VAIL, Colo. - A prominent run on the face of Vail Mountain that was long called International now has a new name: Lindsey's, after Olympic gold-medal downhiller Lindsey Vonn. Vail Resorts, the ski area operator at Vail, announced the name change at a reception in Whistler, B.C. Although born in Burnsville, Minn., Vonn began trekking to Vail with her family after showing early signs of promise. She moved to Vail in the late 1990s to better be able to train. Obviously, it has paid off.
Bookings, income down
ASPEN, Colo. - Average occupancy at hotels, lodges and condos in Aspen during January was about 68 per cent - just 1.6 per cent less than the same month in 2009. But the average daily rate was down 6.4 per cent, reports Bill Tomcich, president of a local reservations agency called Stay Aspen Snowmass. Visitors are also presumably leaving fewer tips with bellhops and front-desk clerks. And the more tight-fisted spending patterns are having ripple effects across the board, including the coffers of local governments. "The occupancy report doesn't mean what it used to mean," said Hilary Fletcher, the Pitkin County manager, during a recent discussion of the county's financial outlook.
Job market decimated last year
ASPEN, Colo. - Statistics have now begun to define the recession in Aspen and Pitkin County, where roughly one in 10 jobs was lost between 2008 and 2009.
Citing Colorado Department of Labor and Employment figures, the Aspen Times reports that the number of jobs fell to 14,670 during the second quarter of last year, down 1,804 from the same period a year prior. Jobs were shed somewhat equally in the construction, retail and restaurant/bar categories. Tourist accommodations, however, stayed about the same.
Wages also fell, reports the newspaper. Retail sector workers lost $60 per week on average. Real-estate support staff lost more, $174 per week, but still earned more than retail workers. Construction workers, those who still had work, were earning the most to begin with and lost the least, just $16 per week.
Time to get rid of shag rug
DILLON, Colo. - The town of Dillon got moved in the late 1950s, to avoid getting covered by Dillon Reservoir. Located on a lovely hill since, it has nonetheless always seemed to lack something.
"It's missing a heart," Matt Lit, a gallery owner, told the Summit Daily News . "Dillon really doesn't have a town center."
Dillon was recreated in the age of automobiles and laid out without a typical main street. And some businesses that draw people, such as a movie theater, have fled to other locations, out near Interstate 70.