Stephen John Lidgey was born on September 14, 1960, in Delaware County, Penn. He spent most of his childhood in the countryside near Sparta, N.J., graduating from Queensbury High School in Glens Falls, N.Y., in 1977.
From his earliest years, Steve loved creating epicurean masterpieces with food and cocktails. After working several years in Lake George, N.Y., as a bartender, Steve moved to Austin, Tex., where he continued to work in the food service industry. He was followed to Texas shortly thereafter by his siblings, father and stepmother. There, Steve married and became the father of two boys, Jesse (born in 1986) and Trent (born in 1987). Steve lived and loved the Texas life for almost 25 years, feeding customers, friends and family his culinary works of art. He waited tables and tended bar at various locales, including a favorite Mexican restaurant, one of many places where Steve perfected his craftsmanship of cooking and serving. There he also furthered his education in the art and mastery of making a great margarita.
In 2001, Steve came to southwest Colorado to visit his mother in Montrose, and he decided to stay. He worked for two years at the Skier’s Union Café in Telluride, but soon found his niche at the Blue Jay Lodge and Café in Placerville in August 2003. Quickly Steve became known throughout the area as the Blue Jay’s best bartender, because he was a gentle, talented mixologist with a great sense of humor. He had his own fan club of regulars made up of ladies as well as gentlemen, and even kids – all of which he could easily charm with his generous smile and biting wit. Steve had the innate ability to make every person he met feel special and appreciated, though he treated regulars extra well, and they returned time and again to visit and laugh with their friend. Steve worked the last seven years of his life at the Blue Jay, and he will be greatly missed by co-workers, locals and customers alike.
Following four happy years together, Steve married best friend and love of his life Karen Stellhorn on July 12, 2009. Though he spent just over one short year of wedded bliss his new bride, Steve enjoyed their existence to the fullest, providing Karen with much laughter and contentment. Not only was he an amazing cook, he had a terrific green thumb and was a gardener extraordinaire, as well as a true lover of the outdoors – especially his own backyard. Steve’s favorite tasks were fishing, mowing the lawn, watering his vast array of flowers, and tending his lush garden of vegetables – these he would slice and serve to his wife for dinner whenever possible.
Steve is survived by wife Karen Lidgey of Norwood; sons Jesse Lidgey and Trent Lidgey of Manchester, N.H.; mother Patricia Vitela and stepfather John Vitela of Montrose; father James Lidgey and stepmother Betsy Lidgey of Phlugerville, Tex.; sister Cynthia Schoen of Victoria, Tex.; brother James B. Lidgey of Phlugerville, Tex.; stepsister Beverly Evans and stepbrother David Evans of Calif.; and five nieces and nephews.
Steve, you are greatly missed, but there is no doubt you are relaxing on a beach somewhere and feeling just fine. We love you and always will. Your smile, sense of humor and gentle soul will always stay with us.
A memorial service for Steve has not yet been scheduled but will take place at Rancho Poco (the Lidgey Home) in Norwood in early August, with potluck dinner and evening bonfire. Friends and family are asked to share their memories of Steve.