A message from CEO Rob Katz on Thursday, March 1
Our Company’s pioneering spirit and our core value to Serve Others can be traced back to our founders, including Pete Seibert, who served in the U.S. Army’s famed 10th Mountain Division during World War II, and Earl Eaton, who served as an army engineer during the war. With this year marking the 10th anniversary of the Epic Pass, we wanted to celebrate by bringing it back to our roots and honoring the service of our Company’s founders and men and women across all branches of the U.S., Canadian and Australian military with the introduction of a new USD$99 Military Epic Pass (an almost 90 percent discount from our regular pass price) as well as USD$1.5M contributions to critical veteran organizations.
The new Military Epic Pass will be available beginning Tuesday, March 6, and for every 2018-2019 Vail Resorts season pass sold, a USD$1 donation will be made to Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP), a nonprofit organization that offers a variety of programs, services and events for wounded veterans of the military. Based on 2017-2018 pass sales, the donation could exceed USD$750,000.
My wife, Elana Amsterdam, and I will also honor the 10th Mountain Division by making a personal donation of USD$750,000 to Operation Homefront, a nonprofit organization that provides critical financial assistance and programming to build strong, stable and secure military families.
A Look Back
In 1957, Seibert and Eaton climbed to the top of Vail Mountain and saw what would become one of the most celebrated resorts in the world. They said the founding of Vail Mountain was driven by a strong desire to live their passion and share that passion and access to the mountains with others.
"Everybody else thought we were crazy, but we thought we could do any [darned] thing we decided to do." - Pete Seibert
We’ve come a long way since 1957 but the vision, passion and perseverance of Seibert and Eaton have continued to drive our Company – including the creation of the Epic Pass 10 years ago. We are eternally grateful to Pete and Earl and all those who served in the 10th Mountain Division and can think of no better way to celebrate our 10th Epic Pass than by honoring and supporting all of the brave men and women who have served and continue to serve their country and making access to the mountains a reality, just as Pete and Earl would have wanted.
Game Changer | Impact Of The Epic Pass
Ten years ago on March 18, nearly to the day that Seibert and Eaton summited Vail Mountain in 1957, our Company transformed the snow sports industry with the introduction of the Epic Pass, which made skiing and snowboarding more accessible than it had ever been. Prior to the Epic Pass, season pass prices across the industry were around USD$1,800, primarily with access to just one resort. Cutting the price by more than half to USD$579 with the Epic Pass for unlimited, unrestricted skiing and snowboarding at the Company’s then five resorts was game changing.
About These Contributions
The Military Epic Pass for all U.S., Canadian and Australian active and retired military personnel and their dependents will be priced at USD$99, an almost 90-percent discount off the regular price of the Epic Pass. It also represents a groundbreaking value not found anywhere in the industry, especially combined with unlimited and unrestricted access to the Company’s 14 owned and operated resorts for the 2018-2019 ski season: Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge and Keystone in Colorado; Park City in Utah; Heavenly, Northstar and Kirkwood in Tahoe; Whistler Blackcomb in British Columbia, Canada; Stowe in Vermont; Afton Alps in Minnesota; Wilmot in Wisconsin; Mt. Brighton in Michigan; and Perisher in New South Wales, Australia for the 2019 ski season.
- The Military Epic Pass for all other U.S., Canadian and Australian veterans and their dependents will be priced at USD$499 for adults (USD$269 for a child pass), a more than 40-percent discount off the regular price of the Epic Pass and the first in the mountain resort industry to expand its season pass discount program to include all who served in the armed forces.
- The existing Liberty Pass will be expanded to include all U.S. veterans and their dependents and will eliminate any restrictions. Priced at USD$269 for adults and USD$199 for children (ages 5-12), the Liberty Pass provides unlimited access to Keystone and Arapahoe Basin with no blackout dates.
- Vail Resorts will donate USD$1 for each 2018-2019 season pass sold to Wounded Warrior Project. Based on last year’s pass sales, the donation could exceed USD$750,000.
- Personal donation of USD$750,000 to Operation Homefront.
From The Recipients
"The generosity of our supporters enables Wounded Warrior Project to provide life-changing programs at no cost to the warriors we serve. The needs of wounded veterans are great and growing, but partners like Vail Resorts provide us with critical resources that allow us to meet those challenges head-on. We’re extremely grateful for their support." - Gary Corless, Wounded Warrior Project Chief Development Officer
"Operation Homefront is extremely grateful for Mr. Katz and Ms. Amsterdam’s extraordinary commitment to helping us serve our nation’s military families in their time of need. This significant donation will allow us to fulfill hundreds of requests for financial assistance, to provide caseworker support for those military families participating in our transitional and permanent housing programs and to host Back-to-School Brigade events for military children across the country. With 92 percent of our expenditures going toward these and other valued programs, we are confident we are having the life-changing impact we seek to provide to this very special group of our fellow citizens." - Brig. Gen. (ret.) John I. Pray Jr., Operation Homefront President and CEO
More To Come
The celebration of the 10th anniversary of the Epic Pass will continue with additional announcements over the next few months as we continue to re-imagine the mountain resort experience around the world.
This is an exciting celebration and important milestone for our Company and I’m incredibly proud to honor the epic service of the men and women of the U.S., Canadian and Australian military. With the continuous innovation that our 30,000+ employees lead with every day, I look forward to seeing what’s in store over the next 10 years and beyond.