Aspen Times Roses and Thorns (Dec. 14, 2018) |

Aspen Times Roses and Thorns (Dec. 14, 2018)

Four roses to Aspen Skiing Co. for making all the right moves to get its ski areas open ahead of schedule or on time with an abundance of terrain.

As usual, the work by the snowmakers, groomers, ski patrol and other mountain operations folks was phenomenal. The invisible workforce — the men and women who work behind the scenes — is second to none at Aspen Mountain, Aspen Highlands, Buttermilk and Snowmass. Their hard work at the start of the ski season is benefiting every skier and rider in the valley.

We will throw in extra roses for the savvy marketing plan to get more people out on the slopes early in the season by offering the $39 vouchers. That was a big boon for those of us who don’t have a full pass. And, given the conditions, it probably helped boost Skico coffers this early season. Let’s hope the vouchers aren’t one-and-done this season.

Thorns go to city of Aspen officials who continue to push forward initiatives that affect members of this community without giving clear communication that it’s happening. We saw another example of it this week — taxi and limo drivers and bike shop owners were blindsided when the city announced it was partnering with Lyft to provide ground transportation for commuters at no cost or at a subsidized rate. They stormed City Hall on Monday night and told elected officials exactly what they thought of the unfair competition the city was creating for them. Luckily, council listened to their concerns and put off the contract. We urge the powers-that-be to please give people a heads-up when they are about to mess with their lives or livelihoods.

Roses to the dude getting in his exercise while at the bus stop at the Intercept Lot at 9:10 a.m. Wednesday. While waiting for the bus, the guy was using a bench to do some pushups and warm up for the ski day. Good on you — getting your body in tune and riding mass transit!

A thorn goes to each and every driver who blocked intersections on Main Street on Wednesday night during the snowstorm, causing even more gridlock on the secondary roads. We wish the city would have gotten traffic control out sooner to make those people get out of the intersections and let motorists in. It was complete mayhem and could have been prevented if people just followed the rules of the road, which is not to stop in the middle of an intersection. Come on people, this is pretty basic stuff.

Roses to the crews who have spent the past few weeks stringing holiday lights all around Aspen and Snowmass. From the Aspen pedestrian mall to the trees at Snowmass Chapel, the early-season snow has made the lights even more beautiful this season.

We’ve been watching as crews have climbed ladders and into the tall branches or hovered above in cherry-pickers, and their work again has turned the valley into a postcard scene.

A thorn to the Isis Theater for locking the doors before the last movie showing even starts. It’s understandable that the kids working the register want to get out of there early, but closing before 8:15 on a Friday night is a bit ridiculous.

Roses to the officials at RFTA who reached out to us after our Thorn a few weeks ago about riders continuously talking to drivers while the bus is in motion. They appreciated our insight and said they would make an effort to remind drivers of the safety concerns.

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