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For the week of  October 10 - 16, 2001


Sun Valley offers new skiing discount

"It’s an experiment to see if we can reenergize some local and regional skiers. We’re very hopeful, though we have no idea how this is going to work."

- Wally Huffman, Sun Valley Co. general manager

Express Staff Writer

As part of an effort to attract more local and regional skiers to the Wood River Valley, Sun Valley Co. announced Tuesday it will offer 40 days of skiing for $595.

The move comes amidst a slipping economy in the wake of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

"It’s an experiment to see if we can reenergize some local and regional skiers," Sun Valley Co. General Manager Wally Huffman said. "We’re very hopeful, though we have no idea how this is going to work."

The pass, called the 20-20 season pass, has qualifications, however. If purchased between Oct. 10 and Nov. 16, it will cost $595. If purchased after Nov. 16, it will cost $695.

Holding true to its name, the pass is good for 20 days of skiing during the off-season and 20 days during the peak season, Dec. 16 to March 31.

Those with 20-20 passes may not ski between Dec. 24 and Dec. 31 or between Feb. 16 and Feb. 22, and may not ski more than two days per week.

The pass was unveiled amidst a round of applause from Sun Valley-Ketchum Chamber of Commerce board members Tuesday afternoon.

"This is fabulous, Wally" chamber board member Theresa Comber told Huffman.

The purpose of the meeting was also to look at the larger picture, however. Chamber marketing director Carrie Schiller-Westergard said the chamber has about $63,500 left in its marketing budget that can be channeled into tapping regional skiers and visitors. The question was: How?

"I think what we’re hearing loud and clear is that we need to focus on the regional market, at least in the short term," chamber Executive Director Carol Waller said. "We’ve got a challenging situation coming up for the winter ahead."

By the meeting’s conclusion, a lot had been discussed, though little had been concluded.

Huffman said the biggest concern about the coming winter is if "something else happens" that’s akin to the Sept. 11 attacks.

"That’s the unknown, and that’s the worry," he said. "If something else happens, our share of the destination market will just disappear."

The Idaho Mountain Express is distributed free to residents and guests throughout the Sun Valley, Idaho resort area community. Subscribers to the Idaho Mountain Express will read these stories and others in this week's issue.