Priced out of ski school |

Priced out of ski school

We’ve always been extremely grateful to the wonderful staff and instructors at the Children’s Ski School. They’re the ones who taught me to ski, many years ago, when I was growing up here.

Our children, 6 and 7, have been avid participants in ski school and in the DEVO program for many years now, and I cannot speak highly enough of both programs. We got together with our friends this year, so that we could create a “form your own team” DEVO team ” our children are all friends, the carpooling could work, and everyone was excited and happy about the plans that we had made.

Imagine our dismay when we received our DEVO information in the mail. It said the program would cost $910 per child ” an almost 26 percent increase from last year ” and the ski pass is an extra $279 per child ” also an increase over last year’s price. So if we want our children to be able to take advantage of our backyard mountain, we’re on the hook for $2,378 for 14 “contact days.” Ouch.

I made a call to the DEVO program office, and was told that there was, indeed, a way for me to bring the cost down. I could go to work for Vail Resorts! If I gave them 15 days, then I could bring the price of DEVO down to $675, and the ski pass down to $25, per child, making $1,400 my new super duper price.

It doesn’t take a huge mental exercise to realize that Vail Resorts didn’t get their visa applications approved, the Epic pass made skiing affordable for people who otherwise would have worked part time for the company, so Vail Resorts is now facing a labor shortage.

It also doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see that they’re looking to make up that shortage by making it otherwise cost prohibitive for locals with children to put those children in ski school or DEVO. I already work full time to be able to (barely) afford to live here. My husband works an extra job to make up the shortfall.

We will figure out a way to get our kids skiing ” they won’t progress as far as they would have with a professional instructor, they won’t learn as much. We’ll instill in them a love for our hometown mountain, even if it’s an unrequited love. Mr. Katz is so far removed from our community that he must have forgotten that this is a community first ” we’re not here to simply be a labor pool for the Broomfield Bunch. We certainly understand that without Vail Resorts we would not have our livelihoods, but does Mr. Katz understand that these policies have now priced many of us off of our own hill?

Whether or not you have children, if you can understand how this hurts the average working family, please let Vail Resorts know by calling them at (303) 404-1800.

Unfortunately, it’s a long-distance call.

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