News in Brief |

News in Brief

Aspen Times staff reportAspen, CO Colorado

ASPEN – The St. Regis Aspen unveiled a brand-new bar area and remodeled meeting spaces when it reopened Tuesday for the summer season, though renovations to nearly half of the hotel’s 179 guest rooms will continue through the next few months. The four-star hotel closed in April to undergo a $30 million renovation, which is currently on track, said Kristi Kavanaugh, director of sales and marketing for the St. Regis.According to Kavanaugh, the hotel was scheduled to re-open in time for the Food & Wine Classic with at least 90 guest rooms; 105 are currently available to rent. Renovations to the remainder of the guest rooms will be complete by December, and Kavanaugh said summer guests should experience little disruption due to the ongoing construction.”It’s hard to anticipate exactly what will happen, but we are not concerned about our guests’ experience,” she said. “We are taking great care to be sure any noise occurs during the middle of the day, and we will continue to manage the project with our guests in mind.”In addition to the newly remodeled Shadow Mountain Lodge, meeting spaces and guest rooms, the hotel plans to update its fitness center and retail shops, as well as its pool area. It will announce “an exciting partnership and details of our new, one-of-a-kind restaurant concept” later this summer.

ASPEN – Locals and visitors are invited to attack the weeds at the Moore Open Space in Aspen on Saturday, June 25 – the first-ever weed pull organized by the Roaring Fork Outdoor Volunteers.Volunteers are needed to help remove several species of invasive weeds, including plumeless thistle and houndstongue, on the Moore property, located between the roundabout and the Aspen Recreation Center. The family-friendly work day is hosted by RFOV in partnership with the city of Aspen and Pitkin County Open Space and Trails.The biggest threats on the county-managed property are plumeless thistle and houndstongue. They are aggressive and difficult to control among the native plants found on open space, according to Chris Forman, Aspen city forester. Left unchecked, they would spread to other properties, he said.The weed pull is a new sort of endeavor for RFOV, which more typically tackles trail-building projects and occasional planting efforts, noted David Hamilton, executive director.”We hope there is a huge volunteer turnout for this initiative, which would be a good indication that we need to add conservation projects like this to our schedule,” Hamilton said in a press release. “This work is suitable for volunteers of all ages, so it is a nice opportunity for families to participate in a stewardship project.” Work begins at 8:30 a.m. and runs until 1 p.m., concluding with a free lunch for all volunteers. Tools and instruction will be provided. To volunteer, log on to, email or call 927-8241.

BASALT – Water releases from Ruedi Reservoir were cranked up Tuesday and Wednesday by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation to make room for the high amount of runoff entering the lake.The bureau increased the flow by 50 cubic feet per second (cfs) at noon both Tuesday and Wednesday. With flows from Rocky Fork, a creek below the dam, the flow was expected to be at 750 cfs by Wednesday evening in the lower Fryingpan River, the bureau said on its website. Flows “could go higher, depending on weather conditions and how snow pack run-off melts out,” the bureau said.The inflows to Ruedi have remained at about 1,300 cfs for the last two weeks. The reservoir is currently filled at a rate of 2 feet per day. “The increased releases will slow the rate of fill in the reservoir, but we still anticipate all boat ramps to be in the water a couple of weeks from now,” the website said.

BASALT – An agreement between the town of Basalt and Colorado Division of Wildlife regarding hours at the Basalt Shooting Range near Lake Christine worked well in theory, but not so well in practice.The Colorado Wildlife Commission approved changing the closing time on Sundays from 7 p.m. to 5 p.m., but signs at the state-owned facility were never changed.The shooting into the evening caught the attention of some nearby residents last Sunday, Basalt Town Manager Bill Kane said. Councilwoman Karin Teague said the shooting has gone into the evening the last several Sundays.”We’re on their case and hopefully it will be changed by next Sunday,” Kane said.Meanwhile, work progresses on a longer-term solution to baffle the sound of gunfire. The town acquired a $114,350 grant from the state earlier in the year to install sheds that will reduce noise from the pistol and rifle shooting platforms at the range. Another $49,000 was raised locally for the $163,000 project.The three-sided enclosures won’t work at the shotgun range.The town selected Noise Solutions Inc. to perform the work. There is no estimate yet on when the sheds will be built, Kane said.

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