An arts council for Christmas

Dear Santa,

Can we please have an arts council for Christmas? A real one with authority to distribute real estate transfer bucks just like voters called for when we passed 2A? Santa (is that Aspen City Council this year?), please!

I just got a stressed-out email from the North Pole that “grant workshop elves want reinforcements now!” They must have help from real artists to envision our future. Santa, Aspen led the world to stop smoking in restaurants. Help us turn real estate taxes into essential creativity.

Our students are in a serious “mental health” crisis, which directly relates to lack of creative support. No to copying artists from somewhere else, building upgrades, and escalating high administrative salaries. Yes to our creative employees in our schools as teachers, artists-in-residence, playwrights in our theaters, and living writers in our library.

Our students and community have suffered from too much money spent on rote learning. There’s been unprecedented pressure to comply with imposed government Grinches who disregard our individual spirits. Our town’s spirit is dimmed. Brighten us again!

Santa, you didn’t hire an artist elf to build the Brooklyn Bridge, and you wouldn’t engage an engineer to create our cultural future. You wouldn’t have to put Off-Broadway fellows (myself included,) nor our Academy Award winning writers, nor our world-class painters in your sack.

We can walk right into our new city hall as ready as we’ll ever be for the first review meetings to serve as well as apply, just like elected council members do when they vote for themselves. We didn’t know about the new deadlines until the elves contacted us. Please invite us to join the public grants committee ASAP before Jan. 7 when applications are due so we can come prepared.

Sarah A. Pletts