The Historic 1936 Sun Valley Lodge Is Open But Not Everyone Is Pleased With The Results.
There is no question that the Lodge was probably in need of upgrading of the water and electrical system and certainly internet wiring needed to be added. But the remodeling went much further. Much was lost in the process.
Many locals have indicated displeasure at the
destruction of the fabulous Lodge Dining Room (LDR). The entire end of the Lodge which housed the LDR, was totally removed to make way for a luxury spa.
Of the ten reasons why people have a vacation home in Sun Valley or visit the area for a vacation, visiting a luxury spa is not even in the top ten. The former Lodge HAD a spa that was very nice and served those who were interested. Not only was the fabulous Lodge Dinning Room lost, but the dance floor in the Duchin Room lounge is no longer.
Maybe the somewhat cold and slick new Lodge will in the end turn out to be financially a good move. Time will tell. However the loss of the LDR and the evening dancing in the Duchin Room remove two of the top ten reasons why people purchased vacation homes in Sun Valley. At this point, Carol Holding has made a huge mistake in what she allowed to be done to the former, classic Sun Valley Lodge. Everyone doubts that if Earl Holding was still living, he would never allowed the classic aspects to the Lodge to be removed.
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The best event this summer in
Sun Valley is the Killebrew-Thompson Golf Tournament. It begins Wednesday
August 19th for registration.
Even when he knew he was dying of leukemia, Danny
Thompson wanted only one thing: To be judged as a baseball player, not as a
victim of an incurable illness. Now, thanks to one of its founders, Harmon
Killebrew, who judged him outstanding as a man, the Killebrew-Thompson is
fighting back against the cancers that killed them both.
Thompson was a big league shortstop. Big league in every
sense of the word. He played the tough position for the Minnesota Twins during
the first half of the 1970s, and he kept on playing it after he learned, in the
spring of 1974, that he had leukemia. Doctors at the Mayo Clinic and the
University of Minnesota medical school attempted to hold the illness under
control. Danny became the second person in history to take a series of
experimental injections to partially immunize him against the illness.
He continued to play baseball. During the 1975 season he
led all American League shortstops in batting average and played well enough
that he had hopes of making the All-Star team. Danny passed away in December
1976, leaving a wife, two daughters, a commendable major league playing record,
and a former teammate who didn’t want Danny Thompson’s life, and death, to go
That teammate was Harmon Killebrew, the 20-year veteran
who spent most of his career with Minnesota and stands fifth on the all time
list of home run sluggers. When Danny died, Harmon promptly wrote out a $6,000
check for leukemia research. But he didn’t think that was enough.
Killebrew retired from baseball after the 1975 season
and went into the estate planning and insurance business with former Idaho
Congressman Ralph Harding. Until they went into business together they didn’t
know each other and had little in common—a Democrat and a Republican, a
politician and a ballplayer, and Harding knew little about baseball. Killebrew
hasn’t let him forget the day he asked, “Who’s Nolan Ryan?”
But Ralph went east each year to play in the Vince
Lombardi Memorial Golf Tournament, which raises money for cancer research, and
when Harmon sat down one day, he told Ralph about Danny Thompson, and said, “I
wish I could do something in his memory.” Ralph had the idea: A golf tournament
to raise money for the fight against leukemia.
So they scheduled it at Sun Valley, which has two
18-hole golf courses (Sun Valley and Elkhorn) designed by Robert Trent Jones,
and they went to work to promote it.
The arrangements could not have gone better. Harding
used his political contacts to bring to Idaho the nation’s best-known amateur
golfer: Gerald Ford. “I love to play golf,” Ford said. “And it’s a good cause.”
Ford’s opening-round foursome included the late Speaker of the House Thomas
“Tip” O’Neill of Massachusetts. Killebrew went to the baseball world. Mickey
Mantle and his son flew up from Dallas with Brad Corbett, owner of the Texas
Rangers. Jim Lemon and Bob Allison showed up. The tournament itself turned out
to be a rousingly happy occasion.
In 2006, Founder Ralph Harding passed. And in the
tournament’s 35th year Harmon Killebrew, founder and friend, was lost to
esophageal cancer. In dedication to his memory, the Board of Directors changed
the name to the Killebrew-Thompson Memorial Golf Tournament.
Harmon was truly a gifted man. He not only was one of
the greatest baseball players of all time, but he had a knack for creating
memories for the millions of people he met along the way. And now, those
teammates and friends to one another more than thirty years ago are joining
their names together for the fight to eradicate cancer’s horrible diseases.
Speaker of the US House, John Boehner, chats with celebs in Sun Valley
regarding recent legislation. Left, Frankie Randall, Melinda Read,
Speaker Boehner and Allen Pennay. July 2009.
August brings out the celebrities in Sun Valley.
Left, Nancy Kerrigan, who stars in this week's ice show, Frankie Randall,
recording artist and nationally acclaimed vocalist, and Melinda Read, host of
the celebrity interview talk show, Talk of the Desert from Palm Springs,
Joe Foss and Frankie Randall in the Duchin Room at the Sun
Company A commentary and an idea for next year.
Is Live Music On The
Way Out At Sun Valley?
Previously there was a trio that
played for dinner and dancing in the Lodge Dinning Room. Now, the
LGD has been totally destroyed.
Previously Joe Fos (pictured above with the
late Las Vegas entertainer Frankie Randall) played the piano as his trio
performed in the Duchin Lounge nightly. Now, Joe is playing the piano only
Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at the Sun Valley Golf Club through August 23rd.
Larry Harshbarger is still playing the piano
at the Ram Restaurant Wednesday through Sunday from 6 to 9:30pm but only through
the month of July.
Valley Needs Quality Entertainment.
Joe Maccarillo passed in his sleep at his long
time home in Hailey.
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