Sopris Sun

Carbondale's community supported, weekly newspaper

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Letters 7/11/13

We all claim Randy

Dear Editor:

The Udall family asks us to live as Randy did. Did becomes does. He lives on because of his ability to drive home and also live the message of how we can participate responsibly in our future, which can appear perilous, brings a power and energy to me daily. I am sure it does to others.

Someone said to me, “We all claim Randy.”

How true.

Over the last 20 years or so, each encounter I had with him — grocery store, Red Hill, Two Rivers Park, the local dump (when we could still visit it), CRMS — all are sharply in my memory. Sometimes I witnessed extraordinary compassion, other times thoughtful wry humor, and usually critical questions.

In his writing he delivered some truths we might want to avoid in our daily lives and then with his characteristic joy, he seized today’s moment and demonstrated how to fasten issues into personal behavior NOW.

I am the citizen I am in our skeptical times because of Randy. No doubt the brilliance of the night sky and the fragility of spring wildflowers in the Wind Rivers wrapped Randy, and the universe said “Thanks.”

Adele Hause


Dump the tents

Dear Editor:

In their July newsletter, the CCAH announced a lottery to allow twenty 10'x10' shade tents to be erected by the music mixing tent at a cost of $100 to $125 to the winners of the lottery.

Tents would restrict the view of the stage and walking access through the already crowded park for 200 feet across the middle of the park.

A very bad idea.

As the fair has grown, more and more tents have been allowed to congest the park. The open-sided tents allowed in the past should also be removed. Only about 100 “privileged” people (five folks per 10'x10' tent) will benefit while blocking the view of the stage and easy movement through the park by the thousands of visitors to the fair.

CCAH seems to be concerned with the “fairness” of selection of the “privileged,” hence the lottery, without concern for the thousands inconvenienced by the presence of 200 feet of tents.

Sopris Park is a wonderful venue that belongs to the public and the Mountain Fair is a great event that should not cater to an elite few willing to pay for shade.

It’s summer!

It’s July!

Wear a hat!

For 42 years the Mountain Fair has succeeded without shade for the few, and there is the danger that this year’s lottery will set a precedent for future years. Keep the park open and equal for everyone. Take down all the tents except the music mixer and let a bad idea die quickly.

Frank Norwood


Celebrate the Divide

Dear Editor:

My name is A.O. Forbes and I have been a teacher in the valley for the past 27 years.

I grew up in Aspen, attending schools in both Aspen and Carbondale. I have raised my children here and feel uniquely lucky to have spent so much time here, and to have the connections to this valley that have given me so much.

This valley, and all the communities in it are all about relationships, relationships between people that are born out of relationships to the land. As a child, riding my horse with my mother up the side of the Highlands’ Thunderbowl through the aspen on a June morning is for me the essence of this reciprocal relationship between a place I love, and people I love. Aldo Leopold writes so eloquently about the need to revere that connection to place, and to live within that relationship, and to feed it constantly.

To that end, I invite all to come to an event at Two Rivers Park on July 13 from 4 to 8 p.m. to celebrate our reverence for the land we live in, the land that raises our families, feeds our souls and gives us sustenance in every way imaginable. The landscape that we will celebrate is the Thompson Divide. Please come, eat, listen to music and let’s discuss, and celebrate, our connections to this beautiful place. Come, and help us collectively speak to the future of a place that we all love.

A.O. Forbes


We need drones

Dear Editor:

Imagine an elderly pedestrian stranded at a busy intersection. The drone flies over, sees the problem, and immediately dispatches a signal to the nearest Eagle Scout. Or think of the ease with which we will find lost cats. Those charity runs to end breast cancer? Tape-to-tape coverage. They can even do traffic reports. Not only that, but there if there is an abandoned vehicle blocking a lane, consider it cleared.

Now, the critics will say this is just another example of Big Brother, but they’re wrong. This is the ultimate Big Brother! Each drone will be paired with one disadvantaged young man of color, and, like always, about once a month, they will get together, and have a blast.

