the countdown to turning the lights on for the 2013 Holiday Square tree lighting ceremony.

See below for pictures from the Reindeer Run prior to the lights coming on.


Team Run for God: Jackie McDonald, Brena and James Short, April Crow, Maria Parkinson, Chris Whetham ans Carola Cowan
Team Run for God: Jackie McDonald, Brena and James Short, April Crow, Maria Parkinson, Chris Whetham ans Carola Cowan
The Tannenbaum Trotters picture
Sandy Hoppe, Jessie Boodleman, Megan Smith, Phylicia Nieft
Jenn Schmidt, Angie Mehrens, Abby Holwegner
Reindeer Run team picture
Whitney Grant, Sara Urban, Jennifer Pruitt, Kylee Loutas, Echo Smith, Kristen Getter, Drew Barton
Reindeer Run Team Antlers photo
Team Antlers: Lori Dahlke, Louise Jaskowak, Terri Arnell

Reindeer Runners and walkersReindeer Runners Reindeer Runners

Adding to the herd: WMC gets two new ambulances

Ambulance_bear (1)

Ambulances_eagleWyoming Medical Center’s herd of animals grew by two today — an eagle and a bear. Look for them in mid-December when they hit Casper streets.

All of WMC’s ambulances are now emblazoned with critters found in Wyoming including bighorn sheep, horses, a mountain lion, a mule deer, an elk and a moose. Another animal is added to the herd whenever a new ambulance joins the fleet. The eagle and the bear will replace our buffalo ambulance and the last of our white models.

“We choose animals found in Wyoming to honor the wildlife that we have here in the state, “ said paramedic Eric Evenson.

Our fleet of 10 ambulances responds to more than 7,000 calls every year and each emergency vehicle must be maintained to top performance. We replace one to two ambulances each year to keep the fleet available for calls.

Believe it or not, some people still don’t see or hear these emergency vehicles when they are traveling to a scene, so our eagle and bear ambulances have special, low-frequency horns. These horns will cause vibrations in the vehicles ahead, allowing the sound waves to penetrate the cars instead of curve around them.

Keep an eye out for the newest members of our herd — and please make way if you spot them behind you, lights and sirens flashing.

For more: Watch our bighorn sheep in action and see photos of our other herd animals in ‘BEST PAINT SCHEME EVER’: A Belgian YouTuber is our ambulances’ biggest fan.

Concussion Monday: How does a concussion happen?

Visual of what happens to your brain when you get  concussion
What really happens when you suffer a concussion?

As part of our ongoing Concussion Monday series, we developed a graphic to help people understand what really goes on in the ‘ole noggin when one suffers a concussion.

The Pulse is participating in #ConcussionMonday, an initiative started by Barrow Neurological Institute at St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center to raise awareness about concussion and traumatic brain injury on social media. Hospitals and medical centers across the country use #ConcussionMonday on Twitter to link to education and reminders about concussion prevention.

Read our past Concussion Monday posts below:

Monday 3: What parents should know 

Monday 2: Neurologist Dr. David Wheeler talks symptoms and treatments

Monday 1: A high school coach’s guide to recognizing concussions

Concussion Monday: Neurologist Dr. David Wheeler talks symptoms and treatments

You don’t have to lose consciousness to suffer a concussion.

By definition, a concussion is any impact injury to the brain that causes a disruption in normal neurologic function.  That disruption could include drowsiness, slurred speech or any number of other symptoms – some of which could last several days.

Concussion, especially repeated concussions no matter how minor, can have serious long term consequences. For this reason, The Pulse is participating in  #ConcussionMonday, an initiative started by Barrow Neurological Institute at St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center to raise awareness about concussion and traumatic brain injury on social media.

For our second post, we spoke with Dr. David Wheeler, neurologist with Wyoming Medical Center and Wyoming Neurologic Associaties. Watch the video to learn about the signs and symptoms of concussion and what parents should do if their children experience one.

To get a coach’s pocket-guide for signs and symptoms, check out our first post: Concussion Monday: A high school coach’s guide to recognizing concussions. To join the conversation, follow #ConcussionMonday on Twitter for concussion facts, prevention and inspiration from patient success stories.

Back to school vaccination guide

Vacination_Info_GrfxIf summer activities have swept you away, you’ll want to check the calendar.  Casper schools begin Aug. 19, and your children must be up-to-date on their vaccinations in kindergarten and seventh grade.

To help out, we’ve created an easy-to-read vaccination guide for Wyoming school kids.

Vaccinations are available from your family physician and the Casper-Natrona County Health Department. The health department will offer clinics from 4 to 7:30 p.m. today (Aug. 1) and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Aug. 12 at 475 S. Spruce St. in Casper.

The following vaccinations are available for $12 each:

  • DTaP
  • Polio
  • MMR
  • Chickenpox
  • Hepatitis B

For more information, go to

Rev3 Glow Run

Wyoming Medical Center’s REV 3 GlowRun on July 19 drew 470 runners and walkers for the first time event in Casper.  As part of the Cowboy Tough REV 3 Adventure race, it started at dusk to encourage participants to dress up in their “brightest” or “flashiest” outdoor exercise attire.

Warm, windless, and free of most bugs found close to the river, the evening could not have been better. The start/finish area at Crossroads Park was decorated with several tents for registration, buying t-shirts and other race gadgetry.  There was even a large screen monitor for viewing ”Monsters Inc.” after the races.

Race participants ranged from experienced runners to those who hadn’t even let the thought of training enter their mind.

it was the enthusiasm of everyone taking part that made the night a successful one – that and the glowing runners. Team members slowed down to edge on slower ones. Mothers were running with baby strollers. Families were walking and running with kids of all ages.

It was completely obvious that a person didn’t have to be in top physical condition to take part in these races. Anyone could walk or run as fast as they felt comfortable. What stood out the most after the races had finished were the looks of accomplishment on people faces.  You had to look past the sweat and grimaces on some faces but those looks were there. For some, this was something that had done many times; just another race. For others it was their first time to line up and hear the horn starting them on their trek. Maybe next year will have to be my first time to hear that horn.

If you happened to miss the glow race, click through the photos, courtesy of Dan Cepeda Photography.

Exercise: It’s never too late

It’s never too late to change your lifestyle to have better health, says Dr. Oleg Ivanov, a cardiologist with the Wyoming Medical Center.

Speakers Bureau

Are you looking for an expert to speak on a health topic? You’ve come to the right place. Wyoming Medical Center offers a variety of presentations, for free, to various clubs and community organizations. Physicians and various other clinicians and healthcare professionals offer customized presentations for groups of all sizes.

For more information about topics offered through our Speakers Bureau, or to schedule a talk, contact our Community Development Office at (307) 577-2388.