Kudos and Kindness from Aspen Times readers (June 9, 2019) | AspenTimes.com

Kudos and Kindness from Aspen Times readers (June 9, 2019)

Garco gets in the saddle

May 14 was Garfield County Bike to School Day and more than 1,500 students from 11 schools from Parachute to Carbondale rode their bikes, walked, scootered, rollerbladed or skateboarded to school.

Thank you to all the students, families, school faculty, principals and volunteers who participated to make this day such a success. Many students tried biking or human-powered ways of getting to school for the first time and thanks to the encouragement and free snacks upon arrival at school, had a great time doing it.

A huge thank-you also to the co-organizers and cosponsors Garfield Clean Energy, Garfield County Outdoors, RFTA, CLEER, Glenwood Springs Bicycle Advocates and Rifle Area Mountain Biking Organization. We would especially like to thank Alpine Bank Loyalty Card program for providing prize funding awarded to the schools with the largest number of participants. Every school should feel extremely proud of how many students participated.

Biking and human-powered transportation is a great way to get exercise, enjoy and protect the outdoors, get to know our neighbors and manage growing traffic in our region. Thank you to all involved for giving it a try, and looking forward to next year’s event!

Brandon Jones

Clean Energy Economy for the Region

Meredith Burke

Garfield County Outdoors

The kids are all right

After reading the articles on our valley’s graduation ceremonies from Aspen to Glenwood, I have never been so hopeful for the future! Congratulations, Class of 2019!

Carol Hawk


Crushing trash, Aspen style

Thanks to our 33 environmentally conscious volunteers and generous sponsors, our fourth annual Trash Crush on June 1 presented by Sun Dog Athletics and the Bull Market Report was a big success and a lot of fun. We truly crushed it, picking up litter along our most beautiful local roadways and the East of Aspen Trail filling over 20 oversized CDOT bags of trash and almost 10 bags of recyclables. We cleaned up Highway 82 east of town to the winter gate, from the roundabout up Castle Creek Road past Country Day School, Maroon Creek Road to Aspen Highlands and Highway 82 to Aspen Golf Course.

It’s cause for concern and, more importantly, time for action when we witness the type and amount of litter along all the roadways as we remove it. One can’t help but wonder how the litter got there, its story. Typically, it comes down to carelessness or recklessness. There are a lot of single-use containers. There’s more litter near the schools and construction sites, based on a few of our observations.

Pollution is a disease that’s slowly but surely killing Mother Earth like cancer. But, like many types of cancer, there’s a treatment and a cure. As a local and worldwide community, we can all be part of the cure through education and action focused on reducing pollution and cleaning up existing pollution.

We’d like to sincerely thank our great group of volunteers, who not only cleaned up our roadways and paths, but for sharing the importance and rewards of environmental stewardship. They demonstrated how easy and fun it can be to pick up litter. People who litter do not have ownership of our lands, as they don’t respect or care for them. We take ownership when we care for our pristine backyard. We’d like to acknowledge and thank our volunteers Greg Poschman, Ward Hauenstein, Phyllis and Grafton Smith, Chris Williams, LaRae Cantave, David Heather, Sam and Pete Louras, Bruce Lee, Ned Sullivan, Missy, Bali and River Klug, Coco Sohn, Clay Dahlman, Emily Marshall, Paula Creevey, Molly Ireland, Denise Lock, Lori Kret, Chris McKelvey, Jesse Thompson, Diane Spicer, Tom Cogg, Jim Hague, Marlene Schroeder, Gretchen Straub and friends Claudia Kirby and Steve Goldenberg on their solo missions for their time and efforts and for spreading our message. Thanks to Samantha Johnston and The Aspen Times and Troy Selby and 520 Grill for sponsoring our event, helping spread the word and hosting a hearty lunch to follow. Thanks to Cathy Hall and Pitkin County Landfill for donating state of the art reusable beverage containers and bamboo-ware for our volunteers. Thanks to Aspen Kayak and SUP and Nick Coates for their kind donations.

In just a few hours, we were able to make a positive difference in caring for nature. Locals and visitors will enjoy the great outdoors even more. If we all picked up just one piece of litter each day, it would make a big difference. Try it. Share it to create the ripple effect and multiplier effect. Cleaning up litter is rewarding and addictive!

Erik Skarvan and Todd Shaver

Co-organizers, 4th annual Trash Crush, Aspen

Good, clean fun in Snowmass

On behalf of the Snowmass Village Rotary Club, I’d like to send a special thank-you to Alpine Bank, the town of Snowmass Village and Tom Clark Jr. and the team at Snowmass’ Clark’s Market for the generous donation of time, energy, funds and food for our annual Town Clean Up Day held May 17. We had a great turnout for the event, even in the rainy weather, and cooked up all of the donated burgers and hot dogs during the lunch-time picnic.

We also want to thank all of the local businesses that donated prizes or personnel to make the event extra fun! Because of your generosity, our Rotary Club is able to stretch our resources to provide even more grants and scholarships throughout the Village and the valley. Thanks to all for making this a great annual community event!

Julie Ann Woods

President, Snowmass Village Rotary Club

Buddies for life

The Buddy Program, along with our greater community, is so proud to recognize the 42 young men and women who have been participants in our programs and who graduated this year. They are too numerous to list here, but they know who they are!

Many of them have had support from their caring adult mentor and many have been involved as mentors to younger youth at the elementary or middle schools in their communities. Additionally, many of these graduates have participated in our Outdoor Leadership courses at Basalt, Roaring Fork or Rifle high schools, a group-mentoring model where students support their peers and have an adult role model in our staff who serve as course leaders. We also would like to recognize the seniors who received a continuing education scholarship from our organization. They include: Logan Erickson, Emma Ernst, Edgar Ortiz, Nayeli Rivera, Fernando Ruiz and Alondra Torres. Thank you to the many donors who helped make these scholarships possible!

Take care graduates; remember who mentored you and don’t forget to give that back as you move forward in life!

Lindsay Lofaro

The Buddy Program