The way Aspen should be | AspenTimes.com

The way Aspen should be

Dear Editor:I started waitressing part-time at the Red Onion two and a half years ago. I was coming off of my first spring offseason and I was broke, and a second job was necessary. Although my budgeting has gotten better and I have a consistent salary these days, I have never given up my job at the Red Onion. It’s become so much more than my second job, it’s my second home.Being so far away from my family on the East Coast, the staff and patrons of the Onion have become a big part of my new Aspen family, one that is so important to me. In fact, when I got married two months ago, it was easy to figure out where the reception would be. Wabs and the rest of the staff at the Onion put on the perfect party!On Monday, Wabs told me the sad news of the Onion’s closing before my evening waitshift. That night, a couple came in and told me that it was their first time back to Aspen in 36 years. They didn’t remember too much and Aspen had seemed to change a lot since the early 1970s. They were glad to see that at least one thing (the Onion) was still the same; something that reminded them of the Aspen that they had loved so long ago. It was about the hundredth time that I’d heard a story like this, but on this night, it nearly brought me to tears.I have gray-haired ladies who come in, sip on coffee and tell me that they were waitresses at the Red Onion when they were my age. I see grandparents come in with their grandchildren. They show them the pictures on the wall and tell them that Grandpa met Grandma at the Red Onion, way back when.This is more than a restaurant and bar, it’s Aspen the way it should be. If we lose the Red Onion, we lose our sense of history; we lose our grip on the soul of this town – because what is a town without its character? What are we sacrificing to turn a profit? I know how much the Onion means to me and to others that patron it these days. I know how fondly it rests in the memories of all those that have ever loved Aspen in the past. I know just how much we are going to lose if we lose the Red Onion.How much is it worth? Aspen, if you love the Onion, voice your support, write a letter, go buy a “Save the Onion” T-shirt, Let people know that you care about what happens to your town.Ashley ReynoldsAspen

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