How long will Vermont’s Sugarbush Resort be celebrating its 60th anniversary?
If the 50th is any indication, figure 10 years, but since Sugarbush is canine friendly we can count the time in dog years.
Sugarbush turned 50 during the 2008-09 season and the sign on the Valley House base lodge noting the occasion lingered for 10 years until it was replaced this season with a 60.
Bring Your Dog, Or a Photo
About the dogs. Sugarbush owner Win Smith is big on dogs . . . make that big dogs. His late Bernese Mountain Dog Rumble was a constant companion.
Rumble was beloved by Sugarbush guests, especially the kids and his dog house located outside the Timbers restaurant at the base of Lincoln Peak was a popular landmark. Rumble died two winters ago and Timbers was renamed Rumble’s Kitchen in his honor. It has a wall near the entrance where guests can hang photos of their own canine buddies.
The Clay Brook Hotel, located a swinging dog’s tail distance from Rumble’s Kitchen has dog friendly units. There is a non-refundable cleaning fee of $109.
John Egan, Sugarbush Director of Fun
I first met Egan at a Sugarbush media event in 2003. He offers private coaching at the resort for a fee, but was giving free samples that day. I was too intimidated to ski through the woods with one of the pioneers of extreme skiing, but my friend Ski Bum Bob Levitsky, who was then known for his bright yellow one-piece suit, was game.
Egan took a look at Ski Bum Bob, laughed and said he had a suit just like that and it barely lasted a week. When Ski Bum Bob came out of the trees with Egan, his banana suit was shredded, never to be worn again. Yup, we friends of Ski Bum Bob owe Egan a debt of gratitude for putting that suit out of its misery.
Ten years later I stuck a video camera in Egan’s face and here are the results.
As noted in the video. Egan will customize his program to a skier’s level so there is no need to be intimidated. I declined the offer back in 2003 because I didn’t want to slow anyone down.
I got another opportunity to make turns with Egan and his brother Dan two years ago during a group celebratory ski event at Stowe, also in Vermont, after the brothers were inducted together into the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Hall of Fame.
A New Home for Vermont Adaptive Ski & Sports
While the Egans and I stayed on groomers at Stowe, I’ve just gone off-piste on subject matter here on the interweb.
Back to Sugarbush . . . It addition to the history and the fun, Sugarbush is making some serious news up in the Green Mountain State.
Vermont Adaptive Ski & Sports will be breaking ground at Sugarbush’s Mt. Ellen base area for the second of three permanent adaptive sports facilities in the state.
Vermont Adaptive Ski & Sports is a nationally recognized organization that empowers people of all abilities through inclusive sports and recreational programming regardless of ability to pay. The organization does amazing work with people of all ages with cognitive, developmental, physical and emotional disabilities.
Why Ski Sugarbush?
Sugarbush is located near the center of the Northeast’s vast selection of ski resorts, so why, aside from dogs, fun and opportunities for the disabled, choose Sugarbush?
Sugarbush spokesman John Bleh explained, “What’s interesting about Sugarbush is that because of its location you have to pass a ski resort from basically any direction to get here. The type of people who end up choosing this mountain are the type of people who really want to be here.
“Whether it’s because of the top-flight terrain, the vibrant local community, our guest service or being one of the few independently owned and operated resorts left in the country, guests make the extra effort to drive past other ski areas to come here, and that creates a really strong sense of camaraderie at the resort.”
While the new anniversary sign looks durable enough for a ten year run, now is a good time to visit.
“There’s a lot of history packed into the last 60 years of Sugarbush, so in celebration we’re bringing back a number of old-time favorite events this spring like the Waiter Challenge, Snow Golf Classic, and Sloshwicking, which is an old classic Sugarbush race involving a ski, a snowshoe, and a broom,” Bleh said.
And not to worry. Even if you can’t make it over to Sugarbush this season, you’ve got 9 more years until the 70th celebration.
Martin Griff is an East Coast ski bum. A journalist by education and profession, he shares his thoughts, impressions, experiences and those things that puzzle him with Braveskimom.com throughout the ski season.
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