Adventure June 4, 2014

Local Buzz





Famous 40-Somethings [pg. 2]
Top 40 SV Bucket List [pg. 3]
Passing the Torch [pg. 4]
A Day in the Life [pg. 5]



Famous 40-Somethings

Notable Businesses that Turned 40 This Year



In 1974 . . .

Gas cost $0.53/ gallon.

Average cost of a new car was $3,750.

Cost of a ski lift ticket at Sun Valley was $30.

The average cost of a pint of beer was $1.25.

The average household income was $11,197.

Life expectancy for Americans was only 72 years (It’s almost 79 now!).

“The Sting” won the Oscar for Best Picture.

“Killing Me Softly With His Song” by Roberta Flack won the Grammy for Best Song of the Year.

 “Little House on the Prairie” and “Happy Days” were the most popular TV shows.

Stephen King’s first hit book “Carrie” was published.

Muhammad Ali defeated George Foreman at the “Rumble in the Jungle” in Zaire.
 “Gravity’s Rainbow” by Thomas Pynchon won the National Book Award.












Top 40 SV Bucket List

Summertime Must-Dos!


Pioneer Cabin photo by Julie Molema

1. Go for a Hike!  The hiking around Sun Valley is stunning and seemingly endless. But one of our staff favorites is the Pioneer Cabin. Nestled 9,400-feet high in the Pioneer Mountains, the cabin was originally built in 1939 as part of Sun Valley’s backcountry hut system.


2. Ride the Pump Track! Both Ketchum and Hailey offer free dirt pump tracks, which are fun for kids of any age.


3. Dig in the Dirt! Go to Sun Valley Garden Center or the Sawtooth Botanical Garden and get inspired!


4. Play a Round of Golf at High Elevation! Drives go a lot further here a mile or so above sea level and the Valley offers several world–class courses!


5. Enjoy a fresh, locally brewed beer! The Sawtooth Brewery in Ketchum and the Sun Valley Brewery in Hailey both serve up fresh local brews!


Julie Molema of JAM Designs at the Wood River Farmers' Market

6. Eat, drink and buy local crafts! The weekly Farmers’ Markets in Ketchum (Tuesdays) and Hailey (Thursdays) are perfect places to enjoy local food and crafts like our favorites: Calle 75 Street Tacos and JAM Designs!


7. Ice skate Under A summer Sky! You can either skate yourself, or catch Olympians like Gracie Gold, Johnny Weir or Meryl Davis and Charlie White perform at the world-famous Sun Valley Ice Shows.


Galena Lodge lunch. Photo by Julie Molema



8. Visit Historic Galena Lodge! 23-miles north of Sun Valley you can find Galena Lodge. It’s a great spot for a hike, bike ride or a fabulous lunch like a Lava Lake Lamb Burger!



photo: olga



9. Stop by a few of Ernest Hemingway’s Old Haunts! Ketchum is littered with places “Papa” loved to hang out. So it’s easy to retrace his steps to the bars at Michel’s Christiania or the Alpine Club (now Whiskey Jacques’) or to enjoy a “Hemingway’s Special Daiquiri” at The Duchin Room. His memorial on Trail Creek, dedicated in 1966, is also worth a visit.







10. Go for a swim! Lakes, rivers and public pools polka dot the local landscape, especially over the pass in the Sawtooth Valley where it’s always fun to waterski at Alturas Lake or rent a sailboat on Redfish Lake.


11. Have a schooner of beer! Grumpy’s is more than just a beer and burger bar, it’s an institution in Ketchum. Popular with everyone from working class locals to the biggest stars on the planet, no summer is complete without a schooner—or several—on the deck of Grumpy’s!


12. Read a Great Book! Chapter One and Iconoclast bookstores in Ketchum have terrific selections and our local libraries are top notch!


13. Catch a Free Concert!Ketch’em Alive” offers live music each Tuesday; “Wicked Wednesday’s” at The Spud is the place to be in Hailey; and “Mahoney’s Baloney” serves up live music Thursday nights in Bellevue.

