The Roaring Fork Valley doesn’t have the population of Austin, Denver, New York, or LA, but the folks around here are as enthusiastic as anyplace about expressing their views. That’s why hundreds of women, and men and children supporting them, showed up for Carbondale and Aspen’s Women’s Marches Saturday. Turnout in Carbondale was strong for the size of the community, with an estimated 500 or so demonstrators on the anniversary of President Trump’s inauguration. In Aspen, hundreds more marched and skied. In all locations, social justice and women’s issues were the themes. Carbondale marchers included immigration in their event, with the procession going directly to the local Unitarian Universalist Church, where longtime local Sandra Lopez is taking sanctuary to avoid deportation. Lopez came out and addressed the crowd, according to the Post-Independent. She thanked everyone who marched, calling them “angels” for their support.
Saturday into Sunday, some much-needed snow fell in the high country, but not nearly as much as down on the front range, where many places got more than a foot Sunday, and schools were delayed for today. Snowmass and Sunlight reported 8 inches new Sunday morning, with the others in our valley generally getting 3 to 4. There was at least one traffic problem in the valley– Authorities announced a little before 4:00 there’d been a wreck on the westbound or downvalley side of Highway 82 near mile marker 22 at Emma Road. The downvalley lanes were closed for a time, and traffic was also diverted onto 2 Rivers Road. The wreckage was cleared and the highway reopened a little after 5.
The Aspen Daily News reports it’s that time of the year… time for the flu to be affecting more people in the upper end of the valley. Pitkin County health officials tell the paper at least 2 people have had the flu so severely they’ve had to be hospitalized. They say that’s about average for a given winter. They are concerned, however, about this year’s H3N2 strain. The sheer number of cases has suddenly gone up, and as many as 5 percent of the population had it earlier this month.
The Aspen Times is reporting there are now at least 9 potential candidates for 3 spots on Basalt Town Council, in a vote coming up April 3rd. Nominating petitions are now in the hands of Ryan Slack, Lem Bolanos, and the incumbent councilman a lot of folks weren’t sure whether he was running for re-election or not, Gary Tennenbaum, as of late last week. Those petitions, each with the signatures of at least 25 registered voters, are due back into the town clerk’s office today.
It’s a local about-face– Aspen Valley Hospital has decided to opt into Colorado’s Proposition 106, the End of Life Options Act voters approved in the fall of 2016. That means the hospital will start offering terminally-ill patients the chance to end their lives on medication. HomeCare & Hospice of the Valley is also opting into the Act now. Both organizations will have AVH’s Lori Maloy explain it to you tomorrow night, at “Let’s Talk Life,” starting at 6:00 at the Aspen School District Theatre at the elementary school. She talked to us about it too– listen for a special Community Desk throughout today and tomorrow, here on the Mammoth.
Congrats to Aspen locals Alex Ferreira and Torin Yater-Wallace, the halfpipe skiers who locked down their trips to Pyongcheng for the Winter Olympics Friday with strong performances in the final qualifier at Mammoth Mountain, California. The halfpipe gold medalist from 2014, David Wise of Nevada, also cemented his spot, and the 4th one isn’t totally clear yet, but is expected by many to be filled by Aaron Blunck of Crested Butte. He’ll be on this side of the hill this week, competing in the XGames, defending his gold medal from last year.
On the World Cup women’s ski tour at Cortina, Italy… Americans Lindsey Vonn and Mikaela Shiffrin finished 2nd & 3rd behind Italian Sofia Goggia in one downhill… then Lindsey went out and won the 2nd downhill, for her 79th World Cup win, improving on her all-time record. Then Sunday in a Super-G, the one discipline Shiffrin’s never won, she missed a gate and didn’t finish the course. Mikaela’s still on pace to defend her overall women’s World Cup from last year, leading the standings by some 800 World Cup points.
In case you missed our Saturday basketball broadcasts, the Basalt Longhorn girls really had the number of the Delta team that had embarrassed them at home by 37 points a month ago. Basalt got 17 points from Cintia Miramontes and 12 from Kate Schrock, and in a much tougher battle, led the Panthers much of the way before losing 56 to 54. And the boys had a battle they almost won too, leading by 2 points after 3 quarters, but Delta picked up the pace in the 4th… final score 59 to 52. We’ll have the comments from the coaches, and all the other weekend scores too, later today and tomorrow morning as well, on the high school sports report, here on The Mammoth.