Vail reaffirms commitment to local community
November 16, 2013
I read with interest John Cumming’s recent Guest Editorial on November 9 highlighting the long-term commitment that Park City Mountain Resort has made to the community. John is right that the relationship between a ski resort and its community is critical to everyone’s long-term success.
I have been fortunate to enjoy a life-long career in the ski business, which began at Sugarbush Resort in 1976. I served as President of Canyons from 1997-2002, joined Vail Resorts in 2002 and became President of the Company’s Mountain Division in 2008. Throughout my career managing several different resorts and living in several special mountain communities, I have learned that a resort cannot deliver an exceptional guest experience and be successful unless it honors and invests in the mountain, its employees and the community. Vail Resorts has an exemplary track record in achieving this balance, which I believe is the primary driver of our Company’s success. It requires a high level of competency and transparency. Do what you say you’re going to do and do it well. I could not be more proud of Vail Resorts in this regard.
Our Company is incredibly excited to be operating Canyons and joining the Park City community. This is one of the greatest ski towns in the world and we believe there are still extraordinary opportunities yet to come for both Canyons and the entire community. We are committed to doing our part to realize those opportunities. As part of our transaction with Canyons, our Company inherited a lawsuit which had been initiated by PCMR. I regret that this dispute has caused much heartache and uncertainty for so many who rely on the vibrancy and economic vitality of this town. While I cannot speak to many of John’s comments regarding the actions of PCMR relating to this dispute, the good news is that our judicial system will ultimately come to some conclusions on these issues.
If, at the end of the judicial process it is determined that PCMR was right and their actions appropriate, then Talisker and our Company will respect that decision and ensure that everyone moves forward together to rebuild the highest levels of trust and collaboration. If, however, PCMR is found by the Court to have been wrong in its numerous public assertions about their actions, I hope that they will also do the right thing for our community.
I was disheartened to read that even if the Court rules that PCMR does not have rights to operate on the vast majority of its ski terrain, John feels the need to highlight that PCMR owns numerous other assets that are "not for sale". A great ski resort needs many things, and while ski terrain is clearly the most important, it’s not enough. I sincerely hope that in the end, cooler heads will prevail and we all can come together to ensure that the right result is reached for our guests, employees and the entire community of Park City. We all want the highest level of long-term stewardship for our community, to ensure the continuation of everything that makes this place so special. Vail Resorts is absolutely committed to doing everything we can to make that possible.