Golden Leaf thanks |

Golden Leaf thanks

Dear Editor:This past weekend, more than 1,000 runners from 32 states and Canada came to Aspen to participate in the annual Vasque Golden Leaf Half Marathon. Chosen by Trail Runner Magazine as one of “America’s 14 Most Scenic Races” and voted by Colorado Runner Magazine as 2008’s “Best Half Marathon,” the Golden Leaf is one of the most beautiful foot races in the Rockies. This year was no exception. Mother Nature certainly provided fall colors to reflect the marathon’s namesake, as runners were able to experience the height of fall on the challenging course from Snowmass to Aspen. The city of Aspen and Ute Mountaineer would like to thank our fabulous volunteers who donate their time (many schlepping gear into the backcountry for aid stations and other similarly demanding roles), the Aspen Police Department, the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office, Aspen Mountain Rescue, Aspen Ambulance and RFTA for helping to make the event a success and for keeping a watchful eye on our participants. Particularly with a backcountry run, we are grateful for their assistance in providing the safest experience possible to those willing to take the challenge of competing in a race in this demanding physical environment. Thanks to our generous sponsors: Vasque, Marmot, Smartwool, BOA Lacing System, Clif Bar, Camelback, Sierra Design & Ultimate directions, Patagonia, Aspen Skiing Co., Optic Nerve, Native eyewear, Smith Sunglasses, Osprey, Timex, Leki Poles, Mountain Hardwear, Reef Sandals, Cloudveil, Sherpani, Marmot, Arcteryx, Crocs, Black Diamond, and all the generous local businesses who gave raffle prizes for their support.Also, a huge thanks to the Aspen community. Town was full of people, smiling faces and all the best Aspen has to offer, and we hope our participants will all return next fall to participate. Bob Wade, president, Ute MountaineerNancy Lesley, special events director, city of Aspen

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