There there many places offering special multi-day deals for never-evers or novice beginners. Some include a season pass or a frequent skier card or even a pair of skis. Elan is one of the companies working with more than one ski area to get newbies hooked.
As as example, Cataloochee in NC has an offer for $299. The advantage over a multi-week program is the ski days can be done any time that fits in someone's schedule. @ithaca got the package last season and did a few lessons (driving from Atlanta to NC) before a trip out west.
Slide in 5 is back! This package includes everything you need: five (5) lift tickets, fIve (5) ski rentals and five (5) 1-3/4 hour lessons, all for only $299. Complete your 5 lessons and receive a FREE pair of Elan skis with bindings. You must be twelve years of age or older to participate in the program.
Killington has worked with Elan the last few years. Bromley had a program for kids ages 5-14 that included 6 lessons, skis with bindings, and a season pass for $599. Cranmore in NH had a program with 3 lessons that provided Rossi skis once the lessons were completed.
Small places often have a beginner package that includes lift ticket, rentals, and a lesson. Usually in comparison to buying a lift ticket with rentals, the lesson is almost free. Even so, most people don't bother with the lesson and head out on the slope thinking they'll fall a lot and eventually figure it out.
The trend seems to be to offer a beginner package of at least 3 lessons on three separate ski days. I assume the likelihood of someone learning enough to get hooked is higher than after one lesson. Although the goal of the consulting company helping ski schools with terrain based instruction is to make sure a newbie has fun on the very first day.