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Summit Sometimes

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The tranquil summer days of Breckenridge seem light years away for Miami, Fla., residents Frank and Rosemary Miller right now, with Hurricane Ivan teetering in the Caribbean.”It’s like your looking down the barrel of a gun aimed at you, and you don’t know whether the aim is very good or not,” said Frank Miller, who along with his wife and two other couples, owns a condo on Ski Hill Road.The couple’s Miami home was spared by recent Hurricanes Charley and Frances, but Ivan is forecasted to be more of a threat to the neighborhood.The triple-whammy of storms is something Florida has not seen since the 1960s. Charley and Frances have collectively killed at least 44 people and caused up to $20 billion in damage, according to the Associated Press.

“It gets old after a while,” Miller said. “This particular year is more active than it has been for a long time.”At this point, the Millers don’t plan to evacuate. They are keeping a watch on the forecast and stocking up on supplies, hoping to know more by Sunday.”We stayed here during Andrew, which was 140-145 mph winds, and everything worked out fine,” Miller said.It’s a long way from the family’s stress-free winter and summer vacations to Breckenridge. What do you like about Breckenridge? Why do you come?It’s just really peaceful and relaxing. We like to sit back and read and look at the gorgeous scenery – that’s about it. We don’t fish or do whitewater rafting or that kind of thing. It’s just very relaxing. You don’t have any daily duties calling or the phone ringing. Even though we’re retired … daily life puts demands on you, and when you’re out there, those demands are gone.

Winter or summer?At this stage in our lives, summer is as much fun as winter is. My wife and I are both getting a little creaky, and the skiing really takes a lot of energy. The weather is gorgeous out there in the summer. In the middle of the day, it’s up to 75 (degrees); we don’t even get down to 75 in the middle of the night here.

How about winter?We ski. That’s what induced us to buy our place in Breckenridge. We started skiing in Aspen, and we went to Snowmass and Steamboat. Then we started looking (for a place) as an investment as much as anything and ended up buying a place in Breckenridge.It’s a long jaunt from Miami to Denver. But it’s still fun, and over the years we’ve enjoyed the heck out of it.How often are you here?Normally one to two weeks a year. We call it an investment. We do rent the place. It has appreciated probably two and a half times since we bought it in ’85. We’ve had a lot of fun, especially our daughters. They go out for a week at a time skiing. It’s a totally different way of life than we have here. – JasonStarr/

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