Profits from liquor sales on Fanny Hill spur debate in Snowmass
Snowmass Village correspondent
Aspen, CO Colorado
SNOWMASS VILLAGE – Liquor sales from concerts on Fanny Hill last summer netted the town about $30,000 in profit – a windfall that two members of the Snowmass Village Town Council believe is wrong.
Still, Arnie Mordkin and John Wilkinson failed to convince their colleagues that the Marketing, Group Sales and Special Events Board needs to redo its 2010 budget in order to ensure there’s no gain from liquor sales. This summer, profit from booze is budgeted at $35,000, according to Snowmass Tourism Manager Susan Hamley. Mordkin spoke of the “uproar” that resulted three years ago when the town decided to ban the practice of bringing one’s own liquor on the hill and categorized the earnings as “sleight of hand. We agreed that (profit from) liquor sales by themselves would be a zero.”
He went on to say, “There comes a time when you either stand up for what you said you were going to do or you don’t.”
Hamley responded that the profit came because Snowmass Tourism was able to secure a liquor sponsor, adding that these additional dollars are being used to fund more Thursday night concerts in 2010.
While Councilman Reed Lewis said he agreed in principle with Mordkin and Wilkinson – that liquor sales should not be a profit center, he said it’s more important to host additional free shows.
“I think we need to look at the big picture,” he said.
Lewis, who owns a liquor store, said, “I think the prices are very fair.” A beer on Fanny Hill is $2, he noted.
Wilkinson said he remembers “quite a community uproar” when the town decided to halt bring-your-own booze in 2007. It was also noted in the meeting that during the first summer that beer and wine was sold on Fanny Hill, proceeds were donated to various nonprofit organizations. In subsequent years, the proceeds have landed in the town coffers.
Councilwoman Markey Butler said that, while she understands the heated discussions of several years ago, times have changed. “I think we have bigger fish to fry,” she said.
The board majority agreed to keep the profits from liquor sales, at least this summer, plugging them back into the event.
Support Local Journalism
Support Local Journalism
Readers around Aspen and Snowmass Village make the Aspen Times’ work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.
Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.
Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.
Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.
User Legend: Moderator Trusted User
Oral family history provides context that textbooks lack. Tying personal experience to collective events renders them relevant. Most of us have family oral history going back only a few generations, but that spans more history than you might think.