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Letters to the Editor

PioneersWhen an era ends it’s a time of mixed emotions – sad for our loss and happy for the future. Recently the Daily featured a piece about Liz and Luc Meyer on their retirement from The Left Bank Restaurant. More needs to be said about this pioneering couple, and Vail should offer them a great thanks for all their efforts.Not only did they produce one of Vail’s landmark “must visit” restaurants, but they invested back into the community and helped Vail grow and prosper in so many ways. And talk about success! Before the plethora of fine restaurants established themselves in the Vail Valley, The Left Bank was regularly booked out six weeks in advance and they received about 200 phone calls a day from people trying to get in – and that’s with two sittings a night in a 90 seat room.Luc was one of the first chefs in Vail to demand fresher and more creative ingredients for The Left Bank, which in turn persuaded suppliers to start offering better produce, fresh unfrozen seafood, herbs, and meats to Vail restaurants. Most of our very modern and creative restaurants in the Vail Valley today should thank Luc for paving the way in those early days.Liz and Luc also reinvested their success from The Left Bank back into other restaurants in Vail and allowed more chef’s the opportunity to make their mark in this valley. It would surprise many to learn how many restaurants Liz and Luc own and rent to other chefs.I have heard some people say that Liz and Luc were simply at the right place at the right time when they first came to Vail. But so were so many others, and while some succeeded, most did not and moved on. It is the likes of Liz and Luc Meyer, who came to Vail, recognized the potential, worked their butt off creating success and then reinvested that success back into the valley along with raising a family here, that Vail owes a huge debt – most of which the public simply does not know of, nor understand.I certainly believe that their successors at The Left Bank will continue to uphold the fine tradition and quality that was a trademark of Liz and Luc Meyer’s, but there is no doubt they Liz and Luc will be sorely missed but this community. I for one want to extend them all our thanks for what they have done in the past and wish them everything they hope for in the future.Howard Davis Vail This can be doneI applaud Jim Lamont and the Vail Village Homeowners Association for their efforts concerning the deleterious effects of I-70 on our community. The time has come to promote the elimination of I-70 through Vail. In discussing with my fellow residents a bypass tunnel or a cut and cover program, I have always evoked a positive and often enthusiastic reaction. However, the reply often is, “Where will the money come from?” or “I’ll not see it during my lifetime.”Let’s come together, including Vail residents, homeowners, businesses, the town of Vail, Vail Resorts, and all interested parties, and start the process to eliminate I-70 through Vail.Dr. Fred DistelhorstVailDrive lessI just heard the most outrageous thing on NPR news this morning. Chevron’s first-quarter profits – PROFITS mind you – are up 49 percent! I’ve recently heard similar reports for Exxon and other oil companies. This just proves that the constant increase in gas and fuel prices has nothing to do with Saudi Arabia or the war in the Middle East, as big oil would have us believe. It is caused by the greed of the oil companies, and an government administration planted firmly in their back pockets. There’s only one way to bring gas prices back down, and it has nothing to do with drilling in ANWR. It is simple. Quit using their gas. As long as we suck it up and keep paying the price they set, they’ll keep raising prices and laughing all the way to the bank. It is up to us, the consumers, to reduce our consumption of oil and prove that we WILL NOT put up with them charging as much as they want. Car pool, take the bus, ride a bike, walk. No, we can’t stop using gas altogether, but if we prove we aren’t going to keep using as much if they keep raising prices, they’ll be forced to lower them. And hey, it’s good for the environment, and maybe you’ll get to know your neighbors better! Come on people, get real and realize we don’t have to take our cars everywhere we go. It’s just not practical anymore, and makes us slaves to the oil companies. Cheryl Bottomley Gypsum Highway cleanupThe Eagle River Watershed Council highway cleanup was a wonderful success. Thanks so much for the sponsors that made this happen. Great to see so many people taking pride in the appearance of our roadways. We would like to thank these guys and gals who helped us in the Wolcott-Eagle Highway 6 cleanup: Ted Tannis, Kevin and Marla Ingham,Alex Spaeth, Ben Krueger and family, John and Vicky Garnsey, Rob and Cindy Crawford and their great group, Sue Hasbrook and clan, Joe and Mary Blair, Jean Nauman, Nancy Rivers, CarolAnn McNeil, Bruce Carey, Brenda Harper, Linda Williams, Melanie Lang, Donna Fitts, Janet Daniels, Jan Jouflas and crew, and there were more, but we didn’t get their names recorded … oops. This group is concerned about our environment and hope that more of you will be concerned and participate next year. Those of you who throw trash out your car windows … PLEASE TAKE IT HOME AND PUT IT IN YOUR OWN TRASH, NOT ON THE HIGHWAYS. Many thanks to the Eagle River Watershed Council for promoting this community clean up. We’ll be looking forward to the Eagle River clean up in September. Dave and Sue Mott Wolcott Hand for Afghanistan I wanted to thank the Avon and Vail police departments and the Beaver Creek lost and found for assisting the Afghanistan people in their plight. I requested any unclaimed, single gloves. The response has been outstanding. Unmatched gloves in the U.S. would not necessarily be warmly received. However, in a country destabilized by 500 years of conquest, gloves of any kind, unmatched or otherwise, are welcomed. Also, after 150 years of land mines, one glove is all many need.Shukran (thank you); these glosves will be sent this fall before the cold sets in.Roy Addington AvonAs a county commissioner candidate one of my big concerns has been the cost and wastefulness of heating sidewalks, driveways, patios, etc. with fossil fuel-based systems to melt the snow off. Then I began to look into geothermal heat for this purpose.I built a semi-underground house in 1978, so I know from personal experience that when you go underground below the frost line, the ground temperature is between 50 and 55 degrees. This means that in the winter I only have to raise the temperature in my house 20 to 30 degrees to be comfortable, and in the summer the cool walls reduce the heat so I don’t need air conditioning.Now companies are installing pipes in the ground and circulating the air to provide 50 degree heat for various uses. This is a perfect solution for the heated sidewalks in Vail but expensive to install- lots of drilling and retrofitting.Then it occurred to me that the Gilman mine has miles and miles of mine shafts deep underground, some that run almost over to Vail, I’m told. Talk about geothermal heat! If the air in those shafts could be tapped into and circulated in pipes to towns like “Ginnturn,” Minturn, Red Cliff, and maybe even Vail, if the shafts are close enough, the heat could keep their sidewalks, and even roads, clear of snow through our tough winters at a relatively low cost. And the heat is virtually inexhaustible.Shouldn’t we explore this possibility?Roger BrownGypsumEducational valuesDavid Le Vine expressed concern about mediocrity in U.S. education levels. He pointed out that education is not a high priority issue among many Hispanics and blacks. Some will brand this as racism, no matter how true it is. It is also true that for many whites, their priority of education is disappointing. Not as bad as other groups maybe, but still disappointing. Le Vine went off on the wrong track when he proposed solutions. He said it’s something for government and corporations to address. He spoke of spending a lot more money. Even though it’s pretty clear that past a certain point, more funding does not produce improved education. We can build new palaces of education, fill them with expensive gadgets and staff them with the best and the brightest. But if the students show up (when they show up) with a bad attitude, it will just be a waste of resources. Le Vine should go back to his original point. It’s a cultural problem. That is where the solution lies. People have to get a better attitude about learning. Which means downgrading other cultural values, like: being cool, constant entertainment, victimhood and contempt for traditional standards. What would this cost? Who should promote it?Terry QuinnEagleVail, Colorado


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