When Al Henceroth from Arapahoe Basin started blogging about day-to-day insights back in 2008, SlopeFillers still was still years away from even being an idea in my head.
Now, 15 years later, Al’s consistency and insights have made his blog a beautiful example of transparency, taking guests along with your story, and giving folks a connection to the top of an organization. Some posts are short, some are long, but they’re always interesting, helpful peeks that combine information skiers need to know with unique perspectives into running a ski area.
So being, I’ve hoped that more GMs would follow suit. And some certainly have, but there’s one in particular I’m especially excited about.
When Ben Bartz was named to SAM’s 10 under 30 list in 2019, he was just 23 years old. Which means that when Al started his blog, Ben wasn’t even a teenager yet.
But with a love of the industry, a ski area management degree under his belt, and a solid work ethic, Ben quickly climbed the ranks to where he was appointed GM of Snowriver last fall. A true student of the all things ski resorts, it wasn’t long after that he started up Ben’s Blog and the insights into Snowriver’s story began.
Since his first post post on November 22, 2023, Ben has written 21 posts across a wide variety of topics. Some were as simple as highlighting this year’s pass products or a general resort update after skiing with his family, but my favorite post so far (and spark for writing this post) is Ben’s most recent update that gives a really insightful look at lift installation and summer work at the mountain.
He does a great job of tying in people, history, education, a clean writing style, and well-framed photos to make for a GM blog that I’m really excited to follow.
There’s one last thing you’ll notice about Ben’s Blog: it sits in an iframe.
Sometimes we have an idea like starting a blog and go, “oh man, shoot, our CMS isn’t really set up for a blog or [other challenges] or whatever…” And maybe Ben faced the same. But instead of letting that derail the idea, they started Ben’s Blog using Blogger and simply iframed it into their normal site.
As the saying goes, he didn’t let perfect be the enemy of good.
In this case, Ben’s blog and insights are really, really good. And getting something working asap, even if it’s not as neatly integrated into their site as other content, was absolutely the right move.
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