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Saddleback Mountain Cooperative - Information Thread & Survey

salsgang

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For Maine based Alpinezoner's - There is a presentation / Q&A from the Saddleback Mountain Foundation group at University of Maine - Farmington North Dining Hall at 5:30pm tonight (Monday, November 14).
 

salsgang

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Peter Stein (lead organizer) sent out an email update yesterday. $400k memberships in Escrow. There is a donor(s) matching 1 to 1 first $600k so $1MM in the door. Still working through mechanics of taking credit cards. They expect to release more info on the operating business plan "soon".


Still a long way to go and things never go in a straight line or as planned... but overall this is an impressive community effort to date IMO.


I posted the entire update message on my blog.


http://www.maineskifamily.com/2016/11/november-22-update-saddleback-community-resort.html
 
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So just 10% of the needed funds (letting off the matching) raised so far. That has to be disappointing.

Is there a clear sense what will happen to the raised money if they fail to reach their goal or if another buyer steps in?
 

joshua segal

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So just 10% of the needed funds (letting off the matching) raised so far. That has to be disappointing.

Is there a clear sense what will happen to the raised money if they fail to reach their goal or if another buyer steps in?

It's in an escrow account: It will be refunded.

The organizers are quite happy and see things as being pretty much on target. Putting together an organization of this size is non-trivial and it involves all kinds of legal requirements. A number of people are reviewing information the more detailed plans with their own legal and financial teams before diving in.

IMO, this season is in jeopardy as there is no planned prep activity for prepping the Mountain to open that is going on - and probably won't happen until the closing. That being said, Peter insists that something will be available in some form by Feb.
 

mbedle

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For you guys that are close to this, what exactly does this text from their email yesterday mean?

"For those that might be confused, we are no longer entertaining the concept of selling equity ownership in our community resort as a bridge to ownership by the non-profit. This change in course takes us directly to a closing where the Saddleback Mountain Foundation purchases the land and ski area assets and the Saddleback Mountain Community Resort (SMCR, LLC) is a wholly owned subsidiary."
 

salsgang

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For you guys that are close to this, what exactly does this text from their email yesterday mean?

"For those that might be confused, we are no longer entertaining the concept of selling equity ownership in our community resort as a bridge to ownership by the non-profit. This change in course takes us directly to a closing where the Saddleback Mountain Foundation purchases the land and ski area assets and the Saddleback Mountain Community Resort (SMCR, LLC) is a wholly owned subsidiary."

I am not one of the organizers (I just help spread the word) so this is a bit of a educated guess. The original plan was for the SMCR (the organization that is providing the memberships) to raise the $4mm via resort memberships (smaller money) and equity shares (bigger money) to enter a purchase and sale agreement with the Berry's (mountain owners) and complete the purchase. At that point the non-profit would be formed and the ownership of the mountain would transfer to the non-profit.

I think it was done this way as setting up the non-profit and 501-3(c) takes some time & money... and they were making a push to get lift-serviced skiing going this winter.

While they have made great progress IMO and have received a number of resort memberships, I am estimating that the "big money" is less motivated to contribute without taking advantage of the tax break they would get with the 501-3(c). Thus they are making a push to get this set up to help them get more quickly to $4mm. This is a bit of a conjecture but my best guess.

The full text of the email can be found here:

http://www.maineskifamily.com/2016/12/december-14-update-from-saddleback-mountain-foundation.html
 
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bdfreetuna

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Got this about a week ago in email:

Dear Saddlebackers,

The slopes have been covered with snow and the woods in northern New England are all filled in.

Looking up at the mountains covered in snow just makes me even more determined than ever to get Saddleback Mountain reopened for all those who love skiing this unique place in Maine. Everyday, whether up at the mountain, in the Portland area, or places in between or beyond, I am motivated and inspired by the people who share with me their passion for Saddleback and the emotion of again being active on that mountain.

I hear in people who I meet the continued love of place and again skiing with family and friends. All have questions - what about that ambitious plan announced in the fall and reopening the ski area, what is the business plan, are you raising the money?

