A government proposal to switch the BC Family Day holiday from the second to third Monday in February has some ski resorts up in arms, but staff at Mount Washington aren’t overly concerned.
“It does affect the mainland a lot more than us,” spokesperson Sheila Rivers said. “It’s not only for the Family Days in Canada. For places like Whistler, the bigger destination resorts, it’s the President’s Day in America. It’s getting those back-to-back weekends, avoiding overlap with the other days and generating really strong visitation numbers for February.”
Mount Washington is somewhat isolated, as opposed to a destination resort, added Rivers. She notes 80-plus per cent of Mount Washington visitors are Islanders.
“We still do provide 50 per cent off on lift tickets on Family Day.”
Mount Washington has united itself with the Canada West Ski Areas Association to support and advocate for the timing of Family Day. Rivers said the CWSAA was a driving force behind the original Family Day weekend.
“The ski industry really is responsible for the timing of it, due to the fact that we didn’t want those overlapping weekends, especially with President’s Day. It’s huge visitation numbers for a lot of the bigger destination resorts. We stand as a whole with them.”
Opening day at Mount Washington is targeted for Dec. 8, depending on the weather. Last Wednesday provided a good sign for the hill, with a whiteout in the morning and rain later in the day.
“Looking at the last two years and the forecast going into this winter, we’re pretty positive that’s going to be the day,” Rivers said.