Top Five Fridays - June 24, 2016 // Ski Industry News
#1: New Indoor Ski Center Open in Denver:
Live in Denver and have a friend who’s been wanting to learn how to ski, but you’re feeling reluctant to give up a day of skiing to help them learn the basics? Well then you’ll be excited to hear about SNOBAHN, a year round indoor ski area that’s just opened in Centennial, CO. Using dry slope and what we’ll call “treadmill technology,” SNOBAHN’s facilities offer multiple slopes that are perfect for beginners to learn the fundamentals of skiing on. While the “terrain” is pretty stagnant and would probably bore all but the most obsessive expert skiers, it does lend itself perfectly to those who want to learn to ski without having to deal with cold weather, variable terrain, expensive equipment rentals, or the social anxiety that can come with being a novice. So if you’ve got a friend who you know is going to bother you to teach them how to ski next winter, we’d recommend getting their lessons started this Summer at SNOBAHN to by the time snow falls again your friend will already be an expert!
#2: Russian Director to Build War Themed Ski Resort:
Here’s one we’ll file under, “Wait, Really?” News broke this week from Russia that famous director Nikita Mikhalkov has plans for a brand new $110 Million ski resort. That’s not the weird part though. What makes this new resort concept unique is that he’s planning to go with a World War II theme. Mikhalkov explains, “Ski slopes will be located on an imitated battlefield, marked with barbed wire, but it will be made of rubber… there will also be burnt tanks, but you won’t get injured bumping on them.” As you might guess, the props themselves will be from his previous films, guaranteeing a realism beyond what you’d see at ordinary theme parks. So what’s the point of all this, why bother making a war themed ski resort? Well, Mikhalhov’s vision is to create a resort that will ensure the “patriotic upbringing” of Russia’s youth. Interesting.
#3: Jackson Hole Has Biggest Wealth Disparity in United States:
Yup, you read that right. It’s certainly not new news that there’s significant wealth disparity in a ski town- that’s the unfortunate reality of living where most people vacation. Still, it’s startling to hear that Jackson, Wyoming has the number one biggest wealth disparity in the United States. According to a recent study from the Economic Policy Institute, the top 1% of earners owned a staggering 68.3% of the income. That’s a ridiculous number, especially considering the metropolis with the second most wealth disparity, Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk, CT, gave 42.7% of its income to the top 1%. That’s nearly a 26% difference between the two most economically uneven metropolises. Or looked at another way, the top 1% of owners make approximately 213 times the average income of the other 99%. Combine this news with Jackson’s current housing crisis and it’s enough to make you wonder why anyone would ever move to such a place. And then, in a weird sort of way, you realize how powerful the sport of skiing is that it still draws people to what should be a city to avoid, and they do so happily.
#4: Powdr Corp Announces Plans for Woodward Park City:
If you’ve been keeping up with the blog lately, it might seem like Powdr Corp is starting to take over the ski industry. From their acquisition of Eldora Mountain Resort, to our purely speculative idea that they might buy Jay Peak and/or Burke Mountain Resort, it would sure seem that Powdr Corp is on the move. Now, they’ve announced plans to build a new Woodward facility in Park City, UT. Already active in four cities across the United States, Woodward facilities offer action sports playgrounds and camps that enable and develop young action sports athletes’ abilities. The announcement of their planned Park City location would bring their total two five Woodward campuses, and would give Park City residents the opportunity to cross train for skiing and snowboarding throughout the summer. While Woodward Park City is still in the planning phase and hasn’t yet set an opening date, it looks as though Powdr Corp is confident that the Park City government will welcome their business with open arms.