The Aspen [†] Idea is a legacy that has established Aspen as a place to cultivate lifelong education, civic engagement, physical health, personal responsibility, spiritual development and an environmental consciousness. It is a fundamental awareness that mind, body and spirit can be fully integrated parts of a whole and balanced person, and this interconnectedness entails the cultivation of all three. At a basic level, this valuable concept can help provide balance to our community and to our individual lives.
The concept was born when Walter and Elizabeth Paepcke, and a circle of friends from Chicago, began convening intellectuals, artists, skiers, philanthropists and philosophers in Aspen after World War II.
We value authentic engagement with others, including civil discourse about the kind of community we want to create and maintain. The Aspen Idea is now a core element of the community's heritage and identity, enriching our quality of life and reinforcing Aspen's national and international profile.
† Aspen Area Community Plan, 2012, www.cityofaspen.com, accessed March, 2021.