Rachel skates for Aspen Hockey
Dear Editor:As a recreation-league hockey player and on-ice official for rec league and Mother Pucker hockey games, I am grateful, along with my fellow women and men, girls and boys hockey players, and figure and recreational skaters throughout the valley for the great and reasonable ice times the city of Aspen provides for all of us. This is because this mountain city sports not one but two ice skating facilities, a rarity for a city of this size. The fact that Aspen does have these two skating rinks for our youth and adults alike can be directly attributed to the existence of the Aspen Recreation Center (ARC).The grand opening of the ARC, including the ice-skating facility, a beautiful regulation-size, state-of-the-art sheet of ice, was a great moment in the history of Aspen. This premier facility may not have come to pass without the vision, guidance, dedication and hard work for our community from Rachel Richards, then mayor of Aspen, devoting her energy and assisting the many partners who collaborated on this project. The ARC’s immeasurable success was highlighted this past weekend (and will be the next two) during the “Fall Face Off” event at the ARC and Aspen Ice Garden which brought girls and boys hockey teams from all over the state into town for what will be three glorious weekends of hockey! Imagine the extra revenue brought into town for our local businesses during this “offseason” time of the year? A welcome influx of dollars for our townÆs businesses, indeed!And through it all the rec league was able to include on its schedule two games, at 6 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Sunday night! Prime-time hockey at times that would never be possible with only one skating rink, let alone the fact that Aspen could never imagine hosting an event like the Fall Face Off while still accommodating its own local recreational league’s games for our women and men.The ARC is just one of the many great accomplishments that Rachel Richards has been involved in over the years of dedicated public service to this community. The list goes on, including securing the Yellow Brick School for child care, the Red Brick Arts and Recreation Center, and multi-use ball fields at the schools for our community’s youth.Rachel will most certainly take her years of community vision, guidance, dedication and hard work to her next position as Pitkin County Commissioner representing District 2. Vote for Rachel Richards this Tuesday, Nov. 7, to keep her working for Pitkin County to ensure that great projects like the ARC come to fruition.Paul HempelAspen
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