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25/50/75

MAY 1929

Raising and controlling youngsters has always been hard. But judging from the sound of the following, kids were more compliant during the Quiet Years.

Commencing tonight all young boys and girls not accompanied by their parents or guardians must get off the streets and hike for home at 9:00 o’clock each and every night ” and that the youngsters may know when it is 9:00 o’clock, the Siren will give one long blast.

When you hear it, kiddies, hike for home.

FRANK HAMILTON

City Marshal

The use and ownership of water was as controversial 75 years ago as it is today.

The county commissioners convened in regular session Monday morning at the court house. …

Routine business of paying bills accruing in April received the undivided attention of the “watch dogs” of the taxpayers’ money-chest up to 11:00 o’clock, at which time the board took up the assessment of the water running from a lake in Pitkin County through the Carlton Tunnel to reservoirs in Lake County. Assessor Paul Caley in April placed a valuation of $36,000 on this water at $1.00 the acre foot and there being 36,000 acre feet made the valuation of the water flowing from Pitkin County to the Carlton Sugar Beet Farm on the eastern slope.

Morrison Shafroth, a Denver attorney, appeared before the board, representing Mr. Carlton, and asked that the commissioners annul the assessment or at least rebate it and thus bring the matter before the State Tax Commission for decision.

Mr. Shafroth read an old decision of the state supreme court stating that water in ditches or laterals was public property and not owned by any individual until placed on the land ” therefore not taxable.

Judge Deane, attorney for the county, argued that the water was for sale and was sold the moment it passed over the county line into Carlton reservoirs on the other side of the hill, and therefore taxable by Pitkin County. …

The Times is of the opinion that our county commissioners did right in standing on this assessment.

There may not have been much to celebrate in 1929 in Aspen, but celebrate the people did, even on days that are barely recognized as occasions for festivity today.

The Ladies of the G.A.R. will give their 32nd annual May Day Program and Dance at the Fraternal hall tonight. Everybody is cordially invited to attend and besides having a jolly good time, help a most worthy cause.

The Program will consist of a May Pole Dance and Crowning of the May Queen by 12 little girls and 12 little boys. This promises to be a most spectacular and picturesque event.

MAY 1954

The paper reported good progress in the unusual financing scheme for a new double chairlift on Aspen Mountain.

As of Wednesday evening a total of $10,300 in cash and checks and pledges totaling $2500 had been received from Aspenites who were backing the building of a double chairlift in Spar Gulch. This money received to date is strictly a loan and is secured by Skiing Corporation notes due in ten years and drawing 4% interest. The misconception has been going around town that this is somehow a gift which is entirely untrue.

By selling these notes in Aspen the citizens are buying a stake in their own future and at the same time helping build a much more satisfactory lift than would have otherwise been built by the Skiing Corporation. The Aspen Skiing Corporation has almost decided on the so-called Platter Pull type of lift when interested Aspen citizens volunteered to sell the additional $25,000 in interest bearing notes to finance the larger and more useful lift.

An area, today restored to a natural wetlands through a partnership of the Aspen Center for Environmental Studies and the forest service, was envisioned as a large recreational development 50 years ago.

Mike Carrasco, owner of the lake on Smuggler Mountain, formerly known as Warren’s Lake, has announced the formation of a private fishing club at the lake to be known as Mountain Meadows Park. Memberships sold in this development will entitle the owner to fishing privileges and the choice of a lakeside building site of 150 feet lake frontage.

Mountain Meadow Lakes has two lakes, the largest of which is about 40 acres. During the past two years, the second lake has been constructed. A large natural amphitheater needed only to have the narrow outlet dozed full of rock and earth to make another lake of about 12 acres. Carrasco planted three pairs of beaver in the property, and they have done a wonderful job of building to make the high mountain stream maintain a constant flow into the lakes.

Western water is constantly monitored, measured and legislated. The paper forewarned,

The water content of the snow on the Roaring Fork River above Aspen is 44% of the 18-year average, as of May 1, according to Forest Ranger Gay Weidenhaft.

Readings show that Independence Pass Tunnel has a snow depth of 25.5 inches with a water content of 7.6 inches. This is below the 1953 readings of 50.3 inches of snow and 15.5 inches of water.

Precipitation was below normal and the snow melt was excessive during April. As a result, water stored as snow on the watershed in Colorado is at a record low for May 1.

MAY 1979

The paper reported a good turnout for the municipal election.

Sixty-three percent of Aspen’s registered voters went to the polls Tuesday to elect Herman Edel mayor, and Susan Michael, Charles Collins and George Parry to the city council.

In addition, voters overwhelming defeated proposed expenditures to expand the mall and initiate a downtown beautification program

However, they narrowly approved a bond issue for street and storm drain improvements and a real estate transfer tax to finance renovation of the Wheeler Opera House and subsidize local arts programs.

At the same time county voters, including those living within the city, rejected a proposed charter change which would have retained three commissioners instead of the five included in the new charter.

Aspen Highlands showed some muscle as the paper explained,

The Maroon Bells bus program was threatened this week by Aspen Highlands which has asked for $9,000 for the use of its parking lot and the services of a marketing director.

Highlands charged $6,000 last year for the use of the lot.

Under the program, visitors to the Bells are intercepted at Highlands where they must leave their vehicles and ride the rest of the way to Maroon Lake on county buses. …

[Transportation Director Curt] Stewart and [County Commissioner Michael] Kinsley said that the fact that the program deposits thousands of people on the doorstep of the Highlands skyride ought to be worth something to the Highlands.

What has turned out to be a failed experiment in solar architecture was heralded in the paper 25 years ago as “The First in the West.”

Architect Larry Yaw explained that the [new post office in the Truman Center] will be the first solar heated post office in the West. The million dollar plus facility will be among the first five in the nation. …

The solar design will be an active one with flat plate water collectors. The solar system, said Yaw, is designed to fill 85% of the energy needs of the building, even in winters like the last one. …

Yaw summed up the design concept of the post office project. … “Aspen radiates an image of being in the forefront of energy consciousness. And the building is right out there in front.

“It is a building that makes no bones about being a solar building. And it’s a step toward taking Aspen out of the Victorian tradition and into the 20th century.”


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