Okemo Bounces Back from a Slow Start to Winter

By AlpineZone News |
Mar 02 2007 - 02:45 PM

LUDLOW, VERMONT — Okemo Mountain Resort experienced its fourth-best February vacation week on record and broke several business-level records in various departments ??“ including its biggest day on record for skier visits, Sunday, Feb. 18.

“A lot of pent-up demand was released in the marketplace,” said Okemo Director of Marketing Scott Clarkson. “It’s amazing what a snowstorm leading up to a holiday week can bring.”

Despite successful snowmaking efforts that created a base depth of up to 30 inches and saw 90 percent of terrain open at Okemo prior to the vacation week, skier visits were off substantially in mid-January. Then, following a snowstorm that dropped more than two feet of snow on Okemo and covered the backyards of skiers all over New England, business levels at the south-central Vermont resort soared, providing Okemo with its biggest day in the resort’s 51-year history. February 18, saw skier visits 10 percent ahead of the same day last year and 2.2 percent better than the best day on record. The record was previously set on February 20, 2005, also on the Sunday of President’s Day Weekend.

Some of the most dramatic increases in business levels over the vacation period were seen in Okemo’s Cutting Edge Learning Center. Group lessons were up 12 percent compared to last year. New records were set for Young Mountain Explorers, 7- to 14-year-olds ??“ up 20 percent, with more than 1,500 participants. Adventure Workshops for intermediate and expert skiers, 7 and older, saw an increase of 87 percent. Mini Stars, for 3- and 4-year-olds, saw a 100 percent increase in participation during the vacation period.

In the spirit of the old adage, “there’s no such thing as inappropriate weather, just inappropriate clothing,” Okemo’s Snowsports Shops logged a record week for retail sales. More than 200 people purchased new helmets. The shops sold nearly 1,100 goggles, 2,700 neck warmers and face masks, and 8,000 hand-and-toe warmers.

With March being everyone’s favorite month of the ski season, Okemo hopes to make up for the slow start of winter by welcoming skiers and snowboarders to some of the finest conditions and coverage in New England. Longer hours of daylight and warmer temperatures mean that spring skiing is close at hand. This year, with the early start of daylight-saving time, the spring snow will be corning up that much later in the day and skiers can get more out of a day on the slopes.

More information about Okemo Mountain Resort may be obtained by calling (802) 228-1600 or by visiting okemo.com.