ROSES AND THORNS | AspenTimes.com

ROSES AND THORNS

A rose: To the Aspen Youth Center, for providing a safe and fun place for our kids to hang out over these holiday weeks, when most of us local parents are working too much.

A few thorns: For those in charge of construction at the Aspen Business Center. Traffic's backed up, the streets are ugly and people are cranky. Not a very nice way to welcome people to Aspen over the holidays.

Thorns: To members of the Basalt Town Council, with the exception of Rick Stevens, for a hands-off approach to the prickly political problem some residents of the Pan and Fork Mobile Home Park have presented. Stevens was the only member of the council to attend a candlelight vigil held by a faction of residents of the trailer park Thursday evening. The event would have helped the decision-makers craft policy by listening to the stories of the people who live at the park and why they want to stay in Basalt. There's nothing wrong with learning about the people affected by policy.

A thorn: To Aspen Skiing Co. for taking its walk-up rate for lift tickets to an unprecedented $124. Yes, we know that the price is temporary. Yes, we know that discounts for multi-day packages are available to visitors. Yes, we know that the ability to ski any one of Skico's four mountains is a great option. Yes, we know that most local skiers and snowboarders have some type of pass that works out to big savings, far less than the $124 daily rate. But there's just something about charging the highest single-day rate in the company's history that reeks of bad policy. What's the point of it? Also, a thorn to the well-heeled consumers who are more than willing to pay the $124 fee, thereby justifying it in the minds of those who came up with the rate.

A rose: To the 9th Judicial District Attorney's Office for recent actions taken against the Krabloonik dog-sledding business in Snowmass Village. On Wednesday, D.A. Sherry Caloia filed eight misdemeanor counts of cruelty to animals against Krabloonik's owner, Dan MacEachen. Back on Dec. 12, the office served a search warrant at the business and confiscated eight dogs as part of its investigation. Arraignment has been set for Jan. 14 in Pitkin County Court. Defendants are innocent until proven guilty, but the fact that authorities are looking to take control of the this longtime controversy should be heralded as good news.