Credit to Vail Mountain COO Beth Howard, who apologized today to skiers caught in the enormously long lift lines that were featured in viral photos and videos earlier this week.
Howard also explained the conditions that led to those lengthy lift lines, saying that 38 inches of snow in a 48-hour period created operational challenges that slowed Vail’s ability to carry skiers and dramatically increased the number of skiers looking to take advantage of the powder.
“I know we could have done a much better job anticipating these situations and communicating with our guests,” Howard wrote (in a statement). “I am well aware that a picture is worth a thousand words, but I truly hope my words here help provide context for what happened.
Give Howard (and her PR staff) credit for actually using the phrase, “I apologize” in her statement, and for clearly explaining what went wrong. While it might have been a couple of days late, it was a human response to a situation that is understandable.
Vail Resorts has made some changes to its communications team:
- Ashley Lowe has been appointed Senior Manager of Communications, Hospitality & VRDC. Previously, Lowe led employee communications for Vail Resorts and prior to that was PR Director for Cactus.
- May Lilley has been promoted to Senior Manager of Communications, International. Lilley has 10 years of experience in the marketing/communications industry between Vail Resorts and formerly heading up the broadcast advertising for Australia/New Zealand’s largest retail advertiser, Kmart, as Senior Account Manager at Sapient Nitro in Melbourne.
- Laura Kirby has been hired as Corporate Communications Coordinator. Kirby started with Vail Resorts in 2009 as an intern with Echo. She returned in 2010 as a coordinator for the Group Sales and Marketing team in Broomfield, where she has been responsible for supporting the sales effort to our group wholesalers, ski clubs and councils across the country.
Did Denver’s Vail Resorts threaten to pull its advertising from Ski Magazine after the publication blogged about the death of a 14-year-old girl on one of its slopes? The New York Times reports it did.