Letter: Face Off a boon for Aspen
November 17, 2013
Face Off a boon for Aspen
I have long tried to promote what events like Fall Face Off do for our community. We first tried to convince those in the city that it was good for the community that it generated visitors and tax dollars. Obviously staying in local lodges and dining in local restaurants is a positive that helps offset subsidies. That seems to finally have taken hold. But there is much more. Events like this help fund the entities that put them on, Aspen Junior Hockey makes money on this and that makes them better and, in turn, their service to our community. Fall Face Off also shows our visitors the more affordable side of Aspen as many hockey families are on a budget.
The next advantage that seems to be rarely mentioned or accounted for in the analysis is, in my mind, perhaps the biggest benefit to our tourist-driven economy, that being events like this give people a reason to come to Aspen for the first time. We know Aspen has one of the highest return rates in the resort industry — if they come once to Aspen they are likely to return.
So when events like Fall Face Off bring in hundreds of visitors over three weekends, how many of those visitors like Aspen so much they decide they want to come back for a vacation? And then how many of these visitors come for their vacation and decide to do it every year? How many of those people introduce new friends and family to Aspen? How many decide because they are coming every year to invest in the community and buy real estate? How many of those people decide to become involved in community nonprofits? And on and on … you get it.
I don't know how to measure all this, but to me it is a factor in determining the benefit brought by these kinds of events that is under appreciated. Thanks to Aspen Junior Hockey for their efforts in Fall Face Off and thanks to the city for all their support for the event. We are not all hockey people, but there are very few in Aspen are not touched in some way by this event. I think a spring addition is great for Aspen.
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