Vail Daily editor’s view: Cycling into summer
Vail, CO, Colorado
The Brush Creek Saloon was coyote ugly last Saturday night.
I was hemmed in, amid a writhing sea of dancers, watching women dancing on the bar here, dancing on a counter there.
Outside, bicycles were parked everywhere.
What a night. What a glorious capper to Eagle’s first cruiser pub crawl.
The event taught me a couple of things:
n The 30- to 40-something crowd that dominated the participants knows how to have a lot of fun.
n There’s a cycling culture in our valley that can be tapped for more events like this one.
The new Eagle merchants group OneEagle put on the event, one among a stream that could yet make Eagle the western version of Eagle this summer.
This weekend it’s Boot Days, beginning this evening and running through Sunday mostly at and around the Dusty Boot in Eagle Ranch. The events include music, booths, a trail run and cycling activities — and a fly fishing clinic on Brush Creek just beyond the restaurant’s new patio.
Memorial Day weekend brings another new event, Eagle B Active, with a variety of sports contests. I’d suggest adding something to do with cycling if the organizers haven’t already done this.
One Eagle by far is the most active of the nascent business groups springing up in the rain of recession.
The traditional chambers are struggling, with mission as well as funding and membership. Only the Vail Valley Partnership looks fundamentally sound to me, and that’s come with a familiar cost in shrinking staff and finding their core purposes. Most businesses in our valley are running the same gantlet.
The right events will help each neighborhood’s business community, certainly. But those occasional spikes won’t likely be enough on their own to get the merchants through this downturn. The more fundamental services that the chambers can provide remain necessities even as the organizations are doubted, at least to a degree.
I still believe that the single best action governments can take to help the business community that feeds them is to find stable funding streams for their chambers. I’m hollering against a wind here, but that doesn’t make me wrong.
Meantime, I’m thoroughly enjoying my sunburn from pub crawling on a glorious sunny afternoon and evening in Eagle. Should be a fun summer with all this budding energy.
Don Rogers, firstname.lastname@example.org, is the editor and publisher of the Daily.
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