You can run but you can't hide from Social Media. That's the message sent loud and clear to The Canyons this week. Angry Canyons passholders took to the web to force the resort to, er, 'face' the music for opening late this season.
When The Canyons issued a press release stating they were "pleased to announce the opening date of December 10th as the first chance for the general public to get a glimpse of the phase one of a multi-year, improvement plan", passholders weren't pleased; particularly in light of all the snow we've been getting.
"Wow. Open when you said you would open. That's worse than taking a little kid's Christmas away," said Garret Bons on Facebook.
Jarrett Killpack commented- I'm pissed beyond belief. My first year to actually invest in a season pass and I feel I totally got screwed. DECEMBER 10TH??? What kind of garbage is that? Are they going to buy me some passes to another resort in the mean time? If not, I wish I could get a refund, and I'd never bother with The Canyons again.
Gary Braden commented: If they knew that their construction activities were going to bleed into the opening day arena, they should have let people know 4-6 months in advance. Not 4 days ago. This is so FUBAR that it is not even funny.
But The Canyons wasn't surprised by the outcry. "You can't throw a December date out there and not expect to hear about it," said Todd Burnette, VP of Marketing at The Canyons. "Those days are over." The resort established a Facebook page so they could connect with customers and boy did they ever. "We listened," said Burnette after notifying all season passholders that they would refund their money if they were that bummed. Burnette said, however, he hoped that guests would hold out for a final product unlike anything they've ever experienced at the Canyons. 'Worth the wait' was the phrase that came to mind.
"Life would be easier if we could open on Friday. It's not good for business to be turning lifts late," added Burnette. "I want to go skiing too." Stuck with the December 10th date, Managing Director Mike Gore issued an official apology on Facebook and assumed full responsibility for the delay. Vacationers who arrive before opening day will find increased shuttle service to Park City Mountain Resort and Deer Valley, can reschedule their trip or cancel for a full refund. All passholders will get two free lift tickets to use any time this season except over the Christmas holiday. Though many would have liked those passes to be good at PCMR between now and December 10, they appreciated the attention and effort The Canyons was making. Ray Landry replied "Hey season start dates are always negotiable and anyone who isn't going for their first time knows this! I'm happy to have a season pass at a resort that is putting money back into the mountain and not just pocketing it! I am excited for the season and the improvements and will be there when the conditions warrant it! Keep up the great work! Thanks Canyons!!!"
Would The Canyons have made as much effort if Facebook didn't exist? That's a moot question. It does and they did. "We're thankful that [fans] can tell us how they feel," said Burnette. "That's the beauty of Facebook. People can be honest. It's their perogative."
Side note to all passholders in Park City : Park City Mountain Resort recognizes that they are the only ski area open at this time. As more terrain opens they'll be considering ways to make your wait less painful. I.e. Look for some sort of discount to be coming your way by this weekend.