No snow? No problem, businesses say
Even though snow has yet to fall around North Tahoe and Truckee, local shop and lodging owners say they are not worried about business for the holiday weekend.
“People in the [ski and snowboard] industry know not to count on Thanksgiving,” said Scott Willers, operations manager for Tahoe Dave’s.
Most ski resorts would like to be open by Thanksgiving, even if it’s just one run covered with a light base of man-made snow. But whether or not snow falls and stays by Thanksgiving seems to have no bearing on the traditions associated with Turkey Day.
“Everyone wants to be home with mom,” said Liz Dugan, sales and events manager for PlumpJack Squaw Valley Inn.
While PlumpJack’s hotel still has some availability, the dining room is nearly sold out for Thanksgiving dinner. Dugan said she does not think the lack of snow will affect either business or a tourist’s experience in Tahoe for the holiday because the weekend is typically a family affair.
Laura Ioli, assistant property manager for Tahoe North Rentals, agreed that her vacation property rentals and ski leases have not been affected by predictions of no holiday snow.
Typically, Ioli said, November is the dead season and a slower month anyway. However, numbers already show a 65 percent improvement from this time last year. Some in the retail sector benefit whether there’s weather or not.
“We’ve got a balance ” when skiing is good, the rental portion [of the store] is good, when skiing is bad, we still have retail,” said Scott Willers, operations manager for Tahoe Dave’s, which has stores in Truckee and across the North Shore.
Obviously the ski resorts will lose business with a lack of snow, but other business around the Lake Tahoe area fall into place with tradition, and will likely be unaffected by the weather, according to Willers.
Porter’s Sports in Truckee, Incline Village and Tahoe City is in the same boat as Dave’s, and according to Josh Hall, operations manager, the business has taken steps earlier to increase or maintain sales, such as Internet marketing, if the ski season does begin later in the year.
“It would be better if it snowed,” said Kay Williams, Granlibakken spokesperson.
But this year’s holiday special ” Thanksgiving dinner included with lodging ” contributed to the weekend’s booking, said Williams. While people do tend to hold off on booking when they aren’t sure if they will be able to ski, this weekend still looks promising.
“We should all do a snow dance,” said Williams.