Tennis at Atkinsons' Park in Ketchum



14.  Play Tennis! Sun Valley has a long and impressive history of high-quality tennis. Atkinson Park in Ketchum and Wood River High in Hailey have quality courts.






15. Shop till you drop! Lacking any chain stores, the Valley is loaded with shops that offer one-of-a-kind boutique and intimate shopping experiences, sure to please any shopper.




16. Have a Glass—or several—of Idaho Wine! The Wine Company in Ketchum and diVine Wine Bar in Hailey offer large Gem State wine selections! And Frenchman’s Gulch even produces wine in Ketchum and offers wine tastings!





Bowl of Soul at Java. photo by Travis Bartlett




17. Experience the ritual Have a Bowl of Soul at Java! Their Mexican chocolate mocha topped with fresh whipped cream has a cult following for a reason!




18. Go Rafting! The famous Middle Fork “River of No Return,” and even day trips on the Main Salmon River, are amazing experiences!


Sun Valley gondola. photo by Heather Linhart Coulthard




19. Dine at 7,700 feet! Take the gondola more than halfway up Bald Mountain for a remarkable meal at the historic Roundhouse, the octagonal restaurant has been serving patrons since 1940.





20. Watch a Parade! We love our parades around here, and there’s lots of ‘em! Between Hailey’s popular 4th of July Parade and the Big Hitch Parade (part of Ketchum’s annual Wagon Days celebration and one of the nation’s longest non-motorized parades), and lots in between, summers in Sun Valley are marked by parades.


21. Have a Cowboy Cut! Nothing beats a cut of Prime Rib at Ketchum’s world-famous Pioneer Saloon. Where time seems to almost stand still, especially at the start of each ski season when “Pio Days” watches prices drop back to what they were in the 1970s!


22. Enjoy an Ice Cream! Toni’s and Yellow Belly both create mouthwatering local ice cream flavors like Toasted Coconut and Real Mint Chocolate Chip.

23. Watch a rodeo! Catch cowboys and cowgirls kicking up their heels at the Hailey Rodeo Grounds!


24. Have a pastry or some Wienerschnitzel at the Konditorei! Influenced by Sun Valley’s strong European history, the Konditorei offers authentic German and Austrian fare.


25. Mountain Bike Baldy! The lift-assisted singletrack and new Flow Trails on Baldy add to Sun Valley’s outstanding mountain biking options.


26. Go for a Motocross Ride! Numerous local canyons and the track in Croy Canyon west of Hailey offer terrific dirt bike riding.

27. Experience the Milky Way! Explore constellations under our stunning night sky or take the kids on a guided astrological campout with the Environmental Resource Center!


28. Visit the Sawtooth Fish Hatchery! Learn about the amazing 900-mile journey salmon and steelhead make from the sea to the heart of Idaho.


29. Fly Sun Valley! Paraglide off Baldy and high above Ketchum with Fly Sun Valley.


30. Fly Fish Silver Creek, the Big Wood or Big Lost rivers! Pick up a copy of “Angling Around Sun Valley” or hit up a local tackle shop like Ketchum’s Silver Creek Outfitters or Sturtos in Hailey to find out how to hook `em!


31. Go to the Symphony! Sun Valley summers are not complete without at least one visit to the largest free-admission publicly funded symphony in the country.


32. Play Mini-Golf! Sun Valley offers a putt-putt course you can play with the kids, or you can simply enjoy a Bloody Mary and lunch at the Club House while the youngsters play a round.


33. Take a day trip to Stanley! A little over an hour away, Stanley is nestled alongside the Salmon River and offers stunning views and easy access to the Sawtooth Mountains. The tasty treats from the Stanley Bakery are worth the drive alone!


34. Partake in a Gallery Walk! Sun Valley Gallery Association’s exceptionally popular, free monthly gallery walks (including two in August!) are wine-friendly events and a big part of why we’ve been named one of the Best Small Art Towns in the nation.


