Thursday, September 22, 2016

It sure pays to advertise!

It's always with great interest and anticipation that I open the October issue of Ski Magazine to discover how its readers have ranked the resorts they have visited the previous year. Even though, deep inside, I know these results have been heavily “massaged”, I always like to check how ethical, objective and truthful the publication is...

Boosted by a multi-million investment from Vail Resorts interconnecting 7,300 skiable acres, I was hoping that Park City would make it to number 4 or 5. In fact, I expected no less from our ski town that has grown to be the largest ski area in the USA. When I began thumbing through the pages, I saw that Park City had been passed by a list of destinations that don't come even close to its offering, not to mention areas like Whitefish and Winter Park, and was relegated to spot #13, which simply was unbelievable.

To add insult to injury, a rabid commentary, compared our largest resort to a “Frankenstein-stitched” job and, if anything, showed that the local Vail Resorts and Park City Mountain bashing had now gone national. During the season, I ski almost daily and meet lots of visitors on the lifts.

All the folks I talked to have been ecstatic about the Park City improvements and its connection to Canyons. Presumably, Mr. Pugh, who also appears to be a blogger for Solitude Mountain Resort, never experienced the kind of large Alpine interconnected resorts loved by modern skiers.

Put together, these observations suggest that the survey results where somehow "rigged", the comments slanderous, and that someone was out to hurt Park City. When I looked at which resorts had advertised in the publication, Vail Resorts and its affiliates stood conspicuously absent and payed the price for not patronizing it.

As an individual resort, Park City paid even a much dearest price. With Ski Magazine, there is no longer a firewall between editorial and ad sales; it's now “pay to play”, so more than ever, it pays to advertise if you want some decent editorial!

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