Jose Alcantara


What’s up with Four Mile?

Dear Editor:

I gathered with other interested people to listen to Scott Fitzwilliams, Supervisor of the White River National Forest, speak on the status of oil and gas leases in Four Mile Park. The BLM was meeting with SG Interests (the company holding the leases for development) and other stakeholders to begin collecting data to conduct an environmental impact statement on the leases. This is the beginning stage for moving the process forward to approve or deny drilling in this portion of the Thompson Divide region.

I would like to thank Scott for meeting with us for a very informative discussion. I learned some important facts:

The Forest Service has informed the Garfield County commissioners it will NOT build an alternate route from East Divide Creek for trucks carrying equipment, water, chemicals and ancillary facilities to drill sites in and near Four Mile Park. So, if drilling is approved up Four Mile, the traffic will move up Four Mile Road, unless the county commissioners take formal action to remove this county road as an official haul route for oil and gas development (which they have not done to date).

The Forest Service has reminded the county commissioners that the commissioners are the only officials with authority to close Four Mile Road to oil and gas traffic. Why haven’t they taken formal action on this issue when they continue to assure the public that they are committed to doing so?

The Garfield County Commissioners keep telling the public they oppose oil and gas industrial traffic on Four Mile Road. Are they being honest with us? Let’s look at their actions: The commissioners are spending millions of taxpayer dollars to improve Four Mile Road; they built a bridge that cost in excess of $1 million into the Oak Meadows Sub-division, where SG Interests holds a lease to drill (under normal circumstances, this bridge would be unnecessary); against overwhelming public opposition, they approved a contract to blast the mountain near Black Diamond Road and straighten the curve (this is a beautiful geologic feature and a natural traffic calming device and the new design accommodates faster speeds and industrial traffic; they approved a contract to pave all the way to Sunlight Mountain Resort.

Why is the county making these improvements? Who will benefit? It is my opinion that through action taken by our county commissioners, we as taxpayers are paying to open this area up for oil and gas development.

Now is the time to become involved. The BLM has begun the process to identify what values need to be protected should development move forward. Please attend a gathering from 4 to 7 p.m. on July 13 at Two Rivers Park to learn more about the issues.

Trési Houpt

Glenwood Springs

Former Garfield county


Burlesque was repulsive

Dear Editor:

My boyfriend and I went to the so-called burlesque production at the PAC3 on June 29. He’d seen it in previous years and said it was fun and not too raunchy.

Let’s just say that this group of local women have changed their MO since previous shows. It wasn’t just raunchy, it was repulsive. We left during the third number with a very bad taste in our mouths. I’m not a prude or a religious nut, but I do have a sense of decency. The “madame” MC wasn’t funny or seductive, just nasty and disgusting.

The first skit was a 1-900 number type monologue with graphic details about lesbian bedroom practices. It was nothing short of pornographic. The second skit was a very talented hula-hoop artist with real talent. I could hardly believe she’d affiliate herself with the others. Skit number three was such a poor display of bad taste that we couldn’t take any more.

It’s hard to imagine that donors to this “performing arts center” would sign another check.

Gina Shaw


Farewell friends, welcome vols

Dear Editor:

The wave of the future is here with the NEW Carbondale Branch Library. Among the exciting changes is the establishment of a new volunteer program offering additional opportunities for community participation.

Historically, the Friends of Gordon Cooper Library provided materials and volunteer assistance, conducted semi-annual book sales, hosted One Book/One Town, and raised independent funds to support a new library. The principal mission of the Friends group has been met with the creation of the new library. With the addition of the revised volunteer program, the Friends of Gordon Cooper Library will cease to be a formal organization. The new volunteer group will continue to support the library’s programs and objectives.

The Friends will host a volunteer open house and reception at the new library from 5 to 6:30 pm. on July 31 to thank all Friends and to welcome new volunteers.

Jane Hart