Town wants restaurants to cut back on grease in sewer

Jackson, Wyo.—Grease is a problem in the sewer pipes of Jackson, causing blockages that can prevent drains and toilets from doing their jobs. It also collects in the town’s wastewater treatment plant.
In 1999, the town banned dumping grease down drains, asking people to instead wipe pots, pans, and plates before washing them. The town’s 105 restaurants are the larger problems as the service lines in commercial areas must be cleaned four times as frequently as residential areas.
The Jackson Hole News (Oct. 16) reports that the town is considering creating a board of health, to better enforce the law. Actions against noncomplying restaurants might include closure, water shut off or tickets.

Big box retailers booming in mountain towns

Park City, Utah—Wild Oats has signed a letter of intent to open a store at Kimball Junction, near Park City in Utah’s Summit County. The health food chain, which specializes in organic food, joins Barnes & Noble, Bed Bath & Beyond, and a movie complex. The store will be nearly 26,000 square feet. The Park City area already has three health food or vitamin businesses.
Elsewhere in unincorporated Summit County, Albertsons seems to be finagling its way past a cap on commercial buildings of 40,000 square feet. The grocery store and pharmacy, together 52,000 square feet, will be split into two. The project seems to be coming along with the consent of both county planners and the county commissioners – but over the wishes of the Planning Commission, according to a report in The Park Record (Oct. 19-22).
Meanwhile, in Colorado’s Summit County, which is also bulging with bigger-box retailers, the Borders bookstore is getting a variance on signs. It expects to be open by this winter, says the Summit Daily News.
Perhaps not incidentally, both Summit counties are bisected by interstate highways and are within about an hour of major cities.

Breck gets into more trouble when innkeeper finds stash

Breckenridge —First Vail Resorts ran into trouble with its magazine ads targeting young snowboarders in their early 20s. “The hill may dominate you. But the town will still be your bitch,” said one, referring to the town’s nightlife. “Each night, a chance to earn your balls back,” said another.
Roger McCarthy, Vail’s chief operations officer at Breckenridge, stepped back from that controversy, pulling the ads after widespread complaints that the language as well as the message were improper. Then, just a few weeks later, he was hit by another controversy when a Breckenridge innkeeper came across a Web site with the following text: “At Breckenridge, everyone has a stash. And if you’re lucky, you might just get someone to reveal their line to you.” The material goes on to talk about a “hit in the park,” a mountain so vast that both skiers and snowboarders can “find what they crave. What they crave is the Breckenridge fix. They crave their own snowy stash.”
The Web site was designed by Resort Technology Partners, an Internet company in which Vail Resorts has a 50 percent stake, reports the Summit Daily News (Oct. 15). The innkeeper, Niki Harris, said the language uses drug lingo.
Ski area CEO McCarthy pulled the Web site language, but not happily so. “I guess we’ve got to produce some pabulum to keep everyone happy,” he told the newspaper.

Study finds snowboard use grew more slowly last year

Denver—Snowboard participation at U.S. resorts continues to grow but more slowly than it has. Minorities continue to be underrepresented. And, in appealing to beginners, ski areas can get females as easily as males, but they just can’t get females to return as easily.
These are among the findings of two surveys reported in the National Ski Areas Association Journal (October/November). Both studies are done by RRC Associates, a Boulder-based research firm.
According to the Kottke National End of Season Survey, last winter’s 54.4 million skier/snowboarders were third highest on record, but down 5.1 percent from the previous winter. Only the Pacific West reported an increase, and, not coincidentally, it was the only area of the country reporting improved snowfall. The figures are based on data from slightly less than half of the nation’s 493 operating ski areas.
Another report, the National Demographic Study, found that snowboards accounted for 29.2 percent of total resort visits last winter, up only 1.5 percent from the previous season. As such, the growth rate for snowboard participation is growing more slowly than in the past.

Summit official proposes doing away with towns

Summit County—Former county sheriff and former Republican Party member Gary Lindstrom is seeking re-election as a county commissioner, his pony tail in full bloom. He seems to be a shoo-in.
Speaking at a recent debate, Lindstrom said he’d like to see the municipalities disincorporate. He believes such things as police protection could be provided more cheaply and, at the very least, the financial tug-of-war between the towns would end.
“The city and county of Summit – that’s definitely what we need to stop this stupid competing between towns,” he said.
Summit, one of Colorado’s smaller counties, has six municipalities. Several of the towns have been vying against one another for grocery stores, discount stores and other generators of sales taxes.
Agreeing with his opponent, Green candidate Justin McCarthy, Lindstrom also called for an end to the War on Drugs. “I was a police officer for 31 years, and I think the war on drugs is lost,” he said. “I think we ought to decriminalize all drugs and tax the hell out of it. Can you imagine if we could use that money (spent on drug law enforcement) to help people? It’s a shame what we’re doing.”

Stump sculptor removes beards from his creations

Hoosier Pass—Is the infamy of Osama bin Laden causing beards to become less popular? It would appear so from the actions of a tree-sculptor Bob Ensign.
Ensign lives in Alma, which has the dubious distinction of being the highest incorporated town in the United States, separated by about 20 miles and one mountain pass from Breckenridge. Many people from Alma, including Ensign, commute across that pass into Summit County. Some years ago, the pass was ornamented with wire sculptures called Wire Men.
Several years ago, Ensign came up with the idea of carving faces in logs along the pass. He has carved the faces, called “YardBobs or “HoosierDaddies,” on 32 logs, and erected them along the highway to amuse other commuters. They were definitely noticed – quite a few of them were taken, to the disappointment of Ensign.
Ensign’s first log faces had beards, but he decided they looked too much like Osama bin Laden. “I shaved my beard off, and started carving the recent ones without beards, too,” he told the Summit Daily News.

Can you tell the Democrat from the Republican here?

Summit County, Utah—Speaking at a recent candidates’ forum were two candidates, one a Republican and the other a Democrat. Can you tell which one is which from an account carried in The Park Record (Oct. 19-22):
“People should be able to do with their property pretty much what they need to do,” said Merlyn Johnson.
“You will never see development that breaks the ridgeline again,” said Bob Richter.
“I’m for open space, but open space needs to be used,” said Merlyn Johnson.

– compiled by Allen Best






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