Letters to the Editor, Jan. 4-6, 2017
Submissions from Park Record Readers
January 3, 2017
Reader recommends college over adventure
The “Local Adventurist” article (The Park Record Dec. 28, 2016) stirred up many feelings and memories for me, but I found it mostly pie-in-the-sky writing. “Making most out of life,” as the headline suggests is certainly subjective, especially in a youngster’s brain whose prefrontal cortex has yet to fully develop. I feel sad for his parents, as I’ve been down this road, and I was very close to dropping out and “living the dream.” The wisdom we try to bestow upon our offspring is that short-sighted dreams in our 20s differ greatly from the reality of our future life. Fortunately I took a different path. And now, as a parent, 20 years further along in life, I can reflect.
At 19 I was flying in helicopters during summer break from college as a wildland firefighter. I remember believing that this would be the best job forever, even when I’m 60 years old. I had a wise foreman, then 40, who told me to be careful mixing my job with my passions. She told me that after chasing fires in the woods for 20 years, she no longer wished to hike on her days off. I digested this and took it to heart. I stayed in college getting my professional degree.
I completely understand the pressure to succeed in your parents' eyes often clashes with a young person’s dreams. However, there’s an important quality we must teach our children: delayed gratification. And I believe higher education is an excellent example of this when the resources are available, both intellectually and financially.
I did stick it out through boring classes I hated to get my professional degree. It’s the best decision I’ve ever made. I did it without any financial help, living my last semester in college in my van. I did it and still managed to travel to 55 countries before I was 30. My overarching plea with young people is not to find this adventure story inspiring, but misguided. I’ve been skiing touring and rock climbing and travelling the world for most of my life now, but only after I sacrificed and delayed my gratification for these pleasures by mastering my mind in a higher education setting. I hope young people will learn there’s a time and a place for many things in life, and sowing many intellectual seeds when young can certainly lead to a more adventuresome tomorrow.
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Park City Mountain, employees and execs, go the extra mile
These past days must have broken records around Park City with large numbers of skiers and snowboarders on the mountain. Good for the local economy and another perfect time filled with wonderful snow and great experience for our visitors.
Sure, there were some lines at the most popular lifts and to our great surprise, nice things happened when we were skiing during that busy holiday period. As we arrived at the Quicksilver Gondola on our return trip to Park City from the Canyons area, a sizable crowd was waiting and an employee was making the rounds distributing water to everyone who wanting some. An impressive caring touch!
That same day, I had already spotted a few Park City executives working as lifties and couldn’t believe my eyes when the person handing me my skis, when I got off the gondola at Silverlode, was no other than Bill Rock, COO of Park City Mountain. Wow!
What a superb example in leadership and a refreshing surprise from a resort that most Parkites have loved to bash ever since it was acquired by Vail Resorts. This said, this season at Park City Mountain has been marked with a remarkable outgoing attitude by all employees making a concerted effort to engage their visiting guests in a friendly manner.
Way to go, Park City Mountain!
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A shout-out to The Park Record
My husband and I would like to start off the new year by complimenting The Park Record on a job well done. We’ve been vacationing here in Park City since we were first married, over 20 years, and about eight years ago made the leap to home ownership, hoping to make this special place our permanent home at some point. The first thing we do when we get into town, even at midnight driving from California, with our kids and dog, is make sure we pick up a Record along with milk and our other necessities for the first day. We’re so entertained by the columns “More Dogs on Main,” “Red Card Roberts” and sometimes even the Police Blotter. The recent article on salting the roads was very informative as have been all the stories regarding the Vail takeover of PCMR. Mountain Town News is a great feature and we loved the latest “Way We Were” about Park City 100 years ago. Even the weather forecast appears more accurate than my phone. So Happy New Year and keep up the great work!
Mary Kaye and David Ashkenaze
Laguna Niguel, California
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Utah Treasurer condemns monument designation
I am appalled by President Obama's decision today to designate a Bears Ears National Monument in southeastern Utah – a decision that blatantly ignores the will of the majority of Utahns and the input of every elected official in Utah who represents the area affected by the designation.
The president has clearly misused his authority under the Antiquities Act, and in so doing has jeopardized the well-being of many Utahns with vested interests in the affected region.
As chair of the Utah School and Institutional Trust Fund board of trustees, I am deeply concerned about the damaging impact this designation will have on lands held in trust for Utah public schools – an estimated 100,000 acres of school trust lands are contained within the designated monument, and the designation could have a disastrous impact on the endowment managed by the state for the benefit of its public school system. Approximately 64 percent of our state is federal public land, while only six percent is administered within the school trust. By his actions, the president is showing reckless disregard for Utah's public education system and its funding.
Further, as chair of the Utah Navajo Trust Fund, I am surprised at the disregard the president is showing for Native American groups – Utah Navajos in particular – who count these lands as their heritage.
As frustrated as I might be with today's decision, I am confident that our state's efforts to challenge this action appropriately through the many administrative, legal and legislative avenues available to us will yield positive results.
I will work with the incoming administration, Utah's congressional delegation, tribal leaders, our governor, our attorney general, the Utah legislature, and San Juan County officials to find the appropriate resolution to this important and complex issue.
Utah State Treasurer