In Brief: Airport tours offered during closure; river hazard for boaters; Limelight Denver official opens |

In Brief: Airport tours offered during closure; river hazard for boaters; Limelight Denver official opens

Staff report

Airport offers tours during May closure

The public is invited to learn about the redevelopment of the Aspen/Pitkin County Airport, including a new terminal, at two open houses on Monday, May 22.

Airport Advisory Board members and airport staff will be on-hand to answer questions about airside (runway) and landside (terminal) improvements. The open houses will be held in the departures/ticketing area of the terminal, and parking will be free on this day at the Bear Lot across from the terminal.

Airport tours will be available, though space is limited:

  • Open house, afternoon session: noon-2 p.m.
  • Airport tours: 2:30-4 p.m.
  • Open house, evening session: 4:30-6:30 p.m.

The airport will be closed May 10-24 for airfield pavement maintenance.

River-wide hazard for boaters near Aspen

The Roaring Fork Valley Whitewater Paddlers warn that “boaters should be aware of a river-wide strainer at the Slaughterhouse section of the Roaring Fork River near Aspen. The strainer poses a serious hazard to boaters. defines a strainer as anything that lets water pass through but prevents the passage of a person.”

Limelight Denver opens Thursday beside Union Station

Aspen Hospitality, the hospitality division of Aspen Skiing Co. officially transitioned the Hotel Born, which is next to Denver’s Union Station, to Limelight Denver, as of Thursday.

To start, Limelight will implement select programming changes, including adding an adventure concierge and new philanthropic efforts focused on the local Denver community, Skico officials said. Over the balance of 2023, additional enhancements will be made throughout the hotel as the property transforms to Limelight.

The hotel is the first urban location for the Limelight brand and joins the existing Limelight portfolio in Aspen and Snowmass, and Ketchum, Idaho. Two additional properties, Limelight Hotel & Residences in Mammoth, California, and Limelight Boulder are under construction and slated for completion in 2025. Aspen Hospitality also recently announced the planned expansion of its other hotel brand, The Little Nell, to Rockefeller Center in New York City.

Now comes Limelight Denver — the hotel first opened in 2017 and was developed by Continuum Partners, who served as co-master developer of the Union Station neighborhood. The property features 200 guest rooms, 14,000 square feet of meeting space, and the Citizen Rail restaurant. Located in the heart of LoDo and a direct light-rail ride away from Denver International Airport, the hotel serves as a hub for the urban visitor, groups, business traveler, or for a quick layover en route to a mountain getaway.

Aspen Journalism wins six Top of the Rockies awards

Aspen Journalism this week reported that six of their entries in the Society of Professional Journalists’ Top of the Rockies contest received awards for stories in 2022.

Aspen Journalism received three first-place awards, one second-place award, and two third-place awards for work by AJ staff and freelance reporters covering environment, data, and social justice.  

Top of the Rockies, a regional, multiplatform contest for reporters and news organizations in Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming, is sponsored and managed by the SPJ Colorado Pro chapter. An awards reception was held April 22 at the Denver Press Club.

Categories were open to news media outlets in all platforms, and entries were judged on overall excellence, service to the community, balance, and contributions to the public’s understanding of issues and events. The work was judged by the members of SPJ professional chapters in Chicago and in Ohio.

Aspen spring cleanup scheduled for May 15-19

The city of Aspen Street Departments annual spring cleanup event is taking place May 15-19.

Aspen residents who schedule an appointment with the street department can have large trash items picked up curbside at their residence, city officials said. Call 970-920-5130 no later than 4 p.m. on Friday, May 12, to schedule pickup.

According to the city:

  • Items must be sorted by type which includes branches and wood of eight feet or less in length, metals, trash, tires, and leaves in compostable bags.
  • All piles must be labelled “City of Aspen Spring Clean-Up”, or they will not be picked up. Branches and wood must be placed parallel to the street.
  • Items not eligible for pick-up include household garbage, construction debris, batteries, paint, oil, refrigerators, hazardous waste, televisions, and any electronics with a memory chip. If these items are left on the curb, they will not be picked up. Alley pick-up service is not possible.
  • Electronic waste can be recycled during the City of Aspen’s E-Waste Collection Event in the fall.

More information is available at

Nature journaling class at Carbondale Library

Adults who wish to explore, observe, and creatively document nature are invited to join Romana Davies for a two-part class at the Carbondale Branch Library on the different forms of nature journaling.

Minimal supplies are provided and attendees are encouraged to bring their own journals and drawing implements. The class will be held from 1-2:30 p.m. on the Fridays of May 19 and June 16. The class is free and open to all. For more information, call 970-963-2889.

Cancer center adds radiation oncologist

Board-certified radiation oncologist Lauren Kropp, MD, has joined the Calaway-Young Cancer Center, part of the Valley View health system based in Glenwood Springs.

When planning radiation treatments, she said she focuses on advanced technologies while developing individualized treatment plans in order to reduce the side effects of treatment. 

Dr. Kropp is a member of Radiating Hope, a non-profit organization that strives to improve radiation oncology care internationally. With the organization, she has traveled to Nepal and Chile on advocacy trips, supporting those nations’ radiation oncology practices.

I-70 roadwork near DeBeque starts this week

The Colorado Department of Transportation will begin resurfacing work Tuesday along Interstate 70 east of DeBeque for three miles. United Companies of Grand Junction is the contractor for the project.

“This project will create a smoother, safer ride for residents and commuters on this busy section of I-70 that is critical for the Western Slope,” said CDOT Executive Director Shoshana Lew. “CDOT is committed to improvements along the entire I-70 corridor. These surface and safety improvements are part of that effort and build on efforts last year across the corridor, including in nearby stretches close to Rifle.

Construction will take place on I-70 east of DeBeque from Mile Point 65 to MP 68. Work will include the placement of a 2-inch hot mix asphalt overlay, striping, rumble strip installation, guardrail replacement, three culvert treatments, replacing bridge rail, and performing minor bridge repair. The HMA will add approximately 10 years of life to the interstate, provide a smoother road surface and will add durability by increasing the resistance of ruts and road damage. This will allow for a smoother and safer drive for motorists, officials said. 

“Like many parts of the state, the western portion of the I-70 corridor is an important part of the rural, local economies in Mesa and Garfield counties,” said Region 3 Transportation Director Jason Smith. “It’s important for such a key roadway to make business as easy as possible.”

Other benefits of the project include installation of new guardrail that will be 31 inches high, designed to meet new safety standard requirements. The higher railing will help veering vehicles remain on the road more effectively, making the highway safer for the traveling public. The former standard height of guardrail was 27 inches.

United Country Colorado Brokers & Auctioneers wins top company award

Gary Hubbell of United Country Colorado Brokers & Auctioneers, with offices in Hotchkiss and Carbondale, recently won received the top marketing award for all 550 United Country Offices, The Genesis Award. 

“To join this amazing fraternity of United Country’s Genesis Award winners is a true honor,” he said. “I started cashing checks as a professional photographer way back in the 1980s, so I’ve always understood the power of great imagery. … We just put a ranch under contract with a buyer who still has to come walk the property. He said he didn’t need to see it right away — our marketing explained the property so well that he felt comfortable putting it under contract before even seeing it in person.”

United Country Colorado Brokers & Auctioneers has expanded to cover a wide swath of western Colorado.