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Summit Sometimes

Summit Daily/Jason StarrBob and Penny Chebul

Never underestimate the power of the Over the Hill Gang.Bob and Penny Chebul figured they would spend their retirement years skiing in Steamboat Springs. They liked the area and bought a place there in 1999. At the same time, they were familiar with Summit County, taking side trips from their primary residence in Morrison to ski with the Over the Hill Gang at Copper Mountain.It took only one season for the couple to realize that the social web weaved by the Copper Mountain group blows away anything they could find in Steamboat.”We found we had a harder time meeting people up there than we did here,” explained Bob. “I think the Over the Hill Gang at Copper Mountain has been a real asset to us, and I think it’s an asset to Summit County. It provided us with a really good means to meet a lot of people.”

Now the couple spends all winter at their Wildernest home, skiing more than 60 days a season with a tight-knit group of friends. In the summer, they are back and forth from Morrison. In all, their time is split about 50-50 between the two homes.Will you ever move here full time?Bob: “We keep toying with that idea. The decision so far has been no. The mud season is kind of a drag. We’ve got a nice set up. When it’s muddy, wet and cold here it’s still pretty pleasant (in Morrison). So we think we’ve got the best of both worlds splitting our time between the two places.”Penny: “But we’re finding more and more summer things up here. We’re up here almost every week in the summer now.”

How were you able to retire at a relatively young age?Bob: “Good luck and not greed. You don’t have to be old to retire, just not greedy. We have a comfortable lifestyle and figured it was enough. Plus, the company I worked for was bought out, and we got a pretty attractive package. They told me to go away, so I came here.”

What do you think of second homeowners voting in Summit County?Bob: “We pay a lot of property taxes, and our voices aren’t recognized. I think that as a second homeowner we ought to have some say in the election process. I just think that ought to go with the tax bill.”Do your sons get any use out of the place?Penny: “We find that when they start going off in their different directions, more than likely they’ll come visit us up in the mountains rather than at our house in Morrison. So that’s another reason why we’re looking for a bigger place so when they do come and visit, we’ll be all comfortable.”

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