Friday, May 20, 2011

Weather, Mountain Improvements and Summer Fun


The weather does many things, but probably the biggest thing it does (other than affect our daily lives) is to give us something to talk about and keep stats on. Did you know that during December – March (meteorological winter), we had the least amount of rain for the past several years and the most snow? Then comes March and from March – May, we have had over 15 inches of rain which has been a record in modern time for the state of Vermont! Mother nature always adjusts herself in her own way.

Spring has slowly been returning to Okemo and we have begun working on projects and will be going even stronger as real summer begins. Here are a few projects we are working on:

Repair, replacement and fixing up of the Clocktower base area. Some of the old concrete will be removed and repaired. New walls put in, stairs removed as well as the re-siding of the Clocktower.

Painting of the Ranta Farm house, a historical building located on the Jackson Gore property.

Installation and construction of an 18 hole miniature golf course as well as a 4 stations bungee jumping station.

Adventure Park concept with culinary option near the miniature golf and timber ripper. Pricing will be one ticket with unlimited usage.

Refurbish and upgrade pumps and motors for Black River and Mid-Mountain snowmaking pump stations.

Repave 2-minute circle area in the clock tower base area.

Replace carpet & awning at Okemo Valley Golf course.

Purchase a stage for the special events including Jackson Gore Music series and other events.

Many other building specific or department specific projects and improvements.

Over $1 million is being spent on capital improvements at Okemo this summer to enhance and improve both the summer and winter guest experience.

There are also many weekend events happening that guests can be part of as a participant or to enjoy as a spectator.

Okemo Hill climb (organized by the Ludlow Rotary) – June 25th
The Okemo Bike climb is a challenging 5.8 mile uphill race on Route 103 and Okemo Mountain Road. The event is staged and started from Okemo’s Jackson Gore Village. This is the fourth year for this event and is the second event of the season in the Bike Up Mountain Point Series (BUMPS), a series of nine uphill races held throughout New England. This race benefits the charities of the Ludlow Rotary Club.

Okemo Challenge – July 30th:
The featured 10 mile race starts at the base of Okemo Mountain and features 2 climbs to the mountain’s summit before returning to the base of the mountain. There is nearly 9,000 feet elevation change in the 10 mile run. The companion 5K race starts at the mountain’s base and ends the summit. 5K participants can take the ski lift down to the base of the mountain after they finish. The majority of both races will be run on grass and trails. The Okemo Mountain Challenge brings the spirit of adventure back on the Mountain this summer!

Post-race party and entertainment- Runners will enjoy a band playing at the summit and another band playing at the post race party at the base of the mountain. After the race all runners (free) and their families (nominal cost) are invited to a post race cookout and with live music. Information - (203) 481-5933 or

Hops in the Hills Brew Festival – August 6th
Okemo Mountain Resort will host Hops in the Hills, a beer festival, from 1-6 p.m., on Saturday, Aug. 6. Jackson Gore will be the setting for enjoying the great outdoors while sampling a variety of beers from local and regional brewers and some of the best chicken wings the valley has to offer in the Chicken Wing Challenge. Chris Kleeman and The Sly Geralds Band will provide live musical accompaniment to the beer tasting and Coleman Brook Tavern will fire up the grill for some burgers, barbecue and all the summertime fixin's.

100 on 100 Relay – August 13th
The 100 on100 Relay is a 100-mile team running relay race through the Heart of Vermont and ending at Okemo’s Jackson Gore. Runners from across the country converge on the Green Mountain state each August for this long distance relay along scenic Route 100. Running races in New England are bounding in popularity and Vermont running races put on by Heart of Vermont Productions are looking to lead the way.

We are hopeful that you will come up and experience what Okemo has to offer in the summer and let us treat you to the Okemo Difference year round.

Bruce Schmidt
Vice-President & General Manager
Okemo Mountain Resort