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2018/19 Skier visits

AdironRider

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Price to enter the sport is getting cost prohibitive as well so they are cutting out the stream of new skiers in order to keep their aging customer base. New skiers are not going to just jump at a season pass that will save them money after X number of days as they have no idea if they even want to continue in the sport. Will they even pay $160 to ski 1 day plus rentals and other costs?


This is really not that true. The vast majority of skiers learn while they are young/ in college, at least the basics and enough to decide if they like it or not. The sport is still affordable for the young.

Kids passes are still super cheap even in Jackson, kids (even up to teenagers) season rentals for ski gear are also super cheap. I can get my kid covered for an entire season for a pass and ski gear for 350 bucks, at one of the most expensive ski areas in the country. 239 for a junior pass and season long rental for 99. That number increases to 450 when my kid reaches college. That is cheaper than the local soccer program believe it or not.

Typically, their parents ski and get it, but I learned by my parents taking me to the hill to ski then they just hung out in the lodge or went and did their own thing, so it is not a requirement the parents even participate and is pretty much what any parent does at any other sport for their kids. It is not like Dad is out there playing t-ball with 5 year olds, or dunking on the kids hoops, so to say it requires a large expense for them isn't true.

Now, lets look at even never-ever adults trying skiing for the first time, which is already a significant minority of folks trying the sport for the first time. Of this tiny minority, a vast majority aren't getting up at 5am, driving 3 hours in the car to save money on hotels, dirt-bagging it and buying that one day ticket (BOGO, which there is a reason Groupon tanked as 1/2 off is a shitty way to do business) that one time. They are more likely taking a weekend or week long holiday with their significant other or family that skis, and at that point paying 350 bucks for an Epic Local makes sense.

I'm not saying it won't scare the occasional person away from the sport, but we need to also be real here and skiing is never going to be free. No sport really is once you reach adulthood. Even a decent pair of hightop sneakers and a basketball costs the better part of 200 bucks these days. You seen the price of a mountain bike recently? They make ski passes look like a steal.
 
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thetrailboss

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This is really not that true. The vast majority of skiers learn while they are young/ in college, at least the basics and enough to decide if they like it or not. The sport is still affordable for the young.

Kids passes are still super cheap even in Jackson, kids (even up to teenagers) season rentals for ski gear are also super cheap. I can get my kid covered for an entire season for a pass and ski gear for 350 bucks, at one of the most expensive ski areas in the country. 239 for a junior pass and season long rental for 99. That number increases to 450 when my kid reaches college. That is cheaper than the local soccer program believe it or not.

Typically, their parents ski and get it, but I learned by my parents taking me to the hill to ski then they just hung out in the lodge or went and did their own thing, so it is not a requirement the parents even participate and is pretty much what any parent does at any other sport for their kids. It is not like Dad is out there playing t-ball with 5 year olds, or dunking on the kids hoops, so to say it requires a large expense for them isn't true.

Now, lets look at even never-ever adults trying skiing for the first time, which is already a significant minority of folks trying the sport for the first time. Of this tiny minority, a vast majority aren't getting up at 5am, driving 3 hours in the car to save money on hotels, dirt-bagging it and buying that one day ticket (BOGO, which there is a reason Groupon tanked as 1/2 off is a shitty way to do business) that one time. They are more likely taking a weekend or week long holiday with their significant other or family that skis, and at that point paying 350 bucks for an Epic Local makes sense.

I'm not saying it won't scare the occasional person away from the sport, but we need to also be real here and skiing is never going to be free. No sport really is once you reach adulthood. Even a decent pair of hightop sneakers and a basketball costs the better part of 200 bucks these days. You seen the price of a mountain bike recently? They make ski passes look like a steal.

Parents who want to get their kids into skiing and don't ski themselves are not going to "know" or want to buy a season pass for their kids. Most folks don't think that way. They are only going to look at things on a day-by-day basis until the kid is hooked and can get the value out of more investment. ST has a legitimate point. Here's another good example. My local professional soccer team offers season tickets that are a "good value" I imagine, but I am not into soccer and only go to one or two games a year and pay for a game ticket. If single game ticket prices go too high, I won't go.
 

AdironRider

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I 100% disagree on kids sports. There aren't just random organized soccer games for a kid to hop in on, you sign them up for a season program commitment. Same with basketball or swimming, or most other sports. They all require gear purchases, and time commitments. (Heck, growing up my school district REQUIRED participation in one of these programs at least 2 out of 3 seasons) Most of them probably won't stick, and like I said, the local soccer program here costs over 400. A decent set of high tops and a basketball is well over 100 bucks, and that's before they step foot on a court. Like I mentioned before, I can get a season long ski/boot rental for 99, and every kid has snow pants and a warm jacket/gloves if they are even contemplating going skiing.