35. Take a Kid Fishing! Family put-and-take ponds can be found at Dollar Lake, Lake Creek or Hayspur Hatchery!


36. Canoe the Silver Creek Preserve! The gin-clear, trout-filled waters of Silver Creek are ideal for casual canoe trips, especially for bird watchers and photographers.


Liberty Theater Company of Fools. photo by Julie Molema




37. Catch a play at Ketchum’s nexStage Theater and the Liberty Theatre in Hailey offer world-class quality performances throughout the summer.







38. Soak Under the Stars. Frenchman’s Hot Springs, just west of Ketchum, are one of several great local hot spring options.


39. Ride a Horse! There are loads of riding options around these parts, but it’s tough to top trotting along Dollar Mountain’s wildflower-filled trails!


40. Roast Marshmallows over a Campfire! Our area is overrun by spectacular spots to camp and enjoy Idaho’s breathtaking wilderness so get out there!





Passing the Torch

New Owners Bring Life to Local Businesses


Sales of small businesses across the nation rose by 50% last year. It’s a trend that not only signals growth in the U.S. economy, but one that can also be found right here in the Wood River Valley. 

Rob Santa was an owner of Sturtevants for 30 years. He began as an employee, then became partner, sole owner and, in 2013, sold the business and retired. His philosophy has always been that “at the end of a cycle of ownership, it’s best if employees rise from within to take over.” When the time came, Santa sold to longtime employee, Olin Glenne, who then turned and sold Sturtos-Hailey to another longtime employee, Jeff Davis, thus separating the Hailey and Ketchum markets, and creating two new small business owners. Rob’s children had been offered a chance to own Sturtos, but they chose other paths. For the Witmer family, it’s been a different story.

Duffy Witmer was a partner at the Pioneer Saloon for nine years before he and his wife, Sheila, became the sole owners in 1986. They then purchased The Kneadery in 2002 with the full intention of eventually handing both businesses off to their three children, who work at the restaurants and have been in training for the roles of small business ownership their whole lives. Since longtime employees have years of experience and inside knowledge that usually proves to be invaluable when taking over the reins, the future looks promising for both the “Pio” and The Kneadery.

Stepping into a stable business with a successful track record is also very appealing. Pete Prekeges bought in to Grumpy’s in 1998, eventually buying out his partner in 2010. “I bought the business because I liked their legacy and business plan, so what I try to do is not screw up what they have going, and improve where I can their efficiency and service,” Pete said. He also had his eye on the Silver Dollar in Bellevue as a chance to buy property with a good business on it that could pay the mortgage. Every time he saw the owner, Pete would ask to be considered when she was ready to sell. Eventually she took him up on his offer and the rest is history. While many established businesses can benefit from the ideas of new owners, others just plain won’t survive unless someone else steps in and breathes some new life into them.

Fly Sun Valley was slow to take off. Chuck Smith became a partner of the only fully insured and permitted paragliding operation in Sun Valley in 2000 and soon became sole owner when his partner, who founded the company in 1999, decided to focus his attention elsewhere. Chuck applied the lessons he’d learned at Aspen Paragliding to the local small business and Fly Sun Valley has literally soared to new heights ever since.

In 2011, Sun Valley Mustard’s owner threatened to close its doors if it was not sold. Joshua Wells had been a fan of the product for years and found this unacceptable. He made the purchase despite lacking expertise in the industry. Thanks to Joshua’s passion for food and determination to learn, Sun Valley Mustard is now celebrating 30 years and going strong.

New owners are the reason all these local small businesses are healthy and thriving. Changing ownership is a critical part of the legacy of many small businesses. A successor may be groomed for years, or may simply knock on the door at the right time. Regardless of the reason for passing the reins, new owners often bring new ideas and new life to healthy, or even struggling, businesses—and those of us who love the Wood River Valley are happy they do.

Clockwise photos: courtesy Sturtos Hailey / courtesy the Witmer Family / Travis Bartlett / courtesy Sun Valley Mustard / Travis Bartlett / courtesy Fly Sun Valley

A Day in the Life: Kaz Thea

Locals Share Their Perfect Sun Valley Days


Photo by Max Monahan.