These are all excellent, valid questions. I want people to know I haven't wavered a bit in the vision I championed in the fall, and I want people to also know I am not out there alone. Every day since October a core group of talented, committed people have kept their shoulders to the (bull) wheel.

I so deeply regret that we couldn't get those lifts spinning for this season. We meant it and we were motivated to succeed in that goal. But even though those lifts sit idle as we come into February, I and early champions, The Trust for Public Land, the New England Forestry Foundation, and others continue to work very closely together confronting and working to overcome complex business details one question at a time.

We have added significant expertise:


The foundation has hired the Portland law firm Drummond Woodsum. We have met with the new legal team several times over the past month and are making good progress particularly around the 501(c)(3) nonprofit piece.



The foundation has hired the Litman Gerson, LLC accounting firm to ensure the numbers we are working from are rock solid.


As we continue to move forward, we are looking at how our partnerships between the Saddleback Mountain Foundation, the New England Forestry Foundation, and The Trust for Public Land can be more closely aligned and strengthened and enable a deal with the Berry family.

We have added to our roster with:


Six board members and are talking with several others to contribute their talents at this formative, historic stage.



A search for an Executive Director for the foundation and a General Manager for the resort and we have strong interest for both positions from well qualified individuals.



We have also hired an internal web developer and our new website will be available soon.



Our message and plan are becoming crystal clear.

As you can tell, we are working full speed ahead and we will touch base with you as often as we can. Thank you for your support, patience, and mostly your desire to see Saddleback Mountain back opened and community owned and controlled.


Skifully,

Peter Stein
 

Jully

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Well, they are still moving pieces around trying to get things set up. I do wish them all the best, but the lack of details as to how much money they have raised recently and a lack of communication in general in recent months has curbed my own enthusiasm a bit. Maybe I am just not looking in the right places though...
 

JDMRoma

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Could have sworn i heard there was a condo fire there last night .....or some type of fire
 

Edd

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Spending a few days at the Loaf and watching it dump out I had a depressing thought. How f*****g great would Saddleback be right now?
 

bdfreetuna

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The latest episode of keeping hope alive...

Saddleback Mountain Foundation Newsletter
March 20th, 2017





Hello Everyone,



The first thing of importance is that the skiing here in Maine is fantastic. Wednesday was an amazing powder day at Black Mountain, made possible by a fellow Saddlebacker who led an effort to raise the funds required to open the mountain for the day. This was a true demonstration of community power getting powder. Friday, The Loaf was nothing but soft powder bumps – another amazing day.


The Saddleback Mountain Foundation initiative continues to make great progress and we are increasingly positive about the outcome. Last Thursday evening, the first official board meeting of the Saddleback Mountain Foundation was held. At this meeting, we accepted the By-laws of the foundation, elected two new board members -- now bringing us to 7 -- and elected officers. All seven board members, Steve Philbrick, Carol Millhouse, Vittorio Pareto, Chad Cloutier, myself, and our two newest members, Luke Labbe and Bill Richards, were present at the meeting.


The officers of the Saddleback Mountain Foundation Board of Directors are now Carol Millhouse, Secretary; Luke Labbe, Treasurer, and Peter Stein, President and Chairman. We plan to announce our Executive Director in the near future and are actively in the process of interviewing for the General Manager position.


We also voted to allow for submission of the 501(c)(3) application and to accept the assignment of SMCR, LCC to the Saddleback Mountain Foundation. The transfer of SMCR, LLC is now in process and we hope to report its completion by the next board meeting scheduled for April 6.


This board is unwavering in its commitment to get Saddleback opened. Much of the board meeting went towards discussing our next primary task to be completed, finalizing and submitting our 501(c)(3) application. We cannot emphasize how important this document is to our future. Our goal is now to submit this document within the next month.


More news coming soon folks. Get those turns in because spring is here. Although this ski season will soon end, we are already looking forward to the next one with a heightened level of anticipation.



Skifully,

Peter
 
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