In today’s Park Record, columnist Amy Roberts expounds on her feelings toward Vail, Park City, and the trademark case. She has encapsulated the issue better than anyone I have read (including us here at the Park Rag).
Here are a few tidbits from Amy’s article, which most will have probably read, but I think are important:
- “From where I sit, this argument isn’t really about a trademark. It’s about trust. A trust Vail has not yet earned, from a town that is hard to convince.”
- “We do not believe you [Vail] when you state there are limitations to this trademark. We are confident you have something else up your North Face outerwear sleeve”
- “That, and honestly, your timing is awful. There has been too much change in recent years, and this trademark bit is the proverbial pin in the grenade.
- “The funky, quirky vibe Park City once had is all but gone. And we are frantically clinging to the “all but” portion of what’s left. We have been pushed to the brink of near extinction and the idea of losing our identity to a corporate trademark, no matter how farfetched, is the last straw.”
It gets even better as you read her article. If you haven’t read it, you must. Rarely are things perfect… but this comes as close as I’ve seen in a while. She tells Vail what many Parkites are feeling.
As I’ve said before, Vail are the smartest “guys” in the room. They know what they are doing. The question is whether the people of Park City (and Utah) care enough to hit them where it hurts. Where it hurts is the Epic Pass. No Epic Pass means no upfront revenue from locals and likely a decline in pass sales for Vail (MTN on the stock exchange). No Epic pass means no incremental revenue from $14 hamburgers. Do the people decide they would rather buy a few 10 Books at Deer Valley instead of the Epic Pass. Do they decide they are willing to drive to the Cottonwoods instead of spending $600+ on their Epic Pass? Do the people push for Guardsman pass to be open and maintained year-round so there is easier access to Big Cottonwood Canyon?
Who knows what the people will ultimately decide, but if you concur with Amy you may also want to consider how to cause change.
We definitely live in interesting times.