SVM: What is your Sun Valley story? How did you end up here?
KAZ: I was working in Walla Walla, Washington, as a wildlife biologist when I met my now-husband, Kurt Nelson. He moved to the Valley in the early ’90s and we kept in touch for years as friends. After that, I took a job in Bend for a bit and then decided to make the move here to be with him and find a job. I worked for Alliance for the Wild Rockies, (a conservation organization), for a bit and have pieced together jobs ever since. I read this quote once by Margaret Mead that moved me: “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” It sums up how I feel about change, and making a difference.

SVM: What does your perfect Sun Valley
day start with?
KAZ: A hike up Carbonate or a bike ride out one of the Croy Creek trails—or waking up in the outdoors sipping coffee, chatting with family and friends and discussing what the day will bring. You can usually find us camping with friends on weekends throughout the summer. 

SVM: What would your day not be complete without?
KAZ: A hike or bike ride somewhere in the Valley on one of the area’s numerous trails.

SVM: Where’s your favorite place for lunch?
KAZ: NourishMe or Glow. Both places have so many amazing fresh-food options and most of their products come directly from some of the local vendors at the Hailey or Ketchum Farmers’ Market, or Idaho’s Bounty.

SVM: What about dinner?
KAZ: I usually eat dinner at home with my family. I am always preparing lots of fresh dishes from produce bought at the markets throughout the summer.  Nothing like a fresh tomato. I eat a lot of salad of every variety you can think of in the summer.  If we do go out, we love to go to the Power House for the social aspect. They have a great deck outside, awesome selection of beers, excellent food, much of which is local and homemade, especially their fries and ketchup, but I really enjoy the oat burgers with goat cheese and salad.  It’s always a cool scene at the Power House.

SVM: What makes Sun Valley so special?
KAZ: The community and the resources we have here. The community support of this place is absolutely incredible. I love the Farmers’ Market and being involved in community programs and events. This is a great place to raise a family.

SVM: Where is your favorite breakfast spot?
KAZ: Sitting on my back deck eating fresh eggs and toast from the market and sipping a cup of coffee, planning the day.

SVM: Where do you like to camp?
KAZ: We start camping as soon as the weather gets warm and dry and start close to home (Corral Creek, Baker Creek) and work our way further north as the temperature gets warmer and camp many weekends in the Sawtooths. Lots of the camping is car camping at one of the lakes (Alturas, Redfish, Stanley), but we also backpack. We almost always go on a river trip on the Main Salmon one time in the summer with a group of friends.

SVM: What do you do in the afternoon?
KAZ: I love digging in my garden in the late afternoon after work.  We usually have dinner late because we are busy recreating or working in our yard until late in the day. 

SVM: Who do you want to spend time with?
KAZ: My husband and son in the Boulder-White Cloud or Sawtooth mountains, hiking one of the many area trails or at one of the Sawtooth Lakes on our stand up paddle board with our dog Banjo along for the ride. 




A Day in the Life: Terry Ring


Photo by Kevin Syms.

SVM: How does your perfect day begin?
Terry: It depends on the time of year. There are many perfect days in Sun Valley. You just have to decide to make today one of them. I do love to work, though. I love the interactions with people and I really enjoy the role I get to play in helping people enjoy the Sun Valley lifestyle. But if I’m not working in the summer, I love getting up early, having a cup of coffee and reading The New York Times on my iPad.

SVM: What’s next?
Terry: A hike with the dogs and then some fishing. I love small, headwater fishing where there is always a sense of discovery around every turn. And I love to have a fish take a dry fly. It still always makes me giggle. I even enjoy a refusal. When something is slightly wrong it becomes a little bit of a game of chess, trying to figure out how to fool a fish that doesn’t want to be fooled.

SVM: Do you have a favorite place to fish?
Terry: The best fishing is wherever you are when you’re fishing! It would be terribly boring to fish the same place all the time.

