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Hidden benefits to X Games

Dear Editor:The cost of the X Games, in terms of police work, extra cleanup and fuel burned, is easy to quantify. It is also fairly simple math to compare the spike in sales tax revenue, hotel occupancy rates and skier days to pre-X Games numbers. I’m pretty confident that the income generated was significantly greater than the expenses.What is not so easily seen are the “hidden benefits” yielded by the event. Airtime on ESPN doesn’t command Super Bowl-like dollars, but, to paraphrase Oscar Wilde, the only thing worse than being on ESPN for hours on end is NOT being on ESPN for hours on end. The Resort Association should do everything in its power to encourage feature pieces on Aspen that portray it for what it is; much more than just a sporting venue, but a unique blending of opportunities, cultural and spiritual as well as physical.Another hidden benefit is getting Aspen-Snowmass in front of a younger crowd. The skier demographic is aging, and I see the X Games as a great opportunity to create a repeat customer for years to come. As a bonus, there is built-in growth opportunity in that customer, as they will almost certainly bring first their spouses, then their children as the years go by.Was parking a hassle? Did a few kids get out of line? Sure, but parking in Aspen is always a hassle, and nearly half of the arrests were locals.For my money, there’s no such thing as bad X.Michael CampbellWoody Creek


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