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The "Sugarbush Thread"

bdfreetuna

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keep the faith
Cheddar at SB


I just watched up until Win's first segment where he discusses skier visits being flat and future challenges.

Then I remembered they have a walk-up ticket price of $129-$139 for the main ski area (Lincoln Peak).

Nobody's fault but the people setting these absurd rates. I can't afford that and if I wasn't so savvy and dedicated I'd be skiing much less on account of that too. It definitely limits my Sugarbush visits, although I'm hoping to make use of Mt Ellen $30 Thursday pretty soon.


I bet Six Flags New England and the Big E would see their visits drop too if they started charging triple digit admissions.
 
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JimG.

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My first day of skiing was at The Concord December 1962. It was my father's first day too.

My mom was already an avid skier.
 

TyWebb

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reporter should learn how to pronounce the place she is talking about. its the nev-el-eee. not the nev-elle. the nevele (eleven backwards for its 11 original owners) was not really a "ski resort". it was a catskills borscht belt spot that happened to have a lift and a few trails. it was a 4-season resort that had golf, tennis, a nice pool compound, and two hotels on the property (the fallsview was next door). i wouldn't attribute the downfall of the nevele to ski economics. the whole catskills borscht belt thing peaked in the mid 20th century and all of those places shuttered as people (mainly nyc and suburbs jewish people who were the clientele for these places) started using airplanes to travel more.

i went to summer camp 20 min away from the nevele and my parents would stay there every summer for visiting day weekend and they would take us out of camp and to the hotel pools. the fallsview next door was the site for a lot of youth group convention things i attended in middle and high school. i got to third base for the first time at the fallsview, ohhh yea.

i'm going to go back and watch the remaining 7 min of the video now, but i had to post when she called it the nev-elle.
Born in Brooklyn (1971) and b4 my parents moved us to LI ... spent a few summers @ one of the borscht belt bungalow colonies. My summer camp was in the Poconos.

As far as the video goes ... She hit on some good points and as with most luxuries, it all comes down to economics. For most 20'somethings, if you're just getting into skiing entry costs are just to high. They have less disposable income for various reasons and trying out a cold weather hobby/trip is not very high on their list. As she wrote, if you're a first time skier .. clothing, beginner package with lessons and rentals, food, transport etc .. gets expensive. If you grew up skiing and with all the mega-pass options it has become more affordable.

My parents did not ski but I got introduced to the sport by a friend whose family did. He persuaded me join the HS ski club with him and once I became an advance beginner I'd tag along with his fam on many trips. I'd only have to pay for lift and food as they always rented a home for the season.

I will say for parents with young children I never found it too expensive in Pa and other states. There are a ton of elementary school specials and discounts. I've utilized the 3rd, 4th and 5th grade passes in Pa and VT. I think next year will be my first venture into the mega pass as my youngest is in 6th now. Have some coupons but still more $$$ the I've been spending. Also hoping to go out west next year as well so the mega pass will be the way to go.

// Hope one of them purchases Blue Mt outside of Allentown as that would be great for us.
 

ducky

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The point of high walk-up rates is to drive people to buy a multi-mountain season pass. It's the business model. Epic and Ikon are under $700 if you buy early, and there's always the SB Value Pass around $500. Also, cheaper if you buy a day pass online, even in the parking lot on your phone. For me as a passholder, I'm at day 38, or about $18/day and it's only mid-Jan. Hoping to get that under $6/day by April. :spread:

Now back to the weather: Ripcord and OG were very tasty today, probably 6" overall and it was dumping right up to 4:00. Guns were on all over in preparation for MLK weekend. No woods back yet but some were doing the bike paths today.
 

ducky

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So just admit the business model is killing new skier visits instead of acting mystified by it?

For me, the season pass rate went down $350 since Vail bought Stowe and SB followed suit with reduced season pass pricing. Not sure I know anyone who buys day tickets.
 

ss20

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So just admit the business model is killing new skier visits instead of acting mystified by it?

BenediztGomez is that you?

Don't worry about growing skiing, the Asian-Invasion is happening. Skiing is becoming huge in China. I see it in the lessons I teach- there's substantially more Asian kids (and some adults) now than when I started just six years ago. Many have trickled up to Mount Snow I see as well.
 

Orca

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Then I remembered they have a walk-up ticket price of $129-$139 for the main ski area (Lincoln Peak).

Yes, I get that the day rate is a means to force skiers into passes that commit the customer to a substantial fixed expenditure (subscription model with revenue known before start of season). However, there are people that buy day tickets that are pushed away. Specific example: I refuse to invite friends to SB because I'd be obligating that person to an expenditure that I know is likely to prove a bad value.
 

ducky

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Yes, I get that the day rate is a means to force skiers into passes that commit the customer to a substantial fixed expenditure (subscription model with revenue known before start of season). However, there are people that buy day tickets that are pushed away. Specific example: I refuse to invite friends to SB because I'd be obligating that person to an expenditure that I know is likely to prove a bad value.

Agreed. Stowe does offer 10 buddy tickets with the Epic and Epic Local - 1/2 price of the posted day rate. Not sure if Ikon does the same. Our friends that visit at least don't pay for lodging plus I usually have some vouchers.

I'm not saying the sport is affordable, just more so if you buy a pass and also have the option to ski multiple resorts. It is also more affordable than three years ago.

SB does a bunch to get young people interested starting with free skiing for the local elementary schools on certain days. Additionally, high school students with good grades get free passes. The mountain was full of kids today with busses from Warren and Fayston schools. Don't forget the For20s and For30s passes. We bought our son the For20s for $329 and he got 11 days out of it over Christmas.
 

