Mountain Mayhem: Stimulating spring events |

Mountain Mayhem: Stimulating spring events

by May Selby
Mountain Mayhem

Several events this spring have been especially stimulating, starting with the Bridging Bionics Foundation Benefit on March 7. Presented as a “Supercharged Apres-Ski Party,” the early-evening reception took place at the Tesla store downtown (which has since closed) with a full house gathered together to learn more about the Basalt-based organization. Founded by Amanda Boxtel in March of 2013, Bridging Bionics Foundation serves to help fund, educate and advance the research and development of exoskeletons and bionic technology. This includes helping people with neurological impairments regain mobility. Some are even able to stand up and walk using bionic exoskeleton suits and whole body vibration. Earlier this month, Boxtel was recognized by CNN Worldwide as a 2018 CNN Hero for her important work. Learn more at

On March 14, Aspen Center for Environmental Studies welcomed Laurie Marker, the founder and executive director of the Cheetah Conservation Fund (CCF) for Cheetah Night. Having worked with cheetahs since 1974, Laurie set up the not-for-profit in 1990 and moved to Namibia to develop a permanent Conservation Research Centre for the wild cheetah. Marker shared updates on how CCF is leading efforts to save the cheetah in the wild, noting “the cheetah’s survival depends on all of us.” She also extended an open invitation to all to visit the Cheetah Eco Lodge, adding it may not be “glamorous,” but it will be meaningful. Kids Saving Elephants & Kids Saving Big Cats sponsored the evening with twin sisters Willow and Isabella Poschman leading the charge for this event. Learn more at

Shortsfest took place from April 3 to 8, with an opening night reception and screening at the Wheeler Opera House on April 3. The springtime program is considered “the crown jewel” of Aspen Film’s trifecta of festivals with the next one this fall when Filmfest returns.

On April 5 at the aptly chosen setting of the Shigeru Ban-designed Aspen Art Museum, the rooftop was filled to the gills for the close of the 10th annual Architecture Lecture Series. For the final installment, the Architecture Here & Now panel discussion brought legendary voices together in tracing the tradition of architecture in our community and asking the question: how has the design of our local environment evolved and where might we be headed? Moderated by 2018 American Institute of Architects National President Carl Elefante, the panel included Charles Cunniffe, John Cottle, Sarah Broughton and Scott Lindenau. Among the key points discussed was an emphasis on collaboration being an essential component to the design, permitting and building phases of architecture, along with a shared appreciation for the sophistication of clients’ tastes and an understanding of the complexity of life cycles of buildings, which needs to be taken into consideration.

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