On the town: Endless party | AspenTimes.com

On the town: Endless party

Stewart Oksenhorn
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO, Colorado

ASPEN – Logging 20 years in Aspen, having a wife and child and putting in 18 years at the same 9-to-5 job can easily make you forget the “resort” side of Aspen.

And there was nothing like Saturday to remind you that there is that other side: that Aspen – or at least part of it – can seriously party.

I was at the Sky Hotel for the mellowest of reasons: to visit my sister, who was staying there, and to give my daughter some time in the pool. And sure, to chow down a few of the hotel’s soft pretzels with the ridiculously spicy mustards (far better pretzels than you’ll get from a Manhattan street vendor, and don’t even get me started on Philadelphia, pretender to the soft-pretzel title).

But the Sky had something other than mellow time for me. The list of things I failed to consider is long: It was St. Paddy’s Day. It was spring break. It was Saturday. It was a day more summery than springlike. It was the Sky Hotel poolside patio.

It was March Madness, and there was true madness going on at that little Hades tucked away at the bottom of Aspen Mountain. People really were dancing in ski boots – and not just for effect. They wanted to dance, and they happened to be in their ski boots. A girl tried to carry as many cans of beer in her hands as she had tattoos on her body – and failed. Neil Diamond’s “Sweet Caroline” played over the speakers, and though I didn’t see a DJ in attendance, when it got to the chorus, the P.A. shut off, cueing the crowd to scream the lyrics.

Fortunately, the one place my daughter and I wanted to be – in the pool – was virtually empty. (Yes, one guy did get thrown in – with ski boots on.)

Just before we headed to the Sky, I had called a friend to see if he wanted to meet us over there, maybe bring his very young kids along. Man, am I glad he turned us down. What was I thinking?

Here’s what I’m thinking now: The distance between my house and the Sky patio seems like a lot more than a few blocks.


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