Ride the Rockies: boon for business
ASPEN At least one Aspenite saw opportunity when many of the Ride the Rockies’ 2,000 pedalers said they’d be hitting Aspen restaurants Thursday night.”I just thought it was a good way to earn money,” said Milo Stark, 15, who roved the crowd Thursday selling sodas and waters out of an insulated shoulder bag. He got the idea from his father, a serious rider who said long-distance cyclists crave drinks.Stark had bagged nearly $200 from among the 2,000 wallets around the tent city set up on the Aspen schools campus by late Thursday afternoon. And many of the riders said they planned to hit Thursday’s concert and have dinner in town – a likely boon to local businesses.Lee Bengston, 69, of Denver admitted that he and his two friends got “bogged down” at the Woody Creek Tavern along the route, and said the two beers he drank made the last hill to town “dastardly.”But despite the community meals event organizers put on, Bengston’s group has been going out to dinner each evening along the route: “You get tired of pancakes and spaghetti,” he said.”We’re going for sushi,” said Ride the Rockies first-timer Lynn Copp of Breckenridge. She got a tip from a local and planned to hit Takah with her group of seven.But Rosemary Burbank of Denver, a nine-year veteran who tackled the course alongside her husband on recumbent bikes, was keen to get a shower, eat the community meal and get a good night’s rest before the early-morning start for Independence Pass.”It’s just the early start,” Burbank said.
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