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Aspen hits carbon-reduction goal

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Why is golf needed?

JACKSON HOLE, Wyo. – Columnist Jonathan Schechter says he has nothing against golf. He plays once or twice a year. But he sees the proliferating golf courses in Jackson Hole producing nothing of long-term good.

Where one golf course existed 20 years ago, today there are seven, with several more planned. This baffles Schechter, who points out that golfing is stagnant as a sport. Nationally, more golf courses actually closed last year than opened. The only premise for golf in mountain valleys is as a conduit for selling real estate.

OK, so what’s wrong with that? Because, like so many other things, the valleys on both sides of the Teton Range “seem to be hell-bent-for-leather to make ourselves increasingly like every place in America,” says Schechter.

“We’re allowing — if not encouraging — the rapid development of those same get-’em-anywhere amenities that you can, by definition, get anywhere, without really asking ourselves about the consequences. For instance, if we approve a zillion golf courses, can we really claim to be shocked when our community character starts being informed by a country club mentality?”

 

Ideas Festival half sold out

ASPEN, Colo. – The Aspen Ideas Festival last July was a big hit. It was one household name after another stopping by to chat about big ideas: the Clintons, Bill and Hillary, and then Colin Powell, Katie Couric, newspaper columnists, CEOs, and on and on.

Indeed, the six-day festival was such a success that it’s already half-sold out for next summer. Organizers, reports The Aspen Times, expect up to 1,300 passholders to hear thoughts about the energy future, China, and the arts, among a few dozen other topics. A four-day event pass goes for $2,000.

 

Yin and yang in Sun Valley

Quote: “Sun Valley's one of the few places in the world where decadence can coexist with conscience." Short-story writer and columnist John Rember, writing in the Idaho Mountain Express.

 

Quartz trumps granite

TELLURIDE, Colo. – Granite countertops have been de rigeur for high-end homes for a good number of years now. But the Telluride Daily Planet reports that it’s not enough at a spanking-new house that bills itself as “high-tech Telluride.”