Breckenridge developers seek celebrities to push real estate |

Breckenridge developers seek celebrities to push real estate

Kimberly Nicoletti
Summit County correspondent
Aspen, CO Colorado
Bode Miller autographs a pair of skis for a fan as 12-year-old Bobby Moyer looks over his shoulder in downtown Aspen in September 2006. A developer wants the skiing star to join other celebrities interested in living in Breckenridge. (Mark Fox/ Aspen Times file)

BRECKENRIDGE, Colo. ” Heisman trophy winner and former NFL pro running back Eddie George has been eyeing Breckenridge real estate. And he’s not the only celebrity some local developers are hoping to attract.

George is part of a large real estate group in Columbus, Ohio that came into town to tape the Pro Football Preview for the Titans vs. Broncos game Nov. 19. When he looked at the prices per square foot compared to Aspen, he thought it was night and day, said his spokesperson Odell Winn.

“Breckenridge offers most of the amenities of Vail and Aspen, but at a much more affordable price,” George said.

George met with the Hall-McNeer Development Group, and when they informed him that Summit County was running out of room to build, it caught his attention, George said. Hall-McNeer’s local projects include a 17-acre estate parcel at the base of Peak 7 and The Legends, a luxury townhome development in Frisco.

William McNeer, a Florida-based developer, contacted George because he knew he was heavily into real estate. Plus, if George buys, his friends may follow.

“It just builds,” McNeer said, adding that Jerome Bettis may be next in town. And, on Dec. 3, an associate of Hall-McNeer is scheduled to meet with Bode Miller in an attempt to draw him to Breckenridge.

“Breckenridge is Bode Miller,” McNeer said. “Breckenridge has more of a younger, wild crowd, and Bode seems to be a cult hero for people in that area. Most celebrities want to go where they’re loved.”

Another person McNeer hopes to bring out to Breck is Allen Covert, of “I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry.” McNeer works with Covert’s father. He’s also in the process of trying to have a new NBC sitcom, revolving around Raffles Van Excel, a professional party crasher of sorts, film in Breckenridge, but he’s in a holding pattern because of the writers’ strike.

“It’s just getting people out there,” McNeer said. “People trust our advice, and we really think it’s a great market out there. We feel like we’re doing them justice. What I like about Breckenridge is it’s real ” they’re all genuine people.”

Breckenridge Town manager Tim Gagen said he’s open to attracting more celebrities to Breckenridge, but he wants to maintain a balance.

“As long as it embraces the community but doesn’t detract from it (it’s OK),” he said. “When celebrity sightings override community character, most people would say it’s a detraction. It’s more about attracting people that embrace Breckenridge as a community. Breckenridge is still a town, a community, where everybody feels like a local.”

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