The first day of fall was also the first day of volunteer projects at Magic. And what a beautiful day it was to gather as a ski community and help prep the mountain for the coming winter season.
At least 40 people came to trim current glades, create new ones, and spurce up the lodge and deck. Thanks to all that came–you truly represent the spirit and dedication needed to keep an independent ski area vibrant in an era of large corporate resort entities.
The first glades crew went up at 9 am to tackle the mountain’s largest glade which is now “officially” on the map: The Wardrobe. It is steep and vast as it lies between both Sorcerer and Talisman. The crew cleaned it up and cleared it out to make the fall line to skier’s-right more accessible. But while the objective was The Wardrobe, the crew hit another great spot, not to be mentioned here, which is not on the official map, making a great new line for the upcoming season.
The first team cutting a new line
At 10 am the next crew headed up to the East Side of the hill to hit glades both on and off the map…”on” being Disappearing Act which now has a new skier’s-right route and “off” being a baby called “Up Your Shirt”. Also on the East Side there was an additional crew of pros weed wacking both Goniff Glade and Twilight Zone–two trails that only “goats” with power tools can handle.
Meanwhile back down below, volunteers were busy painting and repairing the lodge–with plans for a new sound system for the outdoor deck!
So with sun and temps in the 70s as the leaves start to turn, Magic was a hub of work this saturday, while customers also flowed in to challenge themselves in the new TimberQuest tree-crossing obstacle courses. But lest you think Magic is all work and no play–all our volunteers came together at day’s end to share a few cold ones, some food and talk about the new hidden stashes which await the new season. And with that, Day #1 was in the books, with two more Volunteer Days coming on October 6th and 20th.
With Magic’s first of three Volunteer days coming up on September 22nd, it is appropriate to recognize how important our volunteers are to this ski area. It is also important for the non-volunteers (yet!) to understand that this volunteer activity is truly a mutually beneficial relationship–and worth giving a try.
For Magic, our volunteers get critical work done to prepare the mountain for the new ski season. Our steep trails need hands-on trimming because in certain areas, machine-driven mowers just can’t tread. And, this cutting is necessary so that when we get snow, it doesn’t take as much to get a trail open. The glades also need attention to clear brush growth and remove fallen trees/limbs. And, for those that prefer to stay lower down on the mountain, a fresh coat of paint around the buildings is a big help to freshen Magic’s face.
You see, Magic is a place that needs a community to pitch in so we can control costs and keep things affordable for more skiers and riders. But it’s also about letting our skiers create some new skiable terrain which leads to a natural, incremental expansion of the adventure to be had here (for those who know where to find it).
So Magic looks forward to our army of volunteers to put their imprint on Magic. And, just as importantly, Magic puts its imprint on each volunteer after they’ve given their hard work and sweat.
Volunteers see the mountain in a different, more personal level out there on the hill (without its winter coat on). The tremendous natural terrain here is appreciated even more up-close (it’s why Hans Thorner selected Glebe Mtn to be the home of Magic, as its contours reminded him of the Swiss Alps). Plus, the camaraderie of working with other like-minded enthusiasts builds bonds and creates new friendships. And, clearing a trail or creating a new glade makes skiing or riding that trail a much more personally satisfying feat come winter time. In essence, you become one with the mountain–and that stays with you forever.
For those that have yet to experience it, a Magic Volunteer Day will leave you deeply tired, but also deeply fulfilled. Our volunteers have a part themselves on that hill, and both they and Magic are the better for it.
What you say? Snow in August? Not quite, but Magic is opening…opening the TimberQuest at Magic treetop obstacle courses and zip lines on the lower slopes.
TimberQuest at Magic is probably the most fun and challenge you can have on a hill without your skis or boards on. Although you do get to shred the trees from heights of 20′ to 40′ up!
This is the next gen of all-season mountain sports–with both physical and mental challenges, mixed with the all-natural beauty of Green Mountain forests, that will re-energize you, your family, and your friends. There are dozens of obstacles to overcome as you “tree-cross” up the slopes, and then ride exciting zip lines on the way back down. In just a couple of hours, you will have left the plugged-in world behind and discovered a sense of accomplishment and determination in challenging oneself to do something different and unexpected.
