In Brief: Klug Foundation honored; move your snowmobiles off Aspen Mountain; city aims for formal public art plan |

In Brief: Klug Foundation honored; move your snowmobiles off Aspen Mountain; city aims for formal public art plan

Staff Report

Aspen-based transplant foundation accepts proclamation

With Skippy Mesirow looking on from Bali in his and Rachael Richards’ last session on the Aspen City Council on Tuesday, Mayor Torre took advantage of the full house for the changeover to the new council to recognize National Donate Life Month, which raises awareness about organ, eye, and tissue donation and encourages Americans to register as donors.

Chris Klug was there to accept a proclamation on behalf of the foundation bearing his name that has inspired and educated over half a million individuals across the country.  

“Thanks to the City Council and everyone here,” he said. “This is something we can all celebrate. We have a 67% donor designation in Colorado, the highest in the nation.

“We can be very proud,” he said. “Our mantra at the foundation is live life and give life, that’s my life’s mission and our organization’s mission. We want to inspire others going through the transplant process 22 years ago like I did.”

Skico needs snow vehicles moved for Pandora work

Aspen Snowmass crews will be undertaking the second phase of the Pandora’s terrain expansion and lift installation on Aspen Mountain this summer and will be using all of the space behind the Silver Queen Gondola and into Pandora’s for movement of equipment and construction access, Vice President of Communications Jeff Hanle said Tuesday.

To facilitate preparing the terrain for future opening, all snowmobiles, mini-cats and other over-the-snow machines parked at the top of Aspen Mountain will need to be removed by Sunday, April 23, (closing day for Aspen Mountain), he said. 

“It’s important that we get as much time as possible to work on this project, and that we have the clear access and egress for vehicles and crews,” said Katie Ertl, senior vice president of mountain operations at Aspen Snowmass. “If you have a private, over-the-snow vehicle of any type parked on top of Aspen Mountain or know someone who does, please make sure it is moved by April 23, so we can commence work. Just think how amazing it will be to be skiing and riding this area next winter.”

As part of the Pandora’s project, the Marina — the snowmobile parking area on top of Aspen Mountain — will be moved to the west of its current location next year. Email questions to

Aspen aims to develop Public Art Plan

The city of Aspen and the Red Brick Center for the Arts are developing a Public Art Plan with consultants Kendall Peterson of ThereSquared and Jill Stilwell of Stilwell Cultural Consulting. This plan aims to reflect a deep understanding of arts and culture that benefits the Aspen community. 

This Public Art Plan will be formed around community conversation and engagement to better incorporate art into public spaces, city officials said. Public art also supports artists, creative expression, and facilitates powerful experiences in communities, they said. 

Sarah Roy, director of Red Brick Center for the Arts, said: “Art and culture are a part of Aspen’s DNA and a beloved aspect that makes Aspen so special. We are inviting all to join us in this community engagement to create a shared vision for how public art can forge connection to each other and place.” 

The Public Art Plan consultation is scheduled for May until December, when it will be finalized for approval. Although Aspen has artwork in public spaces, the city doesn’t have a formal public art program.

Community engagement opportunities such as questionnaires, educational events, and feedback solicitation will help shape the future of public art in Aspen, officials said. These efforts will help crafting a plan that outlines a vision, goals, and best practices for incorporating art into public spaces. The first community engagement activity is a pavement art installation in collaboration with the Aspen Ideas Festival on June 25. 

For more information on engagement opportunities, please take a survey here:

Carbondale Arts group exhibition and reception Friday

Carbondale Arts will present “From the Center: Maps, Wefts, Shifts, Hoops,” a group exhibition curated by Marcia Weese, at the Carbondale Arts Gallery on April 14-May 18.

Featured artists include Elizabeth Newman, Emily Payne, Augusta Talbot, and Marcia Weese.

The community is invited to the opening reception on Friday from 5-7 p.m. at The Launchpad, with an artist talk at 5:30.

Organizers said this group show binds together four women: “all mid-career artists, all witnesses to the everyday. All have been wives, all are mothers, and all continue to weave life’s fabric in the studio. The warp and weft are palpable in these works. The domestic chores, the subjugation, the transcendence, the perseverance, the folding of sheets, the mending of nets, the flapping of wings.”

Show curator and local printmaker Marcia Weese said she “dedicates this current series ‘Hoops,’ to
centuries of brave women who have been subjugated by the patriarchy to dress up, truss up, shut
up, and carry on, not unlike caged butterflies.”

Each artist works in multiple materials — sculpture, collage, wax, assemblage, drawing, etching,
painting, printing. Each employs a serious and whimsical approach to art making. Each bears a
message — to rise continuously with the rigor and honor of being female, of being human.

