November 28, 2006
The Aspen Community Theatre’s production of “Fiddler on the Roof” received rave reviews from everyone who attended. All the production’s participants, from backstage personnel to actors, celebrated beforehand with a big opening-night party at the Aspen District Theatre. Since I couldn’t go, Linda Gerdenich took the photographs.Recognized for his good works in the Roaring Fork Valley (he is in charge of the bell-ringing Salvation Army kettles and also collects food for the homeless), Jim Markalunas was given the Monsignor Thomas Dentici Friends of Charity Award at a celebration of Friends of Catholic Charities on Nov. 2 in Glenwood Springs. Dr. Kurt Papenfus is chairman of the Advisory Board of Catholic Charities, and he took the photographs.
The lighting of the giant spruce tree in front of The Sardy House is always an Aspen holiday tradition. The tree was planted in 1946 when Tom Sardy bought the house from Dr. Twining. Aspenite Jane Jenkins wrote a book several years ago about the tree titled “The Little Fir Tree,” and it is still in print and is now also published in Spanish as well as in English. Jane often reads the story to children in local schools and at the Library and Historical Society.(Jess) Bates, daughter of Jim Hayes and Mary Eshbaugh Hayes, is here for two months to give Jim a hand in the silversmith shop and to spend the holidays with them. Bates has been on Maui, doing interior design and commissioned art at a small resort in Haiku. Previously she was in Seattle doing 3D World Art for Video Games Creation. Her plans for next year include spending more time painting oil portraits and continuing with commissioned design in multiple media.Stopping in the office recently to catch me up on his latest artistic endeavor was John Aaron, who has founded “Chalk4Peace,” a program for young people worldwide. The children are asked to organize chalk-painting festivals in their community, and the paintings are all about peace and the environment. John organized the program a couple of years ago and already Chalk4Peace festivals have been held throughout the Washington, D.C., area as well as in California. (The Aspen Art Museum used to sponsor a chalk-painting contest on the malls and sidewalks of Aspen. Our daughter, Elli, won a bicycle one year with her painting of a castle. Chalk4Peace might be a good way to re-institute this event.) For more information write John Aaron at Museum of Modern ARF, 1116 N. Hudson St., Arlington, VA 22201 or call him at (248) 720-9119. John is also the artist who in the 1980s created the sculpture of the Wheeler Opera House that hangs in the Wheeler Ticket Office.
Performance artist Sarah Pletts is off to Nice, France, where she will be working on a dance project. Got a holiday card from Jess Lutz and Carla Beachcomber Lutz, who say that they will be in their Aspen condo during March 2007 after touring much of the world and spending October and November in their home in Long Beach, Calif.The ACRA annual holiday party will be held Tuesday, Dec. 5, at Bumps at Buttermilk from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. People are asked to take a new, unwrapped toy or cash donation for their admission. Proceeds benefit families through the Aspen Interfaith Association Gift Basket Program. Those planning to attend should RSVP to ACRA at 925-1940.The December issue of Town and Country magazine once again showcases Aspenites Karyn Gerschel Lamb, clad in a strapless green gown attending the Young Friends of the Boston Public Garden at the Four Seasons in Boston, and Evelyn and Leonard Lauder attending the Whitney Museum annual American Art Award gala in New York City. Leonard is museum chairman. The event raised $3.2 million for the museum.The same issue of the magazine includes an article titled “The Upside of Downside” by Francesca Stanfill, telling how she has no greater thrill than a day of schussing, especially in Aspen. She writes that after years of skiing in the Eastern resorts with her family, “The year I was 12, we stopped for a week’s holiday in Aspen. A revelation awaited: Mountains with wide-open bowls, blue skies and sun so bright one risked being burned. Thus began a love affair with the Rockies, and especially with Aspen, that endures to this day.”Undercurrent … Some styles in ski clothing just keep coming back: Witness the puffy ski parka that was really big in the 1960s and ’70s and is now big again.