25-50-100 Years Ago | AspenTimes.com

25-50-100 Years Ago

Chris Cassatt/Aspen Times fileTwenty-five years ago, plenty of Aspenites flooded the mall near Wagner Park to appear in a music video about Aspen and attempt to set a world record.

The pursuit of two armed robbers in Glenwood Springs topped the news in The Aspen Democrat-Times for two days straight a century ago. Bloodhounds and 200 to 300 armed men scoured the countryside, but the posse was criticized for letting the duo escape (pursuers were ordered to shoot the horses, but take the men alive), according to the newspaper. On Day 2, the paper reported:

All trace of the two desperadoes who robbed the Citizen’s National Bank of $10,200.00 in broad daylight Wednesday afternoon has apparently been lost. The men have not been sighted since they plunged over the cliff from the flat top of Mt. Lookout Wednesday evening, after one of their horses had been killed under them. All organized search has practically been given up.

Another posse headed by Undersheriff Divilbliss went out again this morning, but this trip was for the purpose of taking the precaution against the possibility of the robbers having hidden in the bushes or in one of the many ravines. It is figured that hunger will drive them into the open if they are in the same territory and the officers wish to be upon the ground should they show up.

The bloodhounds which were put on the trail yesterday failed to follow the scent and were brought back to the city last night, without having made any progress.

Sentinels have been placed at various points around Glenwood and the farmers and other residents have been asked to be on the lookout for the robbers. It is thought that the two strangers cannot get completely out of the western part of the state without being seen by someone. It is also believed that they have cached their booty because the money was much too bunglesome to be concealed about their persons, the coins over half filling an ordinary 25-pound flower sack.

Early snow a half-century ago meant autumn turns on the slopes of Aspen Highlands. The Aspen Times reported:

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Still in operation from the summer season, the chairlift at Aspen Highlands will begin winter service this weekend when it will carry skiers free of charge.

The decision to open the lift to skiers was made today, Oct. 1, by the Highlands management after eight inches of new snow fell during the night in Aspen.

The new snow brought to total local snowfall up to about 16 inches. Although much of this is gone at the bottom of the lifts, there is still about 16 inches on the ground on the upper slopes, lift officials announced.

The weather 50 years ago was but one challenge for participants in the Colorado Sports Car Rally, which came through Aspen. The Aspen Times reported:

Snow, ice, cattle and sheep were unexpected obstacles for the 71 sports cars that competed in the annual Colorado Sports Car Rally at Aspen last weekend.

Individual honors went to Mr. and Mrs. Devoors of Manhattan Beach, California. In two and a half years of competition, they have won over 70 trophies and are both top contenders for the National Championship.

The first phase of the rally, running from Denver to Aspen, was routed over Loveland Pass, where heavy snows caused delays up to one hour and a half.

On the road from Glenwood to Aspen, two herds of cattle claimed the right of way, resulting in more delay for the contestants.

The second phase of the competition, run on Saturday, was routed over Vail Pass, which was covered with one and a half feet of snow.

Here, a jack-knifed truck contributed to the slippery confusion of the sportsters. Further on, a group of immobile sheep obstructed the road.

A possible world record was on the line in Aspen 25 years ago. The Aspen Times reported:

Even if Cathy Crum’s “Dancetown” video doesn’t set a world record, it will certainly go down as the largest display of aerobics in Aspen’s history.

Several hundred people showed up on the mall next to Wagner Park Sunday afternoon to take part in the final shoot for the locally produced music video and a documented 216 people actually participated in the record-setting attempt.

The would-be record: the world’s longest human shock wave. A shock wave is a break dancing move in which dancers join hands and pass a wave motion along the line with their arms. Mayor Bill Stirling started the shock wave off from the top of the slide in the park and off it went, snaking through the mall.

Who knows whether the Guinness folks will think it’s worth including in their next book, but at least there were plenty of witnesses.

– compiled by Janet Urquhart