Could Sun Valley celebs be next on terrorist agenda?
SUN VALLEY, IDAHO – In the wake of 9/11, Blaine County Sheriff Walt Femling says his and other law enforcement agencies are more attentive to security in the Sun Valley and Ketchum areas because of the celebrity residents and high-ranking corporate executives and government officials who meet there.
Visitors to the area have included the director of the Central Intelligence Agency and top echelon U.S. military figures, notes the Idaho Mountain Express (Aug. 14- 20). Also, some of the world’s major media and entertainment executives meet at Sun Valley every summer, including Bill Gates. This year, host Herb Allen, of the New York investment firm Allen & Co., hired members of the New York City SWAT team to provide additional security.
“Some of the homeowners, the people who come here, they’re very high profile,” and tempting targets for any group “if they’re after headlines,” observed the sheriff.
Motley Crue singer stomps off stage after just three songs
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS – Vince Neil, the singer for Motley Crue, delivered very little to the 250 people who had paid $25 to see him.
Although what The Steamboat Pilot
(Aug. 16) describes as a small yet raucous crowd of head-bangers cheered
him, the 41-year-old singer cursed and insulted them
His backup band tried to coax him
back on stage, even playing Motley Crue’s classic, “Girls,
Girls, Girls,” but to no avail. Thirty minutes later the band’s
bus drove off, leaving
Gondola at Mammoth Lakes a monster in its own right
MAMMOTH LAKES, CALIF. – Gondola
cars capable of handling up to 15 people each are expected to be going
up Mammoth Mountain by Christmas vacation, part of
The gondola was envisioned as long
ago as the 1960s by Dave McCoy, the ski area’s founder. As development
occurred along the route from 1973 forward, a right-of way
Intrawest joined the ski area operator
in the 1990s, bringing in new ideas as well as the cash necessary
to develop old ideas. Among those ideas was a pedestrian
Although in the planning stage for 12 years, there was no real ground work until last summer, says the newspaper. The gondola has 19 towers, and the cars will be 100 feet above the ground. This has required some tree trimming and also ultimately the planting of 80 trees. Resort officials suggest that the operation caused so little disruption that at least one nearby homeowner asked to be notified when work would occur – unaware it already had.
The Mammoth Village Gondola is said
to be unlike any other resorts’ gondolas, going across a mile-long
route of homes and condominium complexes. Heavenly Valley’s
For sale or rent: Cheap housing, bring your own nose plugs
CRESTED BUTTE – Every ski town needs affordable housing, and every ski town has sewer plants. Often, they end up in relative proximity.
That’s the case at Crested
Butte. But before pulling the trigger on an affordable housing project,
town officials have decided to spend $30,000 to see if the odor can
Sluggish economy seems to hurt lower end of Park City tourism
PARK CITY, UTAH – More anecdotal
evidence is arriving that the nation’s economy is hurting tourism
in ski and other resort towns. A case in point is Base Camp, a new
The new hotel, which formerly was
a hostel, is charging $25 per person, or $80 for a private room. It’s
set up for teens as well as travelers on a budget. But with other
Steamboat hopes to shift tax burden onto property owners
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS – For two
decades, the City of Steamboat Springs has had no property tax, allowing
the sales tax to do the town’s heavy lifting. But with sales
One rationale for the taxes, reports The Steamboat Pilot (July 21), is that it will hit nonresident property owners, sometimes called second-home owners. “People who live here part time are getting a free ride on the backs of the people who are living here full time,” says Bud Romberg, a city councilman. “(More than half) of residences are registered to nonlocal addresses. Our city is run on sales taxes, and so those people are not paying for the support they receive such as fire, police and maintenance of streets.”
Foreigners imported as rugby team ringers
PARK CITY, UTAH – Everybody
knows that Australians and Mexicans are being imported to drive buses
and clean hotel rooms in ski towns of the West. But rugby
the Park Record (Aug. 3-6) reports that the local rugby club advertised for foreigners in a world-wide rugby magazine, and, from among hundreds of applications, recruited two New Zealanders and two Brits. Town businesses and individuals pitched in to host the ringers. The rugby team, called the Muckers, in recognition of Park City’s mining roots (a “mucker” shoveled ore), plans to import more players and coaches next summer.
Drought leaves Colorado ski towns scrambling for buckets
WINTER PARK – With most mountain towns growing rapidly, many were already looking to build reservoirs, to ensure year-round water supplies, even before this year’s drought hit.
In Winter Park, town officials are talking with the Forest Service about the possibility of buying up to 640 acres of national forest land, where a reservoir that could hold 3,000 to 8,000 acre-feet might be built. The town’s water-treatment plants are already located there, notes the Winter Park Manifest (Aug. 14).
“Having 5,000 acre-feet of
water located above our heads would ensure our future, especially
in terms of the shortages we are seeing now,” said Vince Turner,
Gypsum, located 37 miles west of Vail, has filed requests on two sites in the national forest that town officials have identified as possible reservoir sites. However, those sites are within a section of the national forest that is recommended for wilderness.
In the land where man bites dog, dad sues son
Park City, Utah – This isn’t
quite in the realm of man bites dog, but it’s close. In Park
City, a 53-year-old man has filed a $500,000 lawsuit against his 29-year-old
– Compiled by Allen Best