7/9/2013 2:25:00 PM Editorial- Hard work ahead if Beaver Creek wants to move forward
For many years, one of the hallmarks of the Beaver Creek area has been community camaraderie. That's not to say there are not political fights - there are, and they can be foul - but many have always had the improvement of the area as the center of their efforts.
Those efforts brought the community two lovely parks, beneficial extracurricular programs at the school and even a much sounder bridge. Organizations like the Kiwanis, the Women's Civic Club and the Garden Club, sharing many members, have kept the community striving and moving forward. Their example and leadership gave Beaver Creek a great pride in place.
So it has been dispiriting to watch the huge divisions that have opened up in the wake of the Kala Pearson case. Not that grumblings weren't already there -- the crumbling foundation of the regional council was proof of that. But this situation has caused a rift that, when compounded by egos, gossip, justifications, dismissiveness, backbiting and name-calling, may never be healed again. The move forward has stalled out.
Pearson herself recognizes that ugly aspect of the fallout from her case. That reputation of community camaraderie has been trodden under foot, and the words being exchanged by residents are doing nothing to stop it.
That is a problem for Beaver Creek, not just in relationships but also in how the community is perceived by potential investors.
What Beaver Creek needs is investors who have faith in the community's amity and good deeds. The way things are now, even the temptation of the water rights belonging to the golf course will not be enough to bring a reliable entity to the community to take on some of the financial burden.
Residents were financially and emotionally wounded, and that should not be trivialized. Others are defensive over what they accomplished in gaining the Ranch House Restaurant and the golf course before it all unraveled, work that does not deserve indifference either. Do-gooders who have been innocent bystanders are now shrinking away from the scene, and the loss of their talents is obvious.
Lots of great work has been done in the Beaver Creek area over the years. Even more difficult work lays ahead if residents are to re-establish their reputation and really move forward again.