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News in Brief

Two 8-foot-tall dice will roll down the halfpipe at Buttermilk at 3:30 p.m. Sunday in a performance piece by Japanese artist Yutaka Sone.There’s just a question of whether a helicopter will fly them through the air and drop them or a snowcat will drag them up the face of Buttermilk and push them into the top of the halfpipe.”There’s no question at all that the dice will roll,” said Aspen Art Museum Director Heidi Zuckerman Jacobson. The museum is sponsoring the extravaganza.Although the Aspen Police Department is reportedly skeptical about using a helicopter to get the dice up the hill, Jacobson said Thursday that she has yet to hear that officially.And even if the chopper doesn’t happen, she said, a flatbed truck will take the dice from the museum to the base of Buttermilk, and snowcats will do the rest of the heavy lifting.According to planner Lance Clark of the Pitkin County Community Development Department, which is in charge of either approving or denying a special-use permit for the art project, the final decision may come as late as this evening.

The Aspen City Council will hold a public hearing Feb. 27 to consider revisions to water and electric service charges within the city and for contract service areas outside the municipal boundaries.City utility customers have the right to appear, in person or through counsel, at the hearing to offer input on the proposed rates. A copy of the associated ordinance, with the proposed rate schedule, will be available beginning at 1 p.m. today in the utility billing office at Aspen City Hall. The council’s Feb. 27 meeting begins at 5 p.m. in the council chambers, in the City Hall basement.

Former Pittsburgh Steelers lineman and NFL Hall-of-Famer Ernie Stautner died Thursday at Heritage Park Care Center in Carbondale. He was 80.Stautner had suffered from Alzheimer’s disease since 1998, his wife, Jill Stautner, said. The Stautners lived in the Eagle-Vail area and had been at Heritage Park for just over a week before his death.Jill Stautner said her husband enjoyed the Steelers’ 21-10 Super Bowl XL win Feb. 5.”Dan Rooney [Pittsburgh Steelers owner] called today and asked if Ernie got to see the game, and I said, ‘Yes, he enjoyed it very much.'”Stautner played his entire 14-year career with the Steelers and was named to nine Pro Bowls and four All-NFL teams as a defensive lineman.He may have been best known during his coaching days with the Dallas Cowboys under legendary coach Tom Landry. Stautner coached the defensive line for the Cowboys from 1966-72 and served as the team’s defensive coordinator from 1973-88. He was also a defensive line coach for the Denver Broncos under Dan Reeves from 1991-93. Jill and Ernie Stautner met while he was coaching with the Cowboys, and she worked in the organization’s business office; They married in 1991.The Stautners have had a home in the Vail area since 1989. Jill Stautner said they loved skiing around Vail.”He even skied after he had both his knees replaced. Against the doctor’s orders, of course,” Jill Stautner said with a laugh.He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1969. He was one of the lone bright spots for the Steelers, who never had a winning record during Stautner’s playing days. While coaching the Cowboys, Stautner faced the Steelers in two Super Bowls.


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