Howitzer

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Agreed. Stowe does offer 10 buddy tickets with the Epic and Epic Local - 1/2 price of the posted day rate. Not sure if Ikon does the same. Our friends that visit at least don't pay for lodging plus I usually have some vouchers.

I'm not saying the sport is affordable, just more so if you buy a pass and also have the option to ski multiple resorts. It is also more affordable than three years ago.

SB does a bunch to get young people interested starting with free skiing for the local elementary schools on certain days. Additionally, high school students with good grades get free passes. The mountain was full of kids today with busses from Warren and Fayston schools. Don't forget the For20s and For30s passes. We bought our son the For20s for $329 and he got 11 days out of it over Christmas.

The Ikon Pass comes with 10 Friends and Family tickets and the Ikon Base Pass comes with 8 Friends and Family tickets (with holiday restrictions) for 25% off the 1-day window rate.

One interesting thing of note is there is no senior discount on the Ikon or Ikon Base Pass.
 

cdskier

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The Sugarbush season pass itself also this year comes with 5* "Ski with me" tickets which give 25% off the 1 day window rate as well. (Can't remember whether it did last year or not).

And if you do anticipate having friends up, you could always pick up a quad pack (or 2) in the fall. I know some pass-holders do that. Of course if friends don't come for some reason, then you're out the money or need to find someone that needs tickets!

*Or 10 if you are a repeat passholder that purchased during the extra early "Loyalty passholder" timeframe
 

djd66

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she lost me when she said snowfall was down 40% out west,... that is complete BS
 

jaybird

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Welcome back from a momentous trip for you. We missed you !
Great recovery job by your team this week ! :thumbup:

The chair seats are just fine .. real Vermonters can handle it :snow:
 

MorningWoods

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she lost me when she said snowfall was down 40% out west,... that is complete BS

I can tell you one thing impacting young kids skiing is the club sport phenomenon. Club soccer, lacrosse, volleyball, basketball, baseball. Goes on all year long and is a major impact on people’s ability to get away for weekends. Messes with summer businesses as well. Gets worse as kids get older.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

TyWebb

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I can tell you one thing impacting young kids skiing is the club sport phenomenon. Club soccer, lacrosse, volleyball, basketball, baseball. Goes on all year long and is a major impact on people’s ability to get away for weekends. Messes with summer businesses as well. Gets worse as kids get older.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
So true. My son plays 3 sports but footie is his big one and he goes 10 months a year. I’d do all 3 days this weekend but Sat his team travels to Harrisburg for an indoor tourney. Missed many Sats past few years but he’s still at the age where I have no problem heading up to Vt. to ski on a Sun, Mon and Tues and bring any school work with us to do in the evening.
 

WinS

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Welcome back from a momentous trip for you. We missed you !
Great recovery job by your team this week ! :thumbup:

The chair seats are just fine .. real Vermonters can handle it :snow:

Thanks. If I hadn’t taken the red eye, I would have been out today but will be first thing in Friday. The Cheddar piece hit on some good points but doesn’t tell the full story. People love to say how expensive skiing is but look at the cost of going to Disney or a professional sports game! The window rate is very misleading and most people do not purchase this way any more. They are purchasing passes, products like our Quad Pack or purchasing ahead on time online at a much lower rate. So when you look at the average yield per day it is a big discount to the window rate. Consumers are smart. Chris Diamond is his new book says that we are entering a new era which will be great for the ski industry. I agree with him.
 

cdskier

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Thanks. If I hadn’t taken the red eye, I would have been out today but will be first thing in Friday. The Cheddar piece hit on some good points but doesn’t tell the full story. People love to say how expensive skiing is but look at the cost of going to Disney or a professional sports game! The window rate is very misleading and most people do not purchase this way any more. They are purchasing passes, products like our Quad Pack or purchasing ahead on time online at a much lower rate. So when you look at the average yield per day it is a big discount to the window rate. Consumers are smart. Chris Diamond is his new book says that we are entering a new era which will be great for the ski industry. I agree with him.

I need to finish that book...I have only 2 or 3 chapters left to go...

Very worthwhile read for probably almost anyone on this board.
 

mister moose

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The window rate is very misleading and most people do not purchase this way any more. They are purchasing passes, products like our Quad Pack or purchasing ahead on time online at a much lower rate. So when you look at the average yield per day it is a big discount to the window rate. Consumers are smart. Chris Diamond is his new book says that we are entering a new era which will be great for the ski industry. I agree with him.

Win -

Have you ever seen the industry, particularly New England, discuss how many skiers learn at feeder hills vs larger resorts?

With respect to the dismal retention rate you mentioned, I see a lot of casual experimenters giving it a try at the resort, like you might try tubing, a zip line, or get a ride on a horse drawn sleigh. It's one activity of many on a Vermont weekend for someone who has no long term interest, doesn't like the cold, is not involved in any other outdoor activity whatsoever, any part of the year. The likelihood of retention on that person is very low right out of the gate. For those people a ski lesson is a day's diversion, nothing more. And how does the industry measure retention if they spend their first lesson with you and their second and third closer to home in NJ? I bet the real number is higher than what you measure.

I wonder what the retention rate is on kids that were introduced to skiing by their parents. Or High School kids that take more than one bus trip to a resort. Or with kids that go to a feeder hill after school once a week for 6 weeks?
 

Orca

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The Sugarbush season pass itself also this year comes with 5* "Ski with me" tickets which give 25% off the 1 day window rate as well. (Can't remember whether it did last year or not).

And if you do anticipate having friends up, you could always pick up a quad pack (or 2) in the fall. I know some pass-holders do that. Of course if friends don't come for some reason, then you're out the money or need to find someone that needs tickets!

*Or 10 if you are a repeat passholder that purchased during the extra early "Loyalty passholder" timeframe

I am an SB passholder. Didn't know about this benefit.
 
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