Roses and Thorns |

Roses and Thorns

A rose for Friends of the Aspen Animal Shelter and Danny Phillips, Krabloonik’s new director of operations, for working together to reduce the number of dogs and excess breeding at the kennel. While it doesn’t resolve the question of whether owner Dan MacEachen is guilty of animal cruelty nor address all of the concerns the public has with operations there, it is a step in the right direction. Two-hundred-fifty dogs seems far more than necessary to run daily sled rides and above and beyond what any small staff can hope to care for.

Thorns to Pitkin County for its plan to use 5⁄8-inch gravel on Upper Frying Pan Road as part of a chip seal project. Yes, the county gets credit for scaling back the use of the big gravel. It initially planned to use the bigger chunks on 12 miles but will create a smoother surface on six miles. However, the last six miles of the road will be rough for at least a year, until weather and traffic wears it down. The route to the end of the pavement on Frying Pan Road is one of the classic rides in the Roaring Fork Valley. It’s ridiculous that Pitkin County, which is working with Aspen to promote the area as a cycling hub, won’t go to the extra expense of using smaller gravel on the entire route for its chip-seal project.

A rose to the USA Pro Challenge racing committee for choosing the second day race route to include both Basalt and Carbondale. Sharing the excitement throughout the valley is a smart move and gives both towns a chance to enjoy the race in their own communities.

Roses to all of the performers as well as their teacher, for this past weekend’s spring recital by Aspen Dance Progressions. The dancers were lively, spirited and entertaining, bringing thunderous applauses from the crowd for two hours. Great job, everybody.

A whole bouquet of thorns — in a empty Schlitz can for a vase — to the bro’ from Redneck Nation that felt an urge to yell at a road biker at the intersection of Willits Lane and Hooks Lane on Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. The cyclist was using the bike path alongside Willits Lane. Basalt spent a few thousand dollars a few years ago to make a pedestrian/bike crossing at the intersection, and it placed stop signs on Willits and Hooks to halt traffic and give bikes and walkers the right-of-way. There are no stop signs on the trail at the intersection, but a burly dude with a bushy beard and a big black pickup took exception to a cyclist rolling through the intersection on the bike path, as it is designed. The extra 15 seconds he had to remain at a stop apparently jeopardized his ability to get home in time to watch the latest episode of “Duck Dynasty.”

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