Children's Garden

City of Ketchum
P.O. Box 2315
480 East Avenue N.
Ketchum, Idaho 83340
"The Original Mountain Town"

October 16, 2014
In This Issue
A Message from Mayor Nina Jonas: Celebrate World Food Day Locally

Today is World Food Day, a day we recognize the importance of having enough high-quality food for everyone to lead active, healthy lives.

Our community has a strong focus on a local food supply. The benefits of eating food grown locally include a better regional economy, reduced transportation impacts, sustainable local resource management, nutrition and horticulture education, community connectivity and tasty meals.

We are fortunate to have a number of organizations working toward these goals: The Hunger Coalition, the Sawtooth Botanical Gardens, Idaho's Bounty, Wood River Farmers' Market and the Wood River Sustainability Center. The economic viability of local food sources is shown on practically every restaurant menu in town and celebrated with the annual Sun Valley Harvest Festival.

Within the city of Ketchum, we actively support these values with the Watch-Me-Grow Children's Education Garden adjacent to Hemingway School, a Grow-A-Row for the Hunger Coalition at the garden, a commitment to pesticide-free city plant management, support to the Wood River Farmers Market, edible landscaping such as raspberry bushes at Lucy Loken Park and fruit trees by Hemingway School, water conservation to allow for a larger water supply for downstream agriculture, and a possible partnering with Gotham Greens to build a rooftop greenhouse on the city street department's headquarters.  

World Food Day was established in 1945 by the Food and Agriculture Organization, FAO, of the UN. It is a day of collaboration for individuals and groups of all backgrounds such as farmers, public health organizations, nutritionists, restaurants, school children and, of course, government officials.

At home, strengthening our local food supply is yet another way to promote our community, enhance our economic diversity, care for our lands and connect to one another.

Cheers, Nina

Email me at


As a second-home owner in Bridgepoint Condominiums, I've noticed an ever-growing flow of traffic up and down Second Avenue. Many of the drivers are using it as a bypass to Highway 75 and traveling well beyond the posted 20 mph - especially down the hill.  Not only is the excessive traffic noisy, it can be especially hazardous when people are walking their dogs up the east side of Second Avenue where there is no curb and gutter or sidewalk and cars are often parked in the graveled side of the road. The speed enforcement has been virtually non-existent and police presence minimal, in my observation as a part-time resident. I would really like to see some regular traffic enforcement and/or traffic calming measures enacted on Second Avenue between Serenade Lane and Cottonwood Street to help slow the flow and hopefully divert more through traffic onto 75, where it should be.

--Doug Heffernan, Salt Lake City


Thank you for calling this to our attention. As a result of your request, we have placed equipment on Second Avenue to determine the volume of traffic, period of peak traffic volume and vehicles' speeds. We will review the data upon completion of the study next week. Preliminary results indicate that your observations are correct. If the final data bears this out, the Ketchum Police Department will begin a period of special enforcement and education in the area, and ask for citizens' cooperation in reminding their neighbors of the speed limit.


We then will conduct another traffic survey to assess the effectiveness of these efforts. If necessary, installing speed humps to slow traffic is a possible solution. If an area does not meet the criteria defined by the city for speed humps, neighbors may pay for installation of speed humps themselves, subject to city approval.


We also recently changed from angled parking to parallel parking along the east side of Second Avenue to create more room for pedestrians.


Do you have a question for Mayor Nina Jonas? 


Note: If you submit a question to "Ask Nina," your name may be published unless you request that it be withheld.



Give up a job as a schoolteacher and a tugboat operator to run a jazz festival? A bit risky? It was a leap of faith and love -- both for family and for jazz for Carol and Jeff Loehr.


The Sun Valley Jazz Jamboree, celebrating its 25th anniversary this week, was the creation of Carol's parents, Tom and Barbara Hazzard. They were driving home to Boise from a California jazz festival in the fall of 1988, and thought it would be a great idea for Sun Valley.


With the help of former Sun Valley Company General Manager Wally Huffman, they selected the slowest weekend of the year for the inaugural festival. Fans came in droves and the jazz festival was born. Today it attracts people from every U.S. state and Canadian province and several foreign countries.


The Loehrs had always helped, starting out as "gofers" and progressing to taking charge of housing and ground transportation before being appointed to the board of directors.


When Carol's father was diagnosed with cancer, he asked whether she and her husband would take over. "It was my dad's dream, and we spent about a year thinking about it," she said. "It meant that we would both have to leave our other jobs."


They opted for the family dream, and her father was able to train them in all the details before he passed away 10 years ago.


"It takes all year to organize the festival, and we love it," she said. "A big plus is that my husband used to be gone two weeks every month and now we get to work together. Getting to know the musicians and sponsors and patrons is another plus."


The music has evolved along with the festival. The first patrons were the World War II generation, who came for big-band and Dixieland tunes. "We've branched out into zydeco and blues to attract a younger audience," she said. "This year we're having a Western swing dance with Billy Mata and the Texas Tradition, and that's a big leap for us. "


This year's festival features 40 bands with performances by more than 200 musicians. Special attractions will be San Diego's "Queen of Boogie Woogie" Sue Palmer and Her Motel Swing Orchestra and the all-acoustic Gonzalo Bergara Quartet from Argentina. There have been free lunchtime concerts in Town Square for three days and "pop-in" concerts at local restaurants.


