Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Skiers can nab deal, help airport

Alliance offers $35 lift tickets

Express Staff Writer

Sun Valley skiers will be able to take advantage of a cut-rate deal on lift tickets and rentals at the end of the month while helping to support commercial air service to Friedman Memorial Airport.

Fly Sun Valley Alliance is offering full-day adult lift tickets for $35—a 60 percent discount from the ordinary $89 ticket for Baldy—for skiers who purchase a lift ticket ahead of time for skiing on Sunday, Jan. 22.

"It's an awesome partnership with Sun Valley Resort," said Carol Waller, executive director of the Fly Sun Valley Alliance.

Sun Valley Co. has donated a limited number of lift tickets to the alliance, which will sell them to raise money for the organization. Waller declined to say how many tickets were available, but said that all the lift ticket proceeds will go to the alliance, which contributes to revenue guarantees to keep commercial air service coming to Sun Valley.

The lift tickets will be available from Jan. 11-21 for cash purchase only at local ski shops.

Sturtevants Mountain Sports in Ketchum and Hailey, the Board Bin in Ketchum and Hailey, PK's Ski and Sports in Ketchum, Formula Sports and Ski Tek in Ketchum will all have the lift tickets available.

These locations also will offer half-price discounts on rentals and demos for that day, Waller said. The discount tickets also can be used for the Dollar Mountain lifts, and will be available at Boise and Twin Falls outlets as well. There is no limit to the number of tickets anyone can buy, but the tickets will not be available on the day of the event.

Waller said the idea for the fundraiser originally came from Sun Valley Co., which offered to donate the lift tickets.

"It was an idea that came up because some other communities have done similar events for other organizations," Waller said. "[But] it was really the Sun Valley Co. who said they would be interested in an event like this one."

Waller declined to mention a fundraising goal, but said she hoped the event would be successful.

"We hope to sell out, let's put it that way!" she said, adding that the organization would likely sell all the available lift tickets. "You need to not wait until the last minute."

The community ski day will include a raffle at River Run Lodge after the mountain closes. Local businesses, airlines and Fly Sun Valley Alliance board members donated raffle prizes. Raffle tickets will be available on the day of the event for $5 each or five for $20. Those buying $35 lift tickets will also receive a two-for-one deal on raffle tickets.

Participants will be entered to win prizes that include four round-trip tickets from Alaska Airlines between Sun Valley and Los Angeles or Seattle, a ResortQuest condo rental for two people for three nights, $160 in gift certificates to local coffee houses and a Remington 12-gauge pump-action model 870 shotgun.

The raffle will take place during an après-ski party at River Run Lodge, which will feature live music by folk-blues artist Ethan Tucker.

Waller said there are no other upcoming events planned to benefit the alliance, but that she hopes the community ski day will be successful enough to become an annual attraction.

"This is a great opportunity for people who may not have been out skiing for a while and want to take advantage of the great rates," she said. "We're very excited about it, and we hope everyone will recognize what a great deal this is."

Katherine Wutz:

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