November 27, 2010
Vail tree lighting is tonight Aspen Winternational starts today Beav’ crowns Gingerbread Champion
NorAm season begins Now a member of the US Ski Team, Vail’s Abby Ghent expects big results By John O’Neill Mountaineer Contributing Writer As recreational skiers have been enjoying turns on the soft snow this week, Vail’s Abby Ghent is hitting the hardest surfaces on the mountain for training. Skipping on the deep and instead opting for the terrain where maybe a centimeter of her fine tuned edges will drop below the surface, Ghent’s sacrifices are paying off. The Vail Ski and Snowboard Academy senior is getting set for her first season on the U.S. Ski Team’s developmental squad. Ghent joins the developmental team as one of only 15 athletes nation-
wide, both men and women. Ghent, who showed considerable results last year, joined the developmental squad earlier this year, stepping it up from club racer to U.S. Ski Team member. “Its definitely more competitive,” Ghent said. “All the girls have similar ability and all have those high goals.” Growing up and training with Ski and Snowboard Club Vail, Ghent wasn’t always on top. Her former ski club coach, Dan Stripp, attributes Ghent’s success to hard work and diligence in her training. “Abby has come a long way. She has a little [See NORAMS, page 22]
Vail local, U.S. Ski Team member and Ski and Snowboard Club Vail racer Abby Ghent charges down the slalom course on Howelsen Hill in Steamboat at the Surefoot Colorado Ski Cup last season. Ghent took the gold for the junior women in that race and is hoping for a big result at the North America Cup season opener in Loveland, which starts today. Mountaineer file photo courtesy Hannes Spaeh.
Beav’ tree lighting one of the brightest to date
Stocks sank during yesterday’s shortened session as jittery traders were afraid to commit to any holdings ahead of the weekend amid lingering uncertainty surrounding Europe’s debt troubles and North Korea’s war threats. The Dow Jones industrial average closed down 95.28 at 95.28. The Nasdaq closed at 2534.56 down 8.56, and the S&P 500 closed down 8.95 at 1189.40.
What recession? Shoppers eat up Black Friday deals
For one day at least, you could almost imagine the recession never happened. Millions of the nation’s shoppers braved rain and cold to crowd stores while others grabbed online bargains on what could be the busiest Black Friday ever. [See THE UPDATE, page 7]
22,000 bulbs ring in holiday season By John O’Neill Sylka Snyder of Edwards Elementary and Santa Claus of the North Pole rang in the Christmas holiday season at Beaver Creek last night. At the 30th annual tree lighting in Beaver Creek Village, about 4,000 people gathered for the festivities around the Black Family ice rink. “This is the conception of the Beaver Creek holiday tradition,” said Katie Tille, marketing coordinator for Beaver Creek. “It has always been an hour of celebration ending with the lighting of the tree. It’s traditional and the official start to the Beaver Creek season.”
The tree lighting was one of the biggest to date, according to village operations manager Jerry Hensel. Hensel said they dressed the tree in about 22,000 bulbs, about 5,000 more than the year before. To kick off the celebration, a seven-lady caroling group took to a platform on the ice rink to lead the audience in a series of carols. When the group was half way through “Jingle Bells,” the microphones went blank but the audience kept the tempo, cheerily singing in the holiday. After the caroling, local Vail Christian High School graduates and brother-sister duo, Galen and Meghan Jacobs, [See TREE, page 21]
About 4,000 people turned out at Beaver Creek last night for the resort’s annual tree lighting ceremony. About 22,000 bulbs adorn the tree, which is about 5,000 more than last year, making it one of the brightest holiday tree lightnings ever at Beaver Creek. Avery Cunliffe photo.
