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Community Ski Areas Look to Events & Festivals to Thrive

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With drought, the rise of the mega-resort, and the expensive shift to summer recreation, it's hard for ski areas to survive these days. But despite doomsday proclamations that as many as 31 percent of ski areas are dying, there's also a push in the ski industry to revive local ski hills. A new collaboration called Mountain Playground Presents aims to do just that.

At the forefront of this movement is the Mountain Rider's Alliance (MRA), a group founded in 2010 to establish healthy and profitable community ski areas. Together with Nature Partners, the MRA just announced a new program that aims to diversify the offerings at underutilized ski areas. Called Mountain Playground Presents, MRA and Nature Partners want to bring concerts, festivals, and lifestyle events to smaller ski hills in an effort to spark new business opportunities.

As Jamie Schectman, MRA CEO and co-founder explains, "Often times community ski areas could double as amazing venues for live music, festive events and great competitions. But many operators simply don't have the network, expertise or bandwidth to throw large scale events. Mountain Playground Presents and our new partnership with Nature Partners will be that solution at our partner ski areas." Be on the lookout for new events debuting in 2016 and head over here to stay on top of the MRA's latest projects.