Ready to get wet? | AspenTimes.com

Ready to get wet?

Please forward the following RSVP to Scott Writer.Yes, I will be attending your “Calling all Coghis” tour of Aspen’s new pool and ice facility. Friday mornings actually work best for me. The tour could actually be a pivotal turning point for the ice arena’s fund-raising efforts. (The pools raised their needed money in 1999.)Is it OK if I invite Sheldon Fingerman, who loves to crunch numbers, and Steve Bossart, pool and ice project manager, who is back from Mexico and ready for the “10 questions/10 dives” contest?Fact. To date, the ice fund-raising group has raised approximately $2.3 million in cash toward their $8 million pledge, which has allowed the city to almost complete phase one of the rink.Fact. The ice group still needs to collect on an additional $3 million in pledges they received, which will pay out by the year 2006.Fact. The ice group still needs to raise an additional $2.7 million to meet their pledge of $8 million.Fact. The city is building quicker than the fund-raising money is coming in for the new National Hockey League regulation rink with 585 permanent hockey lockers, 450 permanent bleacher seats, five changing locker rooms and video, sound and warming rooms.Fact. The youth center and indoor “bunker” pools CANNOT get a certificate of occupancy to open until the new NHL rink has at least lighting, sprinkler systems, stairs and some life safety issues addressed.Fact. On April 22, the Aspen City Council approved to spend $1.5 million to $2 million out of the city taxpayers’ general fund (which the ice group is supposed to pay back) to continue with the construction of the ice arena so that the opening of the youth center and the indoor “bunker” pools would not be further delayed.Fact. In mid-July the fund-raising group will again meet with the City Council, which will decide where to go from there. If the city has to finish the project alone, other projects (such as Cemetery Lane) would have to be eliminated.If Todd accepts Scott Writer’s invitation “to take the tour” maybe then Roger Marolt, Pete Luhn and Scott Writer could also take the plunge in the “dive” contest along with Steve Bossart and myself. Judges could be Councilman Tony Hershey and talk show host Andrew Kole – that is, if they are not afraid to get “wet.”Toni KronbergAspen