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Letters to the editor

John Ramunno

The Eagle Valley High School football Team enjoyed a tremendous season. There were so many people there for our players time and time again. We appreciate coaches Cliff Zehring, Eric Mandeville, Tom Kirk, Pat Gabriel and Ken Reagan for their time and endless energy. We thank Mark Strakbein, Dave Scott and Jeff Lueders, along with Robin and Brian from Steadman-Hawkins for their daily support. Thanks to the Greater Eagle Fire Protection District and Jon Jon Asper for hydrating our players. We appreciate the Gypsum Fire Department for all that they do. Thanks to Susan Shreeve and the Eagle Valley Booster Club for their support, Sally Whitehead, Laura Mansfield, Kim Winsor, Laurie Everman and Raenette Johnson for Ladies Night Out, Eagle Valley Medical Center for magnets, Alpine Laser Clinic for T-shirts and Raymond Winsor for caps. All of our parents were amazing and supportive. We will miss Jason Matheson and Bill Britt doing our stats, Barb and Sunshine Romersheuser filming our games, jersey-wearing, sign-making chefs/moms Deb Comerford, Janet Rivera, Laurie Slaughter, Mary-Kate Ewing, Gail Britt, Preni Matheson, Janelle Kottenstette, Deb Peters, Debbie Schwan, Lanette Mitchell and Consuelo Valdez. We will miss our supportive, helpful senior dads Will Comerford, Kevin Kottenstette, Maurice Mitchell, Bart Ewing, Joe Schwan and Gene Slaughter.We would also like to thank the Eagle Valley spirit teams (cheer and dance) for infusing the crowd with enthusiasm and Jen Wright and the cheerleaders for our locker decorations and senior night help. We appreciate those who put in time and energy behind the scenes like Ron and Debby Beard, Susan Best, Janine Kirk, Jordan Driver, Sarah Reusch, Laurie Asmussen and our dependable bus driver, Sue. We also want to thank Marilyn and Tony Ramunno for scouting reports and Rich Deane for weather reports.The team really appreciated the media coverage from John Knoff and everyone at KSKE radio, along with those businesses that supported those broadcasts; Chris Freud and Ian Cropp with the Vail Daily for their enthusiastic support; Shane Macomber from the Vail Daily for capturing amazing moments; and Steven Sekelik with the Eagle Valley Enterprise. Every game, our team played their hearts out, never gave up and were ONE HEARTBEAT. Thanks for the e-mails and calls of encouragement – our guys heard those and were touched. Our community support was unbelievable. Keep supporting Eagle Valley football and all of your Devil teams. What a team! What a community! Thanks so much.John RamunnoHead Football CoachEagle Valley High SchoolDon’t close!Where is the loyalty to our locals? Not everyone has the luxury of taking time off during the shoulder season (as every restaurant in Vail seems to have done). To those unfortunate few who have to work in Vail, I have one bit of advice: Bring a bag lunch! To the restaurateurs: May I suggest next year you stagger your closing dates so hard-working folk like me don’t go hungry? …Eric LyonVail Future in hiking?Coming back to Vail every winter is fun and home again. Then reading the Vail Daily means to learn about local problems. May I add something from an outsider to Beth Slifer’s letter about the conference center and the missing business for five months in summertime?Vail is a paradise for the locals. And as I read again and again, there is no better place on earth. After having seen a lot of other places, I would agree with that. Beth Slifer talks about the missing business in summertime. Five months without customers is a long time. But that means also five months when the Locals go kayaking, fishing, biking, golfing without being disturbed by tourists. Would you be willing to share your paradise with visitors who bring the money? Even in wintertime I get the impression that some of the locals would like to have the powder snow and the slopes for themselves. Real estate seems to be for Vail the ideal business. Selling empty homes to customers who are seldom here is a fantastic deal to keep the private atmosphere. I don’t have the knowledge to talk about a conference center. You, the locals, know it better. But if I come to Vail, I am always astonished how much I read about dining. How much can people eat till they get sick? Besides that, golfing seems to be the big thing. How much can you golf? And, what else can people do in summertime? Worldwide, neither golfing nor eating is the No. 1 activity. It’s simply walking and hiking. The nice new hotels which are built here will not get happy with snowboarders, bikers or runners. I remember last year when I was in a nice hotel with a wonderful location at a lake in Chile. The place was full of people who seemed to have the money to be there. In other words – generally over 40 years old. They offered them a lot of activities like windsurfing, kayaking, biking, rock climbing and so on. One of the guests asked finally why don’t they offer us hang gliding and flying a kite? (In Vail they might put up this question: Why do they offer us another halfpipe instead of giving us a place where we don’t get scared to death by the noise of a boarder who is passing close at 50 mph? )If you go to Norway, Switzerland, Austria, all