But if you want to talk single day tickets, a beginner lift ticket costs a whopping 27 bucks at Jackson peak season. I know of many resorts where it is a nominal cost for anyone under 5 or 6. Outside of gym class, you are paying for your kid to play. You can't even take a kid to a baseball game for that price.

The cost is really only unapproachable for an adult never ever, which would be a direct comparison to your soccer ticket analogy. This is a small component of the overall skier customer base, especially since the take rate for brand new 30+ year old skiers is miniscule even from that group.

And this isn't 1995 where the internet didn't exist. Anyone can go to a ski areas website and see the pricing right there. This isn't some new fangled idea either, you can find all you need to know about costs and options with 30 seconds of effort online, which people have been trained to do for basically everything these days. Let alone I know of no parent who isn't talking with other parents about this type of thing. They aren't out there like an ostrich with their head in the sand. Even in 1995, which was when my parents were setting me up with season long rentals and dropping me off at McIntyre, they figured it out on a blue collar 1 income household, and neither of them have skied a day in their life.

I'm just saying if you do the math, for most kids skiing really isn't all that unaffordable compared to other sports. It is actually cheaper than many others (like my soccer example). Hockey is way more expensive. So is gymnastics. Baseball is once you get them kitted out (and you can't rent cleats). Lets not even go to golf and equestrian sports.

At the very least you have seen this price creep across all sports and kids activities. It isn't exclusive to skiing.
 
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BenedictGomez

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Parents who want to get their kids into skiing and don't ski themselves are not going to "know" or want to buy a season pass for their kids. Most folks don't think that way. They are only going to look at things on a day-by-day basis until the kid is hooked and can get the value out of more investment..

From my ski school experience, it's my belief that the above is spot-on for most.

Sure, there are exceptions to every rule & sure there are plenty of people who research-the-hell-out-of-everything first (I am like that), but most people are not like that or dont want to commit that time & effort to bother. They just "one-day it" and see how it goes.
 

cdskier

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I feel like I must be misunderstanding this, or are you saying they made parents pay 2 years at once?

I believe he's referring to the different seasons of the school year (i.e. Fall, Winter, Spring) and that they required them to play a sport 2 of those 3 seasons (first time I ever heard of that being required anywhere).
 

deadheadskier

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From my ski school experience, it's my belief that the above is spot-on for most.

Sure, there are exceptions to every rule & sure there are plenty of people who research-the-hell-out-of-everything first (I am like that), but most people are not like that or dont want to commit that time & effort to bother. They just "one-day it" and see how it goes.
My skiing "upbringing" is definitely an exception. There were zero skiers in my family before me. I was an 8 year old little boy who LOVED snow. My dad saw an advertisement in the local paper for a seasonal Saturday skiing program for kids at Ward Hill. He decided to enroll me. Worked out well. He'd drop me off at the hill mid morning and go do his hardware store and grocery store run, then scoop me up around 1 in the afternoon to bring me home.

After about the fourth week and noticing how excited I was about it, instead of dropping me off and going to the hardware store, he'd go back home and bring my mother to Ward Hill. They'd sit in the parking lot and watch me joyfully skiing.

The following winter they enrolled me again in the same Saturday program. Throughout that winter my father realized a number of his banking customers skied and learning the sport would be a good way to network like he did on the golf course. Late that season he decided to start skiing and requested my mom learn too. They were 39 & 40 at the time.

My third season we left Ward Hill behind and day tripped somewhere in NH&vt every weekend. They fell in love with the sport quickly.

By around my fifth year skiing when I was in middle school my folks had become so into skiing that they bought a modest camp about five miles from Okemo. All family vacations after buying that camp were centered around skiing in the winter and enjoying lake rescue in the summer.

So, me being entered in the local, cheap skiing program went on change the leisure direction of my entire family.

Pretty cool



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Smellytele

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No one skied in my family either. I started at 14 when a friend invited me to go with his high school on a day trip to the original Crotched. I had a job and my parents said if I wanted to go I had to pay for it myself, which I did. My sister found an old pair of skis for me in a garage where she worked and my buddy lent me a paid of boots. Skied with friends a few more times throughout high school and college around NH and a few trips to Killington and Sugarbush all on my own dime. If it had been a high schooler’s/ college kid’s part time weeks pay check or more I wouldn’t have gone.


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machski

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Before my brother and I we're around, my dad had actually been on ski patrol at the original Crotched (The East side area which has never reopened). He gave that up and DH skiing when he met and married my mom (should would not DH ski and never has). We discovered dad's old gear in the basement and when I was 12, we finally convinced my parents to have dad take us and teach us. We got hooked, dad kept skiing for another decade or so with us and then gave it up again.

