Mt Washington Valley, NH businesses report strong Thanksgiving weekend sales
News from Mt Washington Valley Chamber of Commerce – November 28, 2017
Contact: Marti Mayne, PR Manager, 207-846-6331, PR@mtwashingtonvalley.org
EARLY SKI RESORT OPENINGS, IDEAL WEATHER & PLENTY OF SHOPPERS CONTRIBUTE TO STRONG THANKSGIVING WEEKEND FOR MT WASHINGTON VALLEY BUSINESSES
North Conway, NH – With three Mt Washington Valley ski resorts open early skiers joined exuberant shoppers for some great early season skiing and shopping over the Thanksgiving/Black Friday holiday. Every business responding to the Mt Washington Valley Chamber of Commerce’s informal survey of membership maintained that the holiday weekend was strong; up or even over last year for every business reporting.
“The perfect combination of great weather, three ski resorts open and plenty of Black Friday/Plaid Saturday sales among both outlets and independently owned shops translated to a very strong Thanksgiving weekend in Mt Washington Valley,” said Janice Crawford, Executive Director of the Mt Washington Valley Chamber of Commerce. “Add to that the announcement on Friday from USA Today/10 Best that North Conway was named the #1 ski town in the USA, and we’re quite sure that it will be a strong winter as skiers and riders see for themselves what a number one ski destination is all about,” finished Crawford.
Bretton Woods Resort was the first to open in New Hampshire, followed by Wildcat Mountain, both well before Thanksgiving. This gave the resorts time to establish a base and offer top to bottom skiing for Thanksgiving weekend. According to Craig Clemmer, Marketing Director for Omni Mount Washington Hotel & Resort, “Skier visits for Thanksgiving weekend were up 8-percent over last year. We were very excited to be opened early, and offering top to bottom skiing”. Additionally, Clemmer noted, “Bretton Woods also had a record sales year at the Boston Ski show, selling advance ticket and new ticket packages. Early season tickets also contributed to that. Best of all, I’m looking out the window and it’s snowing,” finished Clemmer.
Greg Fisher, VP of Marketing & Events for Peak Resorts, Inc, also weighed in to the chamber’s survey sharing good news from Wildcat Mountain, “Our Thanksgiving was weekend was fantastic with crowds at Wildcat comprised of new visitors and our loyal season pass holders enjoying the weather and terrain. The resort had already been open for two weekends prior to the holiday period so momentum was good as a year ago we only opened on Thanksgiving morning with only Lynx available. This year we offered two trails from the summit PoleCat as well as Lynx. The weather was also fantastic for skiers. Friday and Saturday saw good crowds with live music up in the pub.” In addition, Fisher noted that the Attitash and Wildcat Cyber Monday ticket sale, offering heavily discounted ticket packages, was a huge success too.
And Becca Deschenes, Marketing Director at Cranmore Mountain Resort, reported in after Cranmore opened for Thanksgiving weekend. “We started the season of on Friday and were able to add more terrain for Saturday and Sunday,” noted Deschenes. “We also had the tubing and Mountain Adventure Park running through the weekend as well. Saturday was our annual Homecoming event, and we saw a strong turnout for the event. We generated over $4,000 from the sign auction (double what we brought in last year) to benefit the Jimmy Mersereau Scholarship Foundation. We’re continuing to make snow as weather allows, and will reopen with on and off hill activities this weekend. “
Charlene Brown at the Farm by the River B&B with Stables told the chamber that great weather contributed to busy days at the stables with a number of horseback, carriage and group hay rides. In addition, she maintained that the inn did very well for Thanksgiving vacation weekend too.
Craig Clemmer also commented that dining and room sales at the Omni Mount Washington Resort were strong for the Thanksgiving vacation. “The hotel had record numbers for the Thanksgiving buffet. Buffet goers also got complimentary ski tickets for that day. We slice the turkey every which way to give everyone what they want,” said Clemmer with a smile, who added that room sales for the weekend were robust.
Bud Selmi, owner of the Margarita Grill in Glen, told the chamber that their sales were on par with last Thanksgiving weekend too.
When it came to shopping, Black Friday appeared to be the strongest shopping day of the Thanksgiving weekend. Laura Lemieux, Assistant Director of Marketing & Events at Settlers Green and Settlers Crossing polled store managers at the mall and shared, “Stores are reporting a solid Black Friday, with that day generating the biggest traffic and sales for the entire holiday weekend. The weather was just right for shopping on Black Friday and all of our parking lots were full by mid-morning on that day.” She added, “The conclusion I have from what I've heard so far from our stores is that Black Friday was definitely bigger at Settlers Green this year over last year. November continues to be one of the top shopping months at Settlers Green, with the primary drivers being Bring A Friend Shopping Weekend at the start of the month and Black Friday at the end of the month.”
On Friday of Thanksgiving Weekend (Black Friday), USA Today/10 Best released results from their reader poll of the Best Ski Town in the USA. One of just a hand full of towns nominated in the Northeast, ski and winter enthusiasts declared North Conway the best ski destination in the country over such legendary icons as Aspen, Breckenridge, Taos and Steamboat Springs after about a month of voting. Jackson Ski Touring Foundation was also named among the top ten XC Ski Resorts in the USA in another USA Today/10 best reader poll. Also, notably, Bretton Woods Nordic Center was nominated among the top 20 XC Ski Resorts in the USA by USA Today/10 Best editors. This combination of kudos and awards, if coupled by plenty of snow this winter, is anticipated to contribute to success for the winter tourism season in Mt Washington Valley, NH.
For more information on planning holiday getaways to Mt Washington Valley, visit www.MtWashingtonValley.org or call 800-367-3364 (800-DO-SEE-NH). To plan a New Hampshire winter getaway, go to www.VisitNH.gov.
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Photo: Black Friday shopping crowds at Settlers Green. Photo credit: Laura Lemieux/Settlers Green.