Aspen Hall of Fame to honor Beattie, Soldner
Former U.S. Ski Team coach and ABC Sports announcer Bob Beattie, and Anderson Ranch founder and acclaimed ceramicist Paul Soldner will be inducted into the Aspen Hall of Fame in October. Beattie coached the U.S. Ski Team from 1961-69 and developed America’s first Olympic-medal skiers in Billy Kidd and Jimmy Heuga, who won silver and bronze, respectively, in the 1964 games in Innsbruck, Austria. Later, Beattie’s voice became synonymous with Olympic skiing as the announcer of the 1976, 1980 and 1984 games for ABC’s Wide World of Sports. He made the National Standard Race (NASTAR) wildly popular in his 30 years as commissioner and is also partly responsible for the creation of the World Cup. Locally, Beattie encouraged a partnership between the Aspen Valley Ski Club and Aspen Skiing Co. to offer ski school to all children in the valley with a “no child left behind” philosophy. As a result, generous scholarships are offered and the opportunity to ski and snowboard is now available to children valleywide. Soldner, 83, created Anderson Ranch in 1966. Originally called the Center of the Hand, the facility has become one of Aspen’s most important art galleries and schools. Soldner is internationally known as the father of “American Raku,” a unique firing technique in ceramics.His love for art blossomed following his service in the Army, which included three and a half years as a medic in World War II. He will participate in an art exhibition in Greece that will coincide with the 2004 Summer Olympic celebrations. Local filmmakers Greg Poschman and Edgar Boyles are producing oral history video profiles about Beattie and Soldner to be premiered at the Hall of Fame banquet on Saturday, Oct. 23, at the Hotel Jerome. The Aspen Hall of Fame was started in 1987 as part of the Aspen Skiing Co.’s 40th anniversary of skiing celebration.
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