Tuesday, November 20, 2018
Home » Editorials » Quick thoughts on bus service, backcountry respect, art centers, name changes and seniors…

Quick thoughts on bus service, backcountry respect, art centers, name changes and seniors…

You asked for it…so use it or lose it. As Ken Kesey once said, “You’re either on the bus or off the bus.”
Hey Crested Butte South—why aren’t you on the bus? For as long as there has been a regional bus system there have been residents in Crested Butte South lobbying loudly for a bus stop there. The bus has always picked up people at the highway turn to Crested Butte South but this summer the RTA is driving a bus into the subdivision. It’s not like anyone needs to fight for a seat. The early returns indicate about 25 total seats are being filled when the bus stops at the subdivision 12 times per day (is that twelve-and-a-half people getting on and then coming home?). So, on average, about two people get on or off when the bus comes in by the park. That’s better than one person, I suppose, but it’s not exactly showing a tremendous need. If you don’t use the bus, who can seriously complain later that the bus isn’t conveniently coming into the subdivision? The RTA is cautioning patience and it has only been a bit more than a week. But you’re either on the bus or you’re probably back on the highway…

Drone. The chamber of commerce sent up a drone over the parade on the Fourth of July. How American. I’m a little surprised the Mountain Men and Women didn’t use it for black powder target practice. But chamber executive director Dave Ochs focused on the photos and is estimating that 11,077, or we’ll say roughly 12,000, people were on Elk Avenue during the parade. Yeah. You weren’t wrong. It was busy.

Respect for the place. So the Gadfly has joined a couple other respected community members calling out people who party in the backcountry and leave trash. That sucks. The local senior class had the finger pointed at them for trashing a meadow in Ferris Creek after graduation. That was dumb and callous. Another group, maybe of the same age but certainly of the same sensitivity ilk, left a boatload of trash after partying at Long Lake this past weekend. There’s no proof it was the seniors but it is an example of how one thoughtless action (Ferris Creek) can taint a reputation. Hey kids (or whoever), the local backcountry is not your bleepin’ bedroom. It is a communal paradise—so treat it with respect.

Respect for the place. In that vein, someone recently suggested to me that the CBCS seniors give up the tradition of a silly prank that this year ended up with three of the tribe being banned from walking at graduation because of stupidity. Instead, maybe it is time to build a legacy and do a community project instead. The suggestion was to have each class work on the Baxter Gulch Trail for a weekend. The seniors can camp out on their own and spend a day or two working on a trail that benefits the community. Isn’t that a better idea than leaving 450 Dixie Cups of water in the teacher’s lounge?

Respect for the place. In that vein again, the paper just got a call from someone who regularly uses the Woods Walk. She was close to tears as she described the overnight destruction of a blooming Monument Plant. Apparently, some whacko took a machete to a living Monument Plant that was blooming near the trail. That is just malicious and again, shows a disregard for our communal backcountry and all that makes it special. Don’t pick the wildflowers and certainly don’t randomly kill the living plants that define this place.

Name change. The proposed affordable housing project near True Value is changing names. The Caddis Flats name apparently just wasn’t cutting it. So the developers are asking for suggestions. Poverty Gulch is the name of the town’s affordable housing project on the northeast side of town. Too bad. Great name. I doubt names like Paradise Divided, Divers Delight, Workington Gulch, the Purple Mountain Kush Crashpads, or Oh-Be-Busy Apartments will cut the mustard but send your suggestions to the Gunnison Valley Regional Housing Authority.

Art (facilities) ain’t cheap. There are two efforts going on at the moment to raise money for two art centers in the two towns in the upper valley. And it’s not a little money. The expectation is that a combined $35 million to $40 million will be needed to build the new Biery-Witt Arts Center in Mt. Crested Butte and the expanded Crested Butte Center for the Arts. Both are touted as serving different purposes and appealing to different but sometimes overlapping groups. That’s a lot of cash but both facilities are expected to be centerpieces in their respective communities. More art opportunity in a community known for its outdoor recreation is a plus. But man, that’s a bunch of money and hopefully the two groups stay on their friendly, parallel tracks…

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