Governor names March"Idaho Arts and Culture Month"!                                      Sun Valley Film Festival Photo                                                                                                                                                             March 13-16   
     City of Ketchum P.O. Box 2315
480 East Avenue N.
Ketchum, Idaho 83340
"Small Town, Big Life" 

Our hearts and
prayers are with Bowe.

March 13, 2014
A Message from Mayor Nina Jonas

The early spring is a reminder that we need adjust to changing conditions. For example, March is usually the favorite month for Andreas, my husband, to fish. Yet this year the Big Wood River is uncharacteristically muddy due to last summer's forest fire. So last weekend he put the energy that used to go into fishing into to a mountain bike ride at Craters of the Moon.


Just as he is making personal adjustments, I am making adjustments to changing conditions at city hall.


This week, Lisa Horowitz left her position as Ketchum's community and economic development director. Lisa's energy and capabilities will be missed; however, I see this change as an opportunity to reorganize this role. We will no longer have a Community and Economic Development Department or director. The planning and building divisions of the Community and Economic Development Department will become the Planning & Building Department with Joyce Allgaier, current planning manager, as the director.


The community and economic development elements will remain as responsibilities of all the city departments. Streets, parks, utilities, emergency services, administration, police and planning are all essential elements of community and economic development, and offer their own areas of expertise. The city administrator will coordinate these departments on any specific development issue. This more traditional organizational structure will streamline outcomes and provide efficient communications with the public and community organizations.


We wish Lisa well in her next undertaking and thank her for her professionalism, enthusiasm and love of our community.


Enjoy the coming season, Nina.
Meeting Information
City Council
Please attend the next City Council meeting at 5:30 p.m. on Monday, March 17.  The Mayor and City Council need to hear from you on your level of support for the proposed River Park at Sun Peak.  Submit your public comment if you cannot attend. You can also learn how the city is helping to bring art into the community.  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 packet.

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, March 10 in Ketchum City Hall.  Click here for agendas and meeting packets.

Public Comment 
If you cannot attend the meetings and have an opinion, please submit your comments via email to  Your input and engagement is encouraged.  All comments will be entered into public record and reviewed by the Mayor and Council.

Sun Valley Film Festival Opens Tonight

Idaho Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter and First Lady Lori Otter will open the Sun Valley Film Festival and introduce Arie Posin's "The Face of Love" tonight at 6:30 p.m. at the Sun Valley Opera House.


Now in its third year, the festival will offer films, workshops, coffee talks and parties today through Sunday at venues in Ketchum, Sun Valley and Hailey.  There are more than 50 features and short films, including three world premiers from festival partner National Geographic Channels.


There will be a special 20th anniversary screening tomorrow of Kevin Smith's landmark indie hit "Clerks," shot in black-and-white for $27,575 in the convenience and video stores where director Kevin Smith worked in real life.


Smith and frequent co-star Jason Mewes will be on hand for a post-screening Q&A, followed by the opening night party with Dinosaur Jr.'s J Mascis.


Smith also will be on hand later in the weekend for a Q&A following a free screening of his most recent film "Red State."


The Screenwriters Lab, one of the festival's signature events, will welcome Melisa Wallack and Craig Borten, the Academy Award-nominated co-screenwriters of "Dallas Buyers Club," to discuss their craft.  Morning coffee talks will offer insights by industry experts, and Work in Progress Workshops will give this year's filmmakers a chance to share their nearly completed films.


The complete schedule, along with film descriptions and trailers, can be found here. Individual film tickets, along with a variety of festival passes that include films, programs, special events, and parties, also are available online. 

The National Brotherhood of Skiers put their dancin' ski boots on and rocked Ketchum in another great week of celebration!  It was great having you back NBS! 
Poop Scoop Patrol. . . Because Somebody Has to Doo It!

Ah, spring!  With the receding snow comes evidence of our four-legged friends.  The Parks Division of the Ketchum Parks & Recreation Department has the distinguished honor of keeping Ketchum's public spaces clean and safe for the recreating public.  Aside from the glorious responsibilities of garbage pick-up and public restroom maintenance, Parks Division employees remove fully one ton of doggy defecation each month, year-round from Ketchum's parks, including BLM recreation areas to our north.  How do we do it?  A firm grip on one's self-esteem helps.  A healthy sense of humor as well as a direct sense of community pride goes a long way as well. . . after all, we live here too!  We also love that Ketchum loves dogs, but we couldn't do all this without your help!


