This week on CrossCurrents, Amy Kimberly, Executive Director of CCAH and Peter Gilbert, Executive Director of Dance Initiative on the new arts and rehearsal space in Carbondale, "The Launchpad", formerly the Gordon Cooper Library.

The USA Pro Challenge returns to Aspen with help from a small army of volunteers.

Hazy air also arrived this week, from fires in the Pacific Northwest.

We hear from a painter who also wrote lyrics for Elton John.

The Aspen Music Festival and School gets ready to wrap up another season.

Carbondale commuters deal with a restricted popular park and ride.

And an Aspen developer drops an affordable lodge plan to avoid a ballot measure.

Festival Las Americas

An event aimed at showing the Carbondale community its diversity will come to Sopris Park this weekend. The 13th year of Festival Las Americas is what has been called a “cultural mixer” by some of its organizers.

Creative Commons/Flickr/woodleywonderworks

School starts next week for students across the valley. The Roaring Fork School District operates schools in Basalt, Carbondale and Glenwood Springs. Aspen Public Radio’s Marci Krivonen spoke to superintendent Diana Sirko about how this year will be different than past years.

Diana Sirko is superintendent of schools for the Roaring Fork School District. This fall, the district may go to the voters for help in funding new school buildings and teacher housing. The school board will make a decision next week on whether to hold an election.


The Pitkin County Commissioners are unhappy with what they’ve seen so far in a BLM plan for existing oil and gas leases on the Thompson Divide. They’re crafting a letter to the agency. Aspen Public Radio’s Marci Krivonen reports.

Pitkin County gets an early look at the BLM’s preliminary draft Environmental Impact Statement because it’s a cooperating agency. A public version will be released in November. It’ll decide what to do with more than two dozen undeveloped oil and gas leases in the Thompson Divide, southwest of Carbondale. Pitkin County wants the leases canceled.

Courtesy Roaring Fork Transportation Authority

Sixty-nine new parking spaces are being created at the Carbondale Park and Ride, along with additional bike parking and restroom facilities for drivers and the public. RFTA facility director Mike Hermes says he hopes this will help fill a need, at least for a year or two.

Carbondale & Rural Fire Protection District

  Residents and businesses in Carbondale, and in the surrounding areas, are in a bind. Their fire district is running out of money. After hiring local and national consultants, the Carbondale and Rural Fire Protection District is now reviewing a new Master Plan. The Board of Directors for the fire district will meet on Wednesday to consider the inch-thick document, which came with a less than $90,000 price tag.

Elise Thatcher

  Students at Roaring Fork High School will soon be just down the hall from a doctor. A clinic is opening at Carbondale’s High School, after three successful locations in the Basalt schools. Haidith Ramirez-Leon is overseeing the expansion. She says Medicaid or private insurance are billed first.

 Chances are, you've never heard of Public Counsel of the Rockies...until now. This little organization is based out of the Benedict Building in Aspen, and has no staff, but is a heavy hitter when it comes to making big changes on issues of public interest. Tim McFlynn is the founder and board chair of Public Counsel. He shares the organization's history and his inspiration for creating it. Chelsea Brundige is a trustee on the board of Public Counsel, and runs the Counsel's Smart Water Program. She also joins the conversation. 

Thompson Divide Coalition

The Thompson Divide Coalition hopes a successful negotiation with an energy company in Gunnison will set a precedent closer to home. 

The Coalition is working to keep natural gas drilling out of the Divide, southwest of Carbondale. Three companies have undeveloped leases. The second largest, Gunnison Energy, this week agreed to protect the land surface in the Divide through methods like directional drilling. Zane Kessler is with the Coalition.