Colorado

EMMA: A Digital Mountain Assistant at your Fingertips

THE SIRI OF THE SLOPES

Emma, The Epic Mountain Assistant is basically the Siri of the slopes. Emma offers guests an unprecedented breadth of information tailored to each resort. Emma’s got you covered on topics such as snow conditions and lift line wait times, parking and in-resort wayfinding, ski school, lift tickets and equipment rental options, on- and off-mountain dining and activities recommendations and more. Using artificial intelligence and natural language processing, Emma has the ability to answer a wide range of questions in real time through text messages.

CLICK HERE to become more acquainted with EMMA.

EAGLE: Colorado's most underrated community

Showdown Town in Eagle’s town park | A free concert series every Thursday in the Summer

Showdown Town in Eagle’s town park | A free concert series every Thursday in the Summer

A website called House Method recently named the Town of Eagle the most underrated community in all of Colorado. House Method describes itself as a resource to help people "create the home you imagine." That mission includes everything from product reviews to renovation tips and an annual listing of the most underrated towns in America.

"We put out a national query for nominations and polled our editorial teams," said Emily McCrary Ruiz-Esparaza. "All in all, we evaluated about 500 towns to create this list."

House Method was looking for towns that featured the following:

Commerce: A place that could supply good jobs for residents.

Art: A place with an interesting art scene or rich cultural history.

Beauty: A lovely place where people would want to live and visit because of its scenery.

Surprise: Lots of places meet the other criteria, but House Method wanted to uncover communities that had something surprising about them based on their location or history.

"And finally, we wanted to find places that most of the population hadn't heard of," said Ruiz-Esparaza. "You'll find some exceptions, but these are cities that get publicity for only one event (like Park City's famous Sundance festival) or are often overlooked for their more famous neighbors."


EAGLE'S PRESS

House Method writes "Located along the Eagle River, and just minutes from the world-class resorts of Vail and Beaver Creek, Eagle is the perfect destination for the outdoor enthusiast."

Calling the community a "hidden Colorado gem," House Method touted Eagle's "variety of hiking trails, mountain biking, hunting and trail running. Fishing is also extremely popular in Eagle and is considered a year-round sport. While fishing at Brush Creek, Sylvan Lake or Nolan Lake, you'll get to enjoy vast meadows and mountain peaks as your backdrop."

On the economic front, House Method shared the following. "Eagle has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the country — just 2.1 percent."


ALL ABOUT COMMUNITY

When she talks about Eagle, Kensinger targets that "surprise" factor the House Method cited.

"It's hard to find the quality of a little town like Eagle. The beauty and the people are really what makes it so special."

After graduating from Eagle Valley High School in 1975, Kensinger has lived in Denver, Grand Junction, the Bay Area of California, Maine, Colorado Springs and Monument.

"Eagle is the best of all those places," she said. "I had forgotten how truly beautiful it is here."

Kensinger's affection for the community isn't unique and she recently reached out to a number of like-minded neighbors to form a new group called Friends of Eagle.

"Our mission is to build community in the town of Eagle," she said. "We are trying to meld everyone together in this great little town and we want to have fun doing it."

The group's first event was a rousing success — the Our Community Table dinner celebrated in late August. Eagle residents were invited to share a meal with their neighbors at tables set up the length of Broadway, Eagle's main street. Everyone was asked to bring and share their own food and the event did not seek out sponsors but it did ask for donations to cover the cost of renting and setting up the tables. "Our donors were so gracious. We get amounts ranging from $25 to $500," Kensinger said.

"We were hoping to get 300 to 400 people. We ended up with between 800 and 900 people," Kensinger said. "We were just over the moon."

That turnout is indicative of the community, she said.

"People here want to get together. They want to know the history of the town and contribute."

SOURCE: Vail Daily

How will the new tax bill affect homeowners?

On December 20, 2017 Congress passed H.R.1, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which has now received the President's signature and took effect on January 1, 2018. There are many intricacies to the new bill to explore, but there are a few major takeaways on how it will affect homeowners over the next seven years. 

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Impact on home sales, the real estate market, and mortgage financing:

  • The bill keeps the option to exclude up to $500K of gain on the sale of a primary residence.
  • The bill keeps business interest deductions for real estate, plus Section 1031 like-kind exchanges for real property, which will ensure that the costs of home financing remains affordable and real estate activity remains a vibrant part of the economy.
  • The bill keeps the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) and the tax-exempt status for private activity bonds (PABs), tow rules that will help preserve options for affordable multi-family housing and consumer access to affordable mortgage credit. 

I found a great article from the National Law Review with a comprehensive and user-friendly breakdown of other highlights from this new bill -> check it out HERE.

 

Turkey with a side of POWDER

If I had to dream up the perfect weather scenario in Vail, Colorado I would have 75 degree blue bird sunny days from May 1st – October 31st and then winter would roll in with force and dump light, fluffy, champagne powder over our beautiful valley. We might be a few weeks late on my dream but our good friend Ullr is finally making his appearance just in time for the season opener!

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According to our pal Joel Gatz from opensnow.com, snow will begin falling on Thanksgiving night and will continue to pick up over the next 48 hours. It sounds like the most intense segment of the storm will be on Friday between 1PM and 8PM with snowfall rates of 1-2 inches per hour! Joel is predicting we will wake up to 6-12 inches of powder on Saturday morning. Just remember, it is still VERY early in the season so don’t roam too far to find those powder stashes, it is going to be boney out there.

For the most accurate and up-to-date mountain forecast and powder finder visit opensnow.com