Snowmass Town Briefs: Accepting council and mayor candidates; water line replacement on Meadow Road; shift in events; new pedestrian improvements on Owl Creek; S’mass ranked No. 6 safest small town in the state; resident sets golf course record

Staff report


On Aug. 4, the town of Snowmass Village began accepting nomination petitions for the two Town Council seats and position of Mayor that will be up for re-election this November.

Both Councilman Tom Goode’s and Councilwoman Alyssa Shenk’s seats are on the ballot this year, as well as Mayor Markey Butler’s position. Butler has served three consecutive, two-year terms and is at the term limit for mayor, meaning she cannot run again. Goode has served one, four-year term on Town Council and Shenk has served 1.5 terms, taking over Butler’s council seat in the middle of her term when she was elected mayor. Both can run for re-election.

As of Aug. 4, Goode said he plans to run again for Town Council and Shenk said she was undecided.

To run for one of these open positions, candidates must be at least 18 years old, a citizen of the United States and have lived at least 12 consecutive months as a resident of Snowmass Village.

For more information on what you need to do to submit a nomination petition, visit

Submissions will be accepted through Aug. 24. The general and municipal election will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 3, coordinated by Pitkin County.


The Snowmass Water and Sanitation district began a water line replacement project on Meadow Road Aug. 3.

The project is not related to the water line replacement on Brush Creek Road and is expected to take 8 to 10 weeks to complete. Water and sanitation district officials said drivers should expect some traffic delays and disruption during this time.


Late last week, Snowmass Tourism announced both the second Ice Cream Anti-Social of the summer planned for Labor Day and the cancellation of the Snowmass Drive-in Movies & Concert series.

Julie Hardman, special events manager for Snowmass Tourism, said the decision to cancel the rest of the Snowmass drive-ins was the result of a handful of factors.

The biggest was local turnout. Hardman said for the first two nights of the movie series, about 40 to 50 cars registered to attend but only 20 to 30 showed up.

And since Aspen Skiing Co.’s drive-in series seems off to a great start, Hardman said Snowmass Tourism decided to take the money it planned to use toward the drive-ins and refocus it in a different way to support the village.

She said tourism staff is talking with town stakeholders and business owners to see what they feel is most needed in the village right now and how Snowmass Tourism can help.

“Every new concept needs time to build momentum and interest, but it’s all so different this summer so we decided to circle back with our stakeholders and see how we can help,” Hardman said of canceling the drive-ins.

“We’re still in the idea phase, but we want to be efficient with our money and put it back toward the village’s needs.”

However, because the Fourth of July Ice Cream Anti-Social event — where town staff delivered ice cream treats via a festive truck throughout all of Snowmass — was such a success, Snowmass Tourism is bringing it back for Labor Day. More details on the truck route and schedule will be released closer to the holiday.

Other new changes to the Snowmass summer event schedule include the cancellations of the Snowmass Doubles Volleyball Tournament, Colorado Classic, CU in Snowmass mountain biking races and the Colorado High School Cycling League: The Snowmassive Chase.

For the most updated summer events calendar, visit


On Friday, town crews finished installing a new crosswalk at Gambel Way on Owl Creek Road, according to a town news release.

The crosswalk, which Town Council gave town staff direction to move forward with at its July 8 meeting, will facilitate safer crossings for pedestrians at the bus station and in the Little Red School House area, the release says.

By early October, town crews also plan to install rapid flash beacons near the Little Red School House at the trail crossing over Owl Creek Road, as well as a crosswalk and rapid flash beacons at the Fairway Drive crossing over Owl Creek Road near Two Creeks.

Anne Martens, public works director, said Snowmass Police, transportation and public works staff analyzed these Owl Creek Road crossings and decided all three would help improve multi-modal traffic flow and safety.

When presented to Town Council, the cost of the Owl Creek pedestrian improvements — which originally were presented to include two rapid flash beacons and an additional crosswalk — was estimated at $25,000. Martens said that cost is expected to increase with the agreed addition of three rapid flash beacons and two crosswalks, but should be covered by the town’s Road Maintenance Mill Levy Fund.

“This is a combination of increasing pedestrian safety and balancing multi-modal methods of transportation,” Martens said Aug. 3, referring to people traveling by vehicle, bike and foot in the Owl Creek Road area. “We need to all respect the fact that people in their vehicles have places to be, but pedestrians and bikers are using the roadways too, so drivers need to be patient and aware of their speeds.”


A new report from AdvisorSmith that uses FBI crime data to identify the safest cities and towns in Colorado ranked Snowmass Village as the sixth safest small town in the state.

AdvisorSmith is a New York-based, national information and business insurance resource that works to provide expert research to help businesses succeed, according to its website. The company’s “Safest Cities in Colorado” study, which was published on July 30 and based on 2018 FBI crime data (the data was released in Sept. 2019), scores the safety of each Colorado city and town, weighing different crimes such as theft, assault and robbery based upon their severity, a company news release states. Higher weights were assigned to more serious crimes such as murder and rape.

The study also breaks Colorado cities into three categories based on population sizes: large cities, which have more than 100,000 residents; midsize cities, which have 10,000 to 100,000 residents; and towns, which have less than 10,000 residents.

Snowmass Village and Aspen fell in the town category and compared against 81 other communities of similar size. The average crime score for this category was 48, while the median score was 34, according to the AdvisorSmith website.

Snowmass Village was the only Aspen area community to rank in the top 10, with a total crime score of 14.1. The village’s violent crime rate was zero per 1,000 residents and the property crime rate was 7.2 per 1,000 residents. Statewide, the average violent crime rate for small towns was 2.7 and the average property crime rate was 42.4, according to a study news release.

Aspen was ranked 60th, with a violent crime rate of 1.6 per 1,000 residents, a property crime rate of 38.8 per 1,000 residents and an overall crime score of 60.8.

Basalt ranked 13th in the AdvisorSmith study and Carbondale ranked 21st. For more information on the study, visit


On July 25, Snowmass local and business owner Johnny Henschel set the new Snowmass Club course record from the Blue Tees, shooting a Round of 63, according to club officials.

Henschel—who already had the course record—beat his previous best round by six shots. Some highlights of Henschel’s round included eight birdies, with six shot from Hole 8 to Hole 16, and an eagle on Hole 10. Snowmass Club officials said on Henschel’s last hole, many members and staff heard what was happening and went to watch him. He stuck the approach shot to less than three feet but missed a birdie putt for a 62.

Congrats, Mr. Henschel!