Kudos and Kindness (Dec. 20, 2020) | AspenTimes.com

Kudos and Kindness (Dec. 20, 2020)

It takes a village to build a Gingerbread House

The Buddy Program is so grateful for everyone who helped make December so “sweet” and spread holiday joy through our eighth annual Gingerbread House fundraiser!

Thank you to our host committee members, Helen and Jim Fifield, Candice and Jeff Gorsuch, Amanda and Bret Hirsh, Hannah Thompson and Karen Wing. Thank you to our event sponsors All Set Aspen, US Bank and The Aspen Times!

Over 70 businesses and individuals lent their support to ensure that over 130 youth in our programs were able to take kits home and enjoy with their family or Big Buddy, as well as raise over $122,000 to sustain and strengthen our year-round mentoring programs. An additional 80-plus individuals and families purchased their own custom decorating kit to support the Buddy Program as well!

Each December we are so grateful to our community for helping us to “build a better community for our youth one Gingerbread House at a time!” We are especially thankful that in the midst of an uncertain time, the community showed their strong support again.

Thank you!

Lindsay Lofaro

Executive director, Buddy Program

Flamingo flies high with community support

Thank you, Aspen community, for attending our first ever virtual Flamingo! Cynthia Chase, our fearless and determined director, you lead this event with adaptability and can-do operandi during the most challenging of days. Katherine Sand and the team at Aspen Family Connections shows us that when this pandemic grappled our town, Aspen cares for our families. From the weekly food distribution, to financial and emotional assistance, the support is critical. Your work is 24/7 and much deserving of receiving our Flamingo Honoree. Bravo, Katherine!

Thank you to Woody Creek Distillers and Local Spirits for the thoughtfully curated Flock Boxes. EKS Events, with Elizabeth as its driving force, your years of service to our school district continue to be overwhelmingly generous. Katie Viola from KVD for creating our Flamingo adorned with a mask slippers and bringing our Flamingo to life. Each year you imagine the creative design that drives our event. Michelle Sherlock, Klaus Obermeyer, Eli Genshaft, Jeremy Martin and Marcel Miracle, thank you for participating with such excitement.

Harry Kahn (AHS Class of 2017) and Calli Ferguson (Class of AHS 2017), how cool of you to come home and help your alma mater raise funds. Clearly Aspen High prepared you for life and college with grit, humor and tenacity! You have shown us that Aspen High School values students with a very well rounded experience in addition to outstanding academics.

Michelle Stiller

Board member, Aspen Education Foundation

Former chair, Flamingo


Chanukah parade lights up with agencies’ help

We would like to thank the Aspen fire and police departments for their assistance with our community Chanukah parade and celebration. Coming with their fire truck, flashing lights and all, to the great delight of children and adults.

A special thank you to Officer Lara Xaiz and Fire Chief Rick Balentine, Adam Cohen, Jason Lasser and Marc Zachary for taking time out of their busy schedule and making the Chanukah celebration the great success it was. Aspen is blessed to have such wonderful individuals in our amazing community.

Rabbi Mendel and Lieba Mintz

Chabad Jewish Community Center


Snowy trails for the people

After two knee surgeries and a manipulation, it was glorious to get out on the cross-country trails in Aspen the last couple of days! My first foray was with my wife and our dog on the Bernese Boulevard around the Aspen Golf Course. So exciting to see over 100 people out there enjoying the fresh air.

My next adventure was the other evening, when I went and skied the Rio Grande Trail from Slaughterhouse bridge up to the post office and back. The snow was soft and for some hikers it was a little bit difficult to walk. But there too it was wonderful to see so many different people out using the multi-use trail. As we get more snow and it gets groomed more often it will become a more firm surface and enjoyable for all. Thanks, Aspen Parks Department!

Craig Ward


City groomers elevate Aspen trails

The secret is out — some of the best in-town, cross-country skiing and walking is on the Rio Grande trail between Slaughterhouse and the post office. Skiing and walking down past the falls is also exceptional.

Many thanks to city of Aspen trail grooming team for the trail platform put down after our recent snowfall. It was a pleasure to ski by families with sleds for kids replacing the summer strollers. Lots of smiles. Looks to be a great experience along the Roaring Fork river this winter.

Howie Mallory


Support for Contemporary is support for the arts

I recently had the privilege of touring the new Contemporary while under construction. Ryan Honey, executive director, walked with us and explained the uses of the new facility and how the public will enjoy all of the enhanced areas.

I know that many of you throughout the valley have participated in the many performances under the temporary facility, also in Willits. This new facility will give all of us an incredible opportunity to view and be part of this wonderful theater.

The building cost is approximately $6 million. It will be completed in the spring with an anticipated opening in June 2021, COVID-19 allowing. While I am personally not a fund raiser, I have learned that they will need approximately another $100,000 to complete the necessary finishes and equipment.

Considering the quality of this new facility and what it can bring to our lives in the near future, I am hoping that our community will help TACAW finish what promises to be the best in the valley in inspiring programming and community engagement ensuring that they can maximize all of the opportunities that The Contemporary offers.

Gino Rossetti


YouthZone grateful for partners

As 2020 wraps up, YouthZone continues to receive incredible support.

In November, Glenwood Springs Ford and Steve Nilsson invited YouthZone to join them in their Community Partnership campaign, which resulted in a $3,250 donation. We also earned $18,725 from those of you who graciously supported us on Colorado Gives Day. Later in December, Krista Klees hosted the Lucky Chances Luncheon where donations made to YouthZone were matched by Slifer, Smith and Frampton totaling $9,610.

In the face of such an unprecedented year, you have stepped up to give our community the services it needs to be healthy and supported. YouthZone continues to receive calls, letters, and drop-ins from individuals who still want to give back and help our youth move forward. It is humbling to be a part of a community that has the motivation to give even when there is so much uncertainty in our day–to-day lives.

YouthZone thanks you for your continued kindness and support this year. We will continue to offer life-changing services to the youth of our valley, and your gifts are what will keep us doing just that. We hope to see you — in person — in the coming year to celebrate the amazing community we are building together.

Many thanks and warmest regards this holiday season …

Carol S Wolff

Development director, YouthZone

Thrift Shop scholarship fundraising continues

Woo hoo, good news! We are thrilled to report a generous response to our scholarship fundraiser efforts. Our work is not finished, though, and we will continue until our goal is met. We are determined to have the ability to grant scholarships this spring to deserving Roaring Fork Valley seniors. Please think of the Aspen Thrift Shop Scholarship Fund when you consider holiday gifting. Every dollar makes a positive impact.

Colorado Gives is a simple option to make a donation: Coloradogives.org/thriftscholarships

Checks may be mailed to: Aspen Thrift Shop, PO Box 126, Aspen CO 81612

No amount is too small and no matter how you choose to donate, you will receive a “thank you” with a donation receipt and tax ID number.

With gratitude …


Aspen Thrift Shop

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