Bikinis, babes and boards at Squaw Valley’s ‘Goodwill Games’
April 23, 2009
Sunbathing at 8,200 feet surrounded by acres of breathtaking alpine terrain and wondrous blue skies while sipping a complimentary cocktail may sound like a dream, but it’s just another day in paradise up here in the Sierra. On the Sunday afternoon of April 19, Squaw Valley USA, flush with the success of its new 2010 season pass promotion, threw an invitation only island/tiki-themed bash at its High Camp locale to show its appreciation for all of its loyal season pass holders. Almost 1,000 skiers and riders flocked to the oasis for some fun in the sun.
Guests were checked in, given a wrist band, raffle and complimentary drink ticket and a cool Squaw Valley short sleeve tee which seemed appropriate, considering the balmy temps. Passholders spread onto the expansive decks and pool sides as they ate, drank and relaxed among friends and acquaintances they knew from frequenting the king of North Tahoe mountains. Many stripped down from skiwear to swimsuits and swam in the pool. Several food stations were set up to alleviate the traffic jams that usually result when hungry outdoor enthusiasts line up for free food. Passholders were pleasantly surprised to find a bounteous feast of yummy crab cakes, shrimp almost as large as lift tickets, freshly-made sushi, shish kabobs and barbecued ribs. Squaw Valley was clearly sending a message: It’s a new era at Squaw.
Squaw Valley’s charismatic spokesman and Olympian Jonny Moseley (most noted for serving up a novel gold medal worthy “dinner roll” at the 2002 Olympics) served as the afternoon’s master of ceremonies. Squaw Valley Ski Corp.’s CEO and President Nancy Cushing, clearly relaxed and enjoying herself, welcomed guests and speculated (due to the overwhelming response to the ski area’s recently announced unprecedented, more affordable season pass pricing structure) the party would be a lot bigger next year. “I had a great time! It certainly was a privilege to rub shoulders with some of the most experienced and committed skiers in the United States,” said Cushing. “I look forward to seeing everybody next year to help us celebrate our 50/60 celebration!”
Prizes were awarded to Ellie Barker and Christine Stokes for sporting the best tropical island attire.
Some of those soaking in the sun, sipping thirst quenchers, and socializing at Squaw’s high elevation included Doug Rotz, Mimi Palu and main man Dave, Alan Eckstein, Lynn Gibson and John Bossi, Charlie Pendrell, Kathy and John Anker, Eric Woodman, Uncle Otto a.k.a. Terry Quinn, Julie Conover, Bill and Nora Leeder, Larry Kushner and Deborah Skawienski, Paul Steinberg, Roger Johnson, Kevin Wightman, Betty and Mark Simpson, Reb Forte and Nancy Rygg, Heather Arst and Francis Mullen, Cherie Ballew, Susie and Darryl Sims, Janell and John Borden, Robert Capps and daughter Nicole, Dick “Dickey Donut” Nielson, Chris Arnold, Mike Brown, Bob Hickman, Tamara McKinney and Francesca, Zari Mansouri, Vikki and Larry Lawrence, Chiara and Ron Gajar and kids Stella and Toby, Meg de Vre, Keoki Flagg, Benita Luke-Tiller, Betty Walsh, Robert “Fro” Frohlich (looking well, I might add), Vance Lura sans Donna, Kym Kapalla and Rick Schuldt, and Ski Corp. employees Carolyn Wallace Dee, Sue Bennett, Christine Horvath, Ivan McGurk, Josh Sussman, Tom Kelly and Savannah Cowley.
“Vicki Kahn can be e-mailed at Vickikahn@sbcglobal.net