Snowmass Antiques Fair canceled
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado
SNOWMASS VILLAGE ” Organizers have pulled out of the Snowmass Antiques Fair, scheduled for July 20-22 in Snowmass Village, saying it was too difficult to run the show without any support.
But Snowmass Village marketing staffers say they bent over backward to accommodate the annual antique fair, including heavily marketing the event and rearranging the Snowmass Village schedule to give the organizers their preferred date.
“We moved bike races around for those women,” said Beth Albert, senior marketing manager.
And now it’s too late to give the prime weekend to another event organizer, noted staffers, who say they can’t remember an event cancellation in Snowmass Village.
Mary Nyholm-Vidano, co-owner of MC Presents, said she and her partner sent a letter to town staff in June listing their concerns. Snowmass Village events director
Josh Behrman acknowledged that he received the letter. But he said that when he
called, MC Presents told him it had already contacted its antique dealers to cancel.
And Susan Hamley, Snowmass Village marketing director, called the letter confusing.
“We read [the letter] and still had no idea what she was talking about,” Hamley said.
Staffers were not able to locate a copy of the letter by the end of the day on Wednesday.
Behrman also said he had met with the organizers on their visit several months ago and tried to respond to their concerns, but couldn’t meet all their requests. For example, the women wanted him to give them a firm date when the Maroon Creek
Bridge would reopen, he said ” something he argued no one could have supplied.
Nyholm-Vidano said she and her partner first became concerned when she visited several months ago and found most Snowmass Village businesses closed.
But Behrman argues that village businesses are open and thriving, and revenue is up.
Nyholm-Vidano also complained that the date for the fair was listed incorrectly in an Aspen-Snowmass marketing magazine.
Albert acknowledged the mistake, but said it happened in part because the date was changed so many times to accommodate the organizers. And she argued that the date was correct in all other marketing materials.
Nyholm-Vidano went on to argue that Snowmass is simply not a good place for a fair.
“I think Snowmass, as a venue for anything, is difficult because it is very difficult to get people living in Aspen” to drive out there, she argued.
But Behrman noted that last month’s Chili Pepper and Brew Fest drew upward of 8,000 people.
“We’re definitely not having any trouble getting people up to Snowmass,” he said.
Finally, Nyholm-Vidano noted that gas prices have made events organizers more leery of scheduling events.
“It’s a very serious undertaking ” and you have to know your dealers are going to make some money,” she said.
But Hamley pointed out that the Aspen-Snowmass audience is affluent enough to likely make the trip worthwhile for an antiques dealer.
For now, MC Presents has said it would consider returning to Snowmass Village once Base Village is built, in the hopes that the new, lower village will have an easier time of attracting people.
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