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People of the Times

Patrick Fox (Courtesy Georgia Hanson)
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Everyone who’s ever driven on Highway 82 knows of Pat Fox – they’ve seen the infamous painting of “The Finger” on the roof of his Woody Creek barn. (Is there something in the water down there?) It’s quite a pretty painting, with a lovely blue sky for a background and that lone surrealistic finger sticking up.What people may not know is that Pat first skied Aspen Mountain in 1946, the first year of the ski resort, when his father brought the family from Evanston, Ill., on a vacation. Pat was on the Aspen Mountain Ski Patrol for many years, a true veteran of the slopes.He is now happily retired in Battlement Mesa, working on his book “Let the Finger Do the Walking.” Everyone will be in it, he says, and it’ll be a comedy.His cheerful words of advice to all: “The Flying Finger Man says the world is still f****d, and is getting worse by the minute.”You tell ’em, Fox.- Carla Peltonen

Jony (Poschman) Larrowe came to aspen in 1950, after marrying a 10th mountain trooper who shared her passion for powder skiing. They chose Aspen over Sun Valley or Alta on the advice of her mother who had been to the Goethe Bicentennial and was impressed with Aspen’s cultural scene. She and Harry Poschman started the Edelweiss ski lodge on Main Street, later the location of the Copper Horse.They charged $2.75 a night for a bed and for breakfast made on her wood stove. Harry worked as a ski instructor and carpenter, and Jony wrote and photographed essays about her adventures in the mountains, took passport and marketing photos, catered, wrote a cookbook, sold hand-painted greeting cards and enameled jewelry – anything she could do creatively to raise her three kids in Aspen. In 1973 Jony married Peter Larrowe, and they live in El Jebel today.- Greg Poschman

Though many of our Aspen friends thought Mom and our whole family were always in Aspen, that is not quite so. Phoebe had a lovely and lively life even pre-Aspen.She and my father George W. Ryerson were old Chicagoans and the parents of six. Both were well-traveled, good sporting types, and involved in many ways with helping others. In 1952 Mom founded the Winnetka Children’s Fair as a benefit. The Children’s Fair was held for many summers thereafter at the Village Green. Games were played and contested mightily, marvelous food was available and a play was produced. Everyone in town was there.A veteran of the Chicago Junior League and Service Club shows, Mom loved the theater and it was inevitable that she again directed two of her favorite plays when she moved to Aspen in the early 70s. “Alice in Wonderland” and “Peter Pan” played to enthusiastic crowds at the old Jerome pool. She was not shy about casting and coerced many Aspen favorites to be her actors. This was Phoebe at her best!- Bunny Harrison

Frank and John Dolinsek were born and raised on South Monarch street where they still live. Aspen Mountain and skiing have always been their backyard. They made their own skis using inner tubes to tie their shoes to the skis. Frank and John tell stories of skiing from Aspen Mountain all the way to the Hotel Jerome, with the loser having to buy ice cream.Both Frank and John served in World War II. Frank was in the 10th Mountain Division, and John served in the Navy in the Pacific. They returned home and built the Number 1 and 2 lifts on Aspen Mountain. Friends call them “jacks-of-all-trades” and tinkerers. They walked up the mountain every day to survey; they cut the first ski trails with a hand ax. During winters, Frank and John lived on the mountain and skied down to start the lifts. Frank was on the ski patrol on Aspen Mountain. On a bet for a case of beer, John got the first television channel to broadcast in Aspen.

Frank worked for the city of Aspen as a welder and John worked for the post office until their retirements in the 1990s. Their nomination to the Hall of Fame said Frank and John had vision, imagination and loved the sport of skiing. Frank and John dedicated their entire lifetime to their home and hometown.- Kathryn Koch


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