For more details, visit

City’s food tax refund deadline April 18

The last day to submit food tax refund applications is Tuesday, April 18, at 5 p.m. If you haven’t already done so, city of Aspen officicials ask that you consider completing an application (found on the city’s website) before the deadline, as late applications cannot be accepted.

The city will continue reviewing all received applications during the month of April and residents can expect refund checks to be mailed by early May, officials said.  

To qualify for the Food Sales Tax Refund, applicants must:  

  • Submit the Food Sales Tax Refund application by the deadline.  
  • Have resided within the Aspen city limits for the full 2022 year.  
  • Have been registered to vote in the City of Aspen from 1/1/22-12/31/22.   
  • Be able to prove residency within Aspen city limits for 2022, and if still living within the city, ensure your current address is the same as your registered voter address. There are some exceptions to qualify.  

The city created food sales tax refunds as an incentive to encourage voters to support a sales tax referendum. It was intended to reimburse voters for the approximate amount of sales tax that they would pay annually on grocery purchases due to the imposition of a 1% city sales tax.   

Application and more information at

If you need assistance completing the application, visit the Finance window, second floor of City Hall at 427 Rio Grande Place.

Safe flying seminar attracted 70 from region

A seminar on safe mountain flying sponsored by Signature Aviation drew 70 people from teenagers to 80-year-olds to the Vail Valley Jet Center last Saturday.

Aviation manager and FAA inspector David Cole from Denver led the half-day seminar. Attendees received Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) WINGS Pilot Proficiency Program credits for continuing to improve their knowledge and skills. 

“This was an outstanding opportunity for ‘wing nuts’ — those folks that love airplanes — to review the basics and expand their knowledge,” he said. “Pilots were able to learn from others’ experiences and can apply their new knowledge every time they climb in the cockpit.”

A long-time Aspen pilot and board member of the Aspen Flight Academy, Andrew Doremus, said, “It felt like the old days when pilots would do a fly-in, then sit around and talk about their experiences.” 

Attendees hailed from Aspen, Glenwood Springs, Eagle, Vail, Telluride, the Front Range, and Grand Junction. Among them were three certified flying instructors and five high-school students from the Aspen Flight Academy, plus several teenage students from Alpine Flight Instruction in the Eagle Valley. Pilots from as far away as California and Mexico brought their aircraft to the event. 

Cole highlighted common pilot errors and focused on a basic review of FAA guidelines. Much of his attention was given to solution-based tips to avoid the risks that Colorado mountain airports often see — which are often a result of unstabilized approaches or landing in windy conditions. 

He said small planes with new pilots may not have the experience to adjust for the crosswinds they may encounter during their final approaches. He said many of the accidents in mountainous terrain are attributed to pilot error when reviewing statistics but could be corrected through pilot training.

“Their previous experiences at lower altitudes give them a false perception when flying in the mountains,” he said. In learning to fly, up to 90% of new pilots haven’t experienced 20 knot crosswinds that they face when landing at many mountain airports, he said. 

“This event amplified people’s passion for flying and exceeded my expectations by 300%,” said Paul Gordon, Signature Aviation manager at the Vail Valley Jet Center. “We were delighted to serve as the host for this educational fly-in, and we’re looking forward to a continuing series of educational events as part of our vision for safer skies in Colorado.”

CMC Sustainability and Ecosystem Science Conference set for April 21

Colorado Mountain College’s sustainability studies program will host its seventh Sustainability and Ecosystem Science Conference from 9 a.m.-noon on April 21, a day before Earth Day.  

“Climate Justice and Nature in Colorado” will be accessible by Zoom throughout CMC’s nine-county district and will be followed by in-person events at CMC Breckenridge, Vail Valley at Edwards, Steamboat Springs and Spring Valley at Glenwood Springs. The conference is free and the public is welcome to register and attend.  

Beatriz Soto, director of Conservation Colorado’s Protogéte program, will provide the conference’s keynote address. Soto, a Roaring Fork Valley architect and Garfield County commissioner candidate, was a founding board member of Voces Unidas de las Montañas, a Latino and Latina advocacy non-profit, and was previously director of the Wilderness Workshop’s Defiende Nuestra Tierra initiative. She will be presenting Latino-centered research on the issues of race, economic class, and environmental harms and benefits in Colorado.  

The conference will also feature CMC President Dr. Carrie Besnette Hauser, who will describe the college’s educational and operational visions regarding climate justice. Additionally, students graduating from the college’s sustainability studies program will give brief research presentations in online breakout rooms.  

Post-conference activities include in-person presentations and a reception at CMC Steamboat Springs, an Earth Day road cleanup at CMC Spring Valley, a community panel at CMC Vail Valley plus films, food and presentations at CMC Breckenridge and Dillon, which are all free and open to the public.  

For more information about all the on-campus activities and to register for the virtual conference, visit