City of Ketchum
P.O. Box 2315
480 East Avenue N.
Ketchum, Idaho 83340
"Small Town, Big Life"

Inform. Celebrate. Involve.
July 17, 2017
In This Issue
The real value to supporting the arts and recreation

Nina I attended an event recently that brought together two things that energize me personally and as your mayor: The arts and recreation.

These two passions merged at the "Creating for Skating" fundraiser that raised money to help pay for the planned expansion of the Guy Coles skate park. Organizers auctioned off more than 80 one-of-a-kind skateboard decks designed, each by local artists, and raised more than $9,000.

The work by the artists was terrific. Some of the boards were hand-painted, while others featured collage, photography or wood burning techniques. I even bought one myself.

First, a shout out of thanks to Council President Jim Slanetz for his role in organizing and hosting the auction at his skateboard shop, the Board Bin. Kudos as well to the artists whose creative energy and generosity made the fundraiser possible.

Also, a special thanks to the anonymous donor who this week wrote a check for $5,000 to help with the skate park project.

What I found so inspiring is the support that was on full display for the arts community and the interest in improving our city's recreational resources.  I believe support for the arts and recreation is what makes our city strong, vibrant and appealing, not just for those who call this home but for those searching for a place to move and start a business or relocate a company.

It's no secret anymore that parents, CEOs and people of all ages engage in comparison shopping when planning a move to a new city. Studies show that the quality of life in a city--characteristics like access to public transportation, recreation, vibrant downtowns and an appreciation for the arts--rank highly in that decision-making matrix.

This is exactly why I believe it's important for the city to continue pursuing public and private investment in projects like making the skate park bigger and better. Partnering with the Ketchum Urban Renewal Agency, the city is committed to spending $100,000 on the project.

It's the motivation behind the city's decision to invest $280,000 to reconstruct new tennis courts at Atkinson Park, which opened for players earlier this month.

It underscores why I support allocating money in the budget to support the Ketchum Arts Commission, which this summer is marking the 10th anniversary of its Art on Fourth exhibitions.

Here is another interesting fact about the impact of the arts, not just in Ketchum but throughout the Wood River Valley: A new study calculates that the nonprofit arts and culture industry generates $29.3 million annually in economic activity in the valley.

The findings are part of a broader study by Americans for the Arts and you can read more about it in this newsletter.

The takeaway for me, however, is that investments in the arts, recreation and improving our quality of life pay dividends on so many levels.

On a final note, for anyone who missed the skate park fundraiser, Councilman Slanetz informs me that more than dozen skateboard decks are still available at his shop.


Q. I will be visiting your area to view the solar eclipse on August 21. Where can I find a great viewing area and a place to stay?

A. Thank you for choosing Ketchum to view this magnificent event! We're excited at the opportunity to show so many new visitors all that our community has to offer. The cities of Ketchum and Sun Valley are holding an event on Sun Valley Road, between the two cities, at Festival Meadow. This is a free public event where you will find local food and drink, children's activities, a presentation by an astronomer, music and a great view of the eclipse itself. As for lodging, places are definitely booking up, but you should consider contacting Visit Sun Valley.

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.
Stay involved in your community. Included here are links to the Monday, July 17, Council agenda and Council meeting information. The meeting will begin at 5:30 p.m. At this meeting, Council will consider the approval of the Skate Park Dreamland project at the Guy Coles Skatepark and a letter of interest to the KURA for the City to accept the 491 Sun Valley Road building that houses Starbucks and the Visitor Center. There will be discussion on the direction of the parking lot project on Washington Avenue between First and Second streets. The budget will be adopted and the first reading of the appropriation ordinance will be held.

It is the responsibility of the City to inform the public and gain public input. We encourage you to provide the City with your opinion and comments by attending Monday's meeting at 5:30 p.m. in Ketchum City Hall, 480 East Ave. N., or by sending an email to

As Mayor Jonas addressed in the opening of this newsletter, the arts are an important and highly valued part of our community. The City of Ketchum is deeply enriched by the arts and proud of our artists and the many ways they contribute to our quality of life.

Peter Hazel -  The Hatch 
This year, our arts community has been particularly busy, with multiple events still set to occur this summer alone:
  • Art
    Rudi Broschofsky - Stampede
    The annual art show hosted by the Sun Valley Center for the Arts, which will be taking place next month at Atkinson Park.
  • The 10th anniversary of Art on Fourth, the City's summer sculpture exhibition. Three-dimensional artwork is displayed outdoors along the Fourth Street Heritage Corridor each year between May and October.
  • The 4th anniversary of Art in City Hall. This year's art commemorates the 60th anniversary of Wagon Days. Previous exhibits have featured encaustic art, textile art, and photography.
  • Cover Art, art-covered utility boxes displayed throughout the community.
  • StreetArt, manhole covers adorned with designs from local artists.
Additionally, our community remains supportive of the arts, as demonstrated by several current initiatives, including:
  • Mayor Jonas has written a letter to be sent to President Trump, noting the City of Ketchum's strong support of the arts.
  • A grant awarded to the City by the Idaho Commission on the Arts (ICA) for the July 14 performance of Idaho Dance Theater. The ICA also provides postcards that can be used to acknowledge their contribution to the state of Idaho that can then be sent to legislators.
Last but not least, we're excited to share research that shows the economic impact that the arts bring to the Wood River Valley. A recent survey by Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 showed that nonprofit arts and cultural organizations (and their audiences) in the Wood River Valley supported 891 full-time equivalent jobs, paid over $15.5 in household income to residents, and generated $705,000 to local government in the fiscal year 2015 alone. Click on the links to access more information.
Philip Tsiaras - Hands 
While these economic numbers are impressive, the arts and the arts community add so much more to our community. They enrich us intellectually, emotionally, and socially; they contribute to the physical beauty of our city; and they help inspire and engage children and adults alike.
We encourage Ketchum residents and visitors to engage with the multiple arts-based and arts-supporting events and initiatives taking place over the next few months-and beyond. Pick up an arts brochure at Ketchum City Hall or the Visitor Center to help you locate art pieces in town. 

