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Letters to the Editor

Compiled by Daily staff

Proud as can beIt is hard to express the joy and pride that I have felt since Toby won the bronze medal in the 2006 Torino Olympics. Just as touching has been the warm outpouring of affection, pride and excitement from you, the residents of this great place we call home. It means so much to our family that so many of you have shared and expressed the thrill of his Olympic dream come true. Not only am I proud of my son, but extremely proud to call all of you neighbors and friends. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Deborah DawsonVail Spring skiingWhen I was teaching 40 years ago, Vail spring skiing was a big thing. In those days, every day at noon the Back Bowls got roped up and every morning we enjoyed the untracked snow fields in the Back Bowls. Now it is tracked up because some stupid guys run down there in the afternoon when its soft and slushy. Just ask Mayor Rod Slifer, who was in those days the assistant ski school director. Rod, did you forget how it was? Wouldn’t it help your town to compete against other resorts? Wasn’t skiing the big thing what earned the money for everybody here? But then snow and skiing got replaced by the condos, and now spring skiing seems to be forgotten.Wouldn’t it be great to close at least Sun Down Bowl at noontime again so we could have the untracked corn snow there like it used to be?Its simply not true that spring skiing is only knee deep slush or hard frozen snow. Good timing is important. Being at the wrong place at the wrong time is disappointing, but hitting the right spot in time is a highlight of your skiing experience.When you go after a sunny day and a cold night up there at 9 o clock because you want to be the first on the mountain, you better have sharp edges and a good look at the grooming report. The snow will be hard frozen in “racing condition,” and even your teeth may start to rattle when you go over all the ruts in the ground.At such days I look out of the window and try to figure out what temperatures may be around. Let all of those go first who can’t wait. At about 10 to 11, I will be at Golden Peak. After 11, the “Slot” in Sun Up Bowl will be softened up because it is a southeast side gully. The “Slot” is simply some of the best corn snow runs we have and it almost works every day. Nice spring snow is like the butter on a bred. It is about 1 inch of nice melted snow on hard underground. Almost everybody starts to show a happy smile when they get the feeling of how beautiful it turns and how smooth it runs.Wind , clouds, sun and the weather of the day before will change the conditions.Friends went corn snow skiing with me and enjoyed it so much. Then they went to the same places the next day, and it was horrible.See,that is spring skiing. …What I have learned in the many years of skiing is that you don’t become a skier when you don’t learn that skiing is not only a workout. Relax and enjoy! Real skiing is a lifestyle. It includes nature, sport and fun. And spring is the best time to experience that.Otto Wiest Rodeo in AvonKudos to Avon’s Traer Creek, the Village at Avon and our friends at the Beaver Creek Resort Company, for making it possible to keep the Beaver Creek Rodeo in Avon this summer. Last summer’s site for the rodeo will be under construction with Avon’s Confluence this summer. The management teams at Avon’s Outback and Fiesta Jalisco are excited to have the rodeo right outside their business, just east of Avon’s Chapel Square this summer. Traer Creek has made their land available for the rodeo this summer with plenty of free public parking. The environmentally aware among us can also look forward to the opening of the new Traer Creek Plaza building, just west of the Wal-Mart, this spring, as it will be the first LEED compliant building in Eagle County. The Traer Creek Plaza building is totally paid for and completed 100 percent in the private sector, without the need for any Eagle County “Eco-Build” legislation. Are you paying attention, Commissioners Arn Menconi and Peter Runyon? And one more thing, for those who are following the nation’s immigration debate, the guy who 100 percent paid for that LEED building is from Sweden. Pete BuckleyAvonRound and aroundI am writing to plead with the town of Vail to educate all of us on how to use our roundabouts correctly. I remember the days of the four-way stop and have always been a big fan of the roundabouts. The problem is that there seem to be two distinct (and conflicting) theories on how to drive through them. I am of the opinion that in a two-lane roundabout, the car on the outside lane should always take the next exit, and use the turn signal in doing so. If you don’t plan to exit, you stay in the left lane. However, many other locals apparently believe that it is OK to start out in the right lane and then stay in that lane as they proceed to the second or third exit. This prohibits those in the left lane from getting to their exit. To me this is just as illogical as taking a left-hand turn at a stoplight from the right-hand lane. The worst spot in Vail is the traffic circle on the north side of the highway in West Vail. Many cars will queue up in the left lane, heading west, to get onto I-70 west. Then someone