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Local businesses see mixed results from Black Friday Some stores flourish, others languish as holiday shopping season begins By Matt Minich Mountaineer Staff Writer
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The yearâ€™s biggest shopping day gave a boost to some local retailers yesterday, but others found themselves left out of the excitement. Traffic in the Avon WalMart was about twice that of an average Friday, said manager Justin Kick, who added that this increase was in line with the increase the store sees most years after Thanksgiving. For the most part, WalMart customers were walking out with discounted electronics, he said. The valleyâ€™s other major electronics retailer, CostCo, saw a more modest increase in traffic, said Sales Auditor Jamie Vasquez. There were about 10 percent more customers in the store yesterday than on an average Friday, Vasquez said, but she said those customers seemed to be going after some of the storeâ€™s most expensive items. â€œEvery time Iâ€™ve left the office, there has been a television in one or more of the shoppersâ€™ carts,â€? she said. Big-box retailers werenâ€™t the only ones that saw extra business yesterday, some of the valleyâ€™s smaller stores
also cashed in on the beginning of the holiday season. Eva Vasilyeva, manager of Arriesgado Clothing in Vail, said far more people than usual were coming through her door to take advantage of her buy-oneget-one-free sale, and that they were buying more than ever. Discounts might not have been responsible for business success in Vail, though, said Sean Filiault, manager of Pepi Sports. Filiault said his store saw about a 10 percent increase in business from the same day in previous years even though his store offered no Black Friday specials. The spike in sales from the average Friday had less to do with Black Friday, and more to do with the start of ski season, he said. While ski season helped Vail business owners cash in, it meant businesses in the Edwards Riverwalk got passed up. Raymond Bleesz, owner of Brush Creek Dry Goods, kicked off a five-day sale to celebrate his storeâ€™s 11th anniversary yesterday, but said that didnâ€™t translate to a jump in traffic. â€œPeople are skiing off the turkey they ate yesterday, so itâ€™s been slow,â€? he said. Collen McCarthy, owner of the nearby Baggage Cheque, also said her business hadnâ€™t seen any bump from Black Friday, or even a slow and steady stream of customers. â€œThe parking lot is empty,â€? she said. â€œItâ€™s been empty all day.â€?
Vail tree lighting is tonight Holidays in Vail, an annual celebration presented by the Town of Vail, takes place this Saturday evening with the annual Mayorâ€™s Tree Lighting ceremonies in Vail Village and LionsHead. The festivities begin at 5:30 p.m. with the lighting of the 50 foot tall spruce tree at Slifer Square in Vail Village. Then at approximately 6:15 p.m., a Childrenâ€™s Light Parade will make its way along Meadow Drive into the LionsHead Mall. Members of the public are invited to take part in the approximately one-mile parade route. In LionsHead, the tree lighting begins at 6:15 p.m. near Billyâ€™s Island Grill restaurant. Mayor Dick Cleveland will do the honor
of lighting both holiday trees that evening. In addition, the Arrabelle at Vail Square will offer free cider and cookies at the LionsHead location prior to the tree lighting. Also, ice skating and skate rentals will be offered nearby from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. A free outdoor movie will be presented by Quiksilver in the Arrabelle Square beginning at 7:30 p.m. The event also includes an appearance by Santa Claus, plus carolers and other entertainment. â€œWeâ€™re excited to be part of this yearâ€™s holiday season,â€? said Laurie Asmussen of Eagle Valley Events, organizer of Holidays in Vail. â€œIt has been a great collaborative effort on behalf of many entities includ-
ing the Town of Vail, Vail Resorts, Highline Sports & Entertainment and the Vail Recreation District.â€? The collaboration has created more events between Thanksgiving and New Yearâ€™s Eve than ever before, including Snow Daze and the new Vail Holidays events, she said. â€œOur merchant community and the town worked hard over the past few years to be sure we had our holiday decorations up, trees lit and activities happening for celebrations leading up to the Hanukah, Christmas and New Yearâ€™s holidays,â€? said Asumssen. â€œThe fantastic opening of Vail Mountain has definitely contributed to a festive spirit in anticipation of a great holiday season.â€?
