A chance to wear President Ford's felt hat

President Ford's Raichle ski BootsOne would be on pretty solid ground to suggest Sheila Shea has a thing for presidents.

Every summer, she hits presidential libraries, presidential homes and events that have something to do with presidents. And she's not snobbish about it, either - Millard Fillmore gets as much love from Shea as Jimmy Carter or Ronald Reagan.

Which helps explain her excitement Friday at the Park Hyatt Beaver Creek. See, Shea was surrounded by President Gerald Ford memorabilia, things he used while he and first lady Betty Ford lived at their Beaver Creek residence. More than 500 items from Ford's personal collection are going to be auctioned off this morning. And Friday was a chance for the public to look at it all. Touch it. Breathe it all in.

Three charities - the Betty Ford Alpine Gardens, The OK Corral Camp for children with chronic and life-threatening medical conditions, and the Eagle River Scholarship Fund - will receive the proceeds.

The lots are an eclectic mix. Some scream presidential, such as a crystal golf invitational decanter with Ford's signature. Others look like your parents' interior decorating tastes circa 1975 - squatty lamps and crochet knickknacks.

Still, they all belonged to the Fords, and that was exciting enough for those picking through the items.

Link & Image: Rocky Mountain News
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