| VailDaily.com

The swap must go on: Vail Ski & Snowboard Swap adjusts event for COVID-19 safety

COVID-19 restrictions have caused many nonprofits to cancel fundraisers this year or turn to virtual events, but for Ski & Snowboard Club Vail, a 50-year-old event did not have to break tradition.

The annual Vail Ski Swap will still be held at Dobson Ice Arena this weekend, but it will look different than it has the past five decades. 

The swap has historically been made possible through the support of approximately 15 vendors in addition to individual community members selling gear at the Swap.

“With COVID-19 indoor restrictions limited to 100 people or less at the time SSCV needed to make a decision as to whether or not to proceed with the swap there was very little, if any, room left for customers after taking into account the vendor staff and volunteers needed to run the event,” said Sharon Schmidt, director of advancement at Ski & Snowboard Club Vail.

“In order to minimize the financial risk of proceeding with the swap, the club made the very difficult decision not to hold the Swap in 2020,” Schmidt said.

That news traveled to the different vendors who participate each year in the event and one vendor stepped up with a solution.

“One of SSCV’s longtime swap vendors, Ski Pro, offered to run the Swap this year as the single, third-party vendor, thus opening up significantly more space for customers with no risk to SSCV,” Schmidt said.  

“We are grateful for Ski Pro’s support in keeping the Swap tradition going in 2020,” Schmidt said.

“It is important to Ski Pro because of the decades of support for the Swap that we have given and will continue to do so,” said Jack Kannapel, of Ski Pro. “The Swap is important to the community because it supports the activities of many snowsports enthusiasts locally and supports the club’s athletes,” Kannapel said.

“Proceeds from the swap help enable Ski & Snowboard Club Vail to be able to provide the level of quality commensurate to the needs and goals of all our athletes so they can become the best they can be by helping to support the operations of SSCV as well as financial aid in the current fiscal year,” Schmidt said.

The Swap will be different this year due to the many precautions taken to keep everyone as safe as possible. Only 100 people are allowed in the building at any time. Tickets are free but you need to go to Eventbrite to reserve a time. At press time, Thursday and Friday were sold out, but there were still times available on Saturday between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. and on Sunday between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m.

What won’t change is the variety of items that can be found and discounts on equipment you need for the winter snowsports season. Skis, snowboards, boots, bindings, poles, helmets, goggles and winter clothing will be up for grabs. 

All sales are final and major credit cards are accepted. For more information, go to vailskiswap.com. For more information about Ski & Snowboard Club Vail visit skiclubvail.org.

Annual Ski and Snowboard Club Vail Swap will look a little different this year

The 51st annual Ski and Snowboard Club Vail Swap has been around so long it’s almost a rite of passage as the valley gets ready to usher in winter. For decades, locals and those in the know have traveled to Vail in October to find deals on new and used gear for the upcoming season.

Skis, snowboards, bindings, boots and accessories are set up in sections throughout the spacious Dobson Ice Arena. Kids, teens and adults can all be outfitted in one location. A portion of the proceeds from the sale goes to help fund Ski & Snowboard Club Vail.

The Swap is historically made possible through the support of approximately 15 vendors in addition to individual community members selling gear at the Swap. Ski Pro, a long time vendor who has participated in the SSCV Swap for many years, will be putting on the event this year.

Ski Pro will still be accepting the following items between 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. on Wednesday:

  • Skis
  • Ski bindings
  • Ski boots
  • Snowboards
  • Snowboard bindings
  • Snowboard boots

Please note: Ski Pro will not accept skis with bindings that are non-indemnified; these bindings must be removed from the skis in order to sell the skis.

No used clothing or accessories will be accepted for the swap. Ski Pro will have a variety of winter clothing and accessories like goggles and gloves on hand for purchase at the swap.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, the swap won’t operate quite the same as it used to. While it will still be held at Dobson Ice Arena in Lionshead, the large venue will only be able to hold 100 people at a time, and that includes those who are organizing the event.

Tickets are free and will be available on the Eventbrite website, where you can choose the specific time frame when your ticket will get you into the swap. At press time, the event was already sold out on Thursday, but times are still available on Friday between 3 and 8 p.m., Saturday between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. and Sunday between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. Eventbrite ticket holders have priority entry, but tickets are not required. 

If you do drop off equipment in hopes of selling your items, please note that unsold equipment must be picked up at Dobson Ice Arena on Oct. 25 from 3 to 5 p.m. and Ski Pro cannot keep equipment after 5 p.m. on Sunday. Do not assume your item has sold if you can’t find your item, check the status of your item here.

All sales are final at the swap and major credit cards are accepted. For more information about the swap, go to vailskiswap.com. For more information about Ski & Snowboard Club Vail visit skiclubvail.org.

