Waterville Valley Resort’s new Communications Manager Whitney Vos penned a post on the ski resort’s blog that really resonates with me.
When I first moved to Waterville Valley in 1981, I figured I’d stay a year until my fiance (now husband) finished up his degree at Plymouth State. It didn’t take long for us to fall in love with the Valley and the mountains that surround it and we just couldn’t leave.
Like many Waterville employees, we worked long hours and multiple jobs in order to make this Valley our home. A year turned into two, then three. Harry had worked his way through college as a painting contractor, and his painting and home repair business was well established. We bought some land in Thornton and drew out a house plan on a cocktail napkin at the Willliam Tell restaurant. Through the cacophony of chainsaws, excavators, nail guns, hammers and lumber deliveries, our house took shape and we realized we had laid down roots.
Then came children. We were so lucky that I had a wonderful boss, Tom Corcoran, who valued my work and contributions to the Waterville Valley Resort team. After my 6-month maternity leave I told him that I wouldn’t be able to return to work because I couldn’t find reasonably priced childcare. He immediately opened an employee daycare at the ski area (which later moved to the building that now houses the BBTS admin offices) and offered subsidized daycare for employee’s children – the most convenient, safe and fun place for our kids to spend their days while we parents worked. I don’t think any of us became rich, but we had (have!) an enviable quality of life and our lives were enriched by our experiences here in Waterville Valley.
Whitney’s blog post brought me back to those early days and I realized that not much has changed. In the words of Waterville’s Nathaniel Goodrich, “Waterville is continuance…”
Five Reasons Why the Ski Community is Awesome
Whitney Vos, Waterville Valley Resort
After finishing my first season working in the ski industry and becoming a part of a community of skiers and riders, I have been thinking a lot about what makes this group of people so special. Then during our Community Clean-Up Day and BBQ it all became very clear. Here are just some examples of why the ski community is so seriously, ridiculously, high-fives-all-around awesome!
1. They really, really love their slopes…
While for some people winter is long over, a skier’s love for the mountains isn’t limited to when there is snow on the ground. Whether loyal to the same trails they learned on or always checking out somewhere new, summertime skiers can be found hiking, camping, or biking their favorite trails, counting the days until flakes start to fall. So when given the opportunity to give back or just get out on the slopes, we knew who to count on. By popular demand we opened clean-up day to the public for the second time and I was amazed but not surprised to see the amount of enthusiasm from the community. Families excitedly claimed their favorite trails and competed to fill the most trash bags, well exceeding the one-bag requirement earning them a free lunch. While it can be discouraging to see people litter on your favorite hill, you can bet that there are many more people in the skiing community that care enough to come back after the snow melts and help keep our trails beautiful year after year. To all those people, all I can say is thank you!
2. They know how to have a good time.
The ski industry is one of the most weather-obsessed groups of people on the planet. We all dream of the perfect powder day. We’ve all kicked ourselves for leaving that extra layer at home. But when it comes down to having a fun day on the slopes, some things are just a bit more important. On Saturday we saw the weather change from sunshine to mist to drizzle and then back to gorgeous sun, and that was all before lunch. But these smiling faces persisted. Garbage bags were re-purposed as ponchos, sneakers were traded for boots, and the sunshine was celebrated even more when it finally appeared. It turns out that as important as the conditions or weather are, they aren’t the most important factor when it comes to having a fun day with your family and friends.