Parking The City of Ketchum and the Ketchum Urban Renewal Agency are moving forward together on a plan to help solve the city's downtown parking puzzle.

On July 17, the City Council will discuss a joint project that would create up to 67 paid parking spaces on a parcel along Washington Avenue on the southwest side of town.

The city owns half of the space and currently has 34 parking spaces at the corner of Washington Ave. and Second St. The KURA parcel is at the corner of Washington Ave. and First St., which had been leased to contractors during construction of the new Limelight Hotel.

Mayor Nina Jonas said the proposal fits with the city's overall parking strategy approved by the Council in December. If given the green light, the project would be the first major step toward achieving the goals set out in that parking plan.

The new lot will shift long-term employee parking to other areas and add short-term parking for customers in the downtown's retail and restaurant core.

The proposal calls for repaving both lots and installing paid parking kiosks and other equipment. The KURA has agreed to contribute $75,000 toward the project.

Click here for more information on the City's parking strategy.

Dog As summer heats up, stay mindful of city rules on hot dogs and idling vehicles. With the temperatures projected for the upper 80s this weekend, now seems like an appropriate time to remind residents about some important local ordinances that take on more significance in the summer season.

Every summer, the media is filled with stories about dogs that die of heat exposure after being left inside vehicles, even in cases when drivers think they're leaving their car or truck for just a few minutes.

Dog It's important to keep in mind that temperatures inside cars and trucks rise rapidly during summer months, even with windows open. In fact, studies show the temperature inside a vehicle can rise by 20 degrees in just 10 minutes.

Two years ago, the City Council adopted an ordinance that prohibits unattended animals from being left in vehicles in dangerous conditions, defining it as a "form of cruelty.

The ordinance also imposes a $100 fine for first offenders and gives law enforcement permission to enter a vehicle to rescue the animals.

Hot summer days are also problematic for motorists inclined to idle their car, truck or RV. Not only does idling waste fuel, but the emissions from idling vehicles simply compounds air quality problems, especially during the summer when air quality tends to decline.

Idling To protect the environment, the city council passed an ordinance in 2009 that still stands and is enforced today. Under the ordinance, first-time offenders who leave their vehicle idling for less than three minutes will get a warning. But a second offense can result in a $25 citation, with the penalty doubling for subsequent violations.

Finally, Ketchum is also a smoke-free city. That means inside city limits, smoking is prohibited in all enclosed public places, enclosed places of employment and public property.

Smoking is also barred within 20 feet of all designated bus stops, school property and within any designated special event zone, unless a designated and delineated smoking area is spelled out and approved in a permit.

LOT Climbs at Start of Summer 
Eclipse Logo for Businesses 
The City of Ketchum has made a special logo, designed specifically to celebrate and promote next month's solar eclipse, available free to Ketchum and Sun Valley business owners and retailers interested in marketing the rare event. Contact to obtain the files for use in your souvenir merchandising.
Parking Workshop Planned 
On Wednesday, July 19, 2017, a public workshop will be held to discuss the City's off-street parking ordinance. The meeting will take place a Ketchum City Hall beginning at 3:30 p.m.

PUC Sets Public Hearing 
The Idaho Public Utilities Commission has scheduled a public hearing regarding Idaho Power Company's proposal to construct a new transmission line in the Wood River Valley. The hearing is set for Wednesday, July 26, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Ketchum City Hall. More information on the meeting can be accessed here.

Special City Council Meeting 
The City Council meeting scheduled for August 21, 2017 has been changed to Thursday, August 17, 2017. The meeting will take place at Ketchum City Hall beginning at 5:30 p.m. The date and time of this meeting was changed from that sent out on the tax assessment notice.

Looking for a Job? 
The City is seeking a a Maintenance Worker for the Wastewater Division. This is a full-time position with benefits and requires operation of a variety of light- and heavy-duty equipment along with miscellaneous labor duties for operation and maintenance of a wastewater treatment facility. Visit for more information. Submittal deadline: July 28, 2017. 
City Council 
Attend the next City Council meeting at 5:30 p.m. on Monday, July 17. City Council meetings are held on the first and third Monday 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 
Attend the next Planning and Zoning Commission meeting at 5:30 p.m. on Monday, August 14. P&Z meetings are held on the second Monday of each month 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 would like to express an opinion, please submit your comments via email to Your input and engagement is encouraged. All comments will be reviewed. 
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