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Letters to the editor

Rondi Berge

Wal-Mart, Home Depot, Pier One, Gart Sports, Office Depot, Costco, Mervyn’s, Foley’s, Best Buy, Kohl’s, etc.The above mentioned retailers have one thing in common – BIG BOX!I am so frustrated. I was working at home on my laptop the other night around 11p.m. because there are not enough hours in the day to do all the work that I need to do from owning a small business here in the valley. I am not complaining, because I enjoy being a small-business owner. I am frustrated because I was listening to the TV while working and was discouraged by the ad from Wal-Mart saying how great they are because they are revitalizing all of these small communities, creating jobs, offering great products at low prices, etc. Well, Wal-Mart and its developers are doing nothing to assist me with my business. Which is also true of all the big box stores. In my opinion, the Eagle Valley does not need any more of these big box stores to assist in the revitalization process of our county. Eagle County is revitalizing itself on its own because of the ski industry and by, more importantly, the people who live here and care about this valley. We do not need the influx of the big box industry to ruin our way of life and our quality of life. Why do so many people come to visit the Vail Valley? Well, besides the skiing, I know for a fact that it is to get away from things like stoplights, crime, traffic, and basically the chaos which exists in many of our cities. The charm that the town of Vail has possessed for so long is due to the fact that there is no Gap Store, no Chanel Store, no Gucci Store, no Banana Republic, etc., but rather specialty stores that are exclusive to Vail and the Eagle Valley. Also, in recent years many new businesses have opened in Minturn, Eagle-Vail, Avon, Beaver Creek, Edwards, Wolcott, Eagle and Gypsum that have offered charm and better customer service than any of the big box stores will ever offer.Make no mistake, what is currently happening in the town of Eagle will affect all of the well-established older businesses, as well as many of the newly-opened businesses throughout the valley.Well, for those of you who have not been following the local news, I have an important news flash. There are rumors that a bigger bix box than Wal-Mart is opening in Eagle County in the very near future. It is also rumored that this so-called member store is close to finalizing their location.Do not get me wrong, I think friendly competition is healthy. But do the business owners up and down the valley (Vail to Gypsum, even Dotsero) really believe that this type of business will not affect them?With all of the vacant commercial spaces from East Vail to Gypsum, I do not know how anyone can justify, especially any elected board members, the right to allow another big box store to be opened in our valley, specifically, at the relatively unaffected entrance to the town of Eagle. Has it occurred to the possible future developers who do not live or operate a business in the town of Eagle that they are infringing on the rights of many of your previous neighbors from Vail? I can vouch for many locals who originally moved to Vail but due to the soaring rental and real estate prices, chose to move downvalley to continue to enjoy their desired quality of life. Most of these people moved to Eagle or Gypsum thinking that there would never be the possibility that any of the following would also choose to move there: Kohl’s (I have never shopped there), Mervyn’s (I rarely have shopped there), Costco (I am a member, BUT DO NOT WANT IN MY BACK YARD), Sam’s Club (We have Wal-Mart), Foley’s (rarely shop there), etc.In all honesty, I have been in the retail industry for 25 years and I will admit that Target is my favorite big box store. Yet I still do not want it in my back yard.I do, however, try to shop at many of the small retailers in our valley. And I like to frequent many of our restaurants, not only to support our local businesses, but also because they have something different to offer than any large chain across the country.If you agree with me on the things that I have written about, please let the Eagle Town Board know very soon. They may be voting on it very soon and we need to implore them not make a huge mistake.Rondi BergeEagleNot enoughMy name is Erica Ring and I am a senior at Battle Mountain High School, and as a student currently attending the high school I would like to express my displeasure in the Daily’s failure to print a satisfactory amount of articles on the successes within the school. As the entire valley is aware there has been some very bad publicity for the school with the recent case against the alleged rapist. It is because of the excessive coverage of this case and the limited amount of reported news on positive aspects of the school that some students may not be returning next year, and other prospective students are reconsidering their enrollment within the school. I believe that the Daily owes it to the community to be supportive of all the local school and could help to shine some light on the positive qualities of the school. For example, I was very disappointed to see that when the Air Force Band came to the valley the paper only reported the band’s attendance at Eagle Valley High School. This would have been an excellent opportunity for the paper to report that they had also come to Battle Mountain to perform clinics and hold performances for us. However, all that appeared was a two-page article about the band’s attendance at Eagle Valley. Something else that would have been nice to mention was that at the ceremony for Freedom Park a student from Battle Mountain had the great opportunity to sing the national anthem with them.Other achievements within the school would include the success of a student’s movie at the Vail Film Festival, the tremendous improvement of the girl’s golf team, the ability of our school to come together in times of great sadness and support one another through tragedy. We have an overabundance of highly intelligent individuals, sophomores who are excelling in AP classes and seniors who are attending schools like Princeton, Pepperdine, Boston University, some who had been recruited by the school and others that received full scholarships to the college/university.It is unfortunate that instead of reporting such wonderful news as this, the paper feels that the page space would be better used for printing page-long articles about the alleged rapist, with front-page headlines reading “Rapist at Battle Mountain High School.” I hope that in the future we see more headlines praising the school rather than taking away from its glory. People forget that we had an unbeatable hockey team that made it to the final rounds of states and finished second because they remember instead the articles about the heightened threat of sexual assault. An article that would be worth mentioning is the concert that the Battle Mountain High School Band hosted at the Vilar Center with Berry Creek Middle School on May 3, and Battle Mountain High School’s home concert in the high school’s auditorium May 10, which is free to the public, or give more publicity to the Battle Mountain Student Art Exhibit at the Avon Library.Battle Mountain is a terrific school and I am not alone in wanting the Vail Daily to start reporting more of what makes the school great rather than news about the school’s downfalls.Erica RingAvonGreat jobI wanted to thank the Vail Daily and Shannon Armstrong for doing such a great job on the article recently published in the Vail Daily on Linda Hill & Hill & Company. I have been very fortunate to live and work in the Vail Valley since 1976 and am even more fortunate to have one of the greatest teams lending themselves to the success of our Agency. As a result I want to thank them for the leadership they have provided to our agency over the years. So Tim Campbell, Shelly Kunkel, Anna Maria Arizzi, Becky Levi Cohen, Lisa Aguilar, Debbie Feldhaus, John Pankey, Mike Adams and Louise Funk – thanks for making us one of the best marketing and advertising agencies in Colorado.Linda HillEdwardsVail, Colorado


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