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DUI enforcement ramps up Vail's best NEWS
Thanksgiving numbers not in yet, but more arrests expected By Matt Minich To those in the valley who love the night life, be warned – the heat is on, and it will be until Monday. Since Wednesday morning, about a dozen more police officers than usual have made patrols of Eagle County streets as part of a statewide anti-DUI campaign. The increase in enforcement is not uncommon, similar efforts have been made this time of year for more than a decade, said Colorado Department of Transportation Spokesperson Heather Halpape. The campaigns are timed around party weekends throughout the year like Halloween, New Year’s and Thanksgiving. This Halloween weekend, officers in Eagle County made 16 DUI arrests, and they made 13 arrests during Thanksgiving weekend 2009. According to information distributed by CDOT, more than 30,000 people are arrested for DUI every year in Colorado. Of the 200 traffic fatalities every year in Colorado, about 40 percent involve alcohol, Halpape said. The number of people killed by drunk drivers in Colorado has gone down slightly in the last few years, Halpape said, but she couldn’t say for sure whether this has
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anything to do with the “The Heat is On,” campaign. “We’re certainly hope that people are getting the message, but the police aren’t having any trouble finding drunk drivers,” she said. County enforcement will be performed by officers making patrols in all parts of the valley, said Eagle County Sheriff’s Deputy Jacob Best, who this year is the Gore Range DUI Enforcement coordinator. Those officers working with Best come from the Avon, Eagle and Vail Police Departments and the County Sheriff. Their overtime will be paid not by their respective departments, but through a CDOT grant. In an interview yesterday, Best said arrest numbers for the weekend so far hadn’t been reported yet, but he expects to see more arrests to come. “I hate to say it, but I can almost guarantee that there will be at least one DUI tonight,” he said. Penalties for driving under the influence in Colorado have gotten more severe in recent years, and people caught driving drunk three or more times can now have their licenses revoked for as long as five years. According to CDOT, the average cost of a DUI conviction is 2009 was more than $10,000.
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Vail Mountaineer Saturday, November 27, 2010
BOP: Last year’s trophies make this year’s creative Rob Westrich’s Golden Eagle photo will grace all posters, ads, banners, packets and signage for 2010 Birds of Prey
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Last winter, Missouri photographer Rob Westrich’s dramatic black and white limited edition raptor photos climbed onto the Audi Birds of Prey podium as official trophies for the 2009 event. This year, they will literally be everywhere during Beaver Creek’s World Cup Weekend as Westrich’s photo of a Golden Eagle serves as the overall creative for the 2010 Audi FIS Birds of Prey World Cup. Named “Official Artist” for Birds of Prey, his photo graces all collateral materials for Birds of Prey, including posters, credentials, print ads, banners, event packets and signage. He will also be providing a trio of different raptor photos as awards for race winners. “Mr. Westrich’s photos are incredible,” said Michael Imhof, Vice President of Sales and Operations for the Vail Valley Foundation, “and I can guarantee his Golden Eagle image truly conveys the drama and intensity of the Audi Birds of Prey World Cup races. It is very striking and very personal.” Westrich is owner and operator of Westrich Photography, one of St. Louis’ most respected and prolific photo studios. His Raptor Series is a fine art study that captures the majesty, character and arresting personality of 14 different birds of prey in black and white photographic portraiture. The series has won worldwide acclaim and has been delivered to collectors throughout the United States and 20 countries around the world. In March, Westrich was presented with the Nominee title at the 5th Annual Black and White Spider Awards in the Wildlife category at the prestigious Nomination and Winners Photo Show, “attended” by 35,000 online viewers that logged on live from 154 countries.
