JAS transportation issues
On Friday, my husband and I attended JAS Festival. We were in the vendor area when lightning and thunder started so we decided to head to the buses. As we were walking we heard the announcement that the concert was canceled and everyone was to leave and take shelter. Fortunately by then we were in line near the end of the Snowmass bus queue within the serpentine barriers. It then started to pour rain, with frequent thunder and lightning. It took us over an hour to get on a bus. I can’t imagine how long it took everyone else behind us who came from the main concert area. The primary problem was insufficient buses assigned to the Snowmass route. In previous years, there were four or five buses lined up to load passengers going to Snowmass. By the time some were filled and on their way, the others had returned. So even though there were lines, they moved quickly. On Friday, that was not the case. We stood for 10 to 15 minutes at a time with no movement and no bus in sight. We were told by the Roaring Fork Transportation Authority bus driver that although 15 buses were assigned to the festival, only two serviced Snowmass. Adding to the problem was that, because of the rain, people climbed over and knocked aside the barriers and barged to the front of the line.
We were fortunate we brought warm clothes, rain gear and umbrellas so we were not as uncomfortable during the wait as most others around us. We talked to several people in line from out of town who wondered if this was the way it had worked in the past. They said they were not going to come back. What a terrible impression they will leave with of our beautiful town.
I’m not sure who is responsible for this outrage. Certainly the rain exacerbated the situation. But even without the rain, there were still insufficient buses to handle the number of people attending the festival. Did JAS skimp on the money to pay for transportation this year? Did RFTA not have enough drivers? Did the town of Snowmass Village decide not to use the Village Shuttle as in the past? We will not be going to future JAS concerts unless this is fixed.
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With much sorrow I heard of the passing of a good friend Bruce Berger. He was a man for all seasons, a pianist, prolific author, environmentalist, and lover of Aspen.