24 Hours safe at Sunlight in Glenwood
Glenwood Springs correspondent
Aspen, CO Colorado
GLENWOOD SPRINGS ” Thanks to a donation from the Glenwood Springs branch of American National Bank, the 24 Hours of Sunlight endurance race will shine at the local ski area for its fourth consecutive year.
“They came in as a strong sponsor, and it looks like it will be another good event,” said Casey Wood, account director for 24 Hours of Sunlight.
Event organizers Real Time Marketing announced Monday the event would remain at Sunlight despite some worries that organizers would seek another host mountain because of a lack of funding for this year’s race. However, the sponsorship from American National Bank made it possible for the event to stay put, at least for one more year.
“In past years the event has not broken even. At some point we have to decide whether or not to continue,” said Wood. “This year we were able to continue because of the American National Bank support.”
The dollar amount, or sponsorship level, from the bank was not disclosed in a press release from Real Time Marketing. Calls to the bank’s local branch seeking comment were not returned on Thursday.
The event is intended to raise funding for the Valley View Hospital Foundation. However, since the event has not make a profit, the foundation hasn’t received any funding from it in the three previous years, according to Wood.
Last year, the event ran $15,000 short of breaking even.
“They’ve garnered a lot of press through the event, but they haven’t received any money,” Wood said. “We are hoping to change that.”
If it again falls short, the event could lose its speed altogether.
“It’s a possibility,” Wood said. “Our primary goal is to break even. But, along with added racers, added sponsorship dollars and looking at cutting things that are not necessary, we’re hoping to make it this year.”
Wood is expecting the highest turnout so far with an anticipated 350 participants for the 2009 event. Last year’s race drew 266 competitors. The inaugural event in 2006 saw only 75 participants, Wood said. Teams of participants skin or hike up the ski mountain and ski or snowboard down for 24 consecutive hours.
The 2009 24 Hours of Sunlight will be held on Feb. 7-8. Registration for the event began on Nov. 1 and participants can save $25 by registering before midnight on Dec. 31.
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The Youth Art Expo will run Feb. 27 through March 14 at the Aspen Art Museum, showcasing work by young artists from Aspen to Rifle.