ASPEN, Colo. (CBS4) – The snowstorm that hit the high country over the weekend was great news, but ski resorts still have a long way to go.
In Aspen lots of lifts still aren’t running, which means a lot of workers aren’t getting paid. Across the state there are hundreds of seasonal employees hired in the fall to work as lift attendants, snowmakers, instructors and more. But now Aspen Skiing Co. is helping those who need a boost.
This week the CBS4 Mountain Newsroom crew caught up with people dining at The Bumps restaurant at the base of Buttermilk Mountain, one of Aspen’s four resorts. The diners weren’t resort visitors, though. They were employees.
Lackluster snow so far this season has meant a meager paycheck to start the winter for people like lift attendant Trevor Campbell.
“We’ve been working, but it’s like three shifts a week, so still pretty slow,” Campbell said.
Campbell is like hundreds of workers across the state.
“I came out here with very little to start with, the cabinets were pretty bare,” Campbell said.
So his bosses have stepped in to help out, and they have even joined the waitstaff.
“They collect your plates and you realize that guy is a mountain manager at Highland or something,” Campbell said. “One of the first nights Mike Kaplan was back there. To have him back there serving food is awesome; shows he cares about us.”
“The goal is to make them feel appreciated, make sure they’re well-fed, not going to bed hungry,” said Mike Kaplan, Aspen Ski Company CEO. “For us, it’s about creating loyal employees who are totally dedicated.”
By the end of this week the company will have provided approximately 2,000 free meals.
The last free dinner will be served on Friday, and it will be complete with live music.
Aspen will be opening significantly more terrain for skiers this coming weekend.