85 Days to Opening Day

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85 is the number to remember today. That is how many days until our scheduled opening day on November 23rd. This is the time of year when I start to get serious again about getting in shape for another ski season. Of course, it is a good time to remember to get your season pass, sign up for a seasonal program, lock in a seasonal rental and make plans to get stoked at this year’s Warren Miller film, which we are once again sponsoring in the Northeast. Speaking of season rentals, they are in very short supply here in the Valley. Warren was recently ranked 14th in the entire country as a town in which to own a vacation home, so our hidden secret is getting out. The supply of condos on the market has been reduced significantly and only four Gadd Brook homes remain available.

This is also the time of year when we begin interviewing in earnest for our winter seasonal positions. Due to the tight labor market, we have hired nearly 120 J-1 students and are delighted that over 20 are returnees from last winter. However, we typically need nearly 1,000 total employees, so there are plenty of positions remaining throughout the resort. If you know of someone who would love a job this winter, please send them our way. Of course, many of our veterans will be returning as well so there will be many familiar faces to greet you when you arrive for another season. However, the one face you will not see is Gerry Nooney, our Director of Food & Beverage. He and his wife Eileen are moving to North Carolina to be closer to their son and grandchildren. Fortunately, we have found a wonderful successor, Stephane Ohayon, who will be moving to the Valley and starting to work right after Labor Day. Stephane comes to us with a wealth culinary experience both within the USA as well as in France and has also had senior positions other ski resorts like Keystone and Alyeska. 

But anyway, enjoy the remaining few days of summer. I hope we will see many of you over Community Day weekend. We have a lot of planned fun activities throughout the weekend including our Oktoberfest that Sunday. My presentation this year will focus on both changes at Sugarbush as well as the future trends in our evolving industry. The recent acquisition of Peaks by Vail is the most recent example and it won’t be the last change to occur.