A lonely bid to save a clock
VAIL – The Lionshead clock tower may remain in the hearts of skiers and snowboarders who’ve watched the minutes tick away as they waited for late friends to hit the hill. But to David Charles, a Loveland resident who spends a lot of time in Vail, the tower – slated to be demolished Tuesday – is the ideal symbol of Lionshead’s blocky, faux-Viennese architecture. “Obviously, the design is somewhat dated, but only by looking back on those things can we judge progress,” says Charles, who’s leading a one-man effort to preserve the clock’s wooden face and internal mechanisms. “My optimism is flagging at this late date,” Charles says, “but we still have a few glimmers of hope.” Charles is the founder and curator of the Loveland-based Colorado Computer Museum, a traveling exhibit that has no permanent building to show its collection to the public. As for the Lionshead tower, Charles not only needs to find the heavy equipment to take the clock down without destroying it, he needs some place to store the enormous timepiece. “When people think of the old Lionshead, that’s probably one of the images that will come to mind,” he says. But so far, no one – not the town or the Colorado Ski Museum or the Eagle County Historical Society – has offered to help. “I think Vail is young enough that it hasn’t developed a real, clear historical identity,” he says. “As a community gets older, people start looking back and recognizing the value of their history. It may not be for a while that people realize the clock should’ve been saved.”Vail, Colorado
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