Why I am a mountain host
To Skip Murphy, Whiteface Mountain Ski Center:
Besides being my supercisor, you have become a close personal friend of my family and me. As you know, and probably only you know, I have been considering no longer being a mountain host. I have given this some serious thought over the past few weeks and thought the only way to figure it out was to put my feelings on paper. At the end of the day, it was a clear and simple decision.
I feel so passionate about being a host, feel free to share my passion with others. I was contemplating sending this to the entire group but trust in you to do what you think is best.
Looking forward to seeing you this Friday or Saturday.
Please see attached letter.
With the use of smartphone technology I realize that I have driven close to four times around the world in the past nine years from Long Island to be a volunteer Whiteface Mountain host. WHY? I ponder …
As I close in on my ninth year and consider no longer being a host in the future, I began to contemplate what motivates me and why I choose to be a volunteer “WF” mountain host.
While I try to figure out what to do, I ask myself what I would miss the most:
Free season pass? Sure, but I bet not one of you would give up skiing or riding if the program was abolished and you had to purchase your own pass.
The discounts on food and drink? Yes, but I’m sure you would still eat and drink even if you brown bagged it to save a few bucks.
The locker? Absolutely! Positively! This convenience is nothing short of what I feel is one of our best perks. However, if I rented a locker by the season, what I would miss most is the camaraderie, the laughter, the stories and the downright pre-game locker-room vibe. As we get assigned our duties for the day, the sight and sound of click, snap, lock, sharpen, wax, etc. is music to my ears. I would miss that place because it truly is a “PALACE.”
After days of pondering, I said to my wife (who, by the way, is my rock. I may drive most of the miles, but she helps me pack the family, the food, the dogs, as well as cleans and gases up the truck for each trip), “You know, at first I would miss the pass, the discounts, the locker, but I know if I were no longer a ‘WF’ mountain host, the void I could not fill when I put on my name tag and apparel would be the overwhelming gratification I get by helping another human being without monetary compensation, recognition or accolades.” This most fulfilling and gratifying experience has compelled me to drive around the world to be a “WF” volunteer mountain host.
I said this to most of you a few years back at the end-of-the-year host party. Some say I’m crazy to drive all those miles, spend all that money on gas and tolls. Well, you are right about that, I am crazy. Crazy about the Adirondacks, Whiteface and every one of my fellow mountain hosts and the employees, from management to bartenders to parking lot staff, etc.
It is an honor and a privilege to put on that jacket, and as my mentor (the late Jim Allott) would say, “Go out there and do good things.”
May God bless my entire Whiteface family.
I’ll be back next year!