My wife and I don't have kids but my brother does and his kids learned at 2 each. They loved it and still skin bit but very occasionally as each are involved in year round team sports (Niece is in field hockey and lacrosse, Nephew Hockey and Lacrosse). Kind of crappy how those two sports suck up all their free time year round.

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drjeff

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If you're talking getting non ski before kids, with non skiing parents into the sport, the reality is the easiest way is if the kids school has an after school weekly ski program. It covers all the bases (access to a hill with lessons and rentals and transportation(, it's usually at a reasonable price point, and there's the social component that often can make or break the learning experience for a kid (a "bad" lesson with friends there is easier to want to come back for another one than a "bad" lesson where the kid doesn't know anybody in the group for the majority of kids these days). The social component, which is also an aspect the ski industry is trying to focus on as they target millennials who either have never skied or maybe have done so a handful of times before.

Like it or not, being able to post a selfie to one's instagram page while on the hill with friends is an important thing to a sizable market of young potential skiers/riders these days
 

cdskier

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So, me being entered in the local, cheap skiing program went on change the leisure direction of my entire family.

Pretty cool

That was a pretty damn cool story!


Before my brother and I we're around, my dad had actually been on ski patrol at the original Crotched (The East side area which has never reopened). He gave that up and DH skiing when he met and married my mom (should would not DH ski and never has). We discovered dad's old gear in the basement and when I was 12, we finally convinced my parents to have dad take us and teach us. We got hooked, dad kept skiing for another decade or so with us and then gave it up again.

Nice...a bit similar to me, although my dad was never on ski patrol anywhere. He did ski up until he met and married my mom. When I was about 14 or so my parents bought a vacation house in the Poconos near a small ski area. Myself, my brother, and my sister all started taking lessons and skiing there and my dad got back into it too at that point. He still skis with me although not as much as 5-10 years ago and his Dr makes him stick to groomers now.
 

dlague

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This conversation is now off the OP but....

I also was the first in my family at 16 with Jay Peak as my feeder hill - even made snow there for a year at 19. I got my two younger brothers into it years later when they were 8 and 13ish. My two sisters did not start unll they were in their thirties after seeing our family ski week after week. My ex wife skied about 5 times and never did it again while my now wife did not start skiing until 32 and now skies with me 50 + days per season. As a family we started going maybe 10 days per season while our boys were little. Eventually we got in 30 days per season and for the past 5 seasons have consistently got 50 days or more. Note that 3 of our boys have been on their own for that time. Spring sports always got in the way and none of our boys played winter sports. So it was all acheiveable to hit 30 but 50 days is now easier. Our kids now in their twenties except for our youngest still ski or snowboard but they are the average 6-10 days if they feel like it sometimes less.

One of my sisters has kids who are in baseball year round and their skiing has died and the other sister well her kids have grown up and they have stopped. One of my brothers no longer skis and the other brother still gets out there with is daughter but his wife gave it up.

That is the likely story for the industry. It is a roller coaster of a business. While some fade away others jump on. Then there are those who are consistent.

We were bargin hunters and did not buy season passes until three of our boys were on there own. Season passes ultimately got us skiing more. Buying season passes for 6 is not cheap. Spreading $'s through a season was easier.

Social media has be pivitol in getting people to try different things. Seeing friends and family skiing on Facebook has probably helped the sport at least for trying it.



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BenedictGomez

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If you're talking getting non ski before kids, with non skiing parents into the sport, the reality is the easiest way is if the kids school has an after school weekly ski program.

That's how I started as someone without a skier in my family. My friends joined ski club, and it sounded like fun, so I asked my Mom if I could do it and the rest is history. Those public school ski club deals were an unreal bargain. I cant recall the precise sum, but I do recall a beginner lift ticket, boot/ski rentals, and 1.5 hour lesson each week was crazy cheap. This was at a little Pocono hill.

Like it or not, being able to post a selfie to one's instagram page while on the hill with friends is an important thing to a sizable market of young potential skiers/riders these days

I really hope the, "I am the most important thing on this planet" mentality swiftly dies after that generation.
I'm optimistic that it will.
 

AdironRider

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It seems the affordable skiing dream has been and continues to be a way lots of folks learn to ski, including plenty here.

I really hope the, "I am the most important thing on this planet" mentality swiftly dies after that generation.
I'm optimistic that it will.

Doubtful.

On an instinctual level, literally every lifeform is going to look out for itself. Good luck eliminating human nature.

Besides this is nothing new. Gen X was full of woe is me kids. The boomers always have and will continue to consider themselves the best thing since sliced bread. The generation before that literally called themselves "the greatest". If that isn't self centered, I don't know what is.
 