The Vintage Contessa & Times Past host trunk show

Need a little retail therapy? View and purchase the authentic collections The Vintage Contessa and Times Past will be showcasing at a trunk show at Luca Bruno Due in Vail on Thursday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Chanel, Louis Vuitton and Hermes handbags and accessories along with Rolex watches will be on display.

Husband and wife team, Rob and Donae Cangelosi Chramosta make up The Vintage Contessa and Times Past. Rob started collecting coins at age 5 and selling watches at age 15 and Donae has been a self-proclaimed “handbag addict” since her father brought her back a Gucci purse from Italy when she was 13 years old. Their passion goes beyond fashionable accessories. They truly search the globe to find authentic, timeless luxury pieces that become an heirloom that you can pass down from generation to generation.

Why buy pre-owned? “In a world filled with disposable fashion, choosing a piece that creates a lower carbon footprint and has a lasting value gives you a feeling of success,” Donae said. But there is also something about the story behind a pre-owned piece and the lasting craftsmanship that goes into making these timeless luxury goods. “It’s the intrigue of ‘where did this bag travel before?’ ‘Which party was it at?’ or ‘Who was there?’ that creates the allure of owning a statement piece that has a history behind it,” Donae said. 

One question the Chramostas get asked a lot is “How do you know it’s real?”

“We own everything in our inventory and therefore make more of a financial commitment to it,” Donae said. “When you’re around the real product all the time, you can tell the difference between if it is real or fake. The stitching, stamping, smell, style, watch dials and bezels, the movement of the second hand, you’ve touched them so many times, you are intimately familiar with each product.” The Chramostas unconditionally guarantee the authenticity of every piece they purchase and sell.

Like many other businesses, COVID-19 has affected this unique jewelry box of a boutique, but Donae and Rob, who hail from Houston but consider Vail their home away from home, took advantage of this time not on the road going to trade shows and created “Living the Authentic Life” podcast. This weekly show covers interesting and stylish personalities sharing authentic journeys of commitment, connection and authenticity. This week their podcast will be live from the Luca Bruno Due store at 10 a.m. with yours truly. I’ll be talking up Vail’s unique sense of style and some of the history behind this town and its authentic, pioneering spirit.

The Vintage Contessa and Times Past has paired up with the Vail Daily to do an Instagram giveaway. One lucky follower will win one vintage Louis Vuitton duffle bag valued at approximately $1000 from Vintage Contessa and Times Past.

Open for Business: Eye Pieces of Vail

Name of Business: Eye Pieces of Vail

Locations: Stores in Vail, Lionshead, Beaver Creek, Edwards and Snowmass

Email: CustomerService@EyePiecesofVail.com

Website: eyepiecesofvail.com

What goods or services are you offering at this time? 

At Eye Pieces, we provide a world-class selection of sunglasses, glasses, and goggles all available in prescription. We also provide eye exams, telehealth eye exams, contact lenses, cleanings and repairs for eyewear.

How have you adjusted to serve your customers during these unprecedented times? 

The team at Eye Pieces can now bring the shopping experience to you! From the comfort of your home, our opticians can come to you with the latest styles in eyewear for the ultimate private shopping experience. In our stores, our staff is working diligently to sanitize our showrooms, medical equipment and all product. We are asking customers to also wear facemasks while in the store and practice social distancing.

How can the community support you?

Gift cards are a great option for customers that can’t visit us right now. We also love Google reviews.

What’s the best source to keep up to date with your offerings?

Customers and the community can keep up to date with our offerings through Instagram (@eyepieces1984), Facebook (Eye Pieces of Vail and Snowmass) and our Website (EyePiecesofVail.com)

What’s the response been?

We have gotten a great response from the public and customers who are eager to get essential services and products for all their vision needs. We are so grateful for the support from all of our amazing customers, neighbors and community during this time.

What are your plans going forward as the “new normal” evolves? 

We are so excited to have all six of our stores back open and to have our wonderful team of opticians back. Moving forward, we want our customers to know that we are here for them in-store seven days a week and able to accommodate them through private appointments if needed.

Open for Business: Grey Salt

Name of business: Grey Salt

Physical address: 141 East Meadow Drive, Suite #205 Vail, CO 81657 (2nd level of Solaris)

Phone number: 970-763-5351

Email: info@greysaltvail.com

Website: www.greysaltvail.com

What goods or services are you offering at this time? 

Men’s clothing and accessories, and birthday and Father’s Day gift items! 

How have you adjusted to serve your customers during these unprecedented times?

We offer all of our inventory online and we are doing personal shopping appointments outside of our regular hours. We are now open seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Towards the end of June, we will be open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. We also offer Salt Box, a custom-styled box service that can be shipped or delivered right to your door. 

How can the community support you?

