Latest News – October 21

But is It Built Leadville Tough?

Last Thursday and Friday, Oct. 17 & 18, Leadville and Lake County, Colo. provided the backdrop for a national truck commercial. The recent snow and cold came right on cue as the “Hauling-a-Christmas-Tree-Across-the-Country” commercial used historic Harrison Avenue as one of its location spots.

The Ram and the Christmas Tree rolling down historic Harrison Avenue in Leadville. Photo: Cindy DeMarco.

The Ram and the Christmas Tree rolling down historic Harrison Avenue in Leadville. Photo: Cindy DeMarco.

The crew arrived late Wednesday evening, and the economic impact was felt immediately as one Leadville hotel manager reported via social media that “They have taken over our hotels, and we love it!”  No doubt, the albeit 48-hour, excitement was welcome business during the in-between season of summer and skiing, when lodging occupancy is generally lower.

It was " Quiet on the Set," for historic  Harrison Avenue last Friday, October 18.

It was ” Quiet on the Set,” for historic Harrison Avenue last Friday, October 18 as production crews rolled film.

The production crew out of Denver was filming on behalf of the Dodge Ram truck folks. Without giving too much away, the commercial’s concept is the reliability of a Ram Truck to haul this HUGE  Christmas tree across the country, through towns like Leadville.

On Thursday, the crew spent much of the day filming up on Leadville’s east side, specifically Adelaide Park up toward Mosquito Pass. Locals who know their hills will no doubt be able to recognize this scene should it make the cut for the holiday commercial, scheduled to air this season.

“Wardrobe Malfunction” Photo: Sue Mullineux.

“Wardrobe Malfunction” Photo: Sue Mullineux.

But the irony of Thursday afternoon’s “Wardrobe Malfunction” as first reported by Leadville Today, did not go amiss with the large population of truck-loving locals. After the reports of the crew’s wardrobe trailer skidding off the icy eastside pathway took off, Leadville Today’s Facebook Page hosted a lively (respectful) discussion about who makes the best truck for the Colorado high country: Dodge, Chevy or Ford? Join the discussion: LINK.

Regardless, the film crew was quick to recover from Thursday’s “wardrobe malfunction,” and before sunrise on Friday, they were back out filming at the Leadville/Lake County Airport. Bet that allowed for some awesome footage as the sun’s first light hit the two highest peaks in Colorado!

But ultimately it was the final location that most would like to be showcased in the commercial’s final cut: historic Harrison Avenue. Still early on Friday monring, the production company drew a small, but hardy crowd of spectators as temperatures were in the ice box. The wind didn’t help either.

But those conditions certainly made for the holiday scene the crew was hoping for, and by the end of the third shot, everyone was starting to get into the Christmas spirit.

Video of the Ram and the Christmas Tree

By noon, the gig was up and that HUGE Christmas Tree was seen heading north out of town, on to Loveland Pass for additional filming. Eventually, the giant fir will be placed at some high school in Denver (no one seemed to know which one) to be decorated for Christmas!

So that’s a wrap for the Dodge Ram commercial in #Leadville. The advertisement is supposed to air sometime this holiday season. So, no doubt, it’ll be here – along with all the other Christmas commercials – before you can sing O Tannenbaum!! 

Update: That big Christmas tree is now on display in Denver’s Civic Center Park – Merry Christmas, Colorado!ChristmasTree

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Mary Jo Copper Wins Again in Ford Country

 “It couldna happened to a nicer person,” is what many Leadville locals have been saying when they hear the news about Leadville’s Mary Jo Copper winning a new Ford Fiesta automobile in a recent online contest.

And no doubt, it’s exactly the same thing that they said about Copper when 50 years ago, Mary Jo won her first Ford contest!

Twice as Lucky is Mary Jo Copper of Leadville as she excepts the keys to the new Ford Fiesta she won in a contest nearly 50 years ago to the FIRST f=Ford she won in a contest! Pictured here with Kevin Shaughnessy at Phil Long Ford Denver.

Twice as Lucky is Mary Jo Copper of Leadville as she excepts the keys to the new Ford Fiesta she won in a contest nearly 50 years ago to the FIRST Ford she won in a contest! Pictured here with Kevin Shaughnessy at Phil Long Ford Denver.

“Yeah, Mom called last Monday,” recounted her son Paul Copper in a recent interview with Leadville Today, “She said, ‘I thought I’d call you and be the first to let you know I won!’ It’s pretty cool she’s won two Fords.”

Back in August 1963, (Paul) Copper explained, his mother she won a Ford Station Wagon in a Coca Cola contest. “The station wagon was loaded up with all kinds of camping goods and sporting equipment,” said Copper. “There was baseball gloves, bats and baseballs and camping goods, tents and folding tables, a ton of stuff.”

Mary Jo and husband Bill Copper owned and operated Bill's Sport Shop on the corner of 3rd and Harrison for over 5 decades at this location.

Mary Jo and husband Bill Copper owned and operated Bill’s Sport Shop on the corner of 3rd and Harrison for over 5 decades at this location.

Certainly it just the kind of stuff the active Copper family could use, not to mention the Bill’s Sporting Goods Store which they owned for more than 60 years in Leadville.

Copper’s winning ticket this time around was drawn by former Denver Bronco linebacker Randy Gradishar. As reported on the Phil Long Ford in Denver’s Facebook Page:

In 1963 Mary Jo Copper entered a contest with Coca-Cola to win a new Ford Station Wagon. She won. 50 years later she entered a contest with Phil Long Ford of Denver to win a new Fiesta. She won again. 2 new Fords in 50 years-it’s a cool story, and a really great lady. Congratulations, Mary Jo Copper on your new Ford Fiesta! — with Kevin Shaughnessy at Phil Long Ford Denver.

Congratulations is right and “it couldna happened to a nicer person!”

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