Tributes and laments continue to pour in across the Valleys for Arin Trook who was identified yesterday as the victim in the fatalAvalanchee accident Monday morning The Markley Hut is located outside Ashcroft in the Express Creek

Took was the education director for  for Aspen Center for Environmental Studies for last five years but has been associated with the organization for over 2 decades.He  leaves behind a wife and 2 children.

ACES has created a GoFundMe page where community members can donate

to the Arin Trook Memorial Fund to support Arin’s family during

this challenging time. The website for this page is

Additionally, Alpine Bank has set up an account for the Arin Trook

Memorial Fund. Persons wanting to make a donation to the Arin Trook

Memorial Fund can walk into any Alpine Bank to make a donation. In

lieu of donating in-person, donors can send checks to the following

address: Alpine Bank, Arin Trook Memorial Fund, Attn: Stefan

Reveal, 600 E. Hopkins Ave., Aspen, CO Last second bookings a nice Christmas present for area hotels.

Colorado Avalanche Information Center has reported 280 avalanches  trapping 10 int dividuals and killing 4 in just the last 11 days

Continues to issue strong warnings as avalanche conditions across the state remain as high alert so far there have been

According to the latest occapancy report from Aspen Snowmass December staged an impressive comeback from where it was at one point pacing behind over -18%. Rebounded to a record paid occupancy. Snowmass recorded its best December ever and Aspen its second best to 2016 in paid occupancy. December combined paid occupancy was 57.1%, +2.4% better than last year. Aspen posted 60.6%, a change of +0.3% and Snowmass beat last year by +2.7% achieving 51.3%.

Ski conditions and the national school calendar schedules were two key factors affecting the year over year performances. Recorded snowfall through December was double last year  As a result, mountain operations opened 2.5 times more terrain than the same time last year over the peak holiday window. The holidays for both towns were the true story. Christmas week fell short of last year despite this winter’s exceptional conditions. The driver of that change is a shift in the national school holiday calendar falling later and pushing more holiday vacationers out of December and into the first week of January.

Looking ahead to January , it seems to be  benefiting from a school break calendar shift pushing significant occupancy into the first 5 days than we would normally be in December numbers.   . However, January is suffering from lower performances from some key international markets, and as a result is pacing down -1.7%. Looking ahead at The winter months collectively are pacing +0.7% better than this time last year. With a late Easter and some additional spring programming soon to be announced booking should remain on pace.

In 2019 the City of Aspen is awarding more than $1.49 million in cash funds and in-kind support to non-profit organizations throughout the Roaring Fork Valley from the City of Aspen’s General Fund, Wheeler Fund, and Parks & Open Space Fund.   This represents a $113,935 increase over 2018.

Once a year the City of Aspen volunteer citizen board appointed by the City Council meets to review all grant requests. The Citizen Grant Review Committee evaluates each non-profit grant request for demonstrated financial need, fiscal viability, and adherence to the goals and values of the City of Aspen and value added to the community.  The Health and Human Services grants are reviewed by Pitkin County.

This year’s breakdown of grant funds include: Arts – $400,000 in cash funds and $16,000 in in-kind donations; General Non-Profits – $474,200 in cash funds and $103,000 in in-kind donations; Environmental Projects – $33,000; and Health and Human Services – $467,850.  Total funds of cash and in-kind donations is $1,494,650, up $113,935 from last year.

“I’m so pleased that we are able to increase the amount of grant support we offered to our area non-profits this year,” said Wheeler Opera House Executive Director Gena Buhler.  “The additional funds represent the Committees ability to fulfill grantees requested amounts, which better helps the City support these organizations.”

The 2020 application process will begin in May 2019. To find out more about the 2020 application process, please contact Julie Gillespie at or visit