will see the right lane open and cruise through and around that outside lane past two other exits to the I-70 ramp, passing the cars on the left and blocking their way to the ramp. Road rage can ensue! Not to mention accidents. I have heard people say that the roundabouts are really just one-laners. But there are two-lane entrances at each of them, so somethings got to give. I think we should take a lesson from Avon and paint arrows on the road to indicate which lane should go where. Please try to get the word out and let us know how to drive in these things! Thank you and enjoy the spring!Chip BartschFaith vs. factThe War on Terror is being waged against the wrong enemy. Despite the piousness and pomposity of the leaders of all the world’s religions (and the unquestioning sheep that follow their edicts), organized religion has arguably always been the cause of a substantial amount of human suffering worldwide, and should be the real target in our collective efforts to bring peace and sanity to our very troubled planet.From the Byzantine-Muslim war of 645 to the present-day conflicts in the Middle East, religion has played a powerful and critical role in many wars throughout history and has led to untold suffering. All the world’s great religions claim to have a direct link to the one and only true deity, and to date hundreds of millions of human being have been brutalized, tortured, sacrificed and killed for holding one religious belief over another. “My god is better than your god, and death to the non-believers (those who think differently)” is a familiar refrain heard around the world. Aside from some reasonably good ecclesiastical music and numerous grand edifices of varying shapes and forms around the world, in my view religion has done far more harm to the human condition and the planet than good. It is past time to move on. Fossil remains recently discovered in Ethiopia dating back millions of years have provided the last link in the evolution of humankind, thereby confirming that human beings walking the planet today are creatures that evolved over the ages and were not created by some deity less than 10,000 years ago. We are not in Kansas anymore. Further, the unraveling of the human genome gives incontrovertible proof that genetically we all can trace our bloodlines back to a handful of ancestors who lived in Africa many millions of years ago. So much for the myth of creation, and three cheers for Charles Darwin. Here is the reality: Planet Earth may be likened to a tiny, leaking lifeboat vastly overloaded (overpopulated), alone and adrift on a vast, storm-tossed ocean (the universe) that is not watched over by any coast guard. Therefore we all would be well-advised to stop praying (counter-productive) to warring rival deities that simply do not exist. And rather than fighting one another over mythical interpretations of the origin of species, work together to fix the leaks and start bailing with all devices at hand. Our very survival as a species depends on the majority of the world’s population finally comprehending the vast differences between faith and fact and acting accordingly. Peter BerghEdwardsThe No Change DinosaursThe Friends of Vail Village moniker – the group that’s opposed the redevelopment of Crossroads – could just as easily be the Who’s Who of the Old And In The Way Club, The Affluent Geriatrics of Vail Commission, The No Change Dinosaurs. That’s what their half page ad reads like. This bunch is so old, they’re still dreaming in black and white; we’re talking old. …This has gone on way too long. This bunch has offered no money (and collectively they could) to come up with any other solutions to redeveloping Crossroads, no new ideas, nothing constructive at all to solve the problem for Vail that this developer is trying to solve. Peter Knobel is the only person who’s taken a run at Crossroads who can actually make it happen when others have tried and failed in the past. I think they’re scared that the establishment is losing its influence. Some of them will lose their views. Others might still be afraid of sharing The Big Landlord Table with someone new. They self-marginalize with this kind of obstructionist maneuver. They’re small group of very loud whiners. The only thing this bunch has produced for Vail lately is letters to the editors and referenda to stop Vail’s progress. We already had our municipal vote on this issue last fall. It passed.If they’re so concerned with bettering Vail, ask them why they’re against the enormous sales tax revenue this project is expected to generate for the town. They don’t care about a movie theater in town because they don’t go to movies; they go to bed. … I’m guessing that they’d be fine with my wife and I moving down to Eagle, which is what were thinking of doing anyway when my next kid is born in September.The other point they don’t talk about is that the height of the new building will actually block the view of, and more importantly, the noise from I-70. Remember, the location has nothing to do with “the village core.” Crossroads, as most of us know, is way over there. It’s at the back of the stadium, so to speak.Don’t sign their petition. They’re misrepresenting what Peter Knobel is doing.Ross OttoVailVail, Colorado


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