The approximately 4,000 patrons will include one very special guest: Carol's mother, now 88 years old, who is watching the family dream continue.


A master plan for bicycle and pedestrian routes throughout Blaine County will go before the Ketchum City Council Monday at 5:30 p.m.


Council members will be asked to approve the formal adoption of the Blaine County Community Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan.


The plan creates a to-do list to improve bicycle paths throughout the county, dividing them into projects that are easy to accomplish and those that are relatively expensive, said Council Member Jim Slanetz, one of Ketchum's representatives on the working group that created the document. "It will help us create a consistency throughout the whole county," he added.


Among the major recommendations for Ketchum are these:

  • Consider reducing the four traffic lanes on Main Street to three lanes to create more space for bicyclists and pedestrians, and safety improvements on 4th Street. These are also recommended in Ketchum's 2006 Downtown Master Plan.
  • Construct a separated, paved path from Saddle Road to Knob Hill.
  • Improve the bike path along Warm Springs Road. A long-term goal is to reconstruct Warm Springs Road with bicycle and pedestrian facilities on both sides of the road.
  • Re-align and improve pedestrian crossing at 10th Street.
  • Improve signage at street crossings along the Wood River Trail.

The American League of Bicyclists already recognizes Ketchum as a silver-level Bike Friendly Community. The proposed City Council resolution notes that the bicycling industry adds an estimated $133 billion to the U.S. economy and that well-planned bicycle and pedestrian systems are known to increase "tourist revenue, property value, retail sales and the attraction of good employees looking for a high quality of life atmosphere."


Jackson, Wy., has spent an estimated $1.7 million over the past 10 years on trail systems, and has benefited from an estimated $18 million annual boost to the economy, according to the master plan.


In addition to Slanetz, city representatives on the working group were Juerg Stauffacher, parks and natural resources superintendent; Joyce Allgaier, director of planning and building, and Lisa Horowitz, former director of community and economic development.


Marriage License Two city of Ketchum employees, Jennifer L. Smith and Heather Johns, are one of the first same-sex couples to apply for a marriage license in Blaine County.


Smith, director of parks and recreation, and Johns, information services coordinator, met skiing on Bald Mountain in 2008. "It didn't take long for us to realize how much more we had in common: love of the outdoors, the live-and-let-live nature of Idaho, dogs, political debates and the humor that we found in every way and in everything possible," Smith said.


The two were both born in the 1960s, just preceding the 1969 New York City Stonewall Riots after a police raid of a gay bar and considered by many as the beginning of the civil rights era for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.


Smith has worked for the city of Ketchum since May 2001. Johns served in the U.S. Air Force during the "don't-ask, don't-tell" era of the American military. She was stationed in locations including Iraq, Japan, Korea, Philippines, Bahrain, New Zealand, Australia and Oman. She was living in Boise when the two met.


They plan to be married by the end of the month in a private ceremony with Mayor Nina Jonas officiating.

no ebola in Idaho So Far
There are no suspected or confirmed cases of Ebola in Idaho at this time, according to the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare. State and county health officials are continuing to monitor the situation.


Idaho Falls is the only city in the state served by Frontier Airlines, on which an Ebola victim flew from Cleveland to Dallas. The aircraft has since been cleaned twice in accordance with procedures recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


Additional information is available at the following websites:

Screening Criteria for EDs:

Detailed Emergency Medical Services Checklist for EBOLA Preparedness:

EBOLA Screening Criteria for EMS:  



Retaining Smith Optics

The question of whether Smith Optics will stay or leave town has been a major business concern since the company announced it would review alternative locations. As part of our efforts to retain Smith, the Ketchum Urban Renewal Agency funded a new information packet on the city's advantages as a business location. 


Mayor Nina Jonas also created a special task force to work to retain Smith. Members are Idaho Department of Commerce Chief Economic Development Officer Chrissy Bowers, Business Attraction Specialist Eric Forsch and Economic Development Specialist Jerry Miller; ESS founder John Dondero; Sun Valley Economic Development Executive Director Harry Griffith; retired Apple executive Rick LeFaivre; Visit Sun Valley Director PR & Social Media Greg Randolph; and city staff.


Smith pg 1

Visit Sun Valley Report to Council

Visit Sun Valley will report to the City Council Monday on its marketing programs, including the upcoming winter campaign to attract tourists.


Building 2014 Building Up 25 Percent 

Ketchum issued 81 building permits for projects with a total value of $31,456,703 from Jan. 1 to Sept. 30, almost a 25 percent increase in value over the same period last year. For January to August 2013, Ketchum issued 75 permits for construction with a total value of $25,037,654. Impact fees were $60,705 last year and $275,686 this year.   