The "dog rounds" are performed three times a week all year long.  That's about 312 staff hours or 1/6 of a full-time equivalent position!  Parks Division staffers visit about 40 poop scoop stations in and around Ketchum.  Stations are placed where need is greatest and as budget allows.  We spend $4,000 annually on biodegradable "poop mitts" for the public - that's about 30 cases a year at 1500 mitts per case.  Just in case you were wondering how many mitts it takes to remove twelve tons of doggy doo every year from Ketchum's parks, try 45,000!


About a decade ago, we found that providing the tools for people to act as responsible dog owners was far more effective than imposing unrealistic "no dogs allowed" rules.  While the system isn't perfect (How many times do you see a dog wandering around with no owner present?), it's a "ton" better each year.  So do your community a favor and use those opposable thumbs that your dog lacks - scoop the poop!  Contact Jennifer Smith, Director of Parks & Recreation with your comments.  

Watch for Locals in Weekend Paralympics

Ketchum's Jake Adicoff, who has been legally blind since birth, placed sixth in the 20-kilometer cross-country race with a time of 48:37:4. The 58-degree weather was so warm that he competed in short sleeves. "To finish sixth does a lot for me confidence-wise heading into the rest of the week," he said.


Jake was a Ketchum Parks & Recreation Department "park rat" as a youngster. He and guide Reid Pletcher, also of Ketchum, started skiing together in 2003 with the Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation (SVSEF). They will compete again Saturday in the freestyle relay and Sunday in the freestyle. Jake's parents and two brothers are in Sochi with him.


Last December Jake, guided by Reid, skied in the Alberta World Cup IMC Nordic Skiing competition in Canmore, Canada, taking seventh place in a 10k freestyle, eighth place in a 20k classic, and eighth in his first-ever biathlon.


Wood River Valley Paralympic skiers Andy Soule and Omar Bermejo also trained with the SVSEF.


With them in Sochi is Ketchum native Muffy Davis, who last month observed the anniversary of the ski accident that left her paralyzed with a party themed "25 Years of Rolling" in a wheelchair. Muffy, who has won Paralympic silver medals in skiing and gold medals in hand cycling, is ambassador and commentator on the Sochi games. Her mother, Ketchum's M.B. Davis, is keeping up with Muffy primarily through her Facebook page.


Portions of the Paralympic games are being broadcast on NBC and NBC Sports Network. A complete schedule of coverage can be found here

Ben Verge Gets His Own Olympic Medal
Ketchum's Ben Verge, coach to the U.S. Freeskiing Olympic team and former Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation alpine racer, is back home and smiling after two of his athletes, Maddie Bowman and David Wise, won gold medals in Sochi.

Maddie presented Ben with Order of Ikkos medallion, which Olympic victors may present to their coaches in recognition of their leadership and inspiration. 

Congratulations Ben!
Firefighters Win Award for Community Service

Fire Chief Mike Elle will recognize the International Association of Fire Fighters Local 4758 at Monday's City Council meeting as winner of the union's 2013 Media Awards for community service. There were more than 280 entries in the national competition.


Ketchum firefighters organized an 8/80/800 campaign in which eight firefighters volunteered for community service for a total of 800 hours over eight months.


Lt. Lara McLean, Local 4758 vice president, took her dog to the Community Library to read stories and teach fire safety to children, using her dog to teach them to "stop, drop and roll" in case of fire. The children's reaction was "an instant reward," she said. "We learned so much about the community through the campaign," Lara added. 


The Ketchum Fire Department has 11 full-time firefighters and 35 paid on-call firefighters. "I am proud of all of our firefighters for their commitment and dedication," said Fire Chief Mike Elle.


Fire Chief Mike Elle will recognize the recent success of Local 4758 as the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF)'s 2013 IAFF Media Award winner at the upcoming City Council Meeting Monday, March 17.  The local unit of professional firefighters was selected ahead of more than 280 other national entries for its extensive community service and public education efforts within Ketchum.
City Welcomes and Honors Mountain Rides' Board Members

Kristin Derrig was appointed on Monday, March 3 as Mountain Rides' newest board member. Derrig, co-owner of the Cellar Pub, looks forward to providing a restaurant and nightlife perspective to the board. "I want to see what capacity the buses could help with encouraging nighttime business in town, especially for our visitors," Derrig said.


While on the board, Derrig hopes to review the operational hours of public transportation to help solve parking issues, create safer options during winter months, and provide visitors with consistent access to restaurants and bars during weeknights, as well as weekends.


Derrig will fill the seat vacated by longstanding board member Peter Everett. Everett, who recently resigned from the board for health reasons, was recognized for his eight-year commitment and contributions at the transportation hub master plan presentation and at the most recent City Council Meeting.   


"His insights were invaluable in operating and expanding our system," Mountain Rides Executive Director Jason Miller said. "He will be missed for his sense of humor, magnanimous personality and his passion for making Mountain Rides as good as it could be."


