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Midwest Resorts Begin to Get in on Summer, Mud-Run Action

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Mud-runs may not fit the brand of every resort (I don’t anticipate seeing Deer Valley playing host anytime soon), but for others, this growing trend is becoming a perfect way to get skiers to the mountain once the snow melts. I first noticed these popping up last season on both coasts, but recently saw the midwest cashing in on the trend as well.

I’m not totally positive where the trend started, but my first introduction to the concept was through Tough Mudder. According to an video on their site, the race is typically 10-12 miles long with upwards of 25 military-style obstacles along the way.


The obstacles, that are claimed to be designed by British Special Forces (why Special Forces in Britain are so good at designing obstacles, I’m not sure, but it sounds cool) bring out tough, athletic people looking for a challenge.

Perfect North’s version is called the Mud-Stash. At 5,000 meters, it’s not as long as a Tough Mudder, but the three installments (one at night) over the course of the summer provide a total of over 9 miles of racing where mustaches, real or fake, are recommended. Each person that registers gets:

  • A spot in the race
  • Mud-Stash medal
  • Entertainment as part of race festivities
  • “Pick Your Perks” $20 gift card

The gift card lets you choose what extras you get. According to the site, “You decide what you want! Mud-Stash T-shirt? Lots of Food or Beer? Even use it towards your next Mud-Stash Admission!”

I Love It
I love the idea of a summer mud run at resorts, for three reasons.

First, the demographic – athletic, younger, gutsy – meets a huge chunk of your loyal, local guest demographic. This gives you a chance to keep skiers involved with your brand and spending money at the resort during the summer months.

Second, the demographic – athletic, younger, gutsy – is a perfect match for someone that would be a perfect candidate for a future skier. I’d include a learn-to-ski offer in their registration packet or use your database to see if they are a previous, winter guest and trigger an offer by email.

Third, the style of race is unique and fun to watch. I’ve never been able to see one live yet, but I’m excited at the chance to catch one this summer. It brings out local news outlets, other skiers, and gives people that matter (guests and media) a reason to visit your mountain in the summer.

I love that the midwest is getting in on this trend.

About Gregg & SlopeFillers
I've had more first-time visitors lately, so adding a quick "about" section. I started SlopeFillers in 2010 with the simple goal of sharing great resort marketing strategies. Today I run marketing for resort ecommerce and CRM provider Inntopia, my home mountain is the lovely Nordic Valley, and my favorite marketing campaign remains the Ski Utah TV show that sold me on skiing as a kid in the 90s.

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