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Colorado: Keystone aims to boost lodging occupancy, destination biz with a kids-ski-free deal for overnight visitors

Keystone offering free skiing for kids under 12 this season, but not for day-trippers.

Youngsters under 12 ski free with a two-night stay at the resort; other family offerings beefed up for the coming season

By Summit Voice

FRISCO — Keystone Resort is stepping up its already strong appeal to families with season-long free skiing for kids under 12 for guests staying at least two nights at a resort property.

The program is aimed at boosting occupancy and also helps Vail Resorts segment its Summit County business, potentially shifting a bit of business from hyper-crowded Breckenridge to its sister resort on the other side of Summit County.

Numerous other resorts also offer special deals to entice kids, but Keystone is differentiating its program by emphasizing the no-strings, no-blackout aspects.

“With the introduction of a Kids Ski Free offer that’s really restriction-free, we’re letting families travel as their schedule allows,” said Keystone VP and general manager John Buhler.

Keystone says it has also enhanced it s Kidtopia program with daily animation and entertainment all winter long, including the third installment of what the resort bills as the world’s largest snowfort, street performers in the base area commercial zone, kids’ apres gatherings, a weekly Kidtopia parade, on-ice dance parties at the resort’s two ice skating rinks, and the new Snowed-In Festival.

“Kids Ski Free is the next step in our evolution of family-friendly programs that add value and enhance the ski experience on and off the snow,” said hospitality VP Tim Estes. “By making this program so accessible, we open the door to more families, allowing them to spend time together in the mountains and enjoying the great outdoors. We truly believe this sets us apart and makes Keystone the best-in-class family ski destination.”

Keystone is also teaming up with Burton snowboards to develop a Burton Riglet Park and board rentals at the Mountain House area, getting the resort’s youngest customers off to a good start.

The A-51 Terrain Park is also a adding new features designed to better connect Keystone’s beginner parks to more advanced-intermediate offerings, the new features will provide first-time and beginner park enthusiasts a clear path of progression and perhaps a chance to one day be amongst the numerous professional skiers and riders who trail in A-51.

On the lesson front, Camp Keystone will offer a guarantee of the same instructor for any child booking three or more days of lessons. Camp Keystone, housed at the Mountain House base area, which offers a designated lift and teaching area, also includes special theme days and instructional techniques that incorporate games to keep children engaged on-snow longer.

Learning can also be a family affair with Keystone’s Mom, Dad and Me Lesson, a private lesson for the family that includes instruction for Mom and Dad to aid in continued progression of their children’s skills.

For families looking for a bit more adventure on the slopes, Keystone Adventure Tours (KAT) provide an in-bounds cat skiing experience accessible to high-intermediate skiers and riders.

The full-day program uses snowcats to carry skiers and riders to inbounds off-piste terrain and includes powder ski rentals, a catered lunch and instructor-guides to help enhance technique and find that next perfect powder line.

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