The city thanks Everett for his commitment to improving public transportation in and around Ketchum and wishes him well in his recovery.

Wastewater Department Sets Energy Efficiency Goals

The city's Wastewater Department developed an energy efficiency initiative on Monday, March 10, intended to reduce electrical usage at the wastewater treatment facility by 10 percent over the next two years. 


The City of Ketchum, along with ten other cities in Idaho, is participating in a new program offered by Idaho Power called the Wastewater Energy Efficiency Cohort. The goal of the program is to help chart a course for long-term sustained energy savings. Energy monitoring equipment has been installed at the wastewater treatment plant and staff has been trained on energy-management software. With this energy management system, operators will be able to identify how changes in operations and capital improvements affect energy usage.  


The Idaho Power program includes a series of five full-day workshops over a two-year period. During the workshops, Idaho Power provides industry experts to speak about implementing best practices for wastewater treatment operations, and to help prioritize future capital improvements. Hands-on, small-group activities and peer-to-peer sharing of lessons learned from other wastewater treatment facilities are shared during the workshops.    


Click here to read the Wastewater Energy Initiative and contact Robyn Mattison, Public Works Director/City Engineer for more information. 

Fat Tire Biking a Growing Trend in Ketchum

A recent article published in The New York Times featuring Ketchum's own Chris Estrem and Tory Canfield, discussed the growing trend of fat tire biking. While these bikes may look more like a motorcycle, fat tire mountain bikes are made for pedaling on almost any kind of terrain, including snow. In Ketchum and the surrounding areas, this all-season, all-terrain sport is a means for cyclists and recreationalists to stay in the saddle through the winter months.


Canfield founded the Fat Bike Advocacy Group, a biking group that promotes snow riding in  Ketchum, Hailey, Sun Valley and the Sawtooth National Recreation Area (SNRA). The group reports trail conditions and plans group rides around the Wood River Valley and SNRA. Fat bike riding is ideal for winters like the one we are having. Fat bikes are perfect for riding on terrain partially covered in snow or trails with varying depths of snow. And, it's easy to learn. If you can ride a bike, you can ride a fat bike.


Canfield is quoted in The Times article as saying "For me, fat biking on snow creates a sense of ethereal floatiness that conjures up the sensation of powder skiing. As soon as your tire rolls forward, your mouth turns up into a big, fat grin. It is nothing short of fun."    


The Fat Bike Advocacy Group has been working with the Wood River Bike Coalition, Blaine County Recreation District (BCRD), United States Forest Service and the City of Ketchum to create places to ride. Check out the new Durrance Demo Loop; a new mixed-use trail geared toward fat bikes, skiers and dogs and created by the SNRA and BCRD.

Percent for Art

The City Council will consider devoting a greater percentage of public capital improvement budgets to the Ketchum Arts Commission (KAC) at its meeting on Monday, March 17.


The figure would go from 1.33 percent to 5 percent under the proposed Ordinance 115. The higher figure would make possible larger projects such as outfitting a park with artist-designed playground equipment, adding artistic elements to bicycle paths and lanes or bus stops, paying artists for their contributions to city projects, creating gateway arts elements for the city and funding arts projects that can draw a national audience.


"The 5 percent exemplifies the city's recognition that the projects created by the arts commission offer an important contribution to the vitality of the city both experientially and economically," said Ketchum Arts Commission member, Claudia McCain. "It is a documented fact that the cultural tourist stays longer and spends more."


The requirement applies only to city-funded projects and does not affect private development. The Percent for Art Program was established in 2011.


Comments on the proposed ordinance may be sent to

Around Town
Ketchum Art Gallery Walk
The Sun Valley Gallery Association will be hosting a guided Ketchum art gallery walk on Friday, March 14.  Click here for details.

Training for Intervention Procedures (TIPS)
The Ketchum Police Department offers training to address the laws and dangers of over-service of alcohol, selling to minors and drinking and driving.  The class will be held on Friday, March 14 from 10-3 pm at Ketchum City Hall.  Click here  for details or contact Chief Steve Harkins.

ANITA - Speaking Truth to Power
ANITA, featured at the recent Family of Woman Film Festival opens on March 21 in theaters across the country.  Watch the trailer here and visit their Facebook page.  
KDPI Radio - "For A Cause"  
Tune in to KDPI 89.3 FM to hear from Mayor Jonas.  The half-hour program is held on Tuesday's following Council meetings from 12-12:30 pm.  **Next week's show will be on Thursday, March 20 at noon.** Listen live at 89.3 or visit
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480 East Ave. N.
P.O. Box 2315
Ketchum, ID 83340
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