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In addition to the Audi Birds of Prey trophies, Westrich’s Raptor Series photographs will also be on display in the World Cup registration area on the main BEAVER CREEK WORLD CUP WEEK level of Beaver Creek’s Gerald R. RACE Ford Hall. He has DECEMBER 3– 5a| framed DOWNHILL SLALOM | SUPER-G also donated version of the| GIANT Golden Eagle print for auction at the annual Black Diamond Ball on Friday evening. The print is number one of a limited edition of just 50 prints offered worldwide. For more information on Rob Westrich and Westrich Photography, visit www.westrichphoto.com. For additional information on the 2009 Audi Birds of Prey, check out www.bcworldcup.com. A PROJECT OF THE VAIL VALLEY FOUNDATION
RAPTOR PHOTO: ROB WESTRICH PHOTOGRAPHY
Locals Vonn, Schleper to start at Aspen Winternational World Cup GS today Vail locals Lindsey Vonn and Sarah Schleper will join Julia Mancuso and Megan McJames today in the start house as the Aspen Winternational opens the North American swing of the women’s Alpine World Cup. Also racing GS will be Leanne Smith and Laurenne Ross, while
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Hailey Duke and Resi Stiegler will jump into the slalom tomorrow. “I’m really looking forward to Aspen and the next technical races to hopefully get some good points,” said Vonn, who placed 6th to lead the team at the last world cup slalom. Fans can catch the action with a full television broadcast package
featuring coverage on NBC, Versus and Universal Sports. NBC will feature the giant slalom Sunday at 1 p.m. ET with a replay set for Saturday, Dec. 4 at 4 p.m. ET on Versus followed by the slalom at 5 p.m. ET. Universal Sports will air the races on its 24-hour TV network Dec. 6-7 at noon ET.
Saturday, November 27, 2010
Crowds gather around Bernie Oswald’s winning gingerbread mansion yesterday at Beaver Creek. The profits from the event went to CASA of Eagle, Lake, Summit and Clear Creek Counties. Avery Cunliffe photo.
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Mi gingerbread New Opportunity!!! casa su casa Beaver Creek community gathers, raises funds for local non-profit By John O’Neill Mountaineer Contributing Writer More than a thousand people gathered at Ford Hall in Beaver Creek last night for a silent auction and raffle that acted as a fundraiser for Court Appointed Special advocates (CASA.) CASA is a non-profit organization spanning Eagle, Lake, Summit and Clear Creek counties or the fifth judicial district of Colorado. The organization aids children, who in court cases, were dubbed as victims of neglect or abuse. “The most important thing to us are our kids,” said CASA volunteer Andy Lewis. “It is a very worthwhile cause and a chance to truly make a difference in somebody’s life who may not have had any good chances to begin with.” The fundraiser lasted from 4 to 8 p.m. and attendees donated money, participated in a raffle for a quilt stitched by a
local group of women out of Eagle, and battled in a silent auction for anything ranging from a teddy bear to a week vacation in London. The gingerbread houses were the main attraction and were also being sold. The houses displayed were made by local kids, aspiring amateurs and professional pastry chefs. “They are incredible,” Gianna Vecchiarelli of Denver said about the gingerbread houses. “It looks like it took a lot of time. The pros’ were very intricate.” The winner of the contest went to Bernie Oswald with, in gingerbread house proportions, a six- to nine-story edible castle. As the gingerbread houses were being made, CASA executive director Kathy Reed sat and watched with a smile. “100 percent of the profits from this are going to CASA,” Reed said. “It is [See GINGERBREAD CASA, page 20]
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Now playing in the Vail Valley
Saturday 11/27 and Sunday 11/28 Burlesque (PG-13) 11:30 AM 3:00 PM 6:15 PM 9:30 PM Love and Other Drugs (R) 1:00 PM 4:00 PM 7:30 PM 11:05 PM Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 (PG-13) 11:50 AM 3:25 PM 7:00 PM 10:35 PM
In this seventh movie of the beloved Harry Potter series, Harry faces new troubles; he must collect all of the Horcruxes that the evil Lord Voldemort has left behind. He has no idea where these are and he has to destroy them all, even without the faintest idea how to do so. Unstoppable, a 20th Century Fox drama about a runaway train carrying a cargo of toxic chemicals. Pits an engineer and his conductor in a race against time. They’re chasing the runaway train in a separate locomotive and need to bring it under control before it derails on a curve and causes a toxic spill that will decimate a town. A salesman competes in the cutthroat world of pharmaceuticals to hawk a male performance enhancement drug in “Love and Other Drugs,” based on Jamie Reidy’s memoir “Hard Sell: The Evolution of a Viagra Salesman.”