SUPER BAH Set for Oct. 29

Ketchum and other Blaine County communities will join for the Super Business After Hours gathering from 5-6:30 p.m. at the Sun Valley Air Club at Friedman Memorial Airport.


Join Wood River Valley Expo Nov. 5

Local businesses are invited to participate in a trade show, organized by the Hailey Chamber of Commerce, at the Community Campus in Hailey from 4:30-7 p.m.


Good News at Economic Summit 

There was good news at Sun Valley Economic Development's third annual economic summit on Oct. 8. Click the links for complete presentations.
  • Fly Sun Valley reported that 2014 winter enplanements were up 16 percent and summer/fall enplanements, 39 percent. There are now seasonal nonstop flights to five cities.
  • Sun Valley Resort is becoming "greener," with new snowmaking equipment making more than twice as much snow while using 90 percent less energy.
  • Sun Valley Company recycled 762,851 pounds of paper, glass, aluminum and plastic in 2013 and expects to exceed this amount in 2014, even without including building material recycled from the lodge reconstruction.
  • The golf course is using recycled water, reducing use of domestic water by 85 percent.
Mayor Nina Jonas
Deborra Bohner, board member, Ketchum Energy Advisory Commission and Environmental Resources Center
Ketchum Community Development Corporation Executive Director Jon Duval
City Council President Michael David

New Events Commission Members Nominated

Two nominations for the Ketchum Events Commission are expected to go to the City Council Monday. They are Tony Parkhill, supervisor, Snowsports School at Sun Valley Resort; Anna Svidgal, administrative and programmatic supervisor at The Community Library; and Suzanne Frick, Ketchum city administrator.

Looking at Right of Way Encroachment 
A request to use a portion of city right of way to improve access to a lot at the north end of East Avenue is spurring additional discussion on encroachment on city property throughout Ketchum. In reviewing the application, which goes before City Council Monday, staff discovered numerous encroachments that have not been approved. It plans to take a more detailed look at the situation throughout Ketchum.


New Hotel Applies for Tax Credits

Tax credits for the proposed Bald Mountain Lodge and a request for an extension on the development agreement will go before the City Council Monday.


Crosswalk Education Program Successful

Walking around town should be safer for pedestrians, thanks to the two-day community education program that Ketchum police completed yesterday. Officers monitored 119 crossings, and issued 30 verbal warnings to drivers who failed to stop.


BLM Decision on River Park Delayed

The proposed River Park at Sun Peak is on hold for approximately 12 months while the Bureau of Land Management conducts a baseline analysis of river flow and existing conditions from the Sawtooth National Recreation Area to Magic Reservoir.


Stop Sign Help Stop Poaching

Citizens Against Poaching and Idaho Fish and Game are working together to prosecute poachers who steal fish and game. Learn what you can do to help.


$2,500 Contribution to Skate Park

The Board Bin raised more than $2,500 for the city's Guy Coles Skate Park at a street party after the Trailing of the Sheep Parade last weekend.


Transportation Association Honors Ketchum

Ketchum has received the 2014 Community Transportation Association of Idaho Member Organization of the Year Award for its dedication to improving transportation services in Idaho.

You Can Vote Now

Early voting, an alternative to requesting an absentee ballot for those who will be out of town on the Nov. 4 election, is under way in the basement of the Blaine County Courthouse.


Enjoy Jazz

Sun Valley Jazz Festival runs through Sunday. These videos offer a glimpse of two of this year's featured musicians, Sue Palmer and Her Motel Swing Band and the Gonzalo Bergara Quartet. (See earlier story.)


Find Out Why You're 'Fed Up'

In honor of Food Day, the Local Food Alliance will sponsor two showings of the movie "Fed Up," which USA Today says "will change the way people think about eating." Showings will be Thursday, Oct. 23, at 7 p.m. at the Magic Lantern in Ketchum and Friday, Oct. 24, at 6 p.m. at the Community Campus in Hailey. 


What's Your Halloween Persona?

Ketchum's traditional Halloween party, Nightmare on Main Street, starts at 8 p.m. The street will be closed at 9 and prizes awarded at 10 for the best "male, female, creepiest, sexiest, group and overall" creations.


Halloween Safety Tips for Children 
Sgt. Brad Gelskey of the Ketchum Police Department will talk about Halloween safety at the Community Library Children's Hour on Saturday, Oct. 25, from 10-11 a.m. Goodies, too.

See Films About Women

Lunafest, a festival of films on women issues, will benefit Girls on the Run on Nov. 6 at 6 p.m. at the NexStage Theater.


City Council 
Attend the next City Council meeting at 5:30 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 20. City Council meetings are held on the first and third Mondays of each month in Ketchum City Hall. Click here to see the agenda and staff reports or scan the QR code.

Planning and Zoning Commission 
Planning and Zoning Commission meetings are held on the second and fourth Mondays of each month. The next P&Z meeting will be held at 5:30 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 27 in Ketchum City Hall. Click here for agendas and staff reports or scan the QR code.

Public Comment 
If you cannot attend the Council or P&Z meetings and have an opinion, please submit your comments via email to Your input and engagement is encouraged. All comments will be reviewed. 
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