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What's Up, Up Here? All the news and gossip for May 4-10

May 4, 2012

Sierra Wave sunset, Crowley Lake. Photo/Greg Newbry

The Tioga Pass Gate on S.R. 120 was closed to vehicles last weekend, but not to cyclists, and members of Mammoth’s Eastside Velo Club took full advantage. Sadly, that beautiful ride is about to come to an end. Cars, RVs, pickups and the other motorists start heading into the park on Monday. …

Speaking of the two-wheeled set, Biycling.com named Mammoth’s High Sierra Century among the “Top 10” September century rides (100 miles) in the U.S. …

That was truly amazing sunset Monday night, photographed by many, including one shot from the Village by ski legend Mike Douglas, in town this past week for the Salomon Jib Academy. He called it an “All-time Apocalyptic Sunset.” Howard says more Lenties are on the way as the season changes. …

Chef Frederic Pierrel gone from the Lakefront? Yes. Will he be back? Probably not. …

Has it really been 15 years for Mammoth Mountaineering? Yessir! …

Heads up! California State Park Annual Pass fees went from $125 to $195 on May 1, last Tuesday. … 

RIP Bob Smith, inventor of the modern ski goggle who used dental tools and foam to make fog-free goggles, often trading his prototypes for lift tickets. Once perfected, he created Smith Optics, the company he founded in 1965 in Ketchum, Idaho, to manufacture them. …

Great to see Stacey Cook and the After School All Stars last Sunday. The city kids earned a trip to Mammoth to learn to ski or ride by having good attendance in after school programs, and had Cook, a World Cup downhiller, schooling them. Lucky kids. …

Katie Mac is on vacation in Georgia for a month or so, and mornings on KMMT won’t be quite the same. …

Happy trails to Summit Condominiums manager and former Town Councilman/Mayor Dan Wright, off to desert climes after June 30. …

We’re hearing that Angel’s, under new management just this past week, is headed for a big re-model, with a bar upstairs. …

The Mono Lake Committee reports there was evidence of much post-winter rockfall work along Hwy 120 this spring between Lee Vining and Tioga Pass, but there also were also beautiful backcountry ski tracks on the slopes above the road. …

It’s starting to feel like old times again, what with “Backcountry Bob” Sollima back at Red’s Meadow. Great news for the horseshoe pitchers. …

Speaking of horses and shoes, horseshoe tourneys have begun at the Z-Bar Ranch. Must be summer already. …

We’re built for speed up here, and on Memorial Day Weekend there’s a speed camp on the ski hill. U.S. Ski Team members Stacey Cook, Steven Nyman, TJ Lanning and John Teller conduct a three-day weekend focused on learning the technical and tactical elements of the speed disciplines. This camp is designed for all ages and abilities, from intermediate to high-level FIS racers. Groups are organized by experience and ability to ensure you are in a comfortable environment and assigned world-class coaches. Interaction and time with the U.S. Ski Team members is guaranteed. $449. …

Meanwhile, X Games Gold Medal winner Teller on May 19-20 will teach the secrets to speed. He knows all about it, having become the first American to win a World Cup Ski Cross event. $299. …

Mike McKenna, a pal of many Mammothites and now editor of Sun Valley magazine, roped in a Maggie Award for the best mag of its size West of the Mississippi. He says he’s stoked, and so are we. …

Mammoth Lakes Tourism is going to load up for the May 8 town finances meeting at Suite Z in the town office complex, says Director John Urdi. If you really need to know what tourism means to Mammoth, we suggest you be there at 6 p.m. …

Mammoth Lakes Repertory Theatre at the Edison Theatre is holding auditions for The Marvelous Wonderettes on May 10 -11 at 6 p.m. Questions? Call Shira Dubrovnik, 760-934-6592, for the inside skinny. …

Just for the heck of it: National Bike to Work Day is May 18. …

Just for the heck of it, Part II: Ban on plastic bags went into effect in Aspen last Tuesday. Just sayin’ …

Town Councilman Matthew Lehman says he spoke with Nike’s marketing group about them possibly bringing a bigger and better running facility to Mammoth for the summer, or longer. “They have been hearing all about the pending track, Mammoth, its athletes, and the Olympians that are up here training,” said he. …

We’re sorry to hear Beth Anderson is closing Heart in Hand, the second business in the ground floor strip in Minaret Mall this week, Brian Knox’s Access being the first to close up shop. At least four more retail closures to come as the spring wears on and the summer approaches.

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