Editor:

In May, the Roaring Fork Valley Horse Council discovered that no equine experts had been consulted by a town of Snowmass Village community volunteer board of citizens or by the Snowmass Village Town Council before bringing the current “Rodeo Plan” forward to the planning commissioners.

We now are encouraging the residents and visitors of Snowmass Village and our Aspen-area communities to become involved. These safety aspects for the rodeo contestants, their animals, the stock contractor and the spectators are the driving factors for our decision-making. We are deeply disappointed in the unanimous “approval with recommendations” by the planning commissioners but we ready to help make the plan right the first time, for the future.

The next discussion is today (July 18) at 4 p.m. at the town council’s meeting room. We are asking anyone interested in the Town Park Plan to attend, listen and speak.

Our position of record is: The Town Park Plan is a plan that is inadequate to sustain a safe efficient rodeo. The horse council asked that planning commissioners not rubber stamp a plan without the review and complete input from the Snowmass Western Heritage Association, which produces the rodeo, the contestants and back-of-the-house and front-of-the-house rodeo staff. They could also gather opinions from the 22,000 annual spectators that have grown to love the rodeo.

A Rodeo Safety Report issued May 25 can be found on the RFVHC website, rfvhorsecouncil.org.

Karin Reid Offield

RFVHC president