Please support us by shopping locally at Grey Salt for summer styles and Father’s Day gifting! We are currently running a gift card promotion- we give a gift card back to you based on how much you spend! Use it anytime in 2020.

What’s the best source to keep up to date with your offerings?

Follow us on Instagram: @greysaltvail.com or sign up for our newsletter by going to our website.

What’s the response been?

Our customers are thrilled we are open again! And we love seeing them back in the store. They missed Grey Salt! Everyone seems excited about shopping our amazing new men’s clothing brands in the safe context of a small local boutique.

What are your plans going forward as the “new normal” evolves?

We are currently open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. every day. Starting in late June we will expand hours from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. We will also be at the Vail Farmers Market this summer for the first time ever, right outside Solaris. We are closely following Eagle County Public Health orders and town of Vail guidelines to keep everyone safe during this time. We also validate one hour of free parking at Solaris.

Open for Business: Avalon Clothing Company

Name of business: Avalon Clothing Company

Physical address: Vail: 675 Lionshead Place, Vail CO 91657, Beaver Creek: 61 Avondale Lane C-2, Beaver Creek, CO 81620

Phone number: Vail 970-476-4112, Beaver Creek 970-845-9700

Email: info@avalonclothingcompany.com

 Website: www.avalonclothingcompany.com

What goods or services are you offering at this time? 

We have fresh spring collections available for both men and women in the store and online. Father’s Day is right around the corner and we have tons of great gift ideas ranging from colognes and handmade bracelets to shirts for every occasion. We also offer gift cards and now through June 21, we have a special deal for Father’s Day. We are offering a $500 gift card discounted to a purchase price of $450. Call us to purchase one now!

How have you adjusted to serve your customers during these unprecedented times?

We have added numerous shopping options, including no obligation shop at home gift baskets, free online delivery, curbside pickup, and contact-free local delivery to your doorstep. We are offering returns on all merchandise within our return window so that customers have the ease of trying on at home and deciding what they like. In addition to the above, we are happy to offer private shopping appointments. All you need to do is call or email us. Both our Vail and Beaver Creek locations are open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily and avalonclothingcompany.com is available 24/7. 

We offer a safe shopping environment and strictly follow all state and county guidelines. If you don’t have a mask to wear, we will provide you one for free. 

How can the community support you?

The community can help support us by shopping online, in store, and spreading the word about Avalon being open for business. In addition to the above we are offering discounted gift cards that do not expire for 12 months and can be used online or in store! Follow us on Facebook and Instagram to be eligible to win a $500 gift card at the end of each month. 

What’s the best source to keep up to date with your offerings?

The best way to stay up to date with Avalon is to follow us on Facebook and Instagram and to subscribe to our website.

What has the response been?

The response has been extremely positive from customers and employees. Everyone is ready to be out, enjoying our beautiful valley. Locals have started trickling in and shopping now that we are open full time. As we have been reaching out to our clients during the lockdown, we have had unbelievable support as we have expanded our website and elevated our presence on social media. We expect many of our regular clients to be visiting the valley soon. We are grateful for everyone who has shown us such tremendous support.

What are your plans going forward as the “new normal” evolves?

We are now open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily through the summer and will continue to offer the Vail Valley’s best shopping experience while keeping our customers and staff safe. We expect Facebook and Instagram to be an extra tool to stay connected with our clients near and far as we experience the new normal together.   

Open for Business: Pepi Sports

Name of business: Pepi Sports

Physical address: 231 Bridge St. Vail, CO 81657 

Phone number: 970-476-5202

Email: pepisports@pepisports.comskishop@pepisports.com

What goods and services are you offering at this time? 

Pepi Sports is open downstairs offering all 2019-20 skis marked down 50%, as well as 40% off all ski boots, goggles and helmets. We have temporarily moved clothing, jewelry and furniture displays into Pepi’s Bar while our main showroom is renovated. In the bar, you can find 50-70% off all men’s and ladies’ skiwear. Bikes and e-bikes are available for half-day and full-day rentals. We are open seven days a week from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

How have you adjusted to serve your customers during these unprecedented times?

We are taking advantage of the bar location to offer a more open-air shopping experience in addition to social distancing practices. We also use a spray hand sanitizer to ensure bikes and other rental equipment is clean after each use.

How can the community support you?

We are lucky to have an amazing community around us that can still call the store for personal shopping and questions on equipment and rentals. Our website is up to date with the latest discounts and super deals for at-home shopping. Pepi Sports Upstairs Ladies Boutique will be available for shopping on June 1.

What’s the source to keep up to date with your offerings?

Visit Pepisports.com, find us on Instagram or call the shop at 970-476-5202. The ski shop can be reached at 970-576-5206.

What’s the response been?

Everyone has been thrilled that we have been able to assist them with their Alpine touring gear as they try to get their last turns in before the snow melts.