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Early signs pointed to bigger crowds at many stores including Best Buy, Sears, Macyâ€™s and Toys R Us, some of which had earlier openings than past years or even round-the-clock hours. Minnesotaâ€™s Mall of America and mall operators Taubman Centers Inc. and Macerich Co. also reported more customers than last year. But the most encouraging sign for retailing and for the economy was what Americans were throwing in their carts. Shoppers still clutched lists and the buying frenzy was focused on the deals on TVs and toys, but many were treating themselves while they bought gifts for others, adding items like boots, sumptuous sweaters, jewelry and even dresses for special occasions.
South American leaders urged to strengthen ties
Members of a fledgling South American defense union should stop seeking solutions from the United States and instead turn to their own leaders for answers, Ecuadorâ€™s president said yesterday. President Rafael Correa spoke at the opening of a one-day summit of the Union of South American Nations, or UNASUR, which drew presidents including Venezuelaâ€™s Hugo Chavez,
Saturday, November 27, 2010
[From page 1]
Argentinaâ€™s Cristina Fernandez and Brazilâ€™s Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva. Correa said the region has looked to Washington for help for decades. â€œWe need to rescue our own thoughts at this time,â€? he said. â€œWe have to think for ourselves.â€?
Villagers claim deaths, complicating Afghan push
Locals in this southern Afghan valley have accused U.S. Marines of regularly killing civilians since they launched an aggressive campaign against the Taliban here over a month ago - claims the Marines say are untrue and fueled by insurgent propaganda. But the Marines acknowledge that unless they can change peopleâ€™s minds, they stand little chance of winning the local support necessary to tame a key area of Afghanistan that has been the deadliest place for coalition troops this year. The dilemma highlights the difficulty of waging war in Afghanistan. If troops use too little force, they may be ineffective in fighting the Taliban. If they use too much, they increase the risk of causing civilian casualties - or being blamed [See THE UPDATE, page 8]
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Vail Mountaineer Saturday, November 27, 2010
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Karzai aide: UK â€˜to blameâ€™ for Taliban impostor
A senior Afghan official has blamed the British secret service for bringing a Taliban impostor to take part in top-level peace talks with the Afghan government, newspapers reported yesterday. The reports in U.S. and British newspapers follow the revelation that a man leading the Taliban side of peace talks with the Afghan government was impersonating former Taliban Cabinet minister Mullah Akhtar Muhammad Mansour. The Washington Post quoted Mohammad Omar Daudzai, President Hamid Karzaiâ€™s chief of staff, as saying Thursday that British authorities brought the man to meet with Karzai in July or August. Karzai has denied meeting with Mansour. Prime Minister David Cameronâ€™s office and Britainâ€™s Foreign Office both declined comment on the reports.
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Defiant North Korea fires artillery warning shots
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A defiant flash of North Korean artillery within sight of the island that it attacked this week sent a warning signal to Seoul and Washington: The North is not backing down. The apparent military drill yesterday came as the top U.S. commander in South Korea toured Yeonpyeong island to survey the wreckage from the rain of artillery three days earlier. As a U.S. nuclear-powered aircraft carrier headed toward the Yellow Sea for exercises next week with South Korea, the North warned that the joint maneuvers will push the Korean peninsula to the â€œbrink of war.â€? South Koreaâ€™s government, meanwhile, struggled to recoup from the surprise attacks that killed four people, including two civilians, and forced its beleaguered defense minister to resign Thursday. President Lee Myung-bak yesterday named a former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to the post. Tensions have soared between the Koreas since the Northâ€™s strike Tuesday destroyed large parts of Yeonpyeong in a major escalation of their sporadic skirmishes along the disputed sea border.
Hershey sues Mars over similar candy packaging
Bitter rivals in the candy aisle may also duke it out in court. The Hershey Co. sued Mars Inc. this week in federal district court, with the maker of Hersheyâ€™s and Reeseâ€™s chocolate candies accusing the maker of Snickers, M&Ms and Dove candies of mimicking some of its packaging. Hershey is claiming trademark dilution and infringe-
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