Much like skiing and riding the steeps of Magic, you are going to have some fun sharing stories about what you did in the trees of TimberQuest Park at Magic.
There is a lot more going on at Magic this summer than ever before. The crew is working hard on improving the snowmaking system; there is a new tree-top ropes adventure course being built; and, the Black Line Brew Pub is open from Thursdays-Sundays every week with great Vermont farm fresh food, drinks specials and our wide selection of specialty draft beers. (more…)
Greetings from Londonderry. I want to provide you all with a brief update as to the happenings at Magic since the inception of the Magic Partnership.
First, Tom Barker and I are very pleased to be working with the new shareholder elected Board members, John Jacobi, Dave DeMatteis, and Duke Sullivan. They are already providing inspiration, ideas, and energy.
Snowmaking Investment Planning
As discussed in the Business Plan, improving the snowmaking is the primary focus of our efforts and as such a majority of share funding will be deployed in that arena over the next three years. We have engaged Slavko Stanchek of Mountain View Technologies to consult and assist in modifying and where necessary redesigning our snowmaking system. Slavko has a more than thirty years background in designing and engineering snowmaking systems all over the country including both large and moderate sized areas in Vermont. His role will be to create a system using as much of the old as is reasonable and meshing that with new equipment and piping as needed. Efficiency without sacrificing production is his goal. There will be many components of the snowmaking upgrades and Slavko will help us implement them in a coordinated fashion assuring notable progress over the next three summers. The end result will be a far more productive system which specifically caters to the unique needs of Magic. Work on the snowmaking improvements will commence shortly and will include pipe replacement, new valving, and purchase of higher efficiency guns. We will keep you closely posted as to the progress on projects which are being tackled this summer.
New Leadership For Outside Operations
As we look to improve our outdoor operations, there is no doubt that personnel plays a critical role. I am pleased to announce that we recently added an important piece to the personnel puzzle. Travis Richmond came on board this week to direct and manage all outside operations. Travis spent the past seven years working at Stratton in the mechanical/grooming field. He also has been involved in lift construction and snowmaking renovations. Prior to Stratton, Travis graduated from Lyndon State College where he majored in ski area management and for two years after his graduation he worked at Magic. As such he has an in depth knowledge of the outside operations at Magic as well as a wealth of experience over the past seven years at Stratton. We welcome Travis aboard with great enthusiasm. As an aside, some of you may recall meeting Greg Kinsey (our primary groomer last season) or at the very least you had the pleasure of enjoying his work product. Travis and Greg were roommates at college, and we are expecting that Greg will return to Magic this year and join Travis to further the mission to make Magic the best skiing and riding experience in southern Vermont.
Summer Fun at Magic
In terms of activities at the mountain this summer, we are again hosting the Londonderry Independence Day fireworks show which will take place on Friday July 6th. There will be live music, BBQ dinner on the deck, and a great time will be had by all. Shortly after that, The Butties, one of the best Beatles cover bands around, will be playing their annual show on Saturday July 14th. Both of these are fun family events, so be sure to make your way to VT to participate in the festivities. Another event which is taking place at nearby Timber Ridge (the back side of Magic) on June 14 -16 is the Frendly Gathering which is a three day music festival. There will be lots of music and many other activities. For more information please visit www.frendlygathering.com.
On another note, we have held several discussions with someone who is interested in investing in Magic by building an aerial tree park in the woods. The park would consist of platforms built around trees connected by various balancing elements, bridges, and zip lines. It is a challenging, active, and fun sport which dovetails with Magic’s outdoor adventurous spirit perfectly. If this project comes to fruition it will provide much needed summer activity at Magic. At present we are engaged in the permitting process which is an inevitable/mandatory stepping stone in VT. We will keep you posted as to the progress and when to expect the building to commence. In conjunction with this park, we are planning on opening the Black Line Brew Pub on summer weekends for dining and entertainment. We have not yet determined the schedule, so please keep tabs on line, and wewill put out the word when it is set.
