CHAMPION, Pennsylvania ??вЂќ After 74 years of ownership, the Dupre family has agreed to sell Seven Spring Mountain Resort to another long-time family business from the region, the Nutting family. The announcement was made by Robert Nutting, current Chief Executive Officer of the family-operated Ogden Newspapers. Financial terms of the family-to-family transaction were not disclosed.
Seven Springs has grown from a single tow rope in 1932 into the number one rated mountain resort in the mid-Atlantic region and Pennsylvania’s largest ski and four-season resort. Each year the resort hosts approximately 1.2 million overnight guests and visitors who visit the resort for skiing and snow sports during the winter season, an 18-hole mountain-top golf course during the spring, summer and fall, and vacation packages throughout the year. Seven Springs also hosts approximately 1,000 meetings, conferences and banquet groups per year.
The Nutting family has pledged to continue the Dupre family’s long-term commitment to the future growth and success of the resort.
“Since Adolph and Helen Dupre purchased their first plot of land in 1932, Seven Springs has always been a family-run, family-first destination,” Scott Bender, Seven Springs President and Chief Operating Officer said. “That focus will not change under the Nuttings. They are strong supporters of the communities in which they live and work and their holdings are part of a family business. Their cultural fit and dedication to quality was essential in our decision-making process.”
“The window to a world of opportunity has been opened for Seven Springs today. I am extremely excited for the staff, homeowners and guests of Seven Springs. I am confident the Nutting family will carry on the Seven Springs legacy and take the resort to a new level,” commented Herman Dupre, former 40- year CEO of Seven Springs.
“We have been admirers of the Dupre family and Seven Springs for many years. Their insistence that Seven Springs be a family-first resort will not change under my family’s ownership,” Robert Nutting said. “Our commitment to excellence in customer service and willingness to invest in improved amenities will be the building blocks for the long-term success of Seven Springs.”
Robert Nutting expressed confidence in the current management team and their vision for the future growth of the resort. The Nutting family’s ownership strategy will be to build on that vision by investing in improved resort amenities. Robert Nutting also pledged to continue with the resort’s current support for a limited resort gaming license.
“The possibility of limited gaming did not play a major role in our decision to purchase the resort,” Robert Nutting said. “However, we owe it to our management team and staff, the strong supporters in the community and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to continue to pursue it. We also owe it to the 355 people that it will employ and to the community that will benefit from the more than $50 million in added tax revenue.”
With approximately 1,500 full and part time employees, Seven Springs is already the largest private employer in both Somerset and Fayette counties, paying out more than $21 million in annual payroll and benefits. Seven Springs estimates that the addition of limited gaming will create 355 new jobs and generate approximately $126 million a year in revenue into the local economy.
Prior to the public announcement, Robert Nutting met with a large group of employees to personally express his plans for the resort’s long-term growth as a four-season family destination resort as well as his family’s passion for skiing, the outdoors and the region.
“He and his family were very well received. The fact that he grew up skiing on the slopes of Seven Springs was a point of excitement for our employees,” Bender said. “Our employees understand that the Nuttings’ commitment to the resort’s long-term success as a four-season resort will only enhance the resort’s employment opportunities.”
Seven Springs Mountain Resort can accommodate more than 5,000 overnight guests in its 418-room, 10-story high-rise hotel, nearly 1,000 condominiums and town homes, five cabins and 20 chalets. The massive main lodge complex houses multiple restaurants, lounges, over 60,000 square feet of conference space, indoor miniature golf, swimming, a bowling center, arcades and more than a dozen specialty shops and boutiques. Other recreational pursuits that appeal to guests include sleigh rides, horseback riding, children’s programs, dining, hiking, biking and a variety of year-round recreational activities.
“Seven Springs truly is a great place to visit and work. With such a rich history, I constantly hear stories from guests who recall experiences from years of skiing, attending corporate functions or family weekend getaways,” Bender explained. “So many people have a place in their heart for Seven Springs because they have literally grown up with the place.”
The Nuttings have been frequent visitors of Seven Springs for generations. Robert Nutting’s father, Ogden Nutting, would make the short trip from the family’s home in Wheeling, West Virginia with the family to Seven Springs during the winter ski season. It was during these trips that Ogden Nutting passed along his love for skiing, and his admiration for the Dupre family and their success in building the resort over three generations.
“This is especially exciting for me. My father passed along his passion for skiing and the outdoors here at Seven Springs. I am thrilled to be able to pass that same experience and appreciation on to my three daughters,” Robert Nutting said. “As a lifelong fisherman, a director of the West Virginia chapter of the Nature Conservancy and past chapter president and current member of Trout Unlimited, I am very passionate about the outdoors.”
Ogden Newspapers’ Topeka magazine affiliate, Ogden Publications, is currently the country’s largest and most influential media company in the conscientious environmental lifestyle field. The company’s publications include Mother Earth News, Utne, Natural Homes, Grit and American Life and Traditions. “We are very passionate about sharing the value of responsible living and will be good stewards of Seven Springs and its 5,500 acres of pristine land,” Nutting emphasized.
In addition to his role at Seven Springs and Wheeling, West Virginia-based Ogden Newspapers, Nutting serves as Chairman of the Board for the Pittsburgh Pirates, another historic institution in the region.
“I am proud of my family’s involvement with the Pirates and I am looking forward to continuing in my current role and being a part of the Pirates for years to come,” Nutting said. “Seven Springs and the Pittsburgh Pirates have a great deal in common. Both are strong and important institutions in the region with long histories and bright futures. Both have also built a well deserved reputation for delivering excellent customer service and a fan experience that is unparalleled.”
The Nutting family already has a significant presence in the region. The family publishes 21 daily newspapers and 20 phone books delivering to more than one million households within a four-hour drive of the resort.
“My family is absolutely committed to this region for the long term, as is shown by our commitment to Ogden Newspapers, our involvement with the Pittsburgh Pirates, and now the purchase of Seven Springs Mountain Resort,” Nutting added.