I Love this Town!
“I fell in love with Jackson Hole on my first visit in the late 1970’s. I moved here for good in 1980, and the Town of Jackson has been my home ever since.”
I hitchhiked into town in September 1980 to make Jackson Hole my home. My first job was as a maid at the 6-K Motel (Now the Elk Country Inn), I also worked at the old Jackson Burger. When I realized that Anthony’s Italian Restaurant was the best place to work in town I proceeded to pester Richard the front of house manager on a daily basis until I got hired on as a dishwasher. I worked at Anthony’s until around 1986 which is the year I started playing music full time. I met my lovely wife, Mary in 1989, and we got married in 1996. I’ve always lived in the Town of Jackson. The Westbank snobbery of looking down on Town never took hold for me. I’ve always loved Town – the beautiful neighborhoods, and the lively downtown.
Besides a summer of Tipi sitting on Wenzel Lane. I’ve lived exclusively in Town including stints in a basement on Milward (The Milward Palace), the Simpson Street House, an apartment above the rodeo grounds, and an infamous night or two in the Orville’s free box and the Browse and Buy drop off closet. Since 1986 I’ve made my home on Rancher Street in East Jackson. A day doesn’t go by that I don’t feel the awe of the beauty of Jackson Hole and my neighborhood in particular.
In 2002 Mary and I founded Planet Jackson Hole. Our goal was to provide an alternative voice to the recently combined News and Guide. Publishing a weekly newspaper kindled in us a passion for free speech and open dialogue. These are building blocks of a successful society and our most precious rights.
I actually had two visits to Jackson as a teenager that kindled my love for the valley. The first was a high school ski trip. We had ridden all night on a bus from Minnesota. We arrived in Jackson at 5am on New Year’s Day 1979. The bus pulled up infront of the open 24 hours a day Elkhorn Cafe (now Tegeler Insurance) and our large group of sleepy teenagers stumbled off the bus into the darkness. To our amazement we were hit with the coldest temperature ever recorded in Jackson Hole -50 degrees. The 20’ walk from the bus to the front door of the Elkhorn was frosty! Upon entering the Elkorn we were greeted not by a sleepy small town cafe, but with a raging New Year’s Eve after hours party that had brought together all the revelers that had no other place to go. We sat in numbed awe watching the partiers along with the Sherrif with the handlebar mustache who was patiently sipping coffee in his cowboy hat watching the shenanigans.
My second visit to Jackson Hole was the following summer when a friend of mine and I ended up camping out in his aunt’s yard across from Nethercott for two weeks. It was on that visit that I saw Jackson from a local’s perspective. I climbed in the Tetons and learned that Western Swing Dancing was what the cool kids were doing. That trip cemented my desire to live in Jackson Hole and that’s exactly what I did straight out of high school. For me Jackson Hole was the coolest place ever and I wanted to help preserve that from the moment I arrived. I was active in advocating for the 1994 comprehensive plan, and was part of a group called People for the Plan. I served on the Town of Jackson Planning & Zoning Commission/Board of Adjustment during the time when the Resort Districts were fleshed out. Now that my kids are growing up and leaving home I’m ready to offer my help in guiding this community that I love by running for Town Council.
36 year resident of Jackson
Served on Town of Jackson Planning & Zoning Commission/Board of Adjustment
Co-Founder and Co-Publisher of Planet Jackson Hole
Experience as an employee and employer
Free speech advocate