Weak snow, no problem
February 17, 2012
Slow snow earlier this season had Park City locals worried that keeping tourism up this year would be tough. While lodging numbers overall have been up and down, President’s Day weekend is expected to pull in numbers on par with last year.
"Its just one of the strong weeks during the year for Park City," said Park City Chamber/Visitors Bureau President Bill Malone. "I think it feels similar to Christmas. We can expect a good boom in business for restaurants, shopping, hotels. It’s a strong weekend and we keep pretty busy."
Sunday is expected to be the busiest day over the holiday weekend, hitting an estimated 16,852 guests.
"Last year was a fabulous year," said Paul Christensen, the general manager of the Park City Marriott, "but this year President’s Day is equal to last year, which pretty much means full. And you can’t do better than full."
Kelley Davidson, the manager of the Goldener Hirsch Inn, said his hotel was also keeping up with last year. "We had strong reservations with lots of returning guests, a lot of them families," Davidson said. "One of the best seasons we’ve had."
On the subject of snow, Davidson said he thought locals were too critical of the conditions, that not every year could be like last year.
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"As locals, we’re always commenting on snow," he said, "but guests are extremely happy with trails. Guest are coming in saying they were exceptionally pleased with the snow."
Reservations are even booming for the Goldener Hirsch Inn restaurant, which is almost completely booked for dinner service with reservations spilling into lunchtime.
"We may be sold out," Davidson said. "We don’t know yet, but either way we feel really positive about the numbers we’re seeing."
Malone said the fact that this year is keeping pace with last year’s record snow fall means that word is getting out that there’s still plenty of snow to be had. He expects Utahns to take advantage of the long weekend too, hitting one of the three resorts in Park City.
"The way I look at it, we’re almost dead even with projections from last year," Malone said. "That’s a strong message about this season’s success because last year was such a good season for snow."
As far as people on the streets, Malone said locals better be prepared because if last year is any indication on this year, it’s going to be crowded.