While it didn't snow a whole ton here in December it certainly was a fun month for many here at Granite Peak!
Mother Nature did come around and give us a White Christmas (it was the weakest one by my standards barely an inch but enough to declare it White) as well as a few inches during the week here and there, that did help out our snowmaking team!
Since New Year's Day it seems we've been in this ever long frozen fog which has left our resort covered in some really cool rime ice and has dropped some light snow too. It is quite beautiful. Here are a few shots from one of our ski patrol team members - Jonathan Fisher (no relation).
Speaking of patrol I'd like to commend this group for continuing to keep our hill safe. They are mostly all volunteers and provide care to guest young and old. Many of them are in the medical field and are starting to receive vaccinations which I'm absolutely thrilled about as these individuals deserve it. Since the Holidays began I've been thinking about how we could give back to our patrol team but also to all those out there who have been fighting to keep us all safe during these difficult pandemic times. Insert - FIRST RESPONDER FRIDAYS our new promotion as a little token of our gratitude.
As a little token of our gratitude to all First Responders out there who have risked their lives to give care to those who are ill or have battled the COVID-19 pandemic we are pleased to offer for this season only - 50% OFF all day lift tickets and rentals to all First Responders on Fridays. This offer is available to all US first responders and emergency personnel - including law enforcement, EMTs, paramedics, medical professionals, firefighters and military personnel. In order to receive this discount you must show ID at a designated First Responder ticket window and we will verify your status through Sheer ID.
We'll also give each first responder a cool Red Granite Peak Buff to have while they are here so that you, I, our staff can simply say thank you. I can't take credit for this idea though that would have been an old friend from back east and my college days who is now the editor of Ski Area Management magazine - Dave Meeker.
Hopefully some of our Aspirus & Marshfield Hospital workers can attend, our close friends at SAFER, who provide us with Ambulance services, Marathon County Sheriffs, firefighters, police, and many more can visit us over the next three to four months!
Fridays will also feature a Fish Fry in the Historic Chalet for dinner! I'm so thrilled with how things have been working out inside that Chalet with new fireplaces, menu and seating.
Keeping the Historic Chalet in mind -starting this week we are going to open up Historic on Wednesday nights for our Wisconsin Wednesday Nights featuring après style food - wings, pretzels, pizza, onion rings, Wisconsin Beer Specials and discounts on Time Keeper Wisconsin style Old Fashions from the barrel.
Personal note - I have to say I'm not a huge fan of these (I like the Time Keeper Bourbon - those guys do some great spirits) I just like straight booze - I don't get the "additional wash" but whatever is Wisconsin tradition is cool with me!
Wednesdays also feature our Adult Race League in conjunction with the Granite Peak Ski Team. There is still time to register and create a team. Every resort I've been at has had one of these and they are super fun.
Personal Note: Sorry I've already (along with my wife) been recruited to the Sheppard & Schaller Team. I'll maybe, maybe race a gate or two but mostly I'm just here for the beer though. No speed suits for me just black vests and radios! :)
This weekend you'll see a ton of kids out here! It's Family Fest #1 and we'll have Fireworks on Saturday night again, Groomers on Display in our base area and a brand new event for our little guys and girls. The Granite Grom Jam. Grommet Jams were an event I founded during my stint at Mount Snow and it seems my old resort has done away with them so I'm taking em with me. Kids 12 & under can sign up (limit 50) on Sunday and we'll have a mini-park set up on Hot Cocoa with small features. Our team is going to do a fun morning of instruction, break for lunch then have a fun 2 hour competition in the afternoon. I love it. We promote the competition but it's really fun and more prizes are handed out in the raffle than on the podium.
Sunday night also brings back our Ski 4 Youth Program with a new twist - Little Legends. This $99 3- week program is designed for our local kids in mind with a 3pm - 5pm program. It features two hours of instruction, with lift tickets and helmets included. Know a little guy or girl out there who is looking to hit the slopes cheap? This is it.
Finally we are still going to be making snow but the last few nights and days have not been ideal. We still have more work to do on the pitch for Western Frontier, Infinity and we still have to get after Slalom. We will bolster up our base depths as well along the way. This week just didn't hit the button for me. High humidity, fog, and a very tired team. We all needed a little breather and Mother Nature did truly help out there. Had we made snow with this dense fog the last few days we probably would have created a snow storm in downtown Wausau, Rhinelander and the surrounding area. The moisture in the air was just too dense.
We will wait for another day / night it is after all only January 5. We've got 4 months left to go!
Happy New Year. See you on the Mountain.
P.S. Thanks to Halley O'Brien and the "Snow Report Show presented by Ski Magazine" for featuring my son Ronan and Granite Peak's "Ronan Report" in the latest episode. Halley and Ronan both crack me up. If you don't subscribe to her show I highly suggest it! Halley and I worked together at Mount Snow over 15 years ago! Dang.
General Manager, Marketing Guy, Skier, Husband, Father, Friend of the Outdoors.