Why Sahale and why now?
Those who have come to Meadows on peak days know how quickly the space in our current lodges fills up. Many of those spaces are being reserved for race teams and SnoBlasters and some groups are staking tables for the day leaving bags or other personal items. Considering that our last new lodge construction was the North Lodge in 1985, and that the last South Lodge expansion was almost 20 years ago, we simply need more space.
Sahale will not only add a new restaurant and meeting area with seating for 230, it will also allow us to reallocate space on the 2nd floor of our North and South lodges, which will add another 670 seats. Ultimately we will increase lodge seating by 60% with Sahale.
Why are you offering memberships?
Funding CAPEX projects of this magnitude will require us to obtain conventional financing through our lending partner, which we are prepared to do. But we have a window to get a full year head start on the building with this unique membership offer. In essence, by funding the first phase of Sahale to lay the foundation and utilities this summer through membership, we will also be able to move forward with the first phase of the overflow parking project, adding 250 parking spaces for the 2019/20 season.
Initially, we had the parking lot scheduled to start after the construction of Sahale, which would have delayed it for two, maybe three more years. Peak day parking is also a huge issue, which these additional spaces will be able to address immediately. This is all made possible through the Gold Sahale Membership.
We also prefer to “invest” in our membership by giving a meaningful discount off their passes over the next five seasons. Rather than pay interest on a loan, we are paying back those who were willing to invest in our future with the discount on their pass and great benefits as their dividends.
Why not a new lift?
We have plans for more lifts, but we need to address our parking and lodge capacity issues first. Our current lift capacity far exceeds both our parking and our lodge capacities. We need the ability to park and serve more people in order to grow our lift capacity. We want to grow in a balanced way, and we have added Vista, Stadium and replaced Buttercup all since the last lodge expansion.
Do only members get to use Sahale?
No our buildings are open for all of our guests. We just felt the significance of Sahale propelling us into the future created this opportunity.
How much is a Sahale Gold Membership?
There will be two different prices - one for ages 25 - 59 ($2600) and a discounted price for those 24 and under, or 60 and older ($2000.) The entire fee is due at time of enrollment which for the initial offering of just 1250 memberships must be by May 31.
Is there a payment plan?
Yes. You can pay 50% of the enrollment, plus a $100 non-refundable processing fee, and the balance will be auto-charged September 15, 2019.
What happens if all 1250 memberships are purchased?
We plan on only this limited offering initially. These will be purchased on a first come, first purchased basis. First day enrollment was beyond our expectations - and we now expect that all 1250 memberships will be purchased.
What are the benefits the Sahale Gold Membership provides?
Members will receive All Access Season Passes through the 2023/24 winter season including winter and summer scenic chair operations, and extended operations. Additionally, each year a Member will receive two free winter and four free summer Buddy lift tickets; and five discount Buddy lift tickets ($25 off the day of ticket or $10 off a night ticket.) Members also receive free Nordic trail access through the 2023/24 season. These benefits themselves add up to almost $2500 over the five years of membership, not even counting your All Access season passes!
What are the exclusive events and activities that Sahale Gold Members are invited to?
Members will be invited to quarterly get-togethers with the Meadows’ leadership team. We envision an early breakfast in Vertical, an informal presentation and Q&A; then an early load on the Mt. Hood Express for a half hour before it opens to the public. We will finalize dates but we’d expect these to be scheduled in December, February and April; plus a summer get together as well. There will also be “Members Only” shopping events at Meadows PDX or Outer Limits a few times each season offering special retail items and added loyalty rewards. And you better believe we’re going to have a heck of a grand opening party for when Sahale opens - planned for December of 2020.
Is my Sahale Gold Membership transferable?
No - it’s not a transferable pass - in that way it acts like an individual All Access Pass. However, you have the ability to reassign your Sahale Membership to a different individual once each season. So if you are injured, have to relocate, or any reason, you can reassign your membership to someone else for the remainder of that year. On the June 30 following the reassignment, the membership reverts back to you and you have the ability to reassign it to someone else if you need to for the next season.
Does the Sahale Gold Membership include parking privileges?
No - our parking lots are part of the state SnoPark system, which does not allow reserved parking or paid parking spaces. The SnoPark fee you pay for your payment go to Oregon for snow removal of these SnoParks, to provide you access to outdoor recreation pursuits in the winter.
Is there a cost to reassign my Membership?
The 25-59 age group Sahale Gold Membership can be reassigned once each season with no transfer fee. The 24 and under and 60 and older Sahale Gold Membership can be reassigned to an individual who is 24 and under, or 60 and older with no transfer fee. The 24 and under and 60 and older Sahale Gold Membership will require a $125 transfer fee if being reassigned to someone age 25 - 64.
What’s happening with that overflow lot?
We will be paving two of the eight acres of our future Nordic lot, and designating it for overflow parking for the 2019/20 season. This lot is located on the north side of the HRM access road, just past the ODOT gravel yard. The intersection will be redesigned this summer to add left hand turn and deceleration lanes off of highway 35 so it can be used beginning next season. This is the first phase of a project that will eventually relocate the Nordic trailer or construct a new Nordic Lodge at this location, and pave the remaining eight acres for parking. This will most likely occur after Sahale is completed.
Does 250 parking spaces really make a difference?
Yes. In the past we parked along our access roads but due to safety concerns we stopped that practice. This will help recover those spaces and reduce the likelihood that we will reach total capacity in our lots. We still need to continue with our shuttling and carpool efforts, and expect to continue to offer the Hood River Peak Day shuttle to help manage our parking. But this additional 2 acres will mean less days where we need to turn away traffic.
More Questions? Email us at Sahale@skihood.com.
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