SVM: What’s your favorite thing about fishing?
Terry: The great thing about fishing is that it gets you out to beautiful places with friends and family.

SVM: Do you have a favorite place to eat?
Terry: There are so many great local restaurants it would be tough to pick just one. I usually work my way around town, especially for lunch. But I do really enjoy breakfast at The Kneadery, lunch at Despo’s and après-(skiing or fishing) at Grumpy’s.

SVM: Any other favorite local family activities?
Terry: Taking a Middle Fork (of the Salmon River) trip is one of the best things we’ve ever done as a family. Being able to connect to nature and your family like that is really special. Unplugging and disconnecting from regular life every once in a while is really important.




A Day in the Life: Christopher Roebuck


Photo by Max Monahan.

SVM: What is your perfect Sun Valley day?
Christopher: Spring is my favorite season because you can hike, ski and ride motorbikes all in one day. I’ll never forget the day I hiked Carbonate in Hailey in the morning, skied Baldy with my buddy, Rando, and then rode my dirt bike out Croy Canyon and met my brother, Jeff, who rode over from Fairfield to meet me. I was pretty sore a couple days later, though.

SVM: Where do you like to get breakfast?
Christopher: Sebastian and I will walk over to work, drop the dogs off and then meet Nora over at Java (in Hailey) for hot chocolate with extra whipped cream!

SVM: How about lunch?
Christopher: There are a lot of great places for lunch in Hailey. Shelley’s Deli is terrific, but one of our favorite summer family things to do is to ride our bikes down to Bellevue—the bike path is absolutely killer—have lunch at Mahoney’s and then ride back up Broadford Road.

SVM: Do you have a favorite après-adventure spot?
Christopher: I love to stop by The Wicked Spud after a ride (mountain bike or motocross). Their outdoor deck is awesome.

SVM: Where do you like to go for dinner?
Christopher: Just like lunch, there are a lot of good options for dinner in Hailey. We like the Muleshoe because it’s easy to go there with kids. The (Sun Valley) Brewery is family to me. We go there all the time. Everything is just delicious there.




A Day in the Life: Julie Youngblood


Photo by Dev Khalsa.

SVM: Where do you like to grab breakfast?
Julie: Perry’s. My parents call me in the morning, ask if I’m alive and I come meet them. I always get the Perry’s Potatoes with a side of deluxe hash browns and Hollandaise sauce … and a biscuit. And a cup of coffee. Not the world’s healthiest, but I usually have a big day ahead, or a hangover.

SVM: What is your “Hump Day” like?
Julie: Wednesday’s are my favorite! I usually work extra on Tuesdays so I can have Wednesday off. In the winter it’s Town Series (ski race)—I wake up in the morning and have people over for a pancake breakfast. In the summer, I meet my family for a trail run around 10am. Then I’ll work in the middle of the day and ride horses in the afternoon. Then it’s co-ed soccer, which is the best way to end a day!

SVM: Where is your favorite swimming hole?
Julie: Sheepherder’s Bridge. I just learned to do a backflip, so I like to practice off the bridge. My sisters come watch me ’cause usually I bellyflop. And there’s always little kids watching, which is embarrassing.

SVM: Lunchtime haunts?
Julie: Sometimes I meet Rachel Porter, my roommate, during her lunch break and take the dogs up Proctor Loop. It’s the perfect day hike, close to town. My favorite lunch spot is Subshack. I go there once or twice a week. If they have tuna, I get the Sorry Charlie with peppers, and I get a bag of salt n’ vinegar chips and put them in the sandwich for extra crunch. And they have dollar beer! So while you’re waiting for your sandwich, you can have a Budweiser.

