Roses and Thorns: Take down those campaign signs, it’s ski season already

Staff report

• A rose goes to the city of Aspen’s engineering department, specifically city engineer Trish Aragon and senior project manager, Pete Rice, for their dogged determination in providing information to the public about the months-long Castle Creek Bridge/Hallam Street corridor project. Those two have taken a beating from the public since the spring about construction happening at the entrance to Aspen. We’re glad, as they are, for the project to be complete. Thanks for having a sense of humor and getting that beast done.

• Thorns to the political candidates and issue backers in the Nov. 6 election who haven’t taken down their yard signs yet.

We think the signs have questionable value, but that’s not the point here. The signs are visual pollution, pure and simple. And often times they are polluting public right-of-ways.

Get them taken care of, candidates and issue backers, before we start naming names. • A bundle of thorns should be delivered to robo callers representing a company called “Support First.” They are inundating people in the valley with their ridiculous marketing calls selling whatever they can, whether it’s hearing aides or energy efficiency upgrades for your home. If you get a call from 970-463-3070 out of Julesburg, Colorado, don’t answer it! Or do answer it, and tell them to stick it where the sun doesn’t shine.

• A repeat bouquet of roses to Basalt resident Laura Riegel. She earned roses in this column in July when she organized an impromptu “thanks” to the federal firefighters who flooded the midvalley to snuff the Lake Christine Fire as it burned on national forest. The event was a wild and emotional success that attracted several hundred people to Crown Mountain Parks on a day’s notice.

Unfortunately, bad things sometimes happen to good people. Laura is facing a medical issue. Godspeed in recovery, Laura, and here’s a proverbial rose in the meantime.

• Thorns to those bus riders who think it’s OK to carry on a full-blown conversation with the driver while the bus is in motion. It happens more often that you’d think.

We’re proud to live in a community where we see friends around town and in different places. But when the friend is driving a 25,000-pound machine and has the souls of other people in their control, let’s let them focus on the road and not on the band you saw last week.

Recently, we saw a rider actually pull out his phone and show a picture to the driver, while the bus was driving 40 mph. Seriously.

• And finally, a bouquet of two dozen roses for all the mountain crews involved in getting Aspen Mountain open this weekend. Sure it’s only five days early, but it’s nice having something on the radar. And Snowmass is looking great as well. Nice work.

Have a rose or a thorn? Send them to (with Roses & Thorns in the subject line). We collect and publish a fresh bouquet every couple of Fridays.


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