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Letters to the editor

Galen Aasland

I’ve used the Vail library from a time when it was in the basement of the municipal building through this week. I have yet to be treated even remotely in a rude or discourteous manner. In fact the librarians have been uniformly helpful and courteous throughout those 25 years. In the 1990s I had an office in Minturn, and at times I’d go to the Minturn Library for a break. I never considered asking for the privilege to take items home from there, as I was not a Minturn resident. I was grateful for a quiet place to read.I understand frustration with lack of access to library facilities. I’ve had occasion to need medical information from the medical library at the college I graduated from. As I am no longer a student it has taken hours to find ways to get a prepaid access card to be able to use the photocopy machines. The information was important to me. But I was aware I had to find a way to use their services within their system. I note, the college still wants and deserves my alumni dollars even though they made things difficult for meAs a Vail property owner, after public safety I believe the Vail Library offers the best use of any general fund budget dollars the town distributes. I would like the town to expand the services of the library. I expect the Vail Library should offer a desirable place for residents and guests from Colorado and all over the world to visit and use. However, I don’t believe the Vail Library can supply unrestricted check-out privileges to everyone from other communities that comes in. Our town has an excellent library, as do other communities. The librarians in Vail are hardworking people who don’t deserve mean verbal attacks for spite.Galen AaslandVail’Latest diatribe’I just finished reading Steve Pope’s latest diatribe on the Eaton Ranch project. Let’s forget that Steve and this paper came out in support for this project just six months ago, because apparently he has.Let’s forget that the Bair Ranch project which Steve compares the Eaton Ranch project to, was not an open space land purchase but a development rights purchase. It is not now, nor ever will be land owned by the county or the citizens who live here. We will not walk on it or live with it every day of our working lives. Let’s forget that land within the Vail Valley IS far more expensive than land located miles outside of the valley. Considering all the real estate ads the Daily runs, you would think they’ve learned one thing: location, location, location.Let’s forget that the property is currently a gravel pit but that parts of it have already been restored and that just this past summer cattle grazed on those “3 inches of dirt” and that hay was harvested from that “handful of grass seed.”Let’s forget that the entire Eaton Ranch parcel is easily developable land and as such would not be protected by law from such development.Let’s forget the sprawl of development that already exists from one end of the valley to the other.Let’s forget, as the Daily has time and again, the facts and let’s take a look at what we get from this deal. We get something that we can never replace and that we can never get again. We get something that we cannot make any more of. We get something that has more value than all of the condos and houses and businesses could ever provide. We get peace, and space and meadows next to a river bank. We get land that is expensive and valuable today, and will be so much more so in the future.Saving the pristine areas that surround us should be important to all of us. It was to our forefathers who had the vision to long ago protect national forest lands and wilderness areas. They protected these areas when nobody could have envisioned what was to come. Because of their vision we are surrounded by open space. And we should all work to maintain and protect those open spaces. But let’s not forget what Steve Pope has forgotten, that open space is invaluable in every part of our lives, not just around us where it’s the least expensive and the most abundant, but within our communities and our lives. It may cost more, but the dividends will be well worth it. Elizabeth Klaus Editor’s note: The paper did not come out in support of the Eagle County Board of Commissioners spending all of the open space fund and $2.2 million more from the general fund. Praise for taking an option should not be confused with agreement with the path ultimately taken. Nice jobI wanted to tell you what a breath of fresh air it was for me to read the commentary by Don Rogers in the Vail Daily as I was passing through Vail on my way home from Denver last week. I found his reporting approach interesting and thought-provoking in that he presents an open minded point of view in the column entitled “Here even enemies can be friends.” Coming from Telluride and having recently read some commentaries from the local Aspen paper where hatred toward anyone else of differing opinions seems prevalent, Mr. Rogers’ column presents balanced and informed reporting. When I read the newspaper, I am seeking to learn and to understand. For all intents and purposes I’ve quit reading the newspaper in Telluride because they are so out of touch with reality and they are simply upsetting. They have lost credibility in my mind because there is so much anger spewed out. Don Rogers puts it all in a true perspective with his last two paragraphs of that article. I do disagree with him on one point he made with the statement of “I’m fully aware that I’m just not that interesting.” I find your writing quite interesting and the Vail Daily has made my preferred reading list.Thank you for that breath of fresh air.Heather WhiteThanks, NateKudos to Nate Peterson’s writing in his “Trickle Down Effect” article of March 11. It actually filled me with awe at the knowledge, and ability to write about the feelings about the U.S. Ski Team, and the involvement with the Ski and Snowboard Club of Vail members.I first volunteered for Course Maintenance for the 1989 Alpine Ski Championships, and considered the experience to be the most thrilling thing that I have ever done as a recreational skier. Associating with Cindy Nelson and the following chiefs of race, for all of the following Ski Classics and World Cups through the inaugural of the Birds of Prey, the closeness to the racers and coaches, the race crews and race patrollers will always be the highest peak experience since I began skiing at 16 years old in 1952.The course maintenance crew had a hard core of 60 to 80 volunteers that repeated for the 10 years, centering on Chuck Malloy and Dick and Mary Pownall. This article is an award winner, in my opinion, and congratulations and thanks to Nate for stirring my memories and feelings of pride.Steve ZorichakVailVail, Colorado


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