Spread the Word
Please also remember that it is never too early to be spreading the word about Magic amongst your friends and encouraging them to make Magic their winter home or at least to give it a try. Growing this mountain by spreading the enthusiasm within the community of the Magic faithful is one of the most effective ways to build our following and perpetuate the Magic experience long into the future.
Thank you for your support. We’re looking forward to a productive summer and will keep you closely posted as to the progress on specific projects with a monthly update. We will outline how people can participate in the effort to improve Magic in the next newsletter. In the meantime, be sure to come to Vermont and enjoy the beautiful green mountains, and while you’re here, stop by Magic to say hello.
We have hit our threshold of 300 shares sold! The momentum created by the matching challenge issued two weeks ago has brought forth both new shareholders as well as many who already owned shares, and as a result we have reached the “magic” number. This is a very exciting time for the mountain and everyone associated with it. We have taken a great step in stabilizing and perpetuating Magic’s future. I want to express my gratitude to all of you who have stepped forth and purchased shares not only in conjunction with the recent challenge offer, but since day one when the shares were first offered. Thank you all for your support and enthusiasm in putting this monumental task over the finish line.
There are still some shares coming in, so I will not have an exact count until the weekend. After a few minutes of appreciative reflection, it’s back to work to try to reach the ultimate finish line of 333 shares sold which would sell out the offering. Those of you still out there who have yet to pull the trigger, there is still an opportunity to become part of the Magic Partnership and own a piece of the mountain’s future.
Again, thank you all so much. This effort epitomizes what Magic is all about: a spirited community of enthusiasts who love their mountain.
Magic just finished a real good weekend of skiing and riding with trail count climbing, fun natural snow trails on both east and west side, snowmaking on Talisman for the first time in 4 years, and a succesful hosting of the Vermont Alpine Race Association’s SVC J5/J6 race on Saturday. We are also picking up new shareholders and current shareholders are re-upping to buy more shares so Magic can put its capital raise over the top and begin to implement our skier-owned Magic Partnership. The share purchase has been give a boost by the offer from a generous Magic family to match any new shares between now and January 31st until we meet our 300 share goal. This share match challenge essentially makes any new share purchase worth double! The response to the challenge has been swift, but we need to make the most of it over the next week to meet our 300 share goal, and then continue the momentum toward 333 for a fully funded offering. Many thanks to all for participating and making the commitment to Magic’s future. We literally can’t do it without all of you. Let’s make our 50th Party on February 4th even more celebratory!!!
It’s finally turning to winter here with close to a foot of snow since Thursday! The mountain is white and the weather pattern has hopefully changed for good. Besides the skiing, what makes Magic special is the community of skiers and riders here. And, that community got together to raise funds for the refurbishing of one of the great double chair lifts in the US–Magic’s Red Chair. This morning we had an opportunity to thank the over 178 people who “bought” a chair. It was a fun dedication, and there are special prizes all day for those riding chair #50 in honor of our 50 years of peak to bottom skiing. Check the video of the dedication on our youtube channel!
The snow is coming! The Red Chair is being celebrated Saturday at 8:30. The snowmaking crew will start heading west over the weekend. The Black Line Brew Pub will be rockin’ with music, NFL Playoffs, shotskis and a Bloody Bar. #50 chair riders get a little giveaway in honor of our 50-Years. The tube park stays open till 7pm on holidays for the kids (and wannabe kids). And, for many, it is a 3-day holiday in honor of Martin Luther King, jr. So why not bring a friend to see what Magic is all about? They’ll thank you. Especially if you buy them a 25% off ticket while they last at our online store!
There is no doubt that mother-nature is in a sour mood. But, that does not mean we have to be. At Magic, there could be plenty to moan about, but the community here tends to try to make the best of whatever obstacles are thown in the way. We may not have 200 guns and lots of trails open, but that did not stop our skiers from enjoying great runs all week long here at Magic and having fun together. We have a great mile of skiing–not “miles” like at other resorts–but everyone has said our mile is really skiing great compared to what else is out there. So here is a mile-long video of Magic’s “miracle” given what mother-nature has failed to provide. Hope you enjoy it on our YouTube Channel!