Aspen Skiing Co. full-time staff ready for ‘spring break’ |

Aspen Skiing Co. full-time staff ready for ‘spring break’

Aspen Skiing Co.'s administrative headquartersat the Airport Business Center will be a little quiet next week. For the second year in a row, as many workers as possible are being urged to take 'spring break.'
Aspen Times file

Aspen Skiing Co. employees are heading out on spring break en masse starting Monday.

For the second consecutive year, Skico brass is urging hundreds of full-time, year-round employees to take the same time off.

Last year, the move was made, in part, to cut costs. Skico was coming off a tough year where lower than average snowfall resulted in a drop in business.

This year, spring break is more to “recharge,” according to Jeff Hanle, Skico vice president of communications.

“We had a great year,” Hanle said. “(But) we realized how beneficial it was to everyone last year.”

There are differences in how the program is being applied between the two years. For starters, the spring break will be one week. Last year it was two.

This year there are more exemptions. If a person burned through their vacation time during the school spring break period or if they are undertaking work that cannot wait, spring break isn’t required, Hanle said.

The Limelight staff will keep the fires burning. Public relations will have someone answering inquiries. Accounts payable will take care of the bills. Nevertheless, it will be a skeleton crew at work next week, Hanle said.

Skico’s Spring break might become a permanent thing. He likened it to Skico’s “front line” program — where office workers, including top brass — take shifts at busy times on front line jobs such as loading chairlifts, bussing tables and working the parking lots. Skico did that during the Great Recession as a cost savings and at other times to make up for a shortage of staff. Now office workers continue to help on front lines because it’s fun and provides perspective, Hanle said.

In that vein, spring break might continue because it is welcomed.

“It gives a large group of people a chance to recharge,” he said.

Skico estimated last year that spring break applied to between 800 and 1,000 employees.