over Europe, you find a perfect system of well-marked trails for walking and hiking. Short walks with benches Longer ones and extreme hikes. But all are well marked – where to go, how long it takes, and how difficult it will be. Vail has all of this. Mt. Holy Cross, Notch Mountain, Bald Mountain, Jacques Peak and a lot more. But who has ever been there? I was in Australia and Tasmania. Down there you find the same. You can do two- to 10-hour hikes and find wood bridges through wetlands and well-prepared trails at steeper hills. Even In Patagonia, around Fitz Roy or at Bariloche, there are wonderful places with an endless trail system for hikers. And believe it or not, you find a lot of Americans hiking there. Back home in Germany I live not far away from Oberstdorf. Go there in the summertime. The stores are full of people. It is difficult to find a place to stay overnight, and to get into a restaurant. The place is booming. If you are willing to share your Vail paradise with other people, it is not enough to expect that people walk up and down Bridge Street and go shopping. Even a walk from Vail Village to Lionshead is not very impressive. May I propose that some of the Vail officials ask Vail’s Johannes Fessler? They have an outstanding place in Ofterschwang, Germany, and they could explain better than me what I mean. And I am sure the Fessler family would be glad to show you how Vail in the summertime could grow and expand. But that would need more then only some locals who know where to go. It would also need the understanding of the environmentalists that the beautiful nature around Vail is not only for themselves, but also for the visitors who need some help to experience all of this. That would need a well-organized trail system with a responsible care-taking with benches, trail markers, tour leaders, and marketing. Let me finish with a typical comment. Today I told a local lady how wonderful it is to walk in the summertime up Bald Mountain and to look all over the Colorado peaks and down into Vail. She asked me where Bald Mountain is. I am quite sure that most of the locals have never been on this wonderful hill in their backyard. Years ago skiing came over from Europe, and to day the local ski resorts seem to be better then a lot of those in Europe. It might be that someday Vail will not complain anymore about the missing five months in summertime. If you try, you may have the visitors who enjoy the smell of the trees, the beauty of the flowers, the animals they may see, and the health they will get by coming to a summer resort that knows what to offer them. Otto WiestVailProud parentsWhen I arrived here more than 30 years ago, the area’s athletic reputation was based primarily on alpine activities. In the next two decades, golf put the Vail Valley on the sports radar as exceptional facilities opened, and the Jerry Ford Golf Invitational brought national exposure to the area. Another sport is starting to give the valley a reputation, if not on a national level, certainly statewide. I am writing this letter as a proud and avid volleyball dad. For the past eight years, I’ve watched my daughters Ashley and Aubrie and their teams play – and we’ve come a long way baby! Eight years ago, a local team was fortunate to win one game, let alone a match. This year teams from Vail Christian, Battle Mountain and Vail Mountain School have sent notice throughout Colorado for their outstanding play in recent district, regional and state high school championships. Our exceptional young female athletes are setting standards that should continue for years to come in both high school and club league play. Watching my daughters, their teammates, and other valley volleyball players is as a rewarding a spectator sport as I’ve experienced. The support of hundreds of local fans show by traveling for hours to cheer not only for their team but others from our area is a great source of valley pride. In a day and age in which sport’s stars’ and fan’s conduct is often reprehensible, it’s a refreshing change. On a personal note, I’m going to especially miss the five VMS seniors who have played their last game together after six years of competitive play. I’ll miss Miranda Farley’s 8 point service runs, Lara Green sprinting across the floor to make a great set, Cely Brinkman diving to the court for a spectacular dig, Linsay Wright hitting over girls 6 inches taller than she, and my darling daughter Aubrie’s blocks and unstoppable kills. From what I’ve seen, our local volleyball teams are in good hands with talented underclassman, excellent coaching, exceptional local coverage (thanks Vail Daily) and a devoted following. ‘Tis a privilege to live in the Vail Valley, especially during volleyball season. Thank you, girls.It was a great run. Tom AppleEdwardsDon’t like itJust I quick note to express amazement that the Daily now requires “reader registration” for access to its Web site. Why not just close down the Web site and be done with it?That said, of course I registered. I’m a sheep, and I want access to what I want when I want it. But my general Web surfing will be done at sites that still provide news and information with no strings attached. Angela Loupe Gypsum Vail, Colorado


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