The Wood River Valley is bracing for the loss of one of its largest employers. Ski equipment maker Smith Optics is one of the area’s top 10 employers and one of the biggest private-sector employers, according Harry Griffith, director of Sun Valley Economic Development - a nonprofit focused on the Blaine County economy.
A ballot measure in the Sun Valley area is emblematic of the challenges facing small airports across the West. Residents of Hailey and Ketchum, Idaho decide Tuesday whether to raise city taxes to subsidize commercial airline service.
Voters in the neighboring Idaho resort towns are being asked to raise the lodging and rental car tax, and in the case of Ketchum add a 1 percent retail sales tax, although groceries and gas would be exempt from the higher tax.
Ketchum is known for its recreational opportunities. Hiking, camping and river sports have long been touted as reasons for people to visit the Wood River Valley. But a distinction from a national arts organization could give the small community another claim to fame.
The Sun Valley Film Festival wrapped up Sunday with actress Jodie Foster giving a public talk. Foster says she's excited about the festival because it brings unique films and the movie making process to the Wood River Valley.
Officials in Ketchum say private supporters of a proposed whitewater park will pay for an environmental assessment on a possible transfer of federal land. That land is needed before the project can move forward.
Ketchum Parks and Recreation Department Director Jennifer Smith told city councilors last week that the U.S. Bureau of Land Management has listed the city's land transfer request as a low priority. Because of budget restraints, the agency won't complete a review in less than three years.
In the 1990s, Jim and Jamie Dutcher set out to study and film a wolf pack. They camped for years in the Sawtooth Mountains living side by side with wolves in a controlled environment. The couple now has a book, called “The Hidden Life of Wolves,” that was released this week.
In a unanimous vote last night, the Ketchum city council added protections for LGBT residents. The new law protects against discrimination in housing, employment and public accommodations.
Ketchum is the third city in Idaho to pass this kind of ordinance, following Sandpoint and Boise. Currently there is no statewide law protecting against housing and employment discrimination based on sexual orientation.
A recent merger of two Wood River Valley arts groups has created the largest organization of its kind in Idaho. The merger includes Company of Fools theater company in Hailey and Sun Valley Center for the Arts in Ketchum.
John Glenn is with Company of Fools. He's thrilled about the merger.