Scruffy

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Besides this is nothing new. Gen X was full of woe is me kids. The boomers always have and will continue to consider themselves the best thing since sliced bread. The generation before that literally called themselves "the greatest". If that isn't self centered, I don't know what is.

Bullshit. That generation lived through the great depression and then quietly went to war and ended WWII. When they
came home they quietly went back to work and literally built the middle class. If they had suffered what is now
known as PTSD , they suffered that quietly and without making a stink about it. Sure, holding stuff inside may have
resulted in other issues relating to self destructive behaviors, and perhaps their families paid a price for their
stoical pride, but they never touted their own horn. The term "Greatest Generation" was only recently coined by Tom Brokaw, the
title of his book about that generation; they never called themselves that.
 

AdironRider

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Bullshit. That generation lived through the great depression and then quietly went to war and ended WWII. When they
came home they quietly went back to work and literally built the middle class. If they had suffered what is now
known as PTSD , they suffered that quietly and without making a stink about it. Sure, holding stuff inside may have
resulted in other issues relating to self destructive behaviors, and perhaps their families paid a price for their
stoical pride, but they never touted their own horn. The term "Greatest Generation" was only recently coined by Tom Brokaw, the
title of his book about that generation; they never called themselves that.

A lot of them also ignored their boomer kids, who naturally overcompensated and gave every millennial a trophy.

The point is this is the same old story. Old guy thinks kids today are soft.

I’m pretty sure some caveman was like well whatever kid, that wheel is just you being lazy but I invented fire.
 

Hawk

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A lot of them also ignored their boomer kids, who naturally overcompensated and gave every millennial a trophy.

The point is this is the same old story. Old guy thinks kids today are soft.

I’m pretty sure some caveman was like well whatever kid, that wheel is just you being lazy but I invented fire.

I'm with scruffy. Being 52 and a Gen Xer and looking at all the different generations, there is no question that my Father's generation, and his father judging by the stories, was without question much stronger and more giving than any following generation. The public norms, etiquettes, work ethics and selfless giving to friends and family has all but gone from our culture for the most part. Anybody that thinks otherwise is basically ignoring what is transpiring right in front of them. Actually, anybody that is 30 or under may not have experienced those people and only have their parents to go by. I firmly put the blame on where the cultural shift went and the poisoning of the current young generation on parents my age. With 22 nieces and nephews to go by plus double that in cousins, I can firmly say that what is perceived by people under 30 for being acceptable behavior for work ethic and what is owed to them has certainly changed dramatically. I was taught by my father that NOTHING is owed to me and you had to work really hard with long hours to get ahead. Also you always helped people in need weather you donate or pitch in a hand. That is certainly not the norm today. Fact.
 

AdironRider

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I'm with scruffy. Being 52 and a Gen Xer and looking at all the different generations, there is no question that my Father's generation, and his father judging by the stories, was without question much stronger and more giving than any following generation. The public norms, etiquettes, work ethics and selfless giving to friends and family has all but gone from our culture for the most part. Anybody that thinks otherwise is basically ignoring what is transpiring right in front of them. Actually, anybody that is 30 or under may not have experienced those people and only have their parents to go by. I firmly put the blame on where the cultural shift went and the poisoning of the current young generation on parents my age. With 22 nieces and nephews to go by plus double that in cousins, I can firmly say that what is perceived by people under 30 for being acceptable behavior for work ethic and what is owed to them has certainly changed dramatically. I was taught by my father that NOTHING is owed to me and you had to work really hard with long hours to get ahead. Also you always helped people in need weather you donate or pitch in a hand. That is certainly not the norm today. Fact.

So you think kids are lazy these days? Thanks for illustrating my point.
 

Hawk

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Look I don't know what you do or where you come from. But In a general sense I don't think, I know. I hire and manage tons of them. Yes it is a generalization but the percentages of "lazy" or as they call it now, unmotivated young workers is on the rise. This is discussed in most upper level discussion groups or management seminars. Also no one today wants to work 40 hours a week or god forbid Saturdays. It was common 20 years ago that most people worked at least 50 and a large percentage worked more. It was expected. This whole Quality of life balance thing only took place over the last 10 years or so. So I guess my generalization is more accurate than yours lets say.
 

abc

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Time has changed (and has always been changing all along)

Calling the youngsters "lazy" is itself a sign of entitlement.

I grew up in a 3rd world country. The hardship people endure over there would be unthinkable for even your grandfather! Does that mean YOU and your father are lazy? Noooo!

Why do I say that? Because this country is so rich ONLY PARTLY because your father and grandfather work hard. A really BIG part of the success was they work SMART!

I'm not just talking about technology here. But also systems and environment they work in that allows innovation to flourish.

Yeah, right, all the safety protection had made us "soft". But you want to go back to the "hard old days"? Be my guest. How many straight skis do you still have? ;)
 
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