What are your plans going forward as the “new normal” evolves?

As things evolve, we will continue to evolve and adjust to the times so we can continue to serve the valley with the same great service they have become accustomed to over the last 50 years. As always, our goal is to keep the customers safe and healthy in both their adventures and beyond.

Open for Business: Well & Being Spa at Vail Marriott Mountain Resort

Name of business: Well & Being Spa at Vail Marriott Mountain Resort

Physical address: 715 W. Lio​nshead Circle, Vail, CO 81657

Phone number: 970-479-5004

Email: reservations@wbvail.com

Website: www.wbvail.com

What goods or services are you offering at this time? 

We are selling e-gift cards and have a limited time offer: Purchase an e-gift card for a 50-minute service and receive an instant upgrade to an 80-minute and a complimentary spa gift upon arrival when we open back up. Get something for mom for Mother’s Day and the e-gift card will be sent right to her inbox.  

How can the community support you?

Purchasing e-gift cards for a future spa appointment once the spa reopens. e-gift cards can be purchased here. (https://vmmr1657.na.book4time.com/spagift/)

What’s the best source to keep up to date with your offerings?

www.Wbvail.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/wellandbeingvail

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/wellandbeingvail/

What are your plans going forward as the “new normal” evolves?

Our spa will be taking an enhanced approach to safety and wellness to ensure every employee and guest feels safe. Stay tuned to our social media channels and www.wbvail.com for the full list of action items our team will be making.

Open for Business: Squash Blossom

Name of business: Squash Blossom 

Physical address: 198 Gore Creek Vail, CO 81657

Phone number: 970-476-3129

Email: shop@sbvail.com

Website: www.squashblossomvail.com

What goods or services are you offering at this time?

We are able to offer the same product before the pandemic and have added some new products called the Hope bracelet and bead kits.

How have you adjusted to serve your customers during these unprecedented times?

We have been focused on giving hope to our customers and the community. We created the Hope bracelet and have been hand-making them and directly shipping them to customers or providing local drop-off service at their house. You can also purchase online or call. We want to give everyone a sense of hope and support our community by giving a percentage of the sales to the Eagle Valley Community Fund.

How can the community support you?

Purchase Hope bracelets to give everyone a sense of hope during these times. Visit our store and support local businesses. Buy gift cards.

What’s the best source to keep up to date with your offerings?

Our Instagram and Facebook accounts: @squashblossomvail or squash blossom on Facebook.

What’s the response been?

We have mostly been selling our Hope bracelets. I think everyone is nervous and unsure of the next steps. Just taking things one day at a time. 

What are your plans going forward as the “new normal” evolves? We are planning on opening later this week. All of our products will be available to purchase online or anyone can call and schedule a private appointment if they don’t feel comfortable getting out of the house yet.

POC introduces helmets that can communicate

This is part seven of a seven-part series on the latest and greatest finds at the Outdoor Retailer and Snowsports Industries America (SIA) Snow Show held in Denver earlier this year. This trade show represents suppliers of consumer outdoor sports with constituents in the retailer, rep and resort communities.

The next time you are in the chair lift line, look around and see how many people are wearing helmets. Chances are, you’ll see a majority of skiers and snowboarders donning the brain bucket. Helmets are a common part of the winter sports equipment equation for all ages. POC Sports aims to develop products to possibly save lives and reduce the consequences of accidents for winter sports enthusiasts.

POC debuted its new OBEX Backcountry SPIN helmet for the 2019-2020 season at the Outdoor Retailer and Snowsports Industries America (SIA) Snow Show held in Denver earlier this year. It contains a Near Field Communication (NFC) medical ID chip that can give rescuers the medical information they need at the scene of an injury in an instant, thereby assisting them in making the best judgments for treatment immediately after an accident.

When you get the helmet you also need to download the app that goes with the NFC chip. Medical information such as if you are on blood thinners or have epilepsy or allergies is stored in the app.

“Ski patrol or mountain rescue teams will have this app and be able to click “scan” on their phone, tap it on the helmet and it brings up all of your medical information,” said Kelley Fitzpatrick, territory manager in Colorado for POC.

The helmet also has POC’s patent-pending silicone pad technology system, SPIN (Shearing Pad INside). This allows the helmet to move relative to your head. “It’s kind of like the skin on the outside of your skull or the cerebral spinal fluid between your brain and your skull. It allows for shearing motion and by doing that it reduces the energy transfer to your brain after an impact,” Fitzpatrick said.

The new OBEX Backcountry SPIN helmet gained rave reviews from ski and snowboard shops at the Outdoor Retailer and SIA Snow Show and received the Best in Show award from “Freeskier” magazine and the Show Stopper award from “Skiing” magazine. To learn more about this technology from POC, visit www.pocsports.com.