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Community News from the Heart of Summit County

Silverthorne’s Got Heart: Making North Pond More Skateable

Published April 1, 2019

You might know Bob Lau as a top-notch financial advisor with his own financial services business (Summit Wealth Advisors). Or you might know him from his coaching days at the Silverthorne Elementary where he coached both of his kids, Abbey and Jake in various sports. Perhaps you know him from his days as a guide for Copper Mountain’s Over the Hill Gang. Or maybe you’ve seen Bob enjoying breakfast at Mountain Lyon Cafe or grabbing a bottle of something tasty from Chris at Locals Liquors.

Any way you slice it, if you know Bob, you know that this native Wisconsinite (who has called Silverthorne home since 1992) is passionate about ice skating. And for a year or so, the folks in Silverthorne have been reaping the benefits of this love affair.

You see, when his children were younger, Bob started “grooming” Legend Lake with his snowblower every winter so his family could spend evenings and weekends together sledding, skating and playing hockey. Pretty soon, Silverthorne invested in permanent structures at North Pond and began clearing the ice with Town equipment and personnel.  

However, Bob continues to put his touch on the ice, helping the town get the North Pond up and running for skating season every winter with a hose and snowblower.  The pond, which was initially a small family adventure, is now regularly maintained by the Town to provide icy fun that lasts from November until about President’s Day weekend.

“On any given evening or weekend [in the winter], you’ll see few to a few dozen skaters on the North Pond,” Bob explains. “There’s a nice facility with a warming hut up there. It’s great to see people out enjoying it.”

This year, he took it a step further. Skaters bring their own skates to the pond. To open the experience to more participants, Bob bought some used skates from Recycle Sports and asked the community to leave any unneeded or unused skates or hockey equipment so that those without skates could enjoy the ice too.

And boy, do they enjoy it. Silverthorne even threw a First Friday event at North Pond in December. “That was really fun,” Bob says. “A bunch of restaurants donated chili, several residences donated their time and it seemed like everyone came out to enjoy the evening.”

So the next time you spot Bob at Sunshine Cafe or maybe on the bike path, give him a high five. He’s definitely earned at least that.

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