Vail Valley fundraiser planned for Hickenlooper |

Vail Valley fundraiser planned for Hickenlooper

Sarah Mausolf
Vail, CO Colorado

VAIL VALLEY – Most people in Colorado’s Vail Valley know John Hickenlooper as Denver’s mayor.

To Kelly and Jim Brinkerhoff of Edwards, he’s a longtime friend.

The Brinkerhoffs plan a fundraiser Thursday at their Edwards home to raise money for Hickenlooper’s run for governor.

“We supported him through his mayoral campaign,” Kelly Brinkerhoff said. “Now that he’s running for governor, we thought we’d help him out.”

Hickenlooper announced his gubernatorial bid in January. Kelly Brinkerhoff said she hopes to raise $10,000 for his campaign. During the event, Hickenlooper will meet with locals and explain what he hopes to accomplish as governor, Kelly Brinkerhoff said.

The Brinkerhoffs became friends with Hickenlooper before he got into politics, Kelly Brinkerhoff said.

As longtime friends, they have some inside dirt on the candidate – like the fact that he’s good at squash. Kelly Brinkerhoff said her husband met Hickenlooper at a squash club in Denver. The Brinkerhoffs also frequented Hickenlooper’s brew pub, Wynkoop Brewing Co., when they lived in Denver.

Now, the local couple hopes to give their friend’s campaign a financial boost.

“We just supported John for a long time,” Kelly Brinkerhoff said. “We think he’s an extremely gifted leader in the political realm.”

Hickenlooper is the only remaining Democratic candidate for November’s governor’s race. The Secretary of State’s office lists more than a dozen other candidates for the office, though Hickenlooper’s likely challenger will be former Republican Congressman Scott McInnis.

Voters elected Hickenlooper as Denver’s mayor in 2003. As governor, his No. 1 priority would be to create jobs, campaign spokesman George Merritt said.

“As mayor, John used his experience as a small businessman and brew pub owner to convince businesses to come to Colorado, and he is convinced that as governor, the best way to get our economy going is to continue to market Colorado as a great place to visit and do business,” Merritt said.

Staff Writer Sarah Mausolf can be reached at 970-748-2928 or

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