Town meeting for a handful |

Town meeting for a handful

Don Rogers

The main ballroom of the Vail Marriott had seats set up for two to three times the number of citizens who showed up for a “town hall” meeting on the state of Vail Resorts.

Maybe folks didn’t remember when the session was scheduled, with the first announcement coming weeks ago. It made the calendar, but didn’t seem to quite merit a big preview story or large advertisements.

If folks were as worked up as letter writers, Tipsline callers and that handful of wise eggs like to suggest, you’d think they would have leaped at the chance to ask the ski company’s top leaders anything they wanted.

Subtract company officials, local politicians and advocates, and a few stray members of the press and we counted maybe six people genuinely from the public.

Still, kudos to the ski company for having such a meeting and taking the time to explain their plans and showing some of their research to the masses, even if the public didn’t show up in great numbers.

For the ski company, this is a big year. Much rides on Vail Resorts having a strong snow season and returning to profitability.

Company leaders sounded bullish about their chances. The early signs look promising for lodging, out of state visitors, the hotels (Ryan and Trista’s wedding helped Rancho Mirage), real estate and of course early snow getting folks on the hill regularly before Christmas.

The national economy looks good, and this year there’s no frightening drum roll toward war. Pray that terrorism is kept at bay.

The ripple effects of a successful year for the “gorilla,” needless to say, will buoy the entire county. There’s a cautious optimism that after these past few lean and worrisome years, the Vail Valley is due for a thriving one.

If the outlook were more dour, maybe the opportunity to cast stones at the “empire” along with questions would have been too great to pass up. Human nature is such that there needs to be more anger to attract a crowd to such presentations, apparently.

Need coupon

In case there’s a question, for that free parking in Vail structures for visitors from the Front Range taking advantage of “Vail Loves You,” the VR and town chamber promotion, motorists need a coupon mailed to Front Range pass holders to take advantage of the opportunity.

Interesting that all the great gnashing of teeth over Front Rangers skiing on discounted passes and filling the Frontage Road has come to this. Nice the chamber is aboard.