DANBURY — Ragged Mountain has been recognized as one of the beginner-friendly and family-friendly ski areas in the North East, winning a 2016-17 Best in Snow Award, Powered by Liftopia.
Ragged Mountain's General Manager Ryan Schramm has been involved teaching and coaching skiing from the youngest kids to experienced racers. As the price of ski lift tickets have increased, and the cost of getting into the sport continues to climb, Schramm and the leadership team at Ragged Mountain Resort developed Mission: Affordable, a long-term campaign designed to address the issue holistically.
"Our objective is more than just to get people to say 'I tried skiing' or 'I tried snowboarding,' once," he explained. "We want them to say, 'I am a skier,' or a snowboarder, and to do that we needed to create a program that taught them to ski or ride and made it easy to continue with the sport for life. By the time they complete the three free lessons in the Bebe Wood Learn to Ski Free program, they qualify for a season pass for just $69 and an entire package of brand-new ... ski or snowboarding equipment for just a couple hundred dollars. It is the most affordable way to take up these great sports in the entire country, and it makes it affordable for a whole family to become skiers or riders."
Ben Hall, Ragged Mountain's marketing manager noted, "Early reports indicate our participants are returning for their second lessons at more than a 68 percent rate which is about four times the national average. That's a lot of happy new skiers and riders. Everyone on the staff at Ragged fondly remembers our first time on the mountain, and we are delighted to be able to make it possible for so many more people to do the same."
Unlike other rankings, the Best in Snow Awards incorporates the largest dataset in the industry combined with feedback from thousands of skiers and snowboarders to determine ski areas they are most passionate about.
To compile the awards, Liftopia surveyed their customers to measure their enthusiasm on specific aspects of their favorite resorts such as family friendliness, challenging terrain, crowds, and snow consistency and quality. More than 10,000 responses were then weighted with a proprietary algorithm based a dataset that includes resorts' total visits per season, acreage and average lift ticket prices to surface the best ski areas overall, across seven categories and five regions, based on what matters most to skiers and snowboarders.
A instructor at Ragged Mountain ski area in Danbury gives a lesson to a youngster learning how to snowboard. Ragged Mountain recently received an award for its programs aimed at attracting new people to the sports of skiing and snowboarding. (Courtesy photo)