SVM: Tell me about a typical night on the town.
Julie: I usually go to Ketch’em Alive on Tuesdays. My sisters bring a classy picnic of box wine (always) and cheese—you’ll always see someone you know there. For a late bite to eat, I like the “Le Cab” [La Cabañita] deck, ’cause it stays in the sun longest and you can get flautas for $6 and a “boomba” of beer. Depending on how the boomba goes, I’ll usually end up at The Cellar Pub afterwards (‘cause Rick and Paige and Kitten are awesome!). It starts the “1-2-3 cycle” of the Cellar, catching a show at Whiskeys and then the Casino. Then I’ll catch the 12:20 pm curfew bus to Warm Springs. I can be in bed by 12:45 pm—after a late-night snack—and I can still wake up and have a full day.

SVM: How do you calm a sweet-tooth craving?
Julie: Salted caramel bread pudding at il Naso. Hands down. I have dreams about it.

SVM: Favorite place to blow your money?
Julie: Ketchum Flower Company. I usually lose my earrings about four times a year, so I go in there and get another pair. Their smaller earrings are perfect.

SVM: Where do you go to get away?
Julie: Sometimes I go with Taylor Stoecklein to their ranch in Mackay. We’re good buddies, and there’s a lot of solitude out there, especially in the saddle. You can be on a mountaintop with a bunch of cows. It’s really nice. I’m so lucky.




A Day in the Life: Marshall Bennett


Photo by Paulette Phlipot.

SVM: What’s your Sun Valley story? How did you end up here?
Marshall: In 1962, I had a friend that was an attorney for Union Pacific who said, “Let’s go skiing in Sun Valley!” I said, “Where’s that?” He told me about the ski resort and we took a train to Shoshone. It was pouring rain and my wife said, “This better be good!” When we got to Sun Valley it was snowing hard and it snowed for six days straight—it never stopped! We’ve been hooked ever since.

SVM: My perfect Sun Valley day starts with … ?
Marshall: My close friend, Paul Kenney, and I play golf every day—Monday through Friday. We meet every morning and play nine holes at the White Clouds. I love playing golf there!

SVM: What do you do after golf?
Marshall: I work out at Zenergy after golf. I do cardio and weights—I do it all. I try to be in good shape while I still have all my marbles!

SVM: Where do you and Arlene like to go to lunch or dinner?
Marshall: We love all the wonderful restaurants the Valley has to offer. We are often at Perry’s, Vintage, Rasberrys or CK’s for lunch. And we love to go see my friend Bob Lund at The Grill at Knob Hill for dinner, or we go to the Ketchum Grill, The Pioneer, Il Naso or to the Ram before the Symphony. There are two special events in the summer for us: the Sun Valley Summer Symphony and the Sun Valley Writers’ Conference. We love going to both of them. The Pavilion that Earl Holding constructed with his assistant, Wally Huffman, is a very special place. I don’t think there’s another resort in the world that has this kind of facility. Earl Holding was a dear friend and we still remain good friends with Carol.

SVM: What makes Sun Valley so special?
Marshall: Sun Valley is a remarkable community! Everyone is mingling with each other—rich people, ski athletes, restaurant workers, film stars. That doesn’t happen in other places. There is nothing like the beauty of Sun Valley in the summer. We are lucky to live here. We’ve made many lifelong friends here, we visit and dine at each other’s home, we celebrate birthdays, weddings and other exciting events and we share our friendships and good fortune with one another.

SVM: Tell me about the Marshall Bennett Classic:
Marshall: You’ve heard of that? Well, I hit my head on a rock in a kayaking accident on the Middle Fork of the Salmon in 1976. I was in the hospital for many months, a coma for weeks, and after four surgeries and two years of recovery I finally made it back to civilization. As I was improving by 1978, I started The Marshall Bennett Classic, a gathering of CEOs, chairmen and presidents of large real estate firms in the U.S., Canada, England, Germany, Israel and other countries from time to time. It’s a very exciting experience. More than 150 people attend each year.

SVM: Why are you still working?
Marshall: It’s fun! I’ve been a very lucky person. I have a remarkably lovely, fun-loving wife and she said, “I married you for better or for worse, but not for lunch.” So I live up to her expectations by having lunch with her every day and I keep working—I enjoy what I do.